Thursday, May 31, 2012

Dress Rehearsal

This afternoon was the dress rehearsal for the girls' dance recital.

Recital is Saturday.

Very blurry picture.  But, I love E's expression.

D getting her dance moves going.

Cute picture of S, the girls' friend.

The girls did a great job today.  Love the expression on S.  Almost shocked.

Almost done.

Footloose was a fun song for the girls to dance to this year.  And it was cute that there was a little boy in their class.

The finale song this year is Whitney Houstons' "I Wanna Dance With Somebody". It's a great song to finish the show.

And fitting with Whitney Houston passing away earlier this year.

The girls are very excited for their recital.

So excited that they are now telling me that they still want to dance next year.


I thought we were done with dance.  Hmmmm.

I think I may let them come down from the recital high before broaching the subject again.

Interesting turn of events.  I will keep you posted on how it turns out.

Ultimately I would love to be done with dance.  But, if they really want to do a class next year I will most likely let them sign up for one.

potd #150.  Love the little cowgirl attitude D is showing.  A cute costume, for sure.

**on a side note, hubby & I ended up picking a completely different color for the exterior of the house than I thought we would.  Instead of going with Alexandria Beige, we decided on Benjamin Moore's Stormy Sky.  Trim color will be an off-white and I *think* the front door will be painted Dinner Party. The painter came to set up the scaffolding today and he is planning to start on Monday.  Can't wait.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Color Commitment

We've got a lot going on around our house.

Busy end of school year stuff.

Dance recital this weekend.  Dress rehearsal is tomorrow.

Hubby is sanding and repainting our deck.

We're putting stone around our raised garden beds.

The veggie garden needs to get planted.  Flowers need to be potted.

Mulch has been delivered and needs to get spread.

And after putting it off for too many years, we are finally having the exterior of the house painted.


And given my color commitment issues, picking colors for the outside of the house is killing me.

We're pretty close though.

And the painter comes tomorrow to set up the staging.

Guess we need to decide.

Thinking the main part of the house is going to be either Benjamin Moore Jackson Tan or Alexandria Beige.

Maybe we'll flip a coin to decide.

 I think that sounds like an excellent plan.

Or maybe I will ask my Magic 8 ball.  Even better plan.

potd #149.  Took this with my phone after visiting the paint store.  The big chip is the Jackson Tan.  Think the front door will be painted the dark blue, Hale Navy.  Trim will be a cream.  Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Flower Power

Went to a garden center today with my friend J today.

We bought lots of flowers.

And were very hot.

As in sweat a lot hot.

But, I got some really pretty flowers.

And we went to Sonic after.  The cherry limeade tasted especially good today.  As did the caramel sundae J talked me into.

I guess I will forgive J for talking me into going today and sweating way more than I was ever intending.

Aren't these mini dahlias pretty?  I believe they grow to about 14".  Just perfect for deck planters.

I bought some marigolds for the veggie garden.  They are supposed to deter animals. Hoping they work.  Especially since something munched on my zucchini and yellow squash last year.

Love these pink petunias.  So pretty.

I believe I will be planting them in a bit bigger pot to fit inside my garden chair.  I think the turquoise and pink will look great together.

potd #148.  A red mini dahlia.  Very pretty.  Can't wait to do my planting.

Monday, May 28, 2012

And The Countdown Begins

Ah, a wonderful long holiday weekend.

Warm weather.  Sunny skies.

Filled with family and friends.

A carnival Friday and a get together with friends Saturday night.

I think more adults toasted marshmallows than kids did.  The fire was perfect for toasting marshmallows.

I just love a toasted marshmallow.

Last night we enjoyed a wonderful cookout at my Sissys' celebrating my nephew J's 21st birthday.

We also celebrated J's girlfriends', P, birthday.

Yummy burgers and side salads.  And there's nothing that says summer bbq like having some baked beans.  Yum.

And the cake was an Italian Fruit Cake.  Light yellow sponge cake with strawberries, peaches, and whipped cream.  Super yum.

My Dad and Nana were there too.  It's nice to get together as a family.  Especially when you can get 4 generations together.

It was a wonderful night.

Our weekend was fun-filled.  And yard work filled.  Just the right balance of both.

The girls swam a lot.  And they played a lot.

