June 30, 2009

I'd like to thank God....

...for putting it upon Rocky Mountain Yankees heart to bestow upon me the honor and prestige of the Honest Scrap award...I am humbled, gracious, and almost deserving! Also, I'd like to thank the little people....and my mom.....I love you, Mom! THANK YOU!
Seriously though, Rocky Mountain Yankee has a delightful blog. I frequently visit her to see what my 'alter ego' has been up to...you see, she gets to stay at home and spend all day with her little punk AND they play with horses together...some things in life just aren't fair...so I live vicariously thru her...and that's just how it has to be. So imagine my surprise and joy when I found she actually knew who I was! Now I've been validated! All is good in the world....
The Honest Scrap Award comes with a few fun rules that recipients must follow:
  • Recognize your award presenter and link back to their blog in your post.
  • List 10 honest things about yourself.
  • Present this award to 10 admirable bloggers and link to their blogs.
  • Leave a comment on your recipients' blogs to let them know to visit your post to retrieve their award.

Alright, let the random thoughts flow (in no particular order)!

1. I was a fire fighter for the forest service during High School.

2. I was also a teenage beauty queen.

3. I enlisted in the Marine Corps for 5 years (in the Intel field: 2651) and was discharged a Seargent.

4. I love pink and all things girlie.

5. I love the smell of wet dirt and the outdoors.

6. I can't sit still too long, but I long to.

7. Sometimes, I rub my feet together as I fall to sleep.

8. I can fit my whole fist in my mouth.

9. I am always hungry.....ALWAYS.

10. Finally, you can probably conclude from my previous statements that I am conflicted. Very, very, very conflicted.....

As for who the lucky bloggers are that I would like to recognize, I'm afraid my list is short, but sweet! I hope you enjoy their company as much as I do:

Happy Trails,


Westwood: International Edition!

It's true! On June 29th we had our first international visitor....someone from Tel Aviv, Israel, Google'd "two yummy westwood" and came upon my Biscuits and Gravy recipe....I have no way of knowing if they found what they were looking for, but it's interesting none the less....and in the event it IS what they were looking for, I hope it tastes as good for them way over there as it does here in the states!

Happy Trails Tel Aviv!

PS...Thank you StatCounter!

June 29, 2009

Garden Update......THE INSANITY!

Who's idea was it, anyways, to grow a gargantuan garden?!?!?

Every other day, this is what awaits us...That's right, every 2 days! I am taking grocery bags of Cucumbers and Squash to work every day...we have filled our spare freezer with peas and snap beans and are running out of options for storage....the kids have started a driveway farmers market in town.....Gma Kathy and JR's fingers are raw from picking and my shoulders are sore from carrying...when will this insanity STOP!?!?

Call me crazy, but we are seriously considering adding a few more plants next year and having Gma Kathy run a sort of farmers market-like vegetable stand all summer long in the front hay field...we have lots of traffic passing by and the KOA next door...LOTS of potential consumers! I think this 'little' garden may just be the Little Brat's meal ticket to college!

Happy Gardening,

Spotsylvania Spectacular!

Gma Kathy, the Little Brat, and I wandered on down to the 2nd Annual Spotsylvania Stars and Stripes Spectacular on Sunday...There were numerous booths, activities, games and displays as far as the eye could see, and we saw them all! I think the Little Brat must have bounced her way around 72427485737 moon bounces alone....Lordsy Mercy was it a site to see! Our favorite feature of the day was a show called Reptiles Alive, for several reasons:
  • The presenter was a woman more enthusiastic about her job than a pig in mud after a long summer drought.
  • The reptiles and amphibians shown were AMAZING...and scary!
  • ...and this little boy could not take his eyes off the Little Brat! hahahahaha

Here he is again...he would just walk right up and stare at her....not a word spoken.

Just like this....but LB just wasn't feeling it...

...and the only thing that would make him go away is if you yelled at him "AUSTIN!" (we heard his mom yelling that at him earlier when he was annoying other children)...to which he responded with a silly little shuffle-jig backwards, then he'd run away....he was the silliest thing!

On our way out we enjoyed some colonial games similar to what we saw in Williamsburg last week (but this time I have pics!)....I was hanging out, chattin' it up with my homegirls...I was experiencing some pretty severe wardrobe envy tho...those dresses were way too cool....
While mommy mingled with the women folk, the Little Brat worked at keeping this wooden wheel spinning...
...and Gma Kathy wasn't too bad at it either...
But I had them all beat on my stilt-o-matics....look at me go!

