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Monday, March 30, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 3/22/15 - 3/28/15

After being sick most of last week, I am starting to feel human again.  Today is the first day that I didn't feel like I got run over by a truck.  Keira was sick all last week also.  She had a fever that kept fluctuating.  It finally broke early Saturday morning. She's still not 100% but she is much better.  She went to school today, which is a good thing.  Everyone else is healthy, which is wonderful.

{March 22:  Leaves}
March 22:  Leaves
It was a challenge to find leaves this time of year - especially green ones - but during a walk at a local park this afternoon, I did just that. Soon the trees will be covered in leaves and spring will truly be here. 

{March 23:  Too much}
March 23:  Too much
This robin looks like it had a little too much for lunch.  :)
This photo got chosen as one of the FAB photos for the day! WOOT!

{March 24:  A treasure}
March 24:  A treasure
Alex loves looking for interesting things when we go for walks. He found this "treasure" on Sunday - a cluster of pine needles attached to a small pine cone. He said it looked like a peacock.  :)

{March 25:  Half}
March 25:  Half
Half of a Gerber daisy is pretty, but I prefer the whole thing.

{March 26:  I love ...}
March 26:  I love ...
I love that I got to spend a whole day at the zoo last week all by myself. Just me and my camera. It was simply delightful!
(Still not feeling well today so using a picture from last week. I hope to be back to "normal" soon!)

{March 27:  Something white}
March 27:  Something white
While Alex and I were out on our nature walk on Sunday, we came across our first wildflowers of the year - Snow Drops! I did my best to get a shot of them without laying on the wet, muddy ground. Thank goodness for Live View on my camera.   :)

{March 28:  Give}
March 28:  Give
Winter, indoor soccer ended today. At the end of the season the YMCA gives each child who participated a medal. I think Alex has 5 or maybe 6 now. He likes indoor soccer. Can't talk him into outdoor soccer though. It is just as well - I'm over soccer for a while.  :)

Linking with Tamar:

Keira came home from school early on Monday.  I was just starting to exercise and the school nurse called asking me to come get her.  She ended up being sick all week.  She's finally better today.
I stayed home from Wednesday night church since I was sick.  Not as bad as Keira, but still.
I started a new Bible study on Thursday morning.  I wasn't feeling great, but I didn't want to miss the first class.  It is a great Beth Moore study.
Saturday was Alex's last soccer game.  They had a small awards ceremony beforehand.  His team lost again.  I guess the only game they won this year was last week when Alex stayed home because he was sick.  I know it is all about teamwork and just for fun, but it is much more fun to watch when they are winning.
Saturday afternoon Alex went to a birthday party for a classmate from school.  It was a bowling party.  He had a great time.
Saturday night I went out to dinner with some girl friends.  I debated about going since I wasn't feeling well, but I went anyway and I'm glad I did.  It was a lot of fun.
Funny story - I misplaced my driver's license this week.  I took Keira to the doctor on Wednesday and when I went to get her insurance card out, I noticed it wasn't in my wallet.  When we got home, I went through my wallet and purse but couldn't find it.  I thought and thought about when I last had it out and just kept coming up blank.  I asked the Thursday morning Bible study ladies to pray about it.  Friday morning I woke up remembering that I took my license into the school on Monday to get Keira because sometimes the security guard asks to see it.  I rushed downstairs and checked my coat pocket and there it was!  I was so happy!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 3/15/15 - 3/21/15

Spring has sprung!!!

It seems I've waited so long to type those words!  We are still awaiting the spring-like weather.  It has been a bit chilly here and it even snowed on Friday - the day when spring officially began.  It didn't last long thankfully.  But we are on the upswing.  I have some seeds planted indoors in anticipation of butterflies this summer and many are starting to sprout.  Yay!

Anyway, here are last week's prompts from the Fat Mum Slim photo a day challenge:

{March 15:  Small}
March 15:  Small
This tiny seedling is small now, but soon it will grow into a big coneflower. Hopefully just in time for the butterflies to arrive and drink its sweet nectar.
I have started some seeds indoors this year. It is exciting to see new growth after the long, cold winter we have had.
This photo got chosen as one of the FAB photos for the day! WOOT!

