29 July 2011

While My Mandolin Gently Sleeps and 'Parkles

My "to do" list is long, long, long and I don't mind because I like lists. I also like to occasionally whittle down my lists. So, I think posting some of my goals to my blog might nudge me to take some action (or not). Case in point, that little flash mob thingy that we participated in last month. While that sort of thing was never a goal of mine (and neither is projectile vomiting) and I was ready to punk out right before we set out to perform, I was FOOLISH enough to post what we were doing to my blog and to FaceBook so I had witnesses and expectations. [Note to self: Keep your mouth shut! Also, never post fitness goals!] I hope everyone got a good laugh out of that experience. I know I did...

So anyway, I heard a song this morning that made me think about a goal I'd had long before I ever heard of a "Life List". It happened at a Rod Stewart concert several years ago; when I saw the mandolin solo in Maggie May I knew that I needed to learn how to play ASAP. Check out 4:22 on in this live performance. Doesn't that look like fun? (Of course Rod looks like he's having fun the whole time fluffing up his hair and bouncing around.). So I got a mandolin and thought about learning to play but that was it. [See also: my scrapbooking FAIL] I may have watched a training video with Scott (who is very musically inclined as is the rest of his family) but that's as far as it went. Oh SCOTT has picked up the mando a few times and probably knows how to play it by now (he plays the fiddle/violin and guitar also) but I am not even sure where it is right now. I'm guessing it's sitting beside the piano we bought off Craigslist a few years ago.

Sidestory: Our antique piano used to be in a Catholic church in Perry, OK and is over 100 years old. When we sought out to buy a real piano, Emi's piano teacher told me to ensure that each key worked. We drove to OKC and met with the very nice couple who said their daughter used the piano all through college and she got a music degree. We hit every key and each key worked (technically), so we loaded up the piano and were on our way for $375. Somehow we got the piano in the house (door frame never quite recovered) and placed the piano in a little nook in our office. I promptly set up an appointment with the recommended piano tuner to come by to tune the piano for $75. He hit a couple of the keys, looked under the hood and refused to tune the piano saying it needed to be restrung and would be a waste of time. I asked how much something that like that ran and he looked me in the eye and said "seven thousand dollars". Whoa! I fully expected the Dr. Evil pinky pose but he was serious.

We didn't get any other estimates to restring that piano, instead we opted to invest into a digital piano with weighted keys. We've discussed gutting the piano out and converting it into a wet bar. You can get the idea of what our piano looks like in this picture and you can also (possibly) make out my mandolin next to the guitar hiding on the left side of the piano.

The good thing about the mandolin AND the scrapbooking (AND the t-shirt quilt while we're at it) is that I can still come back to them when I'm ready.


Last night I was reading to the Little Ones and I took a break to let them pick out their clothes for today. David picked out his Duke t-shirt, basketball shorts and his sneakers. Aubri picked out a simple pink dress and her blue glittery flip flops. We got back to The Jungle Book when I noticed Aubri rubbing her thumb and index finger together (as one would do if one were to have recently picked a booger from one's nose like one has been found to do on occasion). I asked her what was in her hand. She tried to show me and said "it's gone". I asked what it was (in a slightly accusing tone) and she said "a 'parkle".  ???  I asked her to repeat because  it didn't sound like "booger" to me and she repeated "'parkle". I was still confused until I saw her 'parkly flip flops nearby and realized that one of her SPARKLES had come off onto her finger when she was playing her her shoe... and cue the cuteness.

27 July 2011

Good Things

If you've read my blog for any length of time or have seen my pictures on my Flickr OR if you actually KNOW me in real life, you know that I've gotten into a spot or two over the years when I have left Emi's braids in for too long. The new growth coupled with the shed hair and sand/product/etc locks her hair and it's a long, tedious process to comb out. The week after school let out I had started the process of taking out her micro braids and converting them into twists. It was starting to look cute but I never got to the back of her head. Fast forward to the last day of vacation in Florida and I was converting the twists back into micro braids because Emi had twisted them into something unrecognizable.  Once we were back home I worked on her hair for 2 evenings (slow progress) and then something wonderful happened!

