Saturday, March 30, 2013

SPRING BREAK! Glasses Gals

Wednesday we went to our opthamologist to get my annual exam and to re-do Isabel's exam.  She's not up for her annual, yet she need to get re-checked.  Her school did free screenings and noticed that even with her glasses, she was having a hard time reading. I noticed her squinting at the tv while wearing glasses too.


This meant out-of-pocket expenses on both the exam and the new glasses she would need.   We asked about replacing the lenses on the frames she already had, but with the sale they were having, it would have come out to about the same to just get new frames too.

We walked around the mall and then had lunch, killing time while her glasses were made up.  Cute purple frames for my cute gal.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


The fair's in town, the fair's in town! Just in time for Spring Break.

Isabel and I headed over Tuesday afternoon for some fun.

About to ride on the Sky Flyer with me.

On the huge ferris wheel

After a couple of hours of mini-coasters, jumbo slides, haunted houses, fun houses, etc., Jacob showed up to join in the fun. Remember, he still had classes - nee ner nee ner.

Barf!  I opted OUT of this one.
Can you see the 2 of them in there?

Isabel and Jacob "hang gliding" on the Cliff Hanger

Again, no thanks. There they are.

We also did the barftastic Fireball 2000.  The link will take you to someone's picture of it on Flickr.  I was on it, so no pictures.  Holy gross.  The older I get, the less I can tolerate fair rides!

Now Fair food, on the other hand,...nope, same thing.  Can't tolerate it much either.  I enjoyed eating this here funnel cake and that corn dog later, but MAN did I feel gross at the end of the night.  

Isabel and I were there for about 4 hours.  It was chilly but super fun.

Monday, March 25, 2013

SPRING BREAK! Zipping Gals

One of things on our Spring Break list was to go on the courses at ZoomAir at the Central Florida Zoo in Sanford, Florida. (It's not called the Sanford Zoo, people.)  Isabel wanted to jump right into the hardest course, of course.  But upon arriving, she got a little cold feet and decided to do the kids' course instead. This meant I could not go on it with her.  :(

She was a little hesitant at first, but she got into the swing of it.  She tends to be afraid of the unknown and expresses that fear with whining.  She kept saying "Ow, Ow" when she first put the harness on and later when she did the first zip line and she hit the ground, she did the "ow ow" thing again.   

Flat Stanley is visiting us
courtesy of my youngest sister's daughter, Lyric.

Hi Iz! Hi Stanley!

There were two courses.  The second one was higher and harder, but she did better there.  She was used to it by then and had a ball. She said she wished there were more to do.  Next time, we will all go on the Upland course; she's now officially 54" tall and can do that one with us.   

This ending's a little tame.  I think she'll do fine on the adult course with daddy and me going with her.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

SPRING BREAK! Cooking Gals.


It's Isabel's spring break.  Sadly, now that Jacob's in college, his breaks no longer coincide with hers.  We were going to take an Atlanta trip, but with some problems with scheduling at his work, David did not want to take the time off until it all got resolved (resolution in T-minus 2 weeks and counting.)

I decided I really wanted the time off, so I asked and my boss said yes, even though it was month-end, which is really not usually done (so thank you boss.)

It's mostly going to be a girls' week here.

We've started early.  While at a local Christian bookstore re-buying Toby Mac's "Eye On It"  (I'd given my copy to big sis Brenda when she came up to help with the party), Isabel asked if she could get a book and I said yes.  Most of the books, though, were either too baby-ish or too grown/teen for her.  It was weird.  Nothing really for her age group, so she asked if she could get a cookbook.  Sure, why not.


When we got home, Jacob laughed. " How exactly is this Christian?"  I explained that it was really the only thing for her age that she wanted.

She's made (with very little help from me)  four things so far;

1) Peanut butter ice cream smoothie (yum! sorry, no pics).

2) Peanut butter bumbles (little peanut butter/oatmeal snacks) that are supposed to look like bumble bees.

3) A Corn Souffle that was AMAZING! (I pretty much just got it in and out of the oven.)

4) A Greek Salad Pasta that everyone ate up, except her.

She's loving this book.  Next up. Meatless Minestrone Soup.  :)

Sunday, March 17, 2013


Poor Jacob.

