Virginia is for Lovers

24 04 2008

Greetings from Virginia Beach. We are here for the week while Kevin teaches a class in Norfolk. So much has changed. One of my favorite thrift stores is gone. It’s pretty weird seeing that its gone, but to see that half the building is missing is disorientating. The place where I used to work has been split into 2 different stores, a woman’s motorcycle shop and a craft shop. We’re enjoying ourselves, mostly because with Cale everything is new again. And because of the ice cream. Loving it.

Good things
Here’s more things I’m loving. Cute kids. Cute smiles. Even cuter laughs (she sounds like she’s coughing – she doesn’t quite have it down yet.) Pretty outfits for her (dressing a girl is like playing dolls!!!!) Pretty spring time plants (more in Maryland than here.) Good mail. While my husband was away for 3 weeks(!), I received a package from the lovely Jennifer of The Felt Mouse. She sent me some sweet 70’s goodness for Mabel. I said groovy all day long. It’s really cute and I can’t wait for her to be able to wear it.
The next week I received key lime pie in the mail. Food in the mail rocks. But key lime pie form Key West was awesome. Thanks Kevin.

More things. We bought our house and moved in last week. Very little unpacking has been accomplished, but the whole main floor is painted a lovely shade of aqua. Now we have bedrooms, bathrooms, halls and the basement rooms. Whew! We have yet to get our big shipment, but expect it some time after we get back next week (hopefully!) And hopefully unpacking all of that stuff will be a little more successful than it has been so far. Pictures will come soon, as we get settled (and an internet connection).

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My weekend

11 07 2007

There are times when I read certain blogs (not anyone who reads mine, by the way) and their lives seem so perfect and so happy that I hate them. They gush on and on about how much they love their children, right as I’m trying not to strangle my own. Their homes are immaculate and have been in magazines, while I’m trying to not break my neck on spilled legos. You know the ones. And I have to admit that no, my life is not perfect. And probably never will be. And seriously who would want perfection? And what does this have to do with my weekend? Well this weekend was about as perfect as it gets. I had those special moments with my son that beach trips often bring. I relaxed, I feel refreshed and all new. Well, at least back to normal.

july 4th weekend

The weekend was spent on the northwestern tip of Sicily.   We visited a nature reserve that required tons of hiking and I survived it!  Whew!  It was worth it.  All of it.

  1. Cale’s first funny face – monster eyes.
  2. A view of the beach at Zingaro Nature Reserve
  3. Cale decided to rock climb.
  4. But playing with rocks is fun too.
  5.  Cale and his dad hiked to some caves.  He found “a knife for a knight to fight dragons.”  And the caves were filled with “really nice bats.”
  6. On the way home, we stopped in the medieval town of Erice.
  7. There were 3 castles which of course delighted the boy who is obsessed with knights and princesses.  Cale said the little castle was his and the big castle was mine, since I’m a princess.  Dad’s a dragon.  PS. My castle is a hotel!
  8. From the castles, you can see the sea.
  9. We also stopped at Segesta, to see a Greek temple.
  10. This place was huge.  Can you see me?
  11. Sooooo amazing.
  12. Sooo handsome!
  13. I took this one.  The temple is in the countryside, which is rare in Sicily.
  14. Another Erice picture.  We could have spent days here taking pictures.
  15. Another beach picture.  The water was as clear as drinking water.  However, it was the saltiest water I have ever been in.  Turns out its near salt mines.
  16. The water by this rock was so shallow and gentle.  And there was a little cave too.

So now I’m back home and I feel better than I have in a long time.  I even washed all of my new fabric to get some sewing done soon!





Another travel post

10 05 2007

Maybe I should change my name to sicily junkie. I feel like a terminally ill patient who has only so long to live and wants to fill every moment possible with sweet things. We have about 9 1/2 months left here and I am determined to make as much of it as possible count! My love for Sicily has grown so much. I see the beauty, not the trash; the friendly smiles, not the stares. I gaze upon the beauty, determined to suck up as much as I can, so maybe I can remember it forever, as it is now, not as it will be.

We set out this weekend to go to a nature reserve. We almost didn’t go because it looked like rain. I’m so glad we chanced it! The drive was long but beautiful. Upon the way we saw a sign that said Parco Forzo in Cava Ispica. It was close to lunchtime so we decided to stop for a picnic. Once again, I’m so glad we did. Cava Ispica is a valley below the city of Ispica. It is an ancient village, comprised of caves carved in the mountain wall. Some were homes, burial grounds, convents, and churches. Most were homes though. As we oohed and aahed, we realized that not only were these once homes, but some people still live in them!!!
HPIM2373

HPIM2372
I think the larger spaces were for horses or mules, and the smaller spaces were the homes. The entire homes were about the size of my bathroom! So crazy.

HPIM2401
From there, we found the nature reserve, walked along the beach, froze a little on a sunless day.

