The intangibility of memories

Not long ago, I began a new board on Pinterest when I was feeling particularly nostalgic for my childhood. Specifically, I was remembering the McDonald’s near I-95, down Hollywood boulevard. That was the one with the indoor playground. I remember it had a green floor in that area that was slightly spongier than normal tiling. There were two Filet-o-fish bouncers that sprung back and forth, a slide, and a little climbing type house. But not much else. I was not able to find any photos of pre-plastic monstrosity indoor playplaces but it was one of my favorite places to go.

This led me down a wormhole of things I remember as a kid: Teddy Ruxpin, Lite Brite, telephones with long curly cords(!), Oregon trail, Muppet Babies, Picture Pages, smelly stickers! The list goes on and on and all these faded images made me feel young again – made me relive the feeling of being that kid again. There are few things  today than can replicate how wonderful it is to think back on these memories. And every time I get into one of these reveries, I feel as if I can’t *quite* reach the true feeling I want to. I can’t touch them; they’re just fuzzy images in my head but oh, for that brief moment, I am a carefree little girl who likes to ride her scooter over the hump of grass out front and catch a slight bit of air before landing in the street. I am the girl who runs around the perimeter of my huge yard because I love the speed and the feeling of being fast. I am the girl who builds Lego houses and names all the little Lego men. I’m a good student who puts everything into her work and I seem to have balance in my life: school, homework, play, tv, family.

These days I struggle to make sure everyone gets their respective lunches; did all children get a towel for water day? Did I pull out cash for various activities? Is it laundry day? Bottles have to get washed and clean laundry sits in baskets for far too long. I have these grand delusions of you know, reading a book or getting other work done once kids go to bed. But I am always exhausted.

When something triggers a childhood memory though, boy, that’s a magical little moment in my day. Instantly transported back to jelly bracelets and velcro shoes. Riding on the back of my dad’s bike, getting slushies from a trailer parked by the beach. I’m the kid my dad took to McDonald’s for his favorite filet-o-fish sandwich and who he graciously watching  play on the plastic toys, the slide, the swings. In that moment, I am free.

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Random Tuesday – What you do when you own a house, sleepover woes, brain tabs

Stacy

 

 

  • SO, as I mentioned yesterday, we bought a new fridge and let me tell you, Saturday is going to be magical. I cannot wait to start moving all my food into it. Tonight, however, we tackle the useless cabinets. You know how all those so-called “easy” projects go: you start off thinking it’ll be over in no time and things inevitably complicate it. I CAN wait to do that. I know it’s going to be annoying.
  • I then have to clear out a spot in our garage for the old fridge, which I’m excited about too because you know how things can pile up. It’ll be nice to start throwing crap away and making it slightly more organized.
  • Speaking of, we’re about to bite the bullet on separating the boys. Isaac is going to move back into the playroom, which was the nursery before. We figured Ell would want that room, as it is larger, but he wants to stay put. I guess it was the first room he had after the crib so maybe he has a certain affinity for it. And it might be best for Isaac to have the room further down the hall, since he’ll probably end up in bed before Elliot here soon, as Ell gets older.
  • When we move Isaac, we’re going to have a toy draft. Everything in that room will get pulled out and they’ll have time on the clock and take turns picking what they want for their respective rooms. Then we’re going to – hopefully – take the rest and have a garage sale.
  • I feel like we’re in the midst of so many projects right now: fridge, room reorganization, patio re-do, Ash’s server switch (to a smaller box for storage), our bathroom (tile and vanity); we also want to get rid of our big-ass bed frame and buy a king sized with a small frame. I don’t need fancy headboards, just a small frame and a larger sleeping area.
  • Add onto that planning a party. We have a groupon for a bounce house rental so we’re thinking a back-to-school party and then when family comes for that, we’ll also do a little celebration for Dakota’s first. We’re not planning to do a big bash for Elliot this year; he has chosen to invite a couple friends for a sleepover. Let me ask you: since it is his birthday thing, do we have a cake for us and those kids? Maybe just cupcakes and order pizza? Ash is worried about having four boys for a sleepover. When Ell went to Addy’s house, I  found it interesting that when the parents said it was time for bed, Addy went to his room and they put Ell on this couch in a little back room. Do kids no longer bring a sleeping bag and camp it on the host kid’s floor?
  • I always think summer will be more laid back but it’s proving not true. I am feeling another beach trip here soon, but looking at all this, I have no idea when we’ll do it. I have upcoming dentist/doc appointments as well so, ugh! Everything feels so overwhelming. Welcome to being a mid-30s parent/wife/homeowner, right?97648ecbd29fcb1709d349fde097b042

MMMM + Holiday weekends rock

Hi, how are ya? Happy Monday! Ok, it may not be a happy Monday for you but let’s make the best of it eh?

