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Time Out

Sorry I have been gone for so long but I needed some time for myself.  I had a hectic 2 weeks and could not just juggle everything.  Addison was in his last weeks of school.  And I had to attend 2 funerals in one week. Yes 2 and the first one was for 2 people.  One of my good friend's, I grew up with her, parents were on their way to Florida to go on a cruise with their friends.  The driver lost control of the car it overturned and ended up on the guard rail.  Three people were ejected from the car and two of them were my friend's parents.  It was a horrible tragedy.  None of us could believe it when we found out.  I grew up with them, the lived down the street from me.  They were the only ones that had a pool in the neighborhood. They were a part of my childhood.  They were the nicest, most caring people.  They had been married for 50 years.  They met when she was 16 and he was 18.  I pray my marriage and life end up how wonderful theirs was.  They were giving, loving and full of life and will be truly missed.  The other funeral was a friend who was only 29.  This was so sad because I feel like his life was about to begin.  I think you start figuring out who you are and where you want to be around your 30s.  And I believe he had not even gotten close to figuring it out or even experienced real love.  He will be truly missed and made all of us remember to appreciate everyone around us.

Sorry I just need to get all of that out.  Life is precious and sometimes we need to be reminded.

On a lighter note, SCHOOL'S OUT FOR SUMMER.  Addison is officially out of school.  He did great his first year in middle school.  Honor Roll the whole year and made some new great friends.  I am not worried about next year and I will not freak out until Addison has to go to high school.  I made Addison's 5 teachers their own personal stationary for their end of the year present.

I love how the embossing looks and love how I made the envelope liners all about school.  I hope they liked them.  I am already thinking about doing more for friends and family with a different stamp and envelope liners.

How was everyone's Memorial Day weekend?  Ours was nice and relaxing.  Saturday we spent the whole day at the pool and Monday we went to the Botanical Gardens.  I will post some pictures of the Botanical Gardens soon I just need to go through all 300 of them and that will take a while.  Here's my favorite pictures of the silly kids from yesterday:

As you can see Kevin is with us this summer.  We are so happy to have him back.  I made an animated gif to show how goofy they are.

Oh I did mention last time I was going to mention the 3rd chocolate cookie recipe.  You can see the original post for the perfect chocolate chip cookies here.  I baked the 3rd chocolate cookie recipe about 2 weeks ago and the 1st one is still the best.  Because this recipe has bread flour in it, they seemed more cake like than cookies.  I like my cookies flat and crunchy.  But for others who prefer fluffy cookies, this might be the recipe for you.

Baking the recipe 2nd recipe is still going to be a chore because it is hard for us to wait almost 3 days for cookies that are in the refrigerator.  I can't believe they need to chill that long.  I promise I will try to make them soon.  I just will have to make the 1st recipe too so we have something to eat while waiting on the 2nd one.  :)

Talk to you soon!

The secret of.....

Well, I think have found the secret of....

1. Laundry

I hate laundry.  It's the chore I would rather not do.  I would rather scrub toilets and tubs than do laundry.  Laundry at our house seems like an endless cycle.  We try to catch up on the weekend and then by Wednesday the laundry room is a disaster.   Addison wears about 3 outfits a day, his school outfit, his activities outfit, and then his home outfit.  Addison also doesn't believe in using the same towel twice.  Many of times I have gone in his bathroom to take his towel off the floor and use it for myself because I know it is still clean.  Addison also dives twice a week, so that's two chlorine towels, 2 chlorine outfits, and 2 chlorine suits.  Chlorine destroys clothes after awhile so these need to be washed ASAP.   And I haven't even mention JT's clothes.  He has his work clothes, soccer clothes, and then home clothes.  I am the only one in the house that wears one outfit a day.  So now you know how a family of 3 could have so much laundry.  I don't even want to think about what would happen if we had baby.  So Friday through Sunday I have been doing laundry and complaining.  Fortunately, I have taught Addison how to do his own by 1st grade.  But, here's the problem with laundry, it's not just washing it you still have to put it all up.  I think this was the major problem in our household.  I would sit in the laundry room until the end of the week and then we would wash about 5 loads but then have to put up 5 loads.  We would end up doing half and then clothes would just sit in baskets until I started caring again.

Well, I have found the answer to all the folding, steaming, ironing, and hanging.  I have decided to do a load of laundry everyday.  And so far it has worked.  I am able to wash one load and put up one load with ease that it doesn't annoy me.  It also gives me time to wash loads that I save like delicates and hand wash.  I usually just put the hand wash clothes to the side and put them in the sink once a week and dread it.  Now, I have time to use my hand wash button on my washing machine and then lay them flat or hang them.  I also think about what I am washing each day since the pile never gets too crazy.  I have taken the pillow covers off of the pillows on our couch and love set and washed those.  Hand towels in the kitchen have been cleaned.  It really makes me think about what needs to be washed so I can have a full load of laundry.

I am on my 2nd week of doing laundry everyday.  I slipped up the first week and didn't do it for 2 days and it was still fine.  Just a little stack not a mountain.  I really think this is going to help keep our house more organized.  I know JT, Addison, and I are a lot happier.

