In The Middle

Life, Family, Yoga, Stuff


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Meet Ava

Meet Ava.  She’s my little 5 year old niece and she’s pretty cool.  She loves Webkinz, books, cats, Hello Kitty, painting, coloring, music and the Disney channel.  She’s also an incredible speller. 

I’m a lucky lady today, as I’m here on Pine Island babysitting her while my sister is at work.  She’s built a serious little area she’s named Catville.  She’s made signs.  Signs with words that I’m amazed that she can spell.  Stuff like no entrance, exit here, employees only, and do not disturb.  Crazy.  I tend to forget how old she is since her vocabulary is so large.  That is until she turns on the drama in order to get her way.  And she’s pretty good at that!

So far today, we’ve painted, we’ve used the crayons and colored pencils too.  We’ve played a matching game or two and looked at some books.  We’ve listened to the Dave Matthews Band (her request – sweet) and made some signs for catville.  We also ventured outside for about 15 minutes.  It’s hot as hell and I can take that.  What I couldn’t take were the massive quantities of mosquitoes buzzing around my head.  They’re rather bad down here that’s for sure.  Way worse than at my mom’s, it’s pretty swampy down here.

Speaking of my mom’s, the girls there today are doing some work.  My parents grow lots of off the wall plants to sell.  They also have a hydroponic garden.  My dad built these neat plant tables.  A few to be exact.   They’re made out of wood and they’ve already painted one of them.  They were putting Mady and Lauren to work today on painting one.  I wonder how far they got before they died of heat stroke and had to jump in the pool?

I remember one year I helped my dad tile their front porch.  We did it in bathing suits and we’d take breaks to jump in the pool now and then.  In a few hours, we’ll meet my parents at the Wal-Mart on Jones Loop and I’ll go back to Englewood.  My husband and my son will arrive tomorrow evening.  We’ll spend a few days in Englewood and then head back down here for the 4th of July.  I think the kids are going to decorate their bikes and cruise in the little island parade on Saturday morning.

Speaking of my son Jordan, he just finished his first Decathalon in Tulsa this weekend.  He finished second overall and will go to nationals the end of July in Virginia.  That’s pretty cool, we couldn’t believe it!  We are pretty excited for him, he has such a passion for track and field.  Signing off from the island, but it’s really nice to know I’ll be back real soon.


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Party On Pine Island

After our visit to the salt pool, we came back to the house and planned our dinner.   We had to have a laugh about how she used to make almost $72 an hour and now she makes like $10.50.  We also joked about how much I used to make when I had the video store.  We have less disposable income but we still enjoy the finer things and eachother and that’s all that matters.  We have a place to live and we’re not starving to death.

Instead of crying about how much cash we used to rake in, we decided to laugh and have a few (or more) alcoholic beverages.  She quickly whipped up some great pina coladas.  They were awesome, whipped cream and all.  I’m not really into rum, but I downed three to be exact.  We also made Thai food.  I washed the dishes last night and accidentally submerged the Nespresso Aeroccino.  Big mistake.  I had no clue as I have the poor mans manual pump frother at my house.  After a short flip out I dried it out with a hair dryer and all is good.  We had froth the electric way, enough said. 

That’s Jeanine and I on the left.  Ava took this photos, she’s 5, and she’s a little short so I think we look a tad bit squatty.  We’re drinking our pina coladas in a fancy, retro, thrift store glass.  We are three years apart (I’m older) and we weren’t always as good of friends as we are now.  But I can’t imagine life without her.  She’s funny, she’s smart and she’s totally sarcastic.  She’s also great with fashion (I totally suck at that) and she can shop like a mad woman. 

Today we ventured into Ft. Myers for shopping.  When we passed through Cape Coral, I couldn’t believe my eyes.  Lots of homes were overgrown and empty.  She pretty much said that’s how it’s been.  Several shopping centers are vacant as well.  This area has been hit super hard with the downfall in the economy.  Pretty much because the bulk of the jobs were in real estate and construction.  Sad it was to see the ghost town areas and places that we used to go offering such deep discounts.

We took the kids store called the Cheshire Cat and of course the Ulta store.  After that we had a little snack for lunch.  On the way home we stopped at Family Thrift where we dropped $93 between the two of us.  We totally scored.  I got five pairs of pants and only three fit, but that’s ok.  She got a brand new pair of Keen canvas shoes for $30.  I also scored three brand name tops and Ava picked up a gigantic stack of awesome books and some clothes of course.

We stopped at Old Time Pottery on the way back to the island but frankly, I was too dead to look around.  That place is ginormous but awesome.  Definitely a place to spend a couple of hours in for sure.  Tomorrow I will babysit Ava here on the island while Jeanine works.  We will meet my folks at a halfway point tomorrow evening so I can head back to Englewood.  They had a great time with Lauren and Mady today at the beach for starters.  Then they made soap and then they made bon-bons.  I can’t wait to see all of their creations that’s for sure.

Tonight we’ll finish off the Thai food and the pina coladas.  Then I’m going to make a creme brule.  We’ve listened to James Taylor, Allison Krause, The Killers and Bob Marley.  Life just doesn’t get much better than this.  Did I mention that I bought a one way ticket?  Mabye I’ll just stay.