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January 3, 2016

Today is Sunday, and I slept in until 9:00.  I’ve been sleeping in for the past two weeks, including Christmas morning.  But, break is over at 6:20 tomorrow morning, and it is business as usual.  Victoria drove back to Charlottesville for her last semester today at noon.  She’s nervous and excited.  The butterflies have settled in.

This is also the start of my youngest last six months of high school.  Whew!  Different stresses are about to begin.  Go to college, get a degree, get a job, grow up!!!  I have a lot to show/teach him.  I guess the worries never end.

Vic and I spent most of this past week in Ft. Myers, Florida, visiting my sisters and neice, and their families.  It was a great time.  NYE was a little early; everyone said they were tired, so we had a toast at 10, and everyone was in bed by 11.  It was wonderful to wake up to sunshine and step out to heat.

There is a lot happening this year:  graduations and my volunteer work with NOW, learning how to lobby in Richmond.  I am nervous and excited.  I’d like to do a little traveling and maybe do some more research into the family geneology.  Maybe I can kick my carb habit and make sure I move an hour an day!

Till next time!


It’s Autumn again!

Sunday, October 4, 2015

It was an extremely busy summer!  Victoria decided not to work or take summer classes, so she spent most of the summer at home.  Since she is graduating next May, it is probably her last summer to laze by the pool.  In March, friends asked us to use our back yard for their wedding venue.  Of course, we said YES.  It was good that we had a deadline of September 12th to get a lot of work done in the yard.  It was a very nice wedding, and everyone had a good time, until the State Police showed up at 9:30…DJ speakers were too loud for the neighbors.  Oh, and someone started mowing his lawn during the ceremony.  Nice neighbors…  Vic took me to California for my 50th birthday.  We were gone almost a week and started in LA.  We walked around and went to Sur for dinner.  The weather was perfect, and we looked at neighborhoods for a possible move (for our kids next summer).  Then we drove to Napa and stayed at a really old bed and breakfast.  The house made noises during the night, which gave us the giggles!  We went to a wine festival and listened to lots of music.  Great time.  Then we spent a day in San Francisco, walking ten miles and drinking martinis!  There are lots of details that I may write about in the future, while I’m daydreaming during the upcoming cold weather.

Last night, the girls and I went to the Verizon Center to see Stevie Wonder in concert!  Four hours!  Love Songs in the Key of Life.  It was good to get out; I’ve been inside my house a lot lately.  We’ve had lots of rain, and the start of flu season has begun.  As a matter of fact, I had to rush to Charlottesville to take Victoria to the ER the other day.  She had a rare form of strep throat along with a massive migraine.  They gave her four medications in an IV and a massive shot of Penicillin.  Now, she’s catching up on missed work.

This week, there was another school shooting. Oh, how I wish something could be done to prevent this from happening again.

Till next time!

It’s Almost Spring!

Last week, Victoria and I spent her spring break in Florida.  It was so nice to get away from the cold for a few days.

When I left Stafford, I drove on snow covered roads for 2 1/2 hours to get to Charlottesville.  Once we got on highway 64, heading toward Richmond, the roads were wet, but not snow covered.  Once we got on I95 in Richmond, there was no more snow to deal with!

We got to Ft. Myers around midnight and spent a whirlwind 36 hours visiting family. We also visited a butterfly sanctuary and tried to spot manatees.  Then, we spent Saturday evening bar hopping at the beach. Fun times.  Sunday, after breakfast at Heavenly Biscuit (the best!), we drove to Miami.  Three hours later, we were in our hotel on Miami Beach!

Sun, sun, sun.  The temperature never rose above 85 degrees.  Besides reading and sunbathing on the Atlantic shores, we spent nearly every evening in South Beach.  Amazing area to eat and shop and eat some more!  The sales people were a little annoying, but it was a great time.  I love how they cram every bit of space with tables, chairs, and even couches.  The hotel was decent, and they had the best beach bar.  Food and drinks were great.  Plus, just sitting at a table watching the ocean is such a treat.

