Unfinished projects, demands of motherhood and a relaxing evening

In early May I decided that I would tackle a project that has been a thorn in my side for about 10 years.
Our basement…..

We have had great hopes and dreams for our basement since we bought the house 10 years ago.  We have envisioned many things for this great space.  We envisioned a bar, a theatre room, an exercise room, a bathroom with laundry, a craft room. 
The reality is we have 3 very active kids (and no money).
When I say active kids what I mean is travel baseball, softball, practices, pitching lessons, travel soccer at one point etc etc.  I think you get the picture.  These activities take up endless time (and money). 
Oh how we wish we would have just dove in and finished it all when the kids were little.  We didn’t do that and now we just have to deal with it.
In refusing to let this great space go unused, we did manage to throw up some drywall.  We put some baseboard heating down there and have been using it as it is for several years. 
This is my “office/craft room”.  I love this space because it’s all mine and it’s the last place the kids look when they need me.  heehee!
Enter May of this year… I decide that this is a project that needs to be completed and who better to do it than moi!! 
Thats right, little ole me!!
I checked some books out of the library and researched online how to mud and tape drywall.  These guys make it look so easy.  Heck, some of these books even have women doing it.  There isn’t any reason that I can’t do it.
So I got busy.  I started with the area under the stairs as just a trial; just to see how I did.  This was a good place to start and a bad place to start.
For one, if I really messed up, it would be hard for someone to see.  It’s also a small space so it wouldn’t be too big a deal for me hubby to redo something. 
A bad place to start because it was tight, and cramped and I had to do ceiling. 
Well I did it.  It actually looks pretty good.  I messed up on a couple spots but I Did It; and in the end, that’s all that matters, right?  Well, don’t ask a perfectionist engineer husband that question and you’ll be just fine.
Feeling very proud of myself I moved onto a closet and a hallway.  Completely mudded, sanded, mudded again and sanded again, primed and painted the walls.  They look pretty good for an amateur.
So then I started on the bigger room that we use as a game room. 
In the mean time, the kids got out of school for the summer. 
If you listen closely, you can hear me groan.
That means I will be spending most of my time as chauffer and lifeguard.  So much for working on the basement.
I was getting the other rooms done in about a week while school was in.  This other room, however; has taken almost a month. 
I’m still not to the point of being ready to prime the walls and frustration has set in in a major way.
We have drywall dust EVERYWHERE!! Thankfully, it has stayed in the basement mostly and hasn’t come upstairs to the main living area.
It is all over my office.
Probably ruining my electronics.

I know your suppose to cover this stuff, but I still use it.  Can’t move everything upstairs.
So in between spending all day Saturday and Sunday on the ballfield, dropping one child off at camp, having insomnia for over 7 days and an insensitative husband; my washer has decided it can’t get through a spin cycle without beating the drum to death, giving an error message, stop running and have to start over which it then runs through the same scenario again.  Therefore, making it impossible to finish a load of laundry without having to stand over it and ring water out of clothes before drying them.  {cringe}
Can someone say “Calgon Take Me Away”!!
I can…. except not Calgon; Bath and Body Works Aromatherapy, some fragranced candles and a glass of my favorite wine…

Add to that mixture my latest read and new CD and that’s what I call a relaxing evening:
Now, lets hope my windchimes hanging from the ceiling fan will play me a sweet melody to fall asleep to.  That is before mr insensitative rips it down because it keeps him awake!

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A day in the life of a fastpitch pitcher…..

Welcome to my world of fastpitch softball where our world revolves around practices, pitching lessons and tournaments.  Unlike baseball tournaments, the softball tournaments start early in the morning and if the team does well can last until way late into the night.
My daughter has been playing softball for about 3 years now and she has been pitching for 2 of those years.  We have spent countless hours (and money) on pitching lessons and practice. 
We got her on a travel team last Fall.  The basis of the team isn’t so much games but entering tournaments around the state.  We have been fortunate enough that most of our tournaments are 30 minutes to 1 hour away from home.
Her team was entered into a tournament just yesterday.  As I said, they start early in the morning.  Our first game was at 9am!!
In order to get to the field on time and get warmed up for the game, we have to leave the house by 7:15am.  That means we all have to be up by 6:30. 
That’s just too darn early on a Saturday!!
So, we are up, have the cooler packed, the car loaded and we are on our way.
Lets not forget it’s suppose to be 97 degrees today.  Good thing we got one of those big 10×10 tents 2 years ago.  It has come in so handy on the ball field as well as on the beach.
Victoria got the day started by pitching in the first game.  She did a great job and only gave up 1 run. 

Every pitcher also has their turn at batting.

