She’s a feisty one

Just another trip to the “wahluh,” which Ri has begun to call “Marco Polo” because of the game the siblings like to play.
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Weather Heat Advisory: 105

Thirty minutes filling balloons for 5 minutes of explosive fun and wet relief.

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Winding around

I should never complain. I’ve been blessed with three beautiful babies of my own and gifted two more through marriage. Their early morning rousing, replete with whispers heard quite clearly in the once quite dawn, their giggles and the uncontrolled pangs of laughter wake me from my sleep. The youngest, still a nursling,  babbles incessantly lately – even when resting she’s chattering.

But as the second full month of my vacation from formal teaching begins, I’m feeling worn down.  My youngest son, just shy of five, rattles off questions like a quiz show host.   Chi wondered at my ability to answer even the most random of interrogation.  Truthfully, I’m getting pretty good at guessing.  Heaven help my kids if ever they’re called upon to answer some trivia and all they’ve recalled is my reply!

They’re feeling quite cooped up despite daily outings to parks, the libraries, and scenic spots I’ve surveyed for photographic potential. If indoors – whether a store or home – the bickering begins without fail. Tired of siblings, they crave time alone or with the few neighborhood friends they’ve made. Squabbles break out frequently amongst the four.

My nerves are wound up tightly. It’s not easy and relief is short. I wonder if they’ll remember their summer fondly. Will they treasure the moments of peace, of adventure? Will we all be grateful for the school year or miss the freedom of our break? I must unwind, pause to relish in these brief childhoods before independence.


Simple pizza made by us for us

Container of Pillsbury pizza dough
Can of diced tomatoes with garlic and onion
Jar of marinara sauce
Peperoni slices
Shredded mozzarella cheese or Italian cheese blend

We’ve been watching a lot of Food Network at our house lately and it’s spawned a “make your own” frenzy that is limited only by imagination and finances.

Since pizza is one of the kids’ favorite meals, we decided to try our hands at making one at home.

To make: using the dough at room temperature, spread out over a pizza stone (preferred) or a foil covered baking sheet.

Warning: the dough sticks to the foil instantly if you don’t sprinkle a little flour on before contact is made.

Next, we added our diced tomatoes (optional, but so tasty). A first row of pepperoni for my meat lovers was followed by the marinara sauce, which was spooned and spread all over the pizza dough (no big crust eaters here).

A generous heap of shredded cheese blankets the marinara and then the second row of pepperoni is added.

The dough instructions indicated our oven temperature (and also recommended a pre-bake of the crust for extra crispiness that was very necessary for the heavy load of toppings). We baked beyond the recommended 20 minutes and crisped our pepperoni.

Allow to cool before serving, or risk losing the entire layer of skin on the roof of your mouth!

Next time, we’re going to add some veggies and ham into the topping list.

Tee Pee’d at the waterfront

The open shoreline at Leesylvania beckoned her. Gentle waves teased the sands as Chi busied herself gathering beach wood for an impromptu architectural build. She started with a simple see saw – – a log balanced on a stone to teeter her and her brother up and down.

Then, she decided a more intricate construct was necessary, and she set about building a beach teepee.

Those logs weighed quite a bit and rather than assistance, she thwarted little brother interference.

Considering she had only the sand to hold each log in place, the resulting structure was pretty sound. And it looked amazing overlooking the water.

Heat break for playground monkies

The sky looked a little cloudy Sunday. The sun, temporarily hidden behind plush clouds, wasn’t blazing down upon our little pseudo-suburbia with the ferocity of the last few weeks. Could we finally dare to venture outside to a park for some much needed energy release? Well, yes, if we avoided the heat-reflecting metal slide or the incubating rubber play things formerly known as tires. My kids, however, are very brave souls. They don’t mind a little heat on the bum if it’s a byproduct of their playtime fun. And fun is exactly what they had.

It seems that despite being cooped up indoors for much of the summer’s daylight hours, they’ve not lost their gusto or their agility. (And they like to show off for the camera, who knew?)

Where was Ya in all this show? In the sandbox playing with his monster truck – which seems to be the next big toy obsession.

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