Summertime Fun

Nothing says summer like the ocean and the beach!

Hi and Happy Summer.  Are you having a good one so far?  We are and enjoying our different routine. We were super busy between the last time I wrote and the end of school. There was a lot going on and much to finish. So I have not had the time to write and I have missed it very much.

We are enjoying the down time and the family time. On the other hand, we have been busy with our family business, yet still make time for nice meals together, some shopping and some time to chat without somewhere we have to be each night, or without homework.

We are having time to read, enjoying ice cream, Lego movies and builds, and word finds. I have asked Ian to teach me about chess and I am looking forward to that.  He has become a great player and I know almost nothing about the game. I am blessed to have time for that with him.

This summer, Ian has discovered the Harry Potter books.  He really likes them and has been taken in by the world that J.K. Rowling has created.  I have not read the series yet but think I might.  I have heard so many great things about it.

I will have to take more photos of our adventures this summer.  I tend to enjoy being in the moment and forget to do that. I am, after all, from a different generation than that of documenting everything on a cell phone. And, I don’t have the right phone to do that with.  Perhaps one day.

On this summer day, I am thankful for:

  • Later bedtimes and the chance to sleep in
  • Homemade dinners and time to visit
  • Watching a favorite show or movie together
  • Hearing about favorite parts of Ian’s new book
  • Enthusiasm of a new Lego set
  • Enthusiasm of a new book
  • Watching Ian build his new Lego set
  • Treats from a favorite bakery
  • Walks with my guys
  • Times with family
  • Family photos and fun times
  • Funny times together when laughter turns to tears
  • Used books stores where I can find books, bumper stickers, and buttons
  • Our slower pace
  • Our upcoming beach trip
  • Dinners out with friends and family
  • Birthday celebrations and new life

Hope you have a great day. I will try to write more over the summer and have plenty to write about. Just finding the time to do it is often a challenge. Please share ideas that you’d like me to blog about. Blessings to you and yours.

Throwback Thursday – Summer!

TBT_6-23-2016Hi and Happy Thursday. Are you having a great summer? We are!  So far, so good.  We are about to finish our third week of summer and are having a wonderful time. This photo was taken of Ian in Fort Pierce, Florida many years ago.

When he was this age, his pacifier was a constant for him. This was one of the first times that he got to walk on the sand, or should I say run. He loved it. He still does love it. Sadly we won’t be going to the beach this summer, but have plenty of other things to keep us busy.

Last night, we went to my parent’s house for swimming and dinner. They have a neighborhood pool that we enjoyed. It was a very hot day so the water was perfectly cool and fun. After swimming, we went back to their house and had a great dinner and dessert and plenty of laughs. It was great.

Tonight is game night and homemade pizza at our house. My parents are coming over for that, which will also be fun. Big decision of the evening will be, do we play The Game of Life or Star Wars Monopoly or both?  Perhaps Dominos or the card game Pounce? We will see what Ian and everyone else feel like.

Life with no alarm clocks or set schedules is very nice this time of year. And, since I work at home, I can be flexible enough to start later in the morning or wear my pajamas. How great is that? It’s the little things that become the big blessings, isn’t it?!

Our summer started with a trip to North Carolina which was great. That was for both work and play. We had time to visit family, take a few walks, enjoyed dinner out with friends, and bought cookies and almond strudel at a wonderful bakery, and frozen yogurt treats. Also, I bought a new coloring book (yes I do like coloring), and Ian got a new Lego set. I helped him build it and we took several pictures.

June has been good so far and July should be as well. Next month we will go back to North Carolina, have a chance to visit some friends, may attend a baseball game, and I will have a high school reunion. I have great classmates who are always fun to see.  Cannot wait.

I love all of the memories we are making this summer with Ian. Each day has something fun. Whether it’s spending the day with messy hair and clothes to swimming to reading a library book to watching a favorite cartoon, we are enjoying our time together.

In addition to all of our fun, we are thinking of and praying for those suffering and struggling. We are talking with Ian about what can be done to help others and reminding him to always love others and be respectful. Also, we encourage him to ask questions that he has and we discuss those. With so much going on in the world, there is much to learn.

I wonder what other adventures the summer will bring?  I cannot wait to find out. Hope you also have a great summer!  Enjoy.

Throwback Thursday — Summer Memories

TT_9-2-2015_Summer.Ian

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi and Happy Thursday!  It is hard to believe that today is the 3rd day of September.  We are almost finished with our 5th week of school.  Wow, time flies by.  This summer seems but a memory now.  We had a great time and made some fabulous memories.

