What I did on my summer break, Part 4 (the last one!): August

September 29, 2013 at 4:52 pm

Every time I started to work on one of these “summer break” posts I went into it thinking I didn’t really take many photos that month. In all cases it turned out that I took a ton of photos even though I wasn’t even trying to capture things “for the blog”. We all take photos all the time now, don’t we? I took a lot of photos in August. This may be the longest post in the summer break series. You have been warned.

On the first day of August I met up with a bunch of my blogger friends at Tour de Pizza.

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My friend Matt McClellan, the owner, was nice enough to host us to try their new “paleo pizza” options.

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He also invited the folks from The Paleo Box, a paleo bakery in Tampa, to hand out samples the same evening so we got to try those as well.

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Matt had put out the word that he was redecorating the shop and wanted to line the perimeter of the walls with race medals. So we all brought a race medal to donate to the new décor.

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Since we are in there every week we can visit our medals any time. The boys liked picking out one of their medals to donate.

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The paleo pizza is basically their regular pizza (any toppings) on a millet/flax crust made by Sami’s Bakery. We tried the Greek pizza and something with a bunch of meat (I don’t remember).

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Both were awesome. We did get cheese, which I realize is not so paleo. But whatever. You can have it your way.

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Thanks for having us Matt!

The first weekend in August Cal went on vacation with my friend BJ and her family.

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She has twin boys, yet felt that she needed one more to round out their family vacation.

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They went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee (my old stomping grounds, not far from where I grew up in east Tennessee) and did all kinds of fun things like hiking, tubing, and rafting.

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Cal had a blast. Thank you so much to BJ and Paul for taking him!

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While Cal was gone on his bonus family vacation (without his family), Chad took Mack and a friend to Legoland one day.

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While they were on their way to Legoland, I met my friend Ali and her daughter Molly for breakfast at Trip’s Diner just down the street from my house. I had the breakfast strata.

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After that we went to the first Brocante Vintage Market.

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This is a monthly vintage market organized by my friends at Paper Street Market. There are multiple vendors and they bring the cream of their picking crop to this market. It was pretty happening for their first event!

I bought this little wrought iron patio set for $85…

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I have plans to paint it at some point, but I love it’s retro feel and diminutive size.

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Here they are after I plopped then down on my dirty front porch:

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I also got this end table:

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Bad picture, sorry. It is the perfect piece for that spot next to the sofa in our living room. I use it as my laptop’s home when not in use. It was a little pricey at $140, but is in great shape and is really exactly what I was looking for.

I also bought this little vanity ($100 – also to be painted, but I love the fabric on the stool), and the small rainy day painting ($18 – original, signed, and has the old original professional framing info on the back from an art store in St. Pete about 30 years ago), and the metal swirly frame (I can’t remember…think it was $15). I sort of have a plan for that in my addled mind.

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All in all I would say that Brocante Vintage Market was a success. You know we went back in September since I already blogged about that.

We also ran by The Iron Pelican Antiques where I picked up a bedside table for Cal’s room. I didn’t take a photo of that, but I did take a photo of their huge collection of vintage cameras.

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Molly got one.

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We had so much fun we had to go back to Brocante on Sunday. Actually, Mack and I met Ali and Molly for breakfast first at The Banyan Coffee and Tea Company (also just down the street from my house…I LOVE our new neighborhood). I got a breakfast burrito and an amazing salted caramel iced coffee.

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As I’m writing this I am on day 28 of the whole30 and this drink just looks obscene. But it was soooo good.

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Brocante was fun with Mack.

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These are actual Twinkie baking trays:

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On the second day there I bought this vintage teak tray ($15) which matches my teak dining table perfectly.

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Molly also picked up something there for Cal for his birthday…more on that later in this post.

That afternoon Mack and I went to see Wolverine at the Theater.

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Just for posterity, this is what Baywalk looked like that day:

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Locals will understand.

During August I had my handyman dudes at the house quite a bit doing small jobs, like removing the disgusting (to me) 20+ year old trash compactor from our kitchen.

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Does anybody actually use these things anymore? The concept seems so gross to me. They finished out the “hole” where the compactor used to be to match the rest of the cabinetry and now I have a very nice stainless steel garbage can in there. Much better.

I’m sure the neighbors appreciated this:

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That toilet was acting wonky but is actually a new toilet. I’m really not sure exactly why they removed it, but they ended up putting it back. This is no big deal if you are a handyman, I guess.They did many things around the house that needed doing (like installing some missing threshold molding, helping me hang shelves, building shelves in our outside pool storage room, repairing the gate in our back yard that accesses the alley, installing a new post for our hammock, and some other things I know I’m forgetting). This is the same father/son handyman team that did most of the work on our old house before we put it on the market and I like them a lot. I actually need to call them for some other things (always).

Mack had a neighborhood friend over one day while Cal was away (enjoying the now less death-defying hammock with a new post).

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We tried to give Mack an exciting week since Cal was having so much fun in Gatlinburg. One day I took him to Airheads Trampoline Arena with one of his friends and my friend “the other” Caroline and her girls.

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The owners of Airheads asked me if they could use my photos from my post about the time I checked out their TrampoLean Fitness class. We worked out a deal (my friends and I get to jump free in exchange, haha). I am pretty psyched to see all of my photos on this flyer. All of the photos are mine except for the before/after photos of the lady in the center at the bottom of the first page. That’s me jumping!

