Monday, August 1, 2011

Summer Projects

We started the summer with a long list of projects!  First and foremost was building a proper wooden fence in the backyard for Mia and any future dog we may get.  We documented the fun-filled weekend process and you can watch the resulting video here on Jerry's blog.

We also promised Abby a re-do of her bedroom.  She chose a beautiful color called Sunporch and did most of the painting herself.  New bedding and drapes were also involved, as was a major clean up of all the little nooks and crannies of her room!

We celebrated Gina's 16th birthday in July.  That was a big celebration and involved planning a small, yet special, party for her and about 10 friends.  Lots of candy and sparklers!  We have spent a fair amount of time teaching her to drive.  I will not include a photo of that - I am sure you can imagine the white knuckles and terrified faces all on your own.

Abby has been practicing with the high school cross country team since the middle of June.  This has been somewhat time consuming since the scheduled runs are all in parks at least 20 minutes away.  Our efforts to carpool were not so successful, but that just meant that I had to get up and go run also.  It worked out great!  We would pull in the parking lot.  She would get out and join her team.  I would sneak out of the car and run in the opposite direction so as not to embarrass her!  I got in a ton of great running that way and in some of our most beautiful parks and trails.  I am so looking forward to the high school season and seeing how the team does this year.  Friday night football games, Saturday morning cross country meets.  It's gonna be awesome!

I made a rather large project out of planning a very small vacation.  We did a quick trip through PA and NY.  The highlights being a stop in Letchworth Park to view some awesome waterfalls and gorges. We spent the night at the Glen Iris Inn (in two separate rooms!) and enjoyed a great vegan dinner in the restaurant.

From there we went on to Ithaca for more waterfalls and an amazing dinner at the Moosewood Restaurant - well known for their cookbooks and vegetarian fare.  It did not disappoint and was well worth the drive to say we have been there!

Our last and very spontaneous stop was at Farm Sanctuary.  The picture says it all!  It was the perfect ending to our mini-vacation to spend some time with farm animals at an organization which promotes their well-being and rescue from abuse.  The more I learn about the meat industry the more commited I am to this vegetarian lifestyle.  I have to thank my daughters for asking me where our food comes from and what has been done to it before it hits our table.

 And here we are this past weekend volunteering at the Burning River 100-mile Endurance Run.  Jerry has completed this race twice.  He has run it as a pacer.  We have been his crew and have spectated as much as possible.  Now we can add that we have manned an aid station together!  We worked at mile 28 from 7 am until 2:30 pm and really enjoyed giving back to the sport in this way.  Awesome fellow volunteers and the runners are always so inspiring. It still boggles my mind that someone can run that far!