Friday, August 31, 2012

Am I ready for some football?

Tonight I had my last two fantasy football drafts.

I'm in three leagues again this year as well as a picks league at work.

I'm quite excited about the competition and am feeling cautiously optimistic* and not at all like I'm livin on a prayer* with my picks this year but... the thought of actually watching football has me a bit meh.

I'll probably shake the feeling once the season actually kicks off on Wednesday, and most certainly will be all about it next Sunday when the Redskins take the field for the first time in the regular season.

I'm pretty sure that will happen, but am the same time am bizarrely worried that it won't.

I've been a Redskins fan for about a decade now and an NFL fan in general for say the last 6 years. This is my fifth season of fantasy football.

I can't actually be losing interest, can I?

I guess only time will tell.

* my clever and adorable team names.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

S'Mores Please

I'm still playing catch up from my lull. This story is a month old so please forgive my tardiness.

I've well established the fact that I'm a night owl - during the week bedtime is usually between 12:30 and 1 and on the weekends it often ends up being even later, usually because I'm wrapped up in a book. Which is why it is perfectly ok that I was still in bed when I got a phone call from Bug at 10:15 a few Sundays ago.

She was calling to invite me to lunch. In 45 minutes.

Luckily lunch was in my neighborhood as she was on her way to hang out with her grandparents who live close by. I got my act together and managed to pull up at the house at the same time they arrived.

I told Bug how silly it was, that lunch for her would be breakfast for me. She gave me her well practiced "are you crazy look" as her mom told me she got up at 5:30 that morning.

I was hoping we could swing brunch, but the nearest options were a bit to fru fru for the munchkins, and also quite crowded so we rolled into Cosi for our 11 am lunch. Apparently lunch at 11 is normal because Cosi's breakfast menu ends then. I had (admittedly quite yummy) pizza for breakfast, followed by... S'mores!

Do you know that Cosi has make your own s'mores with a mini fire pit they bring to your table? It is so cool!

It wasn't quite the Sunday I had in mind - but a spontaneous and fun treat I'll take any time!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Today the Redskins released my favorite player - Chris Cooley. He's been with the team for eight years, roughly the same amount of time I've been a Redskins fan and NFL watcher in general.

So many athletes are out there setting horrible examples and doing ridiculous things with their fame and money. Chris Cooley is the exact opposite. Here's his announcement of the release below, where he is so kind and classy, and obviously emotional about this decision.

It amazes me, and yet it doesn't, that throughout this press conference he only has positive things to say - about the staff, coaches and team as a whole. Even though leaving wasn't his decision he still wants to see the team succeed and understands that their vision of success doesn't include him.

My dad asked me if this will make me "quit the Redskins." It won't. But I am surprised at just how sad Cooley's departure makes me and I know this season certainly won't be the same without him.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Talky Talky Toddler

I just realized that at least in part I've spent every weekend of August with kiddos.

I do need to catch up on old posts, mostly because I have fun pictures of making s'mores and fairy birthday parties, but for now I'm going to focus on this weekend.

He's not new to my world, but he is to my blog so I'd like to introduce you to Stompers.

His mommy and I have been friends for about a decade (wowzers!) and he'll be two next month. His nicknames are abundant, but I think my favorite is Silly Billy Stomper Wompers, so I'm going with Stompers.

I don't get to see them all that often since I moved to DC so a weekend at the beach was a nice treat. The three of us hit the road on Friday afternoon and that's when Stompers started talking. With the exception of a few poorly timed naps, he never really stopped.

Occasionally he'd take a break from talking to sing to us. The ABC song, Itsy Bitsy Spider and one he wrote himself, sung to a familiar tune:

(To the tune of Twinkle Twinkle)

No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No, No

Oh yes, no is most certainly Stompers' favorite word. We heard it often, mostly just in usual conversation, but occasionally in the midst of a tantrum, usually ocean induced. It's a rough life when you are both absolutely drawn to and absolutely afraid of the ocean. A rough life indeed.

While "No" may be his favorite word, my favorite was a conversation we had after he spent much of yesterday afternoon doing this:

Side note: I couldn't resist the adorable close up shot either. Somehow my crappy Blackberry camera actually made it look artsy.

Sorry, I got distracted by cuteness... and eyelashes. My goodness those eyelashes...  

Yesterday it rained. A lot. So after a brief jaunt on the beach we hit the road north for some indoor kiddie rides for Stompers and outlet shopping for his mom and I. Unfortunately for my little friend, he fell asleep within about 15 minutes of getting in the car and slept for HOURS. That meant the rides got skipped altogether and his mom and I took turns - one person shopping while the other read in the car. It made for quite an inefficient use of time, but neither of us really minded since we are both quite content to spend an afternoon with a book. 

By the time we finally pulled into the parking lot of Grottos to order some yummy take out for dinner, Stompers had spent the better part of 5 hours in his car seat. Granted, he was sleeping for about 3 1/2 of that, but still, the kid was over it. 

So we're waiting for his mom to come out with our dinner and I'm doing my best to keep him entertained with silly words and songs when he says "Wanna go Stacy's house. Go please. Drive Car." So completely adorable. I told him we couldn't leave til Mommy came out with dinner, to which he responded "Drive Stacy. Get Mommy. Drive!" 

Poor little buddy. And so polite! 

Finally today, our last stop before hitting the road home was Staples. Because nothing rounds out a good weekend at the beach like office supplies (don't ask). While his mommy tracked down what she needed I did my best to get Stompers ready for a long ride in the car. 