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Also in August, we got a rug for the living room (on sale from J.C. Penney for around $100 for a 9X11 rug). I saw it on the sale flyer and thought the colors were perfect for the room. I also liked that it is a light, flat weave rug as the over all feel of the room is light and casual.

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Chewie gave it a test run. I have since gotten a larger rug pad that better fits the rug.

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The boys got new shoes in anticipation of school starting.

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Cal turned 12 in August!

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We had a party at our house the day before his actual birthday.

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Remember when I said that Molly got something for Cal at the Brocante Vintage Market? She presented it to him at his party. It is REALLY heavy.

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It was an industrial spring!

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Cal has a spring collection, of course. This one is awesome. It must weight at least 30 pounds.

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Chewie approves (although seems somewhat confused as to why it is on his bed):

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The next day was Cal’s actual birthday. It was also the day to “meet the teacher” at Mack’s new school.

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Cal got to open all his birthday gifts from family.

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The next Monday was the first day of school.

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Back to making school lunches.

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Back to walking to school, now on a new route.

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Mack’s school is right next to this graveyard.

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On the days that I didn’t walk Mack to school, Chewie and I took long walks to a nearby park.

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The summer rains have let us see how our street floods when there is a prolonged heavy downpour.

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We are actually not in a flood zone and are in one of the highest areas in Pinellas County. However, our street acts as a drainage route for a nearby much larger street, so when there is a heavy rain our street has water running down it. But unlike in the flood zone where we used to live and often had high tide flooding that would last hours or days during a big storm, here the water dissipates right away once the rain slacks off. August definitely brought the typical Tampa Bay weather pattern this year. Rain every afternoon. Stifling humidity the rest of the time.

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When we would get back from a three or four mile walk, Chewie would retreat and not move for a few hours.

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One day in August I went running around with my pal Ali. We went to an estate sale in New Port Richey (or somewhere up there) and then ended up walking around downtown Dunedin where there are so many cute shops. I did buy some things for the house at the estate sale and in Dunedin, but I didn’t take any pictures. The only picture from that day was my lunch at a Mexican place we went to in Dunedin. There is grilled fish under that pile of tomatoes:

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One night Chad and I had a date night.

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We started out by going to dinner at The Tap Room at the Hollander Hotel.

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Several people had mentioned this place to me and I wanted to check it out. Again, looking at this (now) on Day 29 of the whole30, this looks obscene:

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It’s the Bacon Wrapped Mac & Cheese. OMG.

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Chad and I split it and also took one square home for the boys to try. Amazing. I had a pork chop for my dinner but didn’t photograph that. It was yummy. I did photograph my margarita.

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And also the pisco margarita that I had at our next stop which was the bar at Parkshore Grille.

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I didn’t really know what pisco was, but we Googled it while we sat at the bar. If you don’t know what pisco is, then you should also Google it. It was really good and now I want to try a pisco sour. I am severely missing alcohol after 29 days without a cocktail. I’m going to try to stick with lower carb drinks, though. I want to try just soda and tequila and lime juice. I’m really going to try to still minimize sugar after this whole30. (one more day!!!)

We had a little time to kill at Parkshore Grille before meeting friends at The Ale & the Witch to see The Applebutter Express.

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They are great and we had a fun night with our friends.

We ended August by having a Labor Day weekend party on the Saturday night before Labor Day. We had a bunch of friends over for a cookout, our usual MO here in the new house with this awesome pool and patio. There were lots of margaritas (my farewell margaritas before starting the whole30 the next day) and we had a swell time with our friends. I just used the word swell.

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And boom, I already posted that picture in my first blog post that I published at the beginning of September. So I’m caught up from the summer! Now I can focus on fall. Tomorrow I plan to write my LAST whole30 post, from this time around at least. I have a feeling there will be more whole30’s in my future. If you ever decide to do it you’ll understand why. I feel so detoxed right at this moment. I also feel like I am sort of back in the blogging groove. It only took a month.

Cya.

What I did on my summer break, Part 1: May

September 2, 2013 at 4:57 pm

The last thing I memorialized on the blog before precipitously taking a break was Mother’s Day. Other stuff I did for the remainder of May and took photos of:

Had our friends over to the new house many times…

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Did the Color Me Rad 5K with the boys…

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Said goodbye to The Pier, as it was closed for business until they can figure out what the heck they are going to do with it…

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Went to the annual Pinellas County PTA awards banquet…

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Went antiquing with my friend Cami…

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Celebrated my 44th birthday…

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Went on a date night that started out at a Yelp event at Tryst Gastro Lounge

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Our date night ended at The Canopy, the rooftop lounge at The Birchwood.

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Went to American Stage in the Park to see The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee with great friends…

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Celebrated Mack’s 9th birthday with a huge pool party…

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And took many walks in our new neighborhood…

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Did I mention that there is an abandoned mansion falling to ruin on our street?

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We call it Hogwarts.

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Our new neighborhood is very interesting and we are loving it.

So that’s all the photos I managed to round up for May. I’ll probably come across more photos from more fabulous events in May that I missed because I haven’t been very diligent about downloading and organizing photos. I wasn’t very diligent about even taking photos during my summer break so many events went undocumented or were memorialized by only one cell phone camera shot. It was glorious to leave the camera behind for a while.

Cya.