Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Flurry of Activities! ~ Saturday 3/18/17

It's been a long hard week of doing nothing.  Greg and I decided to go walking this morning but just locally since I told him I'd drive our son to his new D&D encounter at the local comic book in the afternoon. My plan is to drop him off, stop by Walmart to get more mandarins and bananas, stop by Aldi to get onions and whatever else I might need, go home, and then go pick him up again.

My daughter didn't come home last night after all. I texted her at 11:30 p.m. to find out if she was still planning on coming home that evening but they were just leaving Universal Studios so she wisely decided to sleep at her dad's and come home in the morning.

Middle Son has his photography seasonal job interview at Disney today, I hope it goes well!

I told Greg last night about the bowl with a handle for the Artisan mixer costing $50 and he agreed it was expensive and then insisted on my getting it because he just didn't want to hear me whine about it and didn't want to try to rig up a handle. Whaaaat?! No!  I'm not spending $50 on a freaking bowl for a mixer that already cost way too much!  So I need to try to find a contraption that I could turn into a handle. Something like a vise?  Ugh.  I'm thinking that I'll "suffer" until Daughter has her own apartment, then give her the Kitchen Aid mini and buy myself a larger one.  With a handle on the bowl. Or I'll have to trade lots of points for it because $50 OOP for a bowl... no.  Argh, but I kind of wish I had it and there's no alternative and no one is selling it used!

Greg said he was going to cash in all of his Microsoft Rewards points for Amazon gift cards and buy me the freaking bowl but I threatened him with divorce if he dared doing that. It's the principal of the thing, I hate that we have to spend that much for a bowl that should have come with a handle in the first place!

Youngest Son got up all grumpy and said he didn't want to go to D&D so Greg and I decided to go walk after lunch. A few minutes later, Youngest Son realized that I had meant the D&D game in Clermont that he meant to check out so he changed his mind.  So Greg and I went walking on the Van Fleet Trail and told our son we'd be back by 1:30 p.m.

My foot was hurting because I didn't stretch it at all this week (and barely walked!) so I warned Greg that I didn't think I'd walk far. I didn't bring my fanny pack, just my camera, and he decided to leave his water bottle in the car since the weather was cool (it was in the 60s when we started) and we weren't going to walk far.

However, once we started walking my foot actually stopped hurting (huh!) and the weather was gorgeous, the many bicyclists who we crossed were very friendly for the most part and we were having a good time so we ended up walking... 6 miles!  Admittedly this was a mistake because by the end of the walk, both of us had sore hips, I could barely put one foot in front of the other, and we were very thirsty, LOL.  Good thing we had water in the truck :)  I took a few pictures, it's definitely Spring as there are more flowers and the butterflies and bees were out too.  The ditches have lots of colorful pink and dark pink phlox growing in them, I wish we had stopped so I could have snapped a good picture. I love phlox!

A lot of bicyclist passed us, and even the Ranger in his pick up truck (his shift must be to drive up the trail in the morning (30 miles) and then drive down in the afternoon!), but for the most part, we were alone. No one else was walking on that end. Good, that's the way I like it!

Showy Rattlebox

And this is too.

Azure Blue Sage, It was the flower we saw the most because the shoulders of the trail were covered in it.

No flower so I couldn't tell if it was some kind of a thistle or Tread Softly, but I wouldn't want to touch this anyway!  It was huge.

Peruvian Primrose willow

We saw lots of Zebra Longwings and Sulfurs but they wouldn't sit still for a picture. This Palamedes Swallowtail was busy drinking from an Azur Blue Sage flower so I was able to snap it.

We didn't spot any turtles,but there were turtle nests here and there. This one was a 2-level nest!

Some ditches had very little water but aquatic plants were growing nonetheless. Here, a Yellow Pond Lily (aka Spatterdock).

I spotted those white tufts on top of an algae covered ditch and was wondering what it was...

Greg suggested the alligators might have had a pillow fight. Ha!

Then I looked up sand spotted the flowers and seeds on this tree above the ditch!

The birds seemed to like those too. Too bad the sun was right above so the light was pretty bad.

Oh yes, it's enjoying the treat!  It looks like it's eating cotton candy!

Further down the trail I spotted this contraption. What the what?!  I told Greg not to touch it,
in case it was some kind of trap?!  It was after we saw the ranger and I forgot to mark the location
to tell him about it if we saw him again...

There are so many yellow flower doppelgangers, I've decided not to bother trying to identify these.

Another plant with the cottony seed pods!  I'm trying to remember what seeds I collected in my own garden that had been separate them from cottony stuff like this. Was it marigolds?  I don't remember. It was kind of a pain, though.

I really wanted to wait until this Great Egret tried to catch a frog, but we had to hurry back to the truck to make it in time to have lunch and take our son to D&D, so we had to leave. Poop. It was right there and I had a clear, unobstructed view for once!

And I had to rush to take these pictures of a male Northern Cardinal that had stopped near us too so this resulted in blurry images since I didn't have the time to use the other setting that Middle Son had taught me. Arrgh. But I see male Cardinals in my backyard all the time so I wasn't too broken up!

