Anniversary Numbers

15 years of marriage
14 thousand pounds of household goods
13 ER visits
12 Cub Scout and Boy Scout advancements
11 years of chasing toddlers
10 seats behind us in the van
9 months since the deployment
8 different addresses
7 Oktoberfests
6 children
5 surgeries
4 PCS moves
3 coffee makers
2 hearts
1 life

I think I like October

The 10 day weather forecast is calling for temps in the lower 80’s and (gasp!) upper 70’s.  If it weren’t going to rain today, I might have even opened the windows and turned OFF the A/C.  Maybe soon, I’ll even contemplate digging out the fall clothes.

After months of brutal heat, I am so ready for nice weather.

Vacation Sunday

Sadly, we had to end our vacation at some point.  Fritz had baseball practice that afternoon, so it was breakfast, pack out, check out, Mass in Fernandina and then on the road.


Coffee at sunrise.
I don’t know why he was standing – perhaps
to get a better view of some bird or the
dolphins we sometimes spotted.  Usually,
we sat out there for 30 minutes or more
for the spectacle.  Watching the sunrise is
an undertaking requiring patience and time.
Katie wisely brought her blanket to fend off the car A/C. 
Katie kindly shared her blanket with her equally chilled sisters.

Vacation Saturday

Saturday was a typical vacation day for Bill and I.  I got up at my usual 530 AM and ran 7 miles.  Then we went to the zoo and walked around for 3 hours or so.  Then Bill and I went out to dinner – we walked to the restaurant and then walked along the beach until it was time to go back.  Not very relaxing, but we really don’t quite know how to do that.

Sunrise.  Yes, we did this every day.
Bill took the pic as I was running on the beach at the time.

Under the penguins.

Seven little gorillas.

Riding an alligator.


Vacation Friday

On Friday we went to Fort Clinch on the northern end of Amelia Island.  We saw the mid-18th century fort there, which looks just like the mid-18th century forts located closer to our home in Georgia.  Like those forts, this fort was obsolete before it was completed.  Unlike the other forts, they actually stopped building this one.  However, our tax dollars continue to go into it, making it a testament to government waste more than anything else.  Don’t get me wrong, I like museums and think they are a good way to spend money.  I just find it amusing that the government wasted our money to begin building it, and then compounds the error by continuing to funnel money into it as a museum.


Obligatory picture in front of the sign.

Fort Clinch, which looks unremarkably similar to
Fort Pulaski and Fort McAlister in Georgia.

If you have seen one mid-18th century fort, you have
seen them all.  But we’ll take photos anyway.

Not just this fort, but lots of places in the Southeast
use seashells as aggregate in the concrete.
The engineer in me thinks this is so very cool.

Hi, I’m Mary.  I’m very hot and very cranky.
No, I do not want my picture taken.
I want to go home – not back to that
villa place.  No, HOME.  And I want to
be magically transported there, since
the car is evil.

After Fort Clinch, we went to downtown Fernandina, which is proud that it has flown eight flags (from eight different governments) in its history.  The local history museum seemed a decent size for such a small town.  I was only in there briefly, since I stayed with a napping child in the car for the majority of the visit (I had a book).

The Nassau County Jailhouse.

A portrait of unrepentance.

Vacation Thursday

The date stamp on my camera must be off.  These say the 8th, but we weren’t there until the evening of the 8th.  This is the view from our 3rd floor “villa.”  Our day consisted of going to the beach and going to the pool and taking a bike ride.


The pool behind our villa.  We were in Florida, but not Orlando,
despite the mouse head shape of the pool.
Too hot!

Just right!

Mary had a little lamb

Actually she didn’t…doesn’t.  Recently, she’s been saying to Bill and I, “I don’t know where my sheep is.”  She watched a Dora episode where Dora asked if the watcher wanted to go to Mary’s house.  Oh, boy, was Mary excited.  Dora told all the kids that Mary.hada.little.lamb.Mary.hada.little.lamb. And they were all going to see the little lamb.

Well, Mary’s birthday is rapidly approaching, and I thought I’d get her a little lamb.  Being a tactile person, I’d prefer to touch one and find one that was cute and very very soft.  But lambs are not very popular, so I haven’t seen any in the stores. 

I’ve resorted to online shopping, but it’s hard to tell how soft it is, and if I’m not guaranteed softness, I’ll go with cuteness.  But there’s too many choices.  And I know, I just know, that there is some Catholic SAHM who hand makes barnyard animals and sells them by word of mouth.

So, I’m looking for recommendations, either a manufacturer of cute, ultra soft plush lambs or a home crafter who can knock one of these little things out in a week or so.  Anybody?

To nap or not to nap

Mary is at an in between stage with naps.  She won’t fall asleep at a reasonable hour.  Then in the late afternoon, she passes out (or is absolutely miserable).  And I can’t wake her up for several hours.  Then she won’t go to bed until late, and she sleeps a bit later the next day.  So she’s not ready for a nap at a good hour.  Etcetera.

The other day, I went out to hang up a load of laundry and wrestle spent tomato plants out of the ground.  When I came back, I found her thusly, next to my desk.  Note, the floor is stone tile – not very comfy.  Also note the long sleeve dress, unbuttoned.  She was playing dress up.  Daytime temps are still in the nineties here, so she’s more than a bit overdressed. 
I find these transitional periods wearisome.  Very wearisome.  At least they’re good for funny photos.

Should I color?  Do some schoolwork?  Eat a lollipop?  Naw, I think I’ll just sleep, right here, on the cold hard floor.

First she plunders the lollipop jar, then she passes out, evidence in hand.

PS: Is anybody else annoyed beyond belief at the new blogger editing?  Or is it just me?  Can we go back to the way things were?


The whole gang.

Super fancy cake with Base 10 blocks as decoration.
Katie’s first cake, too.

Jenny’s 7th birthday.
The serenade.
Surrounded by friends.

My favorite apron.

I’m behind on posting photos, and have finally emptied my camera.  Here are the ones from the past two birthdays.  Blogger has this new editing thing.  I really don’t have time to learn new stuff right now.  I’m sure it will be great once I get the hang of it.  But for now, I’m very grumpy with Blogger.