Friday, October 19, 2018

Quick Takes #270: October fun

  1. Autumn has arrived at last and we have been making the best of it; and hoping that fall colors are soon to follow.
  2. The kids school's Octoberfest was great fun! Lisbeth danced and had fun with friends. Caitlin mourned the absences of the carousel but found enough other rides to enjoy especially the giant slide.  Liam and I checked-out the Cliff Hanger and it was so amazing we went back for seconds. Capped the night with funnel cakes and called it all a great success!!
  3. Last weekend we headed out to a local orchard for a fun afternoon of apple picking.  Unfortunately the types of apples we wanted were towards the back of the orchard which included a solid hike especially for 5 year old legs but once we found the section everyone got into the fun of picking.  Later that evening we got to enjoy Dr Daddy's apple pie and Lisbeth's apple turnovers.
  4. Also in the last couple weeks Liam after being so close for almost a month Liam finally threw caution to the wind and conquered bike riding san training wheels!!
  5. For those of you on Instagram (who haven't already seen) check out the #postcardsformacron thread. Asked and answered Mr President!
  6. & 7; Enjoy some pictures and have a wonderful weekend.

Please head over to Kelly's for more 7QT's 

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Reading fun and future challenges

    Last week I finished In Farleigh Field (review in works) and with that I have completed this year's Modern Mrs Darcy reading challenge.  This is my 4th year attempting the challenge and as ever I really enjoy pushing myself to out of my reading comfort zone and try new genres or go for a longer/tougher book than I might otherwise.

Looking back at my planning post; I made a few changes but overall it was a good framework to follow.

   Speaking of challenges; as many of you know I love a book challenge and I love geography; so when a friend shared this link I knew it was something I wanted to try.  While not setting a time limit I will try to stick to their recommended list for each state though not including Look to the Mountain as a suggestion for New Hampshire is a huge omission and I'm considering that state done 😊.

As of this point I have 22 states covered ~ 28 to go 💃!

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Open Books ~ October '18

The Atomic Weight of Love was Elizabeth Church's debut novel. The book begins as Meridian heads to college in Chicago, falls in love and deals with a long-distance relationship as her boyfriend had to New Mexico to work on a secret war project.  They later marry and when Alden decides to stay on at Los Alamos after the war Meridian lets go of her dream of a doctoral degree but searches for how to stay true to who she is.  Church who grew up in Los Alamos does a fascinating character study of her mother's generation as they travel from the late 40's to early 70's with all its shifting social norms.

The Penderwicks on Gardam Street by Jeanne Birdsall is the second in a series of books about 4 sisters. In this book they cope with tough homework assignments, new neighbors, and the idea of their dad beginning to date again.  The book is aimed at older elementary children and is charming, well written and well paced.

Please head over to Carolyn's for more Open Book.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Quick Takes #269 September thoughts

  1. Happy Fall ~ after what has felt like a lot of rain the sun is finally shining which is definitely helping everyone's mood as fall activities ramp up and quizzes and tests start coming more frequently.
  2. Caitlin is enjoying Kindergarten; though points out that there is a lot more rules than in Pre-K. Her first Daisy meeting went well and as did her first couple of gymnastics classes.
  3. Liam is enjoying his soccer team; having even taken a couple turns as goalie.  His new Cub Scout den/pack also seems a much better fit then last year and he is starting on his first Wolf merit badge.  School is also going well with him meeting the challenge the increased work load of second grade well as well as having fun trading Pokemon cards with several classmates.
  4. Elisabeth having made the move to the top floor is learning to juggle multiple teachers and changing rooms for classes. Gymnastics got off to a bumpier start, but hopefully have her coach with a better understanding of her skill level (aka front handspring not front roll).
  5. During my mom's visit last week we returned to a wonderful museum we had last visited my freshman year of college. My dad was a huge Wyeth fan and so on Parent's Weekend he dutifully visited my college house and School of Nursing; and then suggested we head to the Brandywine River Museum.  Now 20+ years later it was just a wonderful if not even more so. Known for its excellent Wyeth family collection, there is also paintings by his sisters and his brother-in-laws; as well as currently wonderful exhibit on portraits including sketches and portraits by Norman Rockwell and Mary Cassatt.
  6. Adding a bit of sadness to these past couple of weeks is the knowledge that the Penn Newman Center will soon be demolished. The news of the sale came out during the summer so it is not a shock but I know it will be a bit of gut punch when I see it actually gone.  The building was built in the early 1970's and apparently not well; but given that the center is not only where I met and began dating Charlie but in the chapel where we made our marriage vows it is hard to see it go.
  7. Have a good weekend!!
Please head over to Kelly's for more 7QT's!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Guess Who's 8?: A Photo Journey

   I did a photo journey to mark Elisabeth's 8th birthday and decided to repeat for Liam's.

Happy Birthday Buddy!!
Wishing you a great day and wonderful year!!

Friday, September 7, 2018

Quick Takes #268: As School Begins

  1. This week brought us the interesting combination of the beginning of school and a heatwave.  The combination meant the first day became a half-day and the kids were encouraged to wear their gym uniforms.  Has cooled enough today that they were able to wear their normal summer uniform for the opening the school year Mass.
  2. Preparing for school took on a different path this year when as incentive for Lisbeth to clean  her desk we decided to get her a fancy new desk light; and thinking about desks that it was time to get Liam a desk for his room ~ and so in addition to copybooks, crayons, and glue sticks; we have bought and assembled a desk, and two chairs. 
  3. We celebrated Labor Day by heading to the pool for one last swim. The kids had so much fun swimming this summer and I was impressed by the improvements I saw in their swimming skills. Afterwards we headed to Rita's for some water ice.
  4. As I've been meeting up with people in the school yard again and we've been catching up on everyones summer I've been laughing to myself because I keep describing it as a good summer; (the kids really enjoyed their camps, did their summer work without complaint and we all had fun at the pool) and then I wonder if Dr Daddy would agree given the broken jaw.  It is a real testament to him that this didn't become a bigger issue but rather an opportunity to try out different smoothie recipes. 
  5. And now for some pictures ~ Elisabeth ~ 5th grade

  6. Liam ~ 2nd Grade
  7. Caitlin ~ Kindergarten

Please head over to Kelly's for more 7QT's!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Open Book ~ September '18

Linking up again with Carolyn to share what I've been reading and as I've recently been on vacation there are a few.

The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street continued my journey to read all things Hanff having discovered a couple of years ago that the movie I've loved for many years was based on a book and she wrote many others.  The Duchess takes Hanff (and us) to London; 84 Charing Cross is being released in England and the publishers gift she with a trip to London for the release.  Luck for us she kept a journal and that journal became a book with lots of lovely tidbits of the people she met and her impression of a city she had dreamed of visiting for so long.

The Convenient Marriage by Georgette Heyer was a bit too much caper and not enough romance for me ~ and left me wanting to have a serious sit down with our heroine Horatia who lucked into a wonderful husband and lacks the good sense to trust him.  While I don't regret reading this the book ~ it did make me want to reread one of my favorites of her's soonest!

Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan was a fun fast read with a bit too much angst but very good characterization about three generations of a Massachusetts family as summer begins and they head up to the Maine beach house won in a bet fifty years earlier.

The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley is in contention for the best book I have read this year.  It is the story of Ada who due to her clubbed foot has been kept a shut-in by her mother, so when the children from her neighborhood are evacuated to the country she makes her escape.  Written about a 10 year old for 10 year old readers issues of abuse and trust are handled gently but honestly.

Please head over to Carolyn's for more Open Book!