Balloon-fest 2013 - Solberg Airport, NJ

A few weeks ago,  my family and I attended the 2013 Balloon-fest at Solberg Airport, NJ.  This event happens once a year in July and is by far one of my favorite days.  Waking up at 4am is worth every bit of the loss of sleep as soon as I see the first balloon inflate.  The balloons arrive at sunrise and within an hour, 125 hot air balloons all ascend at once and take off together.  This year, we had the perfect day with gorgeous blue skies and a cool summer breeze.  I am already looking forward to next year! 

Welcome to the World Little One!

Today I was lucky to spend the day with my dear friend, Morgan and her brand new son, Joseph Aubrey.  He is such a little cutie who just LOVES to be held!   Each time he heard his mama's voice, he would crack the cutest little smile.   I just couldn't get enough of his teeny little lips and those chubby little cheeks.  One day...he is going to be such a little heart breaker.  Until then, he has brought so much joy to his Mama & Daddy.  What a beautiful family they have become!

First Backyard Tiki Party of the Summer

This weekend, Bob & I visited his best friend's house in York, Pa to throw a summer tiki party.  The day began with a trip to Home Depot to buy the necessary tools to redo his deck. 

We spent the afternoon power-washing the deck & house, cleaning out all of the hedges, & re-staining his patio set.  By the end of the day we were all exhausted but got to enjoy some amazing tiki drinks in his new backyard space!  This Tiki-themed retreat has been a goal of Mike's for a few months now and it was so exciting to see it all come together! 

I spent much of my day Sunday visiting the local town of Adamstown, which is known as the Antiques Capital of the World!  I came home with some really cute Tiki-themed antiques including some cool old Tiki mugs & even a Hawaiian luau girl bowl.  Lots of fun stuff to add to my collection!  Looking forward to heading back to York for some more summer fun soon!

An Intimate Ceremony at Potomac Overlook Park

This week I had the wonderful opportunity to attend our dear friend's intimate wedding at Potomac Overlook Park.  The day began early around 10am on this beautiful summer morning.  Once everyone arrived, we all walked down a quiet path to a clearing in the woods where close family & friends watched them exchange vows under an old cherry tree.  Several guests shared touching words at the conclusion of the ceremony.  We then made our way back to a small picnic pavilion and shared sparkling cider and delicious Tres Leches wedding cake.  We said farewell to the lovely couple as they left on their weekend getaway to Williamsburg, Virginia.

A Day with the Family in York, Pa

Throughout my childhood, I fondly remember our trips to York, PA to see my mother's Aunt Posey & Uncle Rich.  I have so many great memories of the fun times we had with all of our cousins while playing there.  I can remember how much I used to LOVE taking off my shoes and socks and running around in Uncle Rich's perfectly manicured lawn.  His yard had the softest and silkiest grass I had ever seen and it was always so pretty! 

This weekend, I had the opportunity to once again visit Aunt Posey & Uncle Rich's home in York.  And just like I always remember, the yard was absolutely beautiful!  I was almost tempted to slip off my shoes and take a quick walk across the silky (perfectly-trimmed) grass. 

While there, I had such a wonderful time spending the afternoon with a few of my late grandmother's sisters and brother.  It truly was a special occasion to have 3 of her siblings all together at once.  Aunt Annie from California & Uncle Tommy from Michigan had come to see Posey which made for a mini family reunion on this lovely Summer day.  

Over the past few years, I have gotten more and more interested to learn about my family history.  A few months ago, while visiting Aunt Annie in San Diego we got to talking about what her mother and father were like? (My great-grandmother and great-grandfather)  I couldn't believe the stories she could tell!  I even leaned that my great grandmother was an excellent seamstress and would sew many clothes for her 12 children.  But by far the biggest shock was to hear that my sweet little great grandmother's favorite afternoon activity was to watch wrestling matches on TV where she would get so excited and scream at the TV as the men would fight...who would've known? :)

One of the best parts of the day was when Aunt Posey brought out some old photos of my great-grandfather and great-grandmother) .  I had never seen any of these photos nor had I ever seen any pictures of what they looked like.  She even had a photo of my great-great-grandparents and a photo of my great-great grandfather shortly after he arrived from Poland.  (How Cool!!) 

I always knew my mother resembled my grandmother-but I was absolutely shocked to see how much my mother resembled my great-grandmother!  Those were some strong genes and I'm pretty sure I have gotten some of them too :)   

At the end of the day, I just couldn't leave without snapping a few photos of their yard which looked just as pretty as it has my whole childhood.   Enjoy!

Memorial Day Picnic

Last week we celebrated Memorial Day here in Alexandria, Va.  It was such a great day to be with family and remember those who have given so much for our country.  We relaxed here at home and cooked out on the balcony.  Summer is finally here!

The Little Nest

This week, I visited my aunt in Harleysville, Pa.  While there, she showed me this year's birds' nest in her front door wreath.  Last year, there was a nest in the same wreath however the mama bird abandoned the nest for some reason and the eggs never hatched.  After a few weeks of the eggs in this abandoned nest and no mother in sight, she decided to keep the nest.  We used this abandoned nest in some of the photos where she is holding it in her hands.

In the years past, she remembered that this mother bird always lays 5 eggs.  We decided to boost ourselves up to see inside this little nest and discovered something strange.  Four of the eggs were the usual slightly speckled white eggs while one was obviously larger and speckled brown.  We continued taking pictures and joked that another bird had left their egg in this mama's nest. 

That night I posted only one image on facebook and one of the comments said that it looked like our nest had been visited by a brown-headed cowbird because of the unusual egg.  I laughed at the name "brown-headed cowbird" at first but after doing a bit of research, we realized that this egg was an imposter egg in this mama's nest.  It actually is pretty common for the brown-headed cowbird to lay an egg in another bird's nest and then leave and depend on this other mother to care for her baby.  Sadly, we also read that since this different egg is so much larger it will often kill the mother's real babies after they hatch. 

Knowing how dangerous this bad egg can be to her nest, we quickly removed it with a spoon in order to give the mother's eggs a chance to survive.  Enjoy some other pictures of our day!