Tag Archives: Vacation

Miscellany Monday: The ‘I’m back’ Edish

once again, linking up with Carissa today-
miscellany monday at lowercase letters

 1. After many days of traveling, I’m finally back in my own home on my own couch lazily drinking my own coffee. (Not that I particularly object to any of the coffees I had while away- except that disappointing one from Tim Horton’s.) And I’m finally catching up on everyone’s blog posts. So much reading, so little time for laundry!

2. Grace was a little trouper the whole time, tolerating her car seat, late nights, and missed/short naps really well. Though, like I told my dad, traveling with a toddler is not for the faint of heart, especially when you spend as much time in the car as out of it.

3. I did have a plethora of help the whole trip, but I was so glad to be home and have Joe there to take over while I crashed. I’m so glad that I’m not a single parent, and I have so much respect for all those that are and the responsibility they have.

4. So, the first (full) day in NY, my mom, sister and I hosted a shower for my best friend…. and the only photos I took are on her dad’s phone. oops. It was fun to throw everything together and get to celebrate her upcoming nuptials in person. I love you, Kristi!

5. On the way home, I discovered Francesca’s in South Bend. How have I never come across this before? I loved it, except when I realized that I’m an old woman because every time I saw a sweet little dress I’d think, “Cute… but if only it were 2 inches longer.”

6. I got to enjoy a lovely Mother’s Day yesterday. God delivered a gorgeous sunshiny day, Joe delivered by taking us to brunch (I didn’t cook OR have to clean up!!!), and Grace delivered by being (mostly) good at the restaurant. Win-win-win.

7. Happy late Mother’s Day to all mothers out there, including but not limited to, my own dear mother, my part-time mother (you know who you are), wonderful mother-in-law, and all my friends (real-life and blog) who are mothers to born and pre-born children. And to all those who spiritually mother, because that is a very special motherhood, too.

Hope you all had a lovely weekend!

And A (Late) Happy Thanksgiving To You And You And You

We’re in central NY visiting my dad’s side of the family for a little Thanksgiving vacation. I’m taking advantage of Grace’s nap time to actually do something with this little blog of mine. Also, I lost my voice, so this is the easiest way to express myself. It’s been a little chaotic here, especially since my dad hosts Thanksgiving dinner and we had a lot of food prepping, cleaning, and table arranging to do in order to fit twenty-two of us in the kitchen. Oh, and yesterday morning my brother made my grandmother get a little teary-eyed by shooting his first buck with my late grandfather’s gun, which our dad got his first deer with as well. Awwww. Today we’re just relaxing and recovering. And eating the many, many leftovers from yesterday. I may or may not have had pie for lunch. And a mid-afternoon snack. (It was a fruit pie! It’s healthy, right?!) I’m also doing my best to rest my voice in the hopes that it will return by tomorrow, at least enough to have a conversation. We have plans for another extended family dinner tomorrow night and brunch on Sunday after my cousin’s baby’s baptism, and it’s really hard to talk in a crowded room in a whisper. Other than that (the no voice thing, not the family meals) and a few coughs here and there, we are all having a great time together. I love holidays and celebrating with friends who are family and family who are friends.
I’m playing Christmas music as I type this, and it actually sounds weird. We always wait to begin celebrating the Christmas season until after Thanksgiving, but this year it just crept up on me. It seemed that I was just getting used to the idea that fall is in swing and now Thanksgiving is over and it’s time to prepare for Christmas. I have to try and wrap my brain around that fact, but I’m really excited too. I love this time of year, and I’m excited to make it magical and memorable for my family. The first few days back home will be very busy for us, but it will be fun to pull out the Christmas decorations and to light the Advent candles. Hopefully I can snag a good Advent calendar from somewhere. (any recommendations??) I know Grace is a bit young to really get into the spirit of things, but it will be fun to develop our own family’s traditions. Some little ritual could start this year that will become a favorite Christmas memory for years to come. This is our chance to shape the season into what we’d like it to be. One thing I’m going to do every day is to keep a ‘thankful journal.’ I want to carry over the spirit of Thanksgiving into Advent and take a few minutes out of each day to write down at least three things I’m thankful for, with at least one about Joe. I think it will be a good way to prepare my heart for Christmas and also to take more notice of all the blessings in my life that I tend to take for granted. So today, I’m thankful for good weather, not having any plans on the day my voice is gone, and for Joe’s willingness to do some work on vacation so we could have more time away.
I hope everyone had a lovely holiday that was filled with tasty food, people you love and lots of laughs. Happy Thanksgiving!


