Monday, March 30, 2015

Our Weekend

The girls and I had a really, really mellow weekend.

And we needed it.

Gordy and Henry spent the weekend in New Hampshire where Henry and his hockey team were playing (and winning!) the Northeast Region Championship.  That victory will be the subject of my next post (I forgot to get the photos from Gordy), I promise.

Henry and Gordy left Friday afternoon for the tournament, so we had a three-day girls weekend.

Georgia had soccer practice on Friday evening and a game on Sunday, but we had a sports-free day on Saturday and we took advantage of the situation to relax and lounge around the house.

We also took Pippa Middleton for a long walk around a local lake - but it wasn't the most pleasant experience since it was snowing throughout the trip 
(and throughout the entire day) and no one really enjoyed themselves.  


This has become unacceptable.

We took the walk because we wanted to tire Pippa Middleton out before we left her in the afternoon so that we could attend a performance of "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" at our local middle school.  Georgia's good friend, Danielle, played one of the Pott children and we were excited to see her act, sing and dance.

On Sunday, the girls and I spent the morning doing a massive (and much-needed) straightening up.  I can't call what we did a Spring Clean since there was no real cleaning involved.  We didn't vacuum, dust or scrub, but we did spend about three hours putting random things away in their proper home, cleaning up the toy cupboard in the basement, organizing closets and folding laundry and now our house looks fantastic.

Our last weekend task was to get Georgia to her soccer game (an hour away) by 5:30.  It wasn't snowing, but it was freezing and the biting cold wind made it a long, long game to watch.

Warm weather had better arrive in New England quickly, that's all I can say.

Throughout our weekend, we were receiving updates about the Bantam As and their myriad victories.  They won Friday, they won Saturday morning, they won Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning and finally they won the big game on Sunday afternoon, claiming the trophy for their own.

Very exciting!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Our Florida Trip (part two)

When I left off yesterday, I was thinking that I had more stories to tell and more pictures to post, but today I'm realizing that I really don't.  I can post a few photo-op snaps taken before our one "dressy" dinner.  I didn't get one of all four of us, sadly.  There's Avery and Henry above and me with the tiny children below.

And Meredith and Avery, all gussied up:

and then the ladies:

We watched a spectacular beach sunset one of the nights - we walked into the town of Captiva for dinner all but one night.  The town restaurants were better than the resort options.  

We also went on a dolphin cruise which was fantastic live but not so much in photos.  The best shots I got looked exactly like this one:

The dolphins did get closer to the boat, I just didn't get any photographic evidence of it.  I did get a cute shot of one of many mother ospreys that we saw on the trip.  This one had a baby osprey that kept sticking it's little head up so it could watch us pass.

On the last day of our trip, Meredith and Avery had to begin the long drive home, so they dropped Henry and I off in Tampa where we went to the Florida Aquarium and attempted to get gear from the Tampa Bay Lightening arena which was sadly closed.  

It was a great trip.  The day time temperature never dipped below 82 degrees and there was never a cloud in the sky.  I really, really needed warmth and sun after this ridiculous winter.  The freezing cold, 23 degree temperature that we returned to was a shock, that's for sure.  Gordy and I are starting to wonder what on earth we were thinking when we moved to Massachusetts 16 years ago.  We were moving from Chicago where the weather frequently dipped to below-zero, so I guess we thought New England would be an improvement. That joke was on us!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Our Trip To Florida (part one)

Our trip to Florida, as you can all believe, was fabulous.  The days were sunny and warm, I never needed a down parka or a pair of ugg boots and my body soaked in as much vitamin D as it could manage.

We arrived on Thursday.   Meredith and Avery picked us up at the airport and we drove down to Captiva, oohing and ahhing the entire drive whenever we caught a glimpse of the ocean.  Henry and I haven't seen any outdoor color except white and gray in three months, so we were pretty amazed at the tropical scenery and all the vibrant colors.

It didn't take us long to change out of our Massachusetts clothes.

We worked hard to take advantage of the sun:  we went to the beach and the pool daily, we enjoyed fruity drinks on the pool deck while watching dolphins play just feet from our chairs.

Henry went down the water slides:

... and we communed with the pelicans:

We also took a dolphin cruise, but I'll show you photos of that tomorrow.  

We had a great time and I felt guilty that Gordy and the girls missed out on getting some warmth, too and that it snowed in Pennsylvania while we were gone.  We need to plan a huge family vacation some day.  

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Birthday Presents, Art Projects and Oh Yea! I'm Going To Florida!

Josie brought home the best art project yesterday.  She and a friend made "pastries" and a pastry stand in art class.   Above are the cannolies and below is a bon bon.

There was also some sort of fancy bar cookie...

and muffins with muffin cups:

Here is the entire tray:

Josie's hockey ended last week (hooray!) so she's had more time to work on some of the presents that she received for her birthday.  She's been making paper using a kit that her Granny and Grandfather gave her:

and she and Georgia made cake pops using a kit she got from Lois and Harvey:

I didn't have any of these pops, but I've heard they were fabulous.  Henry said they were incredible which is the highest praise I can think of.

This is a short week for me since Henry and I are leaving for our trip to Florida with Meredith and Avery tomorrow.  It's been cold and rainy here in Massachusetts and I'm really looking forward to sitting in the warm Floridian sunshine.  I'll try to post photos of our trip on Instagram but I will also write a post when we get back.

