Category Archives: Wee one

Please Remember to Say I LOVE You

I’ve got to finish my in memory of my mom posts but that will have to wait.

Today, Hubby told me to write for me not necessarily for an audience.

So I am going to talk about some of the feelings I have been feeling during these last few days. Maybe if I get it off my chest I’ll feel better.

Everyone has seen how much closer Mom and I have gotten since Tanya died. However, it was because I showed her mercy during her final years of her life. I showed her what it was like to have a joyful life. Not a perfect life but a life that discovered joy in finding adventures whether it be going to the sunflower field and then a local orchard or driving around random routes. Or just finding her one of my many imaginary boyfriends.

What people don’t realize is that she and I had a strained relationship. I knew that she loved me. She showed her love in quiet unassuming ways. However, I NEVER got to hear her tell me that she loved me.

I know she was proud of me and the boys but she NEVER told me that she was proud of me.

Sometimes we need that reassurance. We need our parents to tell us how proud and how much we love them.

Now that I’m a mother, I make sure I tell my sons how much they mean to me. The Oldest is more receptive to it. We tell each other several times a day “I love you.” One time he got off the phone and realized he hadn’t said it so he called me right back to tell me that he loved me.

The Youngest is going through the I’m a teenager please don’t say that you love me because I might not respond. Which is okay because I will still tell him that.

Now that my mom is gone, I can let my truths out. I’ve kept quiet about some of how I felt over the years out of respect to her. Now it’s time to be like dandelion seed and fly free.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Our Adventure | September 29

The past week has been trying for us. The Oldest had his first heartbreak and break up. I’ve had to be a “friend,” mom, and sounding block.

As I said, it’s been trying. For 2 weeks prior to the break up, we have gone through mopey Oldest, angry Oldest, and then happy Oldest. It was hard to watch this roller coaster.

Last Sunday, she broke up with him via text and then immediately blocked him. He has to see her because they are in 2 classes and ride the bus together. Needless to say, he’s gone through a multitude of emotions. He is now happy and sees the break up is a good thing.

During those last 2 weeks, he would complain about being bored but refused to do anything. It was very sad to watch.

This weekend, I suggested we do something on Sunday afternoon. I was thinking of the Huffman Dam but he and his brother decided to go to the Englewood Dam. We also visited a favorite local restaurant for dinner. It was nice to have him back.

Not only was he was back so was the Youngest. My soul needed that because we used to go on a lot of adventures when they were younger.

Off topic: I’ve recently discovered Lizzo. She has great lyric in this song. “Don’t text me. Tell it me it to my face.” That’s how the Oldest is feeling right now. He is big on communication. That was the problem with the relationship.

Onto to the photos from our adventure:

After spending time in nature, we went to a favorite restaurant for our dinner. Airline Dairy Creme is located close to the Dayton International Airport.

I’m so happy that I got to spend some quality time with my teenagers. They are growing up so quickly.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Sunflowers | September 9, 2019

Every year or almost every year since 2010, we have a tradition of going to see the sunflowers in a town near us.

They have a field that blooms for about 2 weeks. It is absolutely gorgeous so many people stop to take photos and even draw pictures of the sunflowers.

It’s gotten so popular that they have a parking area which they never had before a few years ago. I used to have to sort of parallel park in the grass near the field.

As I said, we go every year or almost every year. I have found photos from 2010, 2011, and then 2014-2019. I don’t remember if we went in 2012 or 2013.

This year, we took the Oldest’s girlfriend. She had never been to the field before so it was fun to watch her discover the absolute beauty of the field.

While walking through the rows of sunflowers, you have to be careful of the bees because they love to hang out there and the prickly plants that grow near the sunflowers. Other than that, it’s fun to get lost in the hundreds of sunflowers.

We also have a tradition of going to the local dairy that is just down the road after visiting the sunflowers. So we did that also on Monday. Oldest’s girlfriend hadn’t been to Young’s Dairy for a while so it was fun to treat her to ice cream made with milk from cows from the dairy and to watch her feed the goats.

Visiting the sunflowers is one memory that the boys are going to carry with them for the rest of their lives. Even though Youngest would have rather stayed at home and played on the computer.

Enjoy the video.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Make memories that will stay with you

I have 2 teenagers in my house. One who turns to his mom for advice and will continue to let me know that he loves me. The other has decided doing anything with mom is pure torture. He may or may not say that he loves you when you tell him that you love him. It’s frustrating.

