- so there was this wedding: the lodger got married. and maybe more excitingly, he moved out of our basement! Mark and I both had a part in the wedding - he did a reading, and i did a painting. live. in front of people. as part of the ceremony. it was terrifying. but i think it turned out pretty well for being designed and executed in less than 4 days.
- 4th of July in Pennsylvania: Mark and I took advantage of the long holiday weekend to spend some quality time with my grandparents in Pennsylvania. it was beyond nice to just hang out with them, sit and chat on the porch swing, and just be togther. we helped to finish painting the shed (just the inside of the doors), went on a walk with Pap to get icecream, and caught up on all the new family gossip. we were bummed to miss the family reunion last weekend, but we already had plans made. next year. we will be there.
- long weekend in Wyoming: ok, so i don't know if 6 days can really pass for a long weekend since its closer to a full week, but two of those days were travel days and there was a weekend in the middle so i think it totally counts. however you want to classify it, it was too short. i was flying solo on this trip (Mark couldnt swing the vacation days) which was awesome and sad all at the same time. awesome because i got to have all of that time with my parents and brother all to myself, and sad because i didnt get to share those memories with other people i love so much. also, long layovers are not nearly as much fun when you're travelling alone.
- miscellaneous yardwork: Mark spent most of his weekends in July cleaning up brush in the backyard: all told i think he took something like 11 truckloads of branches and brush and leaves and random other detritus to the dump. we also finally cut down the big bush/tree on the other front corner of the house that we never quite got around to last year. yay for chainsaws! the guest room gets so much more light now! there is still plenty of cleanup work to be done, but we have made some serious visible progress over the past few weeks and it feels good.
that giant monstrosity in the background of this picture? gone!
- kitchen overhaul - planning: it looks like this might really happen. we started playing with the idea of adjusting our floorplan back sometime last year i think. we started seriously laying out options in April. to date, we have met with the cabinet guy, and talked with our general contractor, and are getting estimates for all of the different trades that will be involved (and there are a lot!), and thinking about appliances, and there is a very good chance that we could basically have a whole new house by this time next year. this is going to be big.
- technological upgrades: yes, we finally got ourselves some smartphones! we went with iPhones because we already owned an iPad and mostly understand how the platform works. Android just seemed a bit intimidating, especially since Mark is the most adorable technically-challenged-old-man-stuck-in-a-young-man's-body. but i think he's getting the hang of it.
- girls weekend at the beach: i spent the last weekend in July in Southern New Jersey with some good friends, an acquaintance, and a few complete strangers and no one died. we all shared a nice hotel room in Wildwood, and spent time chilling on the beach, walking the boardwalk (so much walking!), and doing plenty of quality people-watching.
- action camp! the event previously known as vacation bible school at our church was last week, and as always it was a blast. i was the group leader for the 4-5 year old age group (yay yellow team!) as we took a Trek to the Top and learned about Mountaintop Moments with God. its always a little bit of a crazy week, but i just love it so much.
so anyone want to place a bet on how long it will be before my next oh-wow-its-been-so-long-since-my-last-update-heres-a-lame-list-of-what-ive-been-up-to post? i'm really going to try to update more often, and with more interesting things to say than just "hey look i did this! still alive!" but i dont want to make too many big promises... lets just see how it goes. ok? ok.