Saturday, April 30, 2011

Popa's Famous Breakfast! 119.365

Ever since I was a little girl, and I am sure it began before that, Popa has made us his famous Polichinkis. Even though it is a lot of work, he loves to make them for us kids.... and Jimmy too. While I was visiting this past month, he was sure to make a nice breakfast! I love my Popa so much and his breakfasts are so special. It's not just about the Polichinkis themselves, but more about how much he cares to make them for us. They are so tasty. I don't hold the record for who can eat the most, and that will remain top secret as to keep the person still liking me. ;) I am known to be able to eat quite a few though! Jimmy loves Popa. He follows him everywhere, especially when food is around. Pops allowed him to have a few bites and boy was The J a happy little dog!

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

As I sit here, a little sleepy, but more excited than sleepy, watching the Royal Wedding, a thousand million thoughts are going through my head. There is so much to process when you are so excited! Waking up at an unnatural hour to  watch attend the wedding was a given for me today. As tired as I have been, I did not care. I don't know when I will see something quite like this again, so it could not be missed. Watching Kate and her father drive to the Church, her unending beautiful smile and that regal wave. She was so beautiful, but she was still Kate. Beautiful as ever! Her dress was stunning. She was stunning. Pippa was stunning and those flower girls, absolutely precious. I adored their dresses. All the women and their hats... Some were a bit silly, but some most were beautiful. Someone that I attended the wedding with suggested that it be mandatory to for the guests at our wedding (ladies only of course) wear hats. What do you think? ;) I loved it when Harry turned around, smiled and turned back to Will and said something to him. I wish I knew what he said. His reaction was just wonderful. And how he just looked over at Kate once she arrived and smiled. Oh I just loved it. And then when Will saw his bride and turned to her with a smile and mouthed what looked like "you look beautiful!!!!" Ahhhhhh. 
Awww, they are saying that at one moment, Prince William (excuse how I refer to him as Will), was biting his upper lip... just like Diana did. :) Kate's ring was a little tight. I hope mine goes on a bit smoother. ;) Oh, and the little boys in the choir. How precious! And Kate was soaking it all in. She looked beautiful and calm and like she was just taking in each and every moment in! Oh, all the thoughts going through my head!
And I just cannot help but think of our upcoming wedding in October. Even before I saw this royal wedding, I envisioned something so special, holy and traditional for us as well. Of course it won't be near this extent, but what meaning has gone into it is what I mean. It is not often these days that people make their wedding ceremony such an important part of the day. It is the most important part! 
I have so much to say, but I just don't know how to get my thoughts in order!! 
I enjoyed going to the wedding with two lovely friends. :) I thought I was attending alone, so it was quite the pleasure. 
Do you think they are going to steal away a secret kiss before the big moment on the balcony? ;)
Maybe I will post again later. The ceremony is still going on and I don't want to miss it. Aww, she just curtsied to the Queen. 

Thursday, April 28, 2011

It's Her Birthday! 117.365

From that very first moment I met my precious sister, I knew I would always love her. With her sweet little smile and golden red hair, her seven year old self completely won me over… without speaking a single word...since she only new "hello" in English.
Eleven years have passed, packed with wonderful memories, and now at eighteen, that girl with sweet smile and golden red hair, still has me won over. I love her dearly and today, on her eighteenth birthday, I wish her all the love and happiness that could possibly fill her heart.

From that sweet little girl, Irma has taken each and every opportunity, the enjoyable, and the incredibly difficult, to continue to grow in life to be the beautiful person she is today. For such a young girl, she has had many major adjustments to make and hardships to overcome. With each and every one, she has pulled through with grace.
Irm, not only are you a wonderful sister to me, but each and every day you are an example, a wonderful one, to your three younger sisters. Though they may give you a hard time here and there or might not want to admit it, I know they treasure you and look up to you. Always be that bright example to them, showing them the right way in life. As you are blessed to have them in your life, all four of us are blessed to have you as our sister.