Let’s see, my long weekend was pretty darn good. On Friday morning, we did our two workouts and then I did a bit of weeding. We went out for hibachi and then we took naps. Well, I don’t think I did. I cleaned my house because around 3, we got prepped to have my friend and her family over. They came around 4 and the kids played on our new Slip ‘n slide and we had races and dragged almost all the yard toys out. We watched the end of the 4 o’clock soccer game and grilled and had cupcakes. It was awesome. They didn’t even leave until quarter to nine! It’s always funny how my kids always want everyone to stay when it’s time for them to go. We made plans to watch the final soccer game next Sunday at their house so the boys are stoked about that.

On Saturday, it was Ash’s birthday so I picked up bagels and let him sleep in. We went to Sonny’s for lunch and I baked him a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting. At night, I had planned a babysitter so I put Baby Girl to bed and Ash and I went to Longhorn and then saw Transformers. We’re both long-time fans of the cartoon; it was an OK movie. I’m a geek about the Dinobots so those alone made the almost three hours worth it but there IS such a thing as TOO much action. Chase scene after chase scene gets old. I love the Sunday of a three day weekend; I appreciate it a lot more than normal weekends. We started the morning slowly but then got out to Lowes. We have to replace our water pipes so the plan was to buy a new vanity and tile so we could finish our bathroom at the same time, since the plumber would already need to rip stuff out. Well, the longer we looked at stuff, the more we were convinced that the project could wait. Ash said all the plumbers he spoke with were surprised we were replacing them. Yes, the galvanized pipes are breaking down, but they aren’t completely busted. So instead of going over budget to get it all done, we decided to buy a new fridge. Ours was thrown in with the house when we bought it nine years ago and it’s a.) small and b.) not a great design, with a water dispenser INSIDE the door. As in, you have to stand in there to fill your cup. So, we found one at Lowes marked way down due to two tiny dents!Standalone_1175X1290

 

I can’t even begin to explain how excited about this I am. We have to break down a small cabinet in order to fit it in, height-wise, but that space is useless anyway. Who puts a cabinet above the fridge? Dumb. It gets delivered next Saturday and before then, we’re going to clear a spot in the garage for the old one. We may keep it for extra storage. So yeah, yesterday was nice. Got laundry done and went to Target in the evening then we capped everything off by watching this show on NatGeo about the 90s. It’s subtitled “The last great decade?” You know, they might be right. So far, not impressed with the 2000s.

I didn’t get much sleep last night so this morning, I have a large Dunkin’ Donuts coffee, which is great but I’m a little bitter; my debit card was compromised somehow last week so I cannot transfer funds to my DD perks card. Sigh. It happens. I just have to wait until they send my new one. BUT, it’s a new week and I get excited about new beginning so hey, let’s all be thankful.

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It’s a freebie week and I was on Pinterest this morning, thinking about my childhood, prompted by that show last night. I started looking for my favorite theme songs and here are a few.

I watched a lot of soap operas growing up and this one has always been a favorite. Throughout college, I would play this for Ash; it became a joke of ours. (Poor quality but this was the best rendition of it.)

And the One Life to Live one, the one with Todd, who was totally hawt.

Why not; let’s go for Y&R too:

Let’s move onto great TV themes:

Here are a few more great cartoon themes:

Writer’s Workshop – Favorite June Photo

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This week, I chose my favorite photo from June and explain it.

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We’d already exhausted all of our hotel options at that point: the pool was out due to rain, we’d been in the arcade a bunch of times, and eating was too expensive. Ash was busy with his conference so we were left to fend for ourselves. I’m not made of money so we opted for walking around Downtown Disney again, with no intention of actually shopping. Luckily, my sister and her boyfriend happened to be off the Wednesday we were in O-Town so they joined us. The walk from our hotel to DD was only about a half block but the sun in Central Florida can be brutal and by noon when we got there, we were hot and sweaty. We moseyed about some of the shops we’d avoided on our trip there the day before, looking at Christmas ornaments, other Disney shlock. The boys rode the little train and spent a good hour excavating in the T-Rex store. We walked nearly the entire  length of the attraction then decided to stop for food.