Ha ha ha.

I mean...poor Jacob.

Apparently, people at his new work give each other nicknames. Jacob came home last night and said "I've found out I have a nickname at work.  Sassy Spanish girl (that's what he calls this one girl) called me over and told me."

So I asked what it was.

Harry Potter.

Ha ha ha ha. OK, I laugh because this is his life.  Everywhere, he's told he looks like Harry Potter.  We've gotten to the front of the line of a  new Universal Ride because of his looks.  For a while though, like 2-3 years, he grew his hair out and the resemblance faded.

Now, he's cut his hair pretty short and I love it.  He looks like Harry again, all except for the color of the eyes.  Side note: He refuses  to wear the Gryffindor robe I got for Christmas one year for any Halloween, on principle.  I say do it and have loads of fun!

I sent a text message to 4 family members, my hubby included.  I said "Jake got a new nickname at work. What is it?"

Three of the four guessed Harry Potter on the first guess.  The 4th person guessed Harry on the second try.

Jacob with my older sister Brenda, at Stetson.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Party Like a Pony

Isabel's 9th birthday party was a rousing good time!  Boy oh boy, was it a long weekend this past weekend.

The week ended rather rushed for me due to work issues.  One manager on vacation, another out of town for work and I was left to fend for myself.  This made me late getting home several nights and I was in a slight panic come Friday morning. I had to get home that evening and put a cake together.  I had not even started coloring fondant yet and I needed to assemble everything AND set up the party for the next morning.

While at work, my older sister Brenda in Palm Beach county sends me a text asking me if I had finished the cake.  I replied that I had baked a cake, yes, but that I had to get everything done that night and it was going to be a looooooong night.

I race home and immediately set to coloring fondant.  "Moooom, what's for dinner?"  "Nothing!  Eat an apple!!"  LOL, that's how I felt. Rushed and crazed!  Isabel started watching a movie and there was a loud scene.  I thought I heard a knock at the door but then I thought it was the surround sound for the movie.  Best go check.

I open the door and there's my sister Brenda, fresh from her 2.5 hour drive to spend the weekend and help me with the party. I was SO happy.

While I colored fondant, Brenda set to getting the house decorated for the party. Jake was sent off to buy dinner after setting up a foldable table in the entrance way.  Armed with scissors, balloons, a party paper plate and miscellaneous items from my house,  Brenda proceeded to create a centerpiece and decor for the tables.

Cupcake decorating table photo DSC_0001_zps5ce3b852.jpg

She then headed back to help me finish decorating the cake.

Cute! photo DSC03542_zps62ed4ff5.jpg

The birthday gal photo DSC03538627x640_zps365391a9.jpg

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic!  If you have not heard of the newest incarnation of the My Little Pony brand, where have ya been??  SUPER popular show, even with the college crowd and the cosplay fans.

My Little Pony Friendship is Magic cake photo DSC_0012_zps488d9def.jpg

I decided on a cupcake decorating station because, hello?  I have everything here and I thought it'd be loads of fun.  After games and pizza, we got to the decorating.

Cupcake Decorating Station photo DSC03567640x480_zps726110a3.jpg

It was a messy, fun time!

Decorating time! photo DSCF0048640x480_zps381252e8.jpg

My sister Jany above in red came from Tampa too with my niece.  She helped me clean while big sis Brenda entertained the gals.

She gets embarrassed when they sing photo DSCF0053640x480_zpseed38005.jpg
She gets embarrassed every year when we sing to her.

Yummy! photo DSC03572_zps723dd158.jpg

The party was from 11 to 2.   All the gals went home with a goody bag and a carry-box for their cupcakes.

And then two party guests show up at 2, because the older sibling misread the invitation.

Oh, I felt SO bad for them.  The older sibling was mortified, so big sis Brenda and I set these two up in the kitchen with pizza, cake and soda, and then we brought everything back out to decorate more cupcakes with the new arrivals.  We played a couple of board games and two hours after they arrived, I sent them home with cupcakes and goody bags.

Then I passed out on the couch in the loft.  I can't party like a pony anymore.  Too old for that hay. :)

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Elementary School Run and Women's Retreat

Saturday was a long day for me.

