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I think that about sums it up. Riding trikes and picking fresh veggies from the garden... the perfect summer day.

Up North... Part II

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Another great year up north!

Delicious Pasta Salad

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I made a giant batch of this today for us and for some friends of ours who just had a baby. It was a fun one to make because I got to use so many things from our garden. Also all four of us loved it, which is not all that common around here.

Greek Pasta Salad
(I think I changed the recipe enough that I can actually call it my own)

1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh basil
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh oregano
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 teaspoon white sugar
2 1/2 cups cooked pasta
1 or 2 cups fresh sliced mushrooms
1 or 2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
1 cup sliced zucchini
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
sliced kalmata olives
3/4 cup sliced pepperoni sausage, cut into strips

In a large bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic powder, basil, oregano, black pepper, and sugar. Add cooked pasta, mushrooms, tomatoes, zucchini, feta cheese, olives, and pepperoni. Toss until evenly coated. Cover, and chill 2 hours or overnight.


A Dreamy Sort of Day

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Today was a nice nothing kind of day. We didn't do much. Spent some time playing around the house...

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And going for a long walk.

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Everything seemed to move in slow motion.

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I let the kids play one of their favorite things...

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"Cooking" with real food. Which made a nice big mess, but kept them very happy for quite sometime.

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I noticed throughout my day that it was rare in that there were a lot of opportunities for daydreaming... I don't get as much of that these days. But I made sure to soak up every minute of it. And I think I should start planning more of these dreamy moments into my life.


For Two Whole Days

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Apparently they don't miss us a bit since they asked to stay another day. I've made full use of my time writing, relaxing and sewing.

Last night I also made a new discovery... black currents in our yard. Delicious.



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Both children went to my parent's for a sleepover today. Hmmmm, what to do, what to do. I'm sure I'll figure something out...

Home Graffiti

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Daddy's Little Helper

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I am loving, loving, loving our gardens right now. I really can't get enough of them. Everyday something new appears. Since we've been home I think we've managed to have a little something from our garden each night for dinner.

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Tonight we enjoyed our first zucchini of the year. Delicious!

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Tree Identification

I spent a good portion of my day today trying to identify these three trees. After many google serches and repeated tree staring and head scratching, I finally figured it out.

#1 Seviceberry, also know as the Juneberry
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Delicious berries (I managed to find two that were still on the tree) that are ready in June. They kind of taste like a blueberry. This is my most exciting discovery of today- I can't wait to harvest them next year.

#2 Mountain Ash
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Also growing berries that will be ready in a month or so. Although they are not so good raw, they make great jam and wine.

#3 Catalpa Tree
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This tree has huge beautiful leaves that I never really noticed before. It also grows beans (not edible) and there is a worm that is attracted to these beans. It is know as the fisherman's tree because when the worms are in season fisherman have been known to shake the tree and gather the worms to fish with, apparently they love them.



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It's official, we have a two year old. I love two. I've never really understood the whole "terrible twos" thing... I think two is terrific. All day today he kept saying, "I'm ready for my party now." How can you not love that.

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We kept the party simple with family, some homemade pizzas (with fresh herbs from the garden... yum) and salad (with lettuce and carrots from the garden... yippee) and of course his favorite dessert (which he also talked about all day, "my pie is in fridge")...

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It was perfect.

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The 4th of July (Vacation Part I)

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Every year we go up north for a week over the 4th of July with Ryan's family. It is always a lot of fun but this year in particular was so great. Grace and Jackson had a blast being around friends and cousins and enjoying the freedom of vacation. Ryan and I also managed to enjoy some free time as well as some time just the two of us. So here goes...

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There was fishing...

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And this beautiful rain-free rainbow...

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Hammock time...

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And boat rides...

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There was buddy time...

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And golfing...

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There were sparklers...

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And some good 'ol rough-housing...

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There was berry picking...

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And lily pad admiring.

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There was dock sitting...

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And more boat rides...

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There were smores...

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and dipping toes...

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Water sliding...

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A lot of swimming (Grace mastered swimming alone with a life jacket)...

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And early peaceful mornings...

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There was this surprise nap spot set up for me...

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And sunsets...

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And more fishing (even by me)...

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Yes, it really was wonderful.