Friday, August 21, 2015

First Day of School

For the record, sixth & eighth grades. Jiro now with blue hair & contacts. Satchel refusing to wear the new shirts he asked me to buy (because they are kelly green) for the second year in a row.

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I should also add that apparently middle schoolers do not need to be tucked in. Over the summer the boys typically stayed up later than me, and now that we are back on a schedule, they seem to be just fine going to bed without any coddling or snuggles. I do of course kiss them ad turn off the light. Satchel has even been known to say, "I'm tired. I'm going to bed." What? I still have to nudge Jiro and let him know it is bed time, but he doesn't really put up a fight.

I can still get some TV watching snuggles, but I fear those days are numbered too.

I think I'll spend the weekend wandering the grocery stores telling the new moms, "It goes by so fast!"

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Road Trip! Part 3

After our super busy day on Saturday, we decided to take it easy. Kate and I lounged in the backyard while three of the boys watched TV and one of them, the amazing Santiago, made us breakfast! With only one good arm, I might add.

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As you can see from his face, he was the first to fall asleep the night before. Boys!

Three of the Provencios' friends joined us and we all went to the neighborhood private beach. Santi finally got to relax!

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The bay was pretty shallow, but there was a deep part for boats, so the boys spent a lot of time jumping into the deep part when not floating in the shallow part.

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There was also a short lived attempt to keep a fish alive in a float.

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Akuma had fun too.

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After awhile we went back to the house, got a little food in us, and then headed over to Carlos' apartment for more swimming, but in a pool.

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There was some pizza and even a little raquetball...or whatever game they were playing on the raquetball court.

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Then it was back to the house. I went to bed and they were allowed to stay up as long as they want. In the morning it was time for goodbye (not photographed). It was sad, but certainly not their saddest goodbye. I think our trip help everyone realize that our friendship is strong enough to survive living in different cities. We'll see everyone again, hopefully sooner rather than later!

The ride home was uneventful. The boys ignored me in favor of summer reading, which was hard to complain about!

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And they did a LOT of sleeping! They certainly had a lot of catching up to do! We spent an uneventful night in the outskirts of Knoxville then had a little hot chicken in Nashville before finding our way back home.

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This was definitely the most ambitious trip I've done with the kids. (Keep in mind Warren once took them on a 5 week roadtrip!) They are really fun to be around and great in the car. I'm so happy we went!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Road Trip! Part 2

Once the boys had a chance to run around and get the lay of the land, we loaded up in the car and went into town for dinner. The Boys loved watching the boats.

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And they were totally impressed by this kid making art on the street. (WE had to circle back after dinner & ice cream.)

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Our dinner at Frontier House (?) was really delicious. Jiro and Enrique shared a huge steak dinner. It was really cute. We were all so busy catching up that I didn't take any pictures. My dinner was really pretty though--lump crab meat with bibb lettuce, lots of fresh fruit and avocado.

After dinner there was some ice cream, some more strolling, and then back to Kate's house to watch a movie. I went down to bed around 10:30pm I think. The boys continued to run around until about 3am when I begged them to go to sleep! They were about to set up a board game!

They did finally sleep and Carlos came over with donuts, eggs, and bacon around 10am. We had a nice breakfast and then headed into DC for the day. (Thankfully I did not have to drive!)

We started off at one of the art museums that was apparently famous for its cafeteria chicken tenders. It's true.

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In the cafeteria, Satchel saw a replica of a Thibeaux painting he studied at Snowden. Carlos went to inquire as to whether there were any actual Thibeaux paintings we could see and we were directed to the National Portrait Museum. So after lunch we headed that way, but made a stop at the Air & Space Museum first.

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The boys ran off to do their own thing for the most part, but insisted they check out the monkey (Abel?) who went to space, later died from an infection, and then was stuffed and put on display!

They all managed to get super thirsty while walking around, but refused to drink out of the water fountain because it was "gross." Really? So, we got them some bottled water outside, but they had to sit through another group photo.