Scott's co-worker, who has the same texture hair as Emi and the same feelings about going/staying natural, volunteered to help us out. (Bless her heart!) She is doing what I normally do, but much better and she is going to help us get Emi into the game of caring for her hair. I am excited! Between the 3 of us I think there's hope for my sweet baby girl. It's nice to hear the stories of her growing up with relaxers and making the choice to go natural a few short years ago. We can compare notes on products that work and also, she can teach Emi to make her own hair products (love that).

Stay tuned...

26 July 2011

On Our Way

This morning on the way to school we somehow got into a discussion about moms. I mentioned that I have TWO moms and this piqued the Little Ones' interests. I said that I had my first mom, their Lola and then when she and their PeePaw divorced I got my second mom, their MeeMaw....who is my stepmom. I saw the wheels turning in their minds and so I told them that Emi also had 2 moms -  her first mom, Cookie and then me, when she was adopted into our family right after she was born. I then told them that they also had 2 moms as well. Mama Bri - who is their first mom - and now me since they were adopted into our family last year.

Aubri then chirped that she was born in California.  David, not to be outdone, said that HE was born in California too. I told him that he was actually born in Oklahoma and that he moved to CA to live with his grandparents before Aubri was born.  He lived in CA for a short while before his little sister was born and that they moved back to Oklahoma after she was born.

We talked about each of them being in Mama Bri's tummy until they were born.  David asked "Is there a hole?" and I told him that yes, there is a hole where babies come out. Then he looked very concerned at me and said "I don't want that to happen to me!". I told him that he didn't have to worry about that, it only happens to girls who become moms, so it would not be happening to him.  What an inquisitive little boy! I hope his fears have been allayed (at least some of them) and that he understands a little more about his world.

We talk about each of our children's birth stories often so it's not a foreign concept. Aubri is so innocent and chirpy and accepting about the details of her birth and adoption because she was only 18 mos at the time we adopted her, but I think that David is still curious (and maybe skeptical) about the details of how he was born and ended up in our family.  He was 2.5 years old when they joined our family and had moved so many times in that short amount of time already. The things they were exposed to may be fuzzy for her but I am certain that David remembers it all. I told them that Mama Bri wanted them to have a whole family so she met with Dierdre at Deaconess and she picked us to be their new family. They may not remember that first meeting at the agency, but they do remember the next meeting at the park! Every time we go there for play or concert they say "Mama Bri brought us here!".

I let them know that while they don't live with their first mom, she still loves them very much. And the same with Papa Dave. They may be too young to fit the pieces together but not too young to learn about adoption-speak. And they need to always know that their whole family loves them no matter what (or where they live).

In the beginning we had a lot of visits with the birth mom to ease the transition but after a few visits it was obvious that the too frequent visits were 1) interfering with the children attaching to us and 2) keeping their birth mom from moving on with her life without the children. The visits were making me feel more like I was their step mom and I felt out of place in my own home, like I was the hired help - just there to cook and clean up after the party. Most of the visits were focused on what the birth mom needed or was going through instead of how the kids were doing and that was flat out draining for someone like me (co-dependent tendencies).  Each visit totally disrupted the boundaries, harmony and peace that we had established in our family. Frustration on top of potty training and disciplining and getting accustomed to new roles in the family (never mind sleep deprivation). So we decided to take a break...

It was a hard choice to take a half year break from direct contact with the birth mom but those bonds needed to be broken for our bonds to form. During this time period we've gotten to know the Little Ones' birth father and his wife and we just love them and feel blessed that we are all a part of our children's lives. The kids know them as family and they feel the love from them. They are a positive influence in their lives. We hope that after this extended break from their first mom, that we will have a simple, refreshing, positive visit with her soon.

* The picture above was taken 10 days before they were officially placed in our home. They spent the weekend with us and they slept together in a play yard. They came with diapers and sippy cups and today we are diaper and sippy cup free! (yay!)

25 July 2011


Last night as we were finishing up Breaking Bad we heard the oddest sound on the roof...a pitter patter of RAIN DROPS? I could hardly believe it! Earlier the weathermen showed a forecast of 100+ degrees all week with only a 20 or 30 percent chance of storms on Monday. I jumped out of bed to confirm and thought we must have been wrong because my cat was laying on the front lawn looking at me (like what?) through the window. Then we both looked at the streetlight and that's when we both realized it WAS rain! Hallelujah!

