Monday, August 16, 2010


For months, I've been thinking a lot about boundaries.

Why they exist and why we create them. On a soccer field, there are boundaries. Boundaries of where the ball can be played, where a player can stand and when a goal is made.

I know in some cases they are pliable and in others they are unyielding. Sometimes yes means maybe and other times no means no.

I know they can change over time. For years green peppers were evil and now I occasionally choose to eat them.

I create them to be safe. Safe from some others and safe from some consequences. I avoid people who are cruel. I wear my seatbelt to be safe.

What boundaries are healthy? I think it is healthy to examine boundaries to access their necessity. Life changes, people change. We grow and stretch and learn.

What do you think?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cherry Crest Farm

Saturday we took a day trip to Lancaster PA.

We thought out of all of the places we could visit this would be the best match for our family. It was perfect. There was plenty for us to do and no one got bored. O showed off her developing photography skills by taking pictures of us before we entered the farm. She perched on the trunk of our car and we ate a quick lunch.

I forgot to bring sunscreen. I know, it's hard to believe that I forgot to bring sunscreen. I am the sunscreen nazi. I put it on my face before we left MD but I didn't put any in the car. So, here are pictures before we turned into crispy sun fried critters. Well, LT and I were sun fried, O just got darker. When she was in the bath she pointed at my red arms and asked what happened. I explained that I was in the sun and it burned me and when that happens, i get red. I told her she got darker from being in the sun too and I put her arm across her belly to show her the difference. She looked at it and then dunked her arm in the water and said "I'd better wash that off". ha ha ha. I think she thought it was dirt. Funny, funny girl.

The sling shots weren't busy so we could shoot to our hearts content. LT tried to shoot the ball over the net, he came close a couple of times but it wasn't possible because a fence was in the way of him pulling the sling back far enough to get the kick it needed. O got into the sling shots and wouldn't let us help her once she figured it out.

The maze was one of my favorite activities at the farm. We didn't have a map and we had to find pieces of the map inside the maze. We were being timed doing it too. Our official time was 5 hours, or something. The only reason it took that long is because we stopped for lunch, a nap, a few rounds down the slide, more rounds at the sling shots and to play/torment/ terrorize some baby chicks. Otherwise, I'm sure it would have been 2 hours or something impressive like that.

I mentioned we tormented/terrorized/traumatized some baby chicks. So sad, and true. One portion of the farm was an animal education center. There was an incubator where you could watch baby chicks hatch and right next to it was a box with a dozen or so new hatchlings. They were available for all to hold. O was THRILLED. In fact, she was a little too excited at times and squeezed the chicks until their eyes bugged out.

The scene at the chick box went a little something like this. "O, be gentle, don't squeeze the baby chick" loud chirping "O, careful, the little guy is complaining, that is why he is being so loud" she put it down and picked up a new one. She tried to give the chick a drink by dunking his head in the water. "O, careful, if the chick wants a drink, he'll walk over there and get one on his own" She put it down and picked up a new one and held him upside down. The baby bird squawked loudly. Poor little thing he'd probably only been out of his shell 12 hours. "O, sweetheart, please don't turn him upside down", so she held him safe and tight. The bird chirped even louder. "O, please don't squeeze him." She eventually caught on and chilled out. I'm sure when I was her age, I would have or even did the same thing.

I can confidently speak for all of us when I say the slide was our favorite part of the entire farm experience. O was true to form, like in most things, she had no fear. The monitor at the top of the slide wanted us to slide down at the same time. O had other plans. She wanted to do it "all by myself". She waited until LT and I had taken off and then she shoved off on her own. You can see that in one action shot I have of her. As soon as we hit the bumper at the bottom she would erupt with her deep belly laugh and head right back up the hill.

I love spending time together as a family.

Corny, the Cherry Crest Farm mascot
Duck races
A tractor ride
O wasn't that interested in a family picture. ha ha ha

Here is a video of the slide

O and the camera, part two

My little artist can't seem to keep her hands off of the camera. It proves for some interesting surprises when I turn it on and find there are 45 more pictures since the last time I used it.

We recently bought O some new shoes. She had choices between, Little Miss Sunshine, Little Miss Chatterbox and Little Miss Naughty. She chose, Little Miss Naughty.

I have this thing with taking pictures of my feet where ever I am. I don't remember when it started, or even why, but I have a TON of pictures of my feet all over the world. Maybe O has seen too many of them, or maybe I'm just rubbing off on her. Who knows. Either way, I didn't teach this to her.

I thought this one was pretty cool. H, this is to make up for the pic she took of her converse.

Our stairs.

All photo shoots include a self portrait.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

When O gets her hands on the camera

O LOVES the camera and asks to take pictures anytime she sees it. Here are some of her latest snapshots.

Happy Birthday LT

LT actually let me throw a birthday party for him this year. Usually he doesn't encourage me to celebrate it. He prefers to be in the background and out of the spotlight. I saw it as another opportunity to have people over for a party and another reason to clean our house. We joke that the reason we invite folks over every couple of weeks it to get our house fixed up and cleaned.

Since LT can't have milk products he never gets to eat the cakes at parties. BUT, this was HIS party so I made his cake with soy-buttercream frosting. I was hesitant to try it because it didn't sound tasty at all. I mean, let's face it, some soy stuff is just nasty. Well, we are all pleasantly surprised and nobody complained. O chose the frosting color. Green is her favorite color. She decided that sometime at the beginning of the year. Anyway, the cake looked boring because I didn't want it to draw attention away from ALL of the candles on the cake. LT really isn't that old. In fact, I don't remember how old he is, I just used all the candles I wanted.

I'm rambling.

LT and S birthdays are a day a part so we let S celebrate with us too.

I considered LTs party practice for the one I'm planning for O.

He doesn't really age, does he.

3rd of July

When we lived in Midvale we had people over all of the time and then, we moved to TX. (I'm still mulling over how to write a post about my life/experience in TX) Well, we're not in TX anymore and we are taking full advantage of it. We have met a lot of fun people since we've been here in MD and on the 3rd of July we decided to try out our rusty hosting skills and throw a party.

We had several families over for food and fireworks. The kids played with sparklers while the adults kept them safe. My favorite part of the firework show was hearing the kids "oh" and "aah" and chant "green and pink, green and pink" or something like that. We finished off the night sitting in the driveway making smores on our camping stove. It was a great night.

Some of the pictures were taken by me and the nice pictures were taken by someone else with a really cool camera.