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Hi. I’m sitting here writing on my blog. There is a warm nostalgic feeling that comes along with choosing photos, editing them and sharing them here. It has been a long, long time. And I’m not even sure anyone will even read this. And that’s ok.

But if you happen to read this know that I have missed this and you.

And that I’m not going to make any promises that I’m going to recommit myself to this little corner of the web.

So, what’s new? What are you up to? How is your summer?

Our boy is 2 now.

Wowzer.

Not sure how that one happened.

He loves anything with wheels, yogurt, riding on his dad’s shoulders, the zoo (mainly for the train rides), music-specifically anything with a solid beat and he loves his independence.

He hates anything green, when he doesn’t get his way and having his toenails clipped.

Here we are.

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Photo courtesy of Darrin Ballman

Being a parent has been one of my life’s greatest joys.

Along with the big, big highs of life, there are inevitably the lows.

This year we said goodbye to Brad’s grandma and grandpa.

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I mean… Don’t they just look like fun?

Jennifer and Byers were simply the best.

He was a surgeon in a small town who was known to fry up a squirrel as a delicacy, and he wore a bow tie religiously.

Jennifer was 25 years his junior, and they met at the hospital where they both worked. She was an encourager, a quilter and the consistent bright spot in any room.

Saying goodbye was sad, but somehow lovely too.

Everyone that attended Byers’ funeral donned his signature look.

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Side note: My sister-in-law travelled to the funeral to watch the kiddos so that we could attend the service uninterrupted. She saw me before she saw anyone else, and she thought that my bow tie was a new trend that she hadn’t heard about.

So, I’m thinking about starting that trend on up.

Moving on to happier topics.

We’ve hung with cousins.

These mischief-makers love each other’s company.

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And I’m nervous for the trouble these guys will make together in a few more years.

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We’ve spent time with my family too- glorious long days at the pool with serenades at night.

Henry gets his large dome from his Papa. Sorry Dad, but it’s true.

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Far more important than spending time with family, I spent some time with some 90s icons.

Yes, folks. Perhaps the best concert of my life. Boyz II Men, 98 Degrees and my personal favorite- New Kids on the Block.

I loved Jon when I was growing up and I was in the screeching height of fandom. He was my jam. I remember vividly being at my best friend, Erin’s, birthday slumber party sitting 2 inches from the TV screaming our pre-teen heads off at NKOTB. I may have shed a tear.

And now, after seeing them together again, a little spark of love was rekindled.

And here is the funny thing… all these years later, Jon is still totally the one.

Although my pre-teen Jon make-out fantasies are less important- not that he would be in to that sort of thing anyhow.

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Here are we are pre-sweat fest concert. My friends and fellow NKOTB lovas.

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Let’s catch up on our yard, shall we?

First, we have a small-ish flat roof that was in desperate need of replacing.

So, we did.

And we upgraded.

Introducing the Wise Bistro.

It is Brad and my favorite place to hang out, sip wine, chat, snooze, read books, and so on.

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And from our roof, we can look out back and spy treasures.

Like this mama deer with 4 (!) babies. I die.

These little babies were all wobbly on their feet and the mama spent most of the day snoozing. I think we got to watch them when they were only hours old.

My friend and neighbor, Stephanie, and I were very concerned about this mama. And we wanted to help.

So, Steph whipped a crate of strawberries over the fence to make dining a little easier on Mama Deer.

I’m not sure if she ate them or not, but I’m not going to lie… the strawberry toss helped me sleep at night.

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Speaking of neighbors, this is Henry’s best friend. She happens to be the strawberry thrower’s daughter.

They spend far too much time (according to them) separated by a fence.

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When they manage to finagle their way into the other’s yard or house, they are just impossibly cute.

Until the “mine” game starts. Then they are cute, but in desperate need of a referee.

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So, that about covers it. You’re caught up.

And in case you are wondering, we’ve been eating well. I still cook a bunch, and maybe I’ll even throw some food on here some day (maybe even before another 6 months passes).

We’ve eaten this kind of goodness…

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Dutch’s

And we’ve eaten in places that store their wine like this…

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Sotto

And we’ve dined with the loveliest of folks like them…

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And we’ve tasted wine after tacos- with a chat on the deck post consumption…

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Bakersfield,1215 Wine Bar

I’ll end on this note.

I had the best macaroons of my life as a birthday gift.

If anyone is looking for ideas of what to get me, you should get me these.

For anything.

Always.

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Pistacia Vera

That is all for now.

If you happened to stumble here, I’m so glad you did.

Sorry for my ramblings and my long absence.

xo,

Leah

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