Weekend Update

I know it’s only Saturday night, but I’m in the mood for a weekend update. :)

I came home from school Friday afternoon and found that Eve had decorated for Halloween. It made me SUPER happy to see the ghosties on the tree when came down our street. 🧡🖤

This baby tree is doing a great job holding up the bats and ghosties.

The porch lights were one.

When she started decorating the dog I knew it was time for a new activity. :)

I spent today cleaning the windows, cleaning the kitchen, and making two apple pies (one for the freezer), all while listening to an audio book. Then we ended the day with pizza delivery and a Zoom “book tour” with Rick Riordan. It was a lot of fun! Our book tour ticket included an autographed book and Camp Half Blood baseball cap, both of which are still in the mail. We had fun with the Zoom event though. We also got a hint at his next book series. :)

Hello Uncle Rick!

This platter has been on the counter all week and it was just calling for a pie! So I made one. :)

Tomorrow I’ll have to go grocery shopping and do some school work, but today I thoroughly enjoyed my Saturday activities.

Beautiful

Eve has been doing a ton of drawing these days. She even saved up all her money and bought herself a sweet drawing tablet. Recently we were talking about time lapse videos (or “speedpaint” in YouTube terms) and I showed her a tool to make them. Today she made one and posted it on YouTube. I LOVE it!!  She is such a creative thinker. She gave me permission to share it here as well. 💗🧡💛💚💙💜 Enjoy!

(sound on)

Stuff.

  • Huxley is finally heartworm free!!
  • I am so tired these days.
  • Can it please, please, PLEASE be November so we can get 45 out of office! My brain can’t handle it.
  • Someone held a wedding at the Woodstock Inn and no one wore masks! C’mon people! My guess is that it’s an out-of-town couple who came to safe Vermont for a nice normal wedding. 😡
  • 😡 is my most frequently used emoji these days.
  • It turns out it’s really hard to get a Covid test if you are asymptomatic.
  • I need to step away. Sigh.

Garden news

We have been busy with the gardens this summer. Back in April we planted some Hostas and a rose bush, all donated by kind friends. In May we added some Morning Glories to the garden. The goal was that the Morning Glories would fill in the gaps between the Hostas, but instead they took over the garden!

The Hostas got pretty buried and didn’t do much growing. I have faith they grew roots though and will grow bigger next summer!  We even got three roses on the tiny new rose bush! I was shocked and thrilled. :)

Last weekend Eve and I decided to add a tree to the collection. The oak tree that the landscapers planted years ago died the first year and we have been thinking about a replacement ever since. Eve started asking for a cherry tree, and I love cherry trees, so we finally got around to making it happen!

We took our Tesla and went to the nursery, joking about who brings a Tesla to buy a tree, other than a Christmas tree, of course :)  When we got there, we saw another Tesla in the parking lot. LOL.

We found a Meteor Cherry Tree, the guy bundled up the roots and branches, and slid it right into the car! When we got home Eve went to work digging the hole and planting the tree. She was so confident that I went to the grocery store and let her plant the tree! She did a great job.

She named it George.👆🏻 Laurens supervised.👇🏻

Last week we had a few cold nights and frost took the Morning Glories, so over the weekend Eve decided to clean out the garden. Today we added some mulch and “put the garden to bed.”  :)

Eve is a great garden partner (as long as the spiders stay away). We almost got a free Meyer Lemon tree this week too! A lady was giving it away on a local listserve. I have always wanted a Meyer Lemon tree, so I was super excited when I saw it, but someone beat me to it. Oh well. I’ll be happy with George and the sleeping Hostas. :) Mostly I’ll be happy with my awesome green thumb daughter.

Saturday

We had a lovely autumnal Saturday today. Alan came down and we all got flu shots together. It was a drive-thru deal, so quick and easy! The nurse even commented on how far we’ve come as a family in the flu shot department. :)

Then we went to our favorite apple orchard for some apples, animals, and donuts.

The annual flu shot flex photo. :)

The forecast said sunny and 80s, but it ended up being cloudy and 60s. Perfect apple picking weather!

A paparazzi shot of my kids eating apples! :)

This sheep has a nice sweater.

The little one was adorable and really enjoyed that stick.

Eve’s new friend Laurens came along to help chose some Halloween pumpkins.

We spent the afternoon watching funny tv, doing jobs around the house, and playing a little Minecraft. A good time was had by all.

Teacher of the Year!!

Wha, what?!

Every year in the spring teachers in the building nominate someone for Teacher of the Year. We all have a chance to nominate, then there is a vote, then the winner is announced at the District-wide Back-to-School Breakfast at the beginning of the year.

This year, Covid-19 hit and all norms went right out the window! I maybe thought about Teacher of the Year briefly when I realized we weren’t doing the District Breakfast, but that was about it.  I assumed we were not doing it this year due to Covid.  There is A LOT we are not doing this year because of Covid! But you know what they say about assuming…

At our first official staff meeting, held virtually, of course, the principal announced the two longevity awards (for teachers who have been in the district for a long time) and then said this:  Video

I had no idea! If I even suspected, I would have done my hair and not been eating an apple! :)  The one day I woke up late, threw my hair in a ponytail, and tossed some random foods in my lunch box… turns out to be the day the whole school is looking at me!  LOL.

I feel pretty dang appreciated though!

Later in the evening I logged into the high school performing arts department’s Welcome Back zoom meeting for parents and students. When the music teachers pulled up the website to show parents, they also gave me a shout-out for all the work I’ve done on it and how awesome it is.

I work hard, for sure, and I never feel taken advantage of, but it is pretty nice to get the accolades!  And the plaque!

First day of school — corona style!