Have a great rest of the week!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Spring Soccer Begins

Right on the heels of the hockey State Tournaments, the soccer tournaments begin.  Georgia had her first "Pre-Season Tournament" this weekend.  I brought her to the first game on Friday night.  The sun was out but it was cold and there enormous piles of snow around each plowed field.

It seemed odd to be playing outdoor soccer when it's still so obviously winter here in Massachusetts.

The girls won the first game 2-0.

Gordy brought Georgia to the second game on Saturday evening.

The weather was more miserable - it was freezing cold and pouring rain and if it had been up to non-sporty me, the game would have been cancelled.  

(It is not up to me.)

The girls lost this game 0-2, but according to Gordy, they played well and it wasn't as much of a one-sided game as the score suggests.

And so the last game is today.  Gordy and I are both going and so is Josie.  It's really cold and it might snow - perfect conditions for a soccer game, no?

And so "spring" in New England begins.  I'm getting out my under armour layer, bringing blankets and hoping for the best.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

I'm Now A Shopkeeper: My New Etsy Shop

Last fall, I took a sewing class in Arlington.  It was my goal to learn to make a well-crafted pillow cover that I could eventually sell on Etsy.  

I did learn to make pillow covers, but what with hosting Christmas, surviving all the snow storms and taking care of the new puppy, I haven't had as much time to sew and create pillow inventory as I would like.  I plan to change that this spring and summer. 

I have a ton of ideas for pillows that I want to create.  Having decorated our Block Island house mostly through Etsy and other on-line decorating websites, I feel I have a good idea about what the market still needs.  I just need to carve out the the time to create.

In the mean time, I've opened an Etsy shop and I'm selling some of my photographs.  

I've named the shop 4 Feet and A Mouth Studios - since that's Pippa Middleton's favorite game and we all thought a pug theme would be appropriate.

The shop has only been open for a couple of weeks and over the weekend, I made my first sale!  I'm hoping to ship out that order tomorrow, which is really exciting.

Please feel free to check out my shop (frequently!).  The more traffic my shop generates, the higher up my items will climb in the searches.

So far, I have three photographs listed, but I plan to continually add more items.   I've included the giraffe print that I made for Georgia's room:

I took the photo during our vacation to Disney World a few years ago and Henry helped me photoshop the background.  He and I are going to split the profits from the sale of this print.

I've also listed one of my favorite Block Island photographs:

I took this photo during our annual Block Island vacation a couple of years ago and I find myself staring at it constantly during the winter months.  It's very soothing, no?  I think it would look beautiful framed and hanging on a wall.  I can custom print up to 20x30 inches, but each print comes in multiple sizes.

Please stop by my ETSY SHOP.

If you have an etsy account, feel free to like my items and add my shop to your favorites.

And if you are interested in purchasing a print (or two or three), that would be wonderful, too.

Thank you!

Monday, March 9, 2015

The Results!

So Henry's team won the States!  

And Josie's team did not.

Josie's team didn't even make it to the semi-finals which is sad, but also rather happy since the semi-final game was to be played at 6am on Sunday morning (day light savings time) and we would have had to leave our home at 4:30am in order to get there in time.

Henry's game was extremely exciting so I didn't take photos until the very end.  I wanted to watch the game.  

The final score was 2-1, although I would say that Henry's team dominated the game and the score probably should have been higher.  The other team had a great goalie and he played his heart out.

This is Henry's second State win of his career but for most of the boys on the team, it's their third win.  This team (Bantam As) won the States last year as well, while Henry was on the Bantam Bs.

In the photos, Henry is the kid in black with the red helmet.

Here the boys are saying "Good Game" to the opposing side:

And here is Henry saying "good game" again after having received his medal.

The team will get another banner at our home ice rink which is a lot of fun.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

It's State Tournament Time

This weekend is a busy one for us.  It's State Tournament time for Henry and Josie.  Henry's team lucked out with rink assignments and all his games will be played about 15 minutes away from our house.

Josie's team did not luck out - her games will be played about 45 minutes away from our house and at very early hours of the morning.  Yeah!  

Both teams have a good shot at winning their tournament - although Henry's team is more likely to do so than Josie's.  I'll probably have Gordy write a guest post to give you all the details when it's all over.

I will have over-dosed on hockey by Sunday afternoon, but (at least for Josie) hockey will be over by Sunday evening.  We will just have to get through try-outs for next year's team and then we'll be saying good-bye to cold hockey rinks for a few months.


Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Josie Turns 10

Josie is now (proudly) double-digits.

She's been counting down the days until her birthday for about a month.  Turning 10, she told me, feels more exciting than turning any other year (thus far).

I noticed the difference myself when I went shopping for Josie's birthday presents.  She wanted a new spring jacket and an infinity scarf.  She had two pairs of shoes on her wish list and some jewelry.  

Gone were the pages and pages of pink plastic items, dolls and toys with thousands of tiny pieces.

All the presents seemed to have a pre-teen / teenager vibe.  

I did buy her two toys:  one was Doh Vinci (an older playdoh) and a marble/maze game that you can play by yourself. 

Her big present won't come until later this spring/early summer:  she is getting her ears pierced but only after soccer season is over.

That evening, we celebrated her birth with a lovely bakery cake and a take-out dinner from a local Italian restaurant.

Which was an early birthday present for me, obviously!

Happy Birthday, Josie!

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