mikayla rae is seven!

And I’m just not sure how that happened. I remember being seven… how are these kids already there?! Time you thief you! Her birthday was actually the week prior to this day of days but as crazy fall schedules go this is when we could get together to celebrate. Just prolonging the birthday love! 

Kayla chose “sunset” as her theme… how very bougie of her! But yet I am not surprised she knows what she likes and that is that! Rob made a delicious meal right away and then we headed out to watch her soccer game. Quite the cheering section that girl had! Then we headed back to their house for cake and cookies and presents galore! And those cookies? Not only were they gorgeous but also delicious!

the millersville homecoming parade

It has been a few years since we have gone to this, and even longer than all five of us were there. But the stars aligned and baseball and hockey were both randomly postponed so there you have it! Parade time! We got excellent parking thanks to my brother for saving it for us…. The kids got a lot of candy and we saw all the fire trucks and the marching bands galore! It’s such a good parade even if this year is a little smaller than usual!

an etters farm day!

We did this last year and it just had to be repeated! Much to Toniel’s manfriend’s chagrin I am sure! The same group of usual suspects went, totally somewhere around 21 of us! We had the kids choose their pumpkins first and get the messy bits of painting out of the away before they took off into the corn maze. And take off they did! I’m not sure how many times they all went through it but there was definitely a lot of squealing and running happening. Then the tractor rolled up with a wagon full of hay for quite the ride! In my mind Zach hears none of the racket coming from behind him he just zens out to Enya or some such thing! After all that fall fun was done we headed to a nearby restaurant that someone could handle a party of our size. What a night! Doing all the things! Thanks so much to Zach for having us and to Toniel for organizing it!

youth field hockey night

Last week all the youth field hockey girls got the chance to play on the turf under the lights between the JV and varsity games… and they loved it! Their names were announced over the loud speaker…. Letty hustled and scored two goals and they won their scrimmage! Then they got hot chocolate and tiny little cupcakes before cheering on the varsity team before their game! It was a late night but a good one!

all the in between…

Oh all the in between. Not to be confused with the upside down…. There has been a lot of good foods, baseball, field hockey, friend time, final swims and staring longingly at the pool that will soon leave us….there was the elementary school’s annual fundraiser, Race for Education, lots of quality time with the boys while I’m working….the start of trumpet for David and basketball for Letty…good skies, good burgers, good drinks, fall things and then random summer things….tie dye and ISS views…. All the things!

apple picking on a day off

The kids had off last Friday and you know I just can’t let that go! We need to do all the things! We hit the gym, the library, the Farm Show and then it was time for fall things! Apple picking and checking out the sunflowers before some apple cider donuts! Not sure what I’ll do with the apples because this place charges a flat rate for the box but I’ll think of something! Maybe a cider? 

farm show week!

I realize if you aren’t from the area this all may seem a bit…. Strange to you. But we are from Manheim and when the Farm Show hits town it is where you go. Typically to get fries and milkshakes…. See some animals…. Lots of friends… and then leave. We hit it multiple times during the week as one does… and then don’t forget the Farm Show Parade! Toniel let a bunch of us use her house as home base and wow, that is the way to parade! Tons of food and friends right on the parade route and of course bathroom access for yours truly! The kids were living their very best life running around the closed streets before it started! And lots of candy was had by all! So glad this has returned this year for the kids to experience!

a day of fall fun at nonna’s

I know it was like…. 80 degrees but we still had the kids don their matching Boo Crew shirts and do all the fall things at Nonna’s one Sunday! They rode in the tractor…. Made fall cookies and then did their craft! Which really was more like the moms and Letty hot glue gunning all the things while the rest of the kids played. But they turned out cute in the end and the kids had fun! Making those memories at Nonna and Pop’s!

memory lane in sedgwick….

After the memorial we had lunch… and then headed to our old stomping grounds… Being back in our hometown… where I spent six formative years of my life was full of good memories! Some funny, some sad, some slightly ridiculous! Like the one room schoolhouse where I started my educational career…. We hit up the “hospital” my sister was born in. We drove past the houses of my great aunts’… saw my grandparents’ best friends who are still going strong…. the old church my mom went to for hymn sings as old-fashioned as that sounds… we met with our old neighbors… saw the church my Grammy cleaned…. Our house. Her house. The town dock. The reach where we could play on the rocks and listen to the waves. It was my childhood all wrapped up in an afternoon. And I’m so glad my kids got to see it. Even if they don’t “get” it. I made them go screenless in the car all day to get what it felt like to be a Trovato kid with those long drives and all…. They queried, what did you even DO in the car on these drives? And I said: count the telephone poles. That is what I did. 

We went back to Bar Harbor and it was raining so we had Chinese take out and called it an early night….. for tomorrow, we headed home. So long Maine, you have a very special piece of my heart! Forever and always!

and the reason for the visit…. saying a final farewell to grammy.

My Grammy passed away in those pre-covid days that seem like another lifetime… in February of 2020. One doesn’t have burials in Maine in the winter and then covid happened and Maine locked down their borders requiring quarantining…. So here we are… finally getting up there to have a little memorial service for her…. Nineteen months later. She always used to say to us “whenever you get around to it” as if it wasn’t a huge deal. But of course, it was. It is. 

It has been over eleven years since I was back to the cemetery and even longer for my parents…. As in decades, long... I stopped by Mainscapes to get some mums to plant at her grave and my Poppop’s. I like to think that for years to come they will bloom and grow and brighten up an otherwise dark corner of the cemetery…

There isn’t much to say. We paid our respects. We planted the mums. We cried. Such a great life she led…. What we did was not worthy of that life she led… but we were there, one last time. I am forever grateful she is back home in Maine and back with my Poppop. This day later on was full of great memories of Maine and our childhood so many of which involved them…. But this morning was about her and all that she meant to us. We miss you always and love you forever! The both of you!

a morning in acadia

I was living on a dream that the weather would be in our favor for Acadia National Park… and for the most part Mother Nature cooperated. In that it didn’t rain and sometimes we saw the sun. But that fog! You had to have reservations for Cadillac Mountain and can only go during that window… which was basically us driving through fog to park and walk around in the fog and mist and then drive back down through the fog. It was disappointing to say the least. We then spent the rest of the morning driving around the park stopping as we saw fit or as parking spaces allowed. We saw the Sand Beach (with a bunch of seals!!), Thunderhole, etc. We left for a late lunch back in town and then my brother arrived. He swooped the boys off to do their own thing and my parents and I took the kids to the pool. My kids loved skipping rocks and hunting for sea glass on the little beach behind the hotel…. I couldn’t get over how many pieces we found! Then we had a nice dinner at the hotel restaurant before calling it a night with a popcorn party!

we arrived in bar harbor…

We left after breakfast to conquer the final leg of our journey, arriving in Bar Harbor in time for lunch. After which we of course had to walk around, amidst the crowds of pedestrians and traffic… we did more window shopping….We had to get our Christmas ornaments! And travel hoodies!! We checked into our hotel and admired our ocean views before driving back down the road (our hotel was a mile from downtown) for dinner. Then came ice cream and hotel hangs under that gorgeous moon! So peaceful and quiet once our kids go to sleep!