All 3 nights were late nights for the girls to go to sleep.

Last night they were in bed about 10:30.  E slept until 10 this morning.  Something tells me this is going to be the summer that E sleeps in a lot.

D woke up about 8am.  Always been my early riser, and probably always will be.

This afternoon we took the girls to see The Avengers.  It was good.  The girls loved it.

Before we went to the movies, Hubby & the girls tried to go rock climbing at the gym we have gone to before.  But, alas they were closed for Memorial Day.

I had stayed home to do some flower planting and go to the grocery store.

So, off to the movies we went and had a great time.

And now the wonderful, warm weather filled weekend is coming to a close.

And now more than ever am I longing for the lazy days of summer.

June 20th can't come soon enough.

23 more calendar days.

Only 17 more school days.

Plus we have a dance recital and piano recital to attend and a few more lacrosse games to play.

Busy, busy, busy.

And then the lazy days of summer are here.

Can't wait.

potd #147.  Painted my garden chair yesterday.  Can't wait to get a pot of flowers in it.  On the agenda for tomorrow.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Decoration Day

Happy Decoration Day.  Did you know that was the original name for Memorial Day?

Monday is a day in which we pause to remember those who have fought and died in our nations' service.

Here is a link to a website that has some wonderful information on the roots of Memorial Day.

It even gives the history of how red poppies became a symbol of veterans.  Very interesting.

One of my favorite patriotic songs is Lee Greenwoods' "God Bless The USA".
And I'm proud to be an American
where at least I know I'm free.
And I won't forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.

Today was the annual Memorial Day parade on our small town.  And on a day like today, I am just so happy to live in a small town.

There is just something about people lining our town Green getting ready for a Memorial Day parade.  And it was fun to see some friends also there for the parade.

Love small town living.

D&E posing for a picture.  D was in the middle of eating pretzels.  Hence the funny smile.  Snacks held us over til the start of the parade.

With a small donation, flags were handed out to the crowd.  

Love this car.  And the gentleman riding in the passenger seat is a former British POW from WW II.  And he has been knighted.  He used to come into the bank where I worked before I had the girls.  Such an interesting man.

The Governors' Foot Guard rode in the parade.  I believe our state has the oldest continuous working Governors' Foot Guard.  Over 230 years.  Impressive.

I just love the sound of bagpipes.  

And I love the sound of muskets being shot.  I love living in New England, with all of the Revolutionary War history all around us.

D looking down the road as part of the parade has passed us.  Love the flags that she is holding.  At some point in the parade, they got larger flags from some group that was passing them out.

It was a great parade.  

It felt good to take time out of our busy schedule to go to the parade.  We all decided that it was such a good time that we are going to make it a tradition.

I am thinking we will be making some fun family memories with this new tradition.

potd #146.  This is one of my favorite photos from today.  E in the shadows, waving the flag.  Love the white house in the distance with the flag bunting.  Picturesque.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Pre-Historic Plant

Did lots of yard work today.

It was hot.

There were a lot of weeds in the garden area.  And quite a few rocks in the upper area.

Boo weeds.  Boo rocks.

Some were easy to pull out weeds.

Others were very hard to pull out weeds.

As in, need a shovel to dig it out weeds.

This is one of those "need a shovel" to get weeds.  Seriously, these things are tough.

And wait till you see the root system.  I fought with these things all day.

I am pretty sure I won.  For now.

The real question will be tomorrow morning.  And whether I can get out of bed.

We shall see.

potd #145.  Yes this is the root system from one of those weeds.  A ginormous, really pre-historic looking root.  I think I will be fighting these weeds for a few years. Because on many of them I was unable to get the whole root system out.  So, these are my new nemesis in the garden.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Games, Rides, and Fried Dough

After tonights' lacrosse game, we headed to the carnival.

Every year on Memorial Day weekend, one of the churches in town holds a carnival.

The girls like to go.  They like to play games.  They see lots of friends.  They don't ride too many rides.

E thought about going on one of the bigger rides.  And then she decided the line was too long.

And really, all the lines were long for the big rides.  To say there were a lot of teens at the carnival is an understatement.

Of course, there were only 4 rides for the bigger kids.

