Thursday, June 30, 2016

Boondocking Time

Well folks we are hitting the open road in the Open Range. Going out in the wilderness to commune with nature. No TV. No wifi. We will have backpacks, hiking shoes...and bear spray! 

Till then...peace out. 

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Crossing The Ocean

What: Demi and Hannah's Big Adventure 
When: Starts today! 
Where: Final destination Wroclaw, Poland...but first Rome 
Why: To teach English immersion through music at the American School of Wroclaw

That's about all I have to say about D's adventure. Only because I'm the kind of mom who believes this is her's to own, to share with others...and mine to be a financial contributor. I'm truly happy, like a giddy school girl, for the learning, teaching and growing experience that is hers. I'll follow the girls' blog and wish I could be them. 

See you at the end of the summer, D! Love you with all my heart!!

Side note: King Ralph's nerves are calming. His dad heart will grow in the absence of his baby girl.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Happy Father's Day

Thank you King Ralph for loving our girls!
A father is always making his baby into a little woman. And when she is a woman he turns her back again. ~Enid Bagnoldgirls 

This quote is so fitting of King Ralph as a dad. Always preparing our girls to be women. All the while holding tight to the umbilical cord (he believes is attached to him). 

When he's not soaking in the pool 
being silly with one of the girls 
(Pretzel Boy mustache pretzels) 

Or...snake wrangling on Father's Day...

Now (more) drinks and BBQ! 

I hope every dad out there has as great of day as we are, with all our dads! 

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

No Pay. Time to Play.

woke up early to mow the grass before the summer heat and humidity kicked in. Did two loads of laundry. Started the dishwasher. 

On to more important summer hall pass obligations--sunning and reading. 

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Heat Don't Scare Us...Until Sunday

The typical St. Louis summer weather kicked in for the weekend--HOT, and just in time for the start of my summer hall pass. The sun blazed all day while I scrubbed the inside of the house. I was sweating as much inside the house as I did when I took a 15 minute skin bronzing break. My floors are white sock worthy now! And my skin, slightly sun kissed. 

After dinner we packed in the car and headed to Forest Park's Art Hill glen, for the Shakespeare In The Park Festival. This year's production is--A Midsummer Night's Dream. When D was in high school and a member the Shakespeare Club she was in this play. Making it more fun to watch. 

The evening proved itself to be beautiful! D's college bestie came in town to join us. She spied the most fabulous spot...we could almost reach out and touch the stage from our blanket spot. The breeze was blowing, making the night perfect. Not only was the night perfect, but this year's production was hands down the best the festival has put on stage! It was rip-roaring hilarious. 

I took complete advantage of my summer hall pass status and slept in on Saturday till 9:40am. I was like a teenager sleeping a weekend morning away.

There was so much to get done. Burgers to make. Fixings to be sliced. Beans to bake. It was birthday celebration day. We celebrated my mother-in-law turning 75 years old. All the grandkids were there. No name of a missing "kid" on a sign in the picture. We sang...D took on the harmonizing, taking "Happy Birthday" to a level none of could compete with. 

On the seventh day we rested...because it was damn hot outside! 

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

I Am Ready!

Today at 3pm I start my summer hall pass. I can hardly contain my excitement! This school year was an easier year. The kid nonsense was down 34% over last school year and I chose to ignore all adult drama. Adult drama can make anyone feel ill. No one outside of my house is worth feeling ill from! Today I shall have an extra pep in my step--it's called joy!! 

Yesterday after work I prepared to begin centering my happy zone by taking King Ralph on my daily exercise walk. I wanted to mix it up by walking a different paved trail. We headed over to Jefferson Barracks Park to walk the Mississippi River Greenway Trail. 
Yesterday was an absolutely gorgeous day...worthy of a walk by the river. The deer and rabbit were out for walks too. The barges moved swiftly, as they floated down stream. The sky was blue with fluffy clouds. Everything about the late afternoon said--thanks for taking a walk outside! 

Then I broke my cocktails-on-Friday-and-Saturday-only rule and had two glasses of Merlot. My friend J and I made that rule when we started our get healthy kick. I'm down 18 pounds. 