I may not always be around there at home, but whether you are away at college and I am married and living down South, or we are there together, I will always be here, just a phone call away. I love our little chats; talking about anything from school or the latest person to be sent off one of your favorite shows, and even getting frazzled when we know there was something we had to say and forget (it always happens to us!) to something bothering you that you need to talk about or a really exciting thing that happened… I love them all. I can hear your voice right now, "Guess what Buddy?" And you go on to tell me what's on your mind. I am always here, and always will be, as your best "buddy" and sister.

Irm, you are gorgeous and smart, funny and kind, have a heart of gold and I know would do anything for anyone, you are diligent, talented, creative, hard-working, a wonderful daughter, sister and friend… (the list could go on, but I would run out of room)... 
 Always be yourself, because Irm, you are wonderful! Sometimes we don't always realize it in ourselves, but you are. You are wonderful!
I wish you the happiest eighteen Birthday today! I hope this new year is filled with wonderful memories, lots of fun times and a great amount of love and joy.
I love you Irm.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

I Love This Place 116.365

I'm up north and I have sooo much to do! This is not really a vacation. At all. Today I got to make a quick stop at a place I love amidst all the craziness! There's always little pick-me-ups... even with my long to do lists!

I am sure most of you have heard about the storms down South. Please keep everyone in your prayers. I spoke with Mono and some other friends and they say it is really bad. We won't even recognize part of our town or even part of our property. Thankfully the only damage we had was trees down (over 100 of them), but our town and the town next to us have severe damage.
 I must admit, I was quite scared knowing all that was going on back home today. I was fearful of what could happen to Mono, our close friends and our home. We are very blessed that everyone we know is okay and no one completely lost their homes that we know of. There is house damage, some more severe than others, but apparently all will be well with some fixing up.

Please keep everyone in your prayers!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sharing Sweetness With My Sisters! 115.365

 Meemsy: "Marezy, have you ever had coffee ice cream?" Mare: "Yes, I really like it." Meemsy: "It changes you!"

What a character she is. Apparently she recently discovered the wonders of coffee ice cream and it changed her. ;)

I can neither confirm nor deny if 5 of us sat and ate this entire brownie pan in one sitting. Maybe we did... or maybe not.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Show Me Your Bone 114.365

Whenever Jimmy gets excited to see someone or wants to show extra affection, he brings you his bone. He loves to show you his bone. It's not often that he actually chews on it. I think it is more of a comfort for him to have nearby. He knows when we are about to head out on a trip, and this night I came up to our bed (he sleeps with me) and found this right by my pillow. He's the sweetest little guy. Tonight he is hanging with Mono. He loves to sleep there. I guess he left his bone on my bed as a reminder not to forget him. I'd never forget him, though I'd love to be able to leave him with Mono so the two of them could keep each other company. Good night all. Good night Jimmy!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter! 113.365

 We had a wonderful day today. Started out with a little bit extra sleep, Mass and a light breakfast. Our family festivities began later in the afternoon so we were all able to rest and relax a while... which was much needed and appreciated.

 The Easter Bunny made a trip to our house this year... unlike any other year.

We got some clothes to take on our honeymoon and some fun food items for summer grilling and Pancake Saturdays... and an apron timer for all my baking while I run around trying to get other things done! You don't want to over-bake your cupcakes! ;) 

Apparently the Easter Bunny caught wind that I needed new socks. Thank you, Easter Bunny!
We definitely got some things that we needed, some things that will be put to great use wear in Aruba and some nice things for our new home... like the bunny tail blanket. It is soooooooooooo amazingly soft!

Of course today was not nearly just about presents. We started our day with the most important of all, at Mass, remembering what Easter is truly all about. And a day set aside to enjoy being together as a family is always wonderful. I greatly look forward to having a house of our own to invite friends and family to holiday meals.... Especially Christmas! I know it is Easter and Christmas is a long time away, but I do hope that I can have a big Christmas meal in our new home! I will definitely be blogging all about that when the time comes! I don't know where we will be on Christmas Day this year, hopefully in our new home if family can come visit, but we will see. I will certainly be really doing it up in our home for the entire season!!! 

