Wednesday, August 28, 2013

One Last Summer Hurrah and the First Day of School

The Zoo!!  Who doesn't love the zoo!  We all love the zoo!  So what better way to celebrate the end of summer but by a trip to the zoo.  The panda just gave birth, so we weren't able to see them, but we did get to see just about everything else.  You know what the great part about living so close to the zoo?  Not having to rush to cram it all into one day, but taking our time, seeing what we can see and knowing a return trip is imminent.

A zoo map cost $2...a picture is free.  We ended up caving and bought the app.  Well worth it!

Hope met Hope!

Elephants!  Love them!

Back to school!!  I'm sure there was not too many people in the house excited about school starting, but I'm sure we'll have the BEST field trips this year.  The key will be to not find too many.  Just as school was starting our Crepe Myrtle bloomed for the second time.  So beautiful!

A 6th grader?!  Not possible!!

3rd grade!  How did that happen?!

Our key verse for the school year on the window.

Isn't it beautiful?  I've checked the growing zone and it won't survive in Maine. Boo!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Summer in VA

Ohmyhotness.  I think I'm gonna melt.  Seriously.

I think we are settled.  I think just about everything has found a place.  There aren't any more boxes in the house...there may be a few in the garage, but the Jeep is in the garage.  It's a tiny one car garage that most people on the road have used as storage.  We have used it as storage too, but we have found room in the garage for a car.  That in and of it's self is a feat!  There is something known as "Parking Wars" around here...there are not enough parking spaces on our street so the battle is on to get a place for your second car if you don't have room in your garage.

Back to the hottness.  And humidity.  Have you ever walked out to your front steps and immediately felt like you were sweating, only to look down at your shirt and know you are sweating?  Yup.  It's very ladylike.  Mark and I were watching the 10:30 news one night to find out that in the city, at that moment, the heat index was 105.  105 at 10:30 at night.  I do have to confess though, I think I'd trade Maine blackflies for all the heat....maybe....I think.  I have not missed the Maine bugs.  I love sitting on our deck, on my Smyrna Amish made double glider in the mornings sipping on coffee.  We are lucky enough to back up to woods, so sipping coffee and watching birds are my favorite things to do in the morning.  I like it best when Mark is home and sits there with me.  I think we could solve the world's problems on that rocker each morning.

So...the events of the summer.  My parents offered to take the girls down to Florida with them for about a week, and that sounded wonderful...until they pulled away with the two most precious things in my life.  I won't lie...I cried.  And then I enjoyed myself.  Mark's cousin and his family, Daren and Kristie Seekins, along with Brittney and Katelyn came to visit.  Oh, so fun.  We went to Baltimore, stayed in a fancy-schmancy hotel (thanks Priceline!) down in the Inner Harbor, rode in a LIMO to an incredible Italian restaurant, had cannolis while watching a police chase (complete with a helicopter armed with a search light) and rented a small electric motor boat and cruised around the inner harbor.  It was the most relaxing things I have done in...well...since I can remember.  Here's some pics of that memorable trip and a few with the Seekins fam around DC and Mount Vernon:


The Girlzzzz

I love this lady!!

Can you say, "Christmas Card"?!

This is the Capitol Summer house.  It's a cool oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the city.  It was built in 1880 and is still in use today!  It's one of those neat little secrets.

The White House

FYI- it takes 3 people to wrap arms around the pillars at the Jefferson Memorial

The Washington Monument with the scaffolding and lights.  Repairs are being made to make the monument structurally sound after the earthquake 2 years ago.

Iwo Jima Memorial

I'm thinking Hope commandeered the camera at Mount Vernon Visitors' Center.

Brittany the Beautiful!

Hope and flax

Julia & Flax

Flax after

The mansion

Limo ride in Baltimore


Our little boat and the harbor.

Our view from our room

Breakfast or dessert?  I'm not sure, but I ate it at breakfast!
 The next day, Mark and I went to Annapolis, took in the sights and a meal of blue crabs before returning home.  Mark worked, I filled a few bag orders (I make bags out of uniforms...I think there is a link to my Etsy site in left column) and had much quietness.  I decided that I prefer chaos of having my family all together rather than the quietness of an entire week alone.

In the Capitol in Annapolis

Mark's blue crab.

We met up with Dad, Mom and the girls in Williamsburg and were able to not only visit Colonial Williamsburg, but Jamestown and Yorktown too!  What a great trip.  I got to celebrate my birthday at Williamsburg, so fun and so spoiled!

Birthday ever!
Williamsburg is an amazing place, I think I could go 50 times and still be in love!

Birthday lunch at one of the taverns in Colonial Williamsburg

The girls learning how to serve tea...something all proper girls their age would know how to do.  :)

Mixing clay for bricks...this is fun...
...but dirty!
My little colonial girl!

We had a HOT day at Jamestown, the girls sucked their Camelbacks dry!  I had never been there before, neither had Mark.  It was an amazing place, both the site of the original colony site and the battlefield.

Listening to the's just say, I'm glad that science and technology have progressed our medical care in they way that it has!

This sweet little fawn was in the bog area as we headed to the Jamestown Fort site

Yorktown was another place that neither Mark nor I had ever been to.  What a neat place it was.  Like Jamestown it had both a settlement area and a battlefield area.  I love places where the workers are in period garb and demonstrate the ways of the time they are in.

The girls are helping make the morning cornbread.

The cannon demonstration was so cool!!

A colonial game the girls got pretty good at!

Yorktown Junior Rangers!!

What a great trip!  I'm loving all this stuff that we get to see and be so close to!!  School will start very soon and it will be back to the grindstone for us girls.  School totally messes up our tourist ways!