Thursday, June 28, 2012

At the Beach

Not a beach person. I don't like to be in water too long. I prefer the dirt in between my fingers and green surrounding me. Why? I almost drowned when I was a kid and if my little ones were to read this - hopefully this will serve as an archive and a peak into my life's past- I lied to both of you. I want you to take swim lessons each year not because I love being in the water with you, but because I don't want you to go through what I went through.

That being said, I like the sound of water and the sound of my little ones having a blast at the beach.  I usually hide under a sun hat, wear way too much SPF, bring along an umbrella and worry that they are going in too far.  I cannot deal with another freckle even if my little A loves them. When she was 3 she asked me "Mommy, when am I getting my dots?". I was too busy making sure her carseat belts were properly on to notice her staring at my face. "What dots?", I asked. "Those dots" she returned. She nearly poked my eye out pointing to three freckles that form a perfect triangle near my left eye (no I was never part of a street gang). I wanted to say "Hopefully never and hopefully your porcelain face will always remain the same". But I stopped myself, smiled at her and said "I know, they are so cool and make me different and beautiful. I don't know when but we'll see as you grow bigger". I hope she still likes freckles at 16.

 This beach is about 40 minutes from our home. Its near a wonderfully kept little town with marvelous unique old homes. It also has one fantastic fort. This one does not have the bright colors and no plastic. Its all wood and its actually built like a fort (walls surround it so you can't lose your kid). A thinks it was made to be a princess castle.
 Poor swan.. can't come out to play.
At the beach, when I am not worrying about them going in too far or me getting another freckle, I crochet and then I start to relax n' slow down. Then, I lose the hat, dig my feet in the sand for a natural n' free pedicure and crochet to the rythm of the waves and the sound of laughter near by.

I hope you get your feet 
In the sand this summer 
And enjoy the sound of the waves
And great roars of the water.

I pray you get to rest
Not too far from the sea
That you get to take a nice nap
And let your worries all go free.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Hot times in the city

The hubster decided to visit the city. It has been 5 months since I have been there.  I have a love hate relationship with the city. I love it for I grew up in the big, noisy, over populated, city. When I left it 10 years I ago I missed it dearly. Now, I don't miss it at all. Or do I?

I certainly don't miss the traffic… although I always went for public transportation until my then fiancee' gave me his Honda Prelude- vrooom! Most girls get flowers, jewerly….. I got a car after dating for a year;) That's why I married that guy.

I certainly don't miss the tight living quarters and lack of little wildlife critters and greenery.  When I moved to the burbs and saw a possum for the first time I nearly panicked. I thought it was an albino rat. I have to say, the city is trying to move from gray heat islands to more green and I couldn't be more proud. More and more rooftop gardens are born daily and community gardens in local parks are sprouting. I was psyched to find a garden not far from where we were--I will post these at a later time.

I don't miss the way too tall modern architecture. The city seems a bit confusing to me. Old romantic buildings next to new sleek ones. Although I admire the new architecture, the old buildings are my favorite and have so many stories to tell. I worked in those too tall buildings and if you were one second late, you were gonna be 10 minutes late--- elevators were always packed.

I don't miss the graffiti, but I did like this little guy. I am a sucker for owls. 
I think its an owl. 

The old buildings inside have the best details. Here at the CCC, the entry way welcomes you with intricate tile work from many years back.

Again, why I heart the old buildings… back then it wasn't just putting up walls….it was building mini-castles!

 Wonder how long it took to put these ceiling sets together?

I do appreciate the city's love of the arts. The following are by Brazilian Artist

Denise Milan,

I do worry that an alien ship landed in the city… oh wait… its that bean thing...
 Here we are in the middle of the bean…excuse me.. "the Cloud"
 Can you find us?

I also don't miss the people congestion…. This place was packed and I was told that it was usually more packed than on the day we went. The best way to explain the fountain is by reading about it here.  Genius really!
The kiddos had a blast getting their feet wet. 

There was much more to see and many more pics, 
but I will post those at some later time. 

