The leafy shortcut

I’d like to start off by saying that I know this will probably bore the pants off most everyone except my family (and even they might doze off during the video) but I thought I’d share it anyway. We’ve had a few days of warmer weather here. For example, today’s high was 76 degrees. I know it won’t last – in a mere five days the high is going to be a pitiful 39 degrees. Quite the change for this Florida family.

Anyway, back to my story. I decided Jackson and I would walk home after school. Ethan liked that idea so he came along for the ride walk. There’s a great park just behind Jackson’s school and I thought it would be fun to cut through there on our way home. It’s actually a short cut so we’ll probably do it again (but not when it’s under 40 degrees). Here’s how we spent our time:

(Music: The Only Thing by Orba Squara)

We have quite a bit planned for this weekend so I should be back soon with some more pictures of our adventures! Have a great weekend, guys.

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Handprints

Because every kid should do this at least once in their life…

It’s a shame we had to wait for the workers to leave and the concrete was almost too dry. But if you look real close, you can see two faint handprints of my two favorite boys. Even if our family is only here for a little while, the proof will be here forever (or until they need to replace this part of the sidewalk again). 

Instapeek

Here’s a sneak peek at photos from my Instagram feed. It’ll give you an idea of what we’ve been up to these days. 

We went to the local Salvation Army to look for a bike. Here’s what we saw on our way:

Since I couldn’t find a bike at the thrift store (but I did see a dress for $68 and Ken spotted a suit for $600 — what?? How is that “thrifty”??) we headed to Walmart. I found a cute little bike that I LOVE. I think Ken likes her, too. 

And after biking around Walmart, we needed a break. With this place less than 5 miles from my house, I may never move again!

What does Instagram have to say about you?

Thank you Walmart?

There are very few places that I really don’t enjoy shopping. Walmart is one of them. I practically despise the store. It’s always busy, the aisles are always full of merchandise, you can never get your cart in and around the junk, the checkout lines are always long and it’s….not Target. When a huge building sat empty for months and months, the rumor around town (listen to me, I’m talking like I live in a town with a population of twelve) was that a Walmart would soon be erected. I was so disappointed that it wasn’t going to be a Target that I curled up in the fetal position and cried for a week. OK, maybe that’s an exaggeration but I was still disappointed.

Opening day came and went and I didn’t visit the store. Then a few weeks later I needed to take my grandmother grocery shopping. The grocery store was farther away and Walmart was the best choice most convenient. I’ve since visited the store a few times and it’s part of a new brand of Walmart stores: still a super store with groceries and the regular things but smaller and the architecture matches that of the surrounding area. It’s new, clean, and checkout friendly. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.

But the biggest thing it’s given me is a photo-op. The Walmart is 1/2 mile from my house. But it’s a half mile of roads I don’t take on a daily basis. When I went shopping for school supplies the other day, I found a burial ground of sorts. It was a resting place for all things Postal related.

226/365:

Because of this find, I say thank you, Walmart. And as my youngest would say, “I can’t believe I said that without puking.”

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood

Took a little stroll around the neighborhood this evening. After dinner, we took to the sidewalk. Actually, we took to the street because the sidewalk isn’t big enough for us all to walk together. There are things I love and hate about my neighborhood. Tonight, I’ll share what I love.

I’ve lived here since I was in 2nd grade. When I got married, I moved all the way across the street.

It wasn’t always this “prestigious” neighborhood.  My parents thought about moving on more than one occasion. We’re right on the edge of the other side of the tracks. Drugs, prostitution, overall not the kind of environment in which you want to raise a family. When we moved here, it was mostly older households. In time, they started leaving, either dying or going to nursing homes. That meant a new up-and-coming neighborhood was possible. Younger families moved in, started to fix up the homes and formed a neighborhood association. Neighbors protested some of the dilapidated motels which were being used for anything but tourism. Unfortunately, the motels are still here but the squeaky wheel got the oil. That oil came in the form of more police driving in and around the neighborhood and a neighborhood watch program. Since the decline of the economy a few years ago, we’ve seen a downslope once again. But once you know that it’s possible, you can’t help but have hope that the place will return to its heyday.

Anyway, I still like our little corner of the world. This is where you can find light poles that display notices for yard sales, lost or missing pets and any other notification you can dream.

This is where the palm trees grow tall. Not necessarily beautiful, but surely tall.

171/365:

This is where the moss is walked under or walked by.

This is where the sidewalks are disjointed because of the big oak trees.

You know my favorite part of this neighborhood? My neighbors. My parents live right across the street and we love it. Every time I walk outside, I see my childhood home. There’s something comforting in that. What do you love about your neighborhood?