I love how the Oldest has started to embrace being a teenager. He doesn’t hang out with many of his friends outside of school. However, I know he has a group of friends that he calls his Guys.

He also has a girlfriend which is new territory for him. They’ve been dating since April.

So what would my advice be to my 2 teenagers? Since they are both so different, I have different pieces of advice.

Oldest – Continue to hang out with your Guys. Make memories with them. Girls come and go but a great friend will stay with you.

Young love is new and exciting. Don’t change yourself for her. Treat her with respect. Remember your family and how we raised you. Let her know you care about her. Think with your mind not your hormones.

Communication is key. Always remember to communicate.

Youngest – Family is important. When we want to spend time with you, we want to create memories. We love you. Don’t forget that. Please take time to say I love you and not the word yes when we speak to you.

Yes, we want you to do chores. Please do them correctly the first time or we will harp on you until you do it right.

Grades are important. Please begin to turn in your assignments. Don’t be a class clown.

Have a magical day,
Traci

8th and 10th

How can it be? My boys are in 8th and 10th grade now. They both allowed me to take their photos in the morning. In the afternoon, it was touch and go with the Youngest.

Before I left the house, I got a few photos of the Youngest. I was lucky he was willing to go outside with me. This was taken at almost 7 am.

After yelling at the Oldest to get moving because car drop off was going to be busy because it was the first day of school, I was able to get a photo of him in front of our tree. I took a few other photos in the car during drop off.

A tradition is to take photos on the first day or close to the first day of school in front of our tree in our yard. I do a photo session. Some years, the photos are great. Other years, well they are quite interesting. This year was a combination.

For some reason, Youngest decided we needed to include Dobby, our 15-year-old dog, in the photos. As you can see, Dobby was not impressed.

Next one to get his photos was Oldest.

Then I asked the boys to take photos together. They decided to be silly about the whole experience.

Next the red nose and Davy Crockett hat came out and the silly photos were taken.

Finally I asked the Youngest to take photos without Dobby. This is what I got.

I guess the photo session was done at that point. There wasn’t going to be anymore cooperating with me.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Mom, What’s For Dinner? – Week of August 11, 2019

Jump to Dinner Menu

All of the sudden, the Wee One has gotten so much taller. I think he’s grown 3 to 4 inches in the last few months. He is almost as tall as me.

So I now call him him Youngest because it makes him upset when I call him the Wee One.

Anyway on Saturday, he kept saying “Mother, Where’s the Food?” Mind you it was 4 pm and not time for dinner. He found him some food to hold him over.

This is the theme of our household right now. Having 2 teenage boys – 14 and 16, they are constantly hungry. One or both of them are going through growth spurts all of the time. Argh!

I’ve been meal planning off and on throughout their childhood. Last year, it fell apart. We have been doing better with it. So when he comes up to me, I can reply this is what we are eating at such and such at ___ o’clock.

Of course, that does not mean their ALWAYS hungry bellies can wait until the scheduled time for dinner. They may still get food to eat. I just have to remind them they need to still eat dinner when I put it on the table. The Youngest is usually pretty good about still eating what I have cooked.

Sunday – Buttermilk chicken, Roasted potatoes, Sweet Corn Salad or Corn
Monday – Honey Garlic Chicken, Rice, Stir Fry Veggies
TuesdayMini Meatloaf Muffins, Mashed Potatoes, Corn
Wednesday – Leftovers
Thursday – Cheese Steak Sloppy Joes, Chips, Raw Veggies
Friday – Lime Cashew Chicken, Rice, Green Beans
Saturday – Chicken Dinner at the Sweet Corn Festival (Yum!)
Veggie Egg Scramble in the Microwave
Toast
Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli with Quinoa
Yogurt Cups with Granola
Mini Salad

Cinnamon Apples with Almond Butter
Trail Mix – I get mine from Trader Joe’s but you can certainly make your own.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Into the Mist

A few weeks ago, the Youngest and I embarked on his 14-year-old trip and my EPIC trip with my friend. I made the decision for us to all ride the Maid of the Mist.

The Maid of the Mist is in the New York side of Niagara Falls. We were staying on the Canadian side of the Falls. We were left with 2 choices: drive to the Maid of the Mist which on my GPS unit said was 10 minutes or walk which was about an half hour.

