Tag Archives: Cats

Colorful Odds And Ends ๐ŸŒˆ๐Ÿงต

When I went shopping with family yesterday, I got a few things which I posted on my latest Jurassic Stuff post. I left these odds-and-ends for a separate post since they are random and not Jurassic World related. To start with, for just about $2.00 I got these scrapbooking pages! ๐ŸŒˆโœจโœ‚๏ธ๐Ÿ“”

This pair of ceramic snails cost me just $1.50. A nice addition to the snail decor surrounding my tank! ๐ŸŒˆ๐ŸŒ

Found some really neat dinosaur fabric too! I canโ€™t wait to do stuff with it! ๐ŸŒˆ๐Ÿงต

Hereโ€™s a close-up of the fabric! ๐Ÿฆ–๐Ÿฆ•

It’s so pretty and colorful. I’ll have to make a bandana for myself if any of the pieces are big enough, or maybe a pocket cover on one of my overalls.

Just Jurassic Stuff! ๐Ÿฆ–๐Ÿฆ•๐ŸŒฟ

Hereโ€™s one more Jurassic World magazine I found while grocery shopping! Now that Iโ€™ve watched Dominion, I can enjoy truly delving into the magazines Iโ€™ve gathered. They are full of interesting tidbits!

I also found this Jurassic World Create-A-Scene book while out with my mom in law. Itโ€™s scrapbooking gold! โœจ

It has more cartoony stickers which I prefer, and scenes to place them in. But of course I will use the scenes for scrapbooking.

Today we went out for Pho and then we all did some shopping together. Look what I found! A Jurassic Park patch for my overalls! ๐Ÿฆ–

Hereโ€™s a close-up, since Rosie was the highlight of the prior picture, reallyโ€ฆ

I canโ€™t wait to play this with Christopher. Very nice addition to our โ€œcouplesโ€ board game collection:

Finally, here’s what came in my three little Captivz slime eggs. I still have the big one to open. I’ve had these for a while, but been too busy to sit down and enjoy opening the eggs until this weekend.

The figures are of really excellent quality. Wonderful paint jobs!

Visiting Mom + New Snails! ๐ŸŒ๐Ÿฅฌ

Yesterday I went on a little snail hunt as part of my daily exercise! ๐ŸŒ๐ŸŒˆ It was rainy and perfect snail catching weather. โ˜”๏ธ๐Ÿ’ง๐Ÿ’ง๐Ÿ’ง During my walk I spotted some BIG mushrooms! ๐Ÿ„

I ended up adding 18 new snabies to my rout! ๐Ÿ˜ Of course this is only their isolation tank. After deworming and monitoring for parasites, they will join the group in my 20 gallon tank. ๐ŸŒ๐Ÿฅฌ

After that, Christopher took me to my momโ€™s! We had mimosas and played Kerplunk.

This was the Jurassic World Dominion version!

I brought Orion along with me. They watched us play! ๐Ÿงธ๐Ÿ‘ฝ๐ŸŒˆ

I always ask my mom for the same dinnerโ€ฆ always involves fried potatoes made from scratch! ๐ŸŸ๐ŸŒˆ We watched the first Jurassic World movie while we had dinner.

Last night I played a lot with the cats, especially with grumpy olโ€™ Sweeney. He seemed so happy in spite of still being grouchy and bitey. This morning they both perked up and began to follow me around as soon as I came out of the bedroom! ๐Ÿฑ๐Ÿ’•

Sweeney kept talking at me and cocking his head in the cutest waysโ€ฆ ๐Ÿฅบ

Now Iโ€™m sitting here with Orion, working on a commission and ready to watch Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom! Then Iโ€™ll be all ready for tomorrowโ€ฆ Iโ€™m so, so excited, I just canโ€™t wait!

I have to say I utterly love this bear. For sure they’ve become one of my top favorites. So, so glad I didn’t miss out when they released them!

Anyway tomorrow is the big day. Jurassic World Dominion day. To say I am excited out of my mind would be an understatement! We have tickets at 7:00pm, CinรฉBistro! I am counting down the hours!