After we won that first game, we got a game break then played our second game.

We won the second game, got another game break then came back out for our third game.
We have 2 pitchers on our team so they take turns.
Victoria got to pitch in our 3rd game of the day.

We won that game and got another game break before our 4th game. 
Did  I mention it was 97 degrees yesterday.  This is where the big tent comes in so handy.  During the breaks we try to keep the girls in the shade and resting.

We played and won our 4th game which meant we were going to the championship game.  YEA!!!
The girls fought so hard to get to this point.
We had another game break before the championship game started. 
The championship game finally started around 9:30 pm.  By this time we have been on the ballfield since 9am. 
12 hours of softball!!!
Here both of our pitchers are warming up before the game.
We lost our first game and since it’s a double elimination tournament; we have to play another game.  We start the 2nd championship game at 11pm. 
By this time our girls were half asleep.  Our pitchers were doing fine, but the defense wasn’t making any plays.  Our bats weren’t doing great and so we just weren’t able to pull it out.
We ended up coming in 2nd place.

The girls played so well all day we were so proud of them.

We finally left the part at midnight.  Why they can’t break up these tournaments into 2 days like they do the baseball I’ll never know.
Anyone who says softball is a “girlie sport”, hasn’t ever spent time watching these girls play ALL DAY!

Is it too early to start counting down the days?

To get back to this?
And to this?

To get back to my favorite beach chair?
To dig my toes in the sand and watch the kids get along enjoy the beach?

29 days… less than a month and we are headed off to our favorite summer-get-away-destination.  We started going to St. Simons Island in 2008 and haven’t missed some time there since. 
We love the small town feel and the great restaurants and quaint shopping in the village.  I love to go to the lighthouse and the pier.
The kids are all about the skim boarding.  It’s so nice that they have so much fun they don’t have time to fight with each other.

St. Simons Island, we are ready for you…. I hope you are ready for us.

How to bring a deck back to life…..

One of my favorite areas in my house, or outside rather; is my deck.  I love to eat dinner out there in the spring and summer.
When we moved to Georgia 17 years ago, I was so excited because I just knew we would be able to use a deck year round.
For the most part we have been able to.  However, it does get cold down here.  And it does actually snow.
Just look at my deck from last years snow….
My poor palm tree!

At the time, I just knew the snow was never going to melt.  We’re originally from Ohio so I am not a fan of snow.  Hence the reason we moved south!!
Well the snow did eventually melt and then baseball and softball started. 
Ugggg!!!! 

And so the deck has just been sitting here, no snow, no love, no flowers, no dinners.

Oh and the dead flowers were just lovely to look at

After looking out the window at it yesterday, I decided I could no longer sit by, I had to do something.  Even if it was just a little something.
So off I went to my favorite flower store and picked up just a few things.  I thought that anything would be better than nothing.
These guys were 50 cents a piece and half dead.  I tried to pick the least dead ones and hope for the best. 

We have flower boxes around the perimeter of our deck and I put flowers in them each year.  Their really easy to do and I can usually grow flowers in them with no problem.
After 1 1/2 hours, in the extreme heat, I finally got them all done.
Now to give everybody a drink of water and clean up my mess.
I got the table cleaned off, moved back to the center so we can fit around it for all our dinners we are going to have out there.  Hopefully 🙂

The palm tree is so much happier without all the snow holding it down.

Now, lets just hope I wasn’t too late planting and everybody grows.

Friday Night Baseball

Those of you that know us well know that we are are a huge baseball family.  Well, the boys are; I really just go along for the ride.
We try to go to at least 1 Braves game a year.
(That’s all that I can handle)
This year Zachary’s baseball team all went together.  I wasn’t going to join them but once I found out all the other moms were going, I decided to go.  This was actually one of the best games I have ever gone to.  I guess that was because I got to sit with people I know, I mean, we’ve all been together almost every day of the week and most weekends since February.  We’ve gotten very close!
I hate when we go to a game and we end up sitting with complete strangers who have to comment on every play and can’t stay in their seats. 
(Yes, it’s a good thing I only go to 1 a year)
My favorite part of going to Turner Field, other than the fact that it’s named after us, is the fact that their isn’t a bad seat there.   
We were sitting way up in the cheap seats, but the view of the field was still pretty good.
Check out that tv screen, how would you like to have that in your family room?


Brian McCann up to bat.

I love the view of the Atlanta skyline.

Zachary watching the game.

Victoria and Chatty Cathy, oops; I mean our friend Grayson.

The Braves played Cincinnati Reds, they lost but we still enjoyed our evening.  And because it was a Friday we got the end the night with fireworks. 
And now I’m done; don’t have to go back until next year.