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Summer of ’17 (Part I)

September 9, 2017
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I am so behind on my journaling. I am going to try to combine a bunch of my summer photos in a couple of big huge picture posts. Here y’go!

Fourth of July

was a lot of fun.

We experienced Red White & Boom at Audubon Park, and I loved it so much there I want to make it my yearly Red White & Boom tradition.




Thanks for this photo, Matt.


The next day we went to the Dublin fireworks and saw Peter Frampton live! After the show we were so close to where they set off the fireworks it was probably literally one of the very best displays I’ve ever experienced. I was mesmerized!









Park of Roses Picnic

I adore this park.



Photo Cred: Rebecca

Photo by Rebecca

Photo Cred: Rebecca

Photo by Rebecca

Photo Cred: Rebecca

Photo by Rebecca

Attempted Potterfest

For just a minute (30 seconds?) Eleanor was Hedwig and Adry was Dumbledore!




But Potterfest was a bust. It pretty much went like this:


A trip to Grandpa’s Cheesebarn and Sweeties made up for it for some of us!





Adry at Niagra Falls with his dad and Grandma Ellwood

Adry at Niagra Falls with his dad and Grandma Ellwood



Me n' My Girl

Me n’ My Girl

Eleanor learned how to help with household chores (and enjoyed splashing in a pool and visiting Carl the Turtle and other fun things) with Grandma Martin this summer!


She also had many great adventures with Aunt Alexz while she was on summer break!


And Grandpa Sanders, too!


Dress enhanced by Grandma Martin

Dress enhanced by Grandma Martin

Adry on Lake Eerie during a trip with his dad

Adry on Lake Eerie during a trip with his dad



Spoiled by Grandma Sanders– new dress up shoes and clothes just because


And although Jazz and Ribs Fest was stressful this year, this full arch double rainbow (can’t make out the second rainbow in these pics) was unforgettable.



The Bunny Water Park/ Mt Vernon Water Park










We took a trip to Mount Vernon for Maya’s first birthday party. The kids got to play with Logan and Lilly (my cousin’s son and niece) at the water park up there. We had a lot of fun!






Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Independence Day Rooftop Swimming

July 8, 2010
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Les got a room at Renaissance Hotel so that we could spend the day swimming in the rooftop pool.

Mom and Hutch with Adry, walking the city to the hotel

It was glorious.

Yes, even the hot tub was glorious! Not too hot.

Adry had a blast squeezing his water ball on people’s heads. Mer is his victim here.

Hutch was lookin’ niiiiiice!


Sunning Hutch. It was so cool being surrounded by all the buildings. I am such a city girl. But I’ll say otherwise when I post pictures of our 4 day camping trip next week. I need both city AND nature, that’s what I need.

He had so much fun

View from Renaissance pool

I wanted to get a shot of the flags and the statehouse for Independence Day.

Mom is warming up from a cool swim. When the sun went down the overhead lights came on. It was a PERFECT night. Perfect. I could have stayed the night right there at the pool on those comfy couches with the perfect slight breeze. Pizza was eaten and cards were played.

Adry is winding down from a full day of play by watching Baby Einstein on my phone.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Red White & Boom 2010

July 6, 2010
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(Half of these photos are courtesy of Hutch.)

I have to make sure I take plenty of pictures of myself after I take the time to actually do my makeup.

See!? Makeup! Eyeshadow, eyeliner, lipstick! But then I ran out of time to do my hair, so up it went in wet pigtails in two seconds. And I also ran out of time to find a decent outfit, so I ended up in leggings with holes in them… But hey! My makeup was done!


Jacob, Dad, and Adry are watching Step Dancers in the children’s area.

Adry was pretty impressed.

I was, too. I love Step Dancing.


Stroller Friendly

We are watching the Fourth of July Parade, which left much to be desired. But Adry enjoyed what few bands there were, and he especially LOVED the horsies that walked by. As soon as he saw them he began bouncing up and down on dad’s neck saying, “OH GOSH! OH GOSH! OH GOSH!”


Then we enjoyed some music at the stage. I think his name was Jared Mahone? And he and his band were really tight! I really did enjoy it!





Our beautiful city, almost dusk.


The Music Stage




And when the sun went down we found a great spot by the water, right under the fireworks. It was an awesome display– the PERFECT, clear day for a fireworks show. So awesome. Adry Padry made Dad, and then me, hold our hands tight over his ears and he watched the entire time… hardly looked away. And for days afterwards he talked about the “ihwoks” and the “boom booms”.

I had a marvelous time.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

The Rest To Date

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June 13 AP 164– Discussions with my dad about anything. He opens my mind and challenges me to a new way of thinking each time we talk.  Also, Momma-Daughter time curled up on the couch with ice cream and a movie.