Memorial Day Weekend In Sebastian ๐Ÿ›ถ๐ŸŒˆ

Happy Sunday, everyone! We’re back from our Memorial Day weekend trip to see Christopher’s mom and grandma. We went kayaking, it was a lot of fun! I was very cranky for some reason, for SO much of the time, which made me feel like a real drag, because everyone (especially my partners) was really trying to make me happy. But I really did have a great time overall. I just seemed to get suddenly irate, easily, for silly reasons –such as not being able to get the kayak I wanted (eventually I did, anyway). I need to learn to just roll with things better.

Then again, Christopher was on the kayak I was going to be stuck using, and he fell into the water, so… ๐Ÿคทโ€โ™€๏ธ I admit he laughed it off MUCH better than I would have!

๐ŸŒˆ Friday ๐ŸŒˆ

We were off around 3:30pm. I brought E.T. on this particular trip! He was looking spiffy:

As soon as we got there, we had nachos for dinner. I got to open my new Mandalorian Good2Grow Podz!

The nachos were great as always. We went to bed earlier than usual, because of a very early rise to go kayaking the next day.

๐Ÿ›ถ Saturday ๐Ÿ›ถ

By 7:30am we were off. First a MdDonald’s stop, and then to the water! It was my first time in a kayak all by myself (last time I was in a tandem with our partner) and my second time kayaking at all. It was mostly mangroves, and a lot of fun again!

I wish I’d been able to get more photos. My mom in law got a lot of Go-Pro footage, though.

Sorry for the next (bad) photo –andโ€ฆ sorry for the photo in the first place– ๐Ÿ˜† but our partner found a water snail on my butt when I got off the kayak, somehow completely unharmed! It was so cool to see a water snail up close. Their bodies are very different!

After a nice lunch of a sandwich and juice I had coffee and read some more of The Last Days of the Dinosaurs, which continues to enthrall me. I even got to have some sugar cookies my mom-in-law had here, including a Crayola inspired one!

After that, everyone indulged me in watching the first episode of Prehistoric Planet with me, and even on that first episode I was in tears at times. What an absolute delight. I canโ€™t wait to watch the rest!

Later I had a little nap on the couch with E.T. Our partner took this photo of me while I slept.

We spent the afternoon watching TV, chatting, cuddling, drinking coffee and enjoying the sound of heavy rain outside. In the evening, we all went out for a really nice hibachi dinner at Makoto’sโ€ฆ it was a wonderful end to a tiring, happy Saturday.

๐ŸŒป Sunday ๐ŸŒป

Today was our last day! We had cinnamon rolls and bacon in the morning. I took this photo of Sissy sunning herself on the super-hot grill (heated by the Florida sun, I mean):

After breakfast, our partner and I took my mom in law’s doggie for a walk around the block, and then we just chilled until lunchtime. After lunch, it was time to go home. I got a little Patreon work done on the way back. ๐Ÿš—๐ŸŒˆโœจ

After we were unpacked, we did a Target run to replace our dying, frequently used Keurig. I grabbed a couple of silly things:

And that was that! It was a happy, tiring weekend, some misadventures, but with laughs, some drama (mostly prompted by me) but still, we are happy. In two weeks my mom in law comes to see us for her birthday. I can’t wait!

Elliot’s Petting Session ๐Ÿ’•๐Ÿฑ

Elliot has such a thick undercoat. We brush and brush but it never finishes coming off, even with a Furminator. He LOVES when our partner digs his fingers in his fur and gets all the old hair out.

He may not look it, but heโ€™s in heaven, as was evidenced after this video was taken by the copious amount of drool in our partnerโ€™s arms:

Elliot drools a LOT when heโ€™s very happy. Actually he drools even if heโ€™s mildly pleased. Heโ€™s also easy to please… as a consequence, he drools often.

Shark Valley Misadventure! ๐ŸŠ๐Ÿข๐ŸŒˆ

Hi hi, everyone! This was a pretty good week –and with this post my blog will be finally caught all up! It was certainly eventful, and I’ll go into the mishap that occurred on Saturday which I mentioned on Twitter –so, let’s get right to it!