..and then it was time to go....and for all of you with children, you know what I am getting at....we call this WHINE-TIME...so as we passed the old jail house on our way back to the car, I threatened my daughter that I would leave her here to wallow in her self pity all alone if she did not stop fussing...like any good mother would, of course....and I meant it!

But she dried it up, so I let her out....this time.....

Happy Trails!

Opportunity lost....

...when your credit card is stolen, you expect it to be used for fraudulent purposes.....however, when your credit card is lost, chances are an honest person will find it and cause you no further grief...the finder (and keeper) of my credit card this weekend missed an opportunity to 'do the right thing'....that is to say, I hope they enjoy their $500+ in stolen merchandise from Walmart and Home Depot....along with the stolen gas that is fueling the car they are driving around.....I hope they revel in the long hours I have spent on the phone with my bank and Maryland Police Department....and I especially hope they had their Sunday best on since they were caught on camera at the location they found my card....If there is any chance they were inquisitive enough to Google the name they found on that card, I 'd like to say just one thing....Sleep Well!

Happy Trails,

Ride for Life...

My Dressage instructor, Nicky Vogel, alerted me to a great event in Upper Marlboro this past Saturday....it was a fund raising event for breast cancer called the Ride For Life, and the venue was the Prince Georges Equestrian Center...The event in particular that we anticipated seeing was the Dancing Horse Challenge...the riders were International and Olympic level competitors...they were so beautiful and talented! The Big Brat, Little Brat, and I made the trip up to see what all the fuss was about, and were greatly impressed....we also learned that we have a LOOOOOOOOOOOONG ways to go yet, that's for sure! They were performing maneuvers you wouldn't believe with a flick of the wrist...It was an impressive show, and I encourage you to attend the likes in your area...it's a win-win for everyone!

Happy Trails,

June 25, 2009

A Williamsburg Quickie!

I had to run down to Williamsburg to pick up my step-son from football camp at William & Mary College on Wednesday....since I had to take the day off of work to accomplish that, the girls decided to make quick vacation of it and enjoy some site seeing! Of course, the battery in my camera died the moment after we arrived, so I missed about 89457389475938754 great shots of the area that I wanted so badly to share with you! Maybe next time, as we will definitely be going back again!

Gma Kathy, the Little Brat and I made arrangements to stay at A Williamsburg White House Bed & Breakfast...what luck we had, as it ended up being walking distance from everywhere we wanted to be!

We arrived around 7pm on Tuesday evening and checked in to our room...we stayed here in the John Adams Bed Chambers....the King size bed was plenty big enough for all of us to share!

After enjoying a glass of wine in the library and enjoying all of the white house themed memorabilia, we walked a few blocks down the road to Downtown Williamsburg....the shops were still quite bustling, even at that hour! We were famished, and on the lookout for a nice dinner spot...we settled on the Season's restaurant...OMG.....the food was to die for! The weather was PERFECT as we marched our well-fed selves back to our bed chambers, where we retired for the night....we were feeling pretty special, and thinking we might just have to make this an annual trip from now on!

We slept in till about 8am on Wednesday, then made our way to the main house where we were fed the most delicious fresh fruit and french toast for breakfast....it made for a great start to the day! Once our crumbs were cleaned up, we strolled back down to Downtown Williamsburg for a little shopping....I got the Little Brat a couple books, and a game to play when we got home.....at about that time I had to head back towards the B&B to pick up Tyler at his football camp...the REAL reason why we were all there in the first place! Turns out he was just a few blocks away as well....yeah! We checked him out lickity-split and headed back to the B&B to pick up the Bug.....did I mention we brought the Beetle-Bug on his road trip? It's a snug squeeze, but since I got the heater ducts disconnected earlier this week, it's a very comfortable ride! So we crammed his hugemongous duffel bag in that sliver of a crack hiding spot behind the back seat and drove on down to the visitor center....I wanted the car close-by after all the walking around we would be doing.....we met up with Gma Kathy and the Little Brat, who had been enjoying some games in Colonial Williamsburg....the Little Brat requested a 'tune', or tin pipe-like flute-thingy she had seen some people playing, so we found an interesting market a little further down the road that carried them....there, we were accosted by a cranky old man.....told not to try on the straw hats because of lice, or test the 'tune' for fear of swine flu....Wow, is all I have to say....the man that checked me out gave me a 10% discount on her 'tune'...I suspect it was for the verbal beating I took from that old man....oh yeah, and he WORKED there.....*eye roll*.....must be a terrible feeling to live with that sorta anxiety all the time....oh well, on with our day! If you are wondering what the difference is between Downtown Williamsburg and Collonial Williamsburg, it's only about 100 ft and THIS...all the 'folk' dress in period attire in Colonial Williamsburg...it's like stepping back in time!