The drive home seemed to take for-ev-er.  We stopped around midnight in north NC.  I finally made it home around 2:30 Friday evening. March 13th. I didn’t want vacation to end, so my boys and I had dinner at El Gran Charro that night.

I’ve been having Jonathan drive more, now that winter seems to be over.  I still haven’t taken him on I95.  He’ll just have to drive Route 1 for the time being.

This is a time for doctor appointments for everyone.  Plus, it’s almost Easter, which means I need to come up with activities for spring break.  March Madness begins!

Winter Blues

So, it is January 24, 2015.  It is a cold, rainy day.  The forecast called for snow, which it did, for a while yesterday.  The house is rockin’; our son’s friends are here, in the basement, yelling, laughing, and yes, singing.  Vic is flipping channels between golf and movies.  It’s 5:30 now, and Vic has bought the boys pizza.  I am low carbing it for a while, so pizza is a mistake!  I went to the gym this morning and split the hour between the walk/jog/run machine and the recumbent bike.  I finally have about 800 songs on my ipod.  I must look a sight, rocking out to certain songs!

Our neighbor, Kirby, received last week, his original birth certificate.  He asked me to check on my ancestry account if there is any information about brothers and sisters.  So, I’ve spent some time each day, and today hit the jackpot!  I have most of the 15 names!  I hope he gets to meet some of them.

Sarah is due May 12th, and I’ve probably bought about 50 outfits already for baby boy Wolfe.

I deleted my facebook account, and I’m thrilled.  It was nice to catch up with old friends for the past seven years, but it has become a time gobbler.  On to other endeavors!

We haven’t heard from Winston in two weeks.  I hope everything is going well for him.  Kennedy turned four on the 13th.

I saw Victoria last Sunday. She says that she loves her classes this semester.  She chooses interesting classes, like autobiography writing and philosophy, along with the tough economics classes.  She looks great, too.  She’s counting those days till graduation!

My sisters and I are going to Tybee Island for a few days this spring.  I hope it’s a good time; we haven’t done a getaway ever!  Rosie chose the place, I chose the dates, and Monika picked the rental.  Don’t know for sure if Barbara will make it.

I bought ranunculus bulbs to grow indoors next month.  I am hoping to start all my patio flowers from seed.  The Memorial Day weekend picnic will be here before we know it.  The official introduction of baby boy Wolfe to our family and friends.

That’s it, for now.

Happy New Year 2015

Hello, world.  2014 was an interesting year, but I am hoping 2015 is interesting AND wonderful.

The past year was probably a little busier than previous years.  The highs were great!  I got to travel a little.  In February, I had a trip to Ft. Myers to visit my Mom, sister, and niece for a long weekend.  We spent a Saturday night with a fortune teller.  We laughed and laughed, and we got in trouble for being too loud!  The readings were so very interesting, and some of what she predicted came true.  I am still waiting to find that business partner she assured me I’d meet.  Of course, she said her readings come true in 2–days, months, or years.  Then, in March, I went to Nashville to visit 2 more sisters, 2 nephews, a niece, and a childhood friend.  It was a great time.  Right after, Victoria and I headed to Los Angeles for her college spring break.  It was beyond great!  It was so great that it is on both of our wish lists to either visit again or move to.  Then, in June, we moved Victoria into her first apartment in C’ville.  It’s over 1000 sq ft, and the front door has a key code.  We only set off the alarm a few times!  Jonathan started his junior year at NSHS, and he had (and passed) behind the wheel driver training.  By April, he will be able to drive himself!  In the spring, he hooked up with a group of League of Legends friends from school, and they hang out pretty much at some point of every weekend.  Mostly they meet at our house, which is great, because there’s lots of noise in the house again.  They are great kids.  We feed them…  Sarah discovered she is pregnant!  As of Christmas, we know she is having a boy!  Due date is May 12th.  She’s so happy!  Winston and his family moved around a little this year, but they have just landed back in NOVA, so we will see the grandchildren again!