Back to Easter though... Why do I get so sidetracked and so easily too!

I hope you all had a very happy and blessed Easter Sunday with your family and friends!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Spin on a Childhood Favorite Meal 112.365

I had been following a blog and Lissa switched paths and started a new blog! She cooks gluten free meals, and since I don't have a problem eating gluten products, I normally take her recipes and turn them back into regular recipes. She posted a recipe that I knew I had to try! I changed it up a little bit because I saw some spices I was unsure of and adapted it to my liking. You must go try this. It was soooo good. I think I may make it again real soon. I had wanted to make a big batch of something tasty for Mono to have for the week while I was gone. He comes over to our house for dinner and I sometimes give him lunches for the week so I thought this would be perfect! He was pretty happy with my choice so I bet he will be eating a bit of it. Definitely go visit Lissa's blog and give this recipe a go!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Onward Bound! 111.365

I'm not a light packer. No matter how hard I try, I can never succeed. I need help. Real help. Maybe I should find some sort of LPA (Light Packer Anonymous). I really like to be prepared with multiple choices, a couple pair of shoes, accessories, etc... Nothing over the top, but come on, I'm a girl. ;) Do you have advice for my little issue? I really need to learn for when it comes time for our honeymoon. I will want to pack great combos and accessories, but I can't over pack. Please help. 
This coming week I will be heading out! I can't promise much posting in the upcoming days. I will have a lot going on! I will do my best! Have a Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Being Worn Out Can Be A Good Thing 121.365

I have this prayer book that I love. I have tons of holy cards and notes to remember people's intentions in prayer all stuffed inside. The page edges are worn, the front cover is completely off as well as the back cover hanging by a thread. I really need to put some TLC into it so it doesn't fall apart more than it already has. It is an old book and it is hard to come by. I'd really like to find another one to have, maybe even two. I would like to save them for my daughters in the years to come. It is called the Catholic Girls Guide. I highly recommend it!! Do you have any books you use daily, or at least on a regular basis?

Time Swirls Around Me Faster Than I Can Keep Up With!

Is it just me or does it seem like life is swirling around you with time passing by faster than you can keep up with? Maybe it's just me. 

Some days I have so many random things to get done that I don't even know where to begin. At the end of a day, it may have been chock full of those random little things, yet it seems like nothing got done. Does that ever happen to you? What do you do about it?

I have a list of things to get done over these next few days leading up to Easter Sunday. E-mails to reply to, bills to pay and mail out, laundry, Easter desserts to make, gifts to wrap, bags to pack, rooms to clean, wedding business and business for another big thing going on (you'll know about that shortly too!). 
Being Holy Week the schedule at Church is a bit different than normal so that throws me off as well. Today I am heading to Church at 2 or so for some quiet time (boy, do I need it!) then I go back up for Mass this evening. Tomorrow is Stations of the Cross in the morning and a service in the afternoon. Then Mass on Holy Saturday is in the evening and back to normal for Easter Sunday. This Easter is going to be a bit hectic for our family and will not have as much put into it or prepared for as in the past, but it will still be a lovely and holy day! 

But back to my thoughts, not boring you with my schedule! Though my thoughts may bore you too.  ;)
It seems as though time passes a lot faster now than it had years back. You wake up in the morning and before you know it, it is time to prepare dinner. Where did the entire day go and what happened to the time that I needed to get my whole to do list crossed off!? Some days I want as little as 10 minutes to do something. Like today I want to paint my nails for Easter, but I'm looking at all that has to get done and I wonder where that will fit in. I look at my pile of laundry and ironing and when I am down to the last piece of clothing, half the day seems to be gone!