June 14 AP 165– Fascinating scientific discoveries. T-rex blood cells.  Hello!- Awesome!  Genetics- alleles and switches and loci and how the tiniest variations can make huge differences… Read this: Taxonomic Significance of Racial Classification

“Lewontin used his analysis of variation to mount an un-
justified assault on classification, which he deplored for social

“A proper analysis of human data reveals a substantial
amount of information about genetic differences. What use,
if any, one makes of it is quite another matter. But it is a
dangerous mistake to premise the moral equality of human
beings on biological similarity because dissimilarity, once
revealed, then becomes an argument for moral inequality.
One is reminded of Fisher’s remark in Statistical Methods
and Scientific Inference(12) ‘that the best causes tend to
attract to their suppor the worst arguments, which seems to
be equally true in the intellectual and in the moral sense.’”

And how you can follow early human migration and trace ancestry through DNA…. and the light that DNA sheds on natural selection and adaptation. This world and our bodies are AMAZING and I love learning about it!

June 15 AP 166– Our exciting new fishes! Frederick A.W. Bailey, the late Mr. Brown, Eyez, and Diab(lo)

June 16 AP 167– Learning how to create and host my own website… and code and file sharing 101

June 17 AP 168– NAPS!

June 18 AP 169– Dreams and goals. However seemingly impossible they are to obtain, I like to reach for them and work towards them.

June 19 AP 170– Avatar: The Last Airbender the series. Its story and charm.

June 20 AP 171– My dad is here for me to spend time with and talk to, whenever I need him, and Ben is a great dad to Adry.

June 21 AP 172– Summer! Summer soltice- long days, water fun, sunshine, and seasonal festivities.

June 22 AP 173– Baby fever. Also, that Ben is a devoted father who thinks his son is the most awesome thing to walk the earth.

June 23 AP 174– Adry’s new language development and communication skills. I am beginning to be able to reason with him!

June 24 AP 175– Living so close to the dollar movies.

June 25 AP 176– Dozing with babies.

June 26 AP 177– An awesome, wonderful, amazing day of complete pampering from My brother, Matt. Breakfast at Mimi’s Cafe, a Grand Manicure at Charle’s Penzones, awesome ice cream from jeni’s, and an impromptu adorable movie at the dollar theater. Thank you, Matt. I needed that.

June 27 AP 178– Matthew’s birthday lunch and Food Woman MEATLOAF. MMMM!

June 28 AP 179– A wonderful family zoo trip with babies. Pictures to come soon.

June 29 AP 180– My son amazes me every day. He has been pretend-reading books and gets many of the words spot-on because he remembers them from when I read to him. He is beginning to tell jokes and develop a sense of humor (like every letter in the alphabet is “A”- HAH HAH HAH, HILARIOUS!) Oh my goodness, I just love to hold him and pray time stands still so I can take him all in. He is also growing physically stronger and more coordinated– he has a great pitching arm, and loves to shoot hoops. He is a beautifully created being and I am so blessed.

June 30 AP 181– Marriage counseling sessions (Fireproof Series), Week Two and going well. (I winced when I copied this appreciation, but in hindsight I still believe this is true. I’ll just leave it at that.)

July 1 AP 182– Ben got a second interview.

July 2 AP 183– Fireworks! Columbus’s Red White and Boom! Pictures coming soon!

July 3 AP 184–
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life

Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

I haven’t felt anger in this current situation. Not once. Not even for a second. Towards anyone. Embarrassment, yes. Deep, deep disappointment, yes. Disgust, yes. There is no bitterness, there is no grudge, there is no hate. There is heartbreak and numb depression. Upon discovery I wailed. I have never wailed before and I didn’t even recognize my own voice. Ben came in and held me. I tried to get up and my knees gave out and I collapsed on the floor.  All the while I’ve had a peace in my soul, and unconditional love and endless forgiveness for everyone, no matter how I should decide to handle this.  And I believe the folks most intimately involved (S. and B.) are responding in perfect appropriateness to my reactions and the situation.  I hope it doesn’t sound twisted when I say I appreciate that… and them… for doing so.

We are ALL human and we ALL sin and fall short. Yes, some sins have far greater natural consequence than others, but where there is confession and repentance, there is grace and redemption.

July 4 AP 185– Our great nation’s independence.

July 5 AP 186– Toy Story 3. AAAAW!  Adry actually let me watch the whole thing, too, which was superb!  And yes I DID cry!  I would have burst out in tears like a big sappy baby, but gosh darnit, I used up all my energies to hold it in because I was too embarrassed.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

Independence Day Festivities

July 7, 2009
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I didn’t get very many pictures of this year’s July 4th happenings… just several randoms. I had a pretty good weekend. I was really depressed, but… life goes on. And I am just starting to get to the age at which caffein actually has a physical affect on me, like a drug– I need to invest in some green tea, as I hate coffee and Coke is delicious but *they* say it’s bad for you, pshaw ;-P, and Sweet Tea has a lot of sugar and cals. So, I need to be one of those green tea drinkers. One of THOSE green tea drinkers. You know who I’m talking about. They usually have an arrogance of ‘I’m filling my body with antioxidants as you waste your life away filling up on preservatives and carbonation and empty calories. I’ll live to a miserable 96 years old, while you will drop dead at a mere 70. So there. *nose in air*’ about them.

Let’s see…
July 3rd I went with me momma and Ben and Adry to Red White and BOOM, which was pretty good this year.
Here are Adry and I in the car on our way:
He was so excited, as you can see.
Walking downtown to get a spot for the fireworks

Hey, whatever keeps him happy.

