I’m Feeling Like A Salty Rock Star.

Ya’ll! I’ve been working my biscuits off for the past few weeks on our upper deck/lanai area. I was an eager beaver to get it going after all the pool/deck work was done and before Florida turns into hellfire; 6we are on the cusp of that already with temps in the mid 90’s. The beds were there from before, but had to be updated because the area was trashed from all the work.

I had (40) 30lb bags of Mexican Beach Rocks delivered. (I still need 15 more). I lugged the bags of rocks in my little girl wheelbarrow which can only fit four at a time, from the driveway around the back of the house UPHILL and to the deck.

*Doing the math: 120lbs each load x 10 trips. It’s as hard as it sounds, no wonder I’ve been exhausted.

I’ve also manipulated and updated all my drip irrigation lines in the rock beds to my potted plants and in-ground plants.

*Adds Irrigation Specialist to resume.

It was hell getting the pool and deck finished. We realized early on that our pool contractors were possessed by satan. *sigh* I’ll forever loathe those people.

MOVING FORWARD AND LETTING THE ANGER LEAVE MY BODY

This is a little video clip I found on my phone of the pool area on a rainy day from a few years ago. BEFORE

I tried to place the videos side by side but WordPress said NO effing way lady.

AFTER:

Our lanai is naked; as in no screen/cage. I’m not a fan because mosquitoes love to dine on my blood, but we’ll see how long I can hold out.

DON’T BEE FOOLED BY THE ROCKS THAT I GOT

Behold the beauty of my rock beds…even the area that is waiting for more rocks looks pretty to me.

We’ve still got to install the stone spa spillover and Coach is finally able to start his outdoor kitchen. I’m SUPER excited about him having a grill again; my butt is tired of preparing the protein for every meal.

*wipes sweat from my brow*

I had no idea I had such a thing for Frogs; I found three that had been in here and I have a few more out in the butterfly garden. RIBBIT

I have an affinity for garden decor. The inside of the house is clutter free, but in my gardens, I love tchotchkes. Frogs. Bee’s. Mushrooms. Gnomes. Driftwood. I’m surprised I don’t have an old toilet out there with flowers popping out of it.

Wait, I just had a great idea…

KIDDING.

Anyhoo. I’m almost at the end of my project and I’m happy about that. I’m also happy that the pool is there because I’ve had to dunk myself many times to cool off; it’s been a lifesaver. We went with a salt system this time in lieu of just chlorine and I’m loving it. It’s weird to explain, but the water feels softer, less harsh, with no smell and it doesn’t burn my eyeballs.

Of course, I’m having to carry a salt shaker with me every time I walk out there to refill it, but what else do I have to do? 😳😜


Happy Mother’s Day! Whether you mother humans, pets, plants, that weird guy who works at the grocery store or your best friend.

Where would be be without mothers?

We’d all be dead in a ditch wearing dirty underwear, that’s where!

We started the pool and deck work in September—to say I’m sick and tired of having workers out my back door for that long is an understatement.
Anyone else excited to be FINISHED with a labor intensive project?

XOXO

Reinforcing Comma Placement. Being Educated On Angry Periods And Isn’t Being Right The Most Euphoric Feeling?

A text exchange with Lauren this past week had me confused for a minute but caused me to giggle:

I thought EXCLAMATION POINTS made me sound angry, but according to my oldest daughter, I was incorrect. She is not only the real police, she is also the grammar police so, I know she was being funny.


I have music playing on our Sonos system ‘throughout the inside and outside’ of our house from the moment I wake up until we sit down to watch the boob tube around 7:30-8pm.

Some days I’m all about John Mayer or Return Of The Mack Radio, but lately it’s been Chris Stapleton and whatever Pandora thinks relates to Chris Stapleton. Soulful country.

One day last week The Coach waltzed into my office while singing along with this oldie-but-goodie when he caught my attention at the second line.

The only two things in life that make it worth livin’
Is guitars that tune good and firm feelin’ women
I don’t need my name in the marquee lights
I got my song and I got you with me tonight
Maybe it’s time we got back to the basics of love

Waylon Jennings

Me: Hey, what if the women aren’t firm feeling any longer?

Coach: No, it’s Guitars that tune good AND firm, (comma) feeling women. The guitars are firm.

Me while giving side eye: And then he feels women? I don’t think so, let me look that up.

*Goes directly to the google machine for verification*

I said excitedly: WRONG!

Isn’t being RIGHT the best feeling in the world? I mean, if drug addicts felt right about things before trying drugs, they might never have traveled that path and instead tried to be RIGHT about things.

*I just made myself laugh*

Thank goodness I was right, but still, the only thing firm about me is my stance on recycling.

I love being married. You can literally annoy ONE special person for the duration of your life. Am I right or am I right?


*I just realized a FUN fact after listening to the entire song again: In the last line Waylon mentions “Jerry Jeff’s (Walker) Train Songs”; well we’re almost full semi not really circle because now, present day, we are friends with Jerry Jeff’s Son, Django. (yes, his real name)

Django Walker, Suz and Patrick Davis at a charity event the Coach put on in 2019. I was wearing wedges and yet I still look like a toddler next to them.

