It has been said by friends, by family, even by me, that our house has a bit of a revolving door. Meaning, once one set of visitors or friends leave, the next are on their way in. The door spins around, some exit, others enter. And I love it.
As Billy and Annie and Reina and Liam headed back to Ohio, I took a day to clean up a bit and restock the pantry & fridge and found myself overcome with calm and eagerness as Jada, Andrew’s cousin, and her husband Jason were on their way. We always enjoy their company, fraught with great conversations, energetic trysts with the kids, and always, always, music and clapping and laughing. They arrived on Tuesday evening and on Wednesday, helped me coral all three boys at the zoo for a somewhat whiney and complain-y and I-want-toys-I-want-snacks-buy-me-something-carry-me-esque morning. But no bother. These two handled it like pros, diffusing tantrums, imparting wisdom, using distraction techniques that I seriously considered writing down, and divvying out discipline when needed. I felt somewhat sheepish, but also refreshed to have so much help.
We visited the hippos, which will forever remind me of Emil since it was while I was staring at them, swimming around and around in their gigantic tank on August 20th, 2011 that I realized I was in labor with him! We also caught a peacock trying desperately to get the attention of a somewhat indifferent peahen, shaking his tale feathers and posturing like only such a show-off can. It was beautiful.
And the rest of the day only got better. After lunch, I put the boys down for naps/quiet time and folded some laundry while waiting for our nanny Elisa to arrive to take the big boys for a few hours.
And, feeling rather tired ourselves, Jada, Jason, Emil, and I headed out for a nice walk and a cup of coffee… which goes quite nicely with goat cheese or chocolate chip cookies:
We took our time chatting and perusing, and I found out that Jason, an avid surfer and musician, is dabbling quite a bit in photography & videography in the Wilmington NC area. Check him out here. Jada, as always, has lovely insights into family life and a level-headedness that I find refreshing. She has always been an inspiration to me, and what luck that she happens to be part of Andrew’s family! Plus, she made some pretty fantastic felt animal masks for the littles, and a felt book about a sleepy pirate. Such a creative family, this one.
The mandolin and banjo… two of my favorite instruments!
The weather has cooled off nicely and it actually felt like a real spring day today, so we enjoyed another outdoor dinner.
Sweet potato white bean burgers with dijon and avocado, corn on the cob, asparagus, and a baby greens salad with pomegranates, goat cheese, and candied walnuts with fig balsamic vinegar
The veggie burgers turned out really well- I will have to post the recipe soon, but I did adapt it from this recipe, found on Pinterest. I made quite a few changes, but the basics are there and I highly recommend trying it!
My big boys… love.
My music baby… also love.
Jada with the boys and the stinky dog
Thank you for enriching all of our lives, you two. We love you!