Sounds of Summer

I am sitting at my bedroom window where I recently moved my computer table, with the window open a bit. It is nice to not be in the oppressive heat and humidity of last week. I hear the cicadeas outside, and although over the weeks you get used to the constant “hum”, if I really stop and think about it they are VERY loud. I think the noise intimidates Jack a bit, his trips outside have been far less and he will stay around the patio. (I am ok with this!)

I continue to work far too many closing shifts as we are short staffed with key holders at work. As far as work goes, I really do not mind the closing shift. I, for the most part, prefer the variety of the people on the shifts in the evening. Our day time folk are pretty much the same three people. As far as home life, it makes things a little more complicated. I sleep later, I get less done around the house and I can’t sit and have dinner and some conversation with Mom. This is pretty much the only time we sit and converse. She sleeps a lot these days, and as has been her routine watches her soaps around lunch time. I find little time (or desire to cook) and am eating on the fly again.

Hard to believe that summer will soon be over. It has gone fast. Too much work for both Tara and I, and too little time for play and adventures. Tara is picking up a second job, and will be going for her orientation tomorrow. She enjoys food service, and will be a barista at the Cafe in Barnes and Noble. I often thought it would be interesting to work in a book store. She has a friend that works there as well, so that will be nice for them to have something else in common.

As I do many mornings when I get up, I went to the patio door this morning. As i looked out I saw a butterfly flit by and land on a bush. I have seen many butterflies this summer, but few that stayed but long enough to be photographed. This one even obliged my frantic search for a working memory card. Said to say that my DSLR photography has taken such a back seat to IPhonography, that the only memory card that I actually knew where it was located is in my Nikon camera that is currently in the office at work! This little butterfly was such an obliging subject, that he waited not for one, but for THREE trips back in the house until I found one that actually would work!


In other news, I am a great aunt again. Ella Jean Nash was born on 8/17. This makes 7 (5 great nephews and two great nieces), Tara was hoping for a girl, since there are not very many of them. Besides Tara, I have just one niece (Kristen who attends the University of Texas) and the two great nieces (Avery who is 2 1/2 and Baby Ella.)  Linda (Mom-Mom) Tara and I went for a visit on Thursday, she was less than 24 hours old when we saw her. Linda and Larry took my mom to visit with them on Sunday at home. She now has 5 great children and 7 great grand children. Mom is 92 and now the youngest in 8 days old!Me_Ella nana_EllaThat’s about all on the homefront today. I am thankful that I have a day off today! Tara is off as well. Not sure what adventures, if any, we will find, but it is a gorgeous day out, so hopefully we will find our way outside! More than likely hunting Pokemon!

Pokemon Go has become quite a sensation this summer! We have visited some new parks around the area that we probably would never have taken the time to find. Some I never knew existed, like FDR Park in Philly. It really is a neat place. I haven’t had the opportunity to take photos, as we are always too busy catching Pokemon, and the one time it was after dark!

But first another cup of coffee!


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Sundays in My City – Art of the Brick

Unknown Mami
With Tara working this summer and her active social life with friends, it has been difficult for us to find time for adventures. A couple weeks ago, we both had the same day off and we wanted to do something together. Two things came to mind; The Adventure Aquarium in Camden (I bought an Annual pass in June, and Tara has never been) or The Franklin Institute in Philly, specifically to see The Art of the Brick exhibit. 

We choose The Art of the Brick, the amazing Lego creations of Nathan Sawaya.
We ventured out on a beautiful, not too hot day. Arriving in Philly, my plan was immediately altered when the parking at the FI, and we had to find alternate parking. (I am one of those people who fears parallel parking, and will pay just about anything in a parking lot/garage because of that limitation!) We found parking about 4 blocks away. (I love the graphics available in Snapchat!)

Ben was there to greet us!

Here is my Flickr album with all the photos I took., I will share just a few.

Most were shot with my Galaxy S4, it was just easier than using the DSLR, There were many children and I needed to be quick with the shutter.!

Dum Dum, I want Gum Gum (reference to Night at the Museum)
Of course there had to be a Liberty Bell in Philly!
Creepy but cool!
This display recreated elements from several paintings around the room.

