Thursday, May 29, 2014

Five Things Thursday

1. Sand under a microscope.

2. Find out what animals live in your area. http://enature.com/home/

3. Don't know what it is, but I have this living in my yard:
It's HUGE---the body is about 2 inches. With the legs, it's about 4 inches in circumference. Anybody know what it is? We've lived here for 29 years and this is the first time I've see it.

4. I love taking those goofy little tests on Facebook. Today I took one to see what my dominant personality trait is. This doesn't surprise me at all. I'm pretty amazed at how "right on" these little tests can be.
Your Dominant Personality Trait Is:
Prudence
You are a responsible and together person. You like structures and schedules. You don't mind having a long to-do list... in fact, you sort of like checking things off on it. You are a planner, and you rarely act on impulse. You know what you'll be doing tomorrow. You are dependable and polite. You do your best not to give anyone any trouble.

5. And for your entertainment:
Awesome Pepsi commercial.  Guess which one is my favorite? I like them all, but one more than the rest.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

How old is too old for a chair lesson?

We started our Memorial Weekend with a pool party. The day started with Butch giving all of our adult children and grandchildren "chair" lessons. We wouldn't expect anything less. Truthfully, the "kids" and by that I mean everyone---really needed to know how to operate these new chars. There is a little bit of a trick to them. We would like them to last for more than one season.

 The water was perfect! We had the music blasting and spent about 4 hours out here.

We had barbecued cheeseburgers, potato salad and baked beans for dinner. Morgan requested a yellow cake with chocolate frosting for dessert. 

I made one mistake. I put Stephanie in charge of pool drinks. We always joke that the girl can't cook. But with drinks, no cooking is involved. They weren't good. We're going to keep her on clean-up. Luckily, she's a good sport. She's really good at clean-up! She's pretty fortunate that Nicky cooks.

After dinner, the party was pretty much over. After a day in the sun, everyone was exhausted. No games. That's pretty unusual for us, but I have to say, I was tired too. 

On Sunday, everyone decided to go to the Renaissance Festival. Butch, Elizabeth and I stayed home. Elizabeth had a school project to do and wanted my help. 
The assignment was to make 15 of something that could be "sold" to her classmates. They've been earning play money all year. Now it's time to spend it. Elizabeth wanted to make a vase filled with sucker flowers. Of course she had to taste test one of the suckers.
They turned out so cute. Butch got some aquarium gravel for us to use in the vase to hold the flowers in place.
Just when I thought I was all finished with school projects! How could I turn down this little face?

Monday, May 26, 2014

There Was Never Any Doubt...

...that Morgan would graduate! She was on the honor roll all year and exempt from most exams. Way to go girlie!!
Stephanie---the proud mama. When did Morgan get so tall? The day started with a senior breakfast followed by the Baccalaureate Mass.
Morgan is pointing to The University of San Diego---her college of choice. At graduation, they announced that the class of 2014---only 56 students---had $12.5 M in scholarships! That is the highest amount in their history. That's an incredible average of $223,000 per student! Morgan got 4 or 5 scholarship offers. With the cost of college education these days, it certainly helps.
We all met at the club for lunch. The girls were taking "selfies." I had them take a picture of me because my arms are too short for "selfies." The only reason I added this photo is because I think the sky reflecting in the window is pretty cool.

The Lapps arrived in time to join us for lunch.
Back in the evening for the graduation ceremony on the White House lawn (not THAT White House). The weather couldn't have been more perfect. Cool. Usually, it is soooo hot!
 I loved this shot of the cross through the trees.
That's Morgan in the front row center.
The graduate posing with her Aunt Mindy. At the end of the ceremony, Butch and I were recognized for  having spent 30 years on the campus. We've worked hard for these schools over the years. It's a little bittersweet that we are finished now, with Morgan's graduation. And to think, I drove every day for about 27 of them!

Afterwards, we went back to the house for some Imo's pizza. Thanks Janet!!! What a treat---St. Louis pizza in Nashville. Sooo good.

Saturday was a family pool day. We ended it with a party and gifts for Morgan. She's all set for the next stage in her life. I don't think I am!


Fraud

Here's the story.

I received this email while I was at the beach.
USPS.COM
NotificationYour parcel has arrived at May 24th, 2014. Courier was unable to deliver the parcel to you.
Print your label and show it in the nearest post office to get a parcel.
*******************
I keep a folder that holds all receipts of things that I've ordered. I couldn't think of anything that couldn't be left, so I ignored this. I got this notice another time. Then, Stephanie asked me if I had received my Mother's Day gift. That's when I figured this had to be it.

I received another notice. This time, I clicked on "Print Shipping Label." I got the message that it "wasn't found." I tried it again. No luck. I just printed this email.