Back in current time, we stopped at The Fat Canary for some super sandwiches....more yummyness! The food is these parts was absolutely DELICIOUS! One last stop before we hit the road, and that was for some treats at the Wythe Candy & Gourmet Shop...as if we had any more room to spare in our distended bellies....but we made it work! Funny how we can always make room for dessert....lol

We piled into the Bug and make tracks for Water Country USA! None of us had been there before, so it was great fun for all! We spent more than a few hours there and visited every attraction on the grounds....we all agreed that Hubba-Hubba Highway was our favorite! It is a sort of lazy river type water feature, less the rafts...you just float around it...and the water is moving FAST...so we donned life vests and let the current takes for a spin....even the Little Brat just bobbed along as happy as could be!

At about 6pm, we decided to end the day with a few ice creams, and then hit the road back home....it's a 2 hour drive in good traffic.

...getting Tyler's hugemongous duffel bag OUT of the teeny tiny nook behind the back seat? A story for another time.....

All slept well....and I am still exhausted!

Happy Trails,

June 21, 2009

Baptized in muddy water...

..and I prayed the Lord save my soul.

Isn't it odd that for some of us, it takes a near death experience to give the Lord the credit he deserves for giving us this day to enjoy? Well, today was one of those days for me...it started well enough....a simple stroll up to the calm, cool water....

...and then it happened...my AHA moment! Well, OK, you can probably see on my face the words that came to mind were NOT "AHA", but I'm trying to be biblical and correct here and all...have you EVER seen a horse in this position before?

...and before I knew it, I saw the light....it was warm, bright, welcoming....some would say it was just the sun, dingbat....but I say they are non-believers!

...ahhhh, and our feet are on solid ground again.....Hallelujah and praise the Lord!

...and as we departed from those muddy waters, both Woodie and I felt it...
No, not the sun...
...reassurance that He is watching over us....

and we'll live to ride another day...


Happy Trails,

Happy Father's Day!

JR got a girlfriend for Father's Day....wife approved! He says he's always wanted a black lab...How could the Little Brat and I deny him that?...

This precious little lady also shares a May birthday with the old man...

..and she gets along great with the other old men too...

It was love at first sight....

One 'Father' down, one to go! I'm going to try and get some time in working on Gpa Craig's room this weekend...I'm officially accepting best wife and daughter of the year nominations...thank you very much!
Happy Trails,

Yet another Fairy expedition....

Randi and I are big Fairy fanatics....this weekend, Maymont Mansion had a really neat Fairy Chase, so we just HAD to go and check it out!
The drive down to Richmond was a bit hectic....there was an accident on the main highway that forced us on to an alternate road for part of the trip....the thing about old cars, 72' Beetles to be exact, is that they don't have air conditioning....it is a small detail that I can normally put out of my mind if traveling at speeds that keeps the wind blowing thru the open windows....Today, however, there was no such breeze....bumper to bumper traffic is HOT....very, very, very, very, very HOT! We made it tho..only after arriving at the wrong gate and also 30 minutes late....Lady luck was on our side, the event leaders were running a bit behind too! See? Always a silver lining!
So we perched our parched booties under the trees and listened to some great Fairy Tale stories...
We learned all about what Fairies like to do, and sure-tell signs that you may have Fairies around you! See here? This is a Fairy climbing device fashioned to help the the whimsical little fellas up into the trees!
We also learned about how to spot Fairy rings...mushrooms or petals or sticks in a circle where Fairies have surely been congregating..they are social little critters, we're told!

We also learned how to make special wishes....there's a protocol, ya know?! Randi was none too happy when she followed said protocol, but despite her best attempts Cheetah's failed to appear, ...Yes, Cheetah's....???

Here she is summoning all her magical Fairy powers for the illusive Cheetahs...

Who knew Fairies liked cupcakes and lemonade too!?!
Our most favorite Fairy fantabulous activity was the scavenger hunt....we looked high and low all over the place for signs of Fairies...picking up treasures along the way that we could use to build our own Fairy Mecca!

