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Thursday, May 27, 2010

No grass under my feet

Over the next several weeks I will be traveling several thousand miles. This past week I traveled to Connecticut/Newport, Rhode Island for my sister's college graduation and yesterday I was in New York City for the day. We are spending Memorial Day in ocean City, Maryland with some dear friends and then I will be spending part of the week of June 9th in California for a conference and then going back to New York City the week of the 15th. Less than two weeks later we will be going to Georgia. Honestly - I'm tired just thinking about it!

This past weekend was full of celebrating in honor of my sister Brittany completing her undergraduate degree at the University of Rhode Island. Our grandmother flew up from South Florida to spend the weekend with us and I am lucky that I just saw her a few months ago in the Sunshine State.
We had lunch on the Newport dinner train which at times felt like the sinking Titanic because the track was a bit angled in some spots. Even though I ride the train to and from work everyday, I have never had a gourmet seafood meal and cheesecake while in transit. We went around the Narragansett Bay on the same rails that were once taken by the wealthy from Boston with homes on the Rhode Island coast.


Then we walked to the harbor and boarded the Majestic for a cruise around the Bay. It was pretty foggy at the beginning, but it did start to clear up. Something funny was on my camera lens so unfortunately several of my photos (boat one above) have a mark on them. We went by the oldest and second oldest lighthouses, in the U.S. I think, and also by the estate where Senator John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier were married in 1953.

Graduation Day was Sunday and the second Campbell child received her college degree!
Being at her graduation made me think back on mine and I don't remember anything about the ceremony except walking across the stage to receive my diploma and Blair whispering to me since she was seated behind me. I don't remember who the speaker was, but I'm sure a Dean spoke as well as Clemson President James Barker. URi invited John King of CNN to this graduation and I enjoyed listening to him talk about his past as a URI student working for the AP in providence and Boston. His AP job actually caused him to miss his URI graduation - this is the first one he has ever attended.

My sister is going to be working for a year and then attending graduate school to become a Child Life Specialist. I hope she finds/earns/enjoys lots of success!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Facebook Birthdays

On Monday I celebrated a birthday. I am now old enough to rent a car without paying any extra fees. When I was a senior in high school and wanted to drive to Myrtle Beach for Spring break that seemed like the best method for traveling. Alas, no one was old enough so we never went. Now I don't even want to rent a car!

Last year my birthday fell on a Saturday and I went with Brad, my mom, and some other relatives to an Orioles game with the Clemson alumni club. It was great fun. This year, my birthday fell on a Monday which didn't really make it seem like a birthday. Does that make sense? Since Facebook came to Clemson in 2004, I have been keeping "in the know" about what "friends" are doing, their families, their jobs, vacations, etc. Well on my birthday I could not believe that more than 75 of these FF (Facebook friends) took a few moments out of their day to send birthday wishes my way.

It made me think about how, to be honest, I do not send many birthday wishes on Facebook, but I do call my close friends and/or send them and/or their children cards. I think I should pay more attention to the birthday list on the right side of the facebook homepage because if these FF were able to bring joy to my day, I should do it for them too.

I was also a little intrigued by the FF who sent messages. of course I had cousins, aunts, and close friends, but there were also old friends, like from elementary school and college friends, who I'm not in touch with anymore, don't know why sometimes, and looking back it is so trivial, but regardless they decided to say Happy Birthday. I have started to shy away from facebook, or at least I think I have, but now I think that even if I don't personally think it is a "proper" way to keep in touch, sometimes you ened to take what you can get from friends who may not be in your life otherwise.

Thanks everyone for distracting me at work on Monday as I kept getting Facebook alerts ;)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Ours grows with lots of hard work and the help of my expert gardener husband!!

If you saw the last issue of Southern Living and the beautiful hydrangeas maintained by one southern man (yes, I said man), then you know why I love these plants. When we moved to Virginia in 2007 I was surprised by a large hydrangea that had the deepest periwinkle flowers in June and I knew I wanted to plant my own. This weekend, after reading about the type of light they like best, etc, we bought three of them. Consider them birthday gifts for me :). Last year we planted trees and this year we opted for two beautiful deep pink hydrangeas, a blue one, and a bright pink peony for the sunny side of the house.

Did you know that hydrangeas are known to bloom right around Mother's Day? Well, this was exciting news for me because that means they should always look nice right around the time of my birthday (May 10th). As you can see, our pink ones are in full bloom right now and our blue one is a few days behind. Last night I noticed some of the flowers opening up so I will take another picture once that happens.

In order to plant our new bushes, we had to till the ground, dig an edge, and mulch the flowerbed. Brad is a perfectionist, which is usually quite helpful, so he did the edging and I raked, shoveled and planted everything. I even buried an old rusty hook in the hole for the blue plant since it is supposed to make the color of the flowers better due to the acid content.

I am happy with how it looks and can't wait for them to keep growing. It sure is nice to see them everytime I pull into the driveway!