Our summer went by so quickly and was just nine weeks.  Not enough time in my opinion since I always want more summer and more down time and more time without our usual schedule.  But, then again, would it be as special and magical if it went on and on?  Something to think about.

This photo is from a few summers ago.  Ian was having a great time playing at the beach.  He loves it as much now as then.  He likes to do some things on his own and also play with his cousins.  It was great family time and lots of it.  We had that many other years as well and are so very fortunate.

So many summer memories are precious and ones that I love.  My favorite place to spend the summer is at the beach in San Diego, California.  The weather is usually just right.  There is very little humidity and it is cool at night.  That is what I grew up with and now what Ian is growing up with.

Soon it will be fall/autumn.  That is my favorite season in both Tennessee and North Carolina.  I love all things fall.  For now though, I am enjoying my wonderful summer memories.  Hope you have them as well.

Today, I am thankful for:

  • Seeing cousins this summer after several years
  • Catching up with dear friends who I hadn’t seen in a few years
  • Walks at the beach and back and forth to our motel
  • Fish tacos on the beach house porch
  • Healing from an injury from the beach trip
  • The ocean waves and breezes
  • A house that has been in my family for generations
  • Memories of ice cream treats
  • Sharing so many special times with my hubby and son
  • Sunsets and photo opportunities
  • Family bonding time
  • Laughter and singing with family and friends
  • Celebrations
  • Two parties for my parents’ 50th anniversary
  • Another wonderful summer

I wonder what our next summer will bring?  I am sure it will also be fun.  Until then, I will enjoy the fall, winter, and spring.

Two More Weeks of Summer

Summer.7-28-2-14It is hard to believe that two weeks from today, school will start back for Ian.  My the summer has flown by. But it’s not over yet!  So, we will have to see what other fun things we can get into.  We certainly did a variety of fun things this weekend, along with some work.

This photo is from last month when we went to Cypress Gardens.  I love the pink color amongst all of the green and the water. That was such a calming place and lovely.

Over the weekend, we went shopping for books and a microscope for Ian.  We also went to buy a new backpack for Ian for school and some new tennis shoes.  Then we went for a yummy lunch at the Olive Garden.  And, later we had a relaxing evening.

For several days, we watched the San Diego Padres in action — first against the Chicago Cubs and then the Atlanta Braves.  I prefer going to a ballpark but it was just as fun watching on television. They won two of the games and lost two.

We also watched “Heaven is For Real.”  That was a very good movie and touching.  It makes you stop and think about your faith.  Anyone else seen it?  I would love some thoughts on that.

Ian spent Sunday afternoon reading his new books and going outside to find things to look at through his microscope.  At one point he was ready for a snack and said, “I am a hungry scientist.”

After that we went to play mini-golf with some friends and then out for dinner.  We had a great visit and a lot of fun.  None of us did very well but we had a great time.  Ian and his buddy were helping each other throughout the course.

Now with two weeks left of summer, we have to decide what else we will be doing.  I think there will be swimming, maybe a trip to a museum, a baseball game, and time to ride Ian’s bike, and take walks.

Ian will be starting his 1st grade year.  I think he is excited to get back to school since he really likes it.  For that I am thankful.  I, on the other hand, can’t believe he is almost a first grader.  The first year went so fast and I expect this one to as well.

Soon it will be back to the alarm clock going off, packing lunches, walking to and from school (when the weather is nice), homework and school projects, and earlier bed times.

For now and the next two weeks though, we will still enjoy making pancakes and bacon during the week.  There is never enough time during the school year to do this in the morning before we have to leave.  Instead it’s just on the weekend. So that is a fun summer treat.

We will also enjoy time to read together, have Ian watch his favorite cartoons in the morning, color and draw, make up stories, play, have computer time, and enjoy ice cream treats.

The routine and pace of summer is so different than the school year.  We have enjoyed it and will between now and when school starts.

I wonder what fun end of the summer adventures we will have this week and next?  I cannot wait to find out.

Sweet Tea and Summer

iced.teaIn the movie, Steel Magnolias, sweet tea is named the house wine of the south.  I have to agree.

Here in the south, most of us like our tea sweet with plenty of ice.  Some like lemon with it and some don’t.  Other parts of the country look at you funny when you order sweet tea or iced tea at a restaurant.

In my opinion, the best sweet tea is when the sugar is added when the water is still hot — just after brewing.  If you wait until it’s cold, it just doesn’t mix very well.

My friend Dawn really likes sweet tea and regularly drinks it.  My husband does as well.  I like my sweet tea mixed with some unsweet tea as it is often too sweet for me.  And, I like lots of ice.

Imagine my delight when I realized that the town of Summerville, South Carolina, which we recently visited,  is the birthplace of Sweet Tea. I made a note to be sure and tell Dawn about this.