๐ŸŒˆ Monday ๐ŸŒˆ

Monday we had tickets for Studio Ghibli Fest 2022, which begins with Ponyo. I really like that movie, but if I’m honest I was most excited to get to to take a photo with the Jurassic World Dominion display!!

Literally my entire outfit (shirt, backpack, the blanket I brought to keep warm) and my coordinating colors were Jurassicโ€ฆ can you tell Iโ€™m hyped? Haha…

๐ŸŒˆ Wednesday ๐ŸŒˆ

Just odds and ends from Wednesday, starting with a lounging Rosie…

Sometimes I find that our partner has been screwing around with my dinosaurs. I found Bumpy on my Brachiosaurus’ head:

My big Ankylosaurus was trying to rescue his friend…

On my recent Target outing I came across a little Jurassic World lamp in their cheapy toys section! ๐Ÿ˜

๐ŸŒˆ Saturday ๐ŸŒˆ

And now… oh boy. Now to Saturday’s events. We’d been talking about heading to Shark Valley for a while, especially since I’ve never been in the Everglades proper, and I wanted to see gators so badly. So I was pretty excited to go, as it was put to me “for a couple of hours”, even if it was at the hottest time of the day, in an area with NO TREES. At least not for most of the way. I can handle this, I thought. And in truth, that much I could handle.

Let me start by saying that our partner insisted I leave Jello behind and instead bring water. I wasn’t worried –I had my hat, it was only for a couple of hours, I wanted to carry Jello for pictures. Anyway, he brought water, I brought Jello. That was my first stupid decision –though again, I’d been a bit bamboozled. Stay with me here.

We could rent bikes, he says. I’m picky with bikes, so I demur. This is my second stupid decision, one on which I changed my mind less than a mile into our walk, after I was informed that we are, in fact, going to walk FOURTEEN miles, at noon, with a stop in the middle that has shade and water. What?!

But at this point, he doesn’t want to go back to get bikes, and this would be one of his stupid decisions. Another of mine was not being more insistent. But he promises me a National Park passport as a treat from the gift shop, which closes at six, and I’m a sucker for a treat in exchange for being a good girl, so common sense is promptly thrown out the window.

We press on, as I am not yet in too much pain, and way too distracted by turtles, birds, SO many gators of varying sizes…

…and flowers…

…and insects:

We get to see a gator hunt something (a turtle, a fish?) doing the typical gator roll, mere feet from us. A huge thrill! I also get close enough to a softshell turtle to touch it (of course, I don’t). It was massive, the size of a small dog. We were very entertained.

As we continue walking on an asphalt path with no shade and under blazing sun, I bitch and moan that I know my limits: I cannot walk more than, max, six miles at noon with no water, in Florida, in the Everglades, in the summer. But he insists, and hey! I’m a people pleaser. I bitch and moan and cry, but ultimately I’m a people pleaser, just a very whiny one.

By mile marker six, with the observatory shimmering in the distance like a mirage, my moaning and whining has turned to tears and mild occasional hyperventilating. The gators are no longer of interest. After some coaxing, I’ve drank all of our partner’s water, told that at our rest stop we can both have more. Jello has become a bit of a drag to carry.

We make it to the observatory only to be met with large “BOIL WATER NOTICE” signs. We are in disbelief, but no matter: there is a tour tram, we can see one in the distance. Surely if we explain the situation they will take us back. Walking back seven miles with no water at high afternoon in Florida, in summer, in the Everglades, is very literally dangerous, especially since we are already dehydrated.

We wait for the tram and I take a few photos of the observatory view, which was indeed breathtaking:

Even from this height you can spot multiple large gators in the water.

We come down as the tram approaches, and upon explaining the situation, we are told that it is a paid tour. They do not care about our problems. Our partner asks if they have water, we cannot continue without drinking water, which we were explicitly told was available here. The tour lady tells us they do, for a dollar each. We have no cash.

