Summer Happenings

Well well!  This summer has just about got me down in mostly a good way with lots of projects, beach/swimming days, and a few not so fun things like laundry that never ends.  Must be all those wet towels!  We enjoyed another great mommy meet-up day organized by Ali over at Mom Explores Virginia Beach.  Holden had a great time at Sandbridge Beach.  I hadn’t been to this particular beach in Virginia Beach since way back when in 2008.  Whoa!  Doesn’t feel like it was six years ago!  


Notice the super cool Spiderman sunglasses slightly askew…

Holden is growing up so much before our very eyes and loves to be a helper.  He’s pretty good at helping me do the laundry (aka put clothes in the washing machine and switching those to the dryer that I hand him), likes to dust with his “rag” and “feder duster,” and can take things to various locations around the house that I tell him to (so long as the room isn’t dark because that’s just crazy talk, Mom!).  His favorite thing to do is to help Daddy, without a doubt.  Here he is helping with a little yard work.  

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Safety first with those glasses on!

There’s been lots of library trips (only one on a rainy day) and playing with Daddy.  

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Excuse the child and dog alien eyes.

We also journeyed up to Gloucester, Virginia to see some family this week.  It had been quite a long time, and it was Holden’s first time visiting with them.  He quickly partnered up with his (some number that I’m not sure of) cousin, Daisy.  They didn’t let the boy-girl differences keep them from having fun.  They sandboxed it up, and she had him pushing the baby carriage by the time the day was done.  Family is so important.  Challenging, drive you crazy, makes you want to be the one person on a deserted island at times…but important.  I was so glad that it worked out for Holden and I to visit with some of ours.  

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To top it all, they had a golf cart!  H was in heaven.  I’m pretty sure he got about twenty rides around their quiet acres.  

With all this fun going on, it was definitely a little sobering to prepare for our hospital visit today with H.  We headed over to the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters in Norfolk, Virginia relatively early this morning.  He had out-patient surgery on both eyes today to open up his tear ducts.  He has had some trouble since birth with just yucky-ness in his eyes.  He also had a lovely case of the commonly referred to eye woe known as “pink eye” this past winter/spring.  I mean, who knows if it was actually spring or winter since our winter lasted until about Memorial Day.  Anywho, this surgery will help prevent  the gook in his eye that typically finds its way there after  or during a cold.  There is also the thought that it will help make him less susceptible to eye infections.  With all that logic being said, I was mildly a nervous wreak.  I’m pretty sure I gave myself a case of migraines (yes, this is self-diagnosed) and just a general yucky feeling.  Mommies worry so much about their little ones.  Even the little things, like a bumped head or a lack of vegetables, can send us over the edge.  Well, you can bet I was over the edge and then some running every possible disastrous outcome.  I did not imagine a terrorist take-over of the hospital.  You gotta draw the line somewhere people.  However, I’m pretty sure I covered every other situation in my mind.  Oh my mind, I need it, but it drives me crazy.  The Mr. did his duty when it was time for H to go back for the procedure.  He made me mad at him over something silly!  It did just the trick!  No cry cry for me.  I think he’d much rather deal with a cranky woman than a crying woman.  Ha!  I also felt a little silly for being so worked up about the whole thing since there were parents there with children who had so many more health issues than a defunct tear duct that honestly wasn’t bothering H in the least.  Here is the little ray of sunshine in his pre-surgery room looking as handsome as can be.


The nurse joked with him that he was turning into a banana.  Everyone was super nice with lots of kid-friendly toys and TVs.  We even caught an episode of H’s favorite monkey, Curious George.  P.S.  Notice the trash can in the background with “TRASH” written across it.  Well…yes, one would think.  🙂  The final update was that everything went fine.  Holden was super upset when we were called back to see him in the post-operative anesthesia unit.  After lots of cuddles from moi, some apply juice, and a few terrifying blood pressure checks, we were on our way home.  He ate a pretty good lunch and was groggy enough to ask to be put down for a “night night.”  We’re so thankful to have that behind us!  Whew!  It makes me tired just writing about all these things.  Hope your summer is going well and that you avoided any hospital stops of your own.  





Simple Summer Party Planning

We are very excited about having family over this weekend to enjoy some food and let them see our new home.  I admit that I’m not a good candidate for a home renovation.  I begin huffing and puffing as soon as I walk around the house for a bit.  Boxes, books, hunting paraphernalia, furniture, pictures, oh the list goes on and on.  It drives me crazy.  Fully crazy.  Case in point, my meltdown yesterday that left me telling the Mr. to go back to work and how much I hate this house.  This was so hurtful (like it is his job to fix every little thing and feeling that my crazy brain cooks up!) and untrue.  My environment very much affects me, like it or not.  A messy room will bother me sooner or later.  Now, I’m not OCD by any means, but I’m perhaps right at the borderline between OCD and just neat and tidy.  For example, what in the world is a dreidel doing out and about in July!?!?!



Ok, enough about me at less than my best.  Today is another day, and I’m excited to be planning for some good food and having family over for the first time to my new home which I LOVE.  


