Monday, July 30, 2018

Alabama



We've just gotten back from a family (my side) beach vacation to the beautiful white sands of the Gulf Coast in Florida.  We left a day before everyone else so that we could visit Alabama (checked it off and now we only have 6 more to go!).  We flew into Atlanta, on a very early flight, and drove straight to Birmingham, Alabama- but first we found some breakfast.  We stopped at a Chick-Fil-A and were delighted to discover that it was the original one!


Once we got to Birmingham, we tried to hit the highlights as best we could.  This day seemed to stretch out forever due to our early, early flight and the time change.  We joked all day that it was the longest day ever!  We started by visiting the Vulcan statue, which is the worlds largest cast iron statue.  Birmingham began as an industrial town with its roots in the iron and steel industry and the Vulcan statue is a symbol of Birmingham's past.  There's also a great view of the skyline!





After we checked into our hotel, we set out on foot to tour some of downtown.  We found the town to be so interesting and.... hot!  We forgot just how hot and humid the south is.


We ended up at the Civil Rights Institute which we all found incredibly interesting.  Right across the street from the institute was the 16th Street Baptist Church which was an active and critical point for the movement and where four little girls were killed by a bomb.



Afterward, we walked over to the Railroad Park where we sat and watched the world go by (and also tried to cool off!).  The next morning, after a delicious biscuit and egg sandwich, we checked out of the hotel and headed for the beach.




On our way through Montgomery, we stopped at The National Memorial for Peace and Justice.  I really wanted to see this Memorial and though it was hard and heartbreaking, I'm so glad we stopped.  The Memorial doesn't sugar coat the atrocities that happened to people of color and the full weight of our history is a hard one to bear.  It's such a shameful part of our history but one that I think we must acknowledge and learn about in order to heal and move forward as one.







Thursday, July 19, 2018

Dive Team



At the beginning of the summer, Bryce and I decided that we were going to require that Harris do dive team at our community pool.  He was not signed up to do any camps or activities and we felt like he needed some structure in an otherwise wide open day.  Also, we just felt like it was a great crossover from his trampolining.  Harris was not fully on board and spent the first two weeks of practice talking about how he didn't like it at all.  However, over the course of the next couple of weeks, we noticed that Harris was up and ready for practice, that he didn't ask to skip any days and he would talk about a jump he was mastering.





He was also doing well at the meets (which always helps, right?) earning a ribbon every time.  Yesterday, Harris participated in the PASDA dive championship and he did incredibly well for his first time.  He earned a silver in the 14U* category and a bronze in the 18U*!  I"m so proud of him for following through and trying something new even if it wasn't something he wanted to do.  







*the boy who won the gold has been competitively diving for 6 years!

Monday, July 16, 2018

On Broadway



This weekend Jeni and Trish came to Frog's Hollow for a quick visit.  The main driver of their visit was to see a Broadway show that one of Trish's dear friends, Alex, was a star in!  The show, The Play That Goes Wrong, was one of the funniest things I have ever seen, we were crying we were laughing so hard!


Alex, who was wonderful, took us on a backstage tour afterwards.  He was incredibly nice and generous and it was very special to see the inner workings of a broadway play.  Now we can all say we've made it to a Broadway stage!





Friday, July 13, 2018

In The Garden


Looking back at my posts, I'm so surprised that I haven't done a garden update.  We are now in the time of year where the garden is "easy."  Everything has been planted/seeded and now we just wait for harvesting time!



After such an amazing amount of rain this spring, we now are finding ourselves wishing for a bit more as it's now hot and dry here.


Can you spot Bryce who was just a wee bit tired?

Our first dahlia in the garden!  We are lucky to have even this one as most of our dahlias did not survive the winter storage (another learning moment).


 The blackberries are getting closer!




This garden rose has lived up to her name, always outpacing the others!  Her name?  Hermione of course :).



The color of this new rose is breathtaking!


Such beautiful things are coming out of the garden.  When choosing seed, I do a lot of research to find the tastiest, and the prettiest, things to grow.



Appropriately, I pulled these little carrots up on our 22nd anniversary!



Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Hydrangeas



My dear friend, Kristin, runs a consulting business with her sister where they have spearheaded several events for Martha Stewart Weddings (I know!).  Recently, they were part of a booth at Renegade Craft Fair where they had the most amazing flower wall!  In order to make the flower wall, they put gorgeous hydrangeas on their side and stacked on shelves- it was a dreamy backdrop for pictures!  The theme, naturally, was Endless Summer!


The problem?  No one wanted the hydrangeas back after the fair, nor do most people have enough room (especially those in the city!) to plant that many shrubs in their yard.  However, Kristin and I just couldn't see letting that many shrubs go to a landfill, so I took the truck (and Gretchen and Grace), drove it through lower Manhattan, and over the bridge, to Brooklyn to pick up as many hydrangeas as I could fit.


You guys, I even parallel parked on the street.  We were so proud we had to take a picture.


Somehow, as I ferried the hydrangea out to the truck, Grace and Gretchen managed to squeeze 64 plants in the back of the truck!  It was no easy task and involved getting fairly dirty.





When we got home with the hydrangea, it dawned on me that we now had to plant all of them!  We started out hand digging the holes but soon moved to using the auger on the back of the tractor.  I had originally thought that I would plant the shrubs in the field, but realized that it would be too much heat and sun for the hydrangea, which benefits from some shade.  We ended up lining the walkway that leads to the garden and barn with them.  I think when they fill out and up they will be stunning!






 
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