It is baffling that to us park employees would behave in this manner with people in a bind, especially since we paid a whopping $30 just to enter and walk. But anyway –very reluctantly she gives us two small bottles, and when a tram passenger offers to pay for us, she definitely takes the money. ๐Ÿ™„

So it is time to walk back. And now I really start to cry and I cry for a while, quietly, because I seriously don’t think I can do this. My feet and legs are killing me, my eyes sting with sweat, did I mention we had no sunscreen? I know, real winners. I have one tiny bottle of water that I have to make last for seven more miles, which is one more than our partner had, because I drank his on the way there.

For a while I cry, on and off, having random fits when a wasp or fly gets too close to my head. It is misery. Eventually I am doing too poorly to bitch, moan or cry, a signal our partner smartly takes to feel concerned for my welfare (if I go quiet, you know shit’s serious, because I never shut up) but there is nothing he can do. He was dumb to suggest our situation and I was equally dumb to go for it. We are two dumbasses, and all we can do is walk. And so we do.

The tram passes us, with at least a couple of empty seats. It is the last tram of the day. When it disappears from view, my crying, which had subsided, starts again. Further dehydration, and my water is gone. I no longer care about the promised National Parks passport. I no longer care about the gators, or our partner’s jokes, or even not having water. Everything has stopped mattering.

He decides to play Shrek on his phone, and so we walk for two hours listening to the entirety of Shrek in a strange sort of fever dream.

I text Christopher a few times, updating him on our ordeal. Please don’t die, he says. I tell him I’ll try not to.

At one point I send him this photo, when I couldn’t walk anymore, and our partner massaged my feet for a while:

So many times both of us stared at our smartwatches, counting miles, checking heart rates. Mine, never above 135 even when jogging for three miles straight, eventually reaches 150 and more or less stays there.

Strangely, near the end of the fourteen miles, I began to recover, while our partner was crashing. Nauseous at times, not really able to say much by the end. We made it to the car with just fifteen minutes to spare before being actually locked IN the park for the night (!!) The gift shop had closed –there went my reward! Ultimately I was promised I could have any toy as a treat, which really made up for it.

But to tell you the truth, something else happened as soon as we began to recover, and I mean even as we were driving home. We began to bask in the glory of our accomplishment. It was sort of exhilarating. We did something stupid, surely, that should not be repeated. Water is a requirement, so are hats (he didn’t have one) clothes that don’t chafe, and sunscreen.

But we also walked fourteen miles in five hours, a record for both of us. It sucked, but we didn’t feel as bad physically as we thought we would. And we ACTUALLY did it.

We also knew it was our max: another mile, perhaps another half mile, and I think we would have called emergency services. It really was that bad, you have to understand, it’s the heat. 90 degree weather, perhaps higher, with very high humidity. But that didn’t happen, thankfully.

By the next morning, I’d basically recovered (it took him about another day). But I was ready to walk again, and felt (and still feel) a strange, inexplicable urge to further punish my body in this manner. I’m not sure what to call this. I was miserable. Why do I crave this? Maybe I felt more alive than usual. I don’t know.

I do know we will not do something stupid like that again. But push ourselves like that, and further, in a smart and safe way? For sure. I said I couldn’t walk fourteen miles in the hot Florida sun, at noon and afternoon, in the Everglades, with little water, with no sunscreen. And I did it –we did it.

Who knows what else we can do? I really want to find that out.

Mother’s Day Week ๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ‘ง๐Ÿ’

It’s Sunday again! And this weekend is Mother’s Day. So Happy Mother’s Day to our moms and to any moms reading this. ๐Ÿ˜Š We all took my mom, Christopher’s mom and Grandma to Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden to celebrate. And I also visited my mom during the week. Anyway, let’s get on with the weekly recap!

๐ŸŒˆ Monday ๐ŸŒˆ

This stuff is from last week but I didn’t have a chance to take pictures until now. Some Jurassic World finds. First, a puzzle in an egg! I haven’t “hatched” it yet. ๐Ÿ˜

And a really nice coloring book, of the same sort as the Turning Red one:

This one actually was from today. We went to Sam’s Club and I found the most amazing Mandalorian activity book:

The pages are THICK. It has lots of activities, some with actual cardstock. I can’t recommend this enough! It will make for lots of scrapbooking fun.