What do I want this year?  As always, I want everyone in my family to be healthy and happy.  Life is too short, and it’s full of surprises, so it’s time to take care of my health.  I got a fitbit for Christmas, so it’s all ready to go.  Accountability is what I need.  So far, trips this year will be Ft. Myers and Nashville again, and Victoria and I will probably go to Miami for spring break.  I am trying to plan a spring break trip with Jon, as well.  Plus it’s my 50th!!! Ah!  Vic has told me that he and I are spending it on a wine tour of Napa.  Can’t wait! I’m also going to try and get some high school friends together in summer to celebrate a collective 50th birthday.  Must get planning!

Make it a great year, everyone!

It’s getting cold outside.

Today is Monday, October 20, 2014.  My son has a bit of a fever and stomach issues, so he is asleep on the couch.  I’m trying to busy myself with quiet activities.

It’s been a pretty good couple of weeks.  I do not like that the weather is getting colder, though.  I DISLIKE having to make sure jackets are always available.  Even buying a new one hasn’t made me look forward to winter.  There are two more very busy weeks ahead, because band competition season doesn’t end until November 4th.

On Saturday, I sent a package filled with clothes and a Halloween book for Michael and Kennedy in Ohio.  I hope they like it all. I IMed Winston on Thursday to get an address.  He didn’t have much news; he still hasn’t found a job, and they are still living at his sister in law’s house.  I hope something works out soon! They have been living with Cary’s family for 15 months!

The girls were both home last weekend!  It was a great visit.  We played Risk, which is a new game for me.  The others are so serious about there game play!  I think this might be a family favorite.  We also went to Spotsylvania Towne Center and walked the mall.  We introduced Sarah to Teavana.  I think she liked it.  Victoria finally got new glasses, and we had lunch at Logan’s Roadhouse.  The waiter joined our conversation, uninvited!

Thanksgiving plans are underway.  We will be hosting at our house.  Sarah is inviting her in laws, and Margaret and Kirby will be here, as well.  It’s 5 weeks away!!  I started looking at recipes and bought a Victoria magazine that has great ideas.

While I was trolling facebook late last week, I discovered a high school friend of my sisters is an author!  Lance and his sister, Robin, worked with both Barbara and Rosie at the Center Theater in Searstown.  Their father was a biology teacher and had a column in our local paper about birds.  He started Outdoor School on a piece of land that had a bog.  All sixth graders would go for a week.  The week I went in the fall of 1976, it was the coldest week any group had ever spent there!  It is where I was taught to shoot a rifle.  There is no way that would ever be included in camp today!  I ordered his novels from Amazon, and I’m going to send them to my sisters for Christmas.  If I can get up to Cumberland, I’ll try to get Lance to sign them.

Mom is fighting an infection again, and she has lost 8 pounds.  I think they are only giving her iv fluids.  But, she made it to her 85th birthday!  Rosie bought her a strawberry milkshake.  This past weekend is always when I would drive home with a special fruity cake.  The fall leaves would be spectacular!  I think I will take a drive in the country this week, with camera in tow.

In Charlottesville this weekend, they found the remains of a body.  Everyone is thinking it’s the missing girl.  Either way, it’s very, very sad.  My life would be over if I ever got that kind of news. Also, a teacher I used to work with died on Saturday morning.  No one will give any details, so I’m wondering if she took her life.  She was not very friendly with me, but I’m sad that her two boys have lost their mother.

Till next time!  Cheers!

October 6, 2014

It was a Monday…actually it was an okay Monday.  I’m writing this as dinner is cooking.  Chops on the grill, salad, and some leftover cole slaw from yesterday.

