Monday, December 29, 2008

Lazy Morning

I can't seem to get motivated this morning. Maybe because we're still in Christmas vacation mode. I don't officially go back to work until the 5th. I do, however, have to venture into work this morning for an hour or so just to get the payroll wires done and the checks sent down to our Houston office. I'm having a hard time finding the motivation. We're all still in our pjs, I have yet to see if anyone can watch the kiddos for me (otherwise they're coming along), and for some reason I can't seem to get in the shower.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I {heart} Christmas

I {heart} Christmas, originally uploaded by yoursournotes.

It is my favorite time of the year and unfortunately it comes upon us as quickly as it goes. I'm sad it's over. I always am.

Just a few of the reasons why I love Christmas...
Mom's Christmas cookies
The smell of pine throughout the house
Our annual hayride to the tree farm to find the perfect tree
Late night hot chocolate sipping and present wrapping
The daily question "Is it Christmas yet?"
Our house decorated in white lights and candles
EJ and Olivia's stockings hung on the mantel
Our ever growing collection of locally made Christmas ornaments
Christmas music
The candlelight Christmas Eve service at our church
The excitement on my kids' faces
Our annual Christmas Eve party
Watching my kids open presents on Christmas morning
Christmas brunch at my in-laws complete with homemade scones and sweet bread.
Christmas dinner with my family complete with turkey and all of the "fixins" - there's no better meal than this.

There's no better time of year than this. My kids are already asking when Christmas will be here again.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Bad Blogger

I've been such a bad blogger lately. I guess just trying to squeeze too many things into not enough hours in the day. Between work and the kids, plus keeping up with my CT (creative team) requirements and now Christmas preparations, I'm just barely staying above water. And, that's without even mentioning the little tidbit of info that I left you with on my last post. While I'm very happy to be pregnant, the timing for the morning sickness and exhaustion is not ideal.

Speaking of the little tidbit, here's a site that tracks your pregnancy and also includes photos for the various stages of growth.

Right now, it looks more like a cross between an alien and a tad pole than it does a human. What is also crazy is that something so tiny can make you feel so badly. While I must say that I'm not feeling as sick as I did with the twins, I wasn't even sick with the twins this early! I think I was six weeks before I started feeling any type of morning sickness. This time around, it happened almost instantly. Hopefully it doesn't get any worse. I can handle where I am right now.

After getting the positive pregnancy test on the 7th, my OB had me come in for blood work the following day. Per my doctor, my numbers were "excellent". I had a repeat test done this past Monday and again, "excellent". So, I'm feeling good about things. My hcg doubling rate is really fast, which is also a very positive sign. And, my numbers are high. So high that they are actually going to bring me in next week sometime for an ultrasound to make sure there is just one in there. I'm feeling pretty confident that there is... but could you imagine? I certainly can't. I have been very much looking forward to enjoying not only a singleton baby, but a singleton pregnancy.

All is well at home. The kids are excited for Christmas and I think this is the first year that they really "get it". And by "get it", I mean, Santa and presents, etc. They're only three so the story of Jesus might be another year. Besides the fact that right now he's not even Jesus but Ejus. We have a nativity scene that they like to play with and "Baby Ejus" is forever missing. Olivia likes to snatch him away, along with the Three Wise Men's offering. They are the two items that she always takes and you'll find them hidden together, somewhere in the house. It's like Jesus has made off with the goods.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Early Christmas Present

A very early (surprise) Christmas present.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

"If you put a vitamin in the sand, it makes it new"

Quote of the day. A conversation with my son this morning after handing him his vitamin went something like this...

"Guess what, Mom?"
"If you put a vitamin in the sand, (now whispering) it makes it new."
"Wow, I didn't know this. How does it make it new?"
"You take your shovel, cover it up with sand, mix it around with water and when the sun dries it, vegatables will grow."

I never knew vitamins had such magic powers. Maybe I should try planting Flintstone vitamins in the garden this summer instead of seeds.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

No Turkey Trotting

No Turkey Trotting for me this morning. I'm so disappointed. Our local YMCA hosts an annual 5 or 10k Turkey Trot race every Thanksgiving. We ran it last year and I was looking forward to running it again this year.

