Friday, July 3, 2009

Summer days

We are finally getting settled back into our routine. I arrived back from Kentucky on Monday night and Charlton left for his three day fly-fishing trip on Wednesday. Poor Rylan was very out of sorts for a couple of days, very whiny and throwing tantrums over the littlest things. I thing we really upset his world with our travel schedule and once we were both home again for a few days, he relaxed and became his normal happy self.
We have finally had some warm summer weather which means pool time, even if it is just our $10 Wal-Mart pool in the backyard. Rylan has loved splashing and playing in it, especially when the water warms up in the sun. One day when he was supposed to be enjoying his picnic lunch on the back steps, he peaked his head around the door with a mischievous look on his face. One more step inside and I realized the reason for his goofy grin, he was soaking wet with all his clothes on! He had decided to take a quick swim during lunch.
Caroline is trying very hard to crawl, but still backwards. She can scoot into a sitting position all by herself now, which comes in very handy. Last week she finally cut her first tooth, without much fussing or fan-fare, except for biting me while nursing. Then a few days ago, the second bottom incisor poked through also. Rylan is quite interested in this new development and reminds me, "I have lots of teeth, baby Caroline just has two teeth." (Rylan is cutting his second-year molars, and I can feel a bottom one poking through when I am brave or stupid enough to put my fingers in his mouth.) Caroline has also taken off like a rocket with eating her solids, and I already have to plan for three meals for her. She loves her fruit, yogurt, and sweet potatoes, but will eat the green vegetables too if she is hungry enough.
Last Friday I went garage sale shopping and found another amazing deal. I have some extra space in the corner of my kitchen just perfect for a kid-sized table and chairs. I had been looking casually on Craigslist and even some store websites, but hadn't found anything yet. I thought Rylan would enjoy being able to color or play play-doh there and be able to get up and down whenever he wanted. My other huge reason is that our dining room is carpeted, not exactly a great set-up for mealtimes with a toddler. I would much prefer to wipe up spaghetti sauce, juice spills, and cookie crumbs from a vinyl floor. So, I stopped at this garage sale on a whim and almost missed the table because other stuff was piled on top of it. Once uncovered, I found a sturdy, beautifully made light wood table with two chairs. It had been well-loved and enjoyed by this family's children, with quite a few blue paint splotches on the top, but with some sanding and many coats of polyurethane, it looked like new! Best part is, it only cost me $25 and I already had the sand-paper and varnish at home. I'll post some pictures of "before" and "after". Rylan was thrilled with "his" table and as soon as we came home I let him eat his lunch on it. Then I had to hold it hostage for a few days until the varnish dried and he wasn't happy about that!
While I was busy with the table, I had to put my other projects on hold for a few days. Just this week, I re-coated the front porch railings and swings with a new coat of the stain/varnish combo to protect it from Colorado's weather. We have had such an unusually wet spring, that I was fortunate to be able to get my painting done before or after our afternoon showers.
I have really enjoyed gardening this year and hope to do more next year. This past week, my tulip leaves finally turned brown and I could pull them up. Last year I planted petunias in their place, this year I decided to try impatiens because we get so much shade from the cottonwood trees in the summer. While I was getting our mulch at Lowe's with Rylan, we spotted a slightly unkempt elderly man wearing an old baseball cap and a long, graying beard. Rylan studied him for a moment and then turned to me, "Look mommy, there's Jesus!" (The man didn't hear us, but it was all I could do to keep from laughing out loud.) While Caroline was taking her nap and Rylan was happily digging in the dirt, I rushed to get all 48 pink and coral flowers planted and mulched. What a great feeling when it was finished, and I have to say my front yard looks lovely with the impatiens in their bed, deep red geraniums blooming in hanging baskets on the porch and freshly stained woodwork. Now I just need a wreath for my newly-painted front door and we will be all finished. And, I really, really want some hummingbirds to visit my feeder. I have been faithfully changing out my nectar each week and have planted colorful flowers to attract their attention, what more do they want?

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