He loved the fireworks. He stared at them in absolute awe, nearly the entire time.



Benny made breakfast for us the morning of July 4th

And then there was much playing outside to be done.


“BALL!” Adry spotted a ball in Pastor Ken’s yard, and was determined to get it:

I think the clearest word I’ve heard Adry say up to this point in his life (besides ‘mom’) is “bubble”. He is very fond of all “b” words, as they are easy for him to say. Today he mimicked my great grandmother saying “I’m busy, busy, busy!” (She was trying to explain to him that she was too busy to talk to him, LOL- He LOOVES to just stare at her and talk to her nonstop, and for some reason this is a source of frustration for her. It all amuses me so much.)

My toes were patriotic.

My fingers matched. I do enjoy being a nerd, incase you wanted to know.

MMM, these things are so good. My mother’s strawberry lemonade. mmmmm. mmmm.

My dad, setting up for badminton/volleyball, and glow-in-the-dark/light-up corn hole! The light up corn hole excited me a little.

Mom on the grill.

Adry is such a graceful eater. He enjoys his “c-kyyys” (cracks me up, he asks for cookies all the time… without using vowels. No voice necessary.)

The night of July fourth I went with my mom to Picnic with the Pops. I already wrote a little entry about that. It was a very relaxing, pleasant evening. The different Cbus suburbs (I’m guessing Grandview, The Park of Roses, and I’m not sure who else) set off fireworks so close to the Picnic grounds that we were surrounded on three sides with fireworks. It was kind of cool. Then Picnic with the Pops had their own little display of course. I was with mom, Les, and Les’s mom, and we just chilled and ate garlic hummus, pita bread, and fresh cherries. YUM!

Sunday the fifth my family played games outside during the day. Later in the evening we blasted some rad Jamaican music 😉 (compliments of Becca, who just got back from a Jamaica mission trip and brought the CD back with her. She’s so cute) and ate some homemade strawberry ice cream that my dad made. MMMM. (We have a hand crank homemade ice cream maker…. It was gooood stuff.) and then when it got dark out we had hotdogs and smores around a campfire. And there was also a late badminton game and glow-in-the-dark corn hole because who could resist glow-in-the-dark corn hole? The boards lit up and the beanbags had glow sticks, lol.

And, as a side note, I am positively in LOVE with Upper Arlington and Grandview Heights. I love where we live right now (as in the area: Godown Road- we can throw a rock into UA) We are a 3 minute drive from all of the UA libraries and parks and shopping centers, and it is a pretty city with so much character and a lot to offer. The parks are awesome, the library is rated #1 in the nation for serving a population of 25000 or less (Columbus metropolitan is #1 in the nation overall)… I would love to raise Adry here, but obviously I would have to sell my soul in order to pay the taxes, so I’ve been carefully considering raising Adry in Grandview, because Grandview is also such a cute little town PLUS it is so close to campus and the city and everything. But I’ve also been considering the possibility that, down the road a few years from now when we are in the market to buy a house, we could find a home with Columbus taxes and UA city schools. THAT would be amazing. I don’t know- I’m glad I have time to think about it. I want to be settled in a home by the time Adry is 7. That’s how old I was when my parents bought our home on Goldfield in Hilliard, and I was a perfect age. That gives me 6 years to think think think and research and find the perfect place to raise my kids. All I ask for is at least three bedrooms, couldn’t care less about square feet or # of stories (although I always thought those modest-looking split level houses were super homey and cute), a safe neighborhood suited for neighborhood pals and friend-making, a good school district, and a decent yard for playing.

Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal

July 4, 2009
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I wish I didn’t have such a melancholy disposition.
I’m coming to terms with the fact that I’ll never be a cheery person. I will never be sociable, I will never be chatty, I will never be charming and friendly.

I will always be introverted, awkward, pessimistic, melancholy. That’s just me.

But I take solace in the fact that no matter how gloomy I feel, I nearly always deeply enjoy the raw beauty of this world. There is beauty is nearly everything, except selfishness and evil.

Tonight I huddled under my mom’s oversized sweatshirt at a damp and rainy Picnic with the Pops, listening to the Columbus Symphony Orchestra. They sounded great. There were fireworks while children and adults alike danced with sparklers to ‘Stars and Stripes Forever’. A blond-haired, blue-eyed little boy buzzed past our picnic space with arms outstretched, announcing that he was a “fire jet!”. I missed my baby, and thought about him at home, bundled up in a million blankets in his crib because that’s how he likes to sleep… I wondered what he’ll be like when he is older. And then the orchestra played:

I see trees of green, red roses too
I see them bloom, for me and you
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world.

I see skies of blue and clouds of white
The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world.

The colors of the rainbow so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces of people going by
I see friends shaking hands saying how do you do
They’re really saying, I love you.

I hear babies crying, I watch them grow
They’ll learn much more than I’ll never know
And I think to myself, what a wonderful world

Louis Armstrong:

Brudda Iz’s Over the Rainbow/ Wonderful World Medley:

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Categories: Ciao Bella Vita : Daily Journal