And the worst part? No one wanted to do it this year but me. Gene is out of shape and hasn't done anything remotely related to exercise since the triathlon in August. So, he didn't want to do it. My parents, who were going to walk it, had decided last night not to do it. Well, I should say that my Dad didn't want to do it and my Mom wasn't doing it without him. So, I worked my magic on them all and as of last night had Gene talked into it. We were going to take the kids in the jogging stroller (which might have been the last year to do so since they're getting so big).

Before dinner last night I took a Mucinex D because I was so congested that my teeth actually hurt. I'm not a fan of cold medicine and never take it, ever. But, I was desperate last night as I wanted to run in the race today and knew I wouldn't be able to do so with the pressure in my sinuses. So, I took one. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it doesn't have the normal side effects that I typically experience with cold medicine. No crazy fast heartbeat, no dizziness or foggy head, etc. I was happy. It seemed to be helping with the pressure too so I was feeling good about being able to run today.

Unfortunately, one side effect showed its ugly face. Insomnia. I was up at 12:30, 1:45, 2:30, 3:45 and 4:30. Each time I awoke, I also needed to blow my nose, which meant getting out of bed. It was awful. So, at 6:30 when Gene woke me up to get ready for the race, I just couldn't do it. I was still congested (though not as bad) but I was/ am exhausted. Then, the phone rings at 7:30 and it's my Mom saying that they decided to go and would meet us there. How awful do you think I felt? I talked everyone into going and then I'm the one who cancels. My Mom told me not to feel bad because my Dad was just doing it out of guilt and was happy I cancelled. But, I still felt bad.

So, here it is, 15 minutes since the start of the race, and it's a gorgeous morning. Even though it's freezing, the sun is out and it's the perfect morning for a run. Ugh. I know I wouldn't enjoy it this morning as I still can't breathe. But, I can't help but wish I was there. I guess I just need to get over it and enjoy the day.

Once the weather gets colder and we turn the heat on, I suffer all winter with my sinuses. It's awful. And, it's ever since we moved into this new house with its forced hot air heat. It dries me out and all of the saline spray in the world doesn't seem to help. I told Gene I wanted to whole house humidifier for Christmas. That's how bad it is.

But, it's Thanksgiving and I have a lot to be thankful for. First, I have a house that has heat. And, I'm watching the Thanksgiving Day parade with my two beautiful children. Life is good, even with sinus congestion.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Five Kernels of Corn

My birthday was in October and one of the items on my birthday wish list was a publication called Seeing the Everyday. Thankfully, my Mom gifted me with a subscription and I've been in awe ever since. To call it a magazine would almost be an insult as it's nothing short of a work of art.

First of all, it's beautiful. The pages are printed on thick paper with a matte finish. The photography is excellent, stories are well written and often tear jerking, and the layout/design of the pages is again, artful. And the best part? It is completely 100% ad free. How many magazines can say that?

Most noteworthy is its premise: "Finding poetry in the prosaic". Every story, photograph, drawing made by a five year old, all point to the same thing. Life is about those everyday moments. The little moments that happen between the four walls of our homes, with our family, are the ones that mean the most and have the most impact. This magazine reminds us to slow down even though we live in a world that is telling us to do more, spend more, have more and be more. It's refreshing to say the least.

So, where exactly am I going with the "Five Kernels of Corn" title?

In the latest edition of Seeing the Everyday is a story written by a mother telling of her Thanksgiving tradition. Every Thanksgiving, this mother places five kernels of corn at each place setting at her table. The five kernels of corn represent the daily ration given to the Pilgrims during their first winter in America. Before dinner, the mother tells the story of the five kernels and the Pilgrims' first winter. Then, a jar is passed around the table and every person drops their kernels into the jar, one by one, and tells of something for which they are thankful.

Wow. Can you imagine a daily ration of five kernels of corn? I will fully admit that while I understand the meaning of Thanksgiving, I guess I've never taken the time to fully appreciate it. It makes our failing markets and economy seem minor at the moment.

I love this tradition and will be implementing in our house. And, I love this publication for all that it is and so many things that it is not.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Out for Publication

I'm so excited to say that I have a layout being published in the November issue of Digital Artist Magazine. And, I had one in their October issue as well! Being fairly new to digital scrapbooking, I am so very honored and excited to be published in such a well respected and quality publication.