It began with my daughter and me waking up around 6:30 a.m. to get ready for a 2-mile fun run, hosted by the P.E. department at 7:30 a.m. at her school's field.

But before we could go there, we had to stop off our church to drop off brownies, cupcakes and cake pops I had made for the Women's Retreat that I was attending that same morning at 9:30 a.m.  With some help from some of the youth, we got the Jeep unloaded and then heading a half-mile away to Isabel's school for the run.  It was 43 degrees when we arrived.  That's like....20 in Florida terms.  We were COLD.

Isabel stretches with one of the moms and some kids before the race.

Teachers, parents and kids waiting for the start of the race.

We had to do 2 miles.  Eight laps around the field equaled 2 miles.  Every time we did a loop, we received a Popsicle stick to keep track of how many we had done.  When you collected 8, you were done.  Isabel took off with a group of kids.  Here she is, half a lap ahead of me.  I started walking fast and did run a little bit when Isabel ran past me again.  Not too much, but I ran a bit.  Eventually, I ended up walking and talking with Isabel's second grade teacher from last year, with whom I realized I had a lot in common. We had a good time fast-walking around.

Somehow,  I lapped Isabel, so when her 2nd grade teacher and I got stick # 8, she was only on #7, so she booked it around one more time.  She was not the last, mind you. There was a large group way behind her (can't even see them in the picture below)  still needing to finish their final lap as well.

Go Izzy! Go Izzy!

After the run, we got some water, bananas and bagels with cream cheese from the school.  Yum!  It was not really a fund-raiser, it was more of a "be healthy with your family" day and I am very glad she and I participated.

We quickly hopped in the Jeep and headed home, only 1.5 miles away, so I could shower, change and head back to the women's retreat from 9:30 - 2 p.m. at the church.

We had a nice breakfast and lunch provided for us, including the desserts I provided.

It was a really good way to meet new women, read the Word and learn from others' experiences. 

By the time I got home, I was exhausted and my left knee was angry with me for the attempted running I did with Isabel.  I took some pain reliever and spent the rest of the afternoon reading and watching t.v.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Week with the Outlaws

I was talking to my co-worker bffs (Seattle, Baltimore, Boston gals) about a last-minute planned trip my in-laws were planning, and that they were coming down for a week and we were all excited about it.  Then I said "You know, I hit the 'In-law Lottery' twice.  I am blessed."  It's true. No matter what I say (or don't) about Jacob's dad, I can say my in-laws were amazing people, God rest their souls.

My in-laws now are good people.  I am blessed to have them in my life. WE are blessed, Jacob and I.  Jacob came into this family at the same time I did.  They took us, kit and caboodle.  When Jacob graduated, my in-laws drove down from the Tennessee/Georgia border, along with my single brother in-law, my other brother-in-law, his wife and two babies.  They are not even related by blood but they drove down 9+ hours to watch him graduate.  The love I feel for them over it is so huge, it hurts my chest sometimes. When I mentioned this to my sister-in-law (married to David's brother) who came down with her 2 babies, she said "Well of course.  He's part of the family.  He's ours."

OK. Enough mushy stuff.

David's parents came down to spend a week.  I had to work but my boss graciously let me take two days off during the week to be with them.  The days where I had to work, my in-laws kept themselves very busy visiting relatives in cities a couple of hours away, visiting old friends for lunch an hour away, going to Bok Tower Gardens, and doing other fun things.  On the days I was home, my mother-in-law and I baked for a Women's retreat I volunteered baked goods for, and then we all 4 went to Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge while the kids were at school.

My mother-in-law is an avid "birder." I have no idea what you call a bird watcher fan.  I think Birder is right. Anyway, we're in the Visitor's Center.  My m-i-l mentions that she wished she could see a Painted Bunting, the ever-elusive bird she has never been able to see.    I kid you not, two minutes later, David and his dad run in, saying "Mom!  There are Painted Buntings outside!"

The excitement was palpable; it was great.  And me with just my point & click camera!  I'd left the fancy Nikon at home!  My in-laws and several different visitors to the Refuge took turns taking pictures.  How awesome for them to get to finally see one here!

We took a scenic drive, saw some alligators and had a quick lunch before heading back home for a birthday dinner for our 9-year old.  They left Saturday for home.

Friday, March 1, 2013