According to an article in Charleston’s newspaper, The Post and Courier, a receipt from 1890 indicated that this was the location of the first sweet tea.  Here is an excerpt from that article:

“For some years, the Southern beverage was thought to have happened onto the scene in St. Louis at The World’s Fair in 1904.

“But those ideas changed with the discovery of a long list of items purchased for a reunion of old soldiers near Summerville in 1890.

“Among the provisions of bread, beans, and beef were these specific commodities: 600 pounds of sugar and 880 gallons of iced tea. These folks were already enjoying the Southern beverage of choice a full 14 years before anybody at the World’s Fair had even considered dropping some ice into a glass of tea.”

The article also states that the City of Summerville was approved for a trademark to call itself the birthplace of sweet tea.  Cool!  (pun intended)

According to a Charleston travel magazine, “The tea plant (Camellia Sinensis) arrived in Summerville in the late 1700s imported by Andre Michaux, a French explorer and botanist. In 1888, Dr. Charles Shepard was the first to successfully propagate and produce tea for consumption when he acquired 600 acres in Summerville and established the Pinehurst Tea Plantation. Dr. Shepard produced award-winning teas until his death in 1915.”

The tea plant (Camellia Sinensis) arrived in Summerville in the late 1700s imported by Andre Michaux, a French explorer and botanist. In 1888, Dr. Charles Shepard was the first to successfully propagate and produce tea for consumption when he acquired 600 acres in Summerville and established the Pinehurst Tea Plantation. Dr. Shepard produced award-winning teas until his death in 1915. – See more at: http://travelerofcharleston.com/blog/summerville-tastes-like-sweet-tea/#sthash.DwbbY7m4.dpuf

There is nothing like a glass of sweet tea – served over lots of ice — especially in the summer.  AHHH!

To me, here is summer:

  • Bare feet
  • Playing in the sprinkler
  • Sand in my toes
  • Lightning bugs
  • Late nights
  • Lazy mornings
  • Making pancakes on a weekday
  • Playing a game of chess with Ian
  • Reading books anytime
  • Swimming in the pool
  • Watermelon dripping down your hands
  • Corn cooked on a grill
  • Walks with my hubby and son
  • Cookouts
  • Fireworks
  • S’mores
  • A tall glass of sweet iced tea

I wonder when my next glass of sweet tea will be?  Probably at lunch!  Take care and have a great day!

The tea plant (Camellia Sinensis) arrived in Summerville in the late 1700s imported by Andre Michaux, a French explorer and botanist. In 1888, Dr. Charles Shepard was the first to successfully propagate and produce tea for consumption when he acquired 600 acres in Summerville and established the Pinehurst Tea Plantation. Dr. Shepard produced award-winning teas until his death in 1915. – See more at: http://travelerofcharleston.com/blog/summerville-tastes-like-sweet-tea/#sthash.DwbbY7m4.dpuf

Throwback Thursday – June 26

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJust four more days of June left.  Wow!  Where has the month gone?  It seems like we just started it and our summer.  And now we are nearly halfway the summer through already.  Time certainly does fly as we get older, doesn’t it?!

Here is a really sweet picture of Ian at the beach in Fort Pierce, Florida. He was about 2 years old.  I love how it looks like he can reach out and touch the water.  “Look Mommy, almost got it” is what he is seeming to say.

As you can see on the sand, the beach is covered with shells.  This was a great shelling beach.  We had to wear our shoes to keep our feet safe.  Fun times!

Since this picture was taken, Ian has grown and changed so much.  His feet are now probably twice as big and he is much taller.  Amazing he was ever this little.

Today, I am thankful for:

  • My shell collection
  • The feel of sand in my toes
  • My son’s smile
  • A hug from Ian before bed as he says, “I love you Mommy”
  • A cold drink
  • An ocean breeze
  • Our summer schedule
  • A dinner date with my guys
  • Cheering on the USA during a soccer match
  • Watching a baseball game
  • Talking a walk

I wonder what our summer Thursday has in store for us?  I hope it’s something fun!

…And The Livin Is Easy

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERASummertime and the livin is easy.  Hi and Happy Summer!  And TGIF!  We are having a very nice, although hot and humid summer.  How about you?! We have had lot of rain and thunderstorms and last night even some pea-size hail.

This morning, Ian asked me if summer is the rainy season.  I told him not normally, but it certainly has been so far this summer  And, there is a chance of rain every day for the next week.

This photo is of Ian a few years ago.  He was having a great time at the beach.  He loves to play in the sand and in the water. I was a day late on Throwback Thursday, so thought I’d post this now.