Tara and I both really enjoyed our day. We also took in the Ghengis Khan exhibit, I will save that for another day. 
Stop by and visit Claudya and Sundays in my City.
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Night and Day

HuMp DaY Haiku button sunflower

Distant thunder rolls,
The fireflies flashing brightly
Lovely summer night

I’ve heard people say writing haiku’s is addictive, I think they are write. I tried it last Wednesday, and now I feel like I “think” in haiku, especially when I am outside! I love the early morning and summer nights. In the quietness of the dark, I feel I can hear Mother Nature more clearly. I wrote this weeks on Sunday evening around 9pm!

Wordful Wednesday

After a very hot few days (for May), we started Monday off a bit wet and stormy. I was off on Monday, so I totally enjoyed the rainy morning!,It turned into a nice day to be outside and I spent some time on our patio. Tuesday was even more gorgeous. Low humidity, high 70s, slight breeze, blue skies! I did however spend most of the day inside at work! I would love this weather 300 days a year!

The squirrels and birds have been very happy visiting the patio for peanuts and food! I try and keep them supplied! It’s like a big screen TV for the cats!

We’ve had a pair cardinals, blue jays, house finches, sparrows,Robins, mourning doves and a woodpecker. Most were not very cooperative for photos this week except this little guy! He even stopped and posed (begged) for me so I could take his photo! It’s hard to tell, but I think we have three regular visiting squirrels. One is getting pretty brave and will come within just a few feet of me when I am putting their peanuts out! .

I hope you all have a great week, once again, Wednesday does not mean hump day for me, it’s just day two of six. I am looking forward to NEXT weekend when I will have a nice four day break!

It’s 4:44am, and the cats are acting foolish, they think no matter what time I wake up, (even though it’s still dark outside) that it is BREAKFAST time!



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Summer Bucket List

Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.  ~Sam Keen

School”s out for summer!

This means that I no longer have to get Tara UP in the morning, nor drive her to school! I also don’t have to worry about rushing from work to pick her up after school.


No school means I can sleep “in” and extra 1/2 hour in the morning, and still have 45 minutes of computer time after I have myself ready for work! I will have time to stop at WAWA for a cup of coffee on the way!


For the next 12 weeks I won’t feel bad if I have to work on the weekend, because we will have weekdays off to do things together! At least this summer I work all day shifts, last summer I was still working an evening or two a week! Days are so much better!


I love for summer to be carefree, routine free (as much as possible with working 5 days a week), and relaxed. That’s what summer breaks from school should be for kids. Tara may or may not get a job, we need to drop off an application. If she does, she still gets to sleep in a bit, they don’t open until 11am! I look forward to Tara’s friends sleeping over from time to time. I enjoy having most of them in the house!

Do you have a bucket list for the summer? Check out Life Without Pink’s challenge!

  1. Day trip to shore.
  2. Day trip to NYC. We took a quick trip on June 16, I want to try and get back up there this summer, at least to the Statue of Liberty which I realize I can get to from the NJ side!
  3. Day trip to Washington DC
  4. Read a book! Sounds easy… for me, it is not! I’ve got a pile just waiting!
  5. Go for walks. I want to get Tara and I both outside more! Instead of our evening drives, the time we many times use to talk and catch up, I want to get up early on days off or go out after dinner and get up close and personal with nature!
  6. Take more pictures – this will be easy if we do 1,2,3,5,7 and 8!
  7. Visit Morris Arboretum
  8. Visit Philadelphia Magic Garden again.
  9. Organize my photo files and scan old photos. I keep putting this on my mental to do list… so many be if I actually write it down, I might accomplish it!
  10. RELAX – I’ve scheduled two mini vacations from work – one in June and one in July. At least ONE day out of both of those vacations I want to DO nothing and GO no where.
  11. Purge our closets, drawers and boxes in storage. We have too much stuff and not enough storage space. There are boxes that I have not been in since we moved here in 2009. Time to visit the contents and see what can move on to a new home!
  12. Prepare more interesting meals. (The past couple of months, I have not felt like planning, shopping or preparing food.
  13. Watch all the episodes of Dawson’s Creek on Netflix! I never watched this show, and now that it is on Netflix, it seems like a good fill in when there is nothing else good on TV at night.


