Sunday, May 31, 2009

Friends + Florida + Gators + Beaches = FUN!!!

Holy cow, what an amazing week. To Florida and back, we had a great time and got to see James, Lilly, Randall, David, Coach, Lil and Juila! We traveled all day Thursday and arrived to smiling faces of James and Randall. It was amazing considering it was well after 10pm, both James and I were awake, in good spirits and chatty for the whole ride home. In spite of the late night, we had a bright morning (James much earlier than Mom and me), and we had a blast playing with all of James' toys. The singing bass was a huge hit and it made "everyone in the room laugh!" (that's what I kept telling Mom, that if we were in the room, and the fish was singing then you had to laugh!). We danced, played with race cars, puppets, and musical instruments. After breakfast, Randall, James, Mom and I headed over to Wakulla Springs state park and enjoyed an ice cream followed by an amazing boat tour of the springs... we saw so much wildlife I was amazed! Alligators, turtles, fishes and birds of all sorts, nesting, babies swimming, sunning, flying, foraging. It was a beautiful and fun tour. It was just long enough (okay, maybe five minutes too long for me... I was tired!), the sun was out, folks were playing in the springs, really a lovely morning. We got back to James's house and took a nap and played a bit in their yard and visited with their new chickens before heading out to Cape San Blas where Coach & Lil had us over for the rest of the weekend at their beach house. Once we arrived at the beach-house I spent very little time inside... They have a beautiful screened in porch, complete with a swing that we had to try out then we headed directly out to the bay where we played in the warm beautiful water, found crown conchs, lightening whelks, bivalves and horseshoe crabs! Plus it was so calm and shallow, that it was perfect for belly-flops and splashing around. What a great evening activity. Got back to the house and James and I got our dinner, then I spent much of the rest of the night not allowing a very tired James to sleep, I was too wound up and a little bit off of the local time. We got up the next morning and Coach, Lil and Julia were up at the Big House, so we joined them for breakfast.... PANCAKES!

The morning wasn't complete until we had headed out to the bay one more time, this time David just took James and me out because it was just a little cooler and Mom wimped out. Just as well, we went exploring! When we got back, and hosed off... Lil had a stroke of brilliance and brought out the tub. We spent most of the rest of the morning playing in the tub and then running around on the deck blowing bubbles and chatting with Lilly before heading out to the Raw Bar. What a treat, James and I enjoyed yummy sausage dogs while the grown-ups enjoyed oysters and gumbo! Lilly even joined us at the big table, I loved hanging out with her and was very sweet with that sweet little girl. I managed a quick nap on their beautiful porch before waking up and heading out to the beach! So the Cape, on the side with the beach house is a shallow calm bay that we had been playing in, but just across the street is a great white beach along the gulf coast, with mini-waves, seashells and beautiful sand. We played in the water, the waves took a little bit getting used to for me, but once I did, I had a blast. I liked sitting in the wash zone and getting pushed around by the water... or when David picked us up and jumped with us in the waves that came in. And, of course, digging deep holes in the sand with my trusty shovel.
We headed back to hose off again, play in the tub some more and eat watermelon. We thought these activities were best completed in the buff

because, well, who needed to get their clothes all wet or messy with watermelon... and man were we messy, it was convenient to be able to just hose off after the melee. I couldn't even come close to keeping up with James on the watermelon eating contest. We were finally convinced to put some clothes on and kept right on enjoying our evening. Coach taught me a bit of math, Even Lilly and I got a little bit of quality time together.
James, Lilly and I sat down to a nice kid's dinner. The kimbro kiddos headed to bed, but I remained quite awake, so I just "sat" on the couch while the adults ate their meal... and the term sat really means that I destroyed their couch making forts or as I call them hedgehog holes and creating general, localized mayhem, but at least was mostly quiet while doing so, if not just a bit distracting for Mom. I finally hit the hay after a most wonderful, water-filled fun-filled day. Mom and I headed out on Sunday relativlely early and I was so good the whole long long day home. Mom even got a little bit of reading in while I played with the boy behind us. Dad picked us up and showed off the mostly completed fence that he and Dan have been working hard on this weekend while we were away. Looks good, pictures to come when it's all done :) It was an awesome weekend and I miss my friends. I am so glad we got to spend such wonderful times with everyone in Florida! Love you guys!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Running, splashing, celebrating!

Man I love summer, lots of time outside, with our friends, running running running around.... oh with some ice cream thrown in there too! Swim lessons continue, and I am doing extra super well. In fact, I fancy that I can start swimming on my own and try every time we're supposed to be at the wall practicing our kicks. Luckily, the water is only about chest deep, but I am getting the idea. I love swim lessons... disco dancing and all! Friday, we headed to Sophia's for art and had a fine time painting with our feet... though the water was a bit much for the paper, we had a great time looking at all of the colors we could paint ourselves. We ended our afternoon with a trip to Tart, the ice cream joint on Division, where we met up with Joaquin and his family and friends. Joaquin and I wore complementary shirts and enjoyed a great Ice cream and quick walk around. Saturday, we headed over to the farmer's market
and an afternoon of running errands and filling up our front-yard garden box with compost from our bin out back... thus combining two of my favorite gardening activities... digging and finding worms! I am an expert! We ended our lazy Saturday with a nice cookout with Linda, Matt and Andy... salad from our farm (Abundant Harvest has started up again! Yay) and lamb kebobs and horsing around on the grass. Sunday was Benjamin's birthday! He is 2 and awesome. He had us over for a lovely party including some delicious cake and painting! We were all great artists and ended up with quite the gallery of beautiful paintings. Our work is very serious. After Benjamin's party, we headed over to the Rhododendron garden and enjoyed the end of the Rhody season. It was a lovely afternoon, flowers were still out and beautiful and the ducks and geese were rounding up for some feed! Such a great day for running all around and having a lovely time. In fact I spend much of my time these days doing doughnuts with my backhoe. I'm really really good at circles! It was a perfect day. I went to bed early, the folks assumed it was because I had been so busy, but turns out I wasn't feeling too well (as evidenced by two changes of sheets later that evening). However this morning I turned up roses, and am feeling great! In fact, Dad and I ended up at Smith and Bybee lake to do some kayaking and fishing, I saw an eagle, osprey, and carp! I had a great time, and ate and drank well. Dad and I went on a play-dough hunt and after running all around found some at the drug store next door. We finished as we nearly began this fun weekend with more ice cream at with Joaquin, Val and Ray. What a wonderful weekend. I hope you have all enjoyed a long weekend and taken an opportunity to remember those who have served our country so proudly and so well; thank you.