Students returned to school today for the first time since March 17th! Teachers returned for in-service three weeks ago, which seems like a lot of time, but boy did it go fast! There is a lot to do and even more decisions to make when you are opening school during a pandemic! But things were done and decisions were made and today we welcomed kids back with smiling eyes and lots of air hugs! It was weird and good and crazy and hard. Kids were on their best behaviors, for today, as we all navigated this new world together. I hope that behavior continues, though I’ve been around long enough to know that’s not a realistic hope!

On the home front, Eve has decided to participate in the fully-remote option and Lex has decided to do the hybrid options.  This meant that today Lex went to school and Eve was home. I made a deal with a neighbor friend that she would bring Lex to school and I’d pick her kids up with Lex at the end of the day. It was very weird leaving this morning and hoping that my kids would both get themselves to “school” on time. We did lots of prepping and planning, and it all paid off! Both kids got where they needed to be, did what they needed to do, and reported back that they had good days.  Whew!

First day photos are a little weird this year.  In hindsight, I wish I had made a #2020 or #coronatime (or something!) sign that they could have held with the pictures, but I didn’t.  Oh well.  I think Eve’s outfit says it all though. :)

We need to work on our group selfies. :)

I tried to take a picture of how exhausted I felt at 7pm, after a full day of school, kid pickup, and then an hour Remote Academy Zoom call (I’m running 4th grade for Remote Academy this year!). My phone decided to do portrait mode. I think it couldn’t handle my exhausted face! LOL.

2020 – the year when school supplies included masks, thermometers, and tick tweezers! 😲😱

What we did this weekend

We had a creative weekend.  Lex finished a song he’s been working on in Garage Band (an iPad app): Aria Sweden

I finished a hat I’ve been working on:

I also started my back-to-school bulletin board:

And Eve decided to celebrate Will Solace‘s birthday with a cake and greeting.

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Happy birthday Will

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Lake life

We celebrated Rosy’s 40th, Grandpa Tom’s 70th, and Meme and Tom’s 40th in a big celebration at the lake last week. It was so much fun. The house was beautiful. I could happily sit on the deck and watch the water for days and days.

This is a terrible picture. :) At the last minute we decided to bring the dog as well. The car was packed, the kids were crammed in, somehow Eve got the front seat (and a huge, blurry hand in this picture), and we headed to the lake!

We had a beautiful house, right on the lake. If it were my house I would have cut down a few trees, but it is not my house, so I just enjoyed the trees as part of the view.

I love how the and the sky play so well together and look different every day.

Tuesday night was the peak for the Perseid meteor shower. The kids and I decided to stay up until midnight (when the real show was supposed to begin). We played Apples to Apples, our standard “stay up to midnight” game. Then we went down to the dock. It was beautiful. We laid on the dock, discussing the constellations, enjoying the weather and the water. We saw a few meteors, but just as midnight rolled around, the clouds decided to join us, and they rolled in too, think and heavy. Sigh. Even without seeing the official “shower,” we still had a great night.

The next night we went back again, a little earlier, and saw another handful of meteors. No one was in the mood to stay up until midnight, but we did have a second night on the doc, this time with Rose and Joyce.

It’s hard to take pictures in the dark! :) See Huxley in there too, lying on the dock with his people. <3

Sunrise-ish. I’m not really an “up with the sun” kinda person!

We did lots of canoeing, kayaking, and floating.  By “we” I mean the whole group.  I just did the kayaking.  The stairs down to the beach were STEEP and the shoreline itself was very rocky, so it wasn’t the best conditions for swimming, but we had fun anyway.

Lex in the kayak, pulling the Birthday Girl Rose in a float. :) Eve is further out in another kayak and J is on a paddle board.

We had a few afternoon showers early in the week. One resulted in a full rainbow! I love how the whole inside of the rainbow arc is yellow/orange. So cool!

Sunsets are more my speed. :)

On Thursday we had a few extra friends over for the official party.  It was a Tye-Dye theme.  Eve and I made funfetti cake, we tie-dyed shirts, and painted rocks.  There was some grilling of food and roasting of marshmallows.

Funfetti – per the birthday girl’s request.

A doctor, a nurse, AND an artist! What can’t this girl do?!

The shirts came out AMAZING!!! Especially hanging in the sun to dry. :)

A beautiful rainbow shirt made by a sullen sulking teenager. :)

Clemson in the house?!

Joyce is a master fire maker. She brought her A game and whipped up a few mighty fine fires. :) I brought the s’mores!

Alas, our time at the lake could not go on forever (and some of us were missing our air conditioning!) so when the week ended we packed up and headed home.  Back to the ferry (oh yea, we took a ferry both ways!) and our side of the lake.

A roadside vista I just HAD to pull over for!

I would be remiss to end this post without mentioning the one thing that was a topic of conversation ALL WEEK.  The TRAIN!  There were train tracks right behind the house and the trains went by several times a day… but mostly at night! The first night we were there I wasn’t aware of the train and woke up at 3am feeling like the train was in my bedroom!!  It was soooo loud!  That morning I got up (too early) and read the house reviews on the website.  Every one mentioned the train.  Somehow I missed that. 🙄  What’s even crazier though, is that every comment said the trains were no big deal.  I was like WHAT?!? But, believe it or not, by the end of the week they WERE no big deal! I was sleeping through most of them by the end of the week, something that seemed impossible on Monday. The train gave us lots to talk about, even though I didn’t get any picture.  The geekier among us counted cars, researched car lengths, and estimated train lengths.  A little summer math, just for fun. 😊

We all agreed that this is the 1st Annual lake side vacation, but also that we need to find a house with easier beach access.  I’m looking forward to next year’s getaway already! 💖