I’m thinking a well-loved dessert that I’ll keep for a surprise, but I bet you can guess that it includes chocolate!  I also listed a little DIY project to get our new address out to everyone.  We {heart} mail!  It something along the lines of these…{photo courtesy of Hand Make My Day}


Fun paper products and utensils will definitely help this party be simple in the clean up department.  I got all this jotted down while the little man watched the tree trimmers.


He absolutely loved it and followed them from window to window.  Mommy loved it too.  🙂  

What is your favorite summer BBQ recipe?

Have a great day.




The Secret to Saturdays

Cloudy Saturdays can be a bit of a summer downer.  This is especially true for little boys who have big beach plans AND pack their shovels and buckets up for a trip to the Shore.  Despite the overcast and almost slightly chilly breeze, we had a great Saturday = fun day.  Granny treated us right with yummy food and rise and shine outside time.  What little boy wouldn’t love to be up early and outside with the animals!  I can vouch for our little boy that it is heavenly.  We spent the rest of the day hanging with Holden’s Aunt D and Moochie.  He may be the only boy around these parts to have his pizza lunch at a local winery!  We sipped water (fancy, fizzy water for me, a treat!) while Moochie and D sipped the local vino.  The place is called The Bloxom Winery in (you guessed it!  Bloxom, VA).  There was even a cute play set for H to enjoy.  The place is only open on Saturdays from 12 to 7 p.m.  If you are in the area, I would recommend it.  Just be prepared for a longer wait and more busier time.  However, it was blissfully peaceful for a quiet lunch today.  Holden absolutely loved the pizza!  He ate an entire pizza to himself!  It is about a paper plate size for reference.

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I didn’t get any good pictures of the pizza though.  Guess we were too hungry!  The olives looked delish as well with some assorted other treats inside at the tasting bar.  Yum!  I just love olives.  Big surprise, little H loves them as well.  🙂  I’m pretty sure that pizza and family make for good consolation to our botched beach day.

A few other pics from our busy days this week…

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Have a great weekend!




How To Tuesday: Beating the Summer Heat While Having Fun

Happy Hot Tuesday!  It has been just oppressively hot here, and I find that I’m over the outdoors by 11 each day.  I mean, it’s just too hot!  How do you keep active and enjoy the outdoors this time of year?  I know I’ll be whining about the cold soon enough, so this is how I enjoy it without melting into a puddle (although I felt like that was going to happen today!).


We were planning to head to the beach ourselves today, but a cloudy sky with storms possible kept us at home.  Not to worry though!  We got into plenty of fun in those busy morning hours.




These are the “rolling hills”  of Mt. Trashmore.  We were the lucky ducks today who got to see the grass being cut “up high!”  Library stop, puzzles, book reading, and some coloring with markers with crayons rounded out our morning.  I hear a cold front is on its way to us!  Hip Hip Hooray!  I never thought I’d say that but melting in the shade while you watch your kid fun around at 10 in the morning is never quite relaxing.  Have fun!



Fit In to Me

You know…a lot of times I feel like I don’t “fit in” whatever that means.  If I had to pinpoint this feeling, I would say it started in third grade when all those sacked out primary kids from another school came up to my school aka the K-5 elementary school.  I felt like I didn’t “fit in” with my old friends who were enjoying meeting all the new peeps.  Then, we move on to middle school and that was just ick.  Unfortunately, I’m not one of those fabulously cool people who don’t give a rip if they FIT IN.  Oh to be one of those!  I actually do/did care more than a little but not enough to really get in a state of teen angst over it.

As I’ve gotten older, okay, let’s not lie…this probably took until about adulthood.  You know, the adulthood where you pay your own bills and move in with boyfriend, that kind.  I really *started* to be okay with me.

Here’s ten truths…

1.  I dread social situations.  Therein may lie my fitting in problem, huh?  Recently, I was talking with a neighbor and sweating buckets.  Now, it was 90ish degrees outside, but I was standing there.  We were talking.  She was nice.  There was no need to freak out.  She wasn’t asking questions that I was incapable of answering.  It was more like, “Now, where do you work?  Are you finished with all the house painting?”  Easy yes or no’s like that.

2.  I eat weird stuff all the time and love it.  Like tonight for instance – I had canned salmon with capers, olives, rosemary, mayo, yogurt, and a hot sauce type thing on 1/2 a hot dog roll (toasted). Bi-zarre.

3.  I hate doing my hair.  I wish that a shaved head could work for me.  I have this fear that I am too tall for a short do.  Natalie Portman did rock it in V for Vendetta.  Same name, same hair?

4.  I hate having bad food out.  I will pitch a fit about going to a yuck restaurant including any fast food with only slight exceptions for Chik-fil-a and Subway.  Now, weird slightly not good food at home is A OK.

