Tonight we had the Grecos over for dinner. KC grilled some Meat House chicken and turkey with their marinated mushrooms, Jessica brought over a broccoli and cheese casserole and I made some cheesecake brownie bites for dessert. We sat and caught up for a long time. It was a good evening.
At about 9:00 they packed up to leave. Nicholas almost stepped on this guy as he stepped out our front door. It's the biggest slug I've ever seen: easily 4 inches long. Eeew! You can even see the slime under him in this shot. We left him alone since he's really not hurting anything but it's still kind of nasty. I thought it was a cool pic though.
Today I brought my winter jacket, KC's leather jacket and our down comforter to the cleaner. Every time I do that, the comforter spews down all over the house. I try to pick it all up but those things fly everywhere and hide. When I came back from running errands, I found this one in the middle of the kitchen floor. It reminded me of the FSM with his noodley appendage.
As promised, I've been checking on our robin family. It appears they have 2 new eggs since last time. I'll check again in a few days to see if I can get a pic of the mother sitting on them or even if they've hatched.
I went in to school today to drop some Contact paper off to Macy's teacher. While I was there, I saw Delaney's class coming out of lunch. One of her classmates was feeling ill so I stayed with the rest of the class while the teacher brought the ill child down to the office. Delaney's friends noticed I had my camera with me and asked me to take a picture. I allowed Delaney to snap this one. I think I have a budding photog on my hands!
Every year I take Macy out to shop for her birthday dress. Since it's right at Easter time, there are lots of really pretty options out there.
She usually picks out a flowery one but it's always spinny. We started at Gymboree, Crazy 8, Gap Kids (where she found and posed for me with this great pair of sunglasses), and Children's Place but there was nothing there that caught her eye. We went in to Macy's and I saw why. She was instantly drawn to the gauzy, sweetheart dresses that start at size 7.
She's going to be 7 next week but she is far from being a size 7. There was no convincing her of this fact however so I had her pick out 7 or 8 dresses and we lugged them into the fitting room. As I predicted, they all swam on her. Reluctantly, she agreed that a size 7 was too big for her. On the way back out through the store she decided to give the size 6 dresses another look. She found a few she was willing to try on, then she saw a clearance rack and found one that she really liked. Back into the fitting room we went. Lo and behold, the clearance rack dress was perfect. We asked the clerk to hold it for us so we could continue to look. Just to make sure we had the right dress, we went to JCPenny and Belk and tried on a few more but none could touch the lime green with turquoise swirl dress from Macy's. I know it sounds hideous but really it's quiet adorable. It helped seal the deal when we saw the same dress in the 7-14 area in Belk. When did my baby outgrow the little girl dresses?
For some strange reason, I was unable to upload any of the pics I wanted to for today after I had altered them to make them even remotely presentable. I had to duplicate it, revert to original and then re-crop it. I touched up the color a little bit. I wasn't in love with the way I had it done the first time and I'm even less happy with this version. Either way, it is a picture of some flox and azaleas growing at around the driveway of one of my patient's day cares. I saw it when I went in and then made my student wait while I snapped off a few pictures. Obviously none of them were great since this was the best of the lot but I do love flox as it flows down over the rocks and walls around here this time of year.
Tuesdays are the days Macy has to hit the homework hard to make up for the lack of time she has on Mondays and Wednesdays. Here she is doing about 8 pages of math. I didn't even have to help her. She just gets it. Apparently there is a little bit of KC in her after all.
Along with the pollen, we've been deluged with these little guys as well. This one was on the inside of my car door of all places. I noticed him (her?) as I was driving Macy to gymnastics car pool. As I rounded a corner, I was fascinated by the way the light made the body appear to glow! While I was stopped at a light, I grabbed my camera from the front seat and took a few shots. Unfortunately, I had to do it quickly since I didn't have much time before I had to move. I had to do some significant cropping and playing with the light and even then I'm not completely happy with it since the head and tail aren't quiet in focus. But it was the best shot I had today.
I specifically brought my big lens when I took Floyd out for his afternoon walk today because there is some wisteria growing on a tree next to the greenway that I'd tried to shoot with my small lens earlier in the week but without any success. As I came down the hill, I saw this little guy in a tree singing his heart out. I zoomed in a started shooting. Every time I circled around, he turned his back to me. It was very frustrating, like he knew I wanted a good shot and was determined not to allow it. I did eventually get next to him enough to get his profile at least and snapped off a few pics. I really just held the shutter button down hoping to get one of him chirping. Luck was on my side today and one out of the 7 or 8 I took had him in full tweet. I did take some shots of the wisteria as well but none were as cool as this little guy.