I know it was a stretch, but still I can’t help but see the significance of all of this. 😳

Anyone else get a bit smug when they’re right? How about angry looking punctuation? Is that new to you too?

XOXO

Wine Tour South-South, Wine Tour North-South And What’s With All The Pumpkin Soup?

Recently I was perusing my drafts folder and realized I have a lot of unfinished business. Most of it I will trash, but this post that I started 2018 after my 13 day trip to New Zealand with Kelly, well, I really wanted it on my blog for prosperity. I wrote a few other posts about our trip and the adventure of this Florida girl driving on the wrong side of the car on the wrong side of the road in a winter white-out. SO many unexpected things happened, but I can say for certain this is a country I would visit again. (if you care to read, I have a tag on the side of my page labeled New Zealand.)

After previewing this post and all the wine photos, I thought to myself: Kelly and I need a meeting.
But ONLY if that meeting includes wine.


I don’t know when it exactly happened, but at one point in the early 2000’s we switched from enjoying Italian Pinot Grigio to NZ Sauvignon blanc. I suppose I could go back and look at stock reports for the vineyards and see an uptick.

The wine was ONE of the allures to see NZ. Also, seeing my youngest favorite daughter.
I still can’t believe she traveled to NZ all by herself, although she does have an adventurous spirit. And had she NOT visited NZ, I never would have went there myself.

If you don’t know (because I didn’t) NZ is two islands; The North and The south Island.

We had two wine tours booked; One on the south part of the south island. The other on the north part of the south island.

FIRST WINE TOUR

While in Queenstown, (our first stop in NZ) our travel agent booked us a wine tour.
We didn’t know what to expect, other than wine tastings. We were picked up by a sweet gentleman and we were accompanied by another couple from the states. The tour was full of beautiful scenery, lovely stops to enjoy the views, learning some history of the area, some food and of course, wine.
Appellation Boutique Wine tour

The south part of the south island is known for its Pinot Noir vineyards because it is a much cooler climate than the north part of the south island. And this is where our New Zealand tour began, on the Southern part of the south island. Are we confused yet? No? but wait, there’s more.

The north part of the south island is where our beloved Sauvignon blanc is produced. That is the Marlbourough region.

We had many adventures on the south part of the south island, but this post is mainly about WINE and me typing north and south.

SECOND WINE TOUR

We thoroughly enjoyed the Sounds connection wine tour-Marlborough region; it was just a driver, Kelly, myself and a young couple from Australia who didn’t care for wine. I still can’t figure out why they did a wine tour; maybe they misread it as a Mine Tour? You know how kids are…

Spy valley was a really cool vineyard to visit; their cellar room was very modern and minimalistic. They are very close to a Spy Base that is part of the “five eyes” of intelligence alliances: the US, New Zealand, Canada, UK and Australia. Supposedly the spying is led by the US and of course, there is some disapproval around it all, but they, I need my NZ wine! Fun Fact: All bottles of Spy Valley Wine have Morse Code somewhere on them.

We really enjoyed the Framingham vineyard visit and occasionally I can find this particular wine at Total Wine and I have myself a travel flashback. (Currently, I can ALWAYS find it at Total wine and it’s high on my list!)

Cloudy bay has always been one of our favorites; Surprise Surprise, it’s also one of the most expensive. What can I say? I never had Trailer Park taste, even while I was there. Kelly actually spent a good part of her childhood in a trailer park too, so we often giggle about that and the fact that WE’RE IN NEW ZEALAND DRINKING our favorite WINE!

Lake Chalice was one of the smaller vineyards we visited in Marlborough. We were very impressed with the quality of the wine, the friendliness of the hostesses and the fact that they served us some food to go with the wine. Our other favorite thing aside from drinking NZ wine is snacking.

Pumpkin What?

While we were in NZ it was their ‘spring’ time. The weather was cool and crisp and we noticed that everywhere we ate they offered ‘pumpkin’ soup. I’m not sure if that is a year round option, or just in the cooler months but we partook several times and it was always a little different at each restaurant.

We finally asked someone and found out that it’s not always PUMPKIN even thought it’s called PUMPKIN. Sometimes it actually a variety of squash. Well played New Zealand, well played.

After 11 days of touring/driving the South Island from south to north, I was happy to drop off the rental car and to hop on a Ferry and head to the south side of the north island where Lindsay was visiting.

We had a such a great time. I would love to go back and see more of the South Island.


Soon after we arrived in Wellington we met up with Lindsay at a little restaurant for dinner and Kelly and I were….wait, what’s the word? It’s the opposite of impressed. Disappointed? Shocked? At the size of the wine glasses. So.very.petite. But at least the company was great and the wine delicious.

Ok. That was a lot of wine talk. If you don’t hear from me soon, I’ll get back to you in about 30 days.

Have any of my friends visited New Zealand? If not what is the ONE place you would like to revisit?