๐ŸŒˆ Tuesday ๐ŸŒˆ

Tuesday I went to my mom’s. All I have from this day is this photo of Sweeney:

๐ŸŒˆ Wednesday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Wednesday my mom’s gas station was closed down because they were recording a Ferrari commercial. We were allowed a sneak peek!

And have more photos of Sweeney, because why not…

In the evening I finally beat Pokรฉmon Sword, so that was nice.

๐ŸŒˆ Thursday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Thursday we got news of a fire near my beloved Marham Park. There was a storm the night before, and lighting hit somewhere. The fire was very big and we still don’t know if it was just the Everglades or the park itself affected. I hope it wasn’t the park. ๐Ÿ˜ž

A new scratcher I ordered for the kitties came in on this day. Rosie took to it immediately:

For lunch we ordered aรงaรญย bowls from Raw Addiction, but they were much smaller than usual which was a bummer.

Anyway, my feeder is getting continuous visitors. They do make a mess, but I love them all the same.

๐ŸŒˆ Friday ๐ŸŒˆ

Friday morning I went out for a long walk, and also to Target. I didn’t buy anything but these Jurassic Park Funko backpacks were really neat to see:

For lunch I had avocado toast and opened another Good2Grow Podz:

Got a trike this time! Really cute.

๐ŸŒˆ Saturday ๐ŸŒˆ

This was the day we took our Moms and Grandma out! We were off early, first to pick up my mom and then to grab breakfast.

It is rare that my mom joins us on an outing like this one, and our partner was with us too, so these photos are really precious to me. I wish my sis in law had been with us too, then I could say all of the people I love most in the world were with me. All the photos below are of me and my family.

When I went a few weeks ago with our partner, none of the LEGO stuff was on display tet. But this time it was, and that made this visit a particular treat!

The slightly maddening thing is that the upcoming LEGO statue to be unveiled is a realistic snail on a mushroom… and I missed it! Sigh. ๐Ÿ˜ž

Anyway –critters! The photo set below is all critters. My favorite is the lounging squirrel at the start!

And here are all the other photos… flowers, plants and such, things that didn’t fit in the above sets:

I got a bit worried because my mom seemed close to heat stroke by the end. But ultimately we made it to a restaurant and then she felt better. After that, we took her home. Then the rest of us relaxed back at our place.

๐ŸŒˆ Sunday ๐ŸŒˆ

Breakfast this morning was SO wonderful! Christopher made me a fancy pancake again and my mom in law burned the bacon just the way she knows I like it. Not extra crispy. Burnt! It’s always a delight.

I got an even cuter photo from my squirrel feeder today!

And that’s all… family is now gone back to Sebastian so it’s time to get to work again and continue catching up on my backlog of, well… everything!

Back To Normal ๐ŸŒž

Happy Sunday, everyone! Time for yet another week’s recap. All of this week I felt very overwhelmed. There is so much to do… I don’t know how I can ever catch up… but I guess eventually I’ll manage it. Anyway, let’s get to what happened this week!

๐ŸŒˆ Monday ๐ŸŒˆ

Monday was Mwako’s last day with us. We went out to breakfast and shopping one final time, and then he was off to the airport.

At Publix he sneakily got this Jurassic World Dominion shopping bag that he surprised me with before leaving… I love it!

We did one final Target stop, where I finally caved and got the Ankylosaurus that I’d picked up and put back on the shelf three times prior. At home, he quickly made friends with Bumpy!

Also at Target, I found this awesome coloring book of Turning Red. It has wonderful illustrations and activities –stickers, too!

I also got another Highlights Hidden Pictures book. I love these so much. The old-timey pen and ink illustrations give me life!

The last lovely find was this little gliding Bowser Jr.! Isn’t he adorable?

For dinner we had salmon. And that was that for Monday. I don’t have anything to share until Thursday because I was just so busy.

๐ŸŒˆ Thursday ๐ŸŒˆ

For Thursday I have a few odds-and-ends. Firstly, I installed the bird feeder that my mom in law gave to me, and added a cob of corn for good measure:

Also –this is older, but I only photographed it today. It’s a very gently used The Lost World: Jurassic Park baby triceratops figure by Kenner:

Brand new, this can go well over a hundred dollars. She came out of the box and with no egg, but she was only $25… so I am happy.