It involved running up and down the aisles and climbing on the sports themed desk chairs. Every time a staff member considered reprimanding us they just looked at that face and turned their frown upside down. My efforts paid off - sorta. Stompers slept for the last hour of our car trip, but I don't think it was the activity in Staples that tired him out. I think it was all of the nonstop talking he did for the first 90 minutes of the drive!

I do love that kid, and I had a great weekend, but I'm pretty happy that my cat doesn't ask any questions!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The lull ends...

when I get home tonight and discover my internet has been fixed. Which, I think is true.

I meant to post over the past three days when I've been enjoying lovely, non-spotty connectivity, but, I've been too busy having fun with this lil guy:

He's got a bazillion nicknames and I need to settle on one for the blog. We'll see how the drive home goes in helping me decide. Leading contenders at this point are Pokey and Stompers. 

Be back soon!

Monday, August 20, 2012


I've been going through a posting lull, as I'm sure you've noticed.

I'm not really sure why. I still have lots of posts floating around in my head, but getting them out has turned into a task that I just can't quite complete.

I wish I could quit you, you oh so
addictive silly silly game. 
Sometimes it's my still spotty internet service that gets the blame (I'm ready to write a post but, darn, internet is down again so it will have to wait). Sometimes I start it but the words just aren't coming out the way I want them to so I end up scrapping it. Sometimes I've just been so frustrated and grrr about things I start and then stop because I don't want this to be a rant filled unhappy space, but all I can do at the moment is rant and be unhappy. And more often than not lately I'm spending blog writing time wrapped up in a completely mindless, yet completely addictive game of Zuma.

So there's the lull.

The ending soon (I hope) lull.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Happy Day

I blew off work today for a day of hanging out with my cousin and her little munchkin.

We watched some Sesame Street, played with toys, walked up and down the driveway, took naps, went out to lunch and B&N, got snowballs and then walked up and down the driveway some more.

It was nothing special, but it was still pretty perfect.

Afterall, how could a day with this little face be anything but perfect?

bath time in the kitchen sink

But in addition to it being great to see the little one, it was really nice to hang out with my cousin. As an only child she's the closest thing to a sister I've got and I hate that she lives so very far away. 

They head back out West on Saturday, but I managed to fit in three visits with them during their time on the East Coast, taking the "early and often" approach. 

I've put a lot of miles on my car this summer visiting family, but every single one is well worth it - especially today!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

BlogHer Wannabe

Earlier this summer I thought about going to BlogHer '12. It was in NYC, I have a good friend who lives there that I owe a visit and I was intrigued by the idea of a blogging conference.

But then the idea fluttered on out of my head just as quickly as it fluttered in and I didn't pursue it.

Over the past week, seeing lots 'o tweets and now lots of BlogHer wrap up posts I'm pretty bummed I didn't go.

So I'm saying it now - next year in Chicago.

There are lots of reasons I can talk myself out it... I don't actually know anyone (IRL) that goes, I don't have a clue how I'd answer the "what kind of blog do you write?" question and I don't know that I write enough to really consider myself a blogger. I'm 8 months in and I'm still unsure if I want the world to even know this space exists (and, by the world I actually mean all those people I know IRL. You know, the ones that don't actually go to BlogHer which makes that argument quite counterintuitive).

But... I want to go. I think I'd really enjoy it. And going without knowing IRL people might be good for me. Or maybe in the next 11 months I can convince a friend to go too. And on a completely separate note, I've never been to Chicago and have wanted to go there for probably almost 10 years. So I feel like that's just a sign.

So, next year in Chicago.

Anyone want to join me?

Monday, August 6, 2012

Wonderland Memories

This summer has been pretty stressful so far. Between my dad's health challenges and a lot of changes and big projects going on at work there really has been none of the rest and relaxation that is often attributed to this time of year.

I'm guessing that's the reason I can't stop thinking about my childhood summers these days.

From age five to 13 my summer days were spent at Camp Wonderland.

I mean really, could there be a better name for a summer camp?

My mom worked as a counselor in the "Playhouse," with the four and five year olds so she was always near by as I spent my summers in bunks named after Native American Tribes - I was a Hopi, a Chippewa, a Biloxi and a Navajo.Our bunkhouses were old train cabooses and I can remember many a rainy day spent playing cards and giggling away. The camp featured a wide variety of activities to keep our days busy - swimming, horseback riding, gymnastics, arts and crafts, tennis, a pond for canoeing, a baseball diamond, basketball, volleyball and tennis courts and plenty of free time for kids to just run around and be kids.

Each summer we had Color Wars, complete with a bunk song competition. To this day when I hear California Girls my brain immediately switches the lyrics to Wonderland Girls. My final year as a camper I remember our song was to Paula Abdul's "Straight Up" but the lyrics escape me after all these years.

The more I've been thinking about those days the more memories that keep flooding back. My first time riding a horse, the time I signed  up for tennis as my elective and just how bad my hand/eye coordination was, the camp celebration day towards the end of the summer which included lots of games and faux wedding ceremonies.

As I got older my young cousins joined those summer days with me at Camp Wonderland. I remember my aunt telling someone that it was "nothing special to look at but the kids sure love it."

My last summer at Camp Wonderland was the summer I turned 12. I should have been in the "Junior High Bunk" but, well, they went on lots of camping trips and that was so not up my alley. So instead I was basically a CIT (counselor in training for you non-summer camp aficionados) and I helped out with the four and five year old bunk.

Maybe because it was my last summer at Wonderland, maybe it was because both my little cousins were campers by then and I spent a lot of time with them, but that is certainly the one with my favorite memories.

There's a lot about being 12 that I have no desire to go back and repeat. But, that last summer at Camp Wonderland - I'd do that again in a heartbeat.