Today it was about 70 degrees, without a cloud in the sky. We went to Maymont and strolled around the grounds there. They have a petting zoo and lots of lovely little gardens — plus BEARS!
After we’d walked around the whole place, we plopped down on a grassy hill and just enjoyed the sunshine for a bit.
Today is Patrick’s birthday! I let him sleep in (meaning I kept Lola occupied for as long as I could), made him some coffee and gave him a Vampire Weekend CD (he really enjoyed them on SNL a couple of weeks back).
Eventually, Lola would not be ignored any longer. She woke him up with kisses and allowed him to rub her belly for a while. Then, bless Patrick’s heart, he went out in yucky weather to get me a Sunday paper. What a guy!
Earlier this week he got a special gift in the mail from my folks — a framed “slick” of the Fayetteville Observer page where his photo appeared last month. We’re trying to figure out where to hang it — in the meantime, here it is:
With some of the birthday money his folks sent, we took a birthday trip yesterday to Virginia Beach. We went to the Virginia Aquarium and saw otters, seals, all manner of strange-looking fish, and enormous, old sea turtles.
Here we are with an otter (not real, but hey):
After the aquarium, we went to Harpoon Larry’s for an early dinner near the beach. It was too rainy and cool to go down to the water — maybe next time.
To complete our aquatic theme, we stopped at Carvel on our way back home and picked up a Fudgie the Whale cake! I had told Patrick a million years ago how the old Carvel ads used to come on at my Grandma’s house on Long Island, and those cakes seemed like the most amazing thing a person could get. Here’s one ad I remember:
Fudgie didn’t quite live up to 25 years of hype, but we didn’t hate it. Here he is before getting hacked to pieces:
We are back safe and sound from NY, where I saw my first white Christmas in who knows how long. We had a nice time with Patrick’s folks, racked up some great gifts, ate our weight in candy and just relaxed for a few days.
We also saw I Am Legend, which was scary as all get-out and incredibly sad at one point. That’s all the details you’re getting out of me — go see it!
I’m happy to report that I am finally starting to feel Champ move! What a weird, amazing feeling. It usually happens at bedtime — just when I’m nodding off, this little tumbly sensation pops up in my belly. Tonight I took a long bath and that inspired some acrobatics, too! I can’t wait until Patrick can feel all that movement going on. It makes Champ more of a current presence to me instead of just someone I’ll meet eventually.
This weekend we’ll go to my parents’ house to celebrate the 50th wedding anniversary of my mom’s mom and stepdad, known to us as Mumsey and Grandy.
After that, New Year’s!
We had such a nice, relaxing Thanksgiving. We all packed up and went to West Virginia, where we stayed in a cottage at the Greenbrier. We ate a lot of food, walked around the grounds, toured a giant old Cold War bunker (from 1962-1992 it was prepared to shelter both houses of Congress in case of a nuclear attack!) and had lots of fun with the children. Oh, and Patrick and I discovered a love of checkers, which I let him win once or twice.
I got a miserable cold while we were there, so I didn’t take a whole lot of photos. We did get some nice shots of ourselves and the extended family for Christmas cards, though!
This weekend we’ll be decking the halls for Christmas. (Every other house on our street is already lit up like the Eiffel Tower!)