Sunday, July 31, 2011


We touched down in Puerto Rico this week.  
Here to visit with cousins and help my sister unpack and get settled....and that we have!

 Cousins have laughed and played

 We beached


 We walked the neighborhood


 We decorated, swam, rested and unpacked some more

And most importantly...cousins visited :)

Monday, July 25, 2011

Sweet Spot

 The beach in the summer between 6pm-8pm......sweet!

 Chasing after your Momma and soaking her with water to watch her jump up to protect her camera....sweet!

Making a big mess one minute and watching the water wash it away the next...sweet!

Thanks to Uncle Trey.....that sweet spot on the back of your know the spot just before your butt...yeah..that's "Sweet Baby Meat".  Not only is that the most ticklish spot in the history of is the best spot for chomping down on while running after your Momma at the beach.

Capturing it on camera ....sweet!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Magical Days

It's been a busy summer.  In between company, work, home projects and an upcoming vacation, my days seem to roll one right in to the other. My "big boy" is growing so fast before my eyes, since May he not only has moved off the steps of safety in the pool, but now jumps and dives head first into the real deep end...swimming deep below the surface and swimming the length of the pool over and over again. 

His strength and stamina are amazing to me and last night during that beautiful magical time of day photographers call the "golden hour", as I watched the summer sun sink into the sky and my son jump again and again in the warm pool, I convinced myself I will see him at the Olympics one day.  We had just come home from a nice day with his daddy at Hollywood Studios seeing Woody and Buzz and the whole gang, yet complete exhaustion hadn't set in yet. We still had off to fall, head over heels over and over again, into the pool.  Of course we weren't happy until we hit that wall of exhaustion and fell into bed in a near state of sedation!  

And with that I kept thinking, THIS is summer.  THIS is what it's supposed to be.  Days that blend one into the other, days spent in play time, days full of make believe friends and characters that come life.  

Cooper told me this morning that Kermit the Frog's voice is really Ernie's voice and Fozzie Bear's voice is really Burt. "I can tell" he said.  Ok...Is this kid really just shy of 4 years old?!?! 

Well...enough pondering the wonders of these days with an almost 4 year old...someone has just stopped singing "Noah Noah" long enough to hand me a "color" to "color my treasure map because the treasure is under the X". 

So..I am off go bask in the glory of the magic...I don't think I need a map...I think I already found my treasure.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Baby showers, company and photoshoots...oh My!

As I sit here typing, listening to the chatter of Cooper playing by himself in his room, and that background noise of the Toy Story Race Track set reminding me "You've got a play-date with destiny", every fiber of my being is screaming..."I am TIRED!"  Just shy of two weeks straight of company, I am ready to retreat again in my creative cocoon. 

In the past 2 weeks I have watched the end of the space shuttle era, celebrated with friends at my 20th reunion and stayed up all night chatting with an old friend who still yells "DOOODIE!" into the phone (do we ever outgrow 12 year old humor really?")
 when she calls.

But I also did some photoshoots, visited with Britany and her former USAFA Gymnastic teammate, hosted 2 lads from Ireland who came and visited with Jim and Dennis for 5 days and THEN ....just when you think it's time to's baby shower time!

But I LOVE the promise that new babies bring!  I LOVE to know new lives will continue to come into this world for us to love, to spoil with too many pink tu-tus and to join our crazy cast of characters.

(this photo is for my sister...can you believe this is Donnie?  In  my mind he will always be 10 ! ha!)

So I get just enough time to sleep, do laundry, re-group and get ready to visit my sister in the LAND OF PINA COLADAS!  

It's 7:30pm and I will in all likelihood be asleep by 9:00pm...if I make it that long. If you need me...expect your text or call returned by the end of the week...I think I will be hibernating for the next few days :) 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Full- The 20th High School Reunion Weekend

 Another FULL weekend of refilling my soul. 
This weekend at my 20th high school reunion, I packed it FULL honey!

We gathered at the beach. 

 At the pool
 Around the dining room table

In the kitchen reviewing the yearbook.

Words that come to mind: Fun, tiring, hopeful, bittersweet, nostalgic, validating.....making my heart feel full :)

Friday, July 8, 2011

The Final Launch

In 1981, I watched the first shuttle launch in a state of wonder.  In 1986, I watched the Challenger explode in a state of fear. In 1988, I watched us get back into the space race in a state of prayer. And today, in 2011, I watched the final launch of NASA's space shuttle program. In a state of wonder, in a state of awe and in a state of pride that I live not only in a country where we can dream as big as we want to, but to live and be raised in a town that watched dreams launch.

I was raised on the Space Coast. New Jersey transplants since 1978, my family left the northern snow to follow a dream, a dream of living on the warm sandy beaches of Florida. One of my dad's favorite stories to tell, used to be of the transfer from New York Bell to Southern Bell,  from Bergin to Brevard County. As a child, I used to ask over and over again to hear the story of my parents crossing the Hubert Humphrey bridge in  April of 1978 for the first time. My dad, an amazing story teller, would describe in wonder that the moment our little barrier island came onto the horizon.......he and my mother gasped in awe of the beauty.  Amazed that this paradise wasn't really even on a map, and they knew that their dream was coming true.

I was raised in the literal shadow of the shuttle. I watched a majority of the 135 missions. From my front yard, from my school yard, from the side of the road, from our secret sand bar. Since 1981, the background noise of my childhood consisted of shuttle blast off rumbles, sliding glass doors shaking from the sonic booms and count down clocks. As kids, we talked easily of shuttle scrubs, launch windows, rocket boosters, O-rings and how families were affected by contract wins and losses. I was taught as I grew in that shadow of NASA that all things are possible, that all dreams can come true, and to never stop dreaming the impossible dream.

Today, with only a 30% chance for lift off, I wasn't prepared to see the last launch. But as I passed all the tourists, all my neighbors car's filled with faded NASA stickers,  the nostalgia was palpable and I knew we were about to witness something historic.  But to be honest, I think I felt that way every time.  I never was NOT in awe of that launch pad in the distance, of that fireball rumbling through my Florida sky.  

And today, the Banana River was calm and warm, and that cloudy sky with a high percentage chance of rain, didn't matter as my friends and neighbors all migrated to this same spot, greeting each other with hugs and anticipation.

But as I watched my son and his friends impatiently waiting for the countdown, and creating their own version of the countdown clock over and over again, I wanted him to witness the history, to feel that fear, wonder, awe, pride and exhilaration of the unknown. To know that to have a dream in one thing, but to watch it launch off into quiet another.

To know that when that first trail of smoke and the first sight of the fired up rocket boosters comes into view on the horizon, time and space literally stand still. One man's dream is only as big as his imagination, and to watch it come to full circle is to experience all those emotion from fear to exhilaration crammed into that last 10 seconds of a countdown clock.

 What a wonderful world. Where we can dream a dream so big and daring as to leave our planet....and not only to do so...but do so for decades.

The Space Coast will always be the Space Coast.

 Crowds will always gather to cheer on, watch in awe and be a part of dreams come true.

 My child will always have the memory of being there at the last historic launch.

I will always be in awe, I will always be proud, I will will always cheer on the next generations of dreamers.