It didn't rain hard for very long but I fell asleep to rain drops! This morning when we let the dogs out it was misting a little too. At lunchtime when it's normally been 96 degrees already it was only 88 degrees today, and our leaky rain gauge showed that we got .25" of rain.  It's been overcast all day and a really welcome break from the oppressive heat.

Thank you God for the rain!

23 July 2011


Salty suffered the one casualty on the road back from Florida...

22 July 2011

Peace Be With You

I've seen this garden the past few mornings and it's given me some ideas for my yard... Instead of the Peace Path that I have been envisioning for a few years now, I'm thinking a Meditation Garden might be better. When I was wondering what to do about my Vitex/Chasteberry Tree/Shrub recently, I did some research and found I could propagate the cuttings from this tree. That would be a great way to share the color purple and this fragrant shrub with friends and family. I've done this with Passion Flower and Forsythia before successfully and I've tried (and failed) with my Camelia plant recently too. It's worth a try to cultivate such a beautiful plant to share.

This season has been so terribly hot that I am focusing ahead to next year and getting some plants rooted and established for 2012. I transferred my mom's Butterfly Ginger into a planter and also into the bed with my banana plants. Some gardeners in Oklahoma dig up their banana plants to overwinter inside but we choose to leave them in the ground to fend for themselves. We have 2 types in our back yard that have thrived and multiplied even with the harsh winters and summers of the past few years. Of course we don't get blooms/fruit so maybe we should dig up a few this winter to keep inside. I am curious to see if the ginger will do the same.

I am thinking the Meditation Garden could tie together the space west of our garden pond (FILLED with tadpoles currently) and Emi's neglected "M" herb garden. I would want to include a nice archway with a gate (remember, we have chickens) that I would cover with some of the trumpet vine we have growing around the yard already.  The goal is to create the garden from plants that I already have in my yard (or may be available through trade with friends).  Oh, I've got ideas while I am inside with the A/C on but those ideas evaporate like the sweat on my brow when I am actually outside these days.  Luckily I have lots of indoors projects to do!

What about you? What's inspiring you today?

21 July 2011

You Do What You Can

Can you believe how much the Little Ones have changed over the past year? I snapped a photo of them yesterday and was comparing it to a photo of them from last year this time. Whoa!

While we were away on our road trip to Florida last week Scott's aunt stayed at our house and lovingly took care of our home, pool, dogs, cats and chickens (and yard - our yard was MOWED when we got home! We LOVE her!). And there was food waiting for us when we rolled into town around 9pm. We felt spoiled for sure. I spoke to her while we were away and she told me that she has been enjoying the welcoming vibe at our place and commented that I was "so organized". I like to think I TRY but I am not quite there. I cleaned the house before we left but there are still so many areas (basement) that are in need of some deep cleaning and organizing (master bedroom) and some decorating (entire house) and energy management (drapes in the sun room). Our home is clean and livable but definitely not "white glove" clean at all times. Especially during the summer months when we'd rather be outside playing (or doing yard work).

When I called her to thank her profusely for taking care of our home and pets, she said she did not see how we did it with so much going on. Taking care of the house, pets, yards and pool. I told her simply that we don't get it all done. We do what we can and we're okay with that. Keep in mind that we had the kids with us! It's a full time job keeping the house spotless and we already have 2 full time jobs + kid + pets + yard + pool. Not complaining, but if you come to my house and see smudges on the glass doors, dirty floors or heaven-forbid, DUST on the bookcase or piano, please forgive. My house is lived in and I don't mop floors before pool parties because, ya know, they are going to get dirty from the in/out traffic anyway.

I have definitely gotten better at letting things go and saying it's good enough. My house, like my life, is a work-in-progress and accepting that helps me to not go crazy when I notice a bunch of crabgrass growing in between the bricks of our walkway when walking guests out to their cars after a particularly fun gathering. That's what's important to me, the FUN, not the overlooked weeds.

We were looking forward to having a couple of weekends of "free" time to take care of projects around our place (getting rid of that awful eyesore hot tub, taming the wild jungle that is our back drive, painting the fence in the back drive, cleaning out the pond, yada, yada, yada) but friends and family have "stolen" the next few weekends so those projects will have to wait. I can't complain because we are so blessed to have such wonderful friends and family.

