Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Idlewild 2011

Yes, I know, it's been a while!  I've been wanting to post about our annual visit to Idlewild since August 11th.  I wanted to include some actual video in the "video", but since Jim is the only one who knows how to get the video from the camera onto the computer, that didn't happen.

This year's trip to Idlewild was bittersweet.  Last year, we spent the majority of the time in the "kiddie" portion, with Dylan riding the smaller rides by himself.  This year we didn't even go in that area.  I think he rode just about every "big kid" ride he was allowed on... twice.

When we got there, I explained my brilliant plan that we should go to the Jumpin' Jungle area FIRST this time, while everyone still had energy, instead of LAST, like we always end up doing, which every time in the past has resulted in time-outs.  No one was going for it.

Last year, Dylan went on ONE "big kid" ride - the Hot Air Balloons.  So, naturally, we went on those first this time.  But, then, he wanted to go on more "big kid" rides... and more... and more...  One sad part was when he was told, after waiting in a long line, that he wasn't big enough to ride the bumper cars.  Two little tears escaped one eye, before he regained his composure and put on a brave face.  Jim and I don't do well on rides that spin.  If the whole ride spins, that is usually okay, but if each individual car spins, that is usually NOT.  Dylan really wanted to go on the Tilt-A-Whirl, so my mom went on it with him!  That lady is amazing, I tell you!

He even went on the roller coaster, in spite of the long line.  My dad and Jim spent the whole time talking to each other, while I entertained Dylan (thanks guys!), but he did it!  Waiting in lines in the past was torturous and sometimes impossible, so this was a big change.  He still isn't "good" at it, but he can do it, so that is a big step.  My dad and I sat in front of Jim and Dylan on the roller coaster.  I looked back before it started and Dylan had a huge grin on his face.  I looked back half way through the ride and Dylan looked like, "Whoa!  Why did you let me go on this?!"  But, I looked back at the end of the ride, and the huge grin was back.  (Maybe he was just thrilled it was over?!)

After riding rides, we went to the water area.  This is the first year they had a wave pool, and Dylan's first experience with waves.  At first, he went way out in Jim's arms, but when the waves were crashing against him and all around him, he decided they were out WAY TOO FAR!  But once he was safely back in the shallow he loved it, and didn't want to get out, in spite of the fact that he was shivering and his lips were purple.

Last year, Dylan would NOT go on any of the water slides.  No way, no how.  This year, I figured that since he has (mostly) gotten over his fear of getting his face wet, that it would be fine.  We walked over to the water slides, and Jim tried to get him to go on the smallest one, while I waited to take a picture.  And waited... and waited... and waited.  Finally, I went over and said, "Dylan, I know you're scared, but sometimes you just have to try things that are scary, and you might find out you like them.  So, which one do you want to do, the red one or the orange one?"  "The red one, OR the orange one?!", he whined, looking at me like I was just the meanest mommy ever.  "Yes, which one?"  "Oh, all right!  The orange one, I guess", he sighed pitifully.  But, guess what?  After that first time on the orange one?  He did it again, and again, and again, and then the red one several times!  I was so proud, I had to refrain from shouting, "THAT'S MY KID!" and laying an egg.

Do you want to guess what area we went to LAST, when we were tired and hungry, since it was close to dinnertime?  Yep - Jumpin' Jungle.  Those of you who've been here a while might remember the time I had to physically drag Dylan out of the balls, which resulted in time-out?  Well, this time Dylan almost had to physically drag ME out of the balls, simply because I could not get my 39 year old body out of there!  I felt like I was in a big bin of quick sand!  ABORT!  ABORT!  We actually made it the whole way through Jumpin' Jungle with no time-outs this year!  However, if my parents and Jim make me wait until 8pm to eat dinner next year, after a long day at Idlewild, I'm putting all of them in time-out in Jumpin' Jungle.  I'll make them do their time in the ball pit of quick sand.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Best Day Of Summer

I have been SO busy lately!   Busy squeezing out the last bits of fun from summer, and busy getting stuff ready for the 3 sales I'm participating in.  One was a yard sale at a friend's house.  That was yesterday, and even though we didn't make much money, we got rid of a lot of stuff, so I'll call it a success.  Now I have 2 consignment sales to get ready for, plus school shopping, plus vacation.  I am loving August.  If I'm honest, I had trouble with July.  The unbearable heat and humidity took its toll on me.  I was irritable and low on patience, and not enjoying my time with Dylan as much as I usually do.  But, this month, I am back to my normal self.  He seems back to his normal self, too (adults aren't the only ones affected by unbearable heat and humidity).