The GPS saying that it would take 10 minutes did not take in account of us probably getting turned around, going through border patrol, and trying not to hit all of the tourists. So it could have taken us about the same amount of time as walking.

So we walked over to there. The Youngest took a point off the experience of going to the Maid of the Mist because of the walking.

I’ll save my story of going through border patrol for another time.

We got to the Maid of the Mist as they were getting ready to depart. We were told to HURRY and get on the boat so we didn’t have to wait for the next boat.

Trying to get the poncho on, take a few photos of my friend, and then put my DSLR camera in ziploc bags inside my backpack under my poncho was a feat.

Luckily my phone is water resistant so I was able to get photos and videos until we were under the Falls. Once the water was coming down us in buckets, my phone was put into another Ziploc bag and put into my pocket under my poncho until it was safe to bring it out again.

The Youngest stood at the very front of the boat for the majority of the trip. He enjoyed getting wet and the whole experience.

When it was time to depart, he was ready at the gate. As he was standing there trying to wipe of the water from the gate in front of him, one of the workers was also doing the same thing as him. I don’t know if the Youngest noticed but I did. I thought it was cool.

After we got done with the Maid of the Mist, my friend and the Youngest got rid of their ponchos. I still have mine.

Oh and the Youngest gave the Maid of the Mist a score of 9 out of 10. The only point off was for the walk to and from the attraction.

Have a magical day,
Traci

A Little Kindness Helps

I’m currently on a 14-year-old trip with the Youngest. HE turned 14 on Saturday. When his brother turned 14 two years ago, he went on a trip to Hershey Park.

Back in March, I asked the Youngest where do you want to go? He had 3 criteria – a foreign country, a beach, and Disney. We almost had a beach and Disney but those plans fell through.

So we decided we were going to road trip to Canada. He has a youth passport that allows him to travel to Mexico or Canada by land or Bahamas by sea.

He then decided he wanted to see Niagara Falls again so we are going to meet up with a friend at the Falls.

On Friday, we are traveling to Erie, Pennsylvania for his beach visit.

We found a Disney Store in London, Ontario so he did get his Disney fix. He doesn’t ride the rides so just having some of the magic helps.

Onto my story:

When planning out our trip, I noticed we could go through either Detroit via the bridge or tunnel or travel north for about an hour or so to Port Huron. There is a beach there so we would be able to fulfill his wish.

I pulled up to the gate and noticed that it would cost me $20 to use the beach because I was from out of state. We were only planning to be there for such a short time. It was basically a rest stop on our trip.

I explained to the young lady that we were on our way to Canada and that we were only going to stop there for a little bit. We had never been to Lake Huron and hadn’t had a real get out and walk stop since the Michigan Welcome Center. She allowed us to go on in without the payment.

I thanked her and let her know we were only going to be there about half an hour which we adhered to that promise.

Sometimes kindness goes a long way.

If I didn’t have that time, I wouldn’t have gotten this shot of my Youngest. We are going to print it out and frame it.

Have a magical day,
Traci

Zoo Atlanta | August 2013 – Super Trip Day #10

As I was organizing my posts from this site, I realized I never finished writing about our Super Trip in 2013. The Super Trip took place almost 6 years ago when the boys were 8 and 10. Now they are almost 14 and 16. Oops!

When I left off, I got as far as Georgia Aquarium but not Zoo Atlanta and Huntsville, Alabama.

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Ark Encounter – Part 2 – The First Floor

Part 1 – The Drive Down

In December, my church made a trip down to the Ark Encounter in Williamsport, KY. Join me on Saturdays as we explore this majestic building.

After you pull up to the Ark Encounter, you usually have to park your car and then ride a bus to the actual ark. We just stayed on the bus. It’s a surprise when you actually pull up to ark. You see how massive it truly is.


The Oldest thought it was funny to put his feet on the grass just because it said keep off the grass.

These topiaries that were lit up after dark.

Some of the decorations on the first floor

Some of the storage areas on the Ark

Noah’s prayer

More storage

Some of the animals that could have been on the Ark.

Looking Up – The boys thought it was funny to go up to the second floor and say high to me. This was right before the Youngest decided to throw his hat down to me.

This was right before you went up to the second floor. There was a model of the Ark and information about how truly big it was when Noah spent 100 years building it.

Join me next week for the tour of the second floor. You’ll get to see the door that was used to get in and out of the Ark and a llama.

Have a magical day,
Traci