{March 16:  After}
March 16:  After
After being disappointed that the polar bears weren't in the water during my visit to the zoo today, I was delighted to find the octopus was actually out and not hiding in a corner like usual. Plus I pretty much had him all to myself. Only a few others were in the area at the time so we hung out together for a while.  :)

{March 17:  Hobby}
March 17:  Hobby
I have several hobbies that I love (knitting, crocheting, scrapbooking - to name a few) but the one I love the most is raising butterflies. Specifically Monarchs. I have raised Monarchs for five years now and learn something new every year. This year I am working diligently to get my butterfly garden flourishing so they will come to me instead of me having to search for them. I found this garden stake today at the dollar store and even though it isn't a Monarch butterfly, I decided it would be a perfect addition to my garden.

{March 18:  Text}
March 18:  Text
Alex, my son who doesn't like to read because it is a struggle for him, borrowed one of my little chalkboards and some chalk and wrote this on it. He sits in his "office" (one of our dormers) and does his homework and reads. Makes this mama happy.

{March 19:  Private}
March 19:  Private
Ahem.  ;)
Had to dig into the archives today. The idea I had for today's prompt didn't work into everyone's schedules.

{March 20:  Hand-drawn}
March 20:  Hand-drawn
I painted one of our TV tray tables with chalkboard paint a couple days ago to see how I liked it. It turned out really well. The kids are enjoying it also and asked me if I would paint the other three. We were drawing a spring scene on it today in celebration of the start of spring. Apparently they aren't too old to draw with chalk.   :)

{March 21:  Sun flare}
March 21:  Sun flare
My beautiful girl enjoying the sun that made a late appearance yesterday. I'm glad we shot this yesterday as the sun is nowhere in sight today.

Linking with Tamar:

A quick rundown of my week:
Monday we had our new furnace installed.  Doug took a vacation day from work so he could be here for the installers.  He also worked on the bathroom, so I made myself scarce and went to the zoo.  It was a beautiful day!  Finished the evening off with Keira's violin lesson.
Tuesday I ran errands.  Nothing too exciting.  Picked up some green things for the boys to wear to church on Wednesday night.
Wednesday night was "wear green" night for the kids.  And the adults.  It was fun seeing the kids dress silly.
Friday Alex stayed home because he wasn't feeling well.  I was super tired because I stay up too late at night, so once Nick got on the bus, I took a nap.  Alex watched a movie and took a nap too.  I woke up at 12:30!
Friday night Keira and I went to see my friend Rainey in the play Steel Magnolias.  She played Annelle.  It was a great production!  I'm so glad Rainey does these theatre gigs because I probably wouldn't go if she wasn't in the plays.  :)
Saturday we stayed home from soccer.  Alex wasn't feeling well enough to go.  
Doug's birthday was Saturday.  We celebrated by going out to dinner (just the two of us) and picking up a Dairy Queen ice cream cake on the way home.  The cake was more for the kids than for Doug.  He had a slice but that is probably all he will eat.
I have been trying to get out and walk every day.  I haven't been able to yet because the weather doesn't always cooperate, but I've been doing okay.  It feels so good to be able to go outside and not have to bundle up!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 3/8/15 - 3/14/15

The first day of spring is on Friday!  Can you believe it?!  I'm so excited!  Although I do have to admit that the weather this past week felt like spring some days.  And today the high is supposed to be around 60 degrees, which is why I'm visiting the zoo.  Well, that's not the only reason.  We are having a new furnace installed today since the old one died a couple weeks ago and I didn't want to be home to listen to all that noise.  :)  Doug took a vacation day and will be working on the bathroom remodel some more.  More noise.  Sounded like a good excuse to visit the zoo.  Besides, I haven't been there in a while.

Anyway, hopefully I will have some good zoo pictures to share with you soon.

Speaking of pictures, here are last week's photo a day pictures ...

{March 8:  Young}
March 8:  Young
I honestly don't know whether the little bird is young or old, but he was nice enough to be still while I took his picture so I thought I'd share it.

{March 9:  Make}
March 9:  Make
Keira has been making herself a hat. She thinks she might be done with it in time for next winter.  :)

{March 10:  Floral}
March 10:  Floral
Cheery tulips to brighten your day.