David and Aubri started their new school this week and we have a new more relaxed routine (no more driving through rush hour traffic twice a day) and once Emi starts 4th grade in a month (I know!) we'll have another routine to get used to and I look forward to that and the cooler temps that Fall brings. Meanwhile, I could use a nap!

At the Beach (Part 2)

Siesta Key is about an hour Southeast of Ft. De Soto. We got to the  beach late afternoon after the naps and the big crowds.
Loaded Down
My sexy husband carrying the beach stuff:

Playing in the Sand

Getting Vincent Ready

Cool Sandcastle

No we did not create this sand castle but we did enjoy it while it lasted....

Testing Out the Sand

Daddy's Flip Flops

Siesta Key Beach Set

20 July 2011

At the Beach (Part 1)

We did the beach thing differently this trip and it proved to be a very good thing indeed. Typically we'd rush to get to the beach before lunch time - during the peak time - and we'd get fried and head home before sunset. Not this time. Perhaps it was the addition of two more to the mix or maybe we are old(er) and wise(r) but we opted to head to Fort De Soto after lunch and after the kiddos had had their nap. We got to the beach around 4PM when most guests had cleared out and left 3 hours later after we'd eaten, swam, explored and made new friends. Perfect time at the beach...

19 July 2011


"Lola" is Tagalog for "grandmother"....Lola's real name is Milagros, Mila for short. We have soooo enjoyed this time with her in Florida where it was so much cooler than Oklahoma. It was nice to drink beer, eat fish every night and karaoke! The kids had a blast and great memories were made. All 3 of my babies seem to have changed during this trip... matured just a bit? Maybe...

With their lola (is lola making the Camel Face?)

18 July 2011

The Big Easy

Whelp! We weren't there for long at all and I was not really impressed but I seem to have taken a lot of pics nonetheless.

Backstory: Scott and I were in New Orleans back in 1998 right after Hurricane Georges blew through. It was for a conference I attended so we took advantage of the opportunity and drove down together for a break before we started our first round of IVF. It was the best of times and the worst of times. Actually it was a fun trip but we felt unsafe much of the time in the French Quarter. I recall enjoying the Big Ass Beer place and I kept that cup for many years. We had a great meal at the Acme Oyster House but it was overshadowed by our nearly leaving our camera behind and also, once we stepped outside we saw a guy in a wheelchair emptying his colostomy bag into the street. That bag emptying embodied what I felt about being in the French Quarter.

So, anyway, back to our brief stay in New Orleans.

17 July 2011

Tadpole Invasion

This morning when I was checking out the back yard I noticed a lot of activity in the pond. Upon further investigation I saw that we had hundreds of tadpoles the size of my pinky finger and then a few the size of my thumb. I don't know if we have different breeds or batches of frogs at different stages of development or maybe even a plague....we shall see in the days coming.

Tadpole Invasion 2011 from Nolita Morgan on Vimeo.

Other Watering Holes

Our vacation didn't just include some really cool beaches...

Mom's Pool
Mom's "trailer trash" pool
And we also visited a nearby natural spring that is NOTHING like I remember as a child. It looked so much smaller (that's what she said!) and clearer. While the water was clearer than I remember, it still seemed dirty. Maybe it's because it was so crowded. We definitely preferred the beaches!

16 July 2011

Baycation Part 2

We got to see my cousin who left for PI the next day. (Hi Julie!)

Three Flips
We ate our fair share of Cuban sandwiches and cleaned sand out of the Disco a few times.

The Boys
What's up with the Zoolander pose, David?(Ft. DeSoto Beach)

15 July 2011

Baycation (Flip Flops Only) Part 1

Friends, we've been away on a vacation visiting my mom in the Sunshine State (in case you didn't catch that from my recent posts). This was once such a little place when I was a little girl and now it's the fastest growing city in Florida. It's close to the Bay but still has the charm of country life (i.e. quite a few confederate flags are displayed in front of the neighboring trailers). Her place is like a little slice of paradise where there used to be pastures and woods.