Today there will not be wine after work. There will be walking. There will be plenty of joy. 

I'm ready people! Ready to get this day started...and over with! 

Sunday, June 05, 2016

When The King Leaves The Castle

Is it okay that I like when King Ralph goes out of town? Because I do! He's not gone out of town often, so when he is I take advantage of doing some things he has zero interest in. 

Before he scooted of town we had a date night--compliments of Princess A's, Prince Charming. King Ralph and I rocked out at the Boston 40th Anniversary Concert. I think a bottle of Geratol is on the counter of nearly every person who attended the concert. I guess we aren't in high school anymore...thought King Ralph as he flashed back to the last time he saw Boston in concert. 

Saturday Princess A, M and I went down to Forest Park to view an exhibit at the Missouri History Museum: The Little Black Dress. I loved it! We loved it! King Ralph would have hated it. He would have joined the other husband that sat in the main lobby, on the tan leather couch. So him out of town and the three of us enjoying everything LBD was girl perfect! 

After we ooo'ed and aahh'ed over some exquisite century old LBDs, we drove down to The Loop for lunch at Salt + Smoke BBQ and Bourbon. A day that started off with heavy rain turned into spectacular weather. We sat outside noshing on yummy foods, sipping craft beers and bourbon mules. 

On the way back to Princess A's house I spotted this fine display of product loyalty 
I really have no words for this! And Stag to boot! Sigh. 

I spent the evening home alone watching Redbox movies that King Ralph would have rather ate arsenic than watched--Carol and The Choice. 

Sunday I talked M into walking the 5.1 mile trail I love to get my steps in on. We decided to treat ourselves to a donut before we walked. The baker was stunned that anyone would want just one donut each. It's all about self control. We got to the car to ingest our fattening breakfast treat, opened the box and...
Mr. Donut Man tossed in some donut holes for free. This is just another reason to love the Ex Cop Donut Shop! Then it was off to exercise.

My favorite walking trail was lovelier than ever. The farm fields in the center of the trail are all booming with blossoming corn stalks. The trees are full and green and the wild flowers add bursts of color. The frogs sang and the wind blew at just the right moments. 

That's how I roll when the King leaves the castle for 36 hours.

Saturday, June 04, 2016

Rainy Saturday Leaves Me Melancholy For Last Weekend

I'm lying in bed listening to the rain. The rain has put a hamper on the much needed chore of grass mowing. Instead I lay here thinking about last Sunday and Monday. 

Last Sunday we woke in the camper. We woke with the hope that Mother Nature had calmed the shut-ins, so we could splash around in the East Fork of the Black River. We desired that sense of "summer kick off" that water immersion gives. Not the case. The number rating system for the water's flow was dropping, but not enough to be considered safe. Instead we hiked the 2.25 mile Shut-Ins Trail.
The hiking in the area is some of the best Missouri has to offer. The rugged terrain has a Colorado-esque feeling. 
As we traveled the trail we arrived at an area were the river was calm. We nibbled on snacks from our backpacks, absorbed the sun and had a foot swim. 
When we hit the trail again we were surprised to find ourselves standing at the foot of a waterfall. It seemed to pop out of nowhere. Beautiful! 
The mountain top views looking down the river was nothing short of awesome. 

By the time we finished hiking the shut-ins had finally opened. A sea of idle picnickers rushed toward to waters. We opted to hold off on the fun till Monday. Giving time for the eager crowd to thin out.

Sunday evening we attended one last ranger program: Tree-rific.  M and D needed the program to complete the Explorer patch program. As educators they refused to take any shortcuts, and prepared a short, detailed presentation...which included photos, like this find:
(a nest built in a low laying ground tree, making the egg vulnerable to prey). 

Then the big moment happened...the presentation of the patch! Proving, you are never too old to explore. 

Monday we hit the shut-Ins at 10:30am. The sun was blazing already...perfect to bronze the skin with a summer toned glow.  

Even though it is raining today...and I can't mow the grass...the weekend has fun activities! 

But first, caffeine!