Sunday, August 28, 2011

We All Scream for Ice Cream

Tonight we stopped by Da-Da's Ice Cream, thinking we would just enjoy a quick cone.

However, I was thrilled that my phone has a pretty good camera . . . because, upon turning into the parking lot, this is what we saw:

I was fascinated when I just thought "Miss Casey" was sitting in a chair . . . but her pink bejeweled sunglasses took it over the top!

Then, she actually ate her own bowl of ice cream--atop the table--sitting in said chair.  And, when she was finished, she hopped down from her perch, picked up her own leash in her teeth, and walked to the car.


According to her owners, she's on about 4,000 cellphone cameras.  Mine is included.

Then, the delightful owner of Da-Da's offered Jax his own "baby cone" of vanilla yogurt.  As I'm sure you already figured, he was much obliged.  It was special for Mommy and Daddy to see as well, because after he is casted for his scoliosis, he won't be able to enjoy ice cream in this way anymore--too messy.  So, naturally, we let him go all out!

Dogs?  Check!
Babies?  Check!
Clearly, we all scream for ice cream!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Pure Imagination

Tonight was "one for the books," and that's just my opinion.  I can only imagine what Jackson thought of his first trip to a real fairground.

Today marked the first official day of the Shenandoah County Fair in Woodstock, Virginia . . . and, unsure whether or not we'd find another livestock exhibition, we decided to patronize.  I'm so glad we did.  Actually--and I hope you're sitting down--this may have trumped the Salem Fair for me.

After grabbing a quick "fair food" dinner of burgers and fries, we embarked on what quickly became one of the most memorable nights we've had since moving west of Washington DC.

Jackson took his very first pony ride as we held our breath.  We knew full well this event would be either a bang or a bust.

And it was a bang.

From beginning to end.

And as part of the animal encounter, there was also a free petting zoo that we thoroughly enjoyed.  Although I didn't get a picture, my favorite animal was a bird that mocked people.  I started giggling over him saying "hello" -- then, he cackled insultingly at me, using my intonation.  Oh, how I would love to have him around when I'm aggravated at some telemarketer or rude customer service agent.  Just a thought!

Then, as we approached the Midway, mom was drawn to the kettle corn--Justin to the BBQ--and I to the pork rinds.  Funny thing--Jackson fancied all three--especially the pork rinds.

And, what's a good fairground without a baby covered in blue lollipop?

As I said before . . . I can only imagine what Jax thought of our evening at the fair!
(note to any critical-granola-fun suckers out there: this is a rarity, and there's nothing wrong with a small dose of junk food every now and again!  Thank. You. Very. Much)

Full belly and all, Jackson rode his very first carnival ride tonight as well.  I believe it was called the "Dizzy Dragons."  Like the pony ride, the petting zoo, and the food--it, too, was a big hit.

Soon, it was dusk--and the evening only got more beautiful . . .

as the sun set and the carnival lights cast their electric glow against the darkness.

This may sound kind of strange--but ever since I was a little girl, the sensory experience of a carnival has always been one of my very favorites.

Close you eyes.

Think about it: the neon lights flickering against the night sky--the sound of children laughing and thrill seekers screaming--the woosh of air as dizzying rides swirl and drop all around you--the smell of sausages, funnel cakes, popcorn, and cotton candy (and, the occasionally unavoidable: vomit)--and the taste of just about anything you can dream up in your wildest imagination.

"Come with me and you'll be, in a world of pure imagination . . . living there you'll be free, if you truly wish to be"
~Willy Wonka

There is precious little time left in the "dog days" of 2011 . . . may you all take a moment to pause and find a place like this to awaken that pure imagination in yourself.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mama's Got a Brand New Do

For a huge part of my life, I've had really long hair.

Then, several months ago . . . I chopped it all off.  Honestly, I didn't really regret it . . . until recently, that is.  You see, my hair got to that "really awkward" stage--the not long and simple--but not short and styled either stage.  For weeks I've been looking in the mirror and chanting "I hate my hair!  I just despise it!"  And admittedly, I have been just scrunching it with mousse for weeks.  Every.  Single.  Day.  As a busy mommy, it has been so much easier and faster to not fuss with my hair in the mornings.  

But, as I told my hair stylist today:
"I've been telling myself 'why bother even doing my hair'--then, the worse my hair looked, I started thinking 'why even put on any makeup'--and that's a slippery slope to becoming a real bum."

I literally said that.

She laughed, and assured me that she would "un-bum" me.

And she did.
And I love it!
And I need you to keep me accountable to going to the salon every 6-8 weeks to maintain the style.

Goodbye, mousse!
(I'm aiming to actually touch my blow dryer 5 out of the 7 days a week)
(I know, dream big)

A final word to the wise:
Just because you're a mum, doesn't mean you have to be a bum.

Rupert's 23!

It's that special time of year again . . .
Happy Birthday, Rupert!

Now that you're 23, our age gap has once again closed to "2 years" which makes me very happy.  Remember, there's nothing wrong with an older woman.


Happy Birthday to the world's best, most talented, most versatile, most unique, and hands-down best looking ginger.

Love you, Rupe!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Spread the Word

Believe it or not, I actually just discovered this uplifting video about Infantile Scoliosis starring Dr. Min Mehta herself.  It is really the third in a series of three, but it stands alone rather well.  I thought it was, perhaps, the best of the three to show those curious about the condition with limited time.  It's less than 10 minutes--please watch!  THAT MEANS YOU--especially if you are in any way connected with the medical community.  Spread the word about the curative miracle of EARLY TREATMENT!


Here I sit at my computer blogging.

