Oct 5, 2019

Life Lately {August / September}

In late August we celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary!

Some years ago we realized we had gone to a different restaurant to celebrate each anniversary thus far, so we decided to keep up the trend. This year Tim surprised me by picking a charming French restaurant I didn't even know existed! The food was delicious and of course I felt I needed to be wheeled out after dessert.

Not too many days after- school began for the older three!

And a couple of weeks later Cora started preschool. She has one of the teachers Evie had.:)


This year September 11th was difficult and emotional for me. I noticed a lot of people posting about their feelings of it and experiences of that day on social media and it dawned on me that we are all still processing it and grieving in our own ways. So much changed that day; there is life before 9/11 and life after 9/11.

The next day was my oldest brother's birthday- he passed away when I was six from an infection in his chemo port. The infection started when he got hit there while playing softball. The longer I live the more I realize grief is not linear. It doesn't come in a tidy little box and then dissipate.
 One comfort, though, is that his birthday falls on the feast of the Holy Name of Mary and he died on the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, so I know Mary's got him.


Some things making me happy lately:

I ordered some muslin bags from Etsy in which to deposit puzzle pieces and other game pieces whose decrepit cardboard boxes were driving me batty. Then I measured the shelf area (huge moment of triumph for me!) and found these baskets at At Home that fit just right! I think Mary Poppins would agree- a tidy area is also a joy forever.

September was SO wonderfully sunny! I've been trying to read on the porch in the afternoons while we still have the warm weather, even if it's just for ten minutes.

One day I made a trip to Salvation Army but didn't find much of anything. On the way out I stopped by the books and found this set- I could hardly believe my eyes! 
I had found several of these books in an online auction some months ago but when they came I instantly could tell they had mold and sent them back.­čśĚ Suffice it to say I'm excited that these are newer editions!

And finally- blackout curtains in Heidi's room! No more broken and ripped, decades old pull-down shade.

Sep 7, 2019

Pray for Joe!

In May of 2017 Joe was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease). He's a loving husband to Mel and father of four children ages 13-4. 
We've known Joe and Mel and their families for many years (his sister Fuzzy blogs here), and our children attend the same schools. They are such a great family! 
Tomorrow (Mary's birthday!) ends the 54-day rosary novena many people have been praying for his miraculous recovery; as this is the "last full measure" of the 54 days, please offer a prayer for Joe Gregory's full and complete healing!

Here's a link to Joe's blog:

Sep 1, 2019

Family Beach Trip 2019

I mentioned in my previous post that we had several hours before we could check in to the rental with my side of the family. The first thing we decided to do was get haircuts for the girls! That worked out perfectly, as it wasn't a busy time at the place we chose (...and the nice ladies brushed out the *bad* tangles we'd been neglecting­čśČ).
Also, it was Cora's first haircut!

After that we met up with my sister and her family who had ended up driving through the night from D.C., after a cross-country plane ride the day before! We decided to have an early lunch at NY Corner Deli, one of our favorite spots. It was our first time meeting the squishy little guy below!

One of my other sisters arrived after we wrapped up lunch, so we all decided to head to the nearby Sea Turtle Hospital. None of us had ever been before, so we didn't know what to expect. It was an interesting place but I don't think we'd visit again, as the slow movement was a bit much! Maybe just trying to keep the turtle theme real? Idk. First we waited for a while in the VERY hot sun, then the lines slowly moved into the vestibule, and inched into the AC and past each exhibit. It was interesting to see the rescued turtles at the end and hear their stories. And props to the kids who all did so well with the heat and waiting!

After that we decided to take a chance to see if the house was ready early, and thankfully the linen company showed up just then for a delivery and left the house open for us!

Remnants of Hurricane Florence in the lot next door
This year all of my siblings except one and their families made it to NC! It was a very full, noisy, and busy week but so great to have everyone together, and for all the cousins to play with each other.

There were three babies- Audrey loved helping to feed this little guy; I lived my best Aunt life holding them!

The girls really enjoyed the pool and being able to practice their swimming.

Never an easy or simple feat, but glad we were able to get a family photo!

I kept hemming and hawing about doing color coded + numbered shirts for all of the grandkids. In the end I decided to go for it and am glad they worked out okay (haha, I was stressing about getting the order right!). Apologies to the checkout lady at Hobby Lobby who had to ring up each shirt and iron-on number individually, though!!

Basically Cora's chosen attire for the week

My brother and his wife were so sweet to have these drink koozies made for everyone!

We invaded the ice cream one place night,

And toasted my oldest sister on another. She recently finished a very strenuous master's program and we're so proud of her!

In the middle of the week we celebrated Evie's birthday. Everyone was so sweet to make it special for her- with balloons, gifts, and the ice cream cake made by my mom. 

Unfortunately the last couple of days held cooler temperatures and some rain. In a way it was a good thing because it made me ready to go home (where it was nice and hot!).
On Friday we visited a small touch tank aquarium while it was raining and then headed back to the house for some beach and pool time when there was a break in the weather. There were lots of shell deposits on the beach, which made for great shell and shark tooth searching.

view of the sound

We did get a full rainbow + lightning on the last night!
I made a couple of side by side collages with photos from previous years:
Different bench but same place:)
These two are a pair! I love their precious littleness in the bottom photo.❤
Like I mentioned before, it was a full week! Early mornings with a free alarm clock of stampeding kiddos up and down the stairs.;) Tim and I were also commenting about how we stood way more than we sat, and my legs kept swelling up which was kind of crazy. That being said, it was a blessing to have so many of us together. I'm glad the kids could spend time running around with their cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents in a place we all love!

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