Lola's Pond
Lola's Other Pond

14 July 2011

Littlest Footprint

No, this post is not about my sweet little Aubri although she DOES have a tiny footprint. This is about my mom and her almost non-existent footprint. I don't think she throws away anything. Not that she recycles, she just keeps stuff... I don't want to call her a hoarder just yet, but we'll see. Now that she's retired she has the time to sort through stuff and "send it to the Philippines". We'll have to re-evaluate things next year. She spends most of her time in her beautiful yard keeping things looking like the islands so the house is like a giant 2-story closet. She has the critical path cleared to things she needs like food and restroom but not much else until we come to visit.

I won't post any pictures of the overfull closets or expired foods in the pantry that she won't let me throw out, but I will tell you that on one trip I went home with a Ronco "set it and forget it" Rotisserie and on another trip I took home a Magic Bullet.  I know...she likes to watch infomercials and I can only benefit from it, I'm sure. ;.)

On this trip she told me that a 12 acre area close to her will be chopped up into 48 homes soon.  I can only imagine what they'd do to her paradise if she was willing (she's not!). Instead of pictures of her treasures inside, I will share the beauty of place outside...

Cooler Here (It's been up to 111 degrees back home)
Cooler Here

13 July 2011


My mom has some wonderful plants growing in her yard and these are my new favorite. They smell like a very concentrated Gardenia bloom and I am in love!

Ginger (Smells like concentrated gardenia!)
Butterfly Ginger

Just Like Heaven

Best Place to eat an authentic Cuban sandwich, baby!

11 July 2011

Still Don't Trust the Quiet Ones

I don't know why I've been thinking about this lately but I have. 20 years ago when I was in college and before Caller ID was available to the public, there was a short concentrated time period when I got some pretty bad crank calls. I had an answering machine at the time and I was working a couple of jobs and in school full time so I was hardly home. But I would come home to several messages on my machine every day and they were from a girl with an asian accent saying "F**k you, Nolita". In truth, she sounded like a younger version of my mom. I would walk on campus looking at each female asian face thinking it was her calling me. I worked on campus and there were a lot of foreign exchange students but I didn't recall any run-ins with any of them.

I contacted the police who had me meet with a police detective who put a trap on my phone line. He instructed me to keep track of the date/time of each call from her and then after a certain amount of time we'd match up my findings with the phone company log. I gave the detective my machine tape and the log and later met up with him to discuss his findings. He asked if I knew any Vietnamese girls. I didn't, but one of my closest friends at work was a Vietnamese boy. He then told me it was my friend's girlfriend calling me leaving me the messages and that she had the mental capacity of a 6th grader. I was totally freaked out that it was so close to home.

I took the tape and met with my friend who had graduated college and moved on to another city by this time. I gave the tape to him and told him that he was dealing with a very unstable girl.  I asked if I had met her ever and he said that I had met her in the parking lot of my brother's apartments. He also told me that I had a class with her! A class that met 4 DAYS A WEEK! She just happened to be in Physics with me and of course when I went to class after that I was very apprehensive. Our awesome teacher used to do a segment he called "Viewer Mail" where we students could drop off questions about the homework and he'd go over them in class. He rolled out the mailbox and grabbed the first envelope and read "Please give to Nolita Stewart".

I don't recall learning a lot that day because I kept thinking about that note. After class I read the note in her broken English; she was apologizing "for anything she'd done wrong" like she accidentally parked in my spot and not purposefully called me hundreds of times terrorizing me. She asked me to meet her in the student union to talk and of course I said "No way" to that. I never did meet with her and I also did not press charges against her because the detective said her brother beat her pretty bad for what she'd done. My friend went on marry her at his dying dad's wish, then to divorce her after his dad's death and maybe went on to marry her again.....

I am so thankful that I was born in the U.S. and that my marriage was not arranged and that I had the freedom to grow into the person that I am...

10 July 2011

Flip Dolls

Meet Kaibigan (friend in Tagalog) and Marikit (lovely in Tagalog).
My mom brought these dolls back from the Philippines and they will have a new home in my book case. She also brought me another big fork/spoon set that will welcome my guests in the Gathering Room. I hope that someday my whole family will be able to travel to her homeland and experience PI. She's lived over here since she was 23 (she's now retired) and she goes back at least once a year. It's on my Life List to go and stay for a few weeks so maybe in the next few years....