It was an interesting week.  The weather has been pretty comfortable, but I’ve gotten our fleece out to wear in the mornings.  It rained a little, but not enough to complain (or break out my rain boots!).  I’ve started raking leaves a little every day.  We mostly have acorns on our deck.  I’ve been sewing and knitting to my heart’s content.  Will anyone want them?  My next project is socks.  SOMEONE is getting a pair of socks after I figure out how to use those double pointed needles!  Martha Stewart can do it; so can I!

Vic and I went to the golf club on Friday to listen to a musician.  It was a very nice evening, even though their happy hour food wasn’t the best.  The young man singing was pretty good, and Vic and I played trivial pursuit on the phone.  Of course, I couldn’t drink a lot, because I was driving and needed to pick up Jonathan after the high school football game.  Funny, after he got in the car I asked him if he was hungry and if he wanted to stop at McD’s by the school.  He didn’t want it!  He wanted whatever we made at home!  Well, I had to disappoint him…we ate at the club.  He had band competition Saturday, and Vic met Dee, Ron, and Mike at the Nationals playoff game. So, I had the day and evening to myself!  I wasn’t in the mood to drive around, so I hung out and took a nap before grocery shopping for Sunday.  On Sunday, I made lasagna for Jon and his friends and crock pot pork for Vic and me. MMMMMM…love cold weather comfort food.

Today I had an eye exam at Spotsylvania Towne Center.  I can’t remember the last time I walked that mall.  It was nice!  I purchased Vic a new pair of black shoes at Belk, and I ordered new glasses at Costco.  He balked at the price…

I discovered that our library has magazines that I can read from my tablet.  Yay! I could choose a different one every day of the month.  Don’t know that I’ll ever read the hunting magazines, though.

I’m excited that Victoria is coming home for her fall break on Thursday.  Sarah is taking Friday off, and I think the three of us will shop and eat all day.  I know Tori’s classes are difficult this semester, and I don’t know how to help her with the stress.  This is the exact time in my life at college that I took a semester off.  I never would have gone back if my Godmother didn’t give me money and told me it was for a semester at school.  I can hear my sister, Monika, saying “No one can take your education away.”

Speaking of Monika, it is her 60th birthday in early January.  I texted family to see if we can pull off a surprise for her.  We’re all in!  Now, for the planning process to begin.

So, the new television season has begun, and I’ve not been in the mood to sit and watch anything in particular.  I guess as the temperature drops, so will my willingness to be a couch potato.  There are several movies I’d like to see, though.  Gone Girl tops the list.

It’s Autumn!

Today is Friday, September 26, 2014.  It is the last weekend in September, and fall began earlier this week.  The month has gone quickly by, as I’ve noticed EVERY month seems to go quickly by.  This makes me nervous.  The temperature has been extremely pleasant, and I even wore a sweatshirt one morning this week.  We have not yet closed the pool, but I don’t anticipate the temperature getting hot enough to enjoy a few laps.  I guess I’m trading my swimsuit for a tea cup!

The family is doing well–Vic has been golfing a lot, and Jonathan just got the first set of interim reports.  Band competition season is in full swing, with our invitational tomorrow!  Vic and I went to two home games (both wins), but we missed last Friday because I got the flu, and Vic’s back was hurting.  He slept two nights sitting up…  Oh, and we are now owners of a hybrid!

We have been trying to touch base with Victoria at some point every day.  She says it’s frightening not knowing what happened to the missing student.  Police have arrested a man, but they are clueless about the girl’s whereabouts. She actually remembers the accused man being at her restaurant during poker night.  Creepy!

Vic got news about a work friend; he has stage 4 melanoma.  I guess we are getting to be of an age where it’s not just parents who die, but friends, as well.

