Summer Reading with Kidzilla

Summer reading programs are simply awesome. As far as I’m concerned, any program that gets kids reading and introduces them to new books is awesome.

Like many children, Kidzilla participates in our public library’s summer reading program. She loves books. She loves to read. Hitting the library opens up a whole new world of reading for her without breaking our budget any more than her reading habit already does. (Not that I’m complaining…)


Our reading sessions are fantastic – no matter what we’re reading. More often than not, when we read, Zilla will ask questions about words and what they mean or how a certain circumstance would be possible or why a character does something. We have great conversations over books and I hope that continues. Sometimes, our book discussions take an entertaining turn and Zilla pops out a winner comment. Continue reading

What We Saw at the Hot Dog Joint

If you’re looking for the Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop post, click here!

I had a terrible craving for a hot dog this week.

While any hot dog probably would have done the trick, I figure it’s best to go with the tried and true in a case like this. Since we were out running errands anyway, the Hub and I decided to take Kidzilla to a favorite local hot dog joint – one that is celebrating its 90th year in business this year.

This place is great. It’s a local tradition. It seems as though everyone in town has gone to school with some member of the family who owns it. The woman behind the counter has been serving up lunch there since I was in high school. The décor and the menu are both pretty much the same as they’ve always been. OK, the décor may be as modern as the ’70s, but I would hazard a guess that the menu hasn’t changed much in all the time they’ve been open.

My Grandfather loved this joint. He taught us the finer points of eating cheese dogs with “everything” chased by a cold chocolate milk and a Tastykake® for dessert. Sounds strange, I know, but if you tried it you’d agree it’s the only way to go. Continue reading

The Great Clean and Purge Project – Week Five Update

We’re getting down to the nitty gritty now, folks.

And some of it is pretty gritty. But remember that we’re talking deep clean, here. Like a major spring cleaning on steroids.

This week, the BIG tackle was the stovetop and the oven. That was a major job, but after various stages of the process spread out over about five days, we finally may have hit success.

Continue reading

TToT – Dashing Off Again

I would much rather be in bed falling asleep right now than writing my TToT list.

Can’t blame a girl for being honest. But the truth is that if I don’t do this now – quickly – I won’t do it at all because there won’t be a moment to do so. We’ve been busy this week in lots of great ways, which I’m figuring have to add up to ten great things for which I am thankful.

For starters, despite a few days where the plans just got totally derailed, we tackled several big jobs around the house. Come back Monday or Tuesday for The Great Clean and Purge Project update for more details.

Some of the reasons we got derailed this week are good ones. I want to leave it at that for the moment. Stay tuned. (Sorry, Dyanne – I know you hate when I leave you hanging…) Continue reading

The Great Clean and Purge Project – Week Four Update

This week has been kind of a filthy one.

We’ve tackled some of the bigger and – for lack of a better word – ickier jobs. We worked on the “deep clean” phase of The Great Clean and Purge Project. These are the jobs nobody likes to do. Saddle up and ride with me, friends… Continue reading

TToT – Busy, Tired, and Satisfied

Emerson said, “A man is relieved and gay when he has put his heart into his work and done his best, but what he has said or done otherwise shall give him no peace.”

We have had a busy week. We have poured our hearts into our work and the sense of satisfaction, coupled with the physical exhaustion, is overwhelmingly pleasant.

We kicked off the week with an early morning appointment on Monday and haven’t really stopped since. I’m going to dive in with gratitude for having a full life. I didn’t quite realize it was Friday and thus time for the TToT until I saw Sarah’s post pop in. Is it wrong that I love the part of summer where I start to forget what day it is? Continue reading

When Life Gets in the Way – A Preamble

Two years ago, my Husband and I halfheartedly talked about considering a new start. Perhaps one or both of us were ready to think about looking for something new, something that would allow us to stretch and to grow.

We very tentatively started to broach the subject of what we might like to do, where we would look, and what the realistic possibilities were for either or both of us to move on to something new. I don’t know that either one of us was really ready, really serious. But we had a few hesitant and hypothetical conversations.

Just a few short weeks later, the decision was made for us. My Husband’s job was eliminated. There was no suspicion. No warning. No notice. And in an instant, everything changed. Continue reading

The Great Clean and Purge Project – Week Three Recap

You know, as I’m looking at that title, I’m wondering what kind of people need three weeks to clean and purge their home?

Apparently, we do. Oh, right…and we’re not finished yet.

In our defense, we had kind of a light week in the Clean and Purge department. We did not plow through the process with quite as much gusto as we did during the packing and unpacking phases. We took some time off for birthday celebrating, appointments and errands, doing our CSA pickup at the farm and picking our own beans, snap peas, and herbs, celebrating the Fourth of July holiday and watching fireworks, and taking Zilla for her very first school uniform fitting. (My heart!) Continue reading

TToT – Continued Progress

It doesn’t seem possible that a week has passed already. I can’t say I’m happy about how fast these days have flown. I need this summer to stretch long before us…we have a lot to do.

And that’s exactly what we’ve been doing this week – a lot. We’ve continued to work on our Great Clean and Purge Project. Many things are progressing well in that category – those who are intrigued can check back Monday for the week three update. It feels so good to be getting these projects (which are one HUGE project) taken care of and this feels like a fresh start in a lot of ways. Continue reading