What are your plans for summer??? Exciting vacations to exotic destinations?


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Reds of Summer

I’m going to stick with the mosaic theme for the week… here are some red’s for Ruby Tuesday that remind me of SUMMER. School’s almost out for my daughter. One 2 hr. German final today and then just 4 hours on Wednesday. Although I still have to work all summer, I am looking forward to no school routine!

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass on a summer day listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is hardly a waste of time.  ~John Lubbock


Click on the button below to visit other Ruby Tuesday 2 participants!

Ruby Tuesday 2
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Staycation Day #1 – Destination unknown!

Today is the first day of FIVE straight days off from work. I don’t think I have had five days off in a row in over a year. If you work in retail, you probably understand.

The weather is gorgeous, I turned off the A/C! Anything 85° and below is okay with me!

Before working at Walgreens, I worked for AT&T for 30 years, with 30 years came LOTS of vacation. over 30 days worth. I would take time off just to use up the days. After retiring, and re-entering the work force at the BOTTOM, I am grateful for those FIVE vacation days I get each year. I can’t complain though, I’ve got a great manager, and if I need a particular day off we always work it out. I also like those WEEK days off during the school year for some time JUST FOR ME!

This Staycation does not have any definitive plans. I find with a teen in the house, planning is very difficult  She sleeps most of the day away and is awake into the early morning hours. I’m just taking each day as it comes. I do want to get out and have some fun, we haven’t done too much of that this summer, and it is less than 4 weeks until school starts!  Let’s see next Tuesday how many of these I can check off!

  • HAIRCUT (Tara and myself). Heading to Rapunzel’s in Lansdale later today!  (completed 8/11 – we look fabulous!)
  • SCHOOL SHOPPING – we accomplished a bit of this last night when we headed to King of Prussia. Tara loves City Street jeans that are carried by JC Penny. I love that she is not all caught up in the expensive name brands! The best part of shopping in JCP last night? When I checked in on FourSquare, I got an instant $10 off $50 purchase coupon – that was 1/2 the price of one pair of jeans! Every one laughs at me for checking in all over town, but with perks like that, I will keep checking in!  JEANS need to be returned – UGH
  • BLOGGING – I want to get at LEAST 7 days of 30 days about me posts up and scheduled, and I hope to actually find some local things of interest to blog about!
  • CLOTHES shopping for moi. Not looking forward to that. I need some new shirts for work and something to wear to my nephew’s wedding on the 27th.
  • GROCERY SHOPPING – I detest this right now. No one will tell me what they feel like eating, but when they want want something and it’s not in the house they whine (they=Tara) – I’ve made a couple trips to the market. Never really gotten EVERYTHING we need.
  • MENU PLANNING – see #5
  • BEDROOM cleaning/organizing – I might have a chance of this over the weekend. You see, Tara has been sleeping in my bedroom this summer. Why you ask? Because she is Tara, because the desk top computer is in that room. This means I never seem to have a change to really get in there and “dig in” to the clutter! She’s having a friend over Fri-Sun, they will sleep in Tara’s room, so I will get to spend some time in mine! – Probably not happening – Tara’s friend wasn’t able to come.


  • A trip to Philly (either via car or train) – I just want to get downtown with my camera. In particular Reading Terminal Market and Philadelphia Magic Garden.  Made a trip to Philly, by car. Went into center city, not either of the places I mentioned.

  • Monday 8/15 – Ben FM Day at Clementon Parkw/ Joey Fortman, the Sixers’ World B Free, and Dora The Explorer. Admission to Clementon Park and Splash World is just $10 before 11am each Monday in August!  I’ve never been to Clementon Park, although it’s not that far from   home. My mother has fond memories of this park “back in the day”, even recalling losing a ring there when she was a kid!   Really what else can you do for $10/person for an entire day??
  • Do you live in PA or NJ – would you like to spend Monday at Clementon Park too? You can enter for a chance to win 4 tix at Jersey Family Fun. Enter to win between now and Saturday @ 10am.
  • Go see The Help – I have not read the book, but every one who I know that did enjoyed it! Emma Stone is a great young actress, I look forward to seeing her in this role. I will go see it alone if need be.

