Summer Happenings


Things have been pleasantly dull around my house for the past few days.  We have been enjoying some sun by the pool, spending time with family and friends, eating (marshmallow pie, anyone?), and just generally have a good time.  Isn’t that what summers are for?   A little of this and a little of that…

1.  Bean is in swimming lessons right now (he finishes on Friday), and he is actually swimming!  Like, for real!  He can jump in the pool, swim, float, and manage wonderfully without his swimmies.   He has two awesome teachers, and he is just loving it.  I think we might see if he can register him for another round this summer because he loves it so much.  I’ve also taken to calling him Michael Phelps.  He doesn’t get it.  Oh, but he will…


2.  I recently finished my super trashy, completely not age-appropriate summer reading novel, “Beautiful Creatures.”  I could pretend I read it because I’m a middle school teacher, but that’s not true.  I just loves me some witch romance, y’all!  I cain’t help it!  I have now moved on to “Gone Girl.”  Funny thing about that book.  I was in the middle of reading it when my dad passed away, and so, for whatever reason, I just couldn’t finish it.  I had no desire to pick it up ever again.  I saw it at a girlfriend’s house the other day, though, and told myself I was being silly.  So, I’m reading it now.  I think I am close to the plot twist in the middle of the book I keep hearing about.  I have no idea what is going to happen, but after all the hype, I feel like I’m on a rollercoaster and we are slowly climbing to the top of the first drop.  The anticipation is killing me! 


3.  Gracie insists on wearing sunglasses everywhere she goes now.  But she has a hard time putting them on, and she won’t let me help her.  So, she walks around like this most of the time: 


4.  We are potty training with Gracie, and it’s going really great!  She is wearing panties almost all the time when we are home, and uses a Pull-Up when we go out.  She has about one accident a day, but usually she still tells me and she just has it on the way to the bathroom.  The hardest part of potty training Gracie is getting her to sit on the potty long enough.  I have tried singing songs, telling stories, reading books, asking questions, etc.  The other day, I got so desperate that I gave her a box of her bows and let her go to town on my head while she sat on the potty.  I think it’s a really attractive look.  Kind of like a hat.


5.  This weekend, Chris and some friends loaded up a dumpster that we rented with the wood from the old deck that they had torn down a while ago.  It was hot, heavy work, so after they finished, we all spent the afternoon out by the pool.  We floated all afternoon, and watched Bean show us his new swimming moves.  It was a pretty great day. 


6.  I have been missing my dad lately a lot.  I just haven’t been able to shake it.  It’s nice to be around my mom when that happens, so I called her on Sunday afternoon and asked if she wanted to come down and spend the night.  Turns out, she was in a similar little slump, so we had a nice two days together just shopping and talking and running errands and playing with the kids.  We both felt better by the time she left.  On August 11, it will be one year since my dad died.  I think we are all mentally and emotionally preparing for that time, and it’s nice to know that we can do that together.

7.  The other day after swimming lessons, I was trying to think of something to do with the kids.  I had left the house without any plans at all, and I was racking my brain trying to think of somewhere we could go play.  Finally, I decided to duck into our local library branch.  I needed a new book to read, and they have a pretty good children’s section for the kids to play in.  Lo and behold, we walked in and standing in the entry foyer was a library staff member directing people to the children’s hour!  We were right on time!  We scooted in, sat down, and listened to a few books being read and sang some songs together.  It was a lot of fun, and it made me so thankful to be a teacher and have opportunities like this with my kids during the summer.


8.  One day last week, we met a friend and her kids down at the Downtown Disney splash pad to play.  We ended up playing in the splash pad, and then spending a few hours walking around Downtown Disney.  We walked down to the Rainforest Cafe and looked at all the animals outside on the sidewalk, and then we walked down to see the boats coming in and out of the dock.  It was a nice change for our morning, and the kids had a great time.


9.  We have been having such fun little adventures that I haven’t done laundry in a very lonnnnnnng time.  The situation is so dire that I have to do a load tonight or else Bean won’t have any underwear in the morning.  Fo reals. 

10.  I made two recipes the other night from Pinterest and BOTH worked!  I made lemon chicken (which I cannot say without thinking about Deborah from “Everybody Loves Raymond,” I even called it “Deborah’s Lemon Chicken!”) and for dessert I made a s’mores pie.  I was testing out that recipe for the 4th of July, and it was AWESOME!  So delicious, and stupidly simple.  The recipe calls for homemade graham cracker crust, but I just bought one.  Made it even simpler and still so yummy.  Make both.  You’ll love them!

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13 Thoughts to “Summer Happenings”

  1. kirsten

    sounds like a great summer. I love library story time. next time you’re at Downtown Disney you should say hey to my brother – he’s in guest relations there. That’d freak him out. Well, I’m probably freaking you out now. Enjoy your summer!

  2. Carlene

    Ah, Gone Girl! My husband actually didn’t like me reading that book. I got so emotionally invested in it, that I started getting really short and irritated with my lovely husband because the characters were so mean and bitter with one another (especially after the big twist!).

  3. I’m glad you called your mum over, I’m glad that you are both there for each other. I was thinking about the anniversary of your day’s passing the other day, it really doesn’t seem like a year.
    Your summer looks so fun, Bean and Gracie have grown so much! I’m sure it can’t have been more than about two months since Gracie was born – time goes so fast. Enjoy the rest f your summer xxxxx

  4. Grandma Barnes

    I recognized you, Beanie, and Gracie in the picture by Bean’s back, your toes, and Gracie’s pink clogs! Trademarks!

  5. Grandma Barnes

    I recognized you, Beanie, and Gracie in the picture by Bean’s back, your toes, and Gracie’s pink clogs! Trademarks!

  6. Expect many, many, many plot twists in Gone Girl. My aunt and I were reading it at the same time. We texted each other all hours of the night about the book. It is ridiculous and amazing. I am reading bossypants by Tina Fey right now and I am so excited.

  7. LOVED Gone Girl! You’ll have to let us know what you think when you’re done!

  8. Sarah

    haha, gone girl is so awesome!!

  9. jenn v

    This twist from Gone Girl is so good. Hope you enjoy the rest of the book! Sounds like you guys are having a fabulous summer.

  10. KLMullins

    Loved Beautiful Creatures. Try the rest of the series they are great!!

  11. If you like to watch the boats and you have time, you should take the resort boat down to Port Orleans. My kids like riding and it’s FREE. Just make sure you have an hour or so…’s about 20 minutes each way, and if it’s busy, they make you get off and get back in line at Port Orleans Riverside. For a longer thrill, you can park over at the Boardwalk hotel–just let them know at the guard station that you want to go look around or go to the ESPN restaurant. You can board a boat there for EPCOT, and then take a round trip monorail ride to Magic Kingdom and back. Then get back on the boat to go back to your car. There’s a really fun ice cream shop called Beaches and Cream between the Yacht and Beach clubs where you can go for a sweet treat before returning to your car.

  12. Hi there, so happy to read you are enjoying your summer with your lovely kids. Sorry you are going through a hard period of extra missing your dad. Aren’t you so glad you moved to FL? you were able to call your mom and she was able to drive to your place and spend the night, that is a BIG plus of living close to family. Thanks for sharing as always! you are my favorite blog!

  13. That first anniversary of my dad’s death hit me pretty hard. And I was expecting it at all – it is good to be prepared.
    I LOVED having last summer off with the kids, but alas it was only maternity leave… Some day….

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