My son’s summer vacation will be ending in a couple of weeks, and we’ve managed to pack in quite a bit of adventure. I’ve been thrilled with every special moment. However, we’ve also done a lot of my favorite pastime… satisfying my agoraphobic tendencies by relaxing at home. To make matters worse, my poor garden never really got planted this year. But, that’s okay. We’ve been focusing on getting happy with some success.
The kid’s cooking class was rewarding in more ways than one. We gained a delicious new recipe for chocolate chip cookies worthy of heirloom status.
We managed to conquer some of our fears.
Periodically, we treated ourselves. On this day, we craved a burger and fries. This wasn’t our best restaurant experience of the summer by a long shot, but it wasn’t terrible. Frankly we’ve been spoiled with some really great places that don’t belong to a chain like Highway 55 Burgers, Shakes & Fries does.
I taught my son a new skill. He was quick to learn how to use chopsticks. He loves ramen noodles, and learned the tasty joy of real Vietnamese ramen noodle soup. He also finally realized that cheap stuff from the grocery store is seriously overrated compared to the real thing.
A festival parade is always fun.
It’s hard to resist a stop at a good farm market. Some of the best produce around comes from this orchard. Freshly homemade peach ice cream made for a refreshing treat on a hot day. Why not take home a few peaches while we’re at it?
No trip to McCleod farms is complete without a stop at the museum and display of tractors and fire engines.
Sometimes, cool stuff happens closer to home. It became necessary to replace an old clunker car. At the dealership, a little critter in need of some shade tried to hitch a ride. While I agree that it would have been better off at my house in the yard, I was a little worried for it on the car ride home. Luckily, an officially certified wildlife habitat was only steps away. Did you know you can certify your own yard as a wildlife habitat? All you need are native and non-invasive plants, a water source, and a way for critters to colonize and live in some way. Here, a birdhouse, birdbath, and a few plants qualified. Honestly, this makes me giggle a little. But, hey… small steps, right?
We’ve been having a lot of fun this summer, but now and then I need a mental and physical pick-me-up. I got both on a pit stop to a coffee shop in North Carolina. I love a good coffee shop, I have to say. Hazel’s Coffee House is a great one in the town of Monroe. When asked what I would like, my reply was, “I’m not sure yet, but it must have caffeine.” When the first sips of java started kicking in, I noticed what they wrote on my mocha cappuccino. That moment when the coffee finally kicks in, indeed… Just what I was thinking! This cup of joe and the wonderful baristas that prepared it definitely made me smile.