First of First and Third

Another first day of school.

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Another night before madly trying to finish up their matching first day of school outfits.  I will so miss it when this matching phase is over.

Of Strength and Staggering Beauty

This state of ours has a mighty lot of beauty put on display, but some of her most spectacular beauty is secreted away.  This weekend we happened upon one of her secrets.

The secret whispered its way into the world as we climbed through the rain and clouds into the unbelievable blue up above.

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The trail is not well travelled.  Perhaps it is because it is a little bit higher than those that are and a little bit tougher.

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Or maybe the beauty that dazzles in the beginning is enough to convince most that what is to be seen has been seen.

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But stay the course and there will be so much more to behold.

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Queue the moment before I realized we should have hiked it clockwise.

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1,200 feet of steep elevation gain.  Here’s to walking sticks and mountain goat like children.

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And here’s to what we found at the top.  If only you could see what we saw.  I think we might have found Narnia.

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If only…

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They are strong.  They are tough.  They are mighty.

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And they are done.  For now.

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The Adventurer’s Reward

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Secrets and Slides

They end of school is near and we thought we might beat the pending crowds and sneak down to the coast this weekend with a visiting Aunt Stinky.  How luck are we that this is an hour and a half away?

We hiked a little hike at a beach revealed with residency and kept secret via blood oath.  Or something along those lines.

The hike was a little muddy.  A lot pretty.

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And maybe a bit dodgy in places.  We do good mud out in these parts.

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And it had really, really good trees.

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Mama doesn’t climb in tree holes.

This close to the coast, everything brown is covered in green.

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Glorious country.

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Three Falls, a Fairy and a Spill

We used our Memorial Day to go reconnect with the outdoors after a long stretch of rain, taxes and even a bit of snow.  After a wet start, which actually was a blessing in that the crowds were a couple hours behind us because of it, we could not have asked for a better day to go see three of our local waterfalls.

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dirt + water + tired legs = 2 very happy children

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The spruced up a fairy house.

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And put me to shame with their endurance.

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And rescued a water bottle that might have been launched over the side (by me).

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They learned what a wild ginger flower looks like.

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And lucked into the best lunch seats in the house.

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Then there was the matter of the damaged bridge that required one of us to cross at a time.  Eek!

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I wish you all could hear this picture.  Nature’s wind chimes.

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Waterfall number two we got to see from behind, which was really quite amazing.

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And waterfall number two eventually became waterfall number three, which was really quite enormous.

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Mother nature goodness.

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PS  The spill was the wee one.  Note the two different color pant legs.  Mountain run off, not so warm.

The Happiest Place on Earth

A funny thing happened on the way to school two Fridays ago.  And by funny, I really mean awesome.

Excuse me while I reach up and pat myself on the back a couple times for keeping this one under wraps.  Oh the efforts a mama will go to.  So worth it!

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Because I am pretty sure they did not stop smiling the entire weekend.

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I feel like there is a lot of money in store for the person who builds an iPhone case with a flattering filter on the lens facing you.  Or maybe it is just that I have no idea how to take a selfie.

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I am sure the kids know how.  Probably should have run that one by them.

Queue the big rides because the little ones just wouldn’t do after they were introduced to Splash Mountain.  Speaking of little ones, I would like to take a moment to thank my youngest for shooting past 48 inches immediately prior to the big trip.  Funny thing, though.  On day one she was just barely over 48 inches, but by day three she was more like 49 inches.  Bless her determined soul.

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Speaking of our littlest member, it would seem that all of the excitement brought the return of her borderline narcolepsy.

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Please note how her hands were lovingly moved close to her body by her most attentive mother so they wouldn’t get crushed by the Fantasmic crowd.  The same most attentive mother who let her youngest child take a quality snooze on concrete.

Day 2 it became apparent that there was no harm from the most attentive mother incident.

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Ready, set, DISNEY!

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Konjo

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Peeplettes

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Introducing Scarlet and Chicklette!

Puggle Playdate

He may not be a smart dog.  Or a particularly good dog.  But I can not imagine a dog who could ever love these two girls more than him.

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Lazy Crafternoon

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A Chicken on Every Stove

I am not sure this is what Hoover had in mind back in his day.

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I think a new chicken keeping chapter is upon us.  Our older four are probably entering into their senior years and one of them, bless her, has lost her damn mind.  This would be that one.

Before the holidays she took to attacking me at random and often from behind.  It was nothing personal.  She was an equal opportunity hater, chasing her feathered family quite ferociously as well.  Unfortunately she learned the hard way that top hens do not have a lot of patience for dementia.  Kiwi (our top hen) has always been so mellow, but boss lady bird lost her cool big time when the unprovoked maulings began and left some pretty serious marks.

Despite swearing to a few friends that I would not shed a tear should she pass on, guess who rescued her and spent a ridiculous amount of time cleaning her up, feeding her and warming her up on the stove.  Okay, that last part sounded bad.  I had bread in the oven.  Hence the warm stovetop.  There was no cooking of the senile bird.

