Monday, November 30, 2015

Visiting Yorktown

Yorktown Virginia
There is a battlefield maintained by the National Park Service.
A Victory Center Museum.
A lovely board walk area full of shops along the York River.
And more, I have not spent nearly enough time in Yorktown...

We went over Thanksgiving weekend with our cousins who were visiting from Texas. 9 cousins ages 17 to 6 - great fun!

york river, virginia, yorktown

revolutionary war, united states, colonial america, doctor, yorktown
Regarding Medicine of the Revolutionary War

revolutionary war, united states, yorktown, musket, victory center
Weapons of the Revolutionary War

Kitchen, he says it would only take hours to dig out


dataxstream golf shirt, yorktown, virginia, revolution,

to visit the Yorktown Victory Center you'll need to purchase a pass
it is $16.75 for a ticket to the Victory Center for an adult
there are also combination passes including the National Parks, and 
the other two living history museums in the area

I'm linking with Sally for Blue Monday: Sally and friends I hope you find blue sky, blue water ways, blue clothing (blue jackets worn by revolutionary soldiers)

Monday Morning: Coffee & a Book

I recently read "Growing Up Black in White" by Kevin Hofmann
you can find it on Amazon here
and Amazon's description:
Growing Up Black in White is author Kevin Hofmann's gift to the American public seeking answers to so many questions about what it is to be raised in a racially diverse household. Born to a white mother and black father in Detroit in 1967, only weeks before the terrible race riots that brought a major city to its knees, the author was taken to a foster home and then adopted by a white minister and his wife, already the parents of three biological children. In this fascinating memoir, Hofmann reveals the difficulties and joys of being part of this family, particularly during a time and in a location where acceptance was tentative and emotions regarding race ran high and hot. Hofmann shares with readers the pressures and joys of being part of a family that navigated through tumultuous waters, and came out the victors in an old and oft-fought battle. This is a book that offers insight, humor, and plenty of hope.

The book was suggested to me. Being a white mom with children who are not the same race I am, I was curious to read Kevin's account of growing up as a black boy with white parents. I am sure not every experience he had is one that my children will live, however I would guess that my children would find commonalities in experience.

I appreciated his voice. I was/am somewhat in awe of some of the choices that his parents made. I am challenged by this book to reconsider some of my choices as a white mother to asian children. For parents, grandparents, godparents or good family friends of transracial adoptees I would suggest reading this book to hear Kevin's perspective and consider how to best be an ally to the children.

For people not a part of a transracial adoption triad, I would still recommend this book as an interesting perspective on race relations in the United States from someone who has had the opportunity to experience race from a different perspective.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Bitsy hurt my feelings

Just now...
and those awful can't catch one's breath breaths.

"Little Hawk, come here.
What is the matter?"

he shows up drying his eyes.
"nothin' "

"Don't you lie to me." in that voice only your mother can use.

"Bitsy hurt my feelings."

"Well what happened?"

"She said she' going to marry (the name of my future son-in-law shall be with held.)"

This is not what I was expecting.
"This makes you upset?"

"Yes. She's going to get married and I'll be left [deep awful breath] at [another deep awful breath] h-h-home." he can't even get it out.

"Well, she can't get married for a while. You know, like twenty years or so, and I'm sure it will work out. People grow up, they get married sometimes, it is what they do."


"You might miss her, but you can still see her again."


"You okay?"


yup - gonna tuck this away for a few years so I can pull it out when you are screaming that you hate each other and you can't wait to leave...

Friday, October 23, 2015

still training Thalia

we are working towards our IPO 1
test date is Dec 5th
we have issues... a lot of issues to resolve to pass this test

and there are fewer pictures of the dogs as Jose received orders last spring and is now in NC someplace. Miss him. Miss his dog. Miss the occasional visits with his wife.

But recently we had a visitor and she brought her camera:

Tidewater Schutzhund Club-9714
Trying to get Thalia to work with the dumbell. She hates it. To pass this test she has to retrieve it 3 times. Once just a retrieve, once over an A frame and once over a jump or "wall". So far this is a challenge.

We train with Tidewater Schutzhund Club

Thursday, October 22, 2015

My work room...

The husband ripped apart my basement last month. Rather - he paid someone to rip apart my basement last month. Carpet gone. Furniture gone. Everything out. Then he decided to have the concrete floors polished... so he ripped apart my work room.

