Thursday, June 26, 2008

Hello from Nevada

We headed out Sunday afternoon and arrived on Monday morning. We are visiting family. I'll be home on Monday, and I'll post birthday boy photos. The birthday went well, although it left me exhausted.
Have a great week everyone!

Friday, June 20, 2008

One Year Ago

On this day one year ago, I spent the day doing a bit of nesting.
First, I worked on painting my daughters' room (we had just moved them downstairs). I remember squatting in the window well, in 80+ degrees, hot sunshine, painting the window frame, thinking "This better not make me go into labor." It was my due date, and I had a lot to do.
Next, I set up the slip-n-slide, again in 80+ degree sun. More squatting.
Then, I swept and mopped the baby's room.
Then, I hauled the crib pieces up from the basement and put it together in the baby's room.
Later, I finished painting the bedroom and somehow managed to get pink paint on my big belly.
Then, of course I had to set up my girls' bed so they could sleep.

So, is it any wonder that my water broke that night, while singing the girls to sleep?

The nurses all thought I was having a girl when they saw the pink paint on my belly. (Yeah, no time for a shower.)
That was the least of my worries, though, when my son's heart rate dropped twice, before I was barely even settled in my room.
So, after an emergency c-section, my son was born at 12:48 am on June 21st.

And now, one year later, my son is one of the biggest joys of my life.
It was quite a day.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Peonies in a Jar

Aren't they gorgeous? Only one of my five peonies have any signs of bud or flowers. I'm not sure what's wrong with the rest. They bloomed wonderfully last year. I'm not letting these go to waste. I might have to carry them with me where ever I go around the house today.

On another note, my sweet little man is turning ONE on Saturday! We are planning a backyard barbecue/picnic with family and friends. Everything is planned out except for his birthday cake. We have a tradition in my family that birthday child gets his/her very own cake on their first birthday. It's a great photo op as they either tuck in enthusiastically or gingerly sample this strange new treat. Well, I've been trying to come up with a fun, summer picnic themed cake to make for my boy. I haven't hit on one I truly love. So far I've thought of a bumble bee, a beach ball, or a sail boat cake. I can't decide for sure, and I need some input. If anyone out there has a good cake idea, please leave a comment or email me. I'd really appreciate some more ideas.

And this little sleeping surfer dude really needs a fun cake!

Doesn't he look comfy!

Now, I'm off to read, by myself, out in the sunshine.

(Well, after I throw in one more load of laundry, that is.)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today, June 16, 2008

Outside my skies, sunshine, blooming peonies

I am thinking...about my son's first birthday party this weekend

I am thankful sweet children

From the kitchen...left-over strawberry rhubarb pie

I am wearing...khaki linen Capri's, white tee, brown flip-flops, pony tail

I am creating...summer plans and schedules

I am the lake

I am reading..."Martha Stewart Living" and Rose Cottage by Mary Stewart

I am hoping...for sunshine on Saturday

I am son yelling out the front door, at birds, perhaps?

Around the house...laundry, pack for lake day, water veggies

One of my favorite things...fresh cherries!

A few plans for the rest of the week...cousin to stay, birthday party prep

Here is a picture thought I am sharing:

My newly set-up vinaigrette making station. Trying to get myself to eat more salads.
For more Simple Woman's Daybook entries, visit The Simple Woman.
Have a beautiful day!

Father's Day

We had such a great day. Finally, the weather has been improving, and yesterday was the best day so far. Blue skies, sunshine, not windy.
We spent the day at my sister's with my dad. She lives above a lake on some wooded property, so the setting was just perfect. The kids ran around, dug for worms, jumped in the sprinkler, and had a great time. The babies (her daughter is one month older than my son-who will be one this Saturday!) played with the ice in the drink bucket, crawled and toddled around, and sat on laps. The dads relaxed, joked, talked truck, and enjoyed themselves. My sister and I prepared the meal (with the exception of the yummy ribs, which her husband was in charge of), ran after kids, and chit-chatted. We all had a great time.

