Wednesday, May 27, 2009

End of the School Year and a Birthday!

Last week we went to visit our children and grandchildren for a few days. We never need much of an excuse, but our grandson was having a birthday, he was also having an end of year play in his first grade class, and one granddaughter's class created a wax museum where each historical character (4th grade students) told about himself or herself when someone "pushed" their button. Here are a few pictures from the trip.

Amelia Earhart never looked quite so beautiful as this day! Didn't her mom, our daughter-in-law, do a great job of finding an aviator jacket, cap, and goggles---all at a very reasonable price. Our granddaughter was a very authentic looking replication of Amelia Earhart!

Of course, we went to lunch with all four of them which is always fun. Then, we went to the birthday boy's play "Going Buggy." Don't you think he's about the cutest little honey bee you've ever seen?

While there we took them all to see Night in the Museum--Battle of the Smithsonian. It was actually a really cute movie which we enjoyed and we were only interrupted once when our oldest granddaughter got her foot hung in the seat and Pops had to go get it out. Other than that, it was an uneventful evening at the movie and a really fun trip! We'll soon be looking for another good excuse to head that way!

Monday, May 25, 2009

2nd Time Around

Diane at A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words is sponsoring 2nd Time Around Tuesday so I thought I'd join in . What I have to share is a desk that once belonged to my dear aunt. I'm named after her and she was an inspiration to our entire family with her desire for all to aspire to higher education and better jobs. She left my grandparents' home on a small farm in the South in the 1920's when most women dropped out of school to get married and start a family. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but she wanted more and she wanted her younger brother and sisters to have more. After going to college, getting her undergraduate and graduate degrees and teaching for several years, her life was cut much too short when she was killed in an automobile accident at the height of her career. I was fortunate enough to be given her desk which is a treasure. It needed refinishing so when I took it to the antique store to have that done, I was told that the top was warped and I probably should just throw it away (in other words, it wasn't valuable as an antique). Now, it sits proudly refinished in our foyer and holds pictures of nieces and nephews she never met. Whether valuable as an antique or not, this "2nd time around" desk is priceless to me-----I love it because it was hers.

Lest We Forget-Memorial Day 2009

Even though cookouts are fun, let's not forget what Memorial Day is really all about. Without the sacrifice of the men and women who have fought for our country, we would not be able to enjoy all the aspects of freedom that we have today. Here is a quote from one of our military leaders many years ago:

On May 30, 1870, Maj. Gen. John A. Logan said: "Let us then all unite in the solemn feelings of the hour, and tender with our flowers the warmest sympathies of our souls! Let us revive our patriotism and strengthen our loyalty by the example of the noble dead around us."

Thanks to all for giving to a cause much greater than themselves.

Totally separate from Memorial Day, but I want to say "Happy Birthday" to our grandson today. His birthday happened to fall on Memorial Day this year so he not only had a birthday but a holiday from school! We love you!

Monday, May 18, 2009

All Things Blue

Be sure to surf on over to Sally's blog to see more links to "blue" things. My post on "Blue Monday" is of a place I love----and one where many different shades of blue can be seen! I always marvel at God's handiwork when I'm here and I never tire of seeing it. Hope you enjoy the pictures.

And, just before we headed home, there was a surprise in the sky---The BLUE Angels were flying home! I always get chill bumps when I see them and this day was no exception. Hope you've enjoyed this Blue Monday!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A Fun Saturday!

Today we took our bikes out to the beach to ride. As we started east on the island we got a text from a friend who told us the road to Ft. Pickens was open to bikes. The road has been closed since Hurricanes Ivan (2004) and Dennis (2005) wreaked havoc on the island including the road to the fort. We quickly headed that way and started the seven mile ride to the fort. I'm including some pictures we took along the way. It was hot but a nice breeze was blowing and it was fun to be there.

The first building we came to was the old Coast Guard Station on the island. It is still in a state of disrepair from the hurricanes and is no longer being used by the Coast Guard.

Then, we saw the remains of one of the batteries.

Riding on to the actual entrance to the fort, we saw several osprey nests in the trees and if you look closely at this one you can see the mamma bird sitting on the side of the nest. She had probably just brought an unsuspecting fish to her babies.

We finally arrived at the entrance to the fort which we haven't seen in about 5 years. The only way to get there since the hurricanes has been by taking a boat to the island and we sold our boat a few years back.

Some of the buildings survived the hurricanes but there is still no electricity on that end of the island. There was the sound of generators in the buildings that are left standing. The visitor center floated off its foundation the night of the hurricane and it appeared today as if they're going to re-build it.

Here are some pictures looking across the island to the mainland. You can see the lighthouse as well as the Naval Air Station and downtown (if you look closely).

Here is a picture of some of the trees on the island. It's very evident they've endured some harsh weather conditions through the years.

We were excited to see a crane standing in one of the marshes near the road. He watched me take his picture a couple of times and then decided he didn't want his picture taken again.

As we rode back to our car we had to pass the shorebirds' nests and they were not the least bit happy about our intrusion. They screeched and swooped down to try to run us away from their nests (which we were, of course, not going to bother but they didn't know that!).

It was a fun day in the sun!! We loved visiting the fort again but I can't imagine what it was like for the soldiers back in the days that it was an active fort. It's an unforgiving climate out there in the summer!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Guest Room Pictures

Kelly at Kelly's Korner is hosting Show Us Where You Live Friday. This week guest rooms are being featured. Go over to Kelly's blog and check out the guest rooms. You won't be disappointed.