{March 11:  Happy Place}
March 11:  Happy place
Alex asked if he could use one of our upstairs dormers for his "office". He calls it his new happy place.

{March 12:  Details}
March 12:  Details
The details in Gerber daisies are amazing to me.

{March 13:  Color}
March 13:  Color
I bought this jumbo-sized pinwheel a couple weeks ago while out shopping to add some color to our colorless, wintry life. :) Spring arrives a week from today and I don't think I have ever been more excited about a change of season.

{March 14:  Favorite}
March 14:  Favorite
I have probably shared this photo before, but it is my favorite photo of a Monarch butterfly. I can't wait for butterfly season to start!  :)

Linking with Tamar:

My usual rundown - feel free to skip this part.  It is more for me anyway.  :)
Sunday - daylight savings time.  Ugh.  'Nuf said.
Seriously though, I went to bed an hour or so earlier in anticipation of losing an hour of sleep and just laid there tossing and turning and wondering why I didn't just go ahead and watch another episode of Parenthood on Netflix.  :)
Monday was quiet.  Doug had to go work on his plant and spent the night.  Came home Tuesday.
Tuesday morning I met my friend, Sam, at my church and we walked for a bit.  She drives school bus and wants to start walking after her morning route.  We only walked together that one day last week but plan to walk more this week.  Honey came too and was a wet, muddy mess when we were done.  :)
Wednesday I walked by myself.   I love being able to start walking outside again!
Thursday after dropping Keira at worship practice I walked again.  Alex brought his bike and rode around the parking lot.
Ditto on Friday.  Honey came this time and was even messier than last time.  One of the bad things about spring - muddy dogs.
Saturday morning was soccer.  Alex scored his first goal.  Ever.  Except he scored it for the other team.  :/  He was right in front of his team's goal and went to kick the ball and it went backwards instead of forward.  We laughed and laughed about it.  He wasn't upset.  It was a good game though.  It ended in a tie.  The one boy on his team was being a jerk again.  Not just to Alex but to a couple other kids as well.  He's one of those kids that gets mad if someone messes up.  Must be tough to be so perfect.  (That's the Mama Bear in me coming out).  :)
Saturday was gross and rainy so after stopping at the grocery store after soccer, we came home and stayed there.  I made chicken noodle soup for supper.  We rented Maleficent from Redbox and relaxed.  Oh, that was after I did my sister's taxes.  They were pretty quick and easy.  Not at all what ours our like.  Which I still need to do.  Hoping to check that off my list this week or next.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 3/1/15 - 3/7/15

Posting a day later than planned due to lack of internet access.  We apparently had a bad wire leading up to the house and it got replaced yesterday.  No more losing internet and phone service!  WOOT!

It appears that winter might be over in these parts.  I realize we could still get a random snowfall here and there but the past few days have been really nice.  The sun has been shining and the temps around 50 degrees.  Today is a rainy day but it is still warmish.  The snow is melting and the robins are back in town!

Anyway, this is probably my last month participating in Fat Mum Slim's photo a day challenge.  At the end of this month I will have completed a full year with that group.  And since I joined another photo a day group, it is hard participating in both.  So here are my photos from last week ...

{March 1:  Starts with R}
March 1:  Starts with R
Roses. These two roses are real, dipped in a preserving/hardening agent and then dipped in gold. Both gifts from my dear husband. When I look at them, I am reminded how much he loves me.

{March 2:  Part of me}
March 2:  Part of me
Part of me really wanted to stay inside all day where it is warm. But another part of me really wanted to go outside and see how pretty everything was covered in a fresh coating of snow. You can see which part won.

{March 3:  Open}
March 3:  Open
My vintage camera is much more interesting to look at when it is open.

{March 4:  Geometric}
March 4:  Geometric
We have thousands of these in our house. Not all this shape, but still. 

{March 5: Out the window}
March 5:  Out the window
I had a completely different picture in mind for today's prompt and then this happened when I was dropping my daughter off for worship practice at church this evening. We haven't had many gorgeous sunsets lately so I had to stop and shoot this out the window of my car with my phone.

{March 6:  Remedy}
March 6:  Remedy
The remedy for this cabin fever - daffodils and sunshine. The daffodils are from the market. With about 8 inches of snow still on the ground, it will be a while before we have flowers sprouting.

