Because the 4th was on a Tuesday this year, the holiday weekend felt like it lasted FOREVER.
Don't get me wrong. We had a really awesome weekend. It was busy. There was a lot of adulting happening. There was a fair amount a whining. There was a LOT of eating.
Our 4th of July on the 1st of July
Sounds confusing. But our town celebrated the 4th on the 1st this year. The town square (yes, we have one of those, and it is an actual square) party began in the afternoon. But we waited until after dinner to head down.
What a spectacular week!
We joined my husband's parents and his brother's family in the southwest for a 7-day Caravan tour of the Grand Canyon and other amazing spots.
Thank you (again) to all of the men and women who gave their lives to protect our freedoms. We know freedom is not free. It comes at a steep cost. We do not take it for granted.
We packed SO much fun and crazy into one weekend. It was a bit insane. Anyway, let's jump right in and recap these crazy four days.
Reagan was going through withdrawal. She really needed her besties.
I can relate... I miss mine. But that's a whole other thing.
So we invited her BFFs over for a sleepover. We took the girls to our (new) favorite pizza joint - Aunt Mary's.
Well, I am so happy to report that our plants have sprouted! They have not died! Yay!
Seriously, this is a major win for me. I literally have no idea what I am doing.
If you missed our beginning, click here to read about how/why we started gardening.
We will be moving our tomatoes into a bigger pot soon. Stu wants to do hanging tomato plants on the back porch. I'll let you know how that works out for us when we get it up.
In case you were wondering, Rea's tomatoes were the first to sprout. They were followed a day or so later by the jalapeños and then the cilantro.
Sometimes I think whoa, where did the time go? Sometimes it's holy crap, hurry up. Others I feel like I am never going to get all this done.
You know what I am sayin'?
Anyway, I explained my blog absence to you in the last post... It's a miracle we have all made it through that endeavor. No internet while trying to homeschool two kids is a nightmare. Good for you if you pull that off without drinking.
Basically, April was the craziest month. I think it may have been the most insane one Stu and I have created together. My face broke out. I yelled (more than usual). I cried (in front of people). It was horrible. But all that stress was going to end... I knew it would.
My life felt like a big pot on the stove, to which I kept adding cups of stress. I kept stirring, hoping it wouldn't boil over. I have a few burns from the bubbles. But nothing major.
All the stress was leading up to our week of closing. True, closing is stressful enough. But our week was unfortunately (for us) extra busy. Here's a quick recap:
We moved into our new house about 2 weeks ago. Immediately after closing and getting the keys, we called to get all the usual utilities set up. This included a call to the cable and internet company.
They told us for new construction, that had to come out and hook some things up. Ok. No worries.
They told us, because of the volume of new construction around us, it was going to be 2 weeks before they could get to us. Huh? Two weeks without internet? How are we supposed to live?
Riley was crushed when I told him. It took the fun right out of the new house purchase (for him). And I think he probably contemplated asking if he could remain at Grammie's house for a few more weeks.
Well, I am SO HAPPY to tell you that our time is up. We are back in the land of the living. Our zero-bars lifestyle is done! We survived!
Truthfully, it was more of a major inconvenience than anything else. It seems our whole world requires a strong wifi signal. And our black days have probably cost us, I'm sure my cell phone data usage is outrageous. (Sorry hun... just remember you love me and the kids.)
Huge news from our family... We bought a house!
What's up friends? I've got this cool thing to tell you about.
Apparently there is an internet award given by bloggers to bloggers. You know, share the love, build the community kind of thing. I dig that. I love it when people support others in the same field... the world needs more builder-uppers and less selfish buttheads.
Sorry, I was beginning to digress there.
The award is known as The Liebster Award. And I am so happy to accept the nomination from Breeana (Momming with Grace).
What is good? What is evil? They are a lot like beauty - in the eye of the beholder. In the real world, it's important to look beyond the surface to find the good and bad apples.
There are plenty of people who look shiny, perfect, blessed and happy, but when you open them up, some are the most rotten apples. These apples will tell you all sorts of wonderful and kind things to your face. But their behavior will not match their words. They will behave one way in front of some people and do a 180 when around a different group. In front of some, they will have nothing but kind words for you, honey flowing from their lips, praise and love for all to see; privately they will hardly open their door to receive you.
Then there are the apples that fell off the tree long ago. They are bruised; they've been kicked around. They do not sparkle. These apples are rough and tough. They are harder to cut open. Because these apples won't kiss your butt or shower you with constant flattery, some people won't even bother to pick them up. These apples are quieter than the first group. They often appear rude because they sit silently and observe.
People are quick to judge. And the first apple is often dubbed the good one.
I have a connection to the latter group. Give me fallen apples any day. I, myself, definitely fall into that group. I do not show my core easily. You have to earn that. Shiny apples refer to us as cynical or mean. I disagree. I am not cynical, I just might not like you. I choose to be real. My life is not perfect, but I do not feel the need to project a perfect image. I know plenty of cynical shiny apples... shiny apples sometimes make their Facebook posts pessimistic as a way to have others compliment them, shower them with affection, buff them (to extend the analogy).
So, what to do?
Books teach us that the true character of a person reveals itself through actions. Character is what a person is like when he/she does not think anyone is watching. No one is perfect. I have yet to meet a single perfect, sinless apple.
I tell my kids to watch and listen - pick apples who do kind things (without seeking recognition for it), pick apples who are honest, do NOT pick apples based solely on what they project to the world. And most important, it is ok to put an apple down and walk away if you feel you made a bad choice.
This week's throwback is Rea, when she was 4. I love this smiley face.
I took this picture on the way to school one morning. Her W.O.W. (3-yr-old program) class was having a book character day... And my (way-ahead-of-her-time) cutie dressed as Hermoine from Harry Potter. She was not phased at all that every other girl was dressed as something princessy and frilly. She has always known what she likes, and she is not afraid to be unique. That is one of the things I love the most about Rea.
Family & Life
Nothing super fancy here. Probably not life changing either. But you might enjoy a peek into our world.