Happy 9th Birthday Alexis!


Dear Alexis,

Here we are again…another year, another birthday. You are growing up so fast! Too fast!! The time just melts away.

Each year you continue to learn and grow and generally amaze me at every turn! You have such an amazing outlook on life and you inspire me everyday. The way you look at the world and the people around you is truly incredible. You have the most positive outlook and look for the good in everyone, even if it’s very hard to find. You’re my little Pollyanna in more ways than one.

This past year you discovered your love of the ocean. Apparently that’s genetic, because you most definitely got that from me! You had been to the ocean several times before when you were younger, but last summer we drove over to the beach for the day a couple of times and you were in your element! You were finally old enough to appreciate the environment and have a rocking good time! I love to see you discover new things.

As you get older you have so many things going on and sometimes I wish things would just slow down, but life marches forward. You started yoga and love your classes, your teacher and your friends you’ve made from attending. You continue to be involved with girl scouts and church, throwing yourself in to everything you do 150%. You’ve taken classes, you’ve gone on adventures, you had your first sleepover at your friend’s house, you had your first sleepover at home…In short you’ve been busy living life to the fullest and enjoying it all as it goes by. I like that about you.

This coming year brings more adventures your way…a trip to Frisco, NC in September for a week on the beach, New York City in October to celebrate my birthday, just to name a few. I will continue to watch you meet the world head on, making friends and having fun along the way. It’s fun to see you breeze through these things with ease and aplomb, smiling and laughing, making memories as you go. I like this about you too.

The most important thing to remember as you embark on 9 and steam toward 10 is that you should always hold on to your fascination with the world. Life will never be dull for you if you keep that interest in the things around you, and caring for the people you meet, that comes so naturally to you. You have an amazing spirit Love and you need to hang on to that. Don’t let anyone ever make you be less you because they don’t understand where you’re coming from. Remember what they think doesn’t matter, the only thing that matters is what you think, and you’re such a good person deep down inside that you always, always have that going for you.

I often tell you that you’re my favorite, and you in turn tell me, “But Mom! I’m you’re only!” in which I reply, “It doesn’t make it any less true!” and believe me it doesn’t! You are the light in my world, the wonder in my existence and I love you with all my heart! Never forget.



Originally posted on Daffodil Lane.

Cocktail Time: Fruity Watermelon Sangria

Fruity Watermelon Sangria

I love Sangria…

It’s a fresh, crisp, fun, little drink…

In short it’s just perfect for summer! And summer is definitely here!

Sangria is fabulous, especially in summer, but I caution you, this stuff has a lot of alcohol in it, so this is more of a stay in for the evening sort of drink, than a go somewhere after you’d had some type of beverage. It’s especially fun to make in the summer when so much fresh fruit is available locally!

Now let’s talk some Sangria!

What You’ll Need:
1 cup of watermelon chunks (Note: I like to cut the chunks pretty small, about the size of a grape, but of course square.)
1 cup of blackberries
1 cup of cherries, pitted
1 cup of blueberries
1/4 cup of organic cane sugar
1 bottle of watermelon wine (Note: I used Solomons Island Winery’s NV Mist Watermelon White Merlot, which is from a winery here in Maryland.)
1 cup of pineapple vodka
1 cup of key lime vodka
1 cup of lemon vodka
1 cup of triple sec or orange vodka, or heck both if you’re feeling really crazy!
Fruity Watermelon Sangria

The fun part about sangria is you literally just dump it in a very large pitcher (I prefer to use glass.) and then stick it in the fridge for at least 6 hours, stirring occasionally to let the flavors meld.

And remember, just to reiterate, you need a very large pitcher to do this! The bigger the better!

This is what I like to do…

Place the fruit in the bottom of your pitcher and toss a bit to mix.

Sprinkle sugar over the fruit and let it sit for 10 minutes.

Add wine, vodkas and triple sec and stir to mix.

Place in the fridge for at least 6 hours before serving!

To serve you can serve it straight up or over ice.

Fruity Watermelon Sangria

Notes: You could use other kinds of fruit. Peaches would be fabulous, or chunks of pineapple, or strawberries, etc. If you like it, throw some in! That’s the joy of sangria, it really is a mix and match sort of drink, so throw in what you like! This is just perfect for that backyard picnic or cookout, or even coupled with a cool salad for dinner on a very hot day. Mix it up! If you can’t find watermelon wine you could use a sweet picnic type wine, either red or white, it’s up to your tastes. I’ve done this before each with The Gollywobbler Red and White Wines from Saint Micheal’s Winery too, which is also a Maryland winery.