The little rides didn't have very long lines.  So, they went on the big slide, walked through the fun house, rode on the rocket ships, and went on a teacup-like ride.  They were happy.

Hubby & I were happy because that used up all our tickets.

I was really happy because I got my fried dough.  I love fried dough.  Mmmmm.

Lights for the slide.

Yes, there are people in that oval cage.  And there is another oval cage on the other end of the arm.

Hubby is always examining the rides when we go to carnivals.  He's funny.  He is pretty convinced that they are all death traps with bolts just waiting to fall off and have the ride come apart.

I can't say that I disagree.

I am sure that they do a good job to make the rides safe.  They just look a little sketchy.

Stuffed animals just waiting to be won at the Whack-A-Mole game

Ran into my friend R and her daughter S near the cotton candy booth.  They were getting some cotton candy to go and then were headed home with her hubby and son, M.

Candy apples.  I like the idea of candy apples, I just don't really like the taste.  And they are hard to eat.  And sticky.  Guess I just like to look at them and not actually eat them.  In case you were wondering.

D about to throw darts at balloons.  She was so cute.  She won herself a small stuffed dolphin and then she wanted to try again so she could win E a dolphin too. She did and was so happy to give it to E.

E then played and won herself a little bit bigger dolphin.  And wanted to play again. This time she won a small stuffed bear, which she immediately handed over  to D.

Sweet Sissys.

Love the stuffed animals.

The swings.  E thought about going on.  Then she thought again.  Mostly because the line was long.  She's not very patient.

It was a good night.  A fun start to a holiday weekend.

potd #144.  The scoreboards for the Whack-A-Mole game.  Didn't realize it at the time, but I caught E's reflection.  She is wearing her pink sweatshirt.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I Love Lucy

Lucy is our 2 year old Golden Retriever.  She will be 3 in October.

Before we had Lucy, we had Maggie.  Maggie was a sweet dog.  She was 10 when she died.

To say that Hubby and I were devastated the day Maggie died would be an understatement.

She was our first baby.  So to speak.  She was a good dog and I still miss her.

We lasted about a month without a dog in the house.  And it was too quiet and lonely.

I especially missed having a dog in the house when Hubby would travel.  Then, the house was even quieter.

So after a month we, mostly I, started looking for a dog.

I had always wanted a Golden Retriever.  I found some puppies, but they were crazy expensive.

And then one day I was on my way to get D&E at school and I passed by a house that had a sign, "Golden Retriever Puppies for Sale".

I quickly slowed down and wrote the phone number down on a slip of paper.

I called Hubby to tell him and ask him to make the phone call.  Hubby wasn't entirely sure he wanted a Golden, so I had to tell him to just call and find out the info.

Once Hubby called and got the info, he called me back to tell me we were going to go look at the puppies a couple days later.

We talked about it together and decided that if we were going to go look, then chances were that we would be picking out a puppy.

I knew this because when we went to go for Maggie, we were supposedly only going to look.  Well, once I saw her there was no way I was leaving without her.

So for us, going to look at puppies means we will be picking one out to bring home.

Two days later, we go see the cutest 4 week old Golden Retriever puppies.  Seriously cute.

There were 7 of them.  We held each of them.

Finally, Hubby taps me and tells me I should hold the puppy he's been holding. "She's pretty sweet", he said to me.

And I held her and she was sweet.  And oh so cute.  As they all were, but there was just something about her.

And that sweet little pup became our Lucy.

Since she was only 4 weeks old, we had to wait another 4 weeks to bring her home.

We brought the girls to see her.  And they fell instantly in love.

Lucy is a good, sweet dog.  Even when she's getting in trouble tromping off to the swamp.

And she loves shoes.  Ever since we brought her home, she has always loved to lay with our shoes.

Silly dog.

"Don't mind me mom, I am just resting, keeping the shoes safe."

Lucy is just what a Golden should be: gentle, sweet, playful at times, cozy companion.

She has such a rough life.

Snuggling our shoes.  Laying on the couch next to me.  Playing catch.  Getting lots of pets.  Patrolling the kitchen island looking for a treat every now and then.  And sleeping, a lot.

"Do you really need me for something, because I am kind of busy right now."

Clearly Lucy takes her job of protecting our shoes very seriously.