5.  I love a list, a schedule, a planner…and I keep multiple calendars going.

6.  I imagine a target on the back of any person in front of me while running, sinister!

7.  I didn’t like kids prior to becoming a teacher – sort of a cart-before-the-horse thing.

8.  I eat some type of “dessert” after both lunch and dinner (sweet cereal counts!  but so does chocolate!)

9.  I hate cocktail receptions.  I mean, where is the food?  Why isn’t there a meal?  Can we sit?  No, there is no sitting.  I mean, what the????

10.  I could take or leave flowers.  Isn’t that weird?  They’re nice and everything, but I don’t want to garden.  Truthfully, I don’t even really think about putting them in the house when they’re sprouting up outside.

People, including me, are all weird in their own way.  I think the trick is to just get over your own weirdness and stop being so self-conscious about it.  That’s my goal anyway.



Let them eat cake and celebrate!

When you want something sweet, what do you do?  I like to bake.  Now, I admit that I’m not a good baker.  In fact, I’m pretty close to average I like to think.  I whipped up a semi-homemade cake on Friday night using a boxed angel food cake and a homemade vanilla buttercream recipe with a hefty amount of our homemade strawberry jelly.  Random, right?  The truth is that it turned out pretty good!

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Obviously, the first step is pretty easy.  Buy and bake angel food cake box mix.  I added a little bit of lemon flavoring to the batter.  The second step is only slightly more complex…


Once I had made the frosting, I added in a good amount about 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup of strawberry jelly.  I was carefully to stir as I went to not make it too runny.  Then, I poured the frosting on top the (mostly) cooled cake.  Again, I’m not a baker.  I should have let it cool all the way, but I was impatient.  I really wanted a piece before bed.  Ha!  

The second part of this post commemorates our official move out from our storage unit!  We’ve actually had some fun when we’ve visited this place.  Who knew a storage unit could be fun!  Holden loves playing there, looking at all the items collected there.  

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But most things are fun with these cuties…


Have a great start to the week!  Enjoy some sweets especially some fruit!  



5 for Friday

Wow!  This week flew by!  I don’t know about you, but I have distinct “high” and “low” days of the week.  Monday was a low with a doctor confirming that Holden will have to have a minor surgery to correct a tear duct issue in his eye.  Totally not a big deal, but yet a big deal.  You know what I mean????  Tuesday and Wednesday were crazy, productive days.  Those kind of days always make me happy.  🙂  All the painting (for now) is complete!  Hallelujah!  We are this.close to having everything out of storage thanks to my 3 truckloads on Wednesday when the little man went to daycare aka fun, party time for the day.  I mean water games, painting, snack, nap…sign me up!  Not to mention we took in 2 story times this week.  One was our regular one on Thursday at our library.  Today, we journeyed over to Chesapeake to have some fun at another story time.  This one was provided by the lovely Ali of Mom Explores Virginia Beach.  She puts all these fun times together for the moms and kids!  How awesome is she!  Holden loved the bounce house time at our previous one, and he also enjoyed the story time (BONUS!  There was a showing of Corduroy.  Cute story if you haven’t heard it before.  Here’s a link to buy, and here’s a link to a Youtube video (warning!  I didn’t preview the video!).  Holden has a copy of the book, but I didn’t know how he’d do with the longer plot.  He certainly was interested in the version shown there!

Without any additional ramblings, here are my 5 randoms for Friday!


Chalk the Walk ARTsplosion – The theme this year is superheroes.  I’m thinking H might like this!  Basically, artists create sidewalk art on the boardwalk.  Here’s a link for more info.  



Kind neighbors – We’ve been very blessed to move into a very welcoming neighborhood.  I must admit that it is going to take some getting used to.  Our previous neighborhood was much more “you leave me along, I’ll leave you alone.”  This whole motto worked for me as I’m so introverted that I’m off the scales!  No, seriously, I am.  I even have a plate to return today which arrived at my house a few days ago with yummy muffins on it.  Now, I have to return it.  Oh the agony of having to return a plate to my nice neighbor!  First world problems of a hobbit.


Whenever I go out to lunch with my sister and mom, they (and me too!) usually request some place that’s new, good, healthy, and CHEAP!  Sometimes, this can be quite a challenge!  Author Leanne Brown wrote Good and Cheap:  Eat Well on $4/Day.  She wrote it as a way to help families on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps.  Read an article written by Time magazine here about what she’s doing to help get this into the hands of people who need it.



Picnics! –  I’ve never met a picnic that I didn’t like!  Holden and I had a picnic together today…along with a gazillion flies that wanted to take over!  It was perfect though.  This week had been busy, so we needed a little quiet time.  Picnics don’t have to be hard.  I think when a mom hears picnic she’s like “Cooler!  Chips!  Deli meat!  Water bottles!  Dirt in our food!  Never mind!”  This can so happen, but it doesn’t necessarily need to be that way.  I packed all our stuff in under five minutes even with little helping hands.



Just getting to spend time with this guy!  I know that the time is short.  Although days can seem long (like Temper Tantrum Thursday!) at times, he will soon be off on other adventures with friends, at big boy school, and just creating his own life.  I constantly need to remind myself of this and to treasure these moments.

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Thanks Oak Grove for treating us right on this cloudy Friday!  Have a wonderful weekend!