28 August 2009

Marathon Summer

Hey there - remember me? The one who USED to blog with regularity and then dropped completely off the radar? I'm BACK!

Talk about a marathon - I may not have physically RUN 26 miles (or whatever an actual marathon is) but I feel like I have this summer. Beginning with Lleyton's 2nd birthday party, the summer flew by. Some random (and I mean RANDOM) thoughts and summer highlights:

  • Hottest summer I can remember - in both DFW area and Katy. When a day was cooler than 100F, it actually felt good. I've never seen so many days with 100+ temps and I have the four digit July electric bill to prove it
  • Jennifer is pregnant with baby #3 and was sick as a dog for the first trimester which was bad for her but fun for ME as she, Ben and Luke practically lived with me in Katy for about a month of that time
  • Lleyton had his 2nd birthday (Cars, Trucks and Things That Go Party) in Pflugerville. And I got to make the cake!
  • Ben learned to swim - in my pool...sniff...I'm so proud!
  • Luke had his 2nd birthday (Cow Party - that's P-A-R-T-Y, not pattie, for all you smart alecks) in Keller. I got to make the cake - again!
  • Mirai had her 2nd birthday (Silly Monkey Party) in Keller at our vacation place. I got to make the cake(s) - cupcake tree and a layered cake with her own personal monkey!
  • Bounce Houses are great investments for grandparents. Well worth the money!
  • Carpeted stairs are better to fall down then wooden stairs if you are 2 years old - or any age for THAT matter (just ask Lleyton...and for the record, it was the CARPETED ones he took a dive on, not the wooden ones, probably saving a trip to the ER and possibly his life...shudder, shudder...)
  • All gallbladder surgeries are not created equal. Just ask Megan.
  • Two surgeries under general anesthetic within a week of each other are not a picnic. Again, just ask Megan.
  • Relatives with gardening expertise are much better than hiring total strangers. Our garden(s) - both of them - ROCK! (Thanks, Jason!)
  • Having two boys spend the night while their folks celebrate their anniversary isn't anymore work than having just one.
  • I never thought I'd have three, yes, THREE dogs. Sigh...
  • Mike can add NYC and D.C. to his repertoire of travel destinations besides his usual Kazakhstan. Discover America!
  • Working with UPS to redeliver an important package that then becomes lost was torture. They totally let me down. On my black list for now.
  • Icemakers that aren't cleaned every six months will land you a very expensive repair bill.
  • Wedding Anniversary #33 is the "Disneyland" anniversary. Hallmark begs to differ.
  • Fort Worth has a zoo worthy of obtaining an annual membership. I need to get one - Jen has one for her family. I think I've visited 3 or 4 times in the past 12 months.
  • Expatriate relationships last a LONG time! Reunion with three families from our Stavanger, Norway days this summer was fantastic - thanks ANN!
  • Neighborhood wading pools are fab if you have young grandchildren - 18" depth was perfect! And the pizza place delivers to the POOL!
  • Watching the Astros from the Diamond Club area is superfantabulously wonderful! Taking guests to enjoy it with you even more so.
  • Houston has a children's museum that is really cool - especially their Kidtropolis (new this year). Just hard to go in summer when every single (it seemed) daycare center was also visiting.
  • woot.com launched their site for kids at kids.woot.com - check it OUT!
  • Anyone needing any decomposed granite can get it FREE off my driveway in Katy. Still there. Still waiting to get a nasty letter from the HOA giving us 10 days to get rid of it. Don't know HOW to "get rid" of decomposed granite - can't put it in the trash, can't put it in the garden beds, sheesh - any ideas?? Friends took some of it; I swear the stuff grows at night.
  • Sweet potato vine is the best accessory for your garden - it's a great filler, literally, and adds a great dimension of color since it's lighter green against darker greens and seasonal color. Like the tacky bracelet described in "Bridget Jones' Diary" - "it's what I'd call an all-rounder - goes with anything, anywhere..."
  • If you're still reading this, you deserve a prize.
Well, that's it for today...the Reader's Digest version of my summer sans the Letters to the Editor or the "Life in Uniform" jokes. I will post photos from our recent Disney vacation soon - I've got to edit them a bit and pare them down to a dozen or so from the (large number) I actually took.

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