Speaking of layouts, here are a few recent ones...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's Official

I'm sick. Full blown. Chills. Aches. Runny nose. Congestion. Scratchy throat. You name it. I've got it. All except for a fever, which I swore I had as well because of how awful I feel. However, no fever. I guess that's good. Although I don't know that I could feel much worse. So, despite my best efforts in halting the enemy, it won and has taken over.

I was tossing and turning and sniffling and clearly my terribly scratchy throat until 2 am last night when I decided to give up and get up. I went downstairs, turned on the fire, had a bowl of cereal and curled up on the couch. Next thing I know it's 5:15 a.m. and I'm still on the couch. So, I make my way back upstairs, feeling worse than before, and knowing that I've only got another two hours max before the kids are up. Thankfully, they slept until 8 am but I was up an hour before because Gene was getting ready for work. I so badly wanted to ask him to stay home so that he could take care of the kids today, but I didn't.

So, I got up and was never so happy to see that it was raining outside. Thankfully, this means I have a built in excuse as to why we can't go outside to play today. Nice. I really don't think I could've handled much more than I've got going on today... which is not much of anything. I mustered up enough energy to make oatmeal this morning and I had two big bowls. I've drank two cups of tea with honey and taken my vitamins, Nasonex, and am hoping this bug is as short lived for me as it was for EJ.

The kids have been so good today. Usually, they are itching for things to do and I'm constantly involved in puzzles, games, playdough, etc. Today, they've watch a lot more TV than I usually allow, but it's the best I can do. I usually take colds in stride and they don't get me down much but this one is a douzy.

Here's hoping my long list of cold remedies will do the trick.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


We spent the day in Baltimore yesterday. A treat from the in-laws. They wanted to take the kids to The National Aquarium, which was fabulous by the way. I hadn't been there in years so it was nice to see it again.

Unfortunately, the day started off very early (12:45 am) and very poorly. EJ caught a bug and was up several times during the course of the night with a variety of requests... his nose blown, a drink, some love from Mama, etc. Then, was up again at 6 am crying that he was sick. He had a fever. Ugh.

The tickets had been purchased and were non-refundable. The date had been set for months as it was one of the few days that seemed to work for four busy adults. His fever was not terribly high (~100) so we decided to load him up with Motrin, bring extra doses, along with the thermometer, and give it a go. I was prepared for a very trying day full of sickness induced crankiness.

EJ called my bluff and was quite the trooper. Despite being sick, there was no crankiness (no more than normal anyway) and he loved the aquarium. His fever even stayed away until we got home last evening, just in time for an early bedtime and a Motrin dose.

Olivia, my girl with the super strong immune system who is rarely sick, had a wonderful day as well, with not a sniffle in sight. Not only does she have a super strong immune system, she also has a super strong independent streak. She is my tester and in the very crowded, sometimes dark aquarium, was difficult to keep in my sights. She is the kid who you tell to walk with you, and she'll be sure to walk five steps ahead. I love her independence and I think it will take her far... someday. Just not now.

It was an eleven hour day yesterday so we were all tired when we got home. Wednesday is my day to work but had decided last night (after EJ's fever made a another appearance) that I would stay home today so that he could catch up on his sleep. So, we all took a sick day. He seems to be feeling better and the fever is gone. However, I think he's passed it to me as I'm getting that familiar scratchy throat that usually preceeds a cold. I'm loading up on vitimins and green tea with the hope that I stop it in its tracks. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Life Is Good

It's Friday, the sun is shining, it's going to be 70+ degrees today, and I filled up my gas tank this morning for UNDER $30. Life is good.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Make Your Voice Count

I did! And waited in line two hours to do so. So much for going late morning thinking I would beat the "going to work" crowd and the lunch crowd. Plus, it seems there are many, many more A-L voters than there are M-Z voters. Or, the volunteers at the A-L table were much slower at processing voters and the M-Z volunteers. Either way, I was wishing today that my last name fell in the M-Z category as I was definitely in the slow line.

Now onto the next big task of the day... having the in-laws over for an Election Day dinner. Really, it's just dinner as I'm not quite sure what an election day dinner would consist of other than maybe insisting the TV or radio remain on at all times.

I am sure it will be a very intersting evening.

Monday, November 3, 2008

My latest dilemma...

ur um... obsession. Yes, obsession would probably be a much better word to describe it.

