Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The "True" New Year

September has always felt like the beginning of the year to me, much more so than January 1st.  I'm sure that it stems back to going back to school myself, and now it's my kids' turn.

Will actually started second grade last week, our town goes back EARLY!  He was pretty apprehensive the night before but was all smiles at pickup from the afterschool program the next day.  He wasn't really chatty, but did tell me that his new teacher is "Great!,  She's really great, Mom."  Considering I had already gotten at least one phone call home at this point, I'm already feeling more positive about this year in general.  And honestly, I think that he is, too.

Seanie's in his last year of preschool.  Where has my baby gone??  He's thrilled to have moved up to the "Big Kid" class and tells me all about his friends and what he's doing in school every day.  I cannot believe that this time next year he'll be in kindergarten.  It just doesn't seem possible.

This week everything goes back to the full swing of the fall schedule.  Karate, soccer, yoga classes for me, volleyball....it'll take a few weeks to get there but we will arrive in our own fashion.

Another thing that September brings....Christmas knitting!  I've got my list sorted and am in full force, with one item almost completed.  I smited the Knitting Gods by proclaiming this one item "Quite Possibly the Best thing I've ever knitted!" when it wasn't quite complete.  Now eight rows need to be frogged and started over because I was paying more attention to "Rizzoli and Isles" than I was when counting the number of stitches that I was picking up.  It still has time to be the Best Thing.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Home Stretch

When I first wrote my Day Zero List, 9/28/14 seemed so very far away.  Now I am merely 27 days away from it, and well...I'm not going to finish the list!  In all honesty, I kind of got away from it.  That being said, I am looking to finish some more of those things...

And in this vein of thought...I made my third beach venture last week, for the annual Karate Picnic.  We had a ton of fun at a local lake about 15 minutes from here, with a huge throng of kids from Will's karate school.  They had a class on the beach, and then played to their hearts content on the pirate ship on the beach and in the water.  Sean and Will were in their glory, and I got to catch up with a knitting friend that I hadn't seen in ages.

Then today, I made cinnamon rolls!  From scratch!  I'll post something separately about it, because it was quite an adventure.

Next up....think I'm finally going to send a secret to Postsecret.  I've been mulling ideas over in my head and it's the "handmade" postcard that's dragging me down.  Must. Remedy.

Other than that...it's September!  Time for fall and all the wonderful things that come with it.

Monday, August 18, 2014

2014 Knit-Along!

My friend Moe and I do a KAL (knit-along) every year.  We've done shawls for the past two years but this year decided to do something really fun:

"Penny's Santa Hat" from the third season of "The Big Bang Theory."

She and I, along with our significant others, are big fans of TBBT.  And this hat is simply adorable....a two-tailed Santa hat with big pom-poms and some cabling to make it interesting.  

Both of us are casting on tonight in our respective homes.  We'll get a photo together when she visits me this winter sometime.  :)

Thursday, August 14, 2014

For the Sake of Posterity

Hubby had to go to work today for 7AM, meaning that I was on duty for BOTH kids this morning.  Up early, showered and dressed.  Lunches made, kids up and eating breakfast without incident.  Kids were cheerful and compliant; no whining, arguing, fighting about whose turn it is to brush their teeth.  Even managed to start a load of laundry and get it in the dryer before I left, AND load the dishwasher.  Nothing forgotten, no second (or third!) trips into the house for forgotten glasses and snacks, or beloved Weegee the Blanket.  Hugs and kisses all around, drop-offs went well and I got to work at 9:03am.

Am I bragging?  No.  This post is just going to serve as a reminder.  That for all of the mornings that I've had a huge mess to contend with (baby poop, dog vomit) can't-find-my-left-sneaker crises, kids fighting over one looking at the other "funny", missing the bus, etc etc  that these mornings CAN and DO exist!  And that they should be relished whenever they show up, because baby, these are rare.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday Rumblings

Ugh...it's Monday Again.  Least favorite day of the week.  I stay up late every Sunday, trying to stretch out as much of the weekend as possible, but haven't been successful to stop Monday from coming.  So far, anyway.

Having a movie at work today.  It's a classic:  9 to 5, starring Lily Tomlin, Jane Fonda and Dolly Parton.  It's one of the first movies that I remember from when I was a kid.  Not that it's a kid movie...sheesh!  Tomorrow we're having a "beginner painting" class.  The description says that it's even for people who've never painted before.  Wish I didn't have an office full of paperwork to work on, it sounds like fun!

