Not a Guest Post, but 11 More Smartphone Pictures III

photo credit: "nothing like the..." via photopin (license)
photo credit: “nothing like the…” via photopin (license)

It’s been a messy week or so.

Normally this space would contain a guest post. Through some misunderstandings and crossed wires, it does not. So I’m turning to my smartphone – this time, an Android – to save my butt.

I’m trying to get on track and write ahead, but that’s not working out so well.

These days lately sap me to the core and leave me with the choice of sleeping our writing. Sometimes I choose writing, and sleeping wins anyway. It comes in fits and stretches, and I’ve mastered a new trick:

Falling asleep while sitting up.

I hope to escape a little today – a lot – for Marie’s birthday. Lucky kid never goes to school on her birthday (she’s an 11/11 kid, who turned 11 on 11/11/11. You can never have too many 11s.)

The day will hold crepes I promised, the Shrek movies, and a day for hearts to rest. I love the Shrek movies, by the way. I can associate with the ogre. And his adventure to find his way back to where his heart is.

Thanks for the love, y’all.

11 11 one

Let’s lead off with Grace! This is after the International Festival at UNC Charlotte, my alma mater on a beautiful day. I picked up a present and Grace found an Italy shirt. We both burned our mouths on Saudi coffee!

11 11 two

There’s a familiar skip! Here’s Grace after accepting her finalist medal at a tournament in Burlington. You wouldn’t have known there were tears moments ago. We shared an Airbnb room and had a blast together.

11 11 three

The view just as the Nova Southeastern ID camp got underway. After an arduous trek on the edge of a hurricane, we arrived and walked onto the field like Karate Kid and Miagi. We learned paradise doesn’t always equal home.

11 11 fourMore Grace! I swear these were selected him at random. She made a new friend at a fall festival. We also prodded a llama within the limits of the Geneva Convention. This little dude was easier to headlock.

11 11 five

The beauty of getting lost in the woods. Well, not lost. But, sometimes, when you’re in search of your golf disc, it does you well to look up. There’s something replenishing about the woods. Must get there soon.

11 11 six

Clinching is fun, y’all. This is at that same Burlington tournament. The girls had a heckuva run. I had the honor of sitting on the bench with them. In the final, Grace scored another angry goal – the first that team gave up all weekend.

11 11 sevenOn Halloween morning, Grace and I took a trip to a fresh market at Pure Pizza. Yes, there was breakfast pizza, and mimosas. I had the pizza, but not the mimosas. I have another pic of Grace imitating her pumpkin’s face.

11 11 eight

There’s the birthday girl. She doesn’t get into a lot of pictures, unless a) someone else’s parent is taking them; or b) she’s not looking. I love the swinging pony tail. She’s ready to roll, for sure.

11 11 nineEver felt guilty about eating certain things? Me either. But this guy stood watch at a Bojangles we visited after a soccer match. Notice the product placement of the drink cup. If it works for the Chick-fil-A cows …

11 11 ten

I unleashed this beastly trio on the Red Ventures Halloween day. The Leonardo, the Cat and Rosie made off with grocery sacks loaded with goodies. And we didn’t even get to the top floor! Never too old to trick or treat.

11 11 eleven

Elise didn’t pick Nova Southeastern for college. We did stop at Wal-mart and get her and her sister NSU T-shirts. And we got to pick a few things before we left for home. The sea at Pompano Beach washed up a unique gift I gave, too.

ansel quote


  1. Aw, Happy Birthday to Marie and most definitely take time (a lot of it) to enjoy! Also love that end quote and just couldn’t agree more with you!! 😉

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      She did, I hope. This phone takes much better photos than I thought it did.

  2. NotAPunkRocker says:

    Happy birthday to Marie!

    Go Team Android!

    The first thing M said when we were driving down the road to look at our new place was it reminded him of the roads in the mountains (two lane road, lots of curves and surrounded by trees I guess?). I reminded him that we were still only two miles from Walmart, the mall and I-95, but he didn’t care…thinking he’s in the woods in the middle of nowhere is enough for him to be happy (for now)

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks! This Android has been good to me so far. The best spot to be maybe is where you feel out in the wilderness, but there’s a Target, Harris Teeter and pizza place just a short drive away.

      In case of emergency.

  3. ksbeth says:

    great photos as always. happy birthday to marie and onward with the big life decisions. we are one week apart with our birth dates. do you think we have similar personalities?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      thanks beth. one step at a time. i can see some similarities between you and marie – i found out she loves Olive Garden salad and hates crowds. Like, really hates crowds. (I knew that part already).

  4. kismaslife says:

    Happy Birthday Marie! Here’s wishing you a fabulous day of rest.

    These pictures are awesome and I’m curious what treasure was found in the sand.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I think she found a shark’s tooth or two, which would be appropriate!

  5. A.PROMPTreply says:

    A very cool b-day date to be sure! Happy b-day to your girl and must say….I enjoyed this post much more than a guest post!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      We thought it was, Torrie. I have some pretty great guest posts lined up I think you’ll really like.

      1. A.PROMPTreply says:

        Oh, I always like your guest posts, Eli, it’s just I like yours better!

  6. Lyn says:

    Hope you had a great day Marie, knowing your Dad as we do, I’m guessing it would have had more than a few surprise surprises in it 😀

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      We kept it low key – although I did put a smile on her face by bringing over chocolate donuts AND making crepes!

      1. Lyn says:

        You made crepes? What a good Dad you are 🙂

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        I made a double-batch. I think that’s just what dads do, right?

      3. Lyn says:

        Exactly 🙂

  7. tamaralikecamera says:

    Happy Birthday, Marie!
    I have the same outfit as Grace in the first photo but maybe don’t tell her because I’m in my 30’s and that can’t be cool to her.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks! Right down to the headband and Nikes?

  8. Happy Birthday to your daughter! You have a beautiful family Eli!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks Rena. I’m awfully proud.

  9. 1jaded1 says:

    Happy Belated Birthday, Marie. Enjoyed the pics, Eli and here is boping you sleep well. It is a rarity. Understand the challlenging week and hope yours gets better.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks LJ! I slept hard the past couple of nights, which is good, because there’s an unreasonably busy weekend ahead. Taking it a day at a time.

  10. cricketmuse says:

    Gotta love those triple special birthdays!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Any time the 11s line up, especially. When Elise and I went to Pompano Beach, our parking spot was 1111. I have a pic of that too.

  11. Great shots, Eli!
    I love seeing photos of your girls. And, I love the Ansel Adams quote at the end.
    I hope you have a great week, drop me a note and let me know what’s up 🙂

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Not bad for an old guy with an LG! Glad you’ve enjoyed these. It took a while to find the best quote.

      I’ll be in your inbox soon.

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