1. Yes, lemon verbena smells gross (what’s a verbena?) but the scent of it means that my house is CLEAN – at least until I finish all of these lemon-verbena products and I can get something that doesn’t have a cringe-worthy scent. I spent quite a bit of time the other night cleaning the house and trying to unclutter. The end result is that it looks quite a bit better and it feels less chaotic to my brain. I’m really trying to eliminate chaos where I can. With the kids being home with a sitter all day during the summer months, it gets messier than usual (ESPECIALLY THE KITCHEN!) – it’s hard to keep up with it.
2. My sister invited me to go out to dinner with her last night, and she arranged for our mom to watch my daughters and hers. It was nice – we ate tons of chips and salsa and talked. It really is nice that we can do that now – I was ten when she was born, and we shared a room. I remember when she learned to climb out of her crib and she’d come wake me up. It’s kind of nice that she’s a friend now – back then, I wouldn’t have thought that the age difference would allow it. Guess it’s hard to see it that way when you’re changing diapers!
3. Pumpkin’s favorite song of the summer so far seems to be Train’s “Drive By”. It seems that Train is contractually obligated to produce at least one hook-heavy radio-friendly tune every year. “Drive By” is this year’s “Hey Soul Sister.”
4. I am feeling the need to take advantage of the summer months in a way that I haven’t in a long time. I mean, I’m pretty sure I’ve never taken the girls to spend the day at the beach. Ever. Granted, I think I always figured that Pumpkin was just too young, but she’s nearly seven and I’m being ridiculous. This summer, I’ll take my daughters to the beach. Not sure what else – but surely there’s summery stuff to do that we haven’t been doing in years past. I think we need a summer to-do list.
5. I made dinner the other night (that’s not the part that is blog worthy. I make dinner frequently) and both kids liked it. They liked it enough to have seconds. THAT is the part that’s blog worthy. It was kind of a spicy dish too – so the fact that The Princess liked it so much kind of blew me away. So, I’ll definitely be filing that away in my brain to make again. Cooking is so much more rewarding when you’re not serving a meal to people who are turning their noses up at it.
6. Last week, I went grocery shopping and while I was looking for the basil, I found oodles of fresh mint. I decided that mojitos sounded good. I made a great mint-infused simple syrup and then followed the directions I found online. The verdict? Meh. I’ve had better. But it was pretty.
7. I shot my niece’s three-month portraits on Sunday evening. I’m pretty pleased with how they turned out. Makes it a bazillion times easier because she’s so cute – but yep, pretty cute. Also, how is she three months old already? I remember waiting for my sister to go into labor!
8. I was going to write about how yesterday’s cooler weather was a relief from the hot weather we’d been having but I just went outside and it was miserable. So never mind.
9. It’s been a long time since I’ve written a real blog post here, and I feel like I should write something. I will. Soon. I’m sure you’ll be entertained BECAUSE I AM ENTERTAINING, DAMMIT.
10. I am fascinated by the differences when one common thing is photographed by so many. This happens often with landmarks – Golden Gate Bridge, Flatiron Building in New York, or even more locally to West Michigan, the red lighthouse building thing on the Holland Pier. It’s amazing that varying details – the angle, the perspective, the processing, the distance, the camera settings – can make the same thing look SO DIFFERENT. I was just looking at ferris wheel pictures the other day thinking this – all the same ferris wheel (by the way, if you ever want me to GET ON A FERRIS WHEEL, be prepared to work very hard to convince me. I hate them), but the images were all so different. Sure, some commonalities remain, but it’s amazing just how much you can make something your own when you capture it.