Thursday, August 30, 2012

Stepping Out

Our warm summer days are numbered.  Preschool is only a couple of weeks away and the nip in the early morning air is getting hard to ignore.  So we're taking full advantage of the now,

spending our days outside and avoiding the ankle deep drywall dust coating every surface of our house.

The Hydrangea Fairy of Edison

G and I picked late summer bouquets - she did all of the scissor wielding and flower arranging.   I was only needed for reaching vases from a high shelf and shaking spiders off dahlias:


Our time together in the garden lead to the inevitable question, "why haven't we ever seen a fairy here?"  The only answer that I could come up with was, "well, maybe they don't know that kids live here." 

So G stomped outside to remedy that, and made this fairy ballroom floor for them to dance on tonight and to signal her kid presence:

The Hydrangea Fairy of Edison left her this little note:

I can't wait to see Genevieve's reaction in the morning and to spin more tales about moonlit fairy dances in our garden.  Watching her believe so wholeheartedly in fairies is all the magic I need.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Barking Mom, Dungees, and Living Sculpture

The first 5 hours of the day were unpleasant for me - and everyone within earshot of me .  While working on our dry wall from upstairs, Lindolfo overheard me snap, "Stop whining!  I'm out of patience!" to my brown eyed girls.  The dad at the playground overheard me say, "no, you can't have a banana because the smell of them makes me dry heave" and gave me a once over that obviously placed me in his mental bad mom category.  A mom at the deli gave me a sympathetic, knowing, and somewhat concerned smile when I hissed, "bum or knees in your chair now, or we're leaving without lunch." 

Marguerite checked my lack of balance by asking, "Mama's patience?  Where?" with her little palms turned up and her brow furrowed in question.  Shit.  Cool your heals mama.  Stop being so uptight.  Mea culpa.

Things got better when we came home to find a gigantic garbage bag in our frig.

This only means one thing, Dungees for dinner!  I can't eat crab without singing my 7th grade science teacher's diddy, "Echinodermata!  Echinodermata!  A spiny skinned organism." 

I harvested beets and carrots from the garden to accompany our acquired bounty:


While peeling the skin off of these meaty garden jewels I overheard Genevieve yell from outside, "Mom!  We've found something amazing!  Come quick!  It isn't a sculpture!"

With a set up like that I had to check it out.  I found them laying on their bellies, quietly watching this:

What a relief that they live in the moment.  That their barking mom of the morning is eagerly invited to share in their afternoon of discovery and joy. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Mermaid in the Alley

The girls and I had a lunch date in downtown Mount Vernon before running errands today. 

I focused on keeping the girls from touching rat traps and picking up cigarette butts while they traipsed down an alley,

and they stayed focused on finding a mermaid.

They win!

House Project: Siding

The siding was finished today!

Next up, sanding drywall mud (and a lot of vacuuming and dusting for me from the fall out). 

Quote of the Day

The setting:  Me in the kitchen shredding chicken for enchilades.

Drew:  Wow babe, you can really pick a carcass.

Roughing It

We're back from three days in the woods, tucked into the folds of the Cascades with the Smith and Vallee crew.  Excluding Drew borrowing my extra pair of sweat pants to survive the cold nights in our tent, it was a beautiful weekend. 

Marguerite is old enough this year to have hit her camping stride, hustling along to keep up with Genevieve and Buck, binge eating potato chips, and snagging the best chair by the fire. 

Drew's past attempts at teaching me how to throw a frisbee have been redirected - what a relief!  I'm much happier as a spectator:

Lake Diablo's chilly waters were enjoyed from the row boat, and Genevieve is pretty sure she saw a mermaids breath captured in a stream of bubbles - maybe even caught a glimpse of her long siren hair:

Princess sand castles were built:

Genevieve and her minions braved the slack line:

We packed up this morning (and that's no small task, we took enough stuff to furnish a second home) and enjoyed a quiet drive home, two grubby and tired girls asleep in their car seats.  Until next year, Colonial Creek.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

To the Mountains We Go

Our kitchen floor is lined with coolers and boxes, the car packed to the gills with all of our camping gear, and this excited 4 year old is zonked out on the couch with her daddy after a long evening of packing:

Marguerite isn't so sure about what's to come, so she koala beared herself to me,

until falling asleep after 76 rounds of five little monkeys jumping on the bed.  Mama called the doctor and the doctor said, "a hot shower and a glass of wine are in order, and don't forget to set your alarm for early to finish packing."

We're off in the morning to the mountains for our annual Smith & Vallee Company camping trip.  I'll be unplugged, but surely blogging in my head.   Ciao til Sunday!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

In Moderation

Moonwater and I moderated a public meeting tonight about a local development project in downtown Bellingham.  It was intense, but so are we, and we make a damn good team.

"Are you two related?"  we get asked a lot.  Nope.  Just smart, Italian mama's wearing their best (hottest) power suits and wielding microphones.

The mojito and tapas debrief at Temple Bar made a good segue back to home, family, bedtime. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

House Project: Windows and Insulation

With starts and fits, surely this project will get done.  The windows are in,

 the walls are insulated,

Girls Bedroom

Master Bedroom

Master Bath

Four dudes hauled sheet rock up our treacherously steep and long stairs today.  I can't wait to see what this all looks like with walls...

August's Bounty

Good thing I planted all of the chard, Chuck really appreciates the shade:

Here are the edibles:

Last year's discovery: delphiniums grow TWICE in one season.  Here's round two of this pacific giant:

My friend Collette breezed onto our porch almost six years ago with this hydrangea in a beautiful pot, a wedding gift.  Six years later, and it is the focal point of my favorite spot in the garden:

A few more snippets:

Finished Trellis:

Mother's Day splurge:

Covering ground, that's what we do.