2. Success

The secret of success is enjoy what you do and be happy with what you have.  I heard people saying this all the time.  I couple of friends and I always talk about what is the meaning of success and being happy with what you have can not just be the answer.  But, then I realized it is.  I have a wonderful family, the greatest most supporting husband,  a smart, intelligent, well rounded child, and a whole zoo of loving animals.   I love being able to cook great meals for them and baking them something that puts a smile on their face.  I love that my son thinks I am funny and we have such a great relationship.  I love that my husband is pretty damn close to my ideal husband but don't tell him I said that (crap doesn't he read my blog?).  I love that my friends have become my family and have some pretty kick butt friends.  I love that a great relationship with my mother-in-law.  I hear other people's stories and I know I am lucky.  I love that JT loves his career so he never comes home grumpy or complaining (that's a big plus).  I just hope I will find a career I love as much as JT does.  So I believe that is success loving your career and loving your life.  Don't get me wrong I have my days that I am sad and mad because I want more; a bigger house, more money.  But, I try to remind myself life is good and remember what I do have.  I have a wonderful family and friends.  It also helps that I surround myself with loving caring people.

Here are my two favorite couples:

3.  Happiness is laughter

Happiness to me is our hilarious child and animals.  I can't tell you how many times Luna or Addison have done something that had us laughing so hard we started crying.  Addison is wild and funny anyways but when you put animals in the mix it is a riot.  Addison and Luna are definitely the comedians in our house. These big and little monsters keep us on our toes and a smiles on our faces.   A boy and his dog is the most wonderful relationship.  I believe they are plotting every day on how to make me crazy.  But to hear that giggle, oh yes Addison has the best giggle, it is truly worth it.

Emmy (our big dog) thinks Mandor (our guinea pig)  is her puppy.  So anytime Mandor is out of the cage she is cleaning him and trying to nurse him.  Mandor is use to this but after a while he just wants to relax in his cage.  Emmy is very protective with Mandor and gets mad when Luna tries to play with him.

Garfield (the cat) is the boss.  Nobody messes with him, he even has the dogs in check.  Garfield comes and goes as he pleases and lets us know when he wants attention.  He sleeps in Addison bed every night.  Addison is his human but he even snaps at Addison once in a while to let him know who's boss.  Garfield is such a pimp that we found out other people were feeding him.  I believe there's a little old lady in our neighborhood that's thinks Garfield is hers and she feeds and gives him snacks everyday.  

Oh I can't forget about the turtles.  I am the only one that feeds them so Addison said they are my animals.    I wanted another dog so we got Luna.   Addison and JT  have stolen Luna and I got the turtles.  The turtles do love me though.  Anytime I come close to the tank they swim to see me. But what can you really do with turtles?  Michelangelo is the crazy one who likes to jump out of his tank and fall 4 feet.  Yes, he's crazy.  JT likes to joke than turtles can't lay eggs in the water so he just trying to get out to lay his eggs.  He escaped once and we didn't find him for a week.  I believe he came out because he was hungry.   We still love them.  And the running water from their tank and watching them swim around is really relaxing.  So they keep all the chaos in check.

So I guess that my secrets, now laundry makes me happy because I have successfully tackled the laundry problem. Gosh I am cheesy.

Oh I have baked the 3rd recipe for chocolate cookies.  I will post pictures and the results soon.


Art and Food

Sorry I have not written sooner, I have been busy with Addison.  I can not believe he only has 3 more weeks of school.  This school year has gone by too fast.  I am proud of his hard work this year.  He did a great job in his first year of middle school.  I was worried about the transition in the beginning but he adjusted well and didn't give up.  He has made Honor Roll in all 3 semesters and hoping for the same thing in the 4th.  I hope 7th grade will not be has stressful.  He deserves a restful stress free summer.

Last weekend was a great weekend.  Saturday, we all went to the High Museam of Art to see the Picasso to Warhol exhibit.  I have been meaning to take Addison for months and felt like a bad mom that it was about to end and we haven't gone.  We got a group together and went and really enjoyed ourselves.  I think my favorite artist was Jackson Pollack.    I don't know what it is I just like his style.  Addison was confused on why Warhol was art and we had to explain Pop culture to him.  I guess a painting of a soup can doesn't really excite a 12 year old.  Addison's favorite artist was Mondrian.  

After Picasso to Warhol we went upstairs to see the KAWS exhibit.  I believe Addison really enjoyed this one the most.  It reminded me of the Itchy and Scratchy cartoon.

After the museum we went to the Atlanta Food Truck Park.  It's a new park off of Howell Mill that food Trucks can park and everyone can enjoy them.  The food was really good and the did a great job with the area.  They a picnic table,  corn holes, and live music.  We arrived at the perfect time.   The sun was about to set and the weather was perfect.  We managed on getting a picnic table that would hold all 11 of us.  The kids ran around and played and the adults chatted.  I am excited to visit this place again during the summer.

Sunday JT, Melissa, Cyn, The Godfather, and I went to Atlanta Station for their Atlanta Food Nosh.  This is when vendors do not have a food truck yet and only have tents.  The Nosh had more food to choose from and was it was cheaper. The helping were smaller but we were able to go around to each tent and taste a lot of different types of food.  The food was really good. The only problem was it was in the middle of a parking lot and it was hot.  We would end up walking around getting our food and then standing in the shade to eat. They did have tables but without an umbrella is was impossible to sit there.  I hope they cover the picnic tables so it can be more enjoyable.  I wouldn't mind going every other Sunday.  The food was that good.

I haven't forgot about the Chocolate Chip recipes.  I was so busy this past weekend that I didn't fix the New York Times's recipe.  But I promise I will get it done.  I have just run out of chocolate chips and I need to go to the store to stock up.  Things I always need: milk, butter, chocolate chips, sugar, flour, eggs.
We are planning to have a relaxing weekend and go see the Avenger movie.  Oh and not let me forget about Cinco de Mayo.   I need to go and start making burgers and french fries.  I am going all out tonight and putting caramelized onions, roasted mushrooms, and a fried egg on the burgers.  For desert, I will be making an apple tarte tain.  I love making Friday night dinner.

I hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!