09 July 2011

Life Grows On

Two years ago I planted a fig tree in my back yard after coveting the figs in my neighbor's yard. I seem to covet a lot of my neighbor's things, don't I?

Yesterday I was checking to see if my fig tree was thriving after that hilacious hail storm a few weeks ago and I got a little surprise:

A Fig!
A fig!
Another Fig!
Another Fig!
And when I checked on my Passionflower Vine I saw that it was grasping the wire trellis I made for it. There is still hope for a nice natural backdrop for the diving board...

Passionflower Thriving
Next summer this vine will add more purple to the yard...

08 July 2011

The Color Purple

I have a very fragrant Vitex (Chasteberry) Tree in front of my shed. I am not sure what to do with it right now. I have pruned it many times over the years and snipped the offshoots from the base of the tree but they keep coming back. I don't like that it's so huge and I've seen a few pretty specimens around my neighborhood, these have more shape and are much lower to the ground.

Scraggly (yet fragrant) Chasteberry Tree
I am thinking about pruning it heavily and letting the offshoots fill in making it more of a bush....what do you think? Can you picture it? I mean, look at how pretty the blooms are!

Gorgeous Flowers and Naughty Foliage
Speaking of blooms, I don't know if my English Lavender is past its prime for harvesting, but I harvested more and am making a couple more wands.

English Lavender
Past the Prime?

Harvested Lavender
Harvested Lavender (doesn't that sound so cruel)
I love having purple in my yard and feel blessed that I have any blooms at all in this heat wave! Hope you have some purple in your life too!

07 July 2011

R.O.C.K. in the USA (flash mob)

Ok, so here's the link to our infamous flash mob..enjoy!

Wasn't ALL Bad

The first part of the Fourth was a good time...before it got too hot.

Jackson and Aubrey
Jackson and Aubri

Cheddar Gets a Drink
Emi Helps Cheddar Get a Drink

Scott Helps Rylan into the Pool

A Good Thing
And of course there were cool beverages...

06 July 2011

Adventures in Zombieland

The past few weeks have been so busy and surreal or maybe it just seems surreal because of the extreme heat (100+ degrees every day for the last 2.5 weeks) and sleep deprivation. Whatever it may be, I am soooo ready for life to S-L-O-W D-O-W-N a bit. I am STILL trying to catch up on sleep lost from before our lake party last month.

I shouldn't complain because we did this to ourselves. Well, actually my dad did the lake party to us (we had planned on skipping the party this year) but every weekend since Memorial Day (including that weekend) is all on us.  We hosted gatherings in our back yard with lots of people and kiddos and hobos and WASPS!!!  Note: The flying stinging insects were out in force this past weekend so I am resolving to craft a pretty wasp catcher to hang AWAY from the pool and popular gathering areas of our back yard. It's hard to relax on a flotation device with my favorite beverage (Modelo Especial with a whole lime, please!) when the bees and wasps are constantly buzzing us. Of course it's also hard to relax when we have a house/yard full of guests and the temperature is 106 in the shade too...and the kids are awake...

This past weekend may have put me over the edge on gatherings for a while. Maybe a weekend or two of only seeing my family's faces around the casa will make me feel like socializing again. As for now, I am planning on laying low and taking it easy for a bit...

In other news, we donated Aubri's bed last week and moved her into David's old toddler bed. David upgraded to Emi's old twin bed (and he looks so small sleeping in the twin bed) and Emi is now upstairs in HER room (finally).  [A friend of my sister's needed a toddler bed so that was the impetus to get going on the move.] I also went through all of the kiddos' things and winnowed things down again. I took 2 big boxes and 4 bags of clothing/shoes/toys to the Salvation Army today. So glad to have that space free in the basement. The piles of stuff were mocking me as I was making my way through the piles of laundry on the other side of the stairs.)  From what I can tell, the new sleeping arrangements are affording the kids some quality sleep. Emi said she's had the best sleep ever upstairs (good for her!). Kirby likes to sleep in the Little Ones' room and Abbey likes to sleep upstairs with Emi. Kirby sometimes oversteps his boundaries and jumps up on Aubri's bed (the only bed he can manage to get up on) and she cries until we remove him. I think she likes the idea of him on her bed, but then he cramps her style.

