Saturday, May 31, 2014

May 2014 Round Up

Addendum, Dec 31, 2014: Please forgive the lack of any other round ups in 2014. I thought I was going to at least go back and do February through April when I decided to go ahead with May, but that never happened, nor did any others for the remainder of the year.

From the 2011 Year of Memories Brag Book by Dani Mogstad

What did I read this month?
Not a ton of reading this month. Mostly stitching. I've started several books, but none are really "sticking."

What movies and/or tv shows did I watch this month?
* TV Time: All done with standard TV shows! Summer shows should start back next month, though I'm not exactly sure what starts when.
* New Films: Um, have I seen any new films? I know, summer movie season has started, and we haven't seen not one single thing! We're behind 3-4 movies already, and with as crazy as our June will probably be, I don't see us making it any time soon. Very frustrating. Oh wait, there was one movie: How to Steal a Million, with Audrey Hepburn and Peter O'Toole. It was okay, but Charade is better.
* Old Favorites: We haven't even had movies on in the background much this month. Prince of Egypt, Treasure Planet, Planet of the Apes (the original), Rush Hour, Pacific Rim (not really a favorite, but we had it on for a while).

What fun things did I do with my family and/or friends?

It was so great to see my grandmother for Mother's Day. We hadn't seen her in over a year due to her starting cancer treatment in November and not really having the immune strength to entertain visitors (particularly the notorious disease carrying children and parents there of). We also saw my grandfather and put on a family baseball game for his entertainment over Memorial Day.

What gifts did I give and/or receive? What special or unusual purchases did I make?

I received some jewelry from my grandmother. She is apparently going through her "stash" since she's been homebound, and she gave me some lovely pieces. My favorite is this absolutely gorgeous ring! It's costume jewelry (not precious or semi-precious stones), but that doesn't matter. I absolutely love it! One of the few advantages of having very large hands for a woman: I can wear big honkin' rings.

I got new glasses, which seemed to have solved my headache problem. We also finally upgraded our phones. Hubby got a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and I got a Galaxy S5. Yes, this is an accomplishment because I *hate* learning a new phone, but mine was to the point that it wouldn't even hold a charge for 12 hours, and several of the recent app updates were extremely slow. I know it's new and fancy and all, but I'm going to miss my slide out keyboard (even if the new phone is much thinner and lighter, and still needs a case that is more "me").

What illnesses or health concerns did I have?
We all managed to stay pretty healthy this month. (And yes, I waited until June to type that sentence, just in case!) Unless sitting on your feet like this counts as a health concern? (It doesn't now, but it might later in life! LOL)

What new things and Pinterest pins I try this month?
Squeezed in a few recipes this month, though I'm not sure if I'm going to make my quota of 101 by the end of June. I should have taken a picture of the Taco Stuffed Shells; they were pretty!

What were my accomplishments this month?

Finishing my Midsummer Night's Fairy was by far my greatest accomplishment. I'm so thrilled she is done! Don't feel like I accomplished much else, honestly. My 101 Days (version 3) will be up in less than a month, and I won't get nearly as much done as I hope. Oh well, there's always Version 4!

What were Luke's accomplishments this month?

He passed the CRCT! He actually took the test in April, but we got his scores in May. He was comfortably in the "meets the standard" category for every section of the test, and even got "exceeds the standard" in two sections, social studies (?!!) and math (duh). He was also on the Principal's Honor Roll (all A/S) for the sixth straight semester.

Luke also received his baseball participation medal. The coach gave the stats on each boy. Luke had the highest batting average on our team (15/16) and was one of two with no strikeouts.

What were this month's disappointments or frustrations?
A bunch of little ones, both work and home, including one very spectacular child meltdown during mid-month, but nothing really worth mentioning.

Anything else noteworthy to record?
Can't think of anything.

Monthly Round Up concept courtesy of Katie the Scrapbook Lady, tweaked by me.
Currently feeling: finally rounding again in 2014

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Wordless Wednesday - May 28, 2014

Currently feeling: putting on a show for Great-Grandpa

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Whistle While You Work

Copyright: yaryhee / 123RF Stock Photo

I am rapidly coming to the end of the 1001 days for my 101 Things in 1001 Days Version 3 Challenge. One of the items on the list was to learn to whistle very loudly. My grandfather could do it, and I've always wanted to learn, thus why I put it on the list to start with. Some people can do it with just their mouths, and some people use their fingers (on one hand or two). I didn't think it would be all that difficult to learn. Boy, was I wrong!