I have this good (bad??) habit of researching things to death. I guess it can be viewed as a good thing given that I rarely jump into anything uninformed or without a plan. However, the countless hours spent researching and basically obsessing over a decision is time that could probably be well spent doing something/anything else. My overzealousness is actually a joke between some of my friends. And, it seems to happen with just about anything.

Perfect example was when we bought our new home. It had a blank slate of a yard and I was therefore starting from scratch with all of the landscaping. I spent countless hours scanning the internet for garden plans (which, by the way, Better Homes and Gardens has them for free), landscaping photos, message boards, etc. You name it, I was there. My entire summer of 2007 was spent focused on our yard. Every shrub, tree, and flower was carefully researched, thought out and planned. And, this was only the front yard! :)

Same thing happened when the twins turned three in the spring. They were getting their own rooms and big kid beds. Several months prior, I was scanning design blogs, catalogs, magazines, flickr sites, etc. for design ideas for their rooms. Same can be said for their birthday cakes.

I'm always happy that I've spent the time and am usually always happy with my decisions/results. But, I wonder, does everyone do this? While I won't say that I'm a Type A personality (because I can be quite lazy), I guess certain parts of me could be labeled as such.

So, onto my latest obsession.

My Latest Obsession by tlheyman

A dSLR camera. I've wanted one for over a year now and after coming into some birthday money, I think I'd like to purchase one. I typically reserve said birthday money to revamp my fall/winter wardrobe. But, I do have plenty of clothes to get me through the next two seasons and while adding to my wardrobe has always been something I thoroughly enjoy, I think that activity has been trumped by a new camera.

So, last week my new obsession began. I've read just about every review I can get my hands on and been to several stores to compare how the different cameras "feel" in my hands (just as the magazines tell you to do). Problem is, I can't decide. One review tells you one thing, one tells you another. One camera has several features that the others do not but is sorely lacking in others, etc. I need to just pick one. But, when I'm dropping that kind of money, I want to be happy with my choice. I don't want to buy something to only find out later that I wished I had bought another, or from a different store because I would've saved 30%.

Then, there is the dilemma of new versus used. Should I spend half the money of a new camera on a used one to learn how to use an SLR, decide what features I like, and then upgrade once I know what I'm doing and what I want. Or, spend the money on a good one now so that I don't need to upgrade for another 5+ years.

Really, what I should do is put myself out of my misery, hand someone my money, send them into the camera shop and tell them to buy a camera. Bottom line is that I'll probably be happy with any of the SLRs out there. Coming from a point and shoot, I'm going to be impressed with anything. I just need to make a decision before I find a new pair of black boots and blow half of my money on them.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Busy but relaxing weekend. Can those two things go together when describing your weekend? Well, that was mine. Let's see if I can sum it up in three photos.

All Hallow's Eve

Indian Summer

Preparing for winter

I love it when my weekends seem to go on and on and on. This was one of them. Usually, a busy weekend equals a "gone in the blink of an eye" weekend but such was not the case this time, thankfully. I'm assuming adding that extra hour in there with the end of daylight savings time had something to do with it. But, long gone are the days when that means an extra hour of sleep. I don't know about anyone else, but my kids just wake up an hour earlier. No extra sleep in this house.

Yesterday was such a beautiful day. I don't think that one day in the mid seventies counts as an Indian Summer so you can call it what you will. I will call it Heaven. We spent the entire day outside and tackled several projects. One project on the list was my vegetable garden that Gene finished for me this week. The garden looks great. Unfortuantely, the soil is another story and first on our to do list for the weekend. Gene's parents live on a property with a barn and a lot of acreage. They lease out the land to a local farmer and several years ago had also leased out the barn. Therefore, there is a lot of high grade "fertilizer" remaining in the barn from its previous tenants. So, we spent the morning loading up the "fertilizer" or as my kids call it, "gnore". Luckily, I had the job of keeping track of the kids running around the barn and yard while Gene took care of the "gnore".

While chasing after the kids, I must have said at least three times (all while deeply inhaling the warm morning air), "what a beautiful day". The fall colors, warm sun, and fresh air was so rejuvenating. I really, really dislike winter. So, to have a day like Saturday, was as I said, Heaven. After leaving Gene's parents, we hit the local garden center for pete moss and walked out with a blue spruce, two holly bushes and a blueberry muffin viburnum for $31. I love it when you stumble upon the 75% off, end of season sales. Only downside is this added to the to do list for the weekend because all of these purchases had to be planted.

