outdoor living space

I ordered furniture for the porch from Overstock.com. I was really surprised at how quickly it shipped! I ordered it Sunday last week and YBW told me it was in the driveway when he got home Friday afternoon!
I was one smiley Robynbird!
We put it together early Saturday morning. The sun was hot, but we were undaunted. Everything was wrapped in the teeniest bubble wrap I’ve ever seen. No matter how you touched it, it would pop. (I gotta admit that was kind of cool. I love bubble wrap!)
20150418_104900
The pile of cushions amused me so much more than it probably should have.
20150418_104851

Here is is all finished! We sat out here together Sunday morning, reading the Post. YBW with his coffee, me with my Diet DP. It was a bit breezy, we needed sweatshirts over our jammies, but it was absolutely beautiful!
20150419_091033

I also ordered a fountain to replace the one that sprung a leak that just can’t be fixed. I’m sad because it was a mother’s day gift from Thing 1 and Thing 2 when they were little. But, I’ve had ten years and have loved every moment of it.
This one makes beautiful sounds and we added river rocks to the base level to cover the drain screen. Makes even better water sounds now!
20150419_091041

We ordered an umbrella yesterday and we’re still looking for an outdoor dining set. YBW expressed his pleasure at me putting in the time and effort to make the deck inviting. He’s lived in this house for fifteen years and has never really used it to it’s advantage. I’m happy to help make that a reality. It’s big enough to be it’s own outdoor room and I intend to use it as such. Bring on the gorgeous weather! You’ll find me out on the deck!

Categories: around the house, me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

I can hear the bell

YBW and I went out to Naked Mountain yesterday. The weather was gorgeous, more like later on in May than the end of April. The winery was jumpin’ with folks on blankets and adirondack chairs on the big hill.
Wine club members are still picking up their orders and we got a bottle of wine and a charcuterie plate just for showing up. We sat on the small deck for a while before going about the business of purchase.

On the way we stopped off at the church where we’re getting hitched.
20150419_1

The church is honestly one of the most precious places I’ve ever seen! I love the church building and the graveyard. I can’t wait for the photos to be taken in the fall. I think it will be even more gorgeous than it is now!
20150419_13

There is a bell in the side yard of the church. I was so excited to ring it yesterday and have visions of the most perfect photos of us ringing it on the say of our wedding.
20150419_15

We’re closing in on six months…I say, “Bring it!”

Categories: wedding | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

drink naked (wait, what?)

wpid-20150412_143006.jpgThis is my afternoon.

Naked Mountain Winery (Not only a great winery, but also our wedding venue.) has the rather saucy tagline “Drink Naked”.
They also have wines called “Red Light”, “Skinny Dipper”, “Birthday Suit”, and “Make Me Blush”.
I think it’s actually quite clever. The owners are playful about their names, but very serious about their wines.

This bottle is from the wine club shipment…three of these reds came…only one is left unopened. (I’m feeling a trip up the mountain this weekend.)
Happy Thursday.
Drink Naked.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

the redbuds

Spring is here! The redbuds are blooming!

20150415_7

I stopped on the way home to take photos. It’s gray here today, which made the light harsh. I find that a bit disappointing.

2.20150415_2

If I could be reincarnated as anything I would choose to be a redbud tree.

20150415_14

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

of no party or clique

I’m sad, angry, hurt, and frustrated.

I never pay attention to the rumor mill at my school because I am a grown-up and not a seventh grader with a bank account. But there is a “new and exciting” rumor about me and it was brought to my attention by the one person I really trust. She shared it with me out of love.

I’m the kind of girl who doesn’t really talk about other people. (Well, I guess I sometimes do, but never where I work. I’m not a gossip.) I’m a listener. I have a knack for listening to everyone and never repeating what I hear.
I’m that person who’s not really in any “party” or “clique” but everyone likes to talk to. I hear the most awful things. I also hear some wonderful things.
I don’t know if people talk about me or not. I honestly don’t care. I’m me and that’s quite enough.

The rumor that was brought to my attention is that I “laid hands on” a child and another teacher in the building didn’t want her kid in my class.
I cannot express how much this sickened and upset me. I’m stern and no-nonsense but I am also loving and playful and for someone to accuse me of hurting a child honestly makes me sick.