I love her eyes.  

Sweet, sweet dog.  I am so happy that we have such a good family dog. 

D&E just love her to bits.  They love to cuddle with her and she loves to cuddle them.

She is so funny with them.  She watches them and if they start playing, especially with Hubby, Lucy wants to be right in the thick of it.

potd #143.  I love Lucy.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Off To Sing

Tonight was concert night at school for the girls.

Chorus concert.

D&E all dressed up.  I love the natural smile on D.

All the kids looked very cute tonight.  Nothing like seeing close to 100 3rd graders all dressed up together.

The girls all wore dresses or skirts.  The boys were in nice pants with most wearing button down shirts and ties.  Too cute.

My 3 favorite songs that they sang tonight were:  Old Joe Clark, Froggie Went a-Courtin', and The Cat Came Back.

I think we sang Old Joe Clark back when the girls and I took a music classes when they were younger, before they started Kindergarten.  It sounded vaguely familiar and I recognized most of the lyrics.

Froggie went a-Courtin' is one of my favorite kids songs.  It was on a cd that we had by Laurie Berkner.  It was always a favorite.

I also think that Laurie Berkner did a version of The Cat Came Back.

It was easy to see which songs were the kids' favorites tonight.

When they sang loud and enthusiastically, that song was a sure favorite.  Soft, quiet singing generally meant they thought the song was just ok.

And of course, there were more girls than boys in the chorus.

It was good to see the boys that were there tonight.  Just about all of them are sweet, kind boys.

All in all, a great concert and fun to watch.

Yet another sign that the school year is winding down to a close.

A little sissy love before the concert.  Love the lip puckering.

 potd #142.  My beautiful daughters.  Looking way older than I am ready for them to be.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Isn't She Lovely

It has become our habit with D&E to play music for them during their shower.

It's a great way to open them up to some different music than what they hear on the radio.

Our staples for shower time are:
Norah Jones
Beastie Boys
The Beatles
Stevie Wonder
The Buena Vista Social Club

They like all of the above.  And it's quite a variety of music.

If you haven't listened to Buena Vista Social Club, you must.  They are simply fantastic.  Great Cuban music.

Here is one of our favorites.  D loves The Buena Vista Social Club so much she keeps asking me to put it on her ipod.

If you listen to any new music this week, go listen to Buena Vista.  You won't be sorry.

It is quite funny to watch both girls dance to this while in the shower.  Very funny. Let's just say, they've got some moves.

E loves Beastie Boys.  Specifically "No Sleep Til Brooklyn".  Usually when it's her turn to pick music, it is always Beastie Boys.

She's got some moves too.

Here's "No Sleep Til Brooklyn".  Can't hear this song without thinking of E.  Love that.

Tonight as D was getting ready for her shower, she says to me "We haven't listened to Stevie Wonder in a long time, mom."

Well, how about that.

I just love that my 8 year old knows, appreciates, and loves Stevie Wonder music.

One of D's favorites?  "Sir Duke".  Enjoy.

Music has always been a big part of the girls' life.

Here is Hubby playing guitar for D when she is about 2 months old.

Ever since I was pregnant, he has been playing for them.

He actually picked D's name from a song.  I did not like the name when I first heard it.  I was convinced it was a boys' name.

But then he kept playing it.  And I really listened to the lyrics.  Sure enough, it was a song written for a girl.

So, Hubby won me over.

And now, I hope that they will someday dance to that song together at D's wedding.

And I will surely cry.  A lot.

It's fun to have music as an integral part of our family life.

And there is nothing like a good old-fashioned dance party during shower time.

Good memories being made.

potd #141.  There are 2 nests on the backside of our house.  One in the elbow of a gutter and the other in a large lilac bush.  Not sure which one this bird is watching over.  I think it's the one in the lilac bush.  Hope we can get a glimpse of the babies at some point.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Lunch Out With Nana

Today was a great day.

My Nana is back from being in Florida for the winter.  She's 95, going on 96 in September.

She, my dad, and my Uncle T(who owns the house at the Cape) all came back last Tuesday.

It's good to have them back.  Although I didn't get to see UT before he headed to the house at the Cape.

Living near us is a new thing for my Nana this summer.

