Thursday, July 23, 2015

Neighborhood Royalty!

It's a long standing joke  among family and friends that I am queen...
 
Queen of what?  Just about anything:  the Inline hockey parents, the neighborhood, the family, even queen of the kitchen (and we all know that's a joke).
 
Last night I was performing my queenly duties of taking out the trash when my neighbor called out
(yes, called out...we are civilized around here, we don't yell)
she had something she wanted me to see...
 
Her daughter, Grace,  came out the door...
 
Glowing!
 
 
 
She had just been chosen first runner up in the Petite Miss Saxonburg pagent!
 
Look at that smile, that pose...seriously, this girl is a natural!
 
Of course, good things come in twos...
 
 
And I think Olivia was thrilled to be lady in waiting to our newest neighborhood royalty!
 
 
~sigh~
 
It's good to be queen (complete with Corgi),
 but it's more fun to be surrounded by royalty!
 
Have I mentioned lately how much I like living here?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Rolling on the River!

After what seemed like months of rain, rain and more rain, we had two sunny Sundays in a row...

I rustled up some grub...



or at least a crock pot of ham barbecue;
not just ANY barbecue, though.
 
I used a recipe Mr.K's mother used when she had card club.
 
Me, when it was time to make barbecue, I opened a bottle.
This time, I actually cooked it...with things I never knew were needed for barbecue sauce!
It was very good! 


Tony, the girls (Shirley and Winnie) and I headed up to the river early, before the crowd.

We have that routine, first able bodied male that gets there has to cut the grass...

 
And get the first bee sting!
 
But it always looks so nice when it's done...
 
Afterwards, he opened the boat and got it ready...
 
 
And took a break.
It was so humid and hot!
 
 
 

 Tony filled the pool for Shirley, but Shirley needed a little help figuring it out...
So Tony threw an empty water bottle in the pool for her to retrieve...



And when that didn't help, Tony took action!
 

She stayed in the water for .05 seconds!
 
 
  
We still had time before Mr.K and his family came, so we turned on the air conditioner...
and told Winnie and Shirley to wait inside...
 

While we took the kayaks out for a spin...

 
 


Ever since I admitted...on this blog...that I cannot swim,
the kids make me wear a life jacket when we do anything on the water...


We went up the river...


 
 Checking out all the docks and toys people have on the water...
 
We even saw this...
 
A bicycle ramp!

I'm not used to paddling...and by time we got back...
 

I was happy to see our dock!


We took a break and then the rest of our company came...
 
Nick and Annett, Mr.K's grandson and daughter-in-law...
 
 
Everyone was anxious to take the boat out for a ride...

I volunteered to stay behind with the dogs...

 
I guess I looked pretty pathetic, sitting on the stairs...
but hey!  Didn't they do a nice job on them?
 
The first thing they had to do was get Mr.K in the boat!
 
 
 
 
That wasn't too bad... 
 
Incidentally, don't you just love that sign on top of the stairs?
Andy found it a while ago and saved it for these stairs...
BUT
at the end of May, I took a terrible fall down the stairs in our house
and he wasn't sure that I would think it was funny...
 
I love it!
 
They finally got everyone loaded into the boat...
 
 
And off they went!



They were gone for quite a while, Tony gave them the grand tour,
 and when they came back, they were starving!
 
We got out our bare buns...

 
And had a feast!
 
Tony and Nick decided they wanted to kayak.
 
Tony showed Nick how to get his kayak down the hill to the river...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
It didn't work quite as well as he hoped...
 
But soon, they both got in the kayaks and had a good time...
 
 
 
Then Tony got the bright idea to go paddle boarding...
 
 
We all shouted that he was losing his swim trunks...
 
 
And being the over achiever that he is...
 
 
But he did have success, both with his swim trunks and his attempt to paddle board!
 
 
Later, we all decided to take the boat out for the last spin of the day...
 
 
Mr. K helped Shirley get her life jacket on...and they were ready!
 
 
 
 Tony suggested Rick take the driver's seat...
 
 

 After all, he was confident in his step-brother's ability...
 
 
 
Seriously, my family and Mr.K's family are both water families!
 
 
Tony wasn't really nervous,
but Shirley?
 
 She was terrified!
 
We tried to comfort her...
 
 
 
Finally, Tony took her up front, away from the wind...
 
 
 
 
She finally calmed down, but I don't think she's going to be the water dog we hoped!
 
 
We had such a great day! 
 
We were sorry that Andy, Ashley and Locklan couldn't be there...
And Larissa, Mr.K's granddaughter,
 
But we'll be doing it again soon!
 
 
 
 

 
 
 

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Van Go?

Oh my goodness, what a blast!
 
Michelle, Ashley's mother hosted a CREATE ART party yesterday.
 
There were six of us there.
 
When we got there, Dina, the artist, had everything set up...
 
Easels, with blank canvasses  on the table,
 a water glass with two paint brushes (she called them Sonny and Cher)
Paints...she even covered most things with plastic (more on that later).
 
I don't know what I expected, but when I saw a blank canvas, my mind went blank!
 
I think I expected a paint-by-numbers kind of thing!
 
The painting in the center is what we were supposed to paint...
 
 
 
Just a sweet, pastoral scene...complete with a cabin!
 
Step one...sky and grass...here's Ashley's!
 
 
 
Step 2:  trees and some dead grass...
Here's mine in the lower right...
 
 
 
To be honest, my painting didn't start out as a masterpiece.
In fact, I'm not sure what that dark thing in the painting was supposed to be...
 
 
D
 
 
We kept painting away.  As the late Bob Ross would say, we added happy little trees...
 
Ashley and I were backed up against the windows. 
It was a tight fit...Dina couldn't see what we were doing...
 
So she ran out onto the deck to peek through the window...
 
 
 
She thought we were doing great!
 
 
 
I think that's when it all began to fall apart...
 
She forgot to tell us not to splash paint on the walls...
 
AND she did not cover the walls with plastic...
 
 
Some of us (who shall remain nameless) did...
all I can say about that is that she said Lestoil would get the paint off...
and I did.  ALL the paint... 
 
Some of us, like Michelle, Ashley's mom, really got into it...
 
 
 
After we were done...she told us to sign our name on it...
 
I did.  I signed my name...
 
 
 
 
And we all went out on the deck for our class picture...
 
 
and left them to dry while we helped clean up...
 
 
Of course, I thought mine was...
 
 
Interesting?
 
When I got home, I remembered I had an easel in the basement...
 
I set it up in the foyer...
 
 
I'm certainly not feeling it...

I'm thinking of hanging it on the wall in the powder room...

What do you think?