I’ve been spending a monstrous amount of time sewing and knitting.  I decided about a month ago that I cannot buy any more craft supplies until I use everything I already have in the house!  Maybe I’ll blog about all my projects.  I made a dance bag for a friend’s daughter’s third birthday.  It turned out really cute!  I also made pillows, several hand bags, grocery bags, wine bags, and a shirt.  I got brave and sent a polka dot bag to my sister for her birthday!  I’m working on a skirt for Victoria, and then I’m going to make a cape for Monika’s dog, Elvis–blue, of course!  I found a ball for Vic and me to attend, called the Witch’s Masquerade, at the end of October.  It’s to benefit a diabetes charity.  I hope we can go!  I’ll have to make my costume!!!

I’m also supposed to see both Erin and Lesa this month.  Looking forward to it!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Today, I am fighting a cold.  I shouldn’t be surprised, because Jonathan stayed home from school yesterday with low grade fever, sore throat, and runny nose.  It takes a lot to bring him down, and he slept for more than 24 hours.  He’s back to school today, though!

I have been working on myself lately, mostly trying to eat more healthfully and move more.  I’ve also been working on the mental portion, as well, but it’s difficult when there is so much going on in your family’s lives.  Sarah and I surprised Victoria on Saturday at her waitressing job in Charlottesville.  We really surprised her!  It was good, good, good to have our threesome together for a little while.  Both girls are strong and stubborn.  On Monday afternoon, there was a news report that a UVA student is missing.  This is particularly frightening for me, because she was last seen right where Victoria lives and works.  What is a mother to do except remind our daughters to never go out alone. I’ve been trying not to obsess about looking for updated information.

I have promised myself to get a part time job as soon as Jonathan can drive himself.  I truly believe this will give me something else to focus my energies on.  Plus, I’d really love to contribute to family conversations that always involve their jobs.  Even my oldest sister just got a part time job!  She will be great at it!

Rosie’s birthday was Monday.  Dad’s (and Gerard’s) are on Friday. The holidays are approaching quickly!  And, I’m not looking forward to cold weather.  The high school games have been great–3-0 so far.  I’m 1-1 in the family fantasy league (drafting two domestic abusers was a huge mistake!).

I’ll be spending the next couple of days decluttering, focusing on the over abundance of men’s clothing in this house!  Wish me luck!  I think I married the only male clothing hoarder in the world!

Just Another Birthday

Yesterday, I turned 49 years old.  I decided a few months ago that from 49 to 50 I would work really hard on bettering myself–healthier lifestyle, more exercise, etc.  I already volunteer, so that’s covered (in my improved lifestyle).  I realized yesterday that there is one thing that I can’t quite figure out–why don’t I have any friends?  I mean, I know why.  I don’t work, so it’s difficult to find someone to go to lunch with.  Plus, most women I know still have young families to care for.  It was this realization that if my husband had tried to get people together, he’d have some trouble finding them!  Traffic is horrible in our area, particularly on holiday weekends, so leaving our neighborhood isn’t an option.  You have to really, really want to need to get somewhere!

Okay, so I sound like a whiny baby.  It was a sad, lonely birthday.  To be fair, our family birthdays are always pretty quiet.  We don’t go overboard with presents, if we get them at all.  It’s just easier that way–less stress.  However, the day was so quiet, I was overcome with melancholy.  I got my birthday dinner (sort of), but I sat alone at our outdoor table.  Then, I fought with my husband.  He didn’t know what hit him!  End result–because I was mad at him, and I almost never get mad at him, he felt it was also okay to air his complaints about me.  Happy Birthday, indeed!  Well, we are talkers, so we talked it through, plus our neighbors came over after 8 for a drink.  The day wasn’t a total bust.

So, I guess I can add to the year’s goal–somehow, some way, find some friends who actually WANT to go out for coffee or a drink.  I’ve always said that you should never make your kids your best friends, because they have their own lives to live, but wouldn’t it be nice ONE DAY if even they wanted to just sit with you on your special day, even for an hour?

Today, we are having our very first family fantasy football draft.  I better get ready.  Got to kick some butt!