We ate some deep fried stuff and then got caught in a thunderstorm, huddling under our little umbrella on the patio then diving between stores to make it back to the hotel. By the time we did get back, the rain had stopped and the sun was out, so the pavement was steaming and the air was so thick it was like walking through soup. Finally, we emerged into the hotel’s freezing cold air and wove our way to our room. It was a rather large affair and took a while to get back, since they had escalators in the conference entrance and we had a stroller, so we had to seek out the elevators. Once back in our room, my sister played with the baby for a bit and Justin entertained the boys with jokes and juggling. Finally, they had to leave in order to avoid I-4 traffic on their way back to Sanford. My boys argued about resting once it was quiet and Baby Girl was napping so instead of fighting them, I turned on some cartoons and tended to some work I had. Turning around to ask them something, I found that they’d both straight up passed out. It was kind of charming to see them so peaceful, both with their doggies they can’t seem to give up. They had been kind of annoying during downtimes on this vacation but watching their chests slowly rise and fall with each breath as they recouped their energy was a moment I cherished.

July Goals –

Well, I tried to start Whiny Wednesday but as it turns out, I don’t have all that much to complain about! I am sure this is a good thing but it kind of foils my blogging plans. My complaints lately are minor: the cupcake shopped closed at 8 and I pulled in at 8:10; there is somehow a mosquito in my office; we’re having a hotter than usual summer. Other than that, things are good. So instead of complaining today, I am going to link up for this July goals linky, hosted by Karen and Miss Angie.

Monthly Goals

Since I didn’t do June with this link, we’ll revisit some of the to-do list items I had been talking about and let’s see if I got them done:

  • Put St. George Island sticker on car
  • Clean out car; Windex inside of windshield
  • Water kitchen windowsill cactus
  • Rinse off camp chairs – sand sticks to them
  • Order new ones of these
  • Get a pedicure
  • Book vet for boarding in June
  • Sort through Baby Girl clothes; some no longer fit
  • Change crib bedding
  • Vacuum hair on bathroom floor
  • Get a haircut
  • Have Elliot write thank you notes to people who did the Flat Stanley project
  • Experiment with some Pinterest recipes
  • Take a damn vacation! 

OK, so I didn’t do three of those. Not bad!

JULY GOALS:

  • Finish reading Kingdom Come
  • Eat more salads
  • Find the patience to discover new music
  • Get to the beach at least two times
  • Get my boys registered for flag football
  • Keep up this excellent tan
  • General catching up

Random Tuesday – Summer, Storm, Shaun T

Stacy

 

  • Like most of you, I can’t believe it’s July. My desk calendar yesterday said something to the effect that 1/3 of the summer and long lingering days were gone, so I should take advantage of every moment. Kind of puts things into perspective; how often do we really sit down and make a conscious effort to be in the moment and really appreciate the now? 7d384985ec56dd7cdbeda4f8c57c330e
  • I am going to make sure I do that today: appreciate what I have: the kids, a comfortable house, enough money, and a great husband.
  • Speaking of, I am trying to figure out a way to take him out Saturday night for his birthday. Nothing fancy, maybe just a quick dinner and Transformers. What I need to find, however, is a babysitter.
  • Do you know about these Derecho storms? I just learned that this was a thing yesterday. I mean, I understand sudden stormfronts  but never knew there was a term.6c568a01829b5239678c40cc559270f3
  • I swear that happened the other night: it rained for, like, 10 minutes then stopped and when I went outside, I could see a clear definition between clear sky and the storm. Crazy; nature is crazy.
  • Did I tell you that I finally figured out what that mystery plant is? Remember I was complaining that I kept seeing it around but didn’t know what it was called? Well, I emailed the director of FSU’s nurseries and they kindly replied with a whole bunch of info on what it is: “The plant is called Dyckia  ‘Cherry Coke’-it is a rare plant from Brazil with bronze-colored leaves. When grown in full sun, the leaves take on a striking burgundy or wine-red color that definitely looks like cherry cola!”  Problem solved!
  • You know how that huge company Monsanto is “bad” and people should supposedly boycott it? Yeah, though I agree with being anti- big corporations taking over, have you seen the list of foods not to buy? That’s, like, half my pantry/fridge. I just don’t have it in me to a.) fork over money to buy the other brands and b.) keep on top of the no-buy items. I mean, I’m pressed for time as it is; I’m going to put a Lean Cuisine in my bag just for the sheer ease of it. It’s like how I say I won’t shop at Wal-mart but I will… if I can’t find it anywhere else. I don’t make a point of going there but hell, if it’s there and cheap, I’m doing it. Morals be damned.
  • I lost another two pounds, I realized, as I weighed myself on Sunday. That nine down since I began T25. You have to imagine I have gained muscle; my legs are ridiculous and my obliques? They’re there! I mean, I still have baby flab in the front by there’s definitely muscle underneath now. Shaun T is kicking my ass into gear!744fae1ea56ce91265f236b0819bcd63