Also, I hung my little Bowser Jr. from the studio ceiling so he looks like he’s gliding!

Today our partner and I released some ladybugs to fight the aphids in our brand new almond bush. The ladybugs were exposed to the heat for too long on the way to us, but most of them revived and immediately went to work:

Later in the afternoon, at the insistence of friends, I took a break to play some Pokรฉmon Sword and have a snack:

I drank another of my Good2Grow Podz, this one is a baby T. rex, so cute!

๐ŸŒˆ Saturday ๐ŸŒˆ

Saturday was stressful. Kotoko has been vomiting, sometimes a little pink (meaning there was blood, at least once). We’ve been in constant contact with our vet, and finally at her advice we brought her in. Kotoko was a very good girl, as always.

Multiple tests were done and we will see what the results say, for now we have special foods and nausea meds. Hopefully it is nothing serious.

In the evening, the three of us went out to dinner. We ate at El Balcรณn De Las Americas. It was a good place, we will go there again. Since we were a bilingual table, our very nice waiter gave us a bilingual dessert:

Later that night I decided to dress Grover up in pajamas, since all he ever does is sleep with me anyway:

๐ŸŒˆ Sunday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Sunday I went on a little date with our partner while Christopher rested and enjoyed some solitude. He couldn’t get us out the door fast enough, but I think he would have enjoyed this place were it not for the heat. We went to the Yellow Green Farmers Market. The best thing was the smells –like fair food stalls on steroids! We had carne a la vara, with arepas. It was awesome.

The people at this stall could use some help spelling, but it was pretty hilarious:

A lot of people bring their dogs here. This pupper was at a stall that sold… either carved wood items of some sort, or candles, or both. I forget.

He or she was in fact a good guard dog, but only as far as other puppers were concerned. I could get this close without any sort of reaction! If any dogs got anywhere in sight though (even far off!) this pupper would perk up and bark fiercely… without ever leaving his or her little perch. ๐Ÿ˜

Anyway, that was a lovely time. I’m really treasuring the memories made. ๐Ÿ’•

Mwako’s Here! ๐Ÿฆ๐ŸŒˆ

Hello, everyone! First of all, I want to apologize for my absence/commission delay which I hinted at but did not fully explain. Being sick three times (never COVID but always sucky) having a weekend-long Easter visit with family, an almost week-long visit of my dear friend Mwako during which time I did not work at all, dealing with important travel paperwork AND having my period on top of it all, meant that no commission work got done whatsoever.

I am now back at the tablet and getting things done, so you all will be getting your WIPS and/or finished pieces over the next few days. But before that –here’s this week’s summary!

๐ŸŒˆ Monday ๐ŸŒˆ

Monday was a special day. It was the Jurassic World Dominion street date for the new toys! Christopher and I made a deal: I could spend up to $200, and anything I purchased would be set aside for my birthday and Christmas. This suited me fine! I went to Target and Walmart and came back with a cart full of things. ๐Ÿ˜ Although, the new displays were not out at Target, a very nice employee got me everything I wanted from the back.

I also passed by Five Below on the way back and scored a few nice Super Mario finds!

A Super Mario Easter egg and Mario Kart UNO cards! The UNO cards I plan to use for scrapbooking. I loved that the puzzle below had Bowser Jr. in it!

It was otherwise a quiet, busy day, prepping the house, doing chores, and drawing.

๐ŸŒˆ Tuesday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Tuesday, it was more and more prepping. I had a lot to do. But I did take some time to myself in the morning, walked to the mall, had a snack there, and bought some pins to decorate my new Galactic Pal bags:

๐ŸŒˆ Wednesday ๐ŸŒˆ

Wednesday I was up at 5:00am to finish prepping the playroom. It took more work than you imagine, simple though it looks (lots of lugging stuff downstairs, plus putting the mat together, moving furniture, building the tent –tricky on my own) but I think the end result turned out really nice!

The couch looked cozy…

Stuff for outdoor play!

Ricky Parky had not been down to play in quite some time!