Butch took it to the post office. They told him that it is a fraud. Apparently, when you click on print shipping label, it will ask you to send money. Of course, I would never fall for that. Still, I hope that by clicking on it, I haven't infected my computer with something. I'm a Mac user, so I think it's unlikely.

Just wanted to give you a "heads up." There are so darn many ways to trick us. I try hard not to fall for anything. I wouldn't have fallen for it this time if it hadn't been for Steph adding to the confusion.

Oh, and by the way---my Mother's Day present was great!!! Bath balls from Lush! I think I'll use one today. I'll definitely be smelling good! Sandy brought me a soap and lotion set with a cute metal holder---Limoncello---an Italian collection from Bath and Body Works. It smells so good!!

The Lapps' left this morning. I'm going to get a few things caught up around here and then spend the afternoon reading.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Layouts from the Beach

Our beach trip was the ultimate get-away. Scrapbook in the morning, beach for 2 hours, lunch, pool for 3 hours, then scrapbook the night away. So---Much---Fun!!! Who wants to go? Let me know and we'll do it!!

About 3 weeks prior to the trip, I helped Karolyn and Pam get organized for the trip. Each week, I gave them an assignment---sort and print pictures, gather papers, etc. Since our space was limited, we could not take all the stuff that we normally do. I had each of us bring 3 punches, 3 rolls of washi tape and assorted embroidery floss. That way, we could share. It worked out perfectly. We were even able to share the alphabets we brought.
"I'm Holding Her Place" is about my friends, Connie and Karolyn. Ever since Karolyn retired, I've joked that she could be my BFF until Connie retired. The larger picture on the left was just perfect for the layout as you can see Karolyn in the background. I can't wait for Connie to retire. When our girls were little, we did a lot together---then she went back to work. I've been waiting over 20 years for her to retire.
My sister, Jeanne is the "Floor Dweller." Our brother, Ronnie dubbed her that because she was much younger than us---although, he didn't name her that until we were adults. It just makes me laugh and seemed like the perfect---"grab your interest"---title. I love titles that make you want to find out what the page is all about.
 "You Just Never Know Where You'll Find a Note" is about Jordan's habit of leaving notes for us. Many of them are hidden within a note pad---on the desk, in the car or just about anywhere.
 Whenever I have a long title, I like to use smaller stickers for part of it.
 I don't often spend a lot of time hand-stitching on my pages because it takes so long. In fact, years ago, when hand-stitching became a trend, I told my friends---"I've been a stitcher for over 35 years. When I start stitching on my scrapbook pages, you can just call the little men with the white coats." Luckily, I guess they forgot, because here I am---stitching more than I ever thought I would.
Here is that "note leaving" girl with her grandpa.
 "Snorkeling" is a layout about my first time. Old photos---back to around 1990.
 "Captured"----love that title----I filed it away in my brain---from Ali Edwards (I think).
 "The Reception" about Steph's wedding.

 More wedding---"mr. & mrs." The title is actually the invitation.
 I had a lot of photos that I wanted to use, so I made a fold-out.

 I do "LOVE these photos." Sam, the photographer, is a friend of Nicky and Steph's. He works for the newspaper. He had the BEST ideas for some shots. I love the close up of the wedding ring propped against Steph's high heel.

Mor layouts in another post. Next up will be Morgan's graduation.

Friday, May 23, 2014

What's Happenin'!

I am thankful for: Close family---there's nothing like it! Close friends are pretty awesome too!

From the kitchen: Gearing up for family fun, food and partying.

I am wearing: Work clothes.

I am hoping: To get to the grocery store and back home by 9 a.m.

I am reading: The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton. Pretty good so far, but I really haven't had the time to get "in" to it---although I'm at 30%.

I'm watching: Nothing at the moment. I did watch the finale of Amazing Race last night. Mindy WON the pool!

I am busy creating: Nada! Nothing! Nary a thing this week!

I'm bummed: That Greg and Mitchell aren't coming this weekend. It won't be the same without them.

I am hearing: The hum of the aquarium.

Around the house: Getting ready for a party!
Outside my window: It's going to be a gorgeous day and the garden is looking pretty good. Lots of flowers in bloom.
 New Dawn roses along the back fence behind the pool.

The Kousa dogwoods are always pretty---unlike most dogwoods, they bloom AFTER the leaves. They have a square shape about them that I love.

 I am thinking: I hate to see these two go:

We have had the best time---Judy on the left, Chrissy on the right. As much as I hate to see them go, I'm looking forward to these two coming!
They should be here early afternoon. Let the weekend begin!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Brief Post

Having fun with my cousins, but no time for a proper post. I'm sharing a recipe because they complained----well, not exactly complained----but whined that I have not posted a recipe in quite a while. That's because I haven't really made anything new lately. So much for my New Year's resolution! Anyway, enjoy this one.

