Week Recap–St. Louis

Now it’s been two weeks since our vacation, and I still haven’t posted any info: We overnighted at Aunt Connie’s. We squeezed in quite a bit while we were there. Connie grilled out for us, we slept, had breakfast sandwiches, read stories, hung out on the deck, “watched” Happy Feet, went for a walk & Connie made a casserole, we played at the park, all in about 18 hours.

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What a weekend!

I have to say: My love tank is FULL. What a wonderful weekend.

Saturday it was cool and rainy. It was the first rain we’ve had essentially all month, which put Kevin in a good mood and gave him an excuse to take the day off. He was teasing me that every 1/4 inch is worth thousands of dollars.

We went to some furniture stores. I didn’t think think we would actually buy anything, but he got me a new rocker recliner to replace the hideous green inherited one we’ve had forever, and a storage hutch for our entertainment/play room, which has no storage whatsoever. We got to bring the hutch home with us, and its drawers are already full of movies and toys. I have to figure out how I am going to organize the rest of the stuff. Plus that got us motivated to get rid of some random pieces of furniture up there that were just in the way, and not serving any purpose.

Sunday we went to church with the folks and Connie. We went out for brunch and to the park. We stopped at Home Depot and Kevin got some drywall stuff to start the process of fixing up the “hobbit room” into a reading nook. It’s just this little tiny room that used to be called the harness shop between our entertainment/play room & the upstairs hallway and bedrooms. I have visions of a cozy little reading spot for the girls and me. We’ve even discussed the possibility of tube lights, which would bring in natural light through the attic.

Then we went for a nice long bike ride, with our “new” double bike trailer.

Normally, I don’t really care for bike riding, because according to other people (not according to me!) I’m a really slow rider. I like doing it for the social aspect and get a little exercise at the same time; I’m not out there to win the Tour de France.

Plus I talked to both my sister and brother in the same afternoon. We’re having an all family campout coming up in June, and neither one is going to be able to be there! But I still had a nice unhurried visit.

Then we had the in-laws over for a hot dog roast in our fire pit. It was a gorgeous evening to be sitting out on the lawn. The flies weren’t too bad, and when you have cattle, flies are a constant disgusting battle.

Monday we meant to go to a Memorial Day service, but just got there in time for the jet flyover. We grilled out burgers and played over at the folk’s and after I got Brielle asleep, we took our “new” boat out for its inaugural voyage.
The first time Kevin threw his line in, he brought out a fish! We mostly just brought the poles along for looks; we hadn’t really planned on catching anything, but he ended up catching two. Oddly, the lake his folks live on has a rule that you can only keep fish 12 inches and under, and they were both too big. Connie wasn’t much for the fishing part. It was great to be mellow out on the water.

We hung out until A went to bed over there. Kevin and I came home and watched, of all things, the Miss Universe pageant. Never having watched one of these pageants before, it was oddly intriguing.

All in all, a fantastic weekend.

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Oops!…or maybe not!

I love my clothesline. As soon as it is warm enough in the spring, I am out there, letting my clothes dry in the breezes. Yes, it takes a while. Yes, I sometimes find fly specks or bird doo on them and have to re-wash. Yes, it isn’t good for my allergies.

I love it anyway.

I hung out two loads of laundry this morning, and all three lines were completely full. Not a spare clothespin to be had.

It’s May 25th and we are waaay below normal rainfall, so much so that the beans were just laying in dusty brown dirt, and even I was beginning to watch the weather intently.

The weather people had been predicting rain at least three times a week all month, and all we’ve ever gotten was a couple of tenths of an inch.

Kevin casually mentioned, amidst bathing the muddy baby and making dinner, “Don’t forget the clothes on the line.”

Can you see where I’m going with this?

It started raining three hours ago and it continues still. Maybe my forgetting the clothes somehow conjured up a good drenching. Unlikely, but nevertheless, I’ve never been so glad to re-wash clothes!

