Full Plate!

Do you know what this is?

You got it – a FULL PLATE of SWEETS!  A full plate of cannoli, that is – whipped up by my recently engaged daughter for a recent Premier Jewelry party with an Italian theme hosted in our home recently.

Just another little something on a calendar this summer that has had barely a space on which to jot down another thing to do!

Where, oh where, has the summer gone?  A FULL PLATE, indeed!!  I had such plans for posts and tea settings and  whimsy stories and inspirational whatnots and garden journals  . . .

Devotional ruminations and thrift store brag-abouts and vintage finds to share . . .

OH!  But, life happens and routines impose their time-clocks and one week turns to another and how very remiss I have been visiting all and sundry in Blogland this past month!

Yes, in my last post I noted that my beautiful daughter will be a beautiful bride before the year is out.

Tonight we have an appointment at a bridal salon to get our first look at gowns.  Guests lists have been a great topic of discussion this past week, as has a possible venue.  The months ahead look to be full of such preparations – and I want to squeeze every ounce of joy from the melee!!

Speaking of melee – in the midst of my own melee of homeschool class preparations for September and our monthly parent workshops and field trips with my 2012 venture as director of Constellation Academy Home School Resources Network – I am also planning a visit to my son, daughter-in-law and grandbaby, Mackenze, in Massachusetts the end of this month!  She’s turning two, you know . . .

So, in the interest of doing something with all the photos I’ve snapped with good blog intentions, in a nutshell – here is a July recap of my recent doings that have eaten up my computer time:

Vineland Seafood Festival

Our hometown Main Street group sponsors a number of events in our historic Landis Avenue downtown, including our July Seafood Festival.

Why go to the beach when we bring the beach to YOU!

Tons of sand that are kept at Public Works for spraying on the streets each year during snow storms is moved for the day and dumped in the middle of the Avenue right in front of the stage where children of all ages build sand castles and toss beach balls to the tunes of some great classic rock cover bands with a zydeco swing and folk feel that are crowd pleasers.

No downtown band event would be complete without Mr. and Mrs. Arsenault who have been dancing together since their courting youth in 1961.  Mr. Arsenault taught history at our local college campus for decades and enjoys retirement with his wife and summers in Vineland.

They have quite the moves and are a delight to all onlookers.

The problem with this festival, though, is trying to decide WHAT to eat!  So many delish dishes to choose from with sixteen food vendors this year!

Ed and I opted for a stay at Gilligan’s Island, though.

Yep – our good friends at Larry’s II Restaurant, a place we often visit, dreamed up a great idea in keeping with the seafood theme:  Gilligan’s Island!

They were all there – Gillian, the Skipper, too . . .

The millionaire and his wife . . .

The movie star, the professor and MaryAnn . . .

All making things move to serve visitors to the “island” the most excellent of meals!

Just look at the yumminess on their menu! 

PLUS – Key Lime Pie Smoothies!!

Ed and I went back for seconds, to be sure!!

Come September, it’s the Chili and Ribs Cook-off!  Same basic set-up with bands and vendors – but no sand.  I’ll report on that event, to be sure!!

Summer Reading at the Libraries

This was a busy month for Miss Kathy at some local libraries performing this year’s Summer Reading Program Show.  The New Jersey State Library theme this year is, “Dream Big – READ!” – so I packed up a suitcase full of some of my Big Dreams about a vacation destination.

Problem is – I can’t decide where to go!  As I show and tell about some of the bizarre postcards and souvenirs in my display . . .

We talk about some great summer reading about the places the items represent like Paris, France with the Invention of Hugo Cabret, world-wide adventures with Herge’s classic TinTin Adventures, and the Geronimo Stilton chapter books from Italy .

Shooting Stars at Constellation Academy

This was also my first Shooting Stars Summer Reader’s Theatre Workshop for a handful of homeschool students.  Keeping things simple, we learned about “story” and worked with the theme: It’s A Mystery!

My Shooting Stars enjoyed learning their lessons and creating their first lapbook to record what they learned – in addition to writing their own Reader’s Theatre play titled, The Case of the Missing Sandcastle, performing it for a small audience of moms and siblings on the last day.

I’m doing another workshop starting next week, running three weeks, with a new group of students.  Just a little something to get our feet wet for September when I start my semester Starlight Story Studies – for Primary, Elementary, and Intermediate homeschool students.  Visit my Constellation Academy blog HERE for details.

Starlight Workshop Tea: Lapbooking Luau

Mid-July also found me and our Constellation Academy network staff conducting another homeschooling workshop for the homeschool mom – sort of a monthly retreat, renewal, retooling getaway for four hours on a Saturday.  This past month, we worked with a luau theme and created lapbooks.

For the whole story on that click HERE!

Landscapes of Vineland History Photo Exhibit

I have also been coordinating the vintage photo exhibit for the month of August at the Vineland Public Library.  Gathering vintage photos of Vineland history and history makers from local citizens, I finally finished all the caption writing, framing, and organization – and successfully set up the show on August 1st – WHEW!

My artist friend, Sandy Smith of Magnolia Hill Studios, participates and fills an entire wall of the exhibit with “inter-generational” works depicting aspects of Vineland history in mixed media by young children and senior citizens.

