Saturday, June 23, 2018

I Demand a Do-Over!

Ok, so yesterday was not a stellar day. Actually, that's not totally accurate; it was a good day, it just wasn't the best day; had it not been for that unfortunate incident on the highway, it would have been a most glorious day. But, I'm moving past that now, and, I'm focusing on the positive, because, that's how I roll (and, remember, no one was injured, cars are replaceable (and, fixable), and, life will go on, thank God).

So, had I not been distracted by the collision, I would have written about some really cool things that I am loving right now, things like this fairy garden that I have started building in my backyard.

I was inspired by an amazing fairy village that my co-workers and I discovered in a neighborhood that we like to walk through on our daily mental-health breaks. I'm calling it a village because "garden" doesn't begin to cover it-the thing is a sprawling homage to woodland sprites and I love it. My own attempt pales in comparison, but, it's a work in progress (I literally just felt Hugh rolling his eyes). The coolest thing about my garden? It lights up at night (again with the eye rolls, Hugh? Really?)! I keep forgetting to take a picture of it at night, but, one of these evenings, I'll get my shit together.

Speaking of things I love that will totally make Hugh's eye roll: look at these awesome Mary Lake Thompson melamine plates and tea towels that I found in a little store in a nearby town!

I was in the town for a meeting for Day Job and found myself with a little time to kill, and, since I had been driving for an hour, I thought I would stretch my legs a bit with a walk, so, I ventured into the downtown area and into a quaint little shop, which is where I discovered this set. Of course I fell in love with it immediately (says the woman who named her bike Lulu and who refers to said bike in the female pronoun). I plan to use it for Porch Nights, I mean, obviously. There are eight salad plates, three tea towels, and a humongous platter that will hold enough cheese to feed an army (or, a group of hungry Porch Nighters).

 Each plate features a different bike and all of them are adorable; they make me want to don a beret, throw a french baguette into Lulu's basket, and take them on a picnic, all of which could happen (minus the beret, because I would look like a total fool; very few people can pull off the beret).

Do you see how much better yesterday's post would have been had it not been for that unfortunate incident on the highway (that is what I'm calling it from this day forth)?

It's ok, though, the day was salvaged when Jana called to invite the Cub and me out for dinner (Hugh is on a wrestling trip). She and Chris fed us up right, but, not before Jana served a refreshing mojito, guaranteed to take your mind off of unpleasant things (like, unfortunate incidents on the highway).

It was a great way to end a somewhat-although not totally-crappy day. Good friends are always at the top of my favorites list.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Not So Favorites on This Friday

I was going to do another Friday Favorites post today because I had lots of great things to talk about! I was having a great day! I mean, it's my second Friday of the week, now that I am on a four-day schedule at Day Job, and, I slept in! I got a pedicure! I have a fun weekend planned! Amazon Prime has been very kind to me lately and, I have several fun new things that I was dying to talk about! It was going to be the best Friday Favorites post, evahhh! And, then...


It was totally my fault, of course, and, the woman I accidentally hit is the mother of one of our employees and she is such a sweetheart, and I feel just terrible.

On the other hand, given the location of the accident, and considering the outcome of numerous other accidents that have happened there in the past, it could have been so much worse. 

I have many blessings to count and an angel to thank.

But, ugggg. This is not how I wanted the day to go.

I'm sorry, Friday. I'm sorry I ruined you :(

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Happy First Day of Summer!

Knowing that summer has only just officially started makes me feel moderately better about the fact that we still don't have the boat back from the mechanic shop. Moderately.

But, that is a bitch session for another day. You're welcome.

Instead, let's talk about the progress on my garden! This was the garden two weeks ago,

and this was the garden last week.

This evening, it looks like this..., it's pretty clear that it is, indeed, growing. I already have tiny peppers on both the bell pepper and jalapeno pepper plants, and, there are a couple of small green tomatoes on the tomato plants, so, while I won't be harvesting a ton of produce anytime soon, I do see the potential for a bumper crop a bit farther on down the road.

Also, since I have somehow managed to not kill the sweet potato plants, I am guardedly optimistic that they will produce at least a few tubers. Just to be sure, I recently hoed a few furrows in between the rows to allow for deeper watering at the roots of the plants, and, am currently contemplating the purchase of a colony of live ladybugs for pest control. I haven't had a ladybug release since the Man-Cub and Mikey released ladies into the garden for me back in 2013, so the thought of doing so makes me all sorts of nostalgic for my babies.

