Friday, August 7, 2015

Rain Forest Cafe

 I've never heard of the Rainforest Cafe.  
It sounded like a cool place to go to eat with the kids.  
We went to a location in Atlantic City, NJ,
The Rainforest Cafe restaurant is designed to depict some features of a tropical rainforest, including plant growth; mist; waterfalls; and figures of rainforest animals, including elephantsfrogsgorillasjaguarstigers, and tropical birds. Cool part of the theme is that some of the figures are animatronic.

 We celebrated Max's 11th birthday with a volcano cake!
  Most of the family was here.  
Two of my boys (Ahren and Zachary) couldn't come on vacation this year.
I love this photo of Brandon with his grandparents!


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Graduation Party {Brandon}

 My friend has her own cake business. 
She made a graduation cake and cupcake tower and O.M.G. they were delicious!!
 I made a board covered with photos of Brandon over the years.
  I was happy that Mommom R was able to join the party. 
(My grandmother and Brandon's great grandmother)
I attached photos of Brandon from infancy until his senior year of high school.   
They hung in our living room for our guests to see.  
Towards the end of the party, some of the balloons sank to the floor. 
This picture reminds me of the Disney movie "Up".

The jousting bounce was well worth every penny to rent!
 As you can tell, the boys had a lot of fun smacking each other around!
  It was a hot day but it didn't rain like it was predicted.  
We had 75 guests who all said the food was awesome! (I was smart and had it catered).  
A huge thank you to all our family and friends who were able to join us to celebrate Brandon's graduation!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Conversations with Zachary {Michael Jackson and 50 Shades of Grey}

I know you are not with the time music wise, as in you listen to pop like Maroon 5.


But I got a few questions. First did you hear the new Weeknd song? "Can't Feel My Face"?  Sounds like MJ. But towards this generation. 
I mean his sound is so unique even comparing him to MJ is a compliment, because he's not trying to be MJ, but he has the voice that is just crazy.
I'm saying if you haven't,  please listen to it now. 
"The Weeknd - can't feel my face" you don't have to enjoy the lyrics but his voice is blessed. 


I found it on you-tube. Not bad!

I want to know what you think of that song. Cause I know you might feel the vibe and I got another song for that is from a pop singer but it had the vine beat and flow wise that I love. And if I can really bump this song I'm sure there is a chance you might like it but different to you. But The Weeknd song you'll like more .

You're right. Reminds me of Michael Jackson.  But I like this guys voice better.

I'm not comparing them cause if you listen to the songs he has. It is completely different.  His songs are about drugs and women and all that, Explicit, but you can hear the MJ influence.

It's not my style of music, but it was good. 

HEY!  They sing a song in 50 Shades of Grey!

You just realized this??  I didn't even watch the movie and I knew.

I recall just being told I am not with it music wise.... and he is surprised??!!  I am impressed with myself that I recognized the singer!!

Now listen to Selena Gomez ft A$AP "Good For You".  I'm curious what you think of that. Cause it has a pop feel but more rap with a slow vibe but singing. Her pop fans love it and the vibe is what I look for in rap music. So I can't help but like it.

Found that one on You-tube also.  Liked it!

I like that one.

Did you hear it before or you just listen?

Just listened to it.  I don't listen to the radio, so I don't know any of these songs.

I don't listen to girl artists. But this has me comming back. And trust me I don't listen to the radio. But I keep up to what The Weeknd does cause I'm a fan.

I guess paying for him to go to an University that focuses on music and audio production was a wise choice!


Monday, June 22, 2015

Conversations with Zachary {Our Cat}

Before I begin the conversation, you need to know some things about our cat, Libby. Since we rescued Libby (in 2007) she has always stayed upstairs.  She never came downstairs unless it was thundering, and then she would hide under the couch.  Recently she has been coming downstairs and laying on the couch.  I'm not sure what sparked her interest, especially since we got a puppy last year.  Maggie (our dog) tries to chase Libby, but Libby will stand her ground and hiss.  Perhaps this bravery has given her confidence to join us downstairs.

      Look Zachary, Libby is on the couch with me!

Glad to see her downstairs

It's thundering here. I can't believe she is not hiding. 

She needs love.

I've been scratching her belly. 

Have you been brushing her?


She gets the less love of the household so I'm glad to hear that.

That's only because she is always hiding. =D

Cause she don't wanna see everyone else getting love! 

Zach! That's silly!

Put yourself in her paws


Saturday, June 20, 2015

Dear Brandon

Love is not easy to put into words, especially a mother’s love, the depth of which is unfathomable.

