Reflections on the cost of freedom

Memorial Day

I typically kick off the weekly GRAND Social link party on Mondays. Today is Monday but more importantly it's Memorial Day.

In honor of the holiday, rather than provide the opportunity to share links from grandparent bloggers today, I'd like to express my gratitude and appreciation for those who have given their all in fighting for what's good and right and so very much worth protecting about our nation — and often for the...

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Memorial Day 2016, plus GRAND Social No. 209 link party for grandparents

Memorial Day 2016

In recognition, remembrance, and sincere appreciation of the many brave men and women who courageously gave their all for us and for our great — yes, great! — country.

Thank you to all members of the military, past and present, and their families, too!

GRAND Social No. 209

Thank you for joining this week's...

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Weekend projects

When Jim and I bought our current house nearly five years ago, the oddball place boasted many, um, unique features. One was what the folks we bought it from called an "antique lemonade stand."

A couple weeks ago as I sat in the backyard, with that eyesore lemonade stand in full view, I considered how we might go about tearing it down and putting something cool in its place. Then I came up with a brilliant idea: I would turn that lemonade stand into a food stand for Bubby and Baby Mac to play with when they visit. They got a kick out of the mock restaurant and ice cream stand at the children's museum recently, so I imagined they'd be delighted with a similar plaything at Gramma's.

With that in mind, I purchased some vintage signs, bought a few gallons of paint, hosed down the antique stand, and made its transformation my project for the long Memorial Day weekend.

With help from Brianna, that old antique lemonade stand went from this:

To this:

All spiffed up and ready for me to stock with an OPEN/CLOSED sign, a bell to ding for service, and plastic delights. The food stand will be ready for business by the time Bubby and Baby Mac arrive near the end of June. Plus, I have plenty of paint left over to transform our old outdoor dining set into the perfect spot for food stand customers to enjoy their treats.

I was right in thinking Bubby will love it. When I texted photos of the stand to Megan to share with Bubby, this was her response:

"B said to me (after seeing the pictures), 'I want you to sit down at one of the chairs and after you can come up to the food stand and tell me what you want. And then you can come up to the ice cream place and pick your flavor! I think you want strawberry." :) Nice work, sounds like a busy day!"

She was right, too. It was a busy day, a busy weekend, actually. Not just because of the food stand, though, and not just for me.

Jim had a weekend project of his own—finding the leak in our backyard waterfall. The mysterious leak continually caused the water level to fall and our water bill to rise as we had to fill the feature daily to keep it functioning last summer. Jim's job was a much bigger job than mine, so Brianna and I lent a helping hand with that one, too.

Between the three of us, our backyard waterfall went from this:

To this:

No more leaks!

Two big projects knocked out in one long weekend.

Jim and I agree: We are so glad the long weekend is over so we can finally relax!

Today's fill-in-the-blank:

I'm glad the long weekend is over because ________.