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Friday Five or Fewer

1–In her not quite awake state early this morning, Aviana wet the bed for the first time in a long time, and when I went to take the sheets to washing machine, they were so wet I dripped peepee almost all across the kitchen before I realized it. She followed up with a tantrum when I wiped her clean with a warm wet washcloth, and wouldn’t settle down or apologize for well over an hour.

Bad start.

2–Kevin offered to keep the girls for a few hours this morning, so I could finally get unpacked, get the clothes washed and dried and some folded, clean up the kitchen and other sundry chores. Later, while Brielle napped, Aviana and I planted from seed and then watered (each with our own watering can) some sunflowers, Mexican sunflowers, and poppies. I’m skeptically optimistic.


3–After lunch, I took Brielle over to Grandma’s, and Aviana and I met a friend for some garage saling. I found a couple of fun deals, but we did pass on the used bras and bustiers, a pair of shorts with “Bite Me” across the bum, decorative cups filled with Q-tips, half full bottles of fingernail polish, and Lord of the Dance on VHS. We laughed and laughed.

The kids weren’t enjoying our outing nearly as much as we were. At one point her four year old bumped his leg. Through his tears, he managed to croak out a pitiful, “I don’t think I can make it to any more sales.”

Better yet!

4–Ruth invited Aviana to stay with her while I ran a few errands, free as a bird (except for my left breast painfully insisting it was time to feed Brielle, who was twelve miles away). Then when we went to pick up Brielle, Grandma invited Aviana, who had been a perfect angel all day, to stay the night. I got the groceries and other purchases hauled in and mostly put away, dinner made, some flowers planted, and some dirt eaten (oh, wait, that last one was Brielle) and everyone involved was still all smiles.

And we found out my grandma is giving each of her grandchildren a savings bond that is maturing this year.

Even more so!

5–At day’s end, I found myself laughing and laughing, loving everyone around me, singing to myself, skipping a little bit. Maybe it was the cup of coffee with my new limited edition blueberry cobbler creamer. Maybe it was time spent with a dear friend. Maybe it was my dear sweet husband taking care of me the best way he can. Maybe it was God, saying, “Here sweet girl, rest, laugh, love. I’m here, I’ve got you. Don’t buy someone else’s Q-tips.”

It got better.

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Some people…

are so cute!

Kevin is the chairman of the County Office Committee at the local FSA office (Farm Service Agency). It was his turn to bring treats to the monthly meeting. I made a Wonderful Upside Down Rhubarb Pie**, which Kevin said brought rave reviews from the spoiled (the last guy’s wife made a blueberry dessert and a chocolate pie) old men on the committee. He brought home the pie pan, but, we discovered this morning, forgot the pie cutter.

This afternoon we get the following message, “Hi, Kevin and Jessica, this is Jessica down at the FSA office. I was just calling to tell you we have your pie cutter. I washed it, but forgot to put it back with the pie pan. So don’t worry Jessica, WE HAVE THE PIE CUTTER. If you have time to stop out and pick it up, that’s great, otherwise, we’ll have it for you at the next COC meeting. We’ll have your pie cutter here.”

I just thought how she phrased her message, and that she thought to call and assuage my ‘worry’ was so sweet and cute.

**Jessica’s Wonderful Upside Down Rhubarb Pie**
4 c cut up rhubarb
1 c sugar
2 T flour
Mix together, put into pie pan. Dot with 2-3 T butter.

1 C flour
1/2 C sugar
1 t baking powder
1/4 t salt
2 large eggs (beaten)

Mix with fork until half doughy and half crumbly. Sprinkle over rhubarb, shake pan to even out. Bake at 350ยบ for 40 minutes.

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Gardening, and what it is to me

My veggies wilt and sigh

and my flowers always die

But with trowel in hand

I take a stand

and every year I try

Looking at “Birds and Blooms”

Leads to flowers that are doomed

Because unfortunately I forget

Water is an important little bit

Thus dry are my plants’ tombs

Backyard Living” I religously read

I carefully choose every seed

From poppies to daisies,

I make myself crazy,

Because then I forget to weed

So even though I’m bummed

and I feel pretty dumb

I’ll have to lay my hoe up on the shelf

and reluctantly resign myself

To the fact I don’t have a green thumb

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