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Then we went to the National Portrait Museum, which was awesome. In addition to three Thibeaux paintings, we saw tons of other cool stuff.

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The boys started losing steam after an hour or so, so we had to promise to feed them again. But not until I had one more group shot!

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Now, I know we were in a city full of awesome restaurants, but we had six mouths to feed and still several hours worth of sight seeing to do. So, standing there outside the museum I spotted a Chipotle and the monkeys went wild! Ha!

Once sated we headed towards the monuments. First up, Lincoln. (Note Santi's photobomb.)

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And I love this outtake with Enrique's photobomb.

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I appreciate that Carlos made this day educational.

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And that tourists did their part too. Want to guess what this group is doing?

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I'll give you a hint.

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Yes, the dude is laying on the grass so that it looks like the Washington Monument is his penis. Turns out it was actually two teens with their parents staging that photo! Ha! The boys were inspired to take pictures that looked like they were licking, punching and holding the monument.

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Up close it is even more spectacular.

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Next was the Jefferson monument. And then FDR. And then MLK! I had never been to any of them. It was dark by now and extra fun, I think. FDR's monument was my absolute favorite. It had tons of quotes that read like they could be spoken today.

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We made it back to Annapolis around 10pm and no one had trouble sleeping, that's for sure!

One more day to go. Stay tuned.




Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Road Trip!

The boys and I had one last hurrah before school started. We drove to Annapolis, MD to visit their besties. I am not a power driver like Warren, so I planned to take it slow. Also I hate driving at night.

Our first day on the road, we stopped in Nashville to have lunch at the Pharmacy. It's yummy burgers, fries and homemade sodas. They also have the most amazing patio ever. It seriously goes on for days. However due to the fact that we arrived during the lunch rush, we took the first available and ended up sitting inside.

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Satchel was pretty grumpy about lunch and the trip in general, but thankfully cheered up by the time we got to Knoxville. We got there around 4pm and probably could have kept going, but we decided to get a nice hotel room and enjoy the city.

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We were right by Market Square so we took a stroll and found a Satchel approved dinner spot, Soccer Taco.

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I thought the food was just okay, but the boys loved the soccer theme and talked about Fifa players throughout the meal.

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We did some exploring and window shopping and then went to see the new "Vacation" movie. It was so inappropriate, but super funny.

The next leg of our trip was only four hours, so we slept in, had lunch in the square, and then went to meet the world's sweetest baby.

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We arrived in Blacksburg at Hope's house just in time for dinner.

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And drinks!

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The restaurant had a special where you could flip a coin and win a pizza. Jiro won!

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After dinner we did some strolling and hit the health food store for snacks.

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Back at Hope's, the boys chilled while we sat in the backyard and chatted. Then we all watched a movie until we fell asleep.

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We were eager to hit the road on Friday so we could possibly avoid DC traffic. That plan failed, but we made it in one piece and I have a new found understanding of what traffic actually is!

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The boys were so excited to see each other and picked up right where they left off. More to come!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Foot Golf

On Saturday the boys and I decided to check out Memphis Athletic Ministries' foot golf course at the Defense Depot. What is foot golf? It's golf with a soccer ball! Fun, right?

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It's actually quite challenging. Look at that hill!

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Satchel easily won the first hole.

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Hole #2 was 200 yards further!

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Thankfully #3 had a water station!

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By hole #5, I was kind of kicking ass and the teenager was grumpy about it. "I'm not mad that I'm not winning," he explained. "I'm mad that I'm losing!" We let him sit out for a minute.

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#6 had water to drink, and to traverse.

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By #7 the heat was getting to everyone, but we persevered.

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We eventually lost track of who was winning and just tried to do our best (and not melt). I loved it. I want to go back! And I want to check out the Riverside course.

The beauty of the MAM course is that it is only $5 each in the form of a donation. And it's about 5 minutes from Midtown.

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Since it is affiliated with the church (a church?) it is not open on Sundays.

Let me know when you want to go!
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