For those of you who would prefer a more traditional look at the towhee, here he is just looking cute.
Last year, we had a family of robins nest in one of the bushes next to our garage. Today, the girls came in all excited that they had found another nest. This time it was in a bush up against the Nikol's house, directly across from the nest we had last year. I wonder if it's the same family? I will continue to watch it and hopefully get pics of the mama and then the babies. National Geographic in Cary!
Tonight we went over to Kirsten's to partake of some live music in the cul-de-sac. It was a benefit concert for a family whose son lost his battle with cancer but they were left with enormous medical bills.
The band was a pretty good cover band. One of the members was Kirsten's next-door neighbor. They set up in his garage and closed off the cul-de-sac. They had tents set up in the middle with auction items to bid on and some cupcakes to buy. We just gave the organizer some cash for the cause since the auctions were already above what we were willing to spend.
The neighborhood kids were all out there playing and dancing. I got a great shot of Macy and Olivia cutting loose on the front lawn. Then it started to rain. There was a mud puddle in the neighbor's drive way. It was just too much for many of the kids to pass up, Jack included.
I love these kids! Can you tell? I have almost as many pics of them as my own up here!
OK, not literally but the pollen in the air for the past two days has been obnoxious. Last night as we came out of the gym, we were all astounded by the yellow fog that had descended on the parking lot. At first we were thinking there was a fire nearby but the lack of any odor lead us to the conclusion that it wasn't fog or smoke, but a think cloud of pollen.
This is a picture of an oak leaf. Normally oak leaves on the ground would be a brown color. You can see it all along the edges. I spied this one at the edge of our yard as I walked back from the bus stop this afternoon. The entire middle is covered in a thick coat of pine pollen. I found it to be fascinating and mildly disgusting at the same time.
I am fascinated by the evenness of the coat and consistency of the edge. It was completely natural. I don't think a human could have gotten it just so.
The color is incredible. I did not change that at all, only enhanced the shadows a little bit to give it depth.
What's so disgusting about this is knowing that we are inhaling this mess. Kind of makes me wonder if I am sprouting a baby conifer in my lungs at this very instant. Lord knows I have some dirt left in there from Haiti! Dirt, moisture and pollen: sounds like a potential pine forest to me! So if the next time you see me, I have a month full of pine needles, you'll know why.
KC and Macy had their camping trip for Y princesses tonight. Delaney and I had a girls night where we did Chinese takeout, then went to Skinny Dip for dessert followed by a trip to the used book store down the block. She chose two "39 Clues" books since the one she really wanted, "Dork Diaries," was not available. I told her she could pay me back when she got home. I was not going to let her think I am a money tree. If she wanted books, she could pay for them. She has plenty of money from Christmas, chores, etc. Delaney was very put out by that. Her birthday is coming up in June so we compromised. I purchased them for her but she will not get them until her birthday. A win/win I suppose.
The azaleas are in full bloom in our front yard. They are a favorite of my mother's so I wanted to get a good picture of them for her. We have three colors; light pink, white and dark pink.
When we moved in, there were 3 azaleas near the front door along with several over-grown boxwoods lining the front walk. It looked downright intimidating, like you were walking into a haunted house.
One of the first things we did was rip them all up and replant them. Some of the boxwoods went in front of the bay window to fill in where there was a blank spot. The others went into the back yard around the steps to the deck to hide the lankiness of the poles holding the deck up.
The azaleas were good, solid, pretty bushes so we decided to make them a backdrop along the left side of the driveway in front of a copse of trees and natural area. We realized that 3 were not quite enough to completely fill in the area so we bought 2 more and planted them at the end to delineate our yard from our neighbors. They are still significantly smaller than the original 3 however so we are hoping that in a few more years, they will grow and look a little less conspicuous.
I took pictures of all 5 plants but the light was odd and the background is messy no matter how shallow I made the field. So I went into macro mode and got a few nice close-ups of the flowers. A few minor color adjustments and some cropping and voila.
I'm a mother of 2 girls living in NC. I've dabbled in photography on and off but really this is just for fun