So we made a super quick long-weekend trip to Ohio for our university’s homecoming weekend a couple of weeks ago. It was a complete whirlwind, but we loved every minute. My college girlfriends had a reunion that weekend and it was so good to see everyone again, especially since most of us hadn’t seen each other in at least two years. We also got to finally introduce Grace to everyone, especially a couple of “aunties” who send her fun gifts regularly. Joe and Grace got to spend a lot of quality time (though not enough, of course) with his parents who live in the area (I did, too, but not as much as they did). Grace had fun tearing through Grandma and Grandpa’s house. 🙂

I loved every minute of big, long hugs, meeting new friends, catching up with old ones, smiling until my face hurt, staying up too late, the late night run to Kroger for snacks and booze, ahem juice, bringing up all those remember-whens, loving on cute babies, realizing how many of us still had the pizza place’s number in our phones (just in case), laughing until we couldn’t breathe and promising that this time, we’re gonna do a better job at staying in touch.

As I always do, I wish I had taken more pictures. I just rarely pull out the camera because I prefer to be in the moment rather than behind the lens. For those of you who have found the secret of the ability to do both, please share. For now, here’s the few I have. (By the way, I’m still waiting on photo-laden emails to surprise me in my inbox or new albums on Facebook from all of you who did have those cameras out)

As an aside- the giant nasty bruise front the window falling on me is finally almost gone. ha!

haha! oh Kate. I miss this already!

my loves.
beautiful Lauren
I’m so glad you came, Kevin!

my beautiful sisters! I love you all!

Laura: Scythian sends their regards. 😉

4th of July Vacation

We spent the week of the 4th in upstate NY, visiting my dad and his side of the family. It was a long drive, but somehow we made it without getting too irritable with each other.  Luckily, Grace inherited our road warrior genes and tolerated the drive better than we expected.

still smiling on day 2 of the drive!

snacking on her toes

In a surprising twist of fate, Joe’s parents also happened to be visiting Dad while we were there.  It was fun having them there, and Grace got to show off her mad walking skills (read: she took like, 4 steps together) to Grandma and Grandpa.

Grace also surprised us Saturday night when we went to the fireworks display with some friends. I had been a bit apprehensive, hoping against hope that we wouldn’t be that family. You know, the one with the angry, screaming child that refuses to be consoled and makes you have to try and pack up to leave the park in the dark while simultaneously not ruining everyone else’s fireworks experience by blocking their view while wondering why on earth did I wear black sandals and then take them off, since I’ll never find them now? Yeah, that family. Grace was wonderful, and her only complaint of the night was that we wouldn’t let her play with the bottle of DEET-infused bug spray. I figure she’ll get over it.

My family has a thing for themed parties, and this year’s 4th of July bash was no exception. Dad decided on “Blues, Brews, and Barbecues,” and all three were abundant. Never will it be said that someone left a LaBruzzo party hungry. Dad’s greatest fears were realized in the torrential downpour that started as the party did, but luckily it didn’t last long and didn’t stop anyone from having fun. The fireworks were amazing (thanks, Brian!), the annual cousin human pyramid was the highest one yet (I have the bruises to show from the first two failed attempts), and miraculously, there were no injuries from driving/riding the wheeler.

all 11 LaBruzzo cousins

We also hit up the butterfly pavilion, the beach (Grace is not a fan of sand), and just had some good quality family time that makes me realize how much I love NY in the summer. I already can’t wait for next time. 🙂