31 May 2008

Gardens, Family, Friends (and maybe a new kitchen)

In the garden of each house we've shared, Chris and I have had peonys from his great-grandfather's garden. I think most of his relations have got a peony plant or three from Seedy's garden - it's fun to see familiar plants when we travel to visit family. Our plant struggled along the first three years in this house. It got a few buds last year but despite all the ants in our kitchen, the peony never had any ants, so didn't bloom. This year, no ants in our kitchen but plenty on the buds and look - peony blooms!

We shared dinner last night with Bibliofilly and her new friend. Between sickness and busy schedules, we haven't been together since the new year turned and it felt really good to see her again.
It was also a pleasure to meet her new friend and we hope to see them both again soon.

Today, we had dinner with another set of friends we haven't seen in a while. The kids spent the afternoon playing together (their little boy is two) and the weather cooperated so we were able to enjoy drinks on the porch and then grill dinner.

Tomorrow will find us busy with 3-on-3 hockey games and getting ready for Grandmoo and Aunt Kat to visit next weekend! We've got tickets for Jersey Boys and will attend the Ordination of a friend I grew up with.

In refi news, we're rate-locked! Appraisal should be this week and the bank thinks we'll be signed and funded by the end of June.

29 May 2008

Hope, Held Out

We're hoping to take advantage of this time of troubled housing market by refinancing our mortgage. If we're successful, the cash we get out WILL go to the kitchen renovation. Whatever other part of the house decides to crumble will just have to wait until the next refi!

28 May 2008

Word Verification Contest

Does Word Verification drive you crazy? Camille at Archives of Our Lives is running a contest that actually makes consideration of those pesky letters amusing. Act fast - it ends tonight!

26 May 2008

Summer Kickoff

We ventured to Vermont this weekend, to catch up with a part of my family I really haven't seen much in over twenty years. It was great! My happy memories of childhood trips up there are not delusions - the people and places are exactly as wonderful as I remember. Some of my cousins have married and have kids and it was great to learn that I'm as fond of the new family additions as I am of the old. The kids bonded instantly - you can't tell in this photo but they are actually wearing yellow hardhats and dangling from an I-beam.

We stayed with Awa (my grandmother), so the boys had a chance to be coddled in the morning with cups of her cocoa and to go exploring in the fields and woods, bringing back rock treasures and tales of secret trails to amaze her with. I loved falling asleep again to the sound of Awa's cuckoo clock and snuggling under the federdecke a few more minutes each morning until the clock would tell me the time.

My aunts took us on trips to the White River National Fish Hatchery, where the kids got to feed 4+ year old Atlantic Salmon (video), and to Neighborly Farms of Vermont, home of calves and lambs born this week - CUTE - and the first time Lars ever got to see a cow "manure" - NOT CUTE - which prompted him to declare, despite cute lambs and calves and the promise of fresh milk & cheese, that dairy farming is not for him.

We had something of a family reunion barbecue Sunday afternoon, with glorious weather and gorgeous views. Here's a group photo before anyone said, "Ross, put down the stick! Lars, stop sticking out your tongue!"

...and here's the same group, after:

All in all, a great time and we can't wait to go back!

05 May 2008


Kippah had hiccups this morning, marking the first time I've ever known a cat to have hiccups.

Three and a half years after putting my printer into service, I finally figured out how to have the pages print 1-10, instead of 10-1. I only had to re-order four printouts twice before I started remembering I no longer need to reverse the pages before stapling.

When Rob was over on Saturday, our lawn was getting close to knee-high. It's high enough that we could lose Ross in the yard today. I'm going to don a long calico dress and play Little House on the Prairie later.

I leave for the airport tomorrow at 6am. I should probably think about packing, or maybe doing some laundry so I will have something to pack. Kath, if you read this, I am not packing a party dress...so no formals, ok?


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