After visiting the city for a full day, it was great to go back to the quiet comforts of home, away from the beeping horns, to our quiet sunroom and the sounds of birds and our fountain. It felt wonderful to breath in the newly planted lavender and scented candles as opposed to the smell of exhaust fumes and smoke.  
I used to miss the city… the liveliness… how everything is open late…how everything is a bus stop away. I felt isolated when I first moved to the suburbs. But, boy am I glad I did. Although the history and architecture and attractions are magnificent, (the suburbs have a little bit of that too) the suburbs  make me slow down, plan for tomorrow and just take it one day at a time without ---no rushing like a madwoman. Ahh home… now to relax…

Who am I kidding… I have two kids under 7 with more energy than I ever had at that age….. I was able to sit down for 2 minutes before I started to clean up after them - the doorbell rang and company came in…. but good company. 
We ate cake and laughed until midnight, here in my quiet suburb. 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

On not some more, S'mores

I do love Hershey's Chocolate - the simple plain kind.
I can remember those rare moments when we had these in our home and my mom appreciating the fact that they were templated and easy to cut away for her tribe of kids, sat and gave each one of us an equal piece. I love how they melt in your mouth.

I like marshmellows too…. mostly in my Chocolate de Abuelita. I found these giant size ones at Walmart. Lttle G tried to stuff one in his mouth and I watched in horror worried that he would not be able to breath. He decided it was to big and popped it out…whew.

Now Graham Crackers are just simply good. Smear some peanut butter, or cream cheese and apricot jam and you are good to go.  Or, dip them in coffee just as they are. They are wonderful to bake with.

So I like the components of smores….but smores? I am most definetely and positevely not a smores enthusiast. As a matter of fact, I had my first smore at 18 years of age and I was not impressed. However, it is my duty as an American Born mommy to introduce these delights to the kiddos.  They like me, were equally unimpressed. Atleast I tried.


Friday, June 15, 2012

Spring's End

Its hard to believe that summer will be here in about 5 days. We have had over eight 90 degree days making this spring feel more like the dog days of summer.
There is concern in the gardening community that our change from zone 5 to zone 6 was a bit premature, that what should be flowering in late September is trying to flower now and that this is only the beginning of major climate changes. Taking everything in stride, I think I will not worry but instead enjoy this odd weather. And enjoy I have….

Enjoying the fruits of gardening...

Enjoying a little bit of craft time.
These little water havens for the birds are super easy to make. And, they don't mind the chip on the bowl like we do. 
Here is what I used:
a porcelain drill bit
a screw of the same diameter of your drill bit  
a plastic washer or two (keeps the water in)
an old bowl (I used a porcelain bowl but this perhaps can work with a plastic bowl and then I won’t need to use a porcelain drill bit – gonna try it the next time with all of the bowls the kids are outgrowing)
a wooden rod or a doll rod like I used here (ya know when that broom goes bad, save that stick if its wooden- it may do the trick)
a drill

How I used what I had
1 and 2) With a porcelain drill bit, drill a pre-marked hole at the center of a small bowl and another at the center of the wood rod. Be careful here since drilling in the center of a small diameter is tricky. Go slooooowwwwllly. You don’t want to crack the bowl or drill your hand. I drilled onto the bowl by setting it on the grass instead of a table or my hand. The grass gave it a nice cushion and also saved my hand. I drilled onto the wood rod by setting that deep into the grass and dirt.

3) Assemble your new garden piece in the following order:
  ---wood rod----plastic washer---bowl----plastic washer----screw

4) Gently secure the screw with a drill or a screwdriver. The washers should protect the bowl from cracking if you use a drill and keep the water in.

I DID NOT use a plastic washer on top- I used a metal one- but its working like charm;) I just hope it doesn’t rust. Now place your water haven for the birds where you want to see them. I cannot keep count of how many little birdies are having a drink at this one. Just keep the water clean- you don’t want mosquitos using the bowl to nest. 

Enjoying the flowers

 …and to think this baby cost under $2! 

Enjoying the view of the neighbors container gardens…. so colorful…so cheerful... 

Waiting patiently for harvest time and for flowers we have 
not seen in a year to visit us this summer….

Enjoying visits from the locals…

And enjoying the simplicities of life at home
 I think we are off to a good summer in this part of the woods 
and I pray that is the same where you are too.

Good Bye Spring… 
Spring, your stay was a short one this year
But I know you will come back my dear
Thank you for the blooms
And for driving away the winter gloom
Thank you for the edibles you've brought
Notice I did not let a single one rot?
Please do stop by again 
Oh, won't you stay longer my friend?
I see, I see…. you must go
Summer is about to show
I will wait patiently for you next year 
And perhaps you can stay longer next time, my dear.
By Gabli

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