A weekend at our own pace

I wrote this yesterday and then got excited about watching GoT.  Forgot to post it – whoops!  And if you haven’t seen Episode 4 yet…GET OUT FROM UNDER YOUR ROCK AND MAKE IT HAPPEN! 

I woke up today with some serious tummy grumbles (to put it politely).  I ended up staying at home and needed something to do that makes me feel mildly productive.  And here I am.

Weekend Recap

My energy level was pretty low last week (I’ll post my Whole30 week one update later this week) so we kept things fairly low key on Friday.  We cooked dinner at home before taking the girls to Windsor Castle Park for an evening walk.  With the Smithfield BBQ Classic on Saturday, many of the competitors were preparing their tents and grills/smokers at the park Friday evening.  We swung by to see the two gentleman that cooked for our party last weekend, Joshua Shook (fun fact:  he is also a meat doctor like Bradley!) and Jonathan Jackson.  Their team, Buttman and Rubbin’, competed in the competition and were busy at work when we stopped by.  After occupying (probably too much of) their time, we took the girls to the water for a walk before settling down at home.  We stumbled upon “Bad Moms” while searching the Roku and laughed until it was time for bed.  (Seriously, that movie is pretty good.  I’m not a mom and even I could get behind it.)


Despite the most sullen picture this animal has ever taken, Reese was thrilled to be getting attention at the Farmer’s Market.  And don’t even get me started on how adorable the girls look in their beautiful collars!!

Saturday was pretty perfect.  The dogs let us sleep until 8:30 and then we took our time getting ready before heading to the Farmer’s Market in downtown Smithfield.  I was able to get a few items marked off of the grocery list and received plenty of attention for the girls.  After we strolled through the market, we walked down the street to Victoria’s Rose so that I could put together a baby gift for some of our friends that are expecting their first child before the new year.  They recently found out that they are having a little girl!!  I was able to find some adorable baby accessories for their new bundle and got to support a local business.  


Bradley and the girls waiting on the front porch of Victoria’s Rose while I do some shopping.

Did you know that Bunnies By The Bay – a company that produces products for babies and small children – donates a certain amount of their earnings to the Worldwide Orphans company to support orphaned children with early interventions?  The goal of the organization is to offer early support in the hopes of helping these children have successful lives when otherwise they start life a leg behind the rest. Most of the gifts I got were from this company.  I love it when I can lighten the lives of more than one person with a single purchase!


The goodies that I got from Bunnies By The Bay – (from left to right):  Kiddo Lamb Buddy Blanket, Chirp Rattle, and an Elsie doll that also comes with a small booklet with a story about being beautiful on the inside by showing kindness and love.  Please note that Bunnies By The Bay did not ask me to review these items for them – they don’t know I exist.  And I’ve never actually seen a child use them so…  

Bradley snagged a hot dog at the ice cream shop before we went home.  I tidied up the house a bit and rearranged the flowers from last week’s party before we set out to see the bbq festival in full force.  The competitors had already submitted their meat for judging and were relaxing with family and friends as we all enjoyed the labors of their hard work.  (I wasn’t able to indulge because of Whole30 but it smelled amazing and everyone in the tent could barely see straight because it tasted so awesome.  There were a few blackberries and other fruits on site so I wasn’t completely forlorn.)  We walked around to see the rest of the festival before swinging home for a few hours and gathering the girls.  We went back to the competition around 5 to see the judging and spend a little more time in the sunshine.  Buttman and Rubbin’ won fifth overall in the competition!!!  Not bad for a crew that has only been in one other competition.  Bradley and I enjoyed supporting them and hope to get the chance to witness many more award ceremonies!


Buttman and Rubbin’ enjoying their time in the lime light!!  Thank you to Heidi Shook, wife of Josh, who took these pictures and let me “borrow” them from Facebook!

After the competition we went back home to grill some steaks and asparagus before sitting outside and watching the sun set while the girls enjoyed leftover steak.  The weather was perfect.  There was a light breeze, the temperature hadn’t gotten that high for the day, and the humidity was tolerable.  It was nice to be able to just sit.  It was a type of quiet that we have not had in a few weeks.  We called it quits fairly early on Saturday night, because we were wore slap out.


Honey enjoying the steak leftovers.  Reese had her fair share but gobbled it down and was already wandering around the yard in a mild steak coma by the time I took a picture.  That girl waits for no camera.

Sunday morning we went to the 8:30 service at church, made our weekly grocery store run, and went home so that I could meal prep for the week.  After almost two and half hours, I cleaned the kitchen, set the food in the refrigerator, and got ready to head to Norfolk to see the Durham Bulls play the Norfolk Tide.  Despite blazing hot seats when we first arrived, the weather cooled off and our neighboring Tide fans were playfully competitive without being jerks.  To make it even better, the Bulls won for the last game we will see this year.  I learned a lesson about my RXBAR (a Whole30 compliant snack bar) and their ability to withstand high temperatures.  Despite that mild disappointment, I didn’t feel upset or angry that Bradley got to enjoy a Frito dog (hotdog covered in cheese, chili, and crushed frito chips), a pretzel, and two beers.  Nope.  I’m not bitter one bit.  Not one stinking bit…


Gosh, I love this hunk.  I think I’ve almost convinced him that we should get matching Bulls shirts for next season.  It’s a work in progress but I’m hopeful!

We barely had the energy to whip up a quick dinner before heading to bed.  I remember when my weekend nights didn’t really get going until 9 or 10 o’clock at night.  I don’t miss those days.  I would trade all of them in for an early bedtime and a fulfilling day.  

This weekend was the perfect blend of activity and peacefulness.  We had things to do but nothing felt forced and everything we did could have just as easily not been done.  There was no sense of urgency.  Our lives have been one adventure to the next since we got married.  And while I love the chaos of traveling to see friends and the craziness of preparing a home for well wanted company, there is something necessary about operating at your own pace from time to time.


A week later and they still look great!  Cheers to Carrie and Bubba/Kate for making such beautiful arrangements that still bring me joy.  Flowers can make any house feel like a home.

It also makes me grateful for a husband that can entertain himself when I need some alone time but is also available to me when I need some extra attention.  As a social worker, I take care of other people and their needs almost everyday of my life.  I try not to social work my friends and family, but I almost always do.  So, from time to time, I need to be alone.  I need freedom from the pull to help.  Bradley has always allowed me that without guilt, in large part because he benefits from temporary isolation as well.  In between our social bursts throughout the weekend, he kept busy in his shop and I worked on flower arrangements while listening to Jamiroquai on Pandora.  The perfect balance was obtained and that can feel like an accomplishment in itself.


Me and my favorite threenager in our matching Durham Bulls hats!  He didn’t go with us to this game but I was able to snag this picture at the bbq festival.  He was not in the mood for modeling so I tickled him and this was the best we could do.  I’ll take grumpy tickles any day of the week!

Next weekend has the potential to be about like this weekend.  We are tentatively scheduled to try out an Escape Room on Saturday but have not made a single other plan.  I’m pumped!

I mentioned our Farmer’s Market earlier in this post.  One of Bradley’s family members, Heather, is starting her own blog and has a wonderful post about her local farmer’s market.  Check it out!  She also has an insanely cute family so you should go to the page if for nothing else than to see pictures of adorable blonde-haired doll babies!  The blog is called Flashes of Bliss at http://www.flashesofbliss.com!!


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