 

MMMM + Didn’t want to work today

For the most part, I am fine being at work but a tiny part of me just really enjoyed being off this weekend. With the exception of having to deal with Dakota being off on Friday, it still worked out fine. Ash and I got our workouts in then got the boys. He went out that night but I took them all to the mall where we ate Chik-fil-a and walked around. It was nice, except for when Isaac kicked Elliot’s drink out of his hand in Children’s Place and it spilled. I made them go to the lady at the counter and ask for paper towels. She was exceedingly kind and patient with them and they learned a good lesson. Took ‘em home and promised that if they took their bath while I put baby to bed, they could watch a movie. And ::shock:: they agreed on one and everyone was happy! It was a damn near miracle.

On Saturday morning we had a birthday party for Beau, one of my friend’s kids. He and Ell have been friend for a long time. They had a big bouncie/water slide, snacks, and pizza. One of the girl on Ell’s soccer team two years ago lives near my friend so their families became friends. Well, Jen (the mom) has four kids, her youngest being nine months, so she and Dakota had a little baby party. That wore everyone out so we took naps, which was excellent. It’s hot this year, seemingly hotter than normal in June, so it’s nice to lay around in the cool dark of our rooms in the middle of the day. We went to the grocery store in the afternoon and then before I made a big steak dinner, I mowed the backyard and cleaned up some. I felt really motivated to with the new neighbors and all but let me tell you about that:

When I got home on Friday, I noticed a lot of people in their backyard, then saw a little baby, maybe one, and a boy Isaac’s age. So I let the dogs out and used that as a way to break the ice. The woman I spoke to first is the daughter-in-law of the old folks who actually live there. So from what I can gather, the old people have two sons here with their families, that include kids and grandkids. They have two great grandchildren who are one and then the boy, who is four. The sons seemed pretty nice as well and we had a pleasant conversation about the neighborhood and the old neighbors, whom they never met. I feel a little better now about them, especially considering that the old old lady came over and did say hi, though she wasn’t that talkative. So the best I can hope for is that when they visit, Edward can play with Isaac. Also, the reason they were all outside is because they put up a fence. See, my old neighbors had a wooden fence on only three sides; they left our chain link between us so we could be neighborly. The only barrier they had was a fence around their little patio where the Jacuzzi was. Well, the new people ripped that up and put a wooden fence between us. To be honest, it looks nice and I actually kind of like it there. I can tan in my yard without anyone seeing me, so that’s a plus.

SO, Sunday. I felt the cleaning bug early so I got vacuuming and laundry going while Ash mowed. We had burgers for lunch and then attempted to go to the pool but it was apparently closed for an all day meet. I guess I should have checked their schedule but it was like, the only time they were closed. SIGH. But we made the best of it by going up to another one of the city pools. In all honesty, Forest Meadows’ pool is a joke but we still had a good time. The boys didn’t want to just go in a normal pool, after missing out on the fun activity pool but it turned out they had fun anyway. So we did that for a few hours then came home for tacos and started watching The Hobbit. These boys can watch those movies time and again, I tell you.

All in all, a good weekend. I am hoping to put something together with friends for Friday but I won’t hold out hope. We always try to get together and it’s just hard to do. Anyway, got to get working here but let’s tend to the theme this week, which is celebratory songs, in honor of Independence Day! (And then songs that describe you, which is pretty hard to do!)

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You know me and Jimmy Buffett so here’s a good one in the vain of Prince’s 1999:

OK so now, songs that describe me. How about this one that exemplifies how I feel?

And this is cheesy – I KNOW – but I always consider myself loyal and, well, this song is perfect for that.

Friday Confessions – Don’t skip the coffee

 

I confess… I will never again make the mistake of skipping coffee in the morning. Yesterday, I woke up terribly thirsty so I had some water and on my way into work, stopped at Tropical Smoothie. It was refreshing but not what I really needed. By 10:30 I felt like a zombie: my head ached and I couldn’t even see straight. I reloaded my Dunkin’ card and walked over to get an iced latte. But I clearly didn’t hit the final submit on the reload because the money didn’t go in. I just figured something went wrong, as they slid my card and it still only had a dime on it. The manager came out and gave me a free drink and helped me set up the app. I then reloaded my card for real and bought a donut, thanking them profusely.