Previously, she lived with my Aunt N(my dads' sister) in the city that my dad grew up.  In the house that she had lived in for almost 50 years.  About 1 1/2 hour away from where we live.

Very suddenly and sadly, my Aunt N passed away last October.

My Sissy wrote a wonderful wonderful blog post the day Aunt N passed.  It still makes me cry every time I read it.  The pain of losing someone you love can be so sharp at times.

So, after losing Aunt N it was decided by my Dad and his 2 brothers that Nana would spend the summer with my Uncle and Aunt who live about 15 minutes away from Sissy, me, and my Dad.

And during the winter, she would live with Uncle T in Florida.  Fortunately, my Dad, Uncle T, and Aunt N had all bought condos within a 1/4 mile of each other.  Uncle T and Aunt N's condos were in the same complex, just different buildings.

And so, now Nana will be living just 15 minutes away for 5 months of the year.

Today was the first opportunity that Sissy and I had to get Nana and take her out for a bit.

Our 1st stop was at CVS so that Nan could get some cards and a few other things.

Then it was off to Restaurant 99 for lunch.  And we had to be firm with her that she wouldn't try paying for lunch.

This after she tried to buy my & Sissys' few items at CVS.  Silly Nana.

We told that when we took her out over the next few months, we would be treating her.  No ifs, ands, or buts.

And I will tell you she really didn't like us telling her that.  She has a bit of stubborn in her.  Guess I know where I get my stubborn from.

I am sure that this won't be the only time we have to tell Nana that we will be treating. Remember, she's stubborn.  Cute as a button, but stubborn.

It was just wonderful to spend the day with her.  No matter how old I am, I always feel like a kid when I am with her.

She also gives great hugs and kisses.  Nothing like getting a hug and kiss from your grandmother.  Even at my age.

I look forward to being able to spend more time with her this summer.  And I really look forward to the memories my girls are going to make with her this summer.

Nana is always good for a game of cards, or 2 or 3 or 4, with the girls.  And they love playing with her.

Here is a picture of D&E with Nana at her 95th birthday party last summer.

And because I was so busy having such a good day with Nana, I almost forgot to take any pictures today.

Just as I was starting to lose light, I snagged D to come outside with me for a couple pictures.

Sweet D.  I love the freckles that are coming out on her face.  Just like me.  Just like Nana.

Love this girl.  Can't believe they turn 9 in a month.  Yikes.

D's new sparkly shoes.  My girls are giving me fits right now trying to buy shoes for them.

I have just about given up on getting E shoes other than flip flops or sneakers.  E is right in between sizes.  Bad for shoe buying. Yet I keep trying.  And keep returning what doesn't fit.  Oh well.

potd #140.  My feet and D's feet.  Not much longer and we will be sharing shoes.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Opening Day

No, not for baseball.

It was opening day for the pool today.

The weather has been gorgeous the last couple days.  Just gorgeous.

Bottle up and keep gorgeous.

And now the pool is open for the summer.

Ahhhhhh, summer.  I just love the lazy days of summer.

An open pool is a happy pool.  And a newly open pool brings the promise of summer fun.

I love summer fun.

E dipping her feet in the newly open pool.  It was a bit cold.  But not too cold for an eager 8 year olds' feet.

Surprisingly, the pool was not green.  Hubby was able to get just about all of the leaves off the top of the cover before we took it off.

And while we were taking it off, we did pretty good not dumping what was left on the cover into the pool water.

This weeks' weather looks quite nice.

The girls are hoping that it will be warm enough to swim next weekend.

I am pretty sure they will be getting into the pool no matter what the water feels like.

And with the pool looking so good to start, I am sure that Hubby will have it crystal clear by the end of the week.

E giving me a little smile.  She was tolerating me.

D&E have 4 full weeks of school left, plus 2 1/2 days.

With our busy schedule of dance recital, lacrosse games, piano recital, and my niece K's high school graduation, I am thinking those 4 weeks are going to go by pretty darn quick.

Can't wait.

Summer's looking pretty good right about now.  Long, lazy days of summer.


potd #139.  E scoping out the pool.  Planning her many hours of swimming in the months to come.  She is convinced that she is tall enough to jump straight into the middle of the pool.  I am sure it will be one of the 1st things she tries to do next weekend.