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Archive for June, 2018

Today marks the end of the second quarter of 2018. We have completed the first half of the year. Amazing! Time really does fly when you are having fun. And, I have been having a great deal of enjoyment these past couple of months, especially the last three weeks of June. I should have included “intense relaxation” on my 18 for 2018 list because I have definitely excelled at it this summer.

Of the 13 remaining items on my 18 for 2018 list, I have completed zero of them this quarter. Shocking, I know! I could have easily knocked out five of them in the last three weeks; however, I have occupied my time with other activities by spending it with friends and family, reading, watching television, and scrapbooking. I played tennis, met one of my favorite authors, saw a play and a movie, played Pokeno, took in a concert, and attended a baby shower. When I look over my calendar, I am full of joy because of all of the wonderful moments that I have experienced this quarter.

In the midst of it all, I am still finding time to blog at least once per month (#5). Counting today’s post, I have blogged 8 times this quarter which brings my total to 20 posts for the year. Unfortunately, I have not been working as diligently on losing 18 pounds (#4). Not quite sure what is standing in my way of making this important commitment concerning my health. I start…stop…start…stop…start…stop. UGH! I am frustrated with myself because completing this item should not be so difficult.

In Other News:

img_1532.jpgThis past Thursday, Andrew and I went shopping for school uniforms for the last time. It was the first of the “lasts” that we will experience in the upcoming school year. Soon, he’ll be taking senior pictures and applying for college. While senior year is an exciting time, it will be bittersweet (for me). Andrew is the baby, so my hubby and I will be empty nesters. Thankfully, Andrew will not be going too far away for college. He has decided to attend Southeastern in Hammond to earn his undergraduate degree in Biology. While he could easily live at home, he wants the “college experience” of living on campus. After talking to parents of college-age children and to college students who live away from home, I can see the benefits for him.

Tomorrow begins a new month. After three weeks of down-time, it is time for me to buckle down. While I still plan to enjoy what is left of my summer vacation, I also plan to be a bit more productive at home. After all, I do have 13 items to complete on my 18 for 2018 list. Enjoy the rest of your weekend, dear reader. Happiness!

“The sweetest things become the most bitter by excess.” ~ Democritus

 

 

 

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Dad and KatHappy Father’s Day to all the dads out there who have earned that phenomenal title “father” in some form or sense of the word. A special shout-out goes to my daddy, Milton Walters, who I think is absolutely AWESOME. Yesterday, he, my hubby, and I spent some time celebrating him. Barry and I drove to River Ridge to pick my daddy up and take him to lunch. He chose Bobby Hebert’s restaurant on Veteran’s Blvd in Metairie. We started off with an appetizer, Fried Eggplant Sticks. My daddy and I both ordered the Bobby and Deke’s Mardi Gras Pasta (shrimp, crawfish tails, bell peppers and onions in a creamy alfredo sauce), and Barry ordered the Cajun Cannon Redfish (sautéed redfish topped with crawfish & mushroom cream sauce; served with vegetable du jour). Everyone enjoyed their lunch choices. Next, we visited Cold Stone Creamery for ice cream: Coffee Lovers Only for my daddy; Strawberry Blonde for me; and Peanut Butter Cup Perfection for Barry. YUM! Afterwards, we headed over to PJ’s for coffee and conversation. As a Father’s Day gift to my daddy, Barry made reservations to take him on a tour in July of the PT-305 in New Orleans. That particular boat also holds special meaning to Barry because of his own dad who is no longer with us. Apparently, he did some work related to that type of boat during World War II.

 

Kat & Barry 2018

@ Superior Grill

The other man in my life that needs some Father’s Day love is Barry. He is the father of my two incredible sons, Andrew and Barry, Jr. and works hard to provide for his family. After we dropped my daddy off at his house yesterday afternoon, Barry and I drove to St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans and checked into the Best Western Plus St. Charles Inn. Surprisingly, we were not celebrating him for Father’s Day. I wanted to see the author Matthew Pearl at Octavia Books last night, so Barry volunteered to take me and suggested we spend the night since we could get a free stay using his travel points. After the event, we went back to the hotel and walked over to Superior Grill which is on the corner next to the hotel. Since we had eaten huge lunches and ice cream earlier with my daddy, we opted for chips and salsa with our margaritas. It was a low-key and relaxed evening. It was a terrific way to end an already amazing day.

 

This morning, Barry and I woke up early, ate breakfast at the hotel, and traveled back home. He is spending today relaxing. Our boys have decided to get Barry an accessory for his grill which he uses all of the time. In fact, he is grilling burgers this evening for dinner. I hope, dear reader, that those of you who have a father or father figure in your life get to spend some time with him this weekend or in the near future. And, for those of you who have had your father called to his heavenly home, I hope you get to spend some time in remembrance of him. He will always be a part of you, and his memory is worth celebrating. Happiness!

“Dads are like chocolate chip cookies; they may have chips or be totally nutty, but they are sweet and make the world a better place, especially for their children.”   ~ Hillary Lytle

 

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Sonic 6-2018

Sonic

For educators, Fridays during the summer months have a remarkably different vibe than Fridays during the rest of the year. In fact, I almost forgot today was Friday. Tooty (aka Comet) woke me up at 6:20 this morning. I lazily rolled out of bed, fed my fur babies, made some tea, got back in bed, and proceeded to finish The Dante Club. Ah, how I love these mornings during the summer! And, nowhere to go until this evening when my family and I have dinner at my mother-in-law’s house. Andrew drove himself to his dermatology appointment. Barry, Jr. stopped by for a visit. Today was a day similar to quite a few days for me this week. My days were not heavily scheduled which allowed me plenty of time during the week to read, watch television, relax, and fiddle faddle in my scrapbook room.

