1.  After a long, strangely quiet week on the homestead BrightSide and I picked up Bear from camp on Friday afternoon. The house was, well, weird without her. Too still. Way too silent. And you know you’re missing your kid when you snap a pic of the unicorn towel in Target so she can laugh at it when she gets home.

2.  Not sure if it was the country mouse effect or there was something unusual going on, but traffic was 200% insane in the Raleigh area. People, people everywhere and fire trucks with flashing lights parked on every overpass. Still have no idea what was going on, I just know it took for-freaking-ever to get to our chica.

3.  Saturday dawned bright and – well, it dawned gloomy. Rainy and gloomy. BUT it was also a brisk 62 degrees instead of the 80-heading-toward-muggy-hideousness we’re used to so I embraced the gray. The tip-top expected temp for the day was 79. Seventy-nine degrees. Y’all, for North Carolina this was a Christmas in July miracle.

4.  I’ve been doing some heavy duty tech setup/trouble shooting so there went most of my Saturday. The kids were kicking back, enjoying the first truly lazy weekend of the summer. They didn’t even groan much about the two chapters I’d told them to read in their books. Will wonders never cease.

5.  Later we met up with some folks for a good old fashioned pot luck at a nearby park, and the weather was so gorgeous (the rain had cleared out by then) we took the dogs along. T-man and Bear were totally on board with this idea; BrightSide thought I was crazy had his doubts but eventually figured he’d let me crash and burn joined in on the canine fun. One other couple threw caution to the wind, too, so our Gracie met Gracie the Labradoodle. Man oh man, good times! The only thing that would have made it better was if we had a dog park so we could unleash the hounds. (Unleash the hounds!)

6.  Our Gracie was, for all intents and purposes, a good girl. Who’s a good girl? YOU’RE a good girl. Yes, you are. Yes, You Are. Did she pull a bit toward the food? Well, duh…she was good, not dead. We had a couple of close calls. I thought she was gonna ruin her sweet dog rep when a third grader walked by with a full plate at nose height but we made it through without incident.

7.  Phoebe was, of course, delightful. Poor Gracie. She’s like that kid with the perfect sibling – you know the one. They get straight As, play varsity sports, work a job, and volunteer at the local library in their spare time. Our big sweet lovable Gracie can be a red hot mess and, thankfully, doesn’t seem to resent Phoebe for not getting yelled at.

8.  Sunday did manage to dawn bright and sunny and still blessedly cool. I was shooting for a put together look but seeing as I spontaneously burst into flames at inconvenient moments I’d stripped down to my tank top by the time church started. I’m sure my fancy necklace carried the outfit in the end. Late 40s and the living is easy – except sometimes it’s sweaty, too. Bless.

9.  Bear tried to take the dogs for a “run/walk” on Sunday afternoon. What’s a run/walk, you ask? Well, that would be the brutally honest description of what Bear knows is going to happen since she’s been out of basketball training for about a month. But good on her for going. Since the dogs were too pooped to pup neither one really wanted to run for her, though, so Bear takes top prize for fitness activity yesterday.

10.  We’re heading into the very first week of the summer without any kid obligations. None. Nada. Niente. There oughta be a marching band blaring a freedom song outside our house today.