Totally unrelated but worth a mention: When putting Aubri into her car seat last week she said to me "You look like Michael Jackson!" (Dear God! Is it the new shorter do or the bags under my eyes?  Either way, where's the propofol?)

* The photo above was captured last Friday when I picked Emi up...those clouds were a teaser!

    05 July 2011

    Independence Day

    Little Hippie Chick


    Us After the "Flash Mob" at the Park
    It was a HOT day and I think I would have been okay skipping most of it. The "flash mob" ended up being more like an "obvious glob" and we clumped together in 100 degree temps and tried to dance together. Before the show we practiced and got the moves down and Aubri decided to join us. She was going to dance in between me and Emi and just mimic what we did. In the end, Emi decided to dance in the front row (i.e. bailed on us) and they changed the direction we were to dance and Aubri and I ended up towards the frontish and Aubri mostly just stared at the littlest girls. If this were on my Life List I could cross it off but it wasn't; it was just something I wanted to do with/for my girls. Will post a link once I get it from the Parks Department. Should be good for a laugh...

    04 July 2011

    Block Party Reunion

    Last night we had a reunion of many of my childhood neighbors. A friend who lived up the street organized this reunion from her new home in Italy. It was at her brother's house and it was so nice to see so many from our childhood days. We got to meet her hubby and her new baby- Saverio - who is 5 months old. And a few others who live on the street still or nearby were there and we talked about who'd moved on or passed away or divorced. We reminisced about how we had the best block parties and how the food was perfect (it was perfect again tonight!).  We used to go sailing with my friend and her family and they would make these funny films with Jaws and Damien parodies to entertain us at the parties.

    One lady showed up and wasn't quite sure who I was and when I reminded her that I used to deliver her newspaper she gave me a hug and said she still had a pantyhose face doll that I sold her back then. It's funny because I don't recall selling one to her but I do remember selling one to another neighbor and they stuck it on their mantle (at least it was there when I visited them).

    It was great to see everyone now that we're all grown up and to see their kiddos. My kiddos went into full on "Hobo Mode" asking any adult in earshot to push them on the swings, give them Go Kart rides, chips, water, you name it. Everyone seems to be completely under their spell and I have to admit it that I am in awe. I guess they learned at a very young age to go ahead and ask for what they want...can't hurt. Might get them somewhere.... 

    Toe Touch



    02 July 2011

    Push Ups

    David's First Push Up

    Aubri's First Push Up

    Chickens Don't Get Push Ups (sorry)

    Not Pictured - Emi and her bud eating their Push Ups playing American Idol (Wii)

    01 July 2011

    A Lifetime Ago

    This photo is from twenty years ago when I worked on campus as a Student Analyst in the computer labs. A group came into the lab one day to get pictures of the staff (and lab) for the Administrative Affairs Annual Report and I just happened to be on duty in the Dale Hall Tower lab. I remember being in my station and the photographer asked me to move to a public computer to pose.

    This picture ended up in the report which I recently dug out of my bookcase after a co-worker and I were discussing that we used to work with a guy who was recently killed by a train. I was trying to get a mental picture of this guy because I only saw him a few times (I worked in the labs and he worked in the computing center) but no such luck. I did see pictures of people I used to work with though. My how times have changed!

    This picture evoked a lot of thoughts like:
    • Look at all that hair!
    • No more four eyes (Lasik 11 years ago)
    • Nail polish...ick!
    • Again, look at all that hair!
    • Tucked in plaid flannel shirt? (No doubt tucked into my bleached Guess jeans which were tucked into my Cole Hahn range boots. SN: I JUST threw those boots out this past year after leaving them outside for way longer than is recommended.)
    • Question: Where did that carefree girl go?  Answer: She's still here! (behind the furrowed brow)

    Random Pics on My Phone

    Imhoff Creek Flooding (Our Back Drive)
    Baby Girl Showing Off Schoolwork in 2nd Grade (She's now a proud 4th grader!)
    Emi's Nose Pencil Sharpener (found in my purse for some reason)
    U2's "The Claw" (of course)
    Snakehandling (getting heebie jeebies just looking at photo)