Saturday night we roasted hotdogs and made smores over a fire in the backyard. It was the perfect way to end a great day. I used to love those kind of days... when the only time you stepped foot in your house was to use the bathroom. Saturday was one of those days. We walked outside at 9:30 am and didn't walk back in until 8:30 pm.

Needless to say, you can understand my disappointment when I opened the door this morning to let the dog out and was hit in the face with what was COLD air. Huh?? I had the windows wide open all day yesterday. I was going to repeat today. My weekend worth of warmth. Where did it go? Maybe it was showing up late today? Was confused by the loss of daylight savings time? I waited and waited, but it never showed. I even dressed a little too lightly for my run today thinking that I could somehow convince myself that it was warmer than it was. Fact? I froze my arse off and it wasn't just chilly, it was downright cold! I passed several runners who had winter hats on, in addition to warm clothes. Guess they're past the denial phase. I'm still waiting.

However, despite the cold, we finished all of our projects. The garden soil is tilled and looks awesome, our new trees and shrubs are planted, the ridiculous amount of bird seed my husband bought has been mixed and put into the feeders, the jack-o-lanterns have been tossed, the groceries for week have been bought, and I think I'm now ready to call it a night.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

No Recess Today.

No Recess Today., originally uploaded by BamaWester.

It's a rainy fall day. Rainy is not a word that we've used much in the last few months to describe the weather. The rain is a welcomed change since we so desparately need it. However, to say it's not cramping our Saturday style would be a lie.

My kids love the outdoors and we spend a considerable amount of time in it. EJ, at least three times after waking this morning, looked out the door and said, "Mom! It looks like it stopped raining. I think we can go outside now." Only to have me confirm that, in fact, it is still raining buckets.

No recess today. However, nothing says that recess has to be outdoors. In the process of creating indoor recess, I've ignored several of my regular house rules today. We've watched Bambi, Dumbo and are now onto The Little Mermaid. We've (well they've) jumped on beds, crawled under laundry baskets pretending to be caged birds, built bridges out of pillows and furniture cushions, and ate M&Ms and peanuts at 11 o'clock this morning.

There's something refreshing and also cozy about being stuck indoors all day. Enjoying the fire and a fresh cup of hot coffee while watching my kids camped out on the floor with pillows and blankets, makes me smile. Gene is away this weekend so it's just the three of us, enjoying indoor recess.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Beautiful Fall Day Part 2

Some of my favorite photos from yesterday.

Beautiful Fall Day

Flickr IMG_3171 copy, originally uploaded by tlheyman.

I took the kids to the lake for a little photo shoot yesterday and it was such a beautiful fall day! Remembering from previous years that the maples along the lake turn the most gorgeous color in fall, it had been on my list of things to do. Had we waited much longer, we would've missed it this year, as many of the trees had already lost half of their leaves. BUT, it didn' t make it any less beautiful! Wow!

The sunlight yesterday on all of those gorgeous fall colors was breathtaking. And, the sunlight on my children dressed in their matching fall colors was just as breathtaking. I'm certainly no photographer (although my wish is to become one) but I'm really proud of how the photos came out. Usually, I'll get one or two shots out of a boatload of photos, that are worthly of framing. Yesterday, while I took over 100 photos, half to three quarters are worthy of framing. Obviously, I'll have to narrow the list down a bit.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

A Night... delicious.

2008-05-f09-f14-xgm, originally uploaded by

Friends, sushi, and wine. I couldn't dream up a more perfect way to spend my 35th birthday. I ate too much sushi, drank too much wine, and stayed out too late. Indulgences. Indulgences saved for special occasions. Indulgences that today left me feeling, shall we say, another year older.

Life's indulgences. Deserved and needed, at least on occasion. One such indulgence, however, left its mark in a totally diffierent way today. Quality time with some dear, life long friends. One of life's sweetest indulgences. An indulgence that we never do enough of and the one that today, left me feeling loved and blessed.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A Day... all mine.

monday morning, originally uploaded by simply photo.

So, it's my 35th birthday today. And as part of my celebration on this day, I did something that I never do. I took the day off from work AND took the kids to preschool. I get the ENTIRE day to myself. What to do?? So many options and just not enough hours to enjoy them all.