I went to the curriculum director this morning (our director got hitched this weekend and is out for her honeymoon) with a whole lot of WTF?
She was appalled! She had no idea about this. She has not been told by a parent or another teacher. She says she knows me and knows what I’m like with kids and while “I’m very stern I’m the most loving” teacher. She was apologetic that this happened and she’s going to investigate.
I thanked her and shared the news that I’m considering leaving this summer. I assured her it had nothing to do with this situation, that it was simply time for me to hang up my spurs.

I have spent the better part of the last twenty years working with young children. I absolutely can’t believe anyone would think I didn’t always try to do what’s best for children.

I’m disappointed that my name finally got dragged into the rumor mill. But I’m absolutely heartbroken that this is what the subject matter is.
I know the people that “matter” know there is not truth to it. Parents and children and my co-teacher and the administration know the truth. Most importantly, I know the truth.
Doesn’t make it any less hurtful.

One more reason in my list of why I should be finished here, I guess.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

a little something for Monday morning

The most radio friendly song Blue October every wrote.
I love this band. I love Justin Furstenfeld. He writes from his heart.

This song is starting my day.

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

save the date

I had this idea for what our save the dates would look like for a really long time.
It finally came down to what shoes I would wear. I had several boxes on my bed, a different shoe on each foot and nothing seemed quite right.
Then YBW said: You should wear your flip flops.
It was an AHA! moment!

When I was in SC I pretty much lived in my Havaianas. YBW has always teased that they’re not “proper shoes” and I should cover my feet. (I have pretty feet, just so you know.)
So when he suggested I wear my favorite rubber flip flops it felt so natural to me. The photo represents us accurately. I feel like it celebrates our playfulness as a couple and our differences as individuals.
2.20150209_99
The date runs up the right side on the actual card in bold white numbers. 10.24.15

The best part was the actual photo shoot, we two in our side yard with the camera on the small tripod on one of the kitchen stools me running back and forth between setting up the shot and being in it.
We laughed so much!
It was so very “us”.

When I was visiting in Arizona, my friend’s husband said to me: Tell me about YBW, all I know about him is that he has red shoes.
This amused me.
It also confirmed what I already knew, our save the date card playfully represents who we are as a couple and was absolutely the right choice.

Categories: wedding | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Manassas Battlefield

I absolutely adore Manassas Battlefield. I used to love to go there as a child and spend hours wandering aimlessly. I go there now as a grown up to experience that nostalgia.
I love the history of my home state. I love the fact that these places have been preserved, the physical places as well as the history.
When I go now, I almost always experience the battlefield from behind the camera.

The Henry House is my favorite place to visit. I love the view from the hill there. The story of Mrs Henry, stuck in her home due to illness as the first battle of bull run raged around her always resonated in me. She wasn’t able to leave her home before the fighting and ended up mortally wounded by Union fire.

The Henry House

The Henry House

I love how the changing light affects everything.

The Henry House

The Henry House

YBW likes to wander and play Ingress (To me it seems like a kind of electronic version of capture the flag for grown ups.) on his phone, “capturing” and “hacking” “portals” all around the battlefield.
The cool part of him playing this game on his phone is that I’ll tag along with my camera. We get out of the car, go our separate ways, and come back together after an hour or so.
I get time behind the lens, joy of being in a place I love, and he gains important “points” and “badges”. It’s pretty much win-win.

20131017_532

20131017_552

The Stone House as seen from the top of Henry Hill. It was used as a hospital during both the first and second battles of Bull Run. I remember being at a post sledding bonfire there once when I was really little. I remember feeling a combination of excitement and fear. I was so tired after a day of up and down the hill but the bonfire was so thrilling. All the people, the chaos, me feeling very small and vulnerable and afraid to get separated from my mom caused great anxiety within me.

The Stone House

The Stone House

Sometimes folks get their nickname here.
Thomas Jonathan Jackson became “Stonewall Jackson” when General Bee of South Carolina observed his resolve in battle and cried out, “There stands Jackson like a stone wall! Rally behind the Virginians!”

There stands Jackson like a stone wall.

Stonewall Jackson

Categories: me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

blowing a kiss

I find myself missing my mom today.
I don’t know if it’s simply “that time of year” with my birthday rapidly approaching. Or if it’s that I’ve seen so many robin birds in the last two weeks. Or if it’s because it’s gray and cold today.
Maybe I just miss her.
It’s actually kind of strange because I honestly feel like I miss the idea of her more than I the physicality of her. That probably has to do with the fact that we lived so far apart and didn’t see each other that often.
Maybe it’s just knowing she was there was enough.