{March 7:  Sweet}
March 7:  Sweet
Keira asked if she could help set this prompt up, so here you go. Ice cream with chocolate syrup. She enjoyed every single bite.  :)

Linking with Tamar:

A quick rundown of last week:
Monday the kids had another 2-hour delay, which really should have been a cancellation since the roads were pretty bad even with the delay.  Wednesday and Friday brought with them cancellations.  Wednesday because of snow and Friday because of the below zero temps we woke up to.  Friday was supposed to be a half day so a delay wasn't going to work.  As of right now, the kids will be in school until June 12.  :(
Spring seems to have arrived here in Pennsylvania!  We have had a couple pretty nice days after all of last week's mess.  Looks like the kids will have their first full five-day week of school since the week of December 15.
Alex had soccer on Saturday, as usual.  His team lost again.  There is one boy who is a good player but he has "anger issues" as Alex puts it.  Anyway, Alex was playing goalie and the other team scored against them.  This boy went over to him and called him an idiot for allowing them to score.  This mama bear wanted to go get in that boy's face, but I didn't.  I let it go and told Alex to do the same when he brought it up later.  The funny thing is - this boy has never played goalie as far as I know.  Frustrating.  We only have 3 weeks left in the season and Alex is having fun, which is really all that matters.
Saturday night we went to the symphony.  It was Broadway night.  What a great show!  Keira was able to volunteer for the National Junior Honor Society (passing out programs and showing people to their seats) so Doug's parents came in to stay with the boys.  When she was done, she was able to come sit with us and watch the show.
That's about it.  Not much excitement here.   :)

Monday, March 2, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 2/22/15 - 2/28/15

March is here!  I'm so excited!  Even if it did come in like a lion - dumping about 8 inches of snow on us on Sunday.  That just means it will go out like a lamb, right?  :)

Wishful thinking.

Anyway, let's get straight to last week's photos, shall we?

{February 22: Macro}
February 22:  Macro
Still enjoying the bouquet of flowers Doug bought me for Valentine's Day.

{February 23:  Fix}
February 23:  Fix
The inside of my Big Shot machine that has been sitting here waiting to be fixed for quite some time now. :/
Some days the inspiration just isn't there. This would be one of those days.  :)

{February 24:  12 o'clock}
February 24:  12 o'clock
Time for a cup of tea to help soothe a sore throat.

{February 25:  Reflection}
February 25:  Reflection
When we visit the zoo, I try to get at least one group shot. Even if it is only a reflection in one of the fish tanks.  :)
(Archive shot)

{February 26:  Grow}
February 26:  Grow
Nothing is growing around here since we are still under several inches of snow with more on the way. So I bought a small pot of Primroses to brighten things up a bit. 21 days until spring arrives!

{February 27:  Still life}
February 25:  Still life
Nothing spectacular today. Simply a dead rose from my Valentine's Day bouquet. Surprisingly some of the other flowers are still hanging in there.
(Much to my surprise, this photo was chosen as one of the FAB photos for the day.)

{February 28:  Thank you}
February 28:  Thank you
Thank you, Mom, for being so awesome and letting me climb the snow mountain in the mall parking lot. 
Love, Alex

Last month's completed collage:
February FMS PAD collage

Linking with Tamar:

Quick rundown of last week:
Nick's volleyball tournament got rescheduled to Monday.  It had been scheduled for Thursday the 18th but then school got cancelled.  No school again on Friday.  I was a little peaved that they didn't give us any notice.  Nick got home from school at 3:40 as usual and told me that he needed to be there at 5:15.  Anyway, his team lost right away.  They were playing double elimination so once a team lost two games, they were done.  One of our school's teams won the overall tournament, which was exciting.  There were 11 elementary schools participating.
Tuesday we had yet another school cancellation.  I think they are supposed to go to school until June 10th now.  :(
Doug got sick early Friday morning and stayed home from work.  While I felt bad for him, there was nothing I could do to make him feel better.  So I left the house.  :)  I usually exercise in our living room but he was resting on the couch.  So I went to the mall and walked 5 laps then ran some errands.  He rested all day and felt a little better by evening.  Although he said he felt like someone beat him up.
Saturday morning was soccer, as usual.  Except this time Doug didn't go.  He still wasn't feeling great.  Alex's team lost.  Again.  One of these years he will get placed on a winning team.  He has fun though and I guess that's all the really matters.  