When I look at you now, tall and strong, I don’t just see an eighteen-year-old man, I see you in all of your life’s stages at once.  I see you as a newborn in my arms in the shadows of midnight, a blur of curly blonde hair racing to keep up with your brothers, the pink shirts you wore throughout elementary school, the tender realization in your eight-year-old green eyes that stealing the hockey puck was okay. (Who knew that sharing with others didn’t apply in sports?)

I remember the day you came home from Kindergarten and told me the teacher forgot to talk about Jesus, the way your face lit up when you opened your first pair of hockey skates on Christmas morning, green blankie, Funny Monkey, calling you “Moose”, your first hockey game (and first hockey fight), the 8th grade formal dance, singing “It’s Raining Men” during the cruise karaoke night, your first heartbreak, first job at Center Ice, learning to drive the car (and first ticket), prom, a proud captain of your travel and school hockey teams, winning the EPSHL championship, and now, a man.

As much as a mother raises her son, so does a son raise his mother.  You have taught me many things as I have watched you grow.  From you I have learned the power of a tender heart as I have witnessed your quiet kindness to others all of your life.  Your teachers throughout grade school up to high school always remarked how much they loved having you in class (Though there was that rough patch with Miss Shriner). You attract friends wherever you go, and I admire how loyal you are to them. 

You have a natural tenacity and ability to accept life as it unfolds.  This is a skill that will serve you well in the years to come, because life is about transformation, a decades long process of becoming. There are chapters, but no destinations. In the years to come, as you are surprised or sidelined unexpectedly or sent in directions unanticipated, remember that it is unfolding as it should be. 

You taught me how to find joy in the moment. You have the gift of turning the mundane into amusement.  You see comic irony in the world around you. Your wry humor is a constant source of delight that lightens our days.  It reminds us to relax and not take everything so seriously. I will miss this tremendously when you go to college.  

Brandon, I love you. You are the son that every mother dreams of having. I could not be more thankful for you and proud of the man you have become.  Your character and integrity are important to you.  You are finding your voice and moving forward in positions of leadership.  

Choose wisely and you will live without regret, because real and lasting happiness has nothing to do with material possessions, it is a result of living your values, even when it is difficult. Even when choosing to stand for what is right means that you will lose friends or perhaps a job/position.

Senior year is a year of letting go, when motherhood becomes a complicated mixture of pushing you forward and holding you back. Every day I cry a few tears (okay, a lot of tears) as I get used to the idea of your moving on from our home, but at the same time, I am so excited for you to embrace this next phase of life.  Have fun, work hard, and enjoy every single day.

I am in your corner, your loudest cheerleader, and proudest Elizabethtown College Mother EVER!  ~ Love, Mom


Friday, May 1, 2015

Conversations with Zachary {Wasp Nest}

Zachary: Mom we have a situation.

(of course my brain automatically thinks he crashed his car or something bad happened).

Me: What's wrong?

Zachary: There was a wasp nest outside my balcony and I knocked it down.


Me:  You better be careful they don't come after you.

Zachary: They are still flying around, what do I do?

Me:  Are they in the house?

Zachary: No outside the window.  I didn't have wasp spray so I used Lysol and it got all over the furniture.

(apparently Zachary was inside the house spraying through an open window trying to get to the wasps).

Me: Get a damp washcloth.

Zachary: To pick up the wasps?

Me: No, wipe off the furniture.

Zachary: oh.

Me:  Did the Lysol work?

Zachary: Got them, but the war just started.

Me: Call the apartment complex office and tell them to send out the pest control company.

Zachary:  What do I do if they are dead?

Me: Pick the wasp up with a paper towel and throw it away.

Zachary: I forgot to get paper towels at the store.

Me:  When you go to the store go get paper towels, pick up some wasp spray.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Conversations with Zach {Basketball}

When Zachary was 10 years old he began playing basketball.  The first team Zachary joined was at the local YMCA.  Basketball was the perfect sport for Zachary because his wardrobe consisted of basketball shorts or sweat pants.
10 years later...
 Zachary is asking me why did he wear sweat pants during the basketball games.

Why did I always wear sweatpants when I played basketball for the games at the Y?

You refused to wear jeans. You always wore sweatpants.

Why would I wear jeans during a basketball games. That's more Redickulus than sweatpants. 

                                           {Re-dick-u-lus} ????

That's not what I meant. Just that you preferred to wear sweatpants.

Yeah but I saw pictures of when I played at the Y.  I mean why would I wear basketball shorts all the time except when I'm actually playing. 

He has a good point.