Thursday, June 7, 2012


With fruit now back in the kitchen, it seems the little fruit flies are back too. So the trap is now back on the counter.

I bet you're thinking - wow that does not look attractive on the counter. It's an old giant pickle jar. A smaller jar would probably work just fine, this is just what we had on hand.

Now you're probably thinking - what is that stuff at the bottom? It's apple cider vinegar with a couple of drops of dish soap. And it works great. The trap did it's job. All the little buggers were caught in no time and it was super easy to clean up...dump and wash!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Cherry Pickin'

We were invited to pick cherries, so we picked a few.

I've never picked and preserved cherries before so I quickly looked some things up and this is what I learned...

1. When picking cherries pick with the stem on to keep the part where the stem is removed from getting brown. (So don't pick as we did...leave the stem on!)

2. Don't have a cherry pitter? No problem! There are lots of methods for pitting cherries, though the creative use of a paper clip is now my favorite. After watching some youtube videos about it, we gave it a try and had the cherries pitted in no time.

3. Cherries are a fruit and can be frozen! So now I have some time to figure out what to make with all these cherries.

What's your favorite way to use tart cherries?

Monday, June 4, 2012


There was a set of fun looking fish next to a hotel at the beach.

They looked similar to those things in the play place...

but it was art and Emily was sad when we told her they weren't for climbing on.

Saturday, June 2, 2012


The day we left Norfolk we drove out to Virginia Beach. It was nice to feel soft sand between our toes again.

The girls loved playing in a giant sandbox and wading in the water.

Emily built several 'towers' along the beach and definitely let it be known to everyone that she did not want to go home.

It was a really nice beach and next time we'll bring towels and stay awhile!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Visiting Norfolk

Last week we visited Norfolk, Va for a couple of days and had a great time exploring. Most of the area seemed very industrial, but we found some really great places to visit. The Chrysler Museum of Art has free admission and a glass studio where they do live demonstrations. The demonstration was fascinating and the museum has a fun drawing scavenger hunt for children.

There was a really great playground outside the Norfolk Zoo where we ate our lunch but it was too hot to play so we opted for the indoor play place at...the mall.

This was really one of the best play places we have ever been to. It was clean, constantly patrolled by a mall cop who pulled the big kids out, and it was huge with plenty of space and lots of things to climb, ride, and slide.

Or pull up and stand. Yes, this is her new favorite trick.

We also visited the Norfolk Botanical Garden, which was beautiful everywhere we looked.

They have a wonderful children's garden with fun educational areas. My favorite was the alphabet garden with herbs, vegetables, and other plants starting with every letter of the alphabet. The girls' favorite were the three different splash areas.

This was one of the smaller ones but just as fun. It was a pretty warm day so it was nice that they got to cool off.

Of course by the end of our visit it was hot so we went back to the mall...again.