Splashing Into Summer!!

     One nice thing is that the condo where my mom used to live has a pool.  We took advantage of that recently in the 95 degree weather and we all had a good time. 
     Hope you are managing to stay cool!!!

Going for the One Handed Splashball Catch
Even at the ages of 12 and 14...there's a lot of "Mom Watch This"
Two Out of Three...Looking at Me

No Diving...So He Faked a Dive and Jumped


Splishin' and a Splashin'

This cracks me up!!

Now they got it!! 




Flashback Friday: "Hot" Corduroy Edition

     Came across some random pictures in my mom's stuff.  Pretend it's Christmas in June/July!!??  I believe I was 6 1/2 years old and my brother, Mike was 5!!  I think my mom made me that lovely corduroy vest and matching skirt!!  My brother's tie -- groovy, right!?


Stay cool on this non-corduroy hot hot day!!!!!


Freebies 101

     Welcome to yet another edition of Freebies 101.  I scored some pretty good freebies the last few weeks which you can check out below.  Virtually all of my tips on these freebies were from www.hip2save.com.   It's usually a matter of filling out your name and address and often "liking" different products on Facebook.  
     This month, even my "Lucky" dog got a freebie sample of trail mix.  I also look forward to trying out that Febreze car freshener!
      I already have another post started with another round of Freebies -- perhaps (even) more exciting than this group!  Have any of you signed up for any freebies lately or just found a great deal??  I'd love to know!!


Soccer Banquet

     At the conclusion of Megan's first year of playing high school soccer, we learned there would be a banquet for all of the high school players at a nearby country club.   At $20 per family member (the boosters paid for the players), we opted to leave Jacob and Kristin at home (which actually turned into my friend, Lisa, taking them to the movies).
     The club is very nice and a far cry from the more typical banquets I am used to which are sometimes at school.  The players all sat together and my husband and I opted to sit by our next door neighbor whose daughter plays Varsity.  George had traveled all day from AZ to make it back in time for the banquet. 
     After a really good dinner, each coach spoke about their team, their record, their players and then there was a slide show of the games and the girls which a special focus on the senior players who were graduating.  We had an excellent freshman team.  However, as it  often goes in high school sports, our goalie was bumped up to help JV after their goalie was injured.  Coupled with some other injuries and movement of players, the freshman ended up short handed in some of their games.  It was a bit frustrating knowing we woulda, coulda, shoulda had all our players.  I would tell you our record, but I really don't know... 
     The coach also made mention of the nickname he gave M, which was "Woody" -- in part because there are two Megan's on the team, our last name, and in light of her Disney trip during the soccer season!  Interesting, huh?  (After the banquet, the coach apologized to my husband for Megan's nickname.  Snicker, snicker!  Men!)
     Coach Matt has an excellent British acccent and it was a pleasure to hear him coaching from the sidelines all season.  Even when he was "yelling" at his players, it sounded quite heavenly!!  He could often be heard saying things like (get your British accent on), "Unlucky Woody!"  "Good idea Woody", "You've Got Time, Woody", etc.   Rumor has it that the coach will be hosting some kind of swim party this summer for the team.  We are hoping he will follow the girls as they move up to JV next year.
     After the (3 hour) banquet, the girls posed for pictures out by the lake.  It was a beautiful night and a great sunset.  It was then that we learned that Coach Matt had been married at the club five years before and posed for pictures in the same location.  Awwwww!
     We look forward to watching the team grow and more soccer this Fall and high school soccer again in Spring 2013!!!  Good season, Megan!!!

Valerie, Megan, Courtney, Julie and Vanessa


And Then They Were 12!!!!!

     As I indicated in my Flashback Friday last week it was Jacob and Kristin's 12th Birthday!!  For the most part, I have done kid parties until the kids were age 10 and then I told them they can have 13th and 16th birthday parties...and then I'm out for the big parties!  When they were younger, I used to throw some pretty good parties.  I love party planning with a theme and coming up with favors, games and foods that fall into that theme.  Someday, I will have to tell you about some of those parties and Megan's 13th birthday party (which I am still recovering from)!!  Unfortunately, they were all before I started this blog.
     With my family being pretty small and most of George's family living out of state, we don't often have much of a family celebration, especially now with the kids being older.  That said, I know for sure Jacob and Kristin's birthday was very low key last year since my mom living with us made it difficult to make any great plans.  With their birthday being on a Friday this year, it was crying for some kind of celebration!  After consulting with them, we concluded that I would take Kristin and two friends for manicures and pedicures and then to the mall to browse around.  She's all about "beauty and fashion" these days don't ya know!!??
     My husband took the day off work and took Jacob and two friends for 9 holes of golf.  Later, we would all meet up for a pizza dinner at Buddy's and FINALLY.....ice cream at Dairy Queen!! 
     The girls got some very nice manicures and pedicures.  I just had them do polish only so as not to risk and creepy infections or anything like that.  At the mall, we shopped for bargains.  We went to Nordstroms, Pink, Aeropostale, 21 Forever and Bath and Body Works.  I got Kristin and her two friends each a shirt from Aeropostale, two necklaces and some barrettes from 21 Forever, and some body spray/perfume from Bath and Body Works along with some lip gloss.  It was fun to let them browse around although we ended up in a bit of time crunch since we had to allow time to meet the boys for dinner. 
     The boys were sooo cute when we got to the restaurant.  They all had hats on with their "shades" on top of their hats and each was a bit "sun kissed".  I wish I had a picture of it, but my camera battery died and getting them to re-pose is not something most boys are into.  I had also asked my husband to take pics on the golf course, but apparently he had his hands full with his "other duties".  LOL!  It was also fun to watch the boys and the girls laughing and "showing off" in front of each other -- remember when you were 12!!??. 
     We were busy from about 1-8 pm and the kids all seemed to have fun.  That night, J and K thanked us over and over for their "best birthday ever"!!!  They deserved a day all about them -- they are great fun-loving kids and I'm lucky to have them in my life!!!
Oh my gosh, you got me Salon Express...!!??  And you got me a football iPod Touch case!!!
Love ya brother -- Love ya back 'sis!!
Now those are some nail colors!!
Is this gonna be clothes???