I confess… I had a less than pleasant call at 3:45: daycare. The Florida rule is that more than one excessively watery (i.e. gross) diaper is grounds for being sent home. SO, Dakota had to go. I guarantee it’s only teething but since some other kid left earlier in the week with something viral, they were extra cautious. But I was PISSED. Couldn’t she do this on a Wednesday so the 24 hours would be over before Friday? Couldn’t she do this on a non-pay day Friday so one of us wouldn’t have to stay home, thereby ruining our date day? NOPE. Such is life. I was pretty damn mad about it yesterday but today, I know that I have no choice and I accept it.

I confess… I skipped T25 yesterday to rest my foot. Everything about my right foot hurts and those movements just exacerbate it. Feeling pretty good today so I might be able to get through the two workouts. Both will be mostly upper focus so it’ll be low impact on my foot anyway.

I confess… I realized yesterday that I have been very stressed all week. I think that is why I went to bed so early Wednesday night with an awful headache. And why last night I didn’t much feel like eating. I made dinner for everyone then went to Target because we were out of things that apparently people needed ASAP. Sigh. It was nice though because a hardcore storm had blown through and the sun shone sprightly on one side of my car while on the other, the leftover clouds of the storm lingered.20140626_191927

 

I confess… I needed AC/DC to get going today. Big Gun, Thunderstruck, For Those About to Rock…

I confess… I always wanted a necklace like the below but always hoped someone would buy me one. Well, I decided to just get it for myself; and I love it!

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I confess… I have a ton of things to do today and I WILL get them done. I am feeling so motivated too; it’s a rare excellent feeling. I’ve noticed as I get older that very few things make me as excited as I remember being as a kid. This came up the other morning when Elliot and I heard on the radio that they apparently have this new niche market for adult summer camps. As far as I can tell, they pretty much do the same activities, just with adults. Sounds awesome if you ask me! Here’s one to check out, if you’re interested. If I was closer I would totally go!

 

That’s all for today; everyone enjoy your weekend!

Currently

Stolen from Kenzie; done before but needed blog fodder today. SO, Currently I am:

 

READING | Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. So far I like it. The 80s references are great but it’s depressing that I can imagine our world being this way.ready_player_one_by_sepiawolf-d5iw7bc

WATCHING | World Cup, mostly. When Game of Thrones ended, we haven’t’ picked anything else up.

LISTENING TO | If you know me at all, Jimmy Buffett.

LOVING | These “vintage” v-neck shirts I found at Old Navy. I needed a new one to replace my old brown shirt from there and though they haven’t a single bit of brown in their current line, these are super soft and wash great! They fit even better after the first wash.Old-Navy-Vintage-Tee-Product-Photo

WANTING | To do some fun things with the family but with the energy needed. I feel exhausted and blah every weekend so it’s hard to make plans. (OK, last week we made it to the beach so I should stop.)

NEEDING | Clarity. Simplicity. I have some possible new things on the horizon and they might bring this about for me.

GETTING READY FOR | class, and working on editing a manuscript.

EXCITED ABOUT | The fact that it’s summer and I do feel a sense of laid-back-ness. It was actually hard to think of something I’m truly excited about. All I could think about was how I might be getting some extra money soon and it’s like, should I be happy about that as much as I am? I kind of hate money, in principle.

THANKFUL FOR | The fact that I have a job and money and great kids and for the most part, stability in my life. Silly, I know, but I just feel grateful for those things.

Random Tuesday – Off my game

Stacy

 

  • Yesterday I had to backtrack because I managed to forget my wallet. It wouldn’t have been a big deal – I somehow had my credit card in my bag – but my wallet contains my checkbook and camp fees are due on Mondays. Today, I had it at the forefront of my mind to grab Isaac’s scooter for bike day and I still somehow forgot it. I was three minutes late yesterday; thirteen today. This is totally unlike me. I am normally either on time or early!
  • I was kind of proud of myself last night. I started to drift off on the couch around 8 but when we rounded up the boys and got them in bed, I got up and did dishes, folded clothes, then stayed awake through an entire movie! We watched Delivery Man, which was actually pretty good. I’m a sucker for any movie about parents and children, I think.
  • I keep thinking today is Wednesday.
  • I already need more coffee.
  • I know this is short and I might wrote a long rambly thought-like post later but this first week is just busy!