This past Wednesday was my favorite day of summer up to that point.  It was the first day in the 70's since... I don't remember when!  The air was perfect, the sun was shining, and my sweet boy and I set out to enjoy the outdoors.  First, we went to the farm.  It is the same farm that my parents took me to as a child, which always brings back so many memories.  I walked along that same beam, carefully balancing, my parents close by, in case I fell.  I hope to take my grandkids there someday and watch them walk on that same beam!  I got so many great shots at the farm, but I'll just share a few.

After the farm, Dylan had a special request.  He really, really wanted to go back to Bill's Golfland.  My parents took him there last week to miniature golf, so I assumed that is what he wanted to do.  When we got there, he surprised me by saying "Mom, I really want to hit the golf balls!"  He didn't want to miniature golf.  He wanted to drive golf balls!  My first reaction was to say no, thinking he wouldn't be able to do it, and he would get frustrated and bored quickly, and it would be a big waste of money.  But, I could tell he really wanted to try, so I gave in, figuring I would just hit most of the balls in the basket, once he got tired of it.  I didn't get to hit a single ball!  I wish I would have had the video camera, so I could show you how happy he was, hitting those golf balls.  So you could hear his excitement as he shouted, "Mom!  Did you see how far it went!  I'm good at this.. huh, Mom?"  So you could feel the cuteness as much as I could in that moment.  Sometimes, your heart just overflows with love, doesn't it?
Sitting there afterwards, watching him eat his ice cream, thinking of all the times I had sat in the same spot, eating my ice cream as a kid, made me ridiculously happy and content.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

This Is What Happens When I Clean

One weekend, we got Jim's mom to watch Dylan at her house, so we could get stuff done around the house.  Jim installed a ceiling fan in our bedroom.  I tried to tackle the disaster area that is our spare room, and get stuff ready for several sales coming up.

Installing a ceiling fan meant moving the bed.  That allowed me to see the humongous dust bunnies that had been living under the bed, which led to me deciding that I must clean every inch of the bedroom immediately!  That led me to discover the four boxes of artwork that Jim had shoved under the bed.  THAT led me to possibly an hour of discoveries, looking at Jim's artwork that I hadn't seen before.  THAT led me to this post.

When Jim tells me about his dreams, I've noticed they often involve him being a badass.  I think he has always had a secret (or not so secret now) desire to be like this guy...

Or maybe this guy...

Or, this guy?

I KNOW he wanted to be this guy for a while...

Oh, and he wanted this car... and still does...

In truth, sadly, I think these drawings were a more accurate foretelling of his future...

I mean, we don't have a convertible, and I'm not blonde, but still... pretty accurate.  And, this next one really made me think he is secretly psychic...

In case you ever wondered how old Jim is, this should give you an idea...

This one is so uncharacteristic, at first I thought it was one of mine.  I love it, and I want to know what that girl is thinking...

Some of you will be able to relate to this one... I know I can...

You might have noticed, a lot of Jim's artwork is somewhat "dark" in subject.  But this next one scared me!

That's one of his ex-girlfriends.  HAHAHAHAHAHA (snort)  That is what I thought when I saw it, but the funny part is that when I asked him about it, he said, "I demonized a picture of an ex-girlfriend".  "She must have been so flattered", I remarked.  "Hopefully, you won't be doing one of me any time soon?!"

He got a B+ on this one!  Are you kidding me?!  Just goes to show that art is subjective.  Well, I for one think he is very talented.  I'm his biggest fan, just like this chick...

Yea, I'm exactly like... that.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Thirty Nine?! Are You Sure?!

I know I said I was going to post Jim's artwork, but first I must tell you about my birthday!  Yes, it was my 39th birthday on Friday, and NO, I was not excited about turning 39.  At all.  I'm not sure why it was so monumental to me, but it just was.  How the H did I get to be 39?!?  I mean that cannot be right?!  I don't feel 39, and I'm not sure I act 39 either.  Hmmm... how do 39 year olds act anyway?  I might need to know that.  Anywhooo... apparently 39 year olds have trouble getting to the point.

My birthday started when I stumbled my weary, half asleep 39 year old butt into the shower at 5:30am to get ready for work.  Let's just say I already was not happy.  Mid shower, still soapy, I decided I needed to shave my armpits.  The razor had a clear covering on it, which you slide off.  As I slid it, I caught my thumb on the blade.  Did you just cringe?  Yep, me too.  There really wasn't much blood, but it hurt like a (not nice word I can't write on my blog because my parents read this).  Strangely, things started to go black.  I recognized the feeling because I once knocked myself out in my own closet, (clumsy people have a lot of stories).  I half fell out of the shower, onto the floor, and tried to focus on breathing normally and not passing out, while singing myself a song.   "Happy Birthday to me... Happy Birthday to me... I almost passed out in the shower... Ouchie, Ouchie, Ouchie!"