The kids had a 2-hour delay for school this morning.  Which really should have been a cancellation.  As much as I hate adding another day to the end of the year, safety really should be a priority when it comes to our kids.  There were wrecks everywhere.  Keira called me to tell me her bus was taking a detour to school because a truck was blocking the road they usually take.  Then a bus got stuck on the hill right below the school.  For whatever reason, that road is poorly maintained in the winter.  And you would think of all places, that would be taken care of the most.  Tomorrow the forecast is calling for freezing rain then ice then rain but not until after the kids will already be in school.  Here's hoping for no more delays or cancellations!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 2/15/15 - 2/21/15

Another week under our belts.  One more week closer to spring.  Thanks to our lovely Pennsylvania weather, the kids had school cancelled on Monday, Thursday, and Friday last week.  We had record-breaking low temperatures.  Their Easter break is now gone with a couple days tacked on at the end of the year.  And winter isn't over yet.  :/

We had a bit of a warm up on the weekend along with about 6 more inches of snow on Saturday.  But back down to high temps in the single digits today.  Brrrrr!  Global warming sounds really good right now.  :)

Anyway, I'm still chugging along with Fat Mum Slim's photo a day challenge.  And I think I mentioned last week that I started another Project 365 challenge.  I'm allowing myself to use archived photos when I'm stumped or just not feeling it.  When I finish up my year with FMS PAD, I will make more of an effort to take a fresh photo every day.  After all, that's what these challenges are about.

Of course, now that I said that, the first photo of this week is an archived photo.  :)

{February 15: Spot}
February 15:  Spot
This Spicebush Swallowtail caterpillar has spots that look like eyes in order to scare off predators.  We had the pleasure of finding one a few years ago and keeping him in chrysalis form over the winter.  I hope to attract more of these lovelies to our butterfly garden this year.

{February 16:  From where I stand}
February 16:  From where I stand
It may look pretty outside, but from where I stand it is too stinkin' cold to go out! We are in the middle of "it is so cold it makes my face hurt" temperatures right now. Only 31 days until spring!

{February 17:  Routine}
February 17:  Routine
Exercise is definitely part of my daily routine. For now while it is too cold and slippery to exercise outside, I will continue to do my workouts indoors. Today was strength training. Tomorrow will be intervals.

{February 18:  Bedside}
February 18:  Bedside
Today's view from my bedside. Snow, snow, and more snow.

{February 19:  Fresh}
February 19:  Fresh
Fresh blackberries anyone?

{February 20:  This is so me!}
February 20:  This is so me!
Butterflies and sunshine. We had the sunshine today but I had to improvise with the butterflies since it is very much winter here right now.  :) This is a wind chime I bought recently. I can't wait until the weather warms up and I can hang it outside.
(This photo got chosen among the FAB photos for the day!  WOOT!)

{February 21:  Matching}
February 21:  Matching
We bought this matching tea set several years ago for our now-teenage daughter. Sadly it has been stored away for a while. She's a bit old for tea parties. But perhaps my youngest will want to have one with me. He's not too cool (yet) to hang out with his mama.  :)

Linking with Tamar:

Like I said, the kids had school cancelled Monday, Thursday, AND Friday.  
Keira had a violin lesson on Monday.  The boys and I dropped her off and ran a quick errand.  Their doors were frozen shut (motorized sliding van doors) so when we got back to her teacher's house, I asked if I could have some warm water to pour on my doors so we could open them.  When we had run our errand, the boys forgot they couldn't open their doors but they tried anyway.  Well, the doors were closed, but the sensor kept indicating that they were open, so the car was beeping over and over and over again on the way back to Stephanie's.  Ugh.  So incredibly annoying.  Warm water does the trick.  Even if only for a moment.  :)
Wednesday I went up to help set up our store at church.  But then we ended up cancelling Wednesday night kids' classes.  At least it is already set up for this week.  Hope we don't have to cancel again!  Oh spring, you can't come soon enough!  :)
Thursday and Friday were full of movie watching and laziness.  Although Alex and I did run up to the mall.  My Rite Aid register rewards were expiring and I didn't want to lose $8.00.  We also stopped at JCPenney to look for a new purse for me.  Didn't find one.  Alex wanted me to buy him a pretzel.  And a book.  And a toy.  And, and, and ...  Next time I think I will go alone.   :)  (He didn't get any of those things, by the way).
Saturday morning we woke up to snowy roads so we decided it wasn't worth it to go to Alex's soccer game.  When our road looks bad (a main road), it is best to just stay put.  We ended up getting about 6 inches of snow.  However it was a little warmer.  I think we almost hit the freezing mark.  After all those below zero temps, it felt like a heat wave!  :)