 Kristin Got The Toms She Wanted...with Bling!
Jacob Got His Fishing Pole and Has Been Practicing His Casting!

Choosing colors -- the hardest part of the manicure!!
(Kristin, Kaleigh and Isabella)

This is a few days later...the pedicure (with flowers!)

The Golf Dudes
Connor, Jacob and Aiden


Flashback Friday: Birthday Edition

     Twelve years ago today Jacob and Kristin came into the world!!  It was an emotional day filled with much anticipation and love.  We are out celebrating with them today, and I will be back with the details.
Love You Both!!!
Happy Birthday 12th Birthday J and K!!!!!!
Love, Mom

Staged Photos Never Work...
Sure, We Coulda Taken Pics All Day 'Til We Got It Right,
But Jacob Is Not Big on Photo Sessions...and it's his Birthday!!!!!


Easy Summer Salad

     Recently Kerri at The Pleasures of My Life posted about this salad she had seen in a magazine.  Although she didn't have the exact quantities, she listed the the ingredients and put them into a yummy BLT Pasta Salad.
     With the 95 degree humid weather here in Michigan, it was time to try it!!  I went with a simple leaf lettuce so as not to scare the kids away with the arugula, which apparently looks too healthy for them!!
     I did not have any red onion and somehow ran out of my big container of EVOO so I substituted with Garlic Expressions salad dressing instead.  I shaved some fresh Parmesan cheese on top.  It was a perfect summer meal!!  I will definitely be making this a lot this summer.  As you can see, you can improvise on this as you like.  I would never have thought of a BLT pasta -- guess that's why you've never seen me on the Food Network!! 
     Thanks for the idea, Kerri!!

What I Used:
Rigatoni, Leaf Lettuce, Grape Tomatos, Bacon, Salt and Pepper and
Garlic Expressions dressing
 (or another oil based salad dressing)
BLT Pasta Salad


Driver in Training...Megan!

     On Monday Megan started Driver's Ed classes which she is taking at her high school from 8-10 am for the next two and a half weeks.  She has scheduled her first "driving" session for next Tuesday.  Lordy Lordy is this really happening!? 
     You realize this means me and/or my husband will be putting in some driving time with her starting this summer...perhaps sooner than I think.  The good news is, she will not be 16 until September 2013 so we have plenty of time to "practice".  I hate to think of driving as something you "practice", but it kind of is. 
     She is very responsible, so I am confident she will take that responsibility to the road as she learns to drive!!  Meanwhile, I will be studying my "Guide for Parents" which hopefully says something about "how not to panic when they "accidentally" go through a red light"!? 
     Oh, and for the record, so far the girls have called their two hour ($250) class "boring"!!!!!  (Not exactly the word I was looking for!  Pay attention anyways girls...soon you'll be out on the open road!!!) 

No Headphones on the Open Road Girlfriend!!


(Cue the Music)....Ya Say It {Was} My Birthday!?

     Well, last Wednesday I celebrated yet another birthday...  Some would say it would be their "last" birthday as it ended in a "9".  I, however, don't really want to have a "last" birthday so I will keep celebrating!! 
     The Sunday before my birthday, the kids had surprised me with balloons and decorations in the house when we arrived home from a neighborhood graduation party.  My husband was going to be in Phoenix for business on my birthday so we had a small family celebration on Sunday.
     On Wednesday my girlfriend, Lisa, and I had plans for my favorite salad for lunch and then to hang out after that.  We ended up going to Home Goods for about three hours which is something I never seem to get a chance to do.  (Do we know how to party, or what!!?)  She is one of those friends who is always like "just get it"....  We did end up with a couple of carts full of stuff...  Lisa is one of Kristin's friend's moms and we have become good friends.  She crazy decorated her house for my birthday with a giant sign on her garage and then this tropical spread in her kitchen.  I guess the kids did a lot of it while I slept in on my birthday.  She also had dropped off a chai tea and bagels for us in the morning. 
     The more I think about it, girlfriends might be better than husbands!!  Cheers !!!

A Morning Birthday Welcome from My Kids

 My Birthday Table...Complete with Flowered Throne...

 Birthday Flowers Sent from My BFF Nancy!!

Lisa Found Me This Purse, Which I Love!

 A Wireless Keyboard For My iPad


Texted This Pic to My Husband to Try to Make Him Jealous
(Unfortunately he knew it was only Lisa's husband -- and no I didn't drink the tequila!!)