For the last week or so, I've spent my lunch break (yes, I'm working from home) watching YouTube videos on how to do this. I keep hoping the next one will explain it in that slightly different way that makes it "click" for me. So far, all I've managed to do is make myself very lightheaded, make my whole face hurt, make the underside of my tongue hurt (I have long fingernails), get covered in slobber, and be a dismal failure. One single time, I managed to get a tone out, and I have not been able to replicate it to save my life. If I watch one more video that says "all you have to do is....," I'm going to scream. I'm doing that! It's just not working for me. I'll keep trying, but I am terribly disappointed. I really expected it to be much easier to learn!
Currently feeling: embarrassingly unsuccessful

Saturday, May 24, 2014

One Crazy Summer

Copyright: smeagorl / 123RF Stock Photo

We have an incredibly busy summer planned this year! We have some kind of event nearly every weekend for the next 6-7 weeks (some local, some not). Everything is fun and for something good, so I know we will enjoy it and be glad we did it, but we will also be exhausted come mid-July. Consequently, please forgive me if the blog is rather quiet for the next few weeks. I will try to pop in when I can to say hi and post a few pictures for your entertainment. If I get really ambitious, I'll get some stuff pre-written and set to auto-post while I'm running around. Wishing you some fun time in the next few weeks! See you in a month or so.
Currently feeling: ready for fun and sun (with appropriate SPF, of course)

Friday, May 23, 2014

Third Grade Comparison

Not much growth this year, at least in terms of height. His feet are bigger (you can see that even in the picture), and his frame/bone structure has gotten bigger. You can see that his arms and legs aren't as thin (his arms look a little longer to me, but that might just be slightly different camera angles), and his shoulders have squared off a little. I know he's gained 4-5 pounds (2-ish kg), though he is still very slender.

I don't mind that he has slowed down for a year. It has been nice not having to buy him new clothes every 2-3 months! We don't want it to stop for too long, though. Over six feet (1.8 m) is the goal! Nothing like setting a goal you have no control over, LOL. Can't wait to see what the next year will bring!
Currently feeling: intrigued

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Wordless Wednesday - May 21, 2014

Currently feeling: ready to build a paper airplane (school project)

Sunday, May 18, 2014

I can see clearly now the headaches are gone....

Copyright: voronin76 / 123RF Stock Photo

A few weeks ago, I started having headaches. Not just one or two days, but multiple times per day. Sometimes they were just mild and annoying, but other times, they were pretty intense. I was afraid I was having blood pressure problems again, though with the weight I've lost, it had been quite good for the last several months. I scheduled an appointment with my regular doctor to have it checked out, but due to my schedule, I couldn't find a convenient day for me until the end of the month.

On unrelated note, I also noticed that I was having trouble reading street signs when I took a "short cut" a week or two ago, so I made an appointment with the eye doctor. I mean it had only been, um, three years. (Oops.) In fact, the last time was for the same reason, right before we went to Boston. Again, we will be going to Boston in a few weeks, and I didn't want to wait too late, since last time they had to order my lenses and it took 2-3 weeks for them to come in. This time, I rearranged my schedule so there would be time to see the eye doctor and wait for the lenses. Yet again, "due to my age," my eyesight had improved to the point that I could not focus, about half a diopter in each eye. (That's a lot!) I probably hadn't really noticed it until lately when I pulled my stitching back out (for the first time in about a year). I had the lenses replaced in my existing frames and went about my business.

About three days later, I noticed my head didn't hurt. At all. Not only did it not hurt, it hadn't hurt for a few days. What changed? My glasses! I had no idea something so "small" and simple could cause so much trouble! Makes me wonder if I've been thinking eyesight changes were BP and/or stress headaches for years now. I will definitely have that checked out first from now on! Thought I would pass along my new knowledge. The more you know....

Currently feeling: grateful

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Finished! Midsummer Night's Fairy

She's FINALLY done! Midsummer Night's Fairy by Mirabilia, started sometime early in 2001 (maybe late 2000), finished May 17, 2014. 13+ years in the making, minus about 8 years when I didn't stitch (something about having a baby/toddler/child).

Click to biggify.

Cross stitch and beads on 28 ct Antique Lavender Permin Linen. Probably about 100 hours of work. She measures about 12 in x 19 in (31 cm x 48 cm). Haven't washed and pressed her yet, as she still has some traveling to do.

Click to biggify.