Look how little they were!

I wonder what it would take to bribe college students to indulge me in a lady bug release again this year...

...nope, it would probably involve beer and I wouldn't want to be guilty of contributing to the delinquency of minors.; Day Job would most certainly frown on that.


Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Good Things Come to Those Who Wait

Back in 2014, we purchased a metal-framed outdoor gazebo for the back yard. Hugh took a lot of time securing the frame to flagstone pavers that he had set in the ground, and, we went about enjoying the summer months in the cool shade.

Until...dun, dun, dun! The following summer, when Mom's dog came to visit and he and Rowdie tore the ever-living shit out of the mesh while playing a rousing game of what I can only imagine was the pit bull version of Capture the Flag.

The destruction wouldn't have been quite so bad had we been able to replace the mesh, but, alas, replacements for the gazebo were nowhere to be found, and, trust me; we looked everywhere. So, we were left with a sad, barren metal frame, prominently hulking in the corner of the yard, like a blight on our landscaping.

Flash forward to last month, when Hugh picked up a notebook and started doodling... should be noted that, the first phase of our four-year home remodel and renovation also began with a doodle...on a Denny's napkin...but that is a story for another day.

Anyhoodle, Hugh's doodle inspired a trip to Home Depot and, next thing you know, we were well on our way to another shady respite from the summer heat...

I love how it turned out and I can't wait to get it decorated and set up for entertaining and relaxing. Before I can do that, Hugh has to finish his next project: the fire pit! He's converting our currently-wood burning pit into one powered by propane. Once that is accomplished, and once we have sanded and stained the furniture that we used to use in the gazebo, I will add cushions, pillows, and other decor items and we will be good to go.

Having a handy husband (and a hardware store) has it's perks!

Monday, June 18, 2018

Fathers Day 2018

Much like every other summer weekend, this one went by in the blink of an eye; one minute, I was mentally checking out of work and the next, I was preparing my brain to rush back into the fray.


In the middle, there was a lot of time spent in the garden, a night spent with my children, and a kick-ass BBQ to celebrate Hugh and Oscar on Fathers Day, which, isn't a bad way to spend the time in between 5:00 on Thursday evening and 8:00 am on Monday.

Not bad at all.

The BBQ was a total homage to gluttony; Hugh grilled three different kinds of burgers (regular, bacon and cheddar, and black and blue), brats, and terriyaki chicken breasts. Queen B tried her hand at her grandma's potato salad recipe for the first time (it turned out great!), Emily contributed her German potato salad (vinegar base, rather than mayo/mustard base like my mom's), I made my mock Caprese salad, and slow-cooked baked beans, and we sliced up a watermelon, using a new slicer that Queen B and I saw at the grocery store and were intrigued enough to purchase- it worked amazingly well, but it makes some ginormous slices...

It was a lot of food, but none of it will go to waste-leftovers were sent with the children, and we all know how much a houseful of teenagers and twenty-somethings can eat.

It was a gorgeous day, despite the rainfall that had happened overnight, or, maybe because of it. We ate dinner on the porch, where Emily and I admired my roses, which are blooming like crazy right now...

... and we sipped on wine that I purchased from the winery where Queen B is doing her internship. It was a great way to celebrate the menfolk, and, lest you think that slaving over a hot grill is not really a fun way to spend a day that is supposed to be about celebrating Fathers, Hugh would beg to differ; he is the self-proclaimed Grill Master and wouldn't have spent it any other way.

Hugh: Master of All He Surveys

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Games Called On Account of Rain

The kids came home yesterday, which means that I had them both sleeping under my roof for the first time since Christmas. They were here for a double-header that the Cub's team was supposed to play today, but, we have since learned that the games have been cancelled due to the downpour of rain that we got overnight.

Hugh had been scheduled to umpire at the games and had been looking forward to it, and, Queen B has had yet to watch her brother play this summer and was also looking forward to it, so, there is a bit of disappointment all around.

On the bright side, we desperately, desperately needed the rain, I still have both my children under my roof, it's Father's Day, and, we are going to host a BBQ this afternoon, come rain or shine, so, lemonade out of lemons and all that.

Plus, the rain is good for my garden, it will provide a bit of relief for the men and women fighting fires in our area, and, you can't beat the smell of rain on a summer morning.

The smell of wet dog, I could do without (Boomer, I'm looking at you), but, we can't have everything.

I miss having my kids in my kitchen...even when they are being little assholes.