Thanks for a Great Birthday!

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I wanted to take a minute to thank everyone who made my birthday so special.  From the birthday cards (my Aunt’s homemade card was one of the sweetest I have every received), the very thoughtful gifts, the birthday dinner, the pedicure, the broccoli and carrot cupcake (first I have ever had), the songs, the gluten free birthday cake, the birthday texts, the facebook messages and my surprise lunch and sail in Boston Harbor yesterday…it was all so great!  My Pokeno buddies are taking me out this week so the party isn’t over yet!

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I am so grateful to have so many caring people in my life.  I love and appreciate all of you.  Thanks again for making this birthday so special!!

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Birthday Eve ;) We crashed “MENS NIGHT” with Family Night!!

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My broccoli and carrot cupcake

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a toast to my Pops

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Birthday Lunch in Boston

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A great birthday date from Scott

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sipping vino from our favorite Napa vineyard in a gift from my friend Claire :)

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Happy Birthday Momma!!

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I wanted to take a minute to wish my mother a very Happy Birthday!  I look forward to celebrating with you later today.

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We use to have festive birthdays, the three of us (Pops, Mom and I) back when I was a kid.  There was always a cake for me and usually a shared dessert for the two of them.  It has been just mom and I celebrating for awhile now and last year I made us a GAPS friendly cake and skipped my annual Moxie Soda (in honor of Pops).  This year I am planning on eating Gluten Free Cake and drinking a few sips of Moxie.  Both of these are not on my diet but it is my birthday after all.

Happy Weekend Everyone, love you mom!

 

 

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Making Memories…..Loving Time with Friends

 

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This week has been filled with time with friends.  It was our goal for summer to spend as much time with friends and family and I think we have been doing a pretty good job.  There are some friends who we have not gotten to see much of but there is still time!!  Here is a glimpse of our week.

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The week started off with a swap.  I took the little girls to their first art class at a local art studio and Z went with friends to the Einstein Workshop.  The art class was called “Tea Party” and the girls enjoyed making crowns, drawing cupcakes and modeling tea cups (and other things) out of modeling clay.   The boys were in heaven as they played with LEGO and Z had his first taste of Mine Craft.

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The next day we met up with friends at their library.  Their children’s library was so nice and their summer reading program was really well organized (kind of made us wish we lived in their town). We had so much fun playing with all of the science experiments they had out and catching up with our good friends.

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After the library we went to the local diner for lunch.  This was a very special treat for all of us!

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Later in the week we did another swap.  Z had a play date with his friend and Lil’C went to their house to swim and play.  After playing and lunch, I took the boys to our library for a LEGO party.  It was a packed event but the children didn’t seem to mind and were all very focused on their creations.  They then got to put their creations on display.  After the LEGO party, we all went back for a swim.  It was a nice and relaxing afternoon.

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Today the kids are back with friends and I have a little time to get some projects done around the house.  I had to make a list to make sure I didn’t waste a second of my time.  It would be nice to sail into the weekend with a clean and organized house….here’s hoping it happens!

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A Great Weekend in a Beautiful Place

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We just got back from a lovely weekend in Maine.  My second parents invited us up to their little piece of heaven for the weekend and we had such an amazing time.  Their “camp” is in the woods on a quiet lake and it was impossible not to relax in this incredible location.

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The kids had so much fun with Grammy J and Uncle Hal and were kept quiet busy.  Lil C fell head over heels in love with Koda their Golden Doodle.

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On Friday night we had an unexpected surprise on our evening boat ride….Fireworks!  The boys camp on the lake put on a great show and we were so excited to have front row seats for the show.

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The kids LOVED tubing, Z took a sailing lesson with Uncle Hal and Daddy, the kids went on lots of hikes on the “Indian Trail”, we had a great campfire with s’mores and Z took a kayak ride with Uncle Hal.  We enjoyed getting up close with a great blue heron, loons and saw an osprey nest.  The weekend was filled with many laughs and so many great memories.

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On the way home we stopped in Freeport for lobster rolls and so Lil’C could see the BIG BOOT!  She was so excited to see it again and ran around LLBean like she owned the place.  It would not be summer without a picture with the Big Boot.

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Thanks  Grammy J and Uncle Hal for sharing your “camp” with us.  It was a wonderful weekend and we so appreciate all you did for us.  The pancakes, ice cream, delicious meals….we are so grateful for your hospitality!!

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Kittery Trading Post

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We LOVE Maine!!

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Roasting Marshmallows

Evening Boat Cruise

Evening Boat Cruise

So peaceful

So peaceful

Tubing

Tubing

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Friday Finds….Kiki’s Sunflower Children’s Art Competition

Kiki's Garden Logo in JPGWe are weeks away from the 4th Annual Kiki’s Garden Sunflower Soiree.  It our big scholarship fundraiser of the year.  The organization, in memory of my late sister in-law, has given out 11 scholarships to High School students pursuing a career in the arts.

One of my favorite parts of the Sunflower Soiree last year was the sunflower labyrinth that led to a gazebo tent filled with Children’s Sunflower Art.  It was an amazing sight and something I am looking forward to seeing again this year!  If your child would like to enter the Art Competition, please CLICK HERE for details.  They can mail in their entries, so it does not matter where in the world you are.

If you are local to RI and free on July 26th, we’d love to see you at the Sunflower Soiree!!

zach6

 

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A Day at the Theater

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We had our annual trip to the theater yesterday.  This year we saw Rapunzel with the cousins, Auntie and Neene.  They did a nice job combining the actual story with the Disney movie in just 45 minutes.  The kids all really enjoyed the performance and want to go back again this summer for another show.