Tomoyo was really interested in all the toys…

At least she couldn’t bite this. She definitely tried to bite other things.

I used my travel pillow as a chair for Cookie:

Everywhere you looked it was colorful and full of toys and things to do, games to play, books to color…

Out of the Jurassic World Dominion release, there were a couple of cheaper dinos that I bought for myself so I wouldnโ€™t have to wait to play with them, such as this cute Imaginext gal. Sheโ€™s really expressive! You can move her up and down and side to side by the tail, open and close her mouth, and change her facial expression! Her arms move too!

Coloring books and games…

I love this Jurassic World version of TOMY’s classic Pirate Pop-Up game!

My new T. rex friend was looking for trouble…

Here’s Ricky all ready to โ€œpretendโ€ camp indoors!

Bluey was ready to welcome Mwako, too!

Crayons!! ๐ŸŒˆโœจ

More friends and fun things to do! ๐ŸŒˆ๐ŸŒŸ๐Ÿš‚ Socks was a little surprise gift for Mwako.

On Mwako’s first night with us, we went to Blue Ginger, a fancy sushi restaurant where the food is served in little floating boats. It was wonderful, I was so happy we got to go because it’s one of Christopher’s favorite places that we can so rarely afford, and Mwako treated us all.

๐ŸŒˆ Thursday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Thursday we took Mwako to my (currently) favorite park, Marhham Park. I picked a very colorful outfit, and brought Cookie along on her first outing:

First we did a quick Starbucks run for breakfast at the house.

Cookie tried her first cake pop!

Once at the park it was time to explore. I love this place, with its pine-needle covered floors. It looks kind of otherwordly in places. The more I explore Florida the more I find beauty I didn’t know it had.

Here’s a couple of pics I got of me and Mwako:

It was overall a super nice time. I did at one point get chased by a few bees and really panicked and ran for a long, long stretch, leaving Mwako and my partner well, WELL behind. Later they told me that as I did that, they heard what had to have been a gator jumping into the water, mere feet from us. They said it definitely sounded like something bigger than a grown man.

What makes that a bit scary is that on recent Googling I found out a woman was attacked by a gator during a jog at this same park. It wouldn’t surprise me if it was that same area. ๐Ÿ˜ฌ I guess it’s a good thing that I was running!

Anyway, I’ve been doing stops at Walmart/Target/Dollar Tree/etc, and here are some finds. First, a couple of Uncaged Wild Pop-Ups:

A couple of super cute cups from the dollar store, Berenstain Bears and Arthur-themed:

And some Jurassic Wold stickers:

๐ŸŒˆ Friday ๐ŸŒˆ

On Friday, we went to Butterfly World. This is truly the perfect time of the year to go! The amount of butterflies was off the chart, like stepping into a fairy tale world.

First, here’s an all-butterfly set of photos. They were just so pretty.

A cute caterpillar friend!

The birds here are very tame and friendly:

This one was taking a little bath:

This one was… feeling territorial?

I didn’t know canaries ate lettuce, did you?

This little guy was tucking in for a nap. ๐Ÿ˜Š

In the museum and insect area, the moths were my favorite, but everything was beautiful and interesting:

Here’s a wriggly mealworm. These guys are small, but they can bite! If they didn’t I might want to have them as pets.

We bought a couple of plants before leaving. An almond bush which was part of the reason behind the trip, and a mimosa plant as a gift for our dear Christopher. ๐Ÿฅฐ After Butterfly World, we went back to the house to play some games in the playroom I’d set up.

We played the T. rex pop-up game first. It was lots of fun! I jumped every time. ๐Ÿ˜…

Then we played Yeti In My Spaghetti for a while, before it was time to set the table for our burger dinner.

I had special fancy dino paper plates for the occasion! I had to get another one though because someone spilled his drink all over me and my T. rex… ๐Ÿ˜‘

๐ŸŒˆ Saturday ๐ŸŒˆ

Let’s start this day with a photo of Tomoyo, laying elegantly as she does:

Mwako continued to humor me by driving me to Targets so I could look for more Jurassic World Dominion stuff. So in the morning we were off, first breakfast at Starbucks and then to Target.

