We all made it to Maine! I finally met my nephew! Good times are being had. Although we’re all gathered here for Grampy (and Nana’s) memorial graveside service, we’re all in good spirits and enjoying the fact that we’re all together, which unfortunately does not happen very often. Here are some pics from the last couple of days.
Bastrop State Park
Crappy shot of Ghostbusters in the park
No photos of this, but Grant, Kate and I went to watch the UT inter-house quidditch matches this morning. It was crazy and brutal! Something like tackle football mixed with dodgeball. The snitch is a person that has a ball hanging off their back (think flag football) and the two seekers have to get it off. However, the snitch can go anywhere, so s/he could run around the whole campus then come back 20 minutes later if they wanted. The guy who played the snitch this morning was clearly both a long distance runner and a mixed martial artist, because as soon as the two seekers came at him- all bets were off. Body-slams, flips, tackles- all fair game. So intense. I saw a grown-ass man wrestle a small girl for 45 seconds to try and get the quaffle from her. I was rooting for Ravenclaw, but Gryffindor took the cake.
We lost a wonderful grandfather, father, and friend last night. As the only grandfather I ever knew, he held a very special place in my life and in my heart. “Has anybody told you that they loved you yet today? Well I do.” That’s what he used to tell me all the time. I know that we meant a lot to each other. When I think about Grampy as I knew him, I remember a fiercely loyal man who loved his family to the moon and back. I remember a man who would sing to his wife every night before they went to bed. I remember a man who always had a jackknife on him. I remember a man who always gave me candy, (especially Twizzlers, which I would then bite off both ends and drink a can of orange soda through). I remember a man who could make one helluva batch of baked beans. I remember a man who loved food, and loved to burp really loudly ;). I remember a man who used to drive really slowly in his old maroon Jeep Grand Cherokee with JAX as the license plate. I remember a man who loved to reminisce about the ‘good ol days’ of his youth. I remember a man that would sometimes tell dirty stories to Doug and Adam. I remember a man who couldn’t go anywhere around town without running into fifteen people that he knew. I remember a man who loved his granddaughter so much that he would drive her and her friends to cheering in a blizzard. I remember a man who didn’t get his life served to him on a silver platter, but he worked hard, loved hard, and was truly a good soul. Grampy, you will be missed so dearly by all who were lucky enough to know you.
Hi friends! It’s Tuesday and I’m feeling great. I’ve been in a weird funk for a week or so following a talk Grant and I had about our future plans (it was a good talk, but it just put me in a weird head space regarding being in Austin). Anyway, I’m glad to report that I had a moment of clarity yesterday and realized that I need to stop living in a future that hasn’t even happened it. I need to be here, now! Therefore, I’m re-excited to be here and have lots of fun!
Tomorrow starts our (hopefully) weekly nature explorations. Erica and I want to do some naturing/camping, so we start tomorrow with Grant and Will. We’re headed to Balcones Canyonlands!
Speaking of Grant, look who lost some hair today!
Aside: Mockingbirds are SO neat. Sometime when I’m sitting out on the front porch a mockingbird will come along and sit in our bougainvillea and sing his little heart out. It’s really quite impressive the number of different vocalizations they can do. If I didn’t know better, I’d think there were fifteen different species of birds singing their own unique song. It makes me smile.
I ate this scrumptious candy corn cupcake from Capital City Bakery today. It was awesome. That is all.
Here’s my impromptu new Green Clean Maine desk setup. I figured if I’m going to be talking to clients and helping with recruitment, I probably should find somewhere to work besides my bed. So far, so good, AND It costed me less than 15$!
Both of the boys have dates tonight (oooo!) so Grant and I are on our own. To celebrate, we shall watch New Girl and eat rice and beans 🙂 Oh, and Dulcinea says hi!
All in all, not a bad week. Highlights include hanging with Erica and making homemade philly cheesesteak sammies and spending two sessions with little kittens learning how to do bottle baby feeding (I passed training, btw!) Basically, the cutest thing you could ever imagine. Some of them purr and just want to snuggle. I can’t take pics in there, but just imagine something like this:
Dulcinea decided to make a dash for freedom last night, and succeeded. The screen door was accidentally left open for a minute or so, and then she was gone. We didn’t know she had gotten out until I looked out into the carport and there she was! Of course as soon as I opened the door to retrieve her, she ran under the front porch out of arms reach. I figured she’d be fine so I went back inside. Grant stayed out and tried to stalk her in the dark, but incidentally I opened to door at the wrong time, so she ran under the back porch. Much to our dismay, she wouldn’t come out, so we eventually had to go to bed, hoping that the big raccoon that visited us the other night wouldn’t come around for another midnight wander. I woke up at 8am this morning and I had this weird feeling like I was supposed to do something today but couldn’t remember what, then with a jolt of dread I suddenly remembered about Dulci. I jumped out of bed and went into the living room, looked out on the back porch, and lo and behold there she was just sitting calmly on the bench waiting to be let in. That little rapscallion.
Hey kids, want some candy? Ok, well I won’t actually be wearing this freaky mask on all Hallows Eve to scare little children because I will be in MAINE! Yes, that’s right folks. A last minute family reunion of sorts will be taking place from Oct 30th-Nov 6th. I finally get to meet my little nephew! AND I only paid $250 for a round trip ticket!