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The boys had no interest in the Meet and Greet after the show and thus are not in many photos.  The girls on the other hand were very excited to meet Rapunzel, Flynn, Mother Gothel and the animals.

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After the show we headed to the kids favorite restaurant for lunch.  It was a really fun adventure!!

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What a Weekend!

photo 1Even with a very rainy 4th of July, we had a very busy 3 day weekend!  Plans did have to change and some were postponed because of the rain but we still managed to fit it all in.  Scott got the weekend he envisioned and we all had a great time with family and friends.  Here is a glimpse of our crazy fun weekend!

photo 4The weekend began on Friday the 4th with the Burlington Parade.  We were marching to promote a very special 5K this September for the Charles A Doherty Memorial Foundation.  Unfortunately the rain did not hold out for the parade and we all ended up soaked to the bone.  Despite this the four of us had such a good time marching and spreading the word about the race!

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Where did she learn this teenage side pose??!?!?!!?

After the parade, we celebrated with lunch out at the kids favorite lunch spot.  The rainy evening was spent at an inpromptu gathering at my parents house.  The kids loved playing with their cousins and we enjoyed a good meal with the family.

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Early Saturday morning we woke up and and had a family breakfast out (thanks Kacie, Abbey and Sydney for the gift card!).  We then headed north to the lake.  Our good friends the Lennon Family had invited us to spend time at their island home on Lake Winnipesaukee.  Their home is on a different part of the lake from where we usually are and thus it felt like we were in a totally different place!

The wind was quite fierce and the waves very large as we made our way to the island.  We lost a boat window and were a bit scared as we made our way across the crazy waves!  Thankfully we all made it in one piece and enjoyed the day despite the wind.

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Island living is quite different from what we are use to at the lake, it was a fun adventure.  Fireworks were all around us on Saturday night and the kids had a ball running around with glow sticks, playing with sparklers and enjoying the warm summer evening.  We are so grateful to the Lennon family for allowing us to share time with them in their little piece of Heaven!

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On Sunday we went straight from the island to a family cookout.  This cookout was suppose to happen on Thursday night but was postponed due to the stormy weather.  We all swam, ate a great meal, hung out and the kids roasted marshmallows.  It was such a fun evening with good friends!

We are a bit tired today and a little cranky. We are hanging low and trying to chill out a bit before our fun adventures this week!

 

 

 

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Happy 4th of July!

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The word of the holiday weekend is “flexibility”.  This is because the weather for our Nation’s birthday is not suppose to be good with Hurricane Arthur on his way up the East Coast.   Plans have been postponed, some plans are still up in the air and we are praying that the kids first parade doesn’t end up being wet.

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It has been a hot week here in the New England.  With 4 days of temps in the 90′s, we were trying hard to find ways to stay cool.  The kids went to a 4th of July craft day at the library the other day which was really great (and air conditioned) .  There were crafts, food and raffles and Z won a gift certificate to a local pizza shop!   Yesterday we cooled off in a friend’s pool which was so much fun.

We hope you all stay safe, dry and have a wonderful Fourth of July!!!

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Making Memories…We LOVE Summer!

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What is not to love so far?  Pool parties, Adventures with friends and family, swimming lessons, meeting new friends, spring cleaning, forgetting what day it is, family projects, birthday parties…..all great things (well maybe not the cleaning).  Here are some photos from the last few days.

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A Day at the Aquarium with the Cousins

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It was a great day!

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Swimming with our good friends!

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loving their new pool

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We have the best time at their house!

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Hiking Club

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They named themselves the “Ninja Blobs”

 

 

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My favorite nephew turned 4!!

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Lounging in the pool

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A great adventure with friends!!!

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Swim Lessons

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They are doing so well in their lessons!

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Bucket List Item=Check

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This past Saturday morning, I was up with the birds at 4am.  My friend Kori and I got to go on our first hot air balloon ride.  To say I was nervous was an understatement, I was a ball of excitement, nerves and fear.  Going up in a hot air balloon has been on my bucket list for years.  I would have added it to my 40 before 40 list, had I thought it possible with all the other expensive items on our 40 list.  Well not only did I add it to the list on Wednesday when Kori asked me, I crossed it off on Saturday morning and had an amazing time doing it!

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The balloon pilots called it a “Ten Day”.  We had little wind, great temperatures and a crystal clear day.  When up in the air we could see both Boston and the Atlantic Ocean (both about a 45 minute drive).  It was so much fun to watch the balloons get filled up, jump in the basket and float away.  I have to admit when we first started lifting off the ground, I was a bit terrified.  But once up in the air in the quiet of the morning with the sun rising, I felt very safe.  My only fear at that point was dropping my phone as I took pictures.

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We floated about 7 miles and our landing couldn’t have been softer.  Our group of 8 passengers, pilot and 2 crew (the crew followed us on the ground) worked together to put everything away.  It was amazing that such a big balloon fit in such a little bag.

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When I got home, Scott asked me if I had now conquered my fear of heights.  I explained that my fear is not one of heights but of falling.  If I feel secure, heights don’t bother me at all.  I can be on tall buildings looking down and even looked down from the balloon at 600 feet because I felt secure in the basket.  Now if it had been windy, there may have been tears.  I am not sure I would have felt as secure in wind, but for now I am happy to say that I have checked this item off the bucket list and hope to do it again someday.

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Right before we put the kids to bed that same night, Scott went out on the deck to check on the grill.  You will never believe what was floating over our house?!?!  Two of the three hot air balloons that had gone up that morning.  It was so interesting that the balloon I rode that morning was one of the last things I saw before I fell fast asleep.  The kids loved seeing them float over our house and waved up to them.  It was the perfect way to end a GREAT day!

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