This is only my second Mirabilia finish, and the first one I get to keep for me! I am absolutely thrilled! I'm stitching both of her "sisters" (Adia and Titania), so I'll wait until those are also done to have her framed along with the other two so they can coordinate. Hopefully it won't take another 13 years!

Currently feeling: ridiculously excited!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

2014 Summer Movie Preview

Copyright: borusikk / 123RF Stock Photo

This is the super-short version (sadly sans pictures), since I'm so late getting it out there. As always, this is not every film coming out this summer, just the ones that hold some interest for me.

  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (May 2) - Not feeling this one, but I'm sure we'll see it anyway. I suspect too many villains (same problem as the later Toby McGuire films).
  • Legends of OZ (May 9) - Animated, not too sure about this one. Others I'd rather see, but always keeping my eyes open for good kids' movies.
  • Godzilla (May 16) - I can't believe this is actually getting decent reviews. We are seriously considering making an effort to catch it in the theater.
  • Million Dollar Arm (May 16) - Interesting premise (bringing Indian cricket players to the US to play baseball), and we're suckers for a good sports movie.
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (May 23) - We truly enjoyed First Class; hoping this one can live up with the blended cast.
  • Maleficent (May 30) - Yes, I'm excited! My favorite Disney character comes to life. Trying not to be irked about the lack of green fire in the previews.
  • Edge of Tomorrow (June 6) - Apocalyptic sci-fi Groundhog Day. I really like Emily Blunt, so we'll probably try to catch this one.
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2 (June 13) - The sequel to one of our favorite movies. All three of us are excited about this one; definitely the only one Luke has expressed real interest in (well, besides Spider-Man, which is a big no for him).
  • Transformers: Age of Extinction (June 27) - Just not sure if we can do this one; the last one was SOOO bad. The only thing in its favor is Stanley Tucci, but even that isn't enough to drag us to the theater, I don't think.
  • Earth to Echo (July 4) - Don't know much about this one. Looks like maybe this generation's Goonies meets E.T.
  • Fast & Furious 7 (July 11 April 2015) - Christine reminded me that this got moved to April 2015, due to the death of Paul Walker. I hear they left Paul Walker in the movie, using CGI and stand-ins to fill in where needed. Can't believe they've made 7 of these! I think I saw 2 or 3.
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (July 18) - I actually enjoyed Rise of the Planet of the Apes much more than I expected; not sure I'll make it to the theater for this one, but I'll see it at some point.
  • Jupiter Ascending (July 25) - Despite the fact that Channing Tatum makes me want to vomit, the premise is interesting, and it is a Wachowski Siblings film. We'll put it in the wait and see/definite maybe category.
  • Hercules (July 25) - I may not like Channing Tatum, but will admit to being a Dwayne Johnson fan. Toss in John Hurt, Ian McShane, and Joseph Fiennes, and how can this be anything but a hoot?! Like Scorpion King, I'm sure it would be much better if we caught the 1 AM showing! LOL
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (August 1) - Marvel is pushing out into deep space. Let's see how they do. The previews look like they might be trying a little too hard.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (August 8) - They're sure keeping a lid on this one, which is not generally a good sign. Can't really get a feel for it. Will play wait and see.
  • The Expendables 3 (August 15) - We haven't seen the first one yet, but they keep expanding the cast in new and fascinating ways, so it's worth a mention.
  • The Giver (August 15) - Interesting premise. In a "perfect" world, one boy is chosen to experience "real life." I'd like to see/hear more about this one.
That's all I've got. Let me know if I missed anything you are really looking forward to. See you at the movies!
Currently feeling: ready for some popcorn!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Wordless Wednesday - May 14, 2014

Currently feeling: fascinated by this bird walking vertically on the wall

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Natural

The kids received their participation medals at tonight's baseball banquet. Out of 11 players on our team, Luke had the highest batting average (15/16) and was one of two on our team with no strikeouts all season. The team finished 4-3. You would absolutely never know that it was his first time ever playing baseball. I guess there is a bit of natural talent there.

Currently feeling: proud

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mother's Day 2014

We got to see my grandmother today for the first time since she started her cancer treatment (back in November). She looks wonderful! It was such a precious Mother's Day gift, for all of us.

Me, my son, my mother, and her mother (and my husband in the back)

Currently feeling: lovely

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Wordless Wednesday - May 7, 2014

Currently feeling: legging it out at first

Sunday, May 04, 2014

Star Wars Day - Georgia Tech Style

Georgia Tech clearly understands how to celebrate Star Wars Day! I love my alma mater. May the Fourth be with you.
Currently feeling: strong with the force