Friday, August 24, 2012

Tomato Worm

I have only had one tomato worm this year. I guess you need to have healthy tomatoes to have tomato worms! When I saw the damage to my plants, I asked Dallas to help me find the 'little monster'. It only took him a few minutes to find it and then came the question I hear every year.

"Can I keep it?"
Photo retrieved on Aug. 24, 2012 from Wikipedia.
 I now know how my Mom felt so many times. I should have him kill the thing but how can I say no to him. Out came our 'bug jar' and in went the worm and a few branches from my tomato plant. Dallas took care of it and tried to feed it fresh leaves every day. My poor plants started to look a little thin. Then the day before our Anniversary trip, Dallas' worm went into its chrysalis. He took it with him to Granny's just in case it came out.

Last night, while cleaning up the kitchen, I heard something strange. The moth had finally emerged. It would do this at 10 pm on a school night. I woke Dallas up and we went outside to see what his little pet had turned into.
Dallas carefully opening the top.

Our 'little' moth.

Dallas playing with it. I think he was as surprised as I was with the size of this moth.

The silly little thing stayed around. It was on our fence today. Dallas just had to play with it one more time. I know I will probably see its offspring in my garden in a week or two but it is totally worth it.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

First Day Of School - 2012

Where did the summer go?

Dallas started school on Tuesday (August 14). He is in the Third Grade. I still can not believe it. I love his new teacher...No really. I LOVE her. She teaches dual language in a self contained classroom so, for the first time, she is his only teacher. He is very concerned with this idea. How can one teacher teach him everything? Mrs. Duran has so much energy and she really seems to like her job (and I think that helps a lot). This is her first year teaching 3rd grade - she has always taught 5th grade - and I think she will be a good match for Dallas.

But I have gone of track a little bit! Dallas' first day of school was like all the other (when Dad is home) with a few minor changes. He wanted to ride the motorcycle to school. Yup. Right. My thought exactly. It isn't really scary when David takes him around the block but traffic is a totally different thing. They ganged up on me and they won. "Why did we buy him a helmet if I wasn't going to let him ride the bike?" Nope. I didn't have an answer either!

Alex helping Daddy get the bike ready.

David and Dallas ready to go to breakfast.

Breakfast at McDonald's. It is their first day of school tradition. I would rather stay home and fix a real breakfast!


Finally at school. Yes - I followed them in the car and held my breath for every turn and stop. Dallas did great and loved every minute.

When did he grow up?

Attitude. I guess he was tired of me taking pictures!

I  convinced him to let me take just one more.

He actually let us walk him in and even gave me a hug before I left. I know it won't last much longer but maybe I will get one more year.

Sunken Gardens

Our Anniversary is usually very predictable. Every year we do the same thing. This year was no exception. David always takes me to a Zoo and we have a nice dinner somewhere. It is simple, but it is our tradition. Since this year was our 10 year anniversary, David decided to spoil me. My parents kept the boys and his Dad kept our dogs for a whole week while David and I relaxed in San Antonio, Texas. We did the Zoo, but we kept missing our boys. Everywhere we looked there was something they would have loved. I think I am too attached to them.

The real star of our 'Zoo Day' was the Japanese Tea Garden or Sunken Gardens near the Zoo. A little history for everyone:

The Sunken Gardens were developed on land donated to the city in 1899 by George W. Brackenridge, president of the San Antonio Water Works Company. The ground was first broken around 1840 by German masons, who used the readily accessible limestone to supply the construction market. About 1917, City Parks Commissioner Ray Lambert visualized an oriental-style garden in the pit of the quarry. His engineer, W.S. Delery, developed plans, but no work began until individual and private donors provided funds in 1918. Lambert used prison labor to shape the quarry into a complex that included walkways, stone arch bridges, an island and a Japanese pagoda. At the entrance to the garden, Mexican-born artist Dionicio Rodriguez (1891-1955) replicated a Japanese Torii gate in his unique style of concrete construction that imitated wood. In 1919, at the city's invitation, Kimi Eizo Jingu, a local Japanese-American artist, moved to the garden. In 1926, they opened the Bamboo Room, where light lunches and tea were sold. Kimi and Miyoshi Jingu maintained the garden, lived in the park, and raised eight children. Kimi was a representative of the Shizuoka Tea Association and was considered an expert in the tea business nationally. He died in 1938, and 1941 the family was evicted with the rise of anti-Japanese sentiment of World War II. For years the garden sat in neglect and disrepair, becoming a target of graffiti and vandalism. Due to limited funding, the city threatened to close the garden, but the community and parks supporters rallied and lobbied to keep the park open. In 2005, the City used about $550,000 in bond money to reroof the pagoda-like Pavilion and the Jingu House. In 2007 they began a $1.6 million restoration campaign to restore the ponds and waterfall in conjunction with the City of San Antonio. For the public re-opening on March 8, 2008, Jingu family members returned to San Antonio. Mabel Yoshiko Jingu Enkoji, the sixth child of Kimi and Miyoshi Jingu, who was born at the Garden, was the senior Jingu family member at the event. In 2009, the San Antonio Parks Foundation and the City of San Antonio began work on the $1 million restoration of the historic Jingu house. Work was completed in October 2011. The building is now being operated as a restaurant by Fresh Horizons Creative Catering, serving light lunches as the Jingu family did in the 1930s.  (Wikipedia, 2012)
David really did not want to see the gardens but, once we were there, he was amazed. They are beautiful. I could have spent all day just walking around the flowers, ponds, and waterfall. I can not picture the huge, empty pit it was originally.


Wikipedia (2012) San Antonio Japanese Tea Garden, retrieved on 16 Aug 2012 from

Friday, August 3, 2012

Anniversary and Blog Break

I married my best friend ten years ago today and I thank God everyday for such a great husband. I am truly blessed to have him to share my life with. We decided to do something very different this year to celebrate - we are on a vacation without the boys. Dallas is almost 9 and this is the fourth time I have gone anywhere without him. Alex is almost two and I have only left him three times. Thankfully they are with my Mom and I know she will take great care of them....but I am still a nutcase.  I feel guilty and a little lost.

We are in San Antonio, Texas. Our hotel is by the river walk and our room is beautiful. I actually slept all night without having to get up with Alex or the dogs. It has been three years of middle of the night cries and I was exhausted. Then today David surprised me with my first massage and I think I am hooked. We did a couples Swedish massage and it was the most relaxing hour of my life. I wish we lived near a big town. I don't know if our little area even has a place to get a massage.

I was completely shocked by how long it has been since my last post. I have completed a lot of projects but they just haven't made it on here, yet. We installed a sprinkler system in the backyard last weekend and we survived with just a few fights. Tank escaped from the backyard and ended up at the zoo. Thankfully I was able to find him and he is now home safe and sound. School starts in two weeks for just about everyone. Dallas is going into the third grade. Where did the time go? It seems like yesterday when I was walking him into kindergarten. David and I start our college classes again this month. Hopefully we will finish our degrees before Dallas is in college!  And poor little Alex has another appointment with his ENT to find out if he will have surgery next month. They think they can help with his sleep issues but I am not so sure. Maybe sleep is over rated......

It is getting late and I really hate typing on the iPad. I will try to catch up on everyone's blogs this weekend and to catch up my posts soon. I hope everyone is having a great summer!