Someone please tell me this happens to them too and I'm not the only crazy one! Any hints to help get the most out of my time-crazy day?

Off I go to finish the rest of my long list!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Another Crazy Busy Day... Another Random Picture... (109)

And they're open!
My beautiful, bright pink peonies, that is! 

It's been another very full and crazy day. I don't have time to post right now. I don't think I will be getting to bed early, but I still have a lot to do. Maybe if I get done earlier than I thought, I'll blog a little better tonight. I have a feeling the next few days are going to be pretty busy. And the week after Easter, I have a feeling that I will be behind on posts. They may end up all going up at once after the week is over. We shall see. Maybe I will surprise myself... and you! ;) 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Advice Well Taken!

Take a quick step over here to read my post for today!
I will add today's picture (108) ... and yesterdays ... tomorrow when I load my recent pictures to my camera.

Just A Picture... A Very Random Picture. (108)

I don't have time to post, but I did have time to take a quick snack break. ;) I love these "gummies" as my littlest sister fondly calls them. It's been a very busy day, and I wanted to at least put the picture of the day on here. To use one of Mono's words... this picture is sstruuugglinnnggg. He didn't say that about my picture, I did. Just a quick, not well composed picture, but it captures a favorite little snack. :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

I Wish I Had My Grandma's Green Thumb (107)

                                                                                                                                                               I've been thinking about my Grandma a lot today and how much I miss her and all that I wish I could be still learning from her. One of the things I wish I could pick her brain about is her amazing gardening skills. When I think of gardens and flowers and growing from tiny little seeds, I think of her. I wish she was still right down the street to come help me tend to my flowers and make them really flourish like I know she could do!

I Adored Her.

April 18th.
Today marks 11 years, 11 long years, without my Grandma.
It never gets any easier. In fact, as I get older, it may just get harder.
There are so many little moments, and now quite a few big ones, that I wish I could share with her.
Most of all, I wish she was here to meet Mono. She would have loved him and I know he would have really loved her. Who didn't?!
And I wish she was here to see me walk down the aisle on my wedding day in October. If I could have anybody there, it would be her.

We cannot be assured who is in Heaven or when they are getting there, but I'm pretty sure she is. I still pray for her, just in case she isn't there yet, but I have a feeling she's up there, looking down on us all.

Some of you know her, some of you may not, but she was an amazing woman. I am beyond blessed to have had thirteen years with her. I wish it could have been more because there was so much more I would have liked to have learned from her. I hope for those of you that did know my Grandma, that she touched your lives in even a small way. And for those of you who never met her, I wish you could have. You would have loved her... and she would have loved you too!

I'll never forget the years of memories we shared together.
The birthdays and holidays. Summer afternoons swimming with her in the pool. Family vacations. Grocery shopping. Sleep overs. Every little moment, I will remember.
I will never forget when she first got sick or the days I sat there in the hospital praying she would get better real soon.
I will never forget making phone calls of such excitement when we heard she was going to be okay.
I will never forget when she took that turn for the worse.
And I will never forget the last time I saw her… our last good bye.
That last smile. That last little wave.
It took all her energy, but she did it.
I wish the rest of my cousins had that moment with her like I did.
I knew that was it.
It was terribly hard for my little heart to handle, and it still is, but I am so glad we had our goodbye.
And I will never forget the night I heard the news that she was no longer with us.
I will never forget all she taught me.
I will never forget her deep love for her Faith and how she lived it out every single day.
I will never forget her smile. Or her laugh.
I will never forget her endless heart of generosity.

I will never forget her.

Grandma, I will love you forever. I hope you are up in Heaven looking down on all of us. I know I'm not the only one deeply missing you here, but I think you are in a much better place.

I only hope I can become half the woman she was. A heart of gold, of endless giving, of deep and holy faith, of incredible love and smiles galore... and some great cooking/baking might I add.