HPIM2405
There were all these little ball things all over the beach. I have no clue what they were though. The only wildlife we saw were caterpillars. We had granita and drove on to find somewhere to stay for the night. The first few towns we tried were dead. It’s still off season, so nothing was open. We drove until we found a lovely agriturismo. Masseria Sul Mare was the best place we have ever stayed in Sicily. An agriturismo is a farm that has rooms to stay in, a restaurant made with locally produced food and usually has activities. The food was amazing. It was so peaceful and so perfect. The next day we walked out to the beach/cliffs.
HPIM2488
So beautiful. We walked around cautiously with Cale very close at hand, then headed to the beach. We spent the next few hours running in and out of the water screaming. It was warm, but the current was strong. Cale has never liked the water before, so this is so exciting!

So that was last weekend. As you can tell, not a whole lot of crafting going on lately. Today I finally had time, but I napped it away. I’m feeling a little under the weather today, not sure what’s up. Maybe I will actually have some crafts done soon. My sewing machine misses me! I’m off for an afternoon cappuccino.
PS. More photos can be found here.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mommies!





Have a great weekend

4 05 2007

throwing rocks

Last weekend was perfect. We woke up Sunday to beautiful sunshine and blue skies. Kevin asked what I wanted to do more than anything. My reply, without hesitating was to repeat last year’s perfection. A picnic at my favorite beach. It’s so secluded and so special. Covered in pebbles, sea glass, and seashells, we spent the whole day occupied with nothing at all important.
Pile of rocks we collected.
Nothing more important than this, anyways. Kevin napped while Cale and I dug in the sand for every single rock and seashell that we could find near our blanket. I almost started worrying about being OCD, we were so precise in our digging. After a few hours, the area around our blanket was clean of seashells except for 2 large piles. We were both covered in sand but very content. Nothing could have been better.
Mom and Cale
I love this guy. I think he would agree that we had a really special day together.
shipwrecked
One of the things I love most about the beaches here are the odd things you find. Whether it’s water smoothed tiles or a sunken boat, I’m always amazed.
Dad and Cale by old boat
And tons of babes around! Check out these 2! Woo-wee!
falconara flora e fauna
And the flowers that grow wild here. I’m sure my husband gets so sick of me sighing, “Oh, look at those flowers!”

So this weekend, we’re hoping for a repeat experience. New place though. How could we go wrong, armed with our new picnic basket and accessories? Nature reserves this weekend, instead of beaches by old castles (which by the way is now inaccessible due to the beach being washed away!) Maybe when the water’s not so freezing, or low tide, it will be again.





I’m home

19 12 2006

dec2006 137

I have never been somewhere and felt as at home as I did in Germany. It felt great to fit in. No one stopped to point or stare (although we were mobbed by Japanese tourists who wanted take pictures of Cale.) This was the best vacation we have ever taken. Everything was magical. The food was wonderful, the scenery was beautiful. We all had so much fun. Cale has changed his thinking on this snow stuff. Last year he detested it. This year, he loves it and can’t get enough of it. He threw snowballs, he built a snowman, he tried to slide (sled), he crunched it with his boots. He had a blast. Sadly there was no snowboarding for me. Cale was still sick, so I stayed with him and we played outside. I was a bit relieved though, because I heard the ski lift was scary.
Before we left, we watched the movie An Inconvienient Truth. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it. It was sad and felt really long, but I’m really glad I watched it. Anyways, in it he mentions how the Alps aren’t covered in as much snow as they used to be. It was so very sad to witness it firsthand. These are glaciers and there was only enough snow to ski and snowboard on the highest peaks.
dec2006 136
This is a print we bought of Neuschwanstein Castle. It was so very lovely. We got to drive through part of Austria to get there. I was in love.
The above picture is a woodcut ornament. Its about 1/8″ thick and made of wood. I just love it. We also bought our cuckoo clock. I found the magazines that I wanted, but sadly no guterman thread.
I re-taught myself to knit. I seem to have caught on much better than last time and my scarf is showing amazing progress for the little time I worked on it. Its probably about 18″ long, so I’m super proud. Maybe sweaters and socks are in my future????
I realized that Christmas is this weekend and it kind of sucks. I don’t have much done and I had so many grand plans. So it looks like some marathon crafting is about to take place. The day after Christmas is always the saddest. We’ve never cared much for New Year’s Eve or Day. We don’t eat the traditional foods (because they’re gross!!!- Who needs good luck? I’d rather eat yummy food!) Half the time we can’t even stay up until midnight! So there’s not much to look forward to. Except this year, there will be. Big stuff is happening, stuff that I’m terrified of, other stuff that I’m thrilled about. So maybe it won’t be so sad this year?

You can see the rest of my Germany pictures if you’re so inclined here:

I have no idea why my links aren’t working. The HTML appears to be correct, but it keeps sending me to that weird site. Sorry, I tried to fix it.  Fixed it!