Yeah, another blurry shot. But it's so nice to see them in trees as opposed to my feeders, too.
The whole time we were walking, Greg was the one talking about food as he was craving "a big waffle!" whereas, for once, I wasn't hungry because my period had just started.  18 days late!  Gotta love perimenopause!  So we decided to have lunch at a local breakfast place that had opened a year or so ago (maybe even longer ago) but that Greg had never wanted to try out because it's right on SR50 in an old warehouse type of building and it just didn't sound good to him. I kept on telling him that I had looked at their website and it looked pretty nice but he thought the pictures were probably stock photographs and we'd be disappointed. Anyhoo, we called our son to see if he wanted to come to lunch with us (he did) and told him to bring his D&D stuff with him because we'd drop him off at the D&D place directly afterwards.

In the meantime, while we were still walking, Middle Son called me. He has just gotten out of his interview and it had gone very very well. Hooray!  He's waiting for Disney to do the background check and he thinks he'll get an offer in the mail next week. Let's hope so.  Anyhoo, he also asked if he could come over in the afternoon and we said yes.

So we all went and had lunch and that place?  It was phenomenal, all the more since our expectations were quite low.  We had a scrumptious breakfast for lunch, and made it to D&D right on time. I thought I had taken pictures of my food but there are none on my phone so I must have dreamed that.  Greg, of all people, was very excited about the restaurant and the fact that it's within 5 miles of our house, LOL. As for me, I signed up for their Loyalty Club, of course :)

Greg and I had Belgian waffles but ours had blueberries on them. I had bacon, he has sausage links. I had homefries, he has grits. I had sunny side-up eggs, he had scrambled. I had buttered toast, too.  Our son had cream-cheese stuffed berry pancakes and some sausage links.  Yum! 

We had told our son we'd drop him off and run to Aldi to pick up a couple of things and then we'd check with him to see if he wanted to stay for the whole game or come home.  At Aldi, we got bananas, eggs, and another bag of tortilla chips. I completely forgot to pick up the onions that I had meant to buy and that were on sale this week. Arrgh!  Anyhoo our son asked to be picked up and it turns out that the game was for higher level players than he is and was also quite full as a lot of people were attending. That was disappointing.  Maybe next Saturday's group will be more welcoming?  There are 2 D&D groups that alternate Saturdays.

My Daughter had texted that she had made it home from her dad's.  She brought her bike from his house so hopefully she and I can go on bike rides, woohoo!

On the way home, we stopped by Tractor Supply Company to buy our kayaks since Greg and I had decided to go kayaking tomorrow.  I had meant to buy them earlier in the week, but then the weather got really cold so I didn't.  Well, today, only one of the fishing kayaks was left in stock!  Oh no!  But there was a sale going on this weekend and it was $250 instead of $300.  Also, they had chicks and ducklings so we went to check those out. They were so cute!  Now I know something is wrong with my phone because I took a bunch of pictures of the chicks and they're not on my phone!  And I didn't dream that. Arrrgh.  I had put it in "low battery mode" at Greg's heeding because it was about to die and I think that decided to not save my pictures?!

Greg bought the kayak and I checked their website with the item number from the sales ad, and they showed that another store 20 miles away also had one!  This whole day I thought it was Sunday so I urged Greg to drive to the other store to get the kayak, thinking the sale ended tonight.  It wasn't until we were already halfway to the new store that I realized it was only Saturday, LOL.  Anyhoo, we picked up the other kayak, woohoo!  Our procrastination ended up saving us $100, well, minus the mileage to drive to the other store and back.  And also, while at the other store, I signed up for the Tractor Supply Co. loyalty club because, somehow, I had never realized that they had one.  I need to contact them to get credit for our first kayak purchase of the day.

Back home, Middle Son had arrived. While we were gone to pick up the 2nd kayak, Daughter and Youngest Son drove to Walmart to buy 2 life jackets.  When we got home, Youngest Son and Daughter were rearing to go kayaking so we all drove down to the lake just down the street and the kids took to kayaking like ducklings to water, hahaha.  Then Greg and Youngest Son did it. I didn't want to get wet today so I just took pictures.

Boat-tailed Grackle trying to catch tiny fish in the lake
Back home, it was 6 p.m. so I decided to order pizza.  I had gotten an email yesterday with a BOGO coupon so I redeemed it for 2 large pizzas and fed us all for $16. We used paper plates so no dirty dishes for me either!  I wish I had thought to get 2 extra large pizzas from Aldi earlier today because that would have been cheaper, but then I didn't need to add toppings and bake them too.  We all ate, Greg, Middle Son and I watched some Seinfeld, and then Middle Son drove back to his dad's.

It was very busy and expensive but very fun day!


  1. I think that little vial you saw is probably for Geocaching. They like to hang them in trees because they are harder to find that way.

    1. Hi Jada, thanks so much for the suggestion! I think you're right now that I think about it. I always jump to the worst conclusion, geocaching didn't even enter my mind!

  2. Why is it that ditches have the best flowers? I remember one time in South Carolina, where I would go for walks with my camera during my lunch hour, I ended up taking some close-ups of snap dragons in a ditch. One of my co-workers drove by, saw me, and stopped. "Miss Pixel, are you in the ditch on purpose?" I had to assure him that, yes, indeed, I was.

    Yeay on the deal on the looks like fun!

    1. Middle Son did tell me that in order to take the best pictures, you have to get closer to your subject so I'm not surprised that you went down in the ditch, hahaha.

      The kayaks do look like fun... do you know that I still haven't tried mine? Our son really loves it so I have been letting him use mine. But next time Greg wants to go, I'm going too!


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