Death by Cream Cheese
2 can crescent rolls
2-8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 stick butter

Spray 9x13 pan with Pam. Roll one can of crescents in pan. Mix cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Pour cream cheese mixture over rolls. Roll other can of crescents on top. Melt butter and pour over the top. Sprinkle with a cinnamon and sugar mixture. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Enjoy!!

Oh, and BTW---(by the way--for my "older" friends)---our turkeys are back!!! This morning, the tom was all fanned out. So awesome!! Unfortunately, they were a little too far and behind the trees for me to get a clear shot. Photo shot I mean---not gun!

Hanging at the pool today.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Just a Few Things

 What a difference two weeks makes! This is the original planting.
 This is just two weeks later. Now I'm thinking some things are going to be too tall.
The tallest is the chocolate mint. I'll just have to cut it back.
 I cut peonies and Virginia Sweetspire to greet my cousins who arrive tomorrow.
I decided to post the pictures because they read my blog. That way, if the flowers look "bad" by tomorrow, they will know what I originally intended!
NEVER in May have I had my fireplace lit. But since the temperatures have been so cool, I decided to take one last opportunity.

That's about it. Butch worked his tail off yesterday, pressure washing the patio. We always wait until the pollen is finished dropping. I don't know how his back can stand it. I Cleaned the front porch, furniture and columns and my back was killing me!

We're glad it's done---everything looks nice and fresh for the summer. I've scheduled my first pool party for next Tuesday. My cousins and I will test it out this week. It's going to be cold! Luckily, I have the type of floats that you actually sit above the water. That makes it not as cold. We'll see....

Lapps family arriving on Friday.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Heading Home

Heading home from the beach today. On to the next fun thing! My favorite cousins, Chrissy and Judy arrive on Tuesday. I'll be planning their visit in the car! Can't wait!

I'll leave you with two things:
One disgusting and One cute!
Disgusting:
 This is what happens to a Coke can that has been in the ocean for awhile.

And for the cute:
Mindy's cute, but that's not what I'm referring to. It's the cute little Solo cup shot glass! How cute is that? I want some just for fun!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Steeplechase

I've written posts on the Steeplechase before. It is a major social event for Nashville and a major fund raiser for Vanderbilt Children's Hospital. We've had our box for over 25 years now. Butch loves it. The girls love it. I used to. Now, it's just a really long day in the hot sun. Or rain.

This year, since my friends and I were headed to the beach, that allowed Butch to take the guys left behind AND Stephanie, Nicky, Mindy and Justin. Morgan used one of our wrist bands to gain entrance, but she hung out with her own friends. We get 8 wrist bands for our rather large "donation" to the event.

The planning starts about a month ahead---what to wear, what to drink, what to eat. But, by far, the most important parts of Steeplechase are the hats. To me, the racing is fun, the light betting is fun, seeing people you only see once a year is fun and hanging with friends is fun. But the most fun of all is people watching and seeing all the hats. Even the guys wear hats. It all began as a necessity to protect yourself from the sun. Hat-wearing has grown to become the most important part of the day. Now, the hats are worn to make a statement. If you're lucky, you get photographed for the newspaper.

Years ago, before we had a box, we were in the "infield." We were photographed and in the paper for our fabulous food set-up complete with floral arrangement. I'm telling you, this is a fancy affair. I'm happy that the girls enjoy it so much. I'm ready to pass the torch. Now if I could only convince Butch...
 Hugh, Bruce and Butch. We've taken many friends over the years. We've even had family from St. Louis come in town for the event.
I need to ask them why they traded hats. I'm not even sure which one is really Butch's.
Stephanie and Mindy had their headpieces made to match their dresses. Or, they make their own with a little help from me. Okay, a lot of help from me. Okay, they don't help at all. It's all me.
(Side note: I bought this cute little number while shopping with Sandy at the Disney store in Destin:
It's the cutest Tinkerbell hat. Mindy has been fascinated with Tinkerbell since she was little. I just couldn't pass it up.
It has wings on the back! I texted Mindy a picture of it, but then bought it before she responded. When she answered, she said, "I want it!" I know my girls. Unfortunately, it didn't make the Steeplechase "cut" this year.)
Justin and Nicky. This was Justin's first Steeplechase. I'm sure that Mindy told him that yellow pants are appropriate (and pink, baby blue and mint green---seersucker---no question).
Butch tells me that Mindy was quite offended when Justin's Boston Red Sox hat drew more attention than her elaborate headpiece. Justin is from Boston. I'm not quite sure how long he's been in Nashville.

Did I mention that beverages are a huge part of the day? You name it, we have it!

If you are familiar with the clothing line---Vineyard Vines---Steeplechase could be one huge advertising campaign for them.
Oh, that's right, this is what the day is supposed to be about!! Our box is on the finish line---perfect location.

Butch, Hugh and Bruce arrived at the beach last night and told us all about their escapades at Steeplechase. They all had a great time and are already making plans for next year. And so it begins...maybe I'll be at the beach again.