For a child, the days of summer can run together.  That is why we talk each morning about the day of the week and the date.  Ian has a calendar that he has been marking off.  He is very excited that tomorrow is the official start of summer.

This summer we are playing, having time on the computer, seeing friends and family, riding his bike with training wheels, drawing and coloring, reading, and doing some school work as well.  It isn’t a lot of work, just enough so he doesn’t lose all that he learned during the school year.

On this day before the official start of summer, I am thankful for:

  • Umbrellas and rain boots on a rainy day so we can sing in the rain
  • Air conditioning so we aren’t quite so sweaty on a very humid day
  • A cold glass of water or iced tea
  • A cold beer with tacos or a hamburger
  • Having extra time to talk to Ian in the morning since we aren’t having to rush out the door
  • Watching a favorite show with Kirk and Ian
  • Savoring frozen yogurt or ice cream
  • Watching Ian play with a friend he hasn’t seen in a long time

I wonder what we’ll be doing next in this lazy, hazy summer.  Can’t wait to find out!

 

Summer Throwback Thursday

June.5_TTFor today’s Throwback Thursday, I decided to include a picture of Ian at the beach a few years ago.  He looks like he is talking about what he wants to do next.

Just like me, he loves the beach and always has such fun while he is there. Then again, being a kid he is happy in whatever he is doing.  I love how he has taught me to live in the moment.

We’ve almost finished our first week of summer and we are having a blast!  We attended a fun cookout, have been playing at home, reading books for the summer reading program, eating ice cream cones at home a few times, spending time on the computer, and coloring and doing other art projects. So far so good.

Summer and the living is easy and fun.  We are sleeping in a little bit — well just 30 minutes so far.  Hopefully as we go along there will be some later mornings but I doubt it. After a year of getting up at the same time 5 days a week, it’s hard to change for summer.

A few things I am thankful for this week:

  • Listening to Ian read a book that he chose at the library (and he did such a great job)
  • Enjoying chocolate mint ice cream on a cone with Ian
  • Taking our time with breakfast and our mornings
  • Smiling as Ian sings a favorite Bon Jovi song
  • Savoring coffee made each morning by Kirk
  • Shopping at the store with my guys and choosing some special treats
  • Having family over for dinner
  • Talking to an old friend
  • Attending a cookout at my parents’ house and having a blast
  • Sweating outside and then coming into the air-conditioned house
  • Staying home all day

I wonder what the rest of this first week of summer will bring?  I hope it’s something fun and can’t wait to find out.  Take care!

The Start of Summer

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAToday is our first day of summer and you know what? We woke up at the usual time – just like for a school day.  ARG!!!

I was not too happy with that since it is Saturday morning, but I guess old habits take a while to change.  After a year of being on a strict schedule, it will take some time for all of us to get used to a different schedule.

We are looking forward to a relaxing day though.  We will be going to the library this afternoon to sign up for their summer reading program and choosing some new books.

And, this evening, we are going to a cookout at my parent’s house.  So, that too will be nice.

And sometime in the next few days, we will go swimming at the pool.  And hopefully have some time at the lake and at the park as well.

This photo was taken of Ian about 4 years ago at the beach.  He was surprised about something but I don’t remember what it was.  He was ready for summer fun then and he is ready today for the summer to begin.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Spending the morning in our pajamas since we had nothing planned
  • Summer books
  • Ice cream on a hot day
  • Swimming
  • Playing games
  • Staying up later than usual

Summer… and the living is easy.   Hope you have a great summer!

Throwback Thursday – 2 Girls at Mission Beach, CA

Hi and Happy Thursday.   We are just a few days away from the end of the month.  Can you believe it?  This year has flown by.  Now we are in the midst of another wonderful summer!!

Cindy.Patti.seawallToday for my new Throwback Thursday, I wanted to post two of my favorite pictures of me with my sister Cindy.

The time was in the early 1970s, the place is Mission Beach, CA, and as you can see we are wearing matching outfits.

The photo on the left is cute as we are in motion and ready to hit the beach – even though we are both dressed up.  I love the wind in our hair and our bodies in motion.

girls at beachThe photo on the right showed our personalities at the time.  I was very shy as a child and liked to be quiet and Cindy was very outgoing with a zeal and zest for life — even as a very young girl.

This picture captures both of us and who we were at the time.

Since these photos were taken, we have taken many, many other pictures at this favorite location.  We have them throughout our growing up years and with our own children.

Last summer, we took pictures of the two of us sitting on the seawall with our mother.  Special times and special pictures!

I wonder what our next wonderful pictures will be?  Will they be at this much-loved beach or somewhere else?  It will be fun to find out!