 

Laser Die CutOn Tuesday, I ordered a few more scrapbook supplies. I pulled some pictures from Andrew’s trip to Ireland, set up my Scrap’n Easel, assembled a laser die cut, and semi-laid out the page. Now that my room is set up specifically for scrapbooking, I can leave everything out and leisurely work on my pages. After lunch, I met a friend of mine, that I had not seen in a few years, for coffee. It was a nice couple of hours catching up with Angie. Visiting with her made me realize that I want to carve out more time this summer to connect with my friends that I do not get to see on a regular basis. Friendships bring an enormous richness of joy to one’s life; however, they need to be cultivated in order to flourish.

Early Wednesday morning, Andrew and I headed to North Cypress Fitness Center to play tennis. Andrew played tennis for the first time this spring, and he really enjoyed it. He has been after me the last couple of months to get a tennis racket, so we can play together. With no exaggeration, I have not played tennis in the last 20 years. I had no expectations for myself but hoped I could manage to get the ball over the net. We played a total of eight games, and I won two. Woo-Hoo! However, I must definitely work on my serve. After playing tennis, we stopped at Home Deport to get a few more plants for our front garden. My BFF Shelly had given me some white impatiens last week, so I planted those along with my new plants as soon as I got home.

 

Sonic with Toy

Sonic is always ready to play.

On Thursday, I attended a professional development workshop at HGCS. It was informative and a nice opportunity to see my school friends. In the afternoon, my hubby and I drove to Mandeville with Sonic to see his dermatologist for a follow-up. Last June, Sonic was diagnosed with perianal fistulas and was put on an extensive and expensive treatment plan. At Sonic’s April visit, his doctor dropped his medication down to twice a week. Thankfully, the affected area looks terrific. Sonic will remain on the medication twice a week and continue his current diet with a recheck in six months. This was exactly the news we wanted to hear.

 

While listening to an episode of the podcast, Side Hustle School, a speech pathologist shared with Chris Guillebeau something her mother always told her:  “you should have something to look forward to every day.” Liz Martin’s mom gave her daughter some awesome advice that we can all take to heart. Basically, many of us work all week looking forward to the special experiences we will be engaging in on the weekend. TGIF does not have to be our mantra. Every day this week, I had at least one “something” or more to look forward to every single day that brought me joy. It really is up to us, dear reader, to pay attention to any moment, big or small, that may make our DAY more enjoyable without having to wait for the weekend to experience it. With that being said, and while I’m mentioning the weekend, I do hope you have wonderful plans in the works for your weekend. I’m spending mine in New Orleans with my hubby. Happiness!

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.” ~ Marianne Williamson

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TAC Shirt

Friends + Photos + Scrapbook Supplies + Snacks = A Fun-filled Weekend Preserving Memories. My friends and I spent 31 May – 03 June at The Acadiana Croppers’ (TAC) annual scrapbooking event at the Hilton’s New Orleans Airport in Kenner, Louisiana. It was a wonderful few days to catch up with my scrapbooking buddies while exploring my creativity with no interruptions from the outside world.

 

Crew at TAC

Heather, Donna, Carol, Kat, Shelly, and Courtney

This year TAC was scheduled earlier than in past years. Since it was earlier, I knew my time planning for the event would be limited. Therefore, I decided to spend the long weekend scrapping Andrew’s trip to Ireland, Wales, and London. I only completed three double layouts which is largely due to the fact that I was not very organized. I needed more time to talk to Andrew about the pictures he took on the trip. As you can see from the two layouts on Wales, I still have journaling to complete on both. I need some details from Andrew about the significance of the pictures and a fact or two about the places.

 

Wales

Beaumaris CastleAnother tidbit about me, the scrapbooker, is I am as slow as a snail when it comes to scrapbooking. Depending on the project, it takes me some time to think about the layout. If the project has an overwhelming amount of photos, choosing the best ones can slow me down. I act as if I am preparing a layout for a prestigious magazine, and my career depends on the finished product instead of making a memory keepsake for the members of my family. HA! Even though I did not get as many layouts completed as I had hoped, I still had a terrific time with my friends, and I learned some new techniques using supplies (embossing enamel, antique brilliance wax, rust effect paste, and gel pens) to make my scrapbooks more interesting. I have all summer to finish working on this project for Andrew. I will have more time to make decisions about the layouts, the photos, and what I want to say or rather what Andrew wants to say about his recent adventure in Europe.

Cliffs of MoherIn addition, my scrapbooking weekend has inspired me to get better organized in my scrapbooking room. Yesterday, I cleared everything not related to scrapbooking out of my room with the exception of a file cabinet. Then, I vacuumed, dusted, and mopped. My goal now is to organize all of my supplies. I bought a new sticker binder, while at the event, to house ALL of my stickers. My old binder can barely zip, and I have stickers in various places. I want them all in one central location divided by category. I also need to reorganize my paper by color/pattern and clear out old page kits of completed layouts. This will allow me to create new page kits with all of the necessary supplies, so the next time I want to attend a crop, I can grab and go. Getting organized will take awhile; however, in the end, the time spent will be well worth it. The organization will create time and space for me to actually scrapbook…hopefully, more than once a year.

Kat & Shelly TAC

Well, dear reader, it is time for me to bid you adieu. After all, I must get back to organizing my scrapbooking room since I have gained momentum. Have a glorious week meeting whatever goals you are trying to reach. Happiness!

“Scrapbooking isn’t about scraps of paper and photos. Scrapbooking is about scraps of life – yours and those special to you.” ~Rebecca Sower

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