Monday, February 16, 2015

Weekly Summary ~ 2/8/15 - 2/14/15

Ah, February.  Why are you so cold this year?!

I am excited that it is already February 16th though.  More than halfway through the month!  March and hopefully warmer temps will be here before we know it!  At least I keep telling myself that.  :)

The kids had school cancelled today because of the cold.  Originally they were supposed to have the day off for President's Day but they lost it because of a cancellation in January.  Now they will lose another of their Easter vacation days.  I think they will only have Good Friday off now.  That's a bummer.  If they have any more cancellations, days will probably be tacked on at the end of the year.

Anyway, let's get on to last week's photos ...

{February 8:  In my bag}
February 8:  In my bag
In my bag I have been carrying a crocheting project I am currently working on. I'm not good at being idle so if I ever have to wait for a few minutes, I pull out my project and work on it. I figure it is better than spending time messing around on my phone.  :)

{February 9:  Energy}
February 9:  Energy
Our sweet golden, Honey, doesn't have as much energy as she used to, but she will still jump up to get a snowball to munch on.

{February 10:  This inspires me}
February 10:  This inspires me
This inspires me to try to photograph frozen bubbles again. This photo is from January 2014 when it was so bitterly cold that bubbles would freeze. It was an interesting experiment. But I prefer to play with bubbles on warm, summer days.  :)

{February 11:  On the wall}
February 11:  On the wall
The walls in the preschool room at our church are painted with a Noah's Ark theme. This particular section has elephants painted on the wall.  One of the lovely and talented ladies from our church did all the painting. Isn't it amazing?!

{February 12:  Pointy}
February 12:  Pointy
A coneflower in the winter isn't nearly as pretty as a coneflower in summer.  

{February 13:  Temptation}
February 13:  Temptation
The temptation was too great for her. She had to get up to eat the treat.   :)

{February 14:  Love}
February 14:  Love
Even though we don't usually do anything for Valentine's Day, this year my love bought flowers for me and Keira. A bouquet for each of us. How sweet of him!

Linking with Tamar:

My quick rundown of the week:
Nick stayed home from school on Monday not feeling well.  He had thrown up Saturday night, felt fine on Sunday, then threw up again Sunday night and Monday morning.  A friend suggested I get him tested for strep since it can have some strange symptoms, so we went to see our doctor.  No strep though, just a virus.  He was feeling better and went to school the rest of the week without incident.
Tuesday morning we had a VBS meeting at church.  It may seem a bit early to start planning VBS but there are a lot of things that need taken care of early.  
Tuesday afternoon a friend came over so we could experiment with some crafty stuff.  I will share what we did another time.
Wednesday morning I had breakfast with another friend.  We have some things in common and had a nice time chatting.
Wednesday afternoon I took Honey for a nice, long walk at a local state park.  The sun was shining and the temperatures were above freezing, so I decided to enjoy it while I could.  We had a nice walk.  It felt great to be out in the fresh air.
Thursday morning Nick had volleyball practice again.  They are scheduled to play their games this Thursday but the weather might interfere with that plan.  I think the high temp for the day is supposed to be 10 and the low -8.  So we'll see.
Friday the kids had the day off of school for an inservice day.  We didn't really do much.  Just hung around the house being kinda lazy.
Saturday was soccer as usual.  Except that it was picture day.  I always buy the smallest package just so I can get the group picture.  I don't think I have ever done anything with the photos from previous years, yet anyway.  Eventually they will go in Alex's scrapbook.
After soccer we went to lunch and then to Michael's to get more paint for Alex's Titanic model.  Doug said we needed to some touch-up paint.
That's about it!  Nothing too exciting!