When I moved into this house the work room was lavender and whatever color that is - green/yellow ? It is bright.
I let the kids paint over it with left over paint.
That room wasn't a priority and I just worked around it. (well - once it was toned down. I didn't care that the paint job the kids did was spotty - I just couldn't work with that bright green on the walls) It had a work table and shelves and that closet in the back there.

The plan is that when the floor is done, they will cut a door into the side to access the cellar. Then the room will get painted "apple tint" which is a warm white. The husband will rebuild the work table and put back the shelves and then in the far end by the closet add a built in desk table for my very artistic 10 year old to work. She needs a space to leave her projects out that is not her homework space - and that is safe from her sister.

I anticipate this will take months - but I doubt he will make it a priority so I'll be grateful if it takes less than a year.

In the meantime - I rescued my sewing machine but forgot the foot pedal. I'm borrowing my neighbor's in the afternoon. I've got pants for Little Hawk all cut out... 

and here is a sweet photo of a very happy Leo. He is an 8 year old Belgian Malinois that came to live at my house a few months ago. We (the vet and I) think he may be arthritic so we've got him on pain meds. It helps, he gets his energy out without hurting.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September seems to be Roma Tomatoes Month

Mlyons broke a tooth so she stayed home from school yesterday. We went in to see the dentist ( we see Dr. Rana Graham - Montaque at Williamsburg Pediatric Dentists who is awesome ) and it was decided that the best thing was to extract the tooth. (its a baby tooth, it is now cracked in 1/2, she'd loose it in the next 6 - 12 months anyway)

Afterwards we picked up her violin (she will be studying violin as part of her 5th grade studies) and went home for a day of quiet reading.

And a photo shoot in the garden.

I've been sewing (see Whigs & Tories) and experimenting with various patterns. Tried this peasant top - a combination of Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom and Sew Country Chick  (I have the pillow case version cut and ready to sew. And I particularly like Justine's blog as we are like minded in many ways: Inside the Fabric We Sew With )

Mlyons liked the yellow dot fabric from Riley Blake and I had wanted to try to give it a split neck. We agreed on where the elastic should go on the sleeves and I added white ricrac. Mlyons is appreciative of my current ricrac obsession. I need to try the split neck again - I think Crafty Mom has a blog post regarding that - but I do like how the blouse looks with her slacks and boots! And she does too!

whigs & tories, peasant blouse, yellow dot, riley blake, pretty, handmade clothes

peasant top, riley blake, yellow dot, whigs & tories

peasant top, whigs & tories, yellow dot, riley blake, 2015
the morning glories were an issue this year! climbing everything

roma tomatoes, garden, yellow dot, riley blake, peasant top, whigs & tories
Yellow Peasant Top by Whigs & Tories
in other news, Dragon has a concussion from his soccer game on Sunday. Went in for a header on the corner kick and collided with another player, landed hard and slapped his head. Don't think it is a "big" one, he is clear headed. He has a headache and is restricted from activity until the headache is gone and he's been seen by his primary care practitioner. Never boring around here.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Bright Cellars - it is about Wine

I am a wine drinker (and a coffee drinker and a chocolate lover)
I tend towards red wine but I don't have a particular favorite nor the ability to pick out all the nuances of undertones nor the ability to say "oh this is a really good wine" based on anything besides "I like it." I recently discovered via Twitter a start up company called Bright Cellars

And the company offers a little quiz to help determine what kinds of wine you might like. They send it to you (well, you buy it) and then you rate what you liked or didn't like and then they make new suggestions.

So I checked it out. 

I adored the quiz.

Now, to be honest, I don't have a monthly budget for trying out wine so I was a little nervous about signing up, but my "wine concierge" informed me that a bi-monthly subscription was an option and I wanted to help a start up out so I thought - give it three shipments. 

My first shipment arrived with 5 bottles, 2 red & 3 white. 

I tweeted that photo and someone at @brightcellars tweeted back #allyouneediswineandadog

totally. best hashtag ever. 
I knew I liked these kids when the option for which juice do I prefer included "is coffee juice?" but now I love them.

So I have opened two bottles.
A Sauvignon Blanc by Cambridge Cellars 2013
Cabernet Sauvignon/Grenache by Petit Chou 2013

I prefer the red. 
I liked the white better the day after I had opened it. I found it to be a very "clear" taste. 

If you would like to give it a try, they are offering a sweet 1/2 price intro. If you follow my referral link I get credit toward a free bottle. :)