I’m linking up to the Terrific Thursday Blog Hop for the first time this week! TTBH is , hosted by Rondi from WAHM Resource Site and Crystal from My Life as Mom and Wife .

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Summer is coming to an end…

and hopefully I will have more time to blog, take pictures, and visit my blog friends.  Once Tara is back in school (Tues) and the pool I have been taking care of for the summer is closed (9/13), I will be finding time for all of the above!

Until then, I leave you with a photo taken Friday in Ocean City, NJ.  Tara and I took a road trip (it is just about 2 hrs from home) to effects of the Hurricane Earl on the surf.  We had a great day, and all in all, considering there was a hurricane off the coast, it was a rather nice day – although the ocean was “closed”.

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We will return to normal programming SOON!

I thought for sure I would find some time to blog this weekend, but sadly, I did not…. I hope once Tara is back in school, and the pool is closed that I will be able carve out an hour each day for blogging and visiting. I miss those times sitting with my coffee catching up with friends.

Until then I will leave you with this photo I took of Tara on Friday at Ocean City, NJ. We drove “down the shore” to see what Hurricane Earl was going to deliver. (I knew before we went that it was not going to be really bad weather, but suspected some pretty awesome surf!)  My girl is growing up!

A cup of coffee shared with a friend is happiness!

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Random Thoughts Tuesday – Summer is winding down

It has been a couple weeks since I have defragged, and boy does my brain need it.  I have become very forgetful lately…. the Unmom gives me a place to get it all out!

We have been keeping rather busy the past couple of weeks.  I know everyone is saying the same thing, but where the heck did the summer go?

I went to my first concert in a really long time… I took Tara and her two friends to see Adam Lambert.  It was a pretty amazing concert.  I didn’t really follow AI when Adam was on, so I did not know much about his music.  The girls are in &hearts with him.  The music was very loud, but I was prepared with ear plugs, which made it enjoyable.  I loved taking pictures!

Later that same week, Tara and I spent a day in Philly.  I did not do as much as I had hoped… the weather got warmer than I anticipated, and my ankle was hurting which made walking uncomfortable.  We did a little shopping, ate a little lunch and went on a carriage ride.

Anyone remember the Partridge Family?  Well Danny B. is DJing in Philly again!

We also have seen three movies recently.  Nothing to rave about, but Tara enjoyed them all.  We saw Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Cats & Dogs – Revenge of Kitty Galore and Vampires Suck.

Tara had placement testing for school last week.  I don’t know how well she did, I thought the testing was the day after it really was, only realizing two hours before she had to be there, at 9am.  She was NOT happy with me, and at one point refused to go.  In the end she did go, and after I rewarded her with school clothing shopping!

We headed to the neighboring township Aquatic Center with my niece and the boys last week too.  It was a beautiful day out and the kids had lots of fun.

Work at Walgreens is still okay.  Not my dream job, but it helps pay the bills.  As much as I miss having a real weekend, I loved having my days off during the summer.  I am still cleaning the pool, probably another 4-6 weeks, last year they kept it open until the end of September.  The extra money and discounted rent made all the early mornings worthwhile, but I will be glad to have my morning computer/blogging time back… no, wait, I probably won’t have my morning time back, it will be spent getting Tara off to school.

Tara is not a morning person.  It is one of the aspects of school I am dreading.  Cyber school didn’t matter when she got up.  I am really looking forward to some “me” time once she is back.  I had thought about looking for a “day” job, but think for now I will stick with what I have, so I have some free time!  I’ve got some things I am looking into doing.

I took the tres amigos to the mall yesterday.  I went my way and they went theirs.  I am not quite ready to drop them off and go.  I did a little shopping and had myself an iced coffee in Starbucks. (I am trying to learn PS, so I did a little playing with this one)

I returned something, so I decided to put that money towards some “learnin” books…

and a new purse…. I was never into Vera Bradly much, but I love this print!

We  had some rain yesterday, after a very hot, dry summer, we’ve been having some rainy days.  I love these waterdrops on the leaf!

 Thanks A-Latte for stopping by!  Have a great week!

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