So that was the beginning of my birthday, but mid afternoon, it started looking up.  First, my parents came over to watch Dylan, and brought cupcakes.

Then, Jim and I left for our overnight trip!  My husband, the one who never plans anything EVER, made us reservations at a Bed & Breakfast in Ohio!  You have no idea how much I needed it.  We drove about an hour out of the way, when my non-planner missed our exit, but I didn't even care, I was so excited.
We got to talk uninterrupted the whole way there, and during dinner, so I was already loving it.

We arrived, and the serene location, with a view of Atwood Lake was perfect.  It was the first time I ever stayed at a B&B.  I had this idea that it would be weird, living in a house with a bunch of strangers.  I thought I would hear them, and they would hear me, and we would have to make awkward small talk at breakfast and when we passed each other in the halls.  It wasn't like that at all!  I have never stayed in a place that was so quiet!  Yes, there were 7 other couples staying there, but other than saying "Hello" at breakfast, we didn't really see them.  When we arrived, we sat in a swing and talked some more and watched the sunset.  The part I really want to remember was Jim turning on the water for the jacuzzi tub, and it running for a really, really long time, before I finally went over and said, "Jim!  I think it is draining!"  That whole time, the stopper wasn't down, and the water had been draining out.  Then, we were out of hot water!  (We figured it out eventually).  Jim even brought me snacks and sangria to enjoy while we were in the jacuzzi.  (I don't know who this guy is who plans, but I like him.  Actually, I love him.  A LOT!)

The room had a ginormous king bed that you had to jump up into.  I am now ruined, and campaigning for a kind sized bed of our own.

Saturday, we were served a delicious breakfast in the sun room, with a view of the lake.  Then, we went to the beach, and besides swimming a bit, spent the afternoon under a tree, reading a book, talking, and relaxing.  Bliss!  (I did manage to step on a bee, "Happy Birthday to me... Happy Birthday to me... Ouchie, Ouchie, Ouchie!), but we won't talk about that.

We had dinner at "The Lighthouse", a restaurant on the lake, with great food and a nice view.

I arrived home relaxed and rejuvenated.  Hope that lasts at least a couple days!  Oh, and I have an idea for this 39th year that will hopefully make turning 40 less traumatic than I imagine it.  Stay tuned for that!
Oh, and if you know how a 39 year old is supposed to act, let me know... so I can act exactly the opposite of that!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What I've Been Doing

What I've been up to since last time, in bullet form, because I am getting too far behind...

*Taking Dylan to ride his bike.  He is loving his bike these days.  He has grown so much, that it already looks too small for him, and we'll need to buy a bigger one next spring.

*One day last week, I made these...

In the same day, I took Dylan to the library to get new books, took him to swim lessons, made a new dinner recipe for us in the crockpot, and also made a mom in the Mom's Club dinner, who just had a baby.  I felt a bit like Superwoman... that day (it didn't last).  Just call me Martha.

Yes, he was excited... until he tried them.  Then, he said "I don't like the white part".  I think I responded, "When I actually make something special, complaining about it is a bad idea!" (in true Martha fashion)

*Had an eye appointment.  You know how it takes a while for your vision to get back to normal after your annual appointment?  Well, it took my eyes 5 HOURS!!!  What the heck?!  I still couldn't read the road signs at 6:30 at night when I was driving to go meet this sweet little baby...

*Took Dylan to my in-laws for the day on Saturday, so Jim and I could get work done around the house.  Got a $110 speeding ticket on my way home (44 in a 25 mile zone).  Oh, and he pulled me over in the worst part of town, and when I asked, "Did I do something wrong?", he answered, "No, not really"?!
Then, he told me "I'm not giving you any points, and it's just a $25 fine".  Uh, yea, it is, but when you add this fee, and that fee, and the other fee, it comes to $110.  Groan.  As soon as he walked away to write up the ticket, I had a crying fit.  But, I got myself together before he came back, and do you think my puffy eyes and red face made him decide not to give me the ticket?  Uh, no.  I have NEVER gotten out of a ticket.  Not once.

*We took Dylan to Keystone Lake on Sunday.  We had a great time, but I took very few pictures because... well, let's just say that it was hard to get a shot without some very interesting people in the background.  People missing quite a bit of their front teeth, people in bathing suits they should NOT have been wearing, etc.  Oh, if my family is enjoying the beauty of nature, your family blowing cigarette smoke in our faces tends to dampen it for us.  I had a moment where I fantasized about dousing their cigarettes with my sons squirt gun, but.. well.. they scared me, so I decided against it.

(Oh!  While cleaning our bedroom on Saturday, I found some of Jim's old artwork that I plan to post next.  You do NOT want to miss that one).
(I'm planning to change the look of my blog.  I already changed the background, but might change it again.  Stay tuned...)