And don't miss my Wedding! 10:30 am on October 1st! Be there or be square! ;) Bring Grandpa too!!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

What a Sun Shiny Day! (106)

This morning Mono came and picked me up for Sunday Mass and then we went back to his house so he could get some more comfortable clothes on and we headed out to have lunch at a cute little Mexican restaurant in Birmingham. We had never been there before. His co-workers gave him a gift certificate for his birthday and we are just using it now. We had never been to this part of town so we figured we'd do some exploring while we were at it. We ate outside and the ambiance was fabulous! Lunch was amazing and our drive around the town was great! What a fun area!! We will definitely be going back there for some bike rides and runs! I am not sure what Mono had for lunch. It looked good though. I had steak fajitas (one of my favs and it was a great choice!) and loooooved it! Mono ordered a frozen lime margarita and I enjoyed a couple or maybe four or five glasses of sweet tea. I was thirsty and I hadn't had sweet tea in about 3 weeks!!! It was Sunday and a special meal out. 

After lunch and our drive, we headed over to our local Botanical Gardens!

They were having a big plant sale outside of the adorable little gift shop (that I could have spent time... and money... in).

Roses are beautiful. I wish I had those beauties in my garden so I could enjoy some fresh picked bouquets on the table! I have a new found love with the color coral (like some of the roses above). In fact, I saw a lady at lunch (who was wearing an oh so stylish outfit I would have loved to have found in my closet) with a coral skirt. It made me really want to sew myself a nice coral skirt. We will see if I can find some nice fabric! And then, maybe my closet will be perked up with a bright coral skirt! Side note: Do you ever see someone else's outfit that you wish you knew where they got it or how you could copy it!? It happens to me all the time. Like with the lady today, I don't think I would have thought to put her combo together, but it totally worked!

Isn't he cute?! He is a good sport when I make him stop every 2 1/2 seconds to take pictures. And when I take pictures, I always take a bunch at once at different angles. It may just be a sickness. I loved these old tree trunks with the holes in the middle.

The Japanese Gardens were real nice. Even though we've had a lot of rain (especially this past Friday!) the streams and little ponds were bone dry. The gardens were still real nice.

Mono loves the red structures... do they have a specific name?  


He also loves the bamboo so I was sure to snap a few shots of him in what might be his favorite type of forest. :)

I wish I could grow him a little garden of bamboo. Little and bamboo don't really jive well together. When I lived in Maryland, part of our property was over run by bamboo and it took forever to get rid of it. Now I am sure it isn't this same kind, maybe it was, but it was definitely some sort of bamboo. Too bad he didn't know me back then. 



Wouldn't you just love to sit and swing on that swing for a little while? I loved that bird house.  

This was for my Dad. He loves waterfalls. Anywhere, any size, any kind. 

I don't know what type of flower either of these were, but it was love at first sight for us. 

I caught a little bee in the picture!!

Oh how I wish the peonies were in full bloom. I will have to go back to see how my little friends are looking in a couple weeks! Speaking of peonies... I should go take a look at my peonies tomorrow!

I will definitely be back to these gardens soon. More will be in bloom and I will be packing a little bag to stay a while. The lawns are beautiful and I can picture a nice sunny day, with a slight breeze, while I sit out on a nice blanket on the green grass with a good book, or paper to write a letter to someone dear. A little snack and some cold water, a pastime, my camera of course, and a blanket to lay on and I'll be set for a while.


Locally there is someone (or some people) that paints these huge signs all over town that say  

Unfortunately, some people think it's just graffiti and paint over it. I'm certainly not in favor of destroying other peoples property with graffiti, but I did really like to spot the signs throughout town. I passed two of them today... one was still there and one was newly covered over. 

Today was surely a fabulous day! I look forward to my next weekend outing with my Mon! We have lots of fun together! And thank you to Mono's co-workers for treating us to such a tasty lunch! We will have to go there together one afternoon. 

And now, here's to a hopeful good night's sleep and a fresh start to a new week ahead!