Our menu:

Barbecued Ribs
Cedar Plank Salmon
Corn on the Cob
Baked Beans
Strawberry Lemonade

and for dessert:

Grasshopper Pie
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie (with vanilla ice cream, of course)

It was all simple, messy, and so good.
I wish I had pictures of our day. I guess I was too busy chasing kids, applying bug repellent and sunscreen, and eating!

And now for another day in the sun...we are off to my mom's lake place for the day!
I just love summer.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Summer Lists

I love lists. I love getting all the ideas and thoughts that swirl around in my head into nice, neat, orderly lists. As I've been waiting for real summer weather to arrive (come on, it's been cold and rainy for a week), I have created pages of them. Thought I would share some. (I don't know about you, but I also love reading other peoples lists.)

Summer Reading List:
(sorry, I don't have the time to link all of them)

For me:

Rose Cottage by Mary Stewart

Elizabeth and Her German Garden by ??

Mittenstrings for God by Katrina Kenison

Gift from the Sea (again) by Anne Morrow Lindbergh

The Long Fatal Love Chase by Louisa May Alcott

(If I have the time, I'm sure I'll add to the list)

For the girls:

The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall

Pipi in the South Seas by Astrid Lindgren

The Worry Week by Anne Lindbergh

Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace

And-one of the Boxcar Children books, a summery one, and I'm trying to find something by Enid Blyton, because I keep seeing her name pop up and the books sound great.

Summer Kitchen:

Clean thoroughly
Organize cupboards
Grow herbs in windowsill
Stock baskets with fruit
Stock freezer with kid-friendly ice-packs and homemade popsicles
Set up a vinaigrette making station on counter with vinegars, olive oil, shallots, garlic, and lemons
Get grill ready: clean, refill tank
Set out juicer and blender

Summer Car:

Clean (!)
Stock with:
-hand wipes
-paper napkins
-snacks: granola bars, fruit bars, graham crackers
-band aids and alcohol wipes

Store in back:
-big blanket
-extra diapers
-beach bag with towels and life jackets
-toys and games for long trips

Summer Outings:

beach (at a local lake)

Grama's lake cabin (That's Grama Jo, above, with my five year old)

my mom's lake house (I know, aren't we lucky!)


Riverfront Park (has rides, a carousel, large fountain to run through)

play days at friends' houses
berry picking at local farms
free children's movie mornings (at a local theater)

Summer stuff to do @ home:

be outside as much as possible
make playdough
read (together and alone)
paint outside
make a tent in the backyard
tend the garden
water table
mud pies
barbecues and s'mores
run through the sprinkler
ride bikes

Okay, now I'm excited, yet exhausted. I need to go curl up with a book. But a dirty house awaits...
Lists are nice, but they don't really get anything done!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


June is a wonderful month:

School gets out.
It's not too hot, not too cool.
Everything is green and blooming.
And...Summer officially starts!

Something from childhood-the promise of three months of freedom and adventure, perhaps-stirs up in my heart, even at 35. Plans, dreams, ideas flutter around my head as the days lengthen and the air warms.

I can't wait for the first trip to my Grandma Jo's lake cabin. I've been going there since I was two years old. Just like I used to, my children scamper up and down the trail barefoot, make mud pies, run down the dock and jump into the lake, have adventures with cousins, and go to sleep with lullabies sung by my grandma, their great-grandma. I still love to sleep out on the deck, listening to the waves lapping the shore, the crickets, the occasional boat speeding by. Waking up to fresh breezes, bird song, and the smell of Grandma's pancakes. Wow, we (my sister, cousins and I) really were so blessed to have this special place. And we still get to enjoy it.

Other summer treats:

strawberry picking
walks to the park
lazy afternoons
music from the ice cream truck
laying in the hot sun after swimming until your lips are purple
family get-togethers
farmer's market delights
camping trips

...the list could go on and on...

Let's just say, I'm just a little in love with summertime.
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