Last week I got to meet up with an old friend for coffee, and give her the sweater that I made for her daughter a few months back.  It was a bear sweater, and so sweet.  She promptly sent me photos of her daughter wearing it and it looks wonderful!  I don't take "commission requests" often and I've never accepted money for something that I made.  Knitting is a hobby for me and I'd hate for it to start feeling like work.  That being said, I really enjoyed this and may make another animal sweater someday!

Started my Christmas Knitting.  Yep....I'm that girl again this year.  It was SO nice to have it all out of the way two weeks before Christmas last year that I want to experience that calm again.  Right now on the needles:  a pair of adorable green cotton baby leggings for a little boy not yet born, a gray hoodie sweater for my oldest and a lace scarf that I'm making for charity.  Oh, and those damned, damned blue socks for myself that I started over a year ago.  I'm insistent on finishing those before starting another pair.

And this weekend....headed to Maine to visit Maureen and Sky.  We're even bringing Joey this time.  Joey loves to travel and he LOVES Maureen and Sky.  Looking forward to a few days away!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Summer's Inevitable End

Three weeks of summer left.  Then it's back to school, back to routine.  Shopping with Will, haircuts, summer homework assignments (that we forgot about) all this week.  Karate camp coming to an end, bedtime enforcement laziness grinding to a halt, etc etc etc.

Is it me, or do summers seem to get shorter as time marches on?

Friday, July 25, 2014

Harry Potter Happiness

In the weeks before our trip, Universal Studios started running ads for their new Harry Potter attraction.  We hadn't made plans to go to Universal, because it was expensive and having been there nine years ago, didn't think they had much to offer then.

But then, there was an hour-long TV special on Diagon Alley, at Universal Studios.  Will and I watched together, amazed.  I said to Brian, "Now I'm dying to go!"  Because he's so wonderful, he said "Not like we're going to Orlando all the time.  Since Sean and I won't get anything out of it, why don't I drop the two of you off one day?"  :)

And so we went!

Hogsmeade, the Magical Village.  We got to try butterbeer here!  It's delicious and tastes like butterscotch.

Trying to pull off a selfie in front of Hogsmeade.  

Look!  It's one of Hagrid's "Monster books."  This was creepy-looking up close and actually growled.

Hogwarts!  The ride "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey" is inside, and you walk all through Hogwarts to get to it.  We went through some passages that had talking portraits just like in the books.  In one area, the portraits of the four founders of Hogwarts argue with each other...it was incredible.  I had to beg/convince Will to go on the ride with me, it wasn't easy.  Afterwards when I asked what he thought of it, he said "Uh....it had it's ups and downs.  I liked the quidditch flying but was scared of the dementors."

Bought him his very own wand.  One of the COOLEST features of the Harry Potter Wizarding World is that there were wand prompts everywhere, and they were interactive with the wands.  Standing in front of Honeydukes, if you made a particular movement with your wand arm and repeated the spell written on the ground, a big box of chocolate frogs would open in the window and start ribbitting.

Bertie Botts every flavour beans!  We brought some home and are afraid to try them.....you would be too with flavours like earthworm, earwax and ugh....VOMIT.

This is where we picked up the new Hogwarts Express Train and took it to the other side of the park, to Diagon Alley.  Diagon Alley was simply incredible.  You step out onto what looks like the streets of London, and have to go looking for Diagon Alley because obviously there's no signs.  And then suddenly, there you are!  It was absolutely crowded, but you couldn't hear the people in Diagon Alley from the street.  I don't know how they do that!

Weasley's Wizardly Wheezes.

I can't say enough good things about this experience.  I love how Universal Employees really get into it.  We were in a shop and looking at hats and gloves with "Gryffindor" markings and an employee said "Professor Trelawney warned me to expect this....need to restock the gloves!"  I was paying for a Christmas ornament in the same shop and when it came time to sign the receipt the cashier said "Your signature for the Ministry, please."  They did such a great job bringing the pages of the book alive!

p.s.  the only thing I feel that we missed out on was not getting to ride "Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts."  Brian dropped us off really early, soon after the park opened.  We went to the Hogsmeade Side first and by the time we made it to the Diagon Alley side the ride had a 300 minute wait.  Yeah.....that's five hours.  FIVE HOURS.  There's no way a seven year old can stand in a hot line for 5 hours....and I promised no more wild rides after the last one!  There's always next time.  :)