My initial plan was to sleep in. Something that doesn't happen often with two three year olds residing with you. I made arrangements with Gene for him to take the tots to school, something that he never does and is usually part of my morning routine, on the three days that I work each week. Well, I had also decided that I wanted to see them all before they walked out the door for the day, so I asked Gene to wake me up before they left so that I could say goodbye (but totally planning to fall right back to sleep and stay that way for at least another hour or two or three). Good plan. However, execution of plan was a bit different.

At 6:45, Gene brought me coffee in bed (nice.) and then asked the kids to come in and wish me a happy birthday. Olivia came running in with big hugs and kisses and happy birthday wishes. EJ cried outside of the door, telling Daddy he wanted to go back downstairs to watch the Wiggles and drink his OJ instead. Can't blame him, I guess. Problem was, not only was Daddy not yet dressed for work, he hadn't even showered. So, as he got ready for work, I sat on my bed with an initially unhappy EJ, wrestled with the pretty little girl white gloves that Olivia insisted she wear before leaving the house, and watched Playhouse Disney. I quietly mentioned to Gene that "this" wasn't exactly what I had in mind this morning.

But soon, EJ's mood improved and he started asking me questions about my birthday. How many years was I? How do I show that number(on my fingers, of course)? Olivia asking me to hold her hand while she's laying next to me, leaning over every so often to say "I love you, too". -- she always adds the "too" on the end, even if you haven't said it first. Maybe she's reminding me that I should have said it first. As much as my day did not come close to starting out as I had planned, I couldn't have asked for a better start. It was sweet start. It was what being a Mom is all about.

I still got to stay in bed after they all left me this morning. I tried with everything I had to fall back to sleep. I'm exhausted this morning. I stayed up late last night, with the intention and plan of sleeping in. However, as I laid in bed this morning, in my oddly quiet house, the excitement of having the day to myself overwhelmed the thoughts in my brain and there was no falling back to sleep. Then, a must do to do list popped into my head. Crap. I have to email the receptionist at work to let her know I won't be in. I need to turn my out of office assistant on. I need to renew the library books that are now late. I need to check my email to see if the Craigslist seller of the very cool dining room chairs got back to me. So, I grab the laptop and tick them off one by one. Done. Try again to fall asleep. Decide instead that I need to get up and call the Craiglist seller who never emailed me back. Done.

It's now 9:45 and I've made a fresh pot of coffee. I've got new music downloading to my iPod. I don't have the radio, tv, or anything else that might make noise, on. I hear the hum of my laptop and my dog, who is laying at my feet, breathing. It's a gorgeous day. The sun is shining. Time for a shower, then shopping for a new outfit for tonight, then maybe a Starbucks coffee. Tonight, we have reservations at a b&b, the kids are staying over at Oma's and Grandpa's, and 7 pm dinner reservations for sushi with 15 of my dear friends.

life is good.

Happy Birthday to Me....

I hope the next 35 will be as good as the first.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

For The Love of Fall

As I mentioned in the previous post, we just took our annual fall trip to Prime Hook Beach. We usually travel there four times a year, with the last trip typically being in October. I'm a summer person. Always have been and always will be. So for me, the "fall trip" is really kind of a let down. It's never warm enough to swim or enjoy the usual summertime fun that is supposed to be had at the beach. To me, fall is always a reminder of what is to come... my least favorite season.

This year, however, I've turned a new leaf. A more optimistic one. I'm trying to appreciate fall for what it is... a beautiful season. I mean, really, what is not to love? The colors? The crisp air? The fall harvest of warm your belly foods? So Fall, I've decided to give you a chance. And, you know what?? I actually like you... a lot. We probably had the best "fall" trip to Prime Hook yet. And it was all because I embraced you.

Saturday was spent on the beach collecting shells, building sand castles, and just enjoying the weather... which was gorgeous, by the way. Saturday night we had a fire on the beach. Perfect weather, no bugs and my hats off to the guys for building one kick arse fire. We had mulled cider, bananas baked with chocolate chips and marshallows on the fire, and smores. It was fantastic. Even more fantastic was when everyone went inside to put the kiddos to bed and Gene told me to stay outside and enjoy the fire. There I sat, the only person on this long stretch of beach. Warm fire crackling in front of me, the surf breaking behind me, crisp cool air, water lit by the moonlight, and a good beer in hand... it doesn't get much better than that. If I could bottle all of that up, it would sell for a premium.

I love you, Fall.