At the end of her life, she and I were not speaking often, I was wrapped up in my dad being very sick and burning miles back and forth between VA and SC. But learning how sick she was for so long before she actually died, I’ve figured out that it wasn’t just that I wasn’t reaching out to her, it was that she had stopped communication. She was keeping her illness a secret.
I wonder why she did that. She loved to play the martyr, but not seeking treatment when you’re as sick as she was…well that’s just ridiculous if you ask me.
It wasn’t my choice though. I can’t say how I would choose to behave if I was that sick, diagnosed or not…though I’m pretty sure I’d fight the good fight and do what I could to be well. I can assure you I wouldn’t keep it a secret.
I’m not quick to volunteer information, but I sure as hell don’t hide it.

I miss being able to talk to her whenever I want. To pick up the phone with any big or little thing that runs through my head. To send and receive mail on a whim. We were the quick to send each other any old thing from the crazy post card I found at Tower Records a million years ago, to trinkets like little redhaired Kelly doll or a new color book and box of crayons. She would have adored and fed my (and the Things) love of MLP.

I’m tickled to find myself choosing little trinkets to send to Thing 1 or Thing 2. Carrying on the tradition as it were. It’s as meaningful to them as it is to me. I mean, who doesn’t love getting mail? But more than that, isn’t it lovely to know someone is thinking of you with affection enough to send you a little something?
Thing 2 just got a little box of yellow smiley face gumballs from me. Randomly, because I saw them and they made me giggle. She was so happy to receive them, not only does she know she’s loved, the gumballs were yummy, too!

I suspect when the day comes that I get grandbabies I’ll do the same for them. Just a little love wrapped up with postage affixed waiting in the mailbox. How perfect is that?

It seems absolute crap that I’ll never get to talk to my mom again. Never hear her voice. Laugh with her. Get frustrated or angry with her.

There is so much unresolved baggage between my mom and me. Here’s the thing though, even if she was still here it wouldn’t get sorted. That’s simply not who she was. I’ve come to accept that.
I’d just like to hear her call me baby or tell me that she loves me.
I’d like to tell her I love her.
When I was little and we spoke on the phone, we would always blow a kiss before we hung up. Literally, “mwah, pfff” (kiss sound, blow sound).
I have the very last card she sent me on my magnet board above my desk. It’s a Mother’s Day card. It’s kind of funky like me, kind of sappy like her. She wrote, “I love you, Mommie” just like she signed every other card she ever gave me. But this was the last time she ever wrote it. She died almost exactly six months later.

The robin birds are out in force. I have a strong desire to call her to report the news.
Maybe she knows.
The pragmatic part of me knows it’s not the case but it seems kind of sweet somehow to think it.

I’m not sad. I’m…what? Thoughtful? Yes. Thoughtful. I’m in the positive place of memories and I’m filled with love.
As Sirius told Harry,”The ones that love us never really leave us…and you can always find them in here.”
For good and bad, my mom is in my heart. She always has been and will always be.

Categories: loss, love, me | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

honoring your commitment (to yourself)

Talked with Thing 2 for a long time yesterday. And while we talked of many things, one part of the conversation struck me and stuck with me. She mentioned she’d been thinking about writing again. I shared with her that I loved her writing and thought even though she wasn’t always comfortable with it, I think it’s very good. She said she was flattered.
I didn’t say it to flatter her. I said it because I believe it. She’s actually quite good.

I told her what I know about writing and about writers. They write every day. They make a commitment to write for a certain amount of time each day. Then they honor their commitment.

I told her I thought it would be so good for her. She’s living in the moment only. With no real vision of her future and not much reflection on her past. I think that’s got to be a hard way to live. I suggested committing herself to a writing schedule might help her break out of that moment to moment living.
The more we talked about it, the more I could hear her begin to really like the idea. She was hopeful that it would ignite some passion within her. (I call it the fire in her belly.) She was expressing her feelings of confusion about what path to take, how to move forward in her life. She is concerned that she has no passion. Like Alice, she used to be much more…muchier. She’s lost her muchness. She knows this and isn’t quite sure how to get back her muchness.

I wondered aloud if writing would stoke the fire in her belly, help her find her passion and remind her of her indefinable muchness…I could hear in her voice that she was really inspired by this.
I expressed that I would in no way “hold her accountable” but I would ask occasionally if she’d written simply out of excitement and curiosity. She liked the idea of that too.