Can you believe how cute this guys is!? I mean, seriously. It’s almost pointless for Grant and I to ever even have children, since I already know they’re not going to live up to that adorable face!
Ok, off to enjoy the nice fall weather (65 degrees!) and Saturday sun!
My number one take home from the skatepark today is that teenage boys are super annoying. Honestly, I already knew this, but as I don’t hang around teenage boys (although sometimes I feel like I do 😉 ), I sometimes forget. They talk about stupid things in stupid ways. They talk about how awesome weed and alcohol are, and f!*k is the most used word in their vocabulary (though shit is a close second). They deal weed, eat pizza, and run after the ice cream truck. Actually, just about the only thing they don’t do at the skatepark is….skate. That’s right. I didn’t see any of them actually USE their skateboards.
Anyway, after John and Will both- to use a common skatepark phrase- ate shit a bunch of times, we decided it was time to go. Since we were up North anyway, we wanted to check out a frisbee golf course.
It was the first time “frolfing” for most of us, and it was pretty ok. I hesitate to throw out the word “fun” for the following reasons:
1. It was hella hot out, and we were all sweating to death with no beverages to quench our thirst.
2. The course was super confusing and we got turned around a bunch of times trying to find the next basket.
3. I was wearing sandals, and spend half of my time in nettle/stingy grass, so I was highly uncomfortable.
4. Some (read:one) of us gets a little competitive when it comes to, well, anything really, including frisbee golf.
5. We kept losing our frisbees in peoples’ lawns, in a cactus patch, in the woods, etc., and we kept having to take a bunch of time to locate them. In the hot, hot sun.
6. It took forever. Like- 3 hours.
BUT despite all of that it really wasn’t awful. Just maybe would have been better in pants and shoes on a cooler day. Duly noted.
On a lighter note, look at all the yummy things I’ve eaten today! For breakfast, a traditional Costa Rican dish of gallo pinto, complete with plantains, avocado, and warmed corn tortillas. For dinner(ish), a cold lentil salad with apples, cucumber, red onion, lemon, cilantro, and balsamic vinegar. Mmmm! Grant and I both agree that we’ve been eating so well since we’ve been here. I’m not sure if it’s the lack of money that’s forcing us to buy in bulk- therefore eating more whole foods, or just wanting to eat lighter because of the heat? Either way, it’s been great (and tasty!)
I found out the hard way that I am RIDICULOUSLY allergic to the little bugs around here. I went out in our back lawn for THREE MINUTES yesterday to feel inside our new compost bin and take a picture of some mushrooms, and suddenly I realized that my legs were on fire. I ran inside and about 15 of these suckers popped up:
I’ve never felt such powerful itchiness before. I spent the next 30 minutes alternating between furiously raking my legs and slathering on hydrocortisone cream. It was really awful. I’m going to pretend that it’s because I just started using this bottle of Dove body wash that I found in the shed, and it’s super duper smelly. Switching back to Dr. Bronners now….
Lastly, Grant and I went to our first show in Austin. It was at Mohawk, which is a very cool and interesting venue. We saw the Dodos! We love them, but unfortunately the first half of the set was super blown out (bad sound techs or something), and we could hardly hear any vocals, just electric guitar buzzing. Luckily, they fixed it about halfway through, and they played a couple of my favorite acoustic songs from their album Visiter, which we both love. All in all, a great time!
I feel good about this week. It had its minor ups and downs, but I’m going into Friday feeling pretty damn happy. I got to see a three day old kitten drink from a bottle, I joined a volunteer coordinating group at Austin Pets Alive, I finally went out on the town with Erica for some girl time, and I conquered a challenging work project, for starters!
The weather this week has been phenomenal. 80’s and sunny- just how I like it. As New England settles into fall, we’re beginning a perfect east coast summer. 🙂 Dulcinea has found two new favorite spots to hang out. One, as pictured above, is on someone’s laptop case beside the tv, and the other is in the yarn basket! Yes! (That’s secretly why I put it out). She also got to be supervised on the porch for 10 minutes or so.
This is a little bottle of heaven, and I want everything in my life to smell like it. In fact, I’m smelling it right now because I just sprayed it all over my room. And my bed. And my clothes.
Kate and I are doing a little project for the APA kitties by crocheting them soft cuddle squares to sit on. I made my first one and wanted to try it out, so I put it down and lo and behold, Dulci sat her little butt right on it! I think she likes it, so I’m going to let her keep that one, but more are in the works!
You guys, I’m really excited about excel. Ok, so I’ve been excited about excel for awhile, but I’ve just delved into the realm of VBA and macros and all that fun stuff, and it’s so freakin interesting! I wrote two cool macros for Green Clean today that are going to save the office lots of time doing payroll. I even debugged a line of code that wasn’t working properly. I’m pretty proud of myself I must say. I also got a bunch of new work projects, so the OH MY GOD FIND A JOB ALREADY stress has abated a bit.
Here’s some pics of the boys skateboarding out front from yesterday: (It pays to live on a wannabe cul de sac)
Finally, here’s what’s happening in the dining room right now. Like many nights, Will and John round out the day with a few games of Magic.