I've been keeping busy with ...
--Lots of puzzles, board games and indoor activities. The smoky air here last week (due to forest fires in both the Florida/Georgia border and in southern Florida) was awful! Local newscasts recommended that people go outside only if necessary and only for short bursts of time. I've been trying to keep Emma entertained as best I can...
--I am hooked on the"Gardens of Time" game on Facebook. It's a game where you both maintain a virtual garden, and go on missions to find hidden objects. I have spent WAY too much on the game. However, I find I enjoy the mental "escape" it provides---a wonderful school-is-out-and-I-don't-have-to-think type of reprieve.
--Emma's Ballet. This weekend Emma has her end of the year dance recital. Em's dance studio rents out a beautiful, enormous theater in downtown Jacksonville... (the theater where DH and I saw "Wicked" back in the day.) Because the studio teaches both dance and theater, the end of the year recital is more of a play/show format. I am excited to see how things turn out! Tonight is the 3rd night of full cast "tech rehearsals," which Em has enjoyed. (And as they require parents to drop their children off and pick up later, I've had 2 hours of HOME ALONE time for 2 different nights...which is an extreme rarity!)
--Swimming...we started our summer visits to the local swimming pool. I was surprised that after swimming independently last summer, Em was extremely clingy and requested a life jacket when we went last week...it's like we're re-training her. She was a little more independent by the end of our 1st visit...but I think it will be a gradual progression before she is truly "swimming" again.
--Books: I loved "Graceling" by Kristin Cashore, a young adult book about a girl who is born with the "grace" of being a strong fighter. She is forced (by her tyrant uncle) to kill others. She ends up on a mission to try to free a king and she finds love along the way. Fun, easy read that kept me interested from cover to cover.
-I read "The Kite Runner" by Khaled Hosseini... while I am glad I read the book, it took a lot for me to get through. The book is about a man who recounts much of his childhood in Afghanistan, moves to the United States, and then re-visits Afghanistan as an adult. Due to heavy content (war in Afghanistan, and personal issues in the main character's family) I had to trudge through in parts of the book... NOT a cover-to-cover in a few sittings kind of read. I also watched the film after reading the book and was disappointed that many points that I considered vital to the 2nd half of the book were completely omitted from the movie. Sighs.
-Our dryer died. My parents bought our washer/dryer set as a present for us when we moved into our house in 2002. The washer (knock-on-wood) is still working fine. The dryer died 3 years ago, so we purchased a new one. Now the "new" dryer is dead....repair man is coming tomorrow. I hope it can be fixed, as I don't want to for out $ for a brand new one (again.)
-My younger sis, Laurel, is coming to visit! She arrives this Thursday evening! YAY! Can't wait! She teaches high school Spanish, so on Friday night, she'll be joining me in eating dinner and going to see the "Bad Teacher" movie (with some of my teacher friends from school) for some summer comic relief. Should be fun!
-Then the craziness of summer-vacation begins...
Saturday 6/25--Emma's dance recital.
Sunday 6/26 - Tuesday 6/28---beach, zoo, find some fun things to do locally
Wednesday 6/29---Laurel leaves to return to Ohio. Em and I are going WITH her to visit extended relatives. (Approx. 13 hour drive)
Friday 7/1---Laurel, Emma, and I are traveling to Wisconsin (8 hour drive) in order to be there for the extended family reunion on July 4th. (I am SO excited about this! We attended yearly when I was a kid....I haven't attended since Emma was 2. SO thrilled to be able to visit with my cousins and extended relatives from my Dad's side of the family!)
Saturday 7/2 - Tuesday 7/5 we'll be visiting with family in Wisconsin having a grand time!
Wednesday 7/6 Laurel, Em, and I will return to Ohio (8 hour drive)
Thursday 7/7 - Sat 7/9 Em and I will be in Ohio sans DH (we stay at my parents' house)
Sat 7/9 DH will arrive from Florida for his 2 weeks of vacation...we'll see my parents, DH's bro and other relatives, many Ohio friends, etc.
Sat 7/23 DH, Em, and I will return to Florida. (13 hour drive)
WHEW! Did you follow all that?
Add to the to-do list that I MUST see the final Harry Potter film at some point (probably while still in Ohio with my sister.)
A crazy whirlwind of summer...but fun, fun, fun (excluding the 32 hours of travel time in the car.) At least the smoke hasn't been too bad the past few days, so we can venture outside now!
What have you been doing to keep busy?