I also shared with her that I was in the process of making such a commitment to myself. That I needed to write more…that I let too much time go between times I write.
I haven’t written since I was in Arizona! Partly because I came home and promptly got sick (So sick I didn’t do anything but lie on the couch and drink apple juice for four days straight.) but a visit to my doctor and a prescription for antibiotics and an inhaler finally sorted me. I’m feeling better enough physically that I’m ready to engage my mind.
So while I’ve suggested to my daughter that she make a commitment to herself, I too will commit to a set bit of time to write each day. It may or may not be in this blog, but I will honor myself and write. I too, am occasionally concerned about my muchness. That I’m so busy living the day to day moments that I’m missing something in me.
I remember something my friend and mentor once said about your first year of teaching, she said it’s “survival year”. I believe that’s true of your first year of anything. The first year of me being here not only held normal adjustments to the spectacular life changes. It was a year in which my beloved child told me she didn’t want me to be her mommy anymore. It was a year in which my dad unexpectedly died. It was a year in which my child and I found our way back to each other. She came to live with us here and left again in a six week period. It was a year in which I changed classrooms in a school where I’ve never felt I completely belong. And (This is the bestest bit!) this was a year in which the man I’ve loved for the last five years put a ring on my finger and asked to call me his wife.
My muchness is all over the freaking place!

Thing 2 and I have traded some snapchats this afternoon. I send her a questioning face asking if she had decided to write today.
She did!
And now I am.
We’re each honoring our commitment to ourselves. I feel a bit as though we’re honoring a commitment to each other too. But that’s honestly not what it’s about, it’s about respecting the decision to do something for ourselves.

Categories: me, on being a mom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com. The Adventure Journal Theme.

Joel vs. Books

It looks like the books are winning...

Pioneer Books

Chat about books...and a cup of tea perhaps.

All that is Blue

thoughts, passions, inspirations

betternotbroken

type A personality meets plan B

Mamamaitri

photography, words...singer'n stuff creative...livin' lovin' to engage, sharin', lookin' at 'n takin' snaps

redwhiteandlittleblackdress

A fine WordPress.com site

a day in the (preschool) life

teaching and learning together

postalpaperphile

Obsessional about all things paper based

Quoth The Wordsmith

Exploring words with a wordsmith

Kristen Lamb's Blog

We Are Not Alone

JackCollier7

The Warrior Monk's Guide to Survival, Spirituality, and Synchronicity

witlessdatingafterfifty

Relationships reveal our hearts.

Adventures's Blog

finding happiness in everything

Aligi

acting like I get it

Aussa Lorens

Hacker. Ninja. Hooker. Spy.

Being the Memoirs of Helena Hann-Basquiat, Dilettante

Home of your favourite dilettante, and her creepy alter ego, Jessica B. Bell

I Should Really Write More

All Excuses Welcome.

making family memories one by one

A Holistic Journey

Finding my way back out of motherhood -- while mothering

Eli Glasman

Site of author Eli Glasman

write meg!

Another take on writing, reading, loving -- and eating

Miss Lou Acquiring Lore

Gallery of Life...

Travellers

Some kind of journey.

Hey, you're the funny one!

Hilarious candy coating, mushy sardine and banana filling.

Planet Bell

A Travel and Photo Blog by World Traveler Jeff Bell

Squirrel Thoughts

Because life is a little bit nuts

Jeff Ryan Peters

Writer. Dream chaser. Soon to be Mars resident.

Ginger's Grocery

Come on in and browse. The biscuits were made fresh this morning, the Slush Puppie machine was just refilled with a new bottle of red syrup, and we have the biggest selection of bait this close to town.

THE LIFE & TIMES OF A NOBODY

WARNING: this blog may contain language and opinions some people may find offensive, but it's mostly just me letting off steam.

earthSTILLS

Words and Images

Vicky...the Northern Chicky

Grab a Glass of Wine and Let Me Tell You About My Day!

choosingmyownwellbeing

A woman letting go of a thirty-year marriage

Living with Mommy Bipolar

Living With Mommy Bipolar A Child With Autism and another with O.D.D. Our Daily Life

Natasha's Memory Garden

A fine WordPress.com site

Simple Pleasures

Visual Poetry, Photography and Quotes

SOCIAL BRIDGE

Jean Tubridy ~ Connecting with you from Ireland

Leading Essentially

The world is a rapidly changing place looking for a new form of leadership.

Almost Spring

Transforming my life from we to me

Jon Negroni

Now Conspiring

The Usual Foolishness

It's what I do

Teacher Tidbits

The teacher has become the student. Learn with me!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 164 other followers