I was very excited at this particular Target because it was my first time finally seeing a Dominion display!

Some neat things I saw (but didn’t buy) were this Pokรฉmonย themed Labyrinth game by Ravensburger and this Jeep Wrangler R/C car, Jurassic World themed. I was really tempted by the car… ๐Ÿ˜…

Ultimately, I came home with this super cute Elmo backpack and Jurassic World Dominion set of minis, both of which Mwako was kind enough to treat me to:

Once home, it was time to move on to some backyard fun! Well… back porch fun. We blew some bubbles, for starters, but I don’t have photos of that. It was fun, though. Ricky sat and watched, it had been a while since he came out to play, as I mentioned:

New T. rex was excited to get into the chalk so we quickly moved on to that.

Playing with chalk was so much fun. I never got to do this as a kid, believe it or not. Chalk was something we only had at school, and colored chalk? What is that, anyway? So, silly though it may seem, this made me really happy.

Ricky Parky had a blast too!

The cats were very curious about the chalk, smelling it, rolling in it, and just being generally very interested and wanting to be involved in our playtime.

Rosie was arguably the most interested of all:

I tried drawing Mwako, a snail and a subrosian for Christopher (that one ended up being my favorite):

I also drew one of our house “soots”:

Mwako did a pretty spiffy job of drawing Stitch!

After that it started to sprinkle, so we went back inside to continue our fun.

A pause for more Tomoyo, this time giving me a half-hearted but playful air-swat:

Time to play some more! First some Jenga…

We each had a cute snack. Since today was special, I picked one of my Good2Grow Podz. Grogu is so cute!

I had my veggie chips in my Bluey bowl, not that you can tell…

The movie for the evening was Brother Bear, an old favorite. It’d been a while since I last saw it. We colored with crayons while watching and just had a nice time.

After the movie, Mwako, my partners and I all went to mini golf. That was a lot of fun to do late in the evening! They closed just as we left.

๐ŸŒˆ Sunday ๐ŸŒˆ

Today, Sunday, was the last day with activities, since Mwako is leaving tomorrow.

I opened my minis in the morning while having some quiet time to myself. They are so cute!

Look at that adorable tiny carnie, a perfect little chonk:

Being time for another outing, I got dressed up, new backpack and all:

I picked Dusty to accompany me today:

We took Mwako to Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park today. This was a lovely setting to take photos of Dusty in, just like Marham Park with Cookie:

Here are some random pics without Dusty in them. Of course I still have to add stickers.

Here’s Mwako looking super cute in the outfit I picked for him to wear. Pink looks great on him, I think!

Our time at the park was fun but exhausting because it was so hot. Once we got back home and freshened up, we sat down to have some “kiddy time” again. First we laid down the Richard Scarry’s Busytown Eye Found It! board game:

It’s a high quality game, with a massive board and very cute pieces:

It’s a collaborative game, either all players win, or the “pigs” win. We enjoyed it, and it certainly has lots of replayability.

At some point, I don’t remember when, I ate this cute chocolate Easter sheep:

After the board game, we played with blocks. It may seem silly, but don’t knock it til you try it. With LEGO, you still have to “think”. There’s something incredibly relaxing about playing with big-ass blocks. Once you let go, all your adult worries melt away, if only for a little bit.

I “play” in a bit more of a conventional manner, making “houses” for my Thomas The Tank Engine Mega Blok figures:

In you go:

Incidentally, I was wearing my bear kigu. It really helps put me in a certain kind of mood when I play with toys such as these. ๐Ÿป

Mwako, for his part, is far more chaotic, creating some impressive (and sometimes slightly frightening) creatures:

This here has to be one of my favorite photos of this visit…

HE COMIN’

We drank as we played and ended our evening in the little tent, just laughing and kinda pouring our hearts out to each other in a tipsy haze. This ended up being the most memorable portion of the week for me. It was such a lovely end to the visit, and left me feeling much closer to my beloved friend of now quite a few years, and looking forward to another visit later this year.

I know this was a very long post. If you read it all, I’m so grateful! Hope it was enjoyable. ๐Ÿ˜Š