Really love this Andy Warhol take on our city founder, Charles K. Landis. 

The show will be running all month – but no reception this year.  Too much busy in the next week, too – so I can’t promise I’ll be doing teatime or any other of my regular daily posts next week either.  Perhaps another one-post recap of what’s coming up on my calendar which includes:

Civil War Ball on Saturday . . .
Summer Camp VBS Show Monday morning . . .
Singing the National Anthem at the Phillies Game Monday night . . .
Shooting Star Workshops starting Tuesday . . .
Starlight August Workshop on Saturday . . .
Beekeeping Field Trip on another Monday . . .

Each of these has their “list of things to do” so – please forgive me if I’m not making the blog posting with regularity or reading rounds with copious comments over the next couple of weeks.  Don’t forget me, friends – hoping to get back into the groove – settled down into a routine – curled up with tea and blog reading and more consistent blog writing each week . . . soon . . .

About Miss Kathy

"I teach families how to restore their God-given authority as the primary educator in their child’s life through the experience of reading together as a family. Learn how to use literature to create teachable moments, build strong minds, and bind loving hearts."

Kathryn Ross, writer, speaker, and dramatist, ignites a love of literature and learning to equip young and old towards developing a Family Literacy Lifestyle—reading together, learning together, loving together. Her works challenge families to deepen their literacy skills and grow into the greater things God has purposed for them. She’s taught in Christian and homeschool circles, trained in the Principle Approach® through the Foundation for American Christian Education. Miss Kathy owns Pageant Wagon Publishing, producing homeschool enrichment materials, devotional works, study guides, and theatrical dramas for church, school, and community production. She podcasts at TheWritersReverie.com and blogs at PageantWagonPublishing.com.


  1. What a wonderful, busy, relaxing, delicious, reflective, sociable summer you have had! Don’t feel bad about not blogging. I sometimes think that should be saved for long dark winter months, but thank you for sharing some of your lovely summer with us!

  2. The cannoli, looks great…the Seafood Festival look like fun…It’s always hard to decide with a bunch of different foods…Mr.& Mrs. Arsenault, brave souls…but that’s how life should be. I love Gilligan’s Island, Used to be one of my favorites are a young person…Seems like you been busy…Have a great rest of the week. with love Janice

  3. Miss Kathy, what a busy and joyful summer you have had! Time just slips away, doesn’t it?
    Our daughter is getting married on Sept 8th and it will be here before we know it. Lots of busy and fun times. A pink shower is planned for Aug 12th and I cannot wait!Enjoy your daughter as it is such a special time. It’s fun to be the mother of the bride. Enjoy each and every day.
    Love, Lady Linda

  4. You’ve had a very full month, Kathy!
    Lots of good and exciting happenings have kept you occupied.
    Take care dear lady 🙂

  5. Good heavens, you are busy! I love seeing that you featured my friends at “Gilligan’s Island”. Wasn’t that cute? I love those kids! I found that book in my vintage shop for them! That was a fun theme and cast perfectly, except I should have been Mary Ann, 😉 but I couldn’t make it. Happy 2nd birthday to sweet Mackenzie, and have a ball planning your daughter’s wedding. You are in for some Happy Times! Savor it all!, Linda

  6. What a wonderful post! I have enjoyed looking at everything and all your pictures and the excitement I could feel in your voice as I was reading this post! You are such a fun person! Enjoy these moments with your daughter in prep. for her big day…..It comes and goes in such a hurry! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  7. What a great way to show us all the fun stuff. Starting with those delicious looking connoli’s! Yummy!

    Did your daughter find a dress?

  8. Ah, what fun to plan a wedding. Every moment of planning with my daughter was so special. We have such good memories. I know you will, too!

    Loved seeing all your summer fun.

  9. Oh my gosh Kathryn, you packed a ton of fun in this post. It looks like you caught up with all the posts you planned and just now posted. HA! I have the same problems with visiting my friends. My life is busy and it just gets in the way. I loved your post so much and your daughter’s cannoli looks delish. You are so right, she will be a beautiful bride. I love the photo of both the bride and groom to be. Have fun finding a wedding gown. I have three married daughters and the weddings were awesome and sometimes stressful in the planning. However, a very special time with a daughter.

    All I can say about the rest of your post is I can see why you don’t have time to visit. HA! Also, I want to go to Gilligan’s Island.
    xo, Jeanne

  10. You make me tired to watch you, but it’s that wonderful kind of tired that I love. There isn’t a single thing on this busy schedule of yours that doesn’t look like a true delight! I look forward to the day when I am planning a wedding and look forward to sneak peeks into your plans if you’ll share them.

    I’m really excited for you that the homeschooling academy is taking off so well. It all looks so inspiring to me. Keep up the good work!

    And forget you? Nope!

  11. congrats on your daughter’s engagement and all the fun things in your life! Whew, time does fly – it is very precious indeed. Thanks for stopping by to say hello tonight!!

  12. Hi kathy,
    that looks really like a full schedule. But isn’t it nice that so many things happens in the summer. What a creative and inspirative time. I wish you and your daughter all the best for the upcoming wedding preparations. Thats a nice time, too.
    Best greetings, Johanna

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