Not that I don't want to talk to my blogging audience, but I'd really rather be able to use my cellphone right about now.

No cake.

Apparently, that's the story for most everyone around here as "cellular phone towers are overwhelmed on the East coast."  Because ...

We just had a 5.9 magnitude earthquake!

Talk about a freaky afternoon.  About 60 minutes ago, I put Jackson down for a nap and very shortly after he fell asleep, I logged onto Etsy in our office to browse.

Then ... I thought--for sure--that I was going crazy.

It started as a little rumble under my feet (felt like our washing machine was unbalanced) ... then it got more and more violent.  Within a few seconds, the bookshelves around me were rocking back and forth against the walls and Maggie started running around.  I walked out into our foyer, the house literally shaking all around me ... to find our chandelier swinging on its chain.  This lasted for about 20 seconds -- which, when you're questioning your sanity -- feels like an eternity.

Thus began the frantic phone calls, that, had they connected would have sounded something like this:  "Mom, I know you're going to think I'm crazy ... but I think my house is shaking" ... "I hope this isn't the beginning of another 'true story' like The Exorcist."

Only, they didn't connect.
Still haven't.

Luckily, my neighbor across the street was outside on her porch ... so, I reluctantly walked across into her yard ... and I said something along the lines of "this is going to sound really weird, but about 10 minutes ago, was your house shaking?"  Never was I so happy to hear the words "yeah, we just had an earthquake."

Thanks goodness someone was well informed!

From what I've been able to read online so far, this earthquake centered in Mineral, Virginia and was a 5.9 magnitude quake, categorized as "moderate/strong."  Experts are considering that what we felt was merely the "foreshock" and there may be more to come.


Hey, I'm just feeling strangely satisfied that it wasn't some figment of my imagination and/or some malevolent force.
Geesh, I watch too many movies!

Stay tuned.

Boys and Girls

"On the day I was born--The nurses all gathered 'round--And they gazed in wide wonder--At the joy they had found--The head nurse spoke up--Said 'leave this one alone'--She could tell right away--That I was BAD TO THE BONE!"

"I come home in the morning light--My mother says 'when you gonna live your life right'--Oh mother dear we're not the fortunate ones--And girls they want to have fun--Oh GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN!"

"I met him at the candy store--He turned around and smiled at me--You get the picture--Yes, we see--That's when I fell for the LEADER OF THE PACK!"

"Laughing and a' running--Skipping and a' jumping--In the misty morning fog with our hearts a' tumpin'--And you, my brown eyed girl--You, my BROWN EYED GIRL!"

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

This Kind of Busy

The last couple of days around here have been pleasantly busy . . . 
Nothing extraordinary--just plain fun.

Yesterday, we attended the Clarke County Fair.  It was quite a different experience from the Salem Fair where I grew up.  Sure, there were rides and cotton candy at this one--but there were also tons of unexpected (at least by me) livestock competitions as well as a demolition derby.

And, to top it off, my mom drove . . . and we forgot to transfer Jackson's "good stroller" into her car.  So, we arrived with this $10 (literally, and you get what you pay for) stroller.  Just picture us dragging this through the gravel and, at times, the muddy fields of Clarke County.  Basically, Jax was able to experience the demolition derby rumble without even so much as stepping on a gas pedal.  Nevertheless, he was a good sport about the whole ordeal.

And if you've ever attend the Salem Fair, you'll note that you usually never see this type of sign announcing an attraction.

In my opinion, this was the prettiest animal at the fair.  Isn't she beautiful?  Unfortunately, her exhibit was labeled "Poultry"-- I hope she's not "what's for dinner."

This was mom's favorite.

The very best part of our evening--and totally worth my $7 entrance fee--was that we were able to watch a chick hatch from its egg.


We walked over the the incubator just as she finished cracking the circumference of her egg with the tiny beak--then, within minutes, she unfurled her little self and plopped out of her egg.  Lately, I've been feeling a lot like "the bird whisperer."  Or, at very least, an inexperienced birdy-OBGYN.

But, it truly was incredible.

We really are in rural Virginia, now!

Yet . . .
we're still oh-so-close to the "big city" -- and NOVA.
Today, we went to Fair Oaks Mall to kill time after my dental appointment.  Jackson just loves to play in the children's area at this awesome mall.  I snapped a few photographs that I thought you might enjoy.  And, besides getting slapped in the face by a chubby kid, he had a blast!

And, the best part about today's adventures?  I ran into a dear, dear friend of mine from a past job--and received a much-overdue hug!  It was so great catching up with her.  And . . . we ended the busy day with dinner at a local Mexican restaurant with my friend Nathalie and her beautiful daughter, Aubree.

I don't mind being this kind of busy.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Three Years Ago

Three years ago today . . .

We celebrated with friends . . .

And saw each other in a new light . . .

Three years ago today . . .

We said our vows . . . 

And danced our dance . . .

Three years ago today . . . 

We set out on "the rest of our lives" together.

Happy Third Anniversary, Justin!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Comments Welcomed

So, I felt totally ridiculous sitting in the mall getting it applied, but . . .

I thought it would be a good "test run" before seriously considering the real thing.

I'm a 25 year-old mother with a Henna tattoo right now.

For some time now I've been considering getting a permanent tattoo right there on my foot, but I've been afraid of the lifelong commitment of getting ink'd.  So, on a complete whim, I got this Henna tattoo today.  Although any permanent tattoo design I would get would be nothing like this one, the approximate size would be the same.  The idea is that I'll have about three weeks to decide whether I hate or love it.

What do you think?
Leave your comments.