Poor nekked Fairies...we were told they must have been flying thru these bushes and lost their clothes! No worries tho, we gathered up the threads and will have them waiting for them if they want to come visit the Fairy mansion we are going to build for them....
We even gathered moss from around this gazebo to make into Fairy house carpet!

It was a great time...we stopped for ice cream on the way out to try and cool off just a touch before the long hot ride home....turns out the traffic Gods were with us on our return tho....lots of breeze to keep us cool! Well, maybe not cool, but definitely not as hot as the ride down either!
Happy Fairy Tales!

June 14, 2009

Krazy fun @ the Kampground!

Did you know we live next door to the Fredericksburg KOA Kampground? No? Well, we do...and it's great! We get to smell campfires every nite and get free access to their pool and playground area! It's a total win! Today the sun decided to shine down on us...Oh the joy! We haven't seen this much sunshine in, well, since last summer! It's about time too! All these storms and rain as of late were really getting me down....In celebration of the SUN and HEAT, Gma Kathy and I took the Little Brat next door for some pool and playground time...I didn't dare take out my camera at the pool, as there were about 324572347537989834759 punks there for a B-Day party splashing around....it was great for LB tho, she made friends with all of them!

After our pool time, we spent some time playing in the playground until our suits dried....Gma Kathy and LB had lots of fun on the swing!

One of my special names for LB is Monkey-Butt....now you can see why!

I like to call this shot "Golly Gee Daddy....if only I had a sibling....." hehe

Hope your weekend was just as enjoyable....with perhaps a touch less sunburn tho....owey!
Happy Trails,

Fancy Training Update!

I have good news to share...Fancy is coming along great! After a so-so visit last month, she's proven she's back in the game now...and she looks better than ever! We found her in her stall after we arrived, so we took some time to dode over her before her workout...one of my favorite things about this mare is her disposition...she is so sweet and kind...it is so common for mares to be on the fussy side, but not this one! After getting some quality spa time in (to include LOTS of booty scratching....her favorite!), we found Julian and then headed up to the track...

Julian has really done a fantastic job so far with Fancy....he's bringing her along at a good pace, and taking into consideration when he should push her and when he should wait....they are such a great team and you can tell the admiration and respect is mutual between these two...here they are working some circles....

Here's a clip of Julian and Fancy...can you see the difference in her lope? Chech out their fast and slow transitions at about 2:40...these are brand new!

Here's aJulian working on some turns...they are getting quicker and more accurate now!

Notice the BIG improvement on her spin to the left this month...she was really struggling with it at our last visit...she still has a ways to go, but I love to see the progress! Also, check out the palomino in the background at 1:05 and 1:20....pretty fancy, eh?

Finally, I got to hop on board! Julian is a great coach, and straightened me out right away....lol...he better be careful, I may become co-dependant!

Fancy is such a fun horse to ride...my turns weren't near as sharp as Julian's, but my circles weren't to shabby...what do ya think?

Last but not least, I had the Little Brat with me this trip and she even got some saddle time on Lil' Ms. Fancy....

It was a great trip, and I am really looking forward to our next visit! We are planning on heading up again on August 1st....stay tuned!

Happy Trails,

June 10, 2009

Oh my.....

Unless you live under a rock, you're more than aware that the Lord hath unleashed the waterworks on us here in Va this year! I mean, come on already! Is the biblical flooding REALLLLLY this necessary? Seriously!
As Gma Kathy left the house last night for a quick run down to Richmond, she turns to see THIS BEAST upon us.....we are pretty much directly under this monster and took quite a beatin' as it passed over....Please Lord, enough already! My boots won't dry and my toes look like raisins...it's not pretty....Please stop the storms, if for no other reason than for my own vanity....Amen!

Happy Trails,


PS...Great pic Gma Kathy!

PSS...Rowboat anyone? Any more of these and we are going to need one to get anywhere.

June 09, 2009

Fairy Hunting....

Fairy season is upon us! Every day at dusk she awaits them....the always illusive Fairy-Flys. She looks high and she looks low....they will not escape her attentive, watchful eye...

...and when she gets one in her sights, they are no match for her quick and nimble Fairy catching technique...

She scoops them up lickity split, deposits them in her Fairy detention center, and holds them for further observation....

But a Fairy hunters work is never done...they'll be out again tomorrow...in full force....and she'll be ready...

Happy Fairy Hunting!