The good news is that the weekend rescue seems to have mended our relationship for now.  She now appears to recognize me and I have not been jumped from behind by the grumpy old bird since it happened.  Could be that her eye is still recovering and she can’t see me all that well, but I will take it.  The bad news is that there are three other birds her same age and I have no idea how common it is for birds to lose their cognitive abilities as they age.  Could make for an interesting few years.

Suc-chess

Who knew that they knew how to play?  Not me.

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Harry Potter Parenting

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Better than the cupboard under the stairs, I suppose.  Oh wait

The Napping Hour

I feel a little bad about the napping hoodwinkery in our house.  The feeling is quite similar to the pang of guilt I have every time the quickly approaching 8 year old straps herself into her five point carseat.  But not so big a pang on either front as to actually change anything.  I heart nap time.

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Seed Sorting

Spent a little time out in the yard addressing the winter weeds today and I caught the spring seed bug.  So tonight I sorted, culled and readied the seed box (and calendar) for spring.  Hope springs!

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Unfortunately so do some crazily robust winter weeds.  Really thought our epic cold snap would have bailed me out of the winter weed problem, but not so much.  Oh well.  Looks like I have until the end of next month to address the mutant weeds to make way for the seeds.  Based on the itty bitty amount of progress today, I am going to need every minute I can get.  I really need to stop forgetting the corn gluten.


Mid February
Tomatoes (in)
Galina (cherry)
Snow White (cherry)
Red Fig (cherry)
Black Prince (slicer)
Gold Medal (slicer)
Italian Heirloom (slicer/saucer)
Jaune Flammee (slicer)
Super Lakota (slicer)
Ceylon (slicer)
Brown Berry (cherry)
Black Plum (slicer)
Lemon Drop (cherry)
Blush (cherry)
Black Cherry (cherry)
Stupice (slicer)
Egglplant (in)
Diamond
Pandora Striped Rose
Peppers (in)
Jimmy Nardello (sweet)
Stocky Red Roaster (sweet)
Czech Black (hot)
Late February
Peas (out)
Maestro (shelling)
Sugar Ann (snap)
Mid March
Spinach (out)
Bloomsdale Long Standing
Viroflay Giant
Beaujolais
Chard (out)
Golden Chard
April
Carrots (out)
St. Valery
Rumba
Herbs (out)
Giant Italiian (parsley)
Pokey Joe (cilantro)
Spearmint
Darki Curly (parsley)
Beets
Edmund’s Blood
Bull’s Blood
Melons (in)
Blacktail Mountain (watermelon)
Prescott Fond Blanc (cantaloupe)
Winter Squash (in)
Long Island Cheese
Musquee de Provence
New England Pie
Galeux d’Eysines
Sweet Meat
Black Forest Kabocha
Winter Luxury
Lettuce (out)
Sanguine Ameliore
Forellenschluss
Pablo
Grandpa Admire’s
Little Gems
Mascara
Flashy Butter Oak
Italienischer
Flashy Trout’s Black
Speckled Butterhead
Australian Yellowleaf
Les Orielles du Diiable
Kale (out)
Black Tuscan
Savoy Cross
May
Summer Squash (out)
Costata Romanesco (zucchini)
Bennings Green Tint Scallop (patty pan)
Yellow Crookneck
Dark Star (zucchini)
June
Corn (out)
Tuxana
Bean (out)
Calypso (dry)
Flageolet (dry)
Ireland Creek Annie (dry)
Marvel of Venice (wax)
Fortex (snap)
Scarlet Runner (runner)

The Reading Circle

Big to little.

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Little to big.

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To each her own.

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For Me

Although it was a lighter than usual holiday sewing season for me, there has still been a rather long string of projects for little people recently.  Including my very first venture into little boy clothing for my nephew.  Sweetness.

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Today I broke said string and made something just for ME!  I love it.

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And it is reversible!

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Dear Mom,

I promise that I will iron it.

Love,

Me with the new purse(!)

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Happy Newness!

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Another Year Gone

I feel like 2013 slipped through my fingers.  And I have regrets.

I regret not writing more.  There are moments that should be memories that are lost.  And others that are but wisps of what they should be.

I should have written about Gator’s first school aged parent teacher conference.  I should have captured the memory of the little tiny chair I was sitting in when I was able to package up a lot of worry and file it away with those other old worries about a failure to thrive, apraxia of speech and other fretful things.  My youngest is mighty.

Moments were lost that should have been captured.

I regret not minding my balance on the stairs.  I do hereby confirm the old adage about the bigger falling harder.

I regret spending too many evenings working.

And too few evenings connecting with those I care about.

I regret the too shallow patience pool I had this year.

And the too quick remote control trigger finger of 2013.

But most of all, I regret living in the regret.  And in future worry.  For all we truly have is the moment we are in and our moments should not be regretted or fretted away.

I will not dwell on these regrets.  I have learned from them.  And hope to one day thank them for the person they will have made me.  Made us.

Here’s to moments!  Ours.  Mine.  Yours.  And there were some really, really amazing moments this past year.  Here’s to even more in 2014!  For us all.

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Flight of the Papayas

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