Here are some pictures of our guest room. The one below shows the bedroom from the hall entryway. The bed is an antique iron bed painted white.

In the corner of the room you see an antique wash stand complete with an antique bowl and pitcher and white hand towels. All around the guest room you'll be able to see family pictures. The rocking chair you see was my grandmother's and we've painted it white.

In the picture below you see a small chest which my daddy made for me when I was born. I know it was a labor of love and it's dear to my heart.

In the next picture, you will see one of my baby dresses which I had framed. My grandmother made it for me and my aunt embroidered it. Another aunt gave me the gold bar pins that I've framed in with the dress but you might not be able to see them in the picture.

Here's just another view of the bed (just realized the mirror looked crooked in the picture so I went to check. It's not really----I must have been holding the camera crooked). The quilt on the foot of the bed is not an old one but a very dear friend just quilted it for me a year or so ago and I love it! What a treasure.

Hope you've enjoyed my version of Show Us Where You Live Friday-Guest Room hosted by Kelly!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A Tribute to Some Special People in My Life

Happy Mother's Day! My mother has been gone for almost 14 years but I think of her so often and still miss her terribly. She was a wonderful mother as well as grandmother but she was also just a fun person to be around. She loved to laugh and have a good time and was SO sweet--always very appreciative of everything. I hope I can one day be remembered as she is remembered today.
These little guys are the reasons I'm a mother and they make me so proud. I thank God for them and wonder where the years have gone. I never knew how much a mother could love her children, but I quickly learned as soon as they were born. It's just a love that's hard to imagine. They've grown up now and married wonderful Christian wives and have given us four beautiful grandchildren. Life goes on and the love never ends. Love you, BOYS!!!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Spending Some Time Soaking in the Sun (The flowers as well as ME!)

I wish I could tell you the garden below is mine, but it's actually one in Colonial Williamsburg. However, it might be what inspired me to come home and plant more flowers (even though I don't need very much inspiration to do that).

I've enjoyed "playing in the dirt" since coming back from our trip (good therapy so I can get over withdrawals from the grandchildren). Here are a few pictures of some of our plants.

The picture below shows some plants I just put in yesterday. I put the same grouping all around the border of the front flower bed and hopefully they will all grow and fill in the space. I'll try to post a picture of that later IF they do what I hope they do!

I'm not even sure what the plant seen below (white blooms) is but I bought it last year because I liked it, it survived the winter, and is in full bloom this year. If anyone knows what it is, please tell me.

I'm really liking verbena this spring. I like the way it blooms and cascades over the pot. Here it is with marigold in the pot above it.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

MomMom and Pops + 4

Recently we went on a "field trip" to Williamsburg, Virginia with our grandchildren. It was a highly anticipated trip but it's possible the children were just excited because they were getting to go on a trip together. Hopefully, by the time it was over, they had learned experientially more about American history. We met them at the airport and flew to Newport News, Virginia, picked up a rental van, and drove to our hotel. I think they might have been happy to just stay there and swim in the indoor pool and play computer games, and, of course, we did that later, but we were excited to show them Colonial Williamsburg. Here are some highlights of our trip along with some pictures of our activities.

First night-We ate at Chowning's Tavern where there was a colonial musician and a colonial magician. The children got to "assist" the magician. They were asked to inspect the rope (Ashlyn), inspect the cup (Hannah), and actually take part in some of the tricks. David turned a ball under the cup into an orange and Aubrey turned the ball into a potato. On the way to the hotel that night, David asked "Is there a vending machine where I can get a potato and an orange? I need to practice that trick!"

First full day-First we went to the visitor center to rent costumes and check on other activities for the day.
Because the children were wearing costumes, there were certain activities they were allowed to take part in. First we went to The Magazine where David learned to be soldier. He LOVED his sergeant (not) and was ready to enlist right then. The girls then went to the garden where they actually planted a row of turnips. After that we went to The Geddy House where they learned proper manners. From there, the girls had to go to the post office to apply for a job as a tutor and then to the printing press to learn how to print their application for the job. It took a little explaining to the children for them to understand that when the sergeant was "mean", he was playing a role and when the lady at the Geddy House made an example out of them, she was playing a role. They were beginning to think everyone in Colonial Williamsburg was RUDE. However, our four little colonial children got attention everywhere we went. We aren't sure if people thought they worked there or if just seeing those 4 children in their colonial clothes drew all the attention.
People constantly asked if they could take their picture, etc. I told the children they now know how celebrities feel with the paparazzi following them. We all went on a wagon ride, Ashlyn played a game that the colonial children would have played, they climbed in the towering oak trees with low hanging limbs, and then Aubrey took spinning lessons (she's the only one who chose to do that). She was quite good and caught on quickly. Our lanthorn (lantern) tour scheduled for that night had to be cancelled due to lightning; however, we were OK with that since we had been extremely busy ALL day.

Second full day-We slept a little later and then left for Jamestown Settlement. This was an interesting day for all of us. First we saw how the first settlers lived and how difficult life was for them. Hannah and Ashlyn tried on the armor that the settlers wore for protection when they left the fort. We then went to see replicas of the ships which brought the settlers over and we were able to explore the entire ship. The children got to try out the bunks and see just how wearisome it must have been to travel so many days and such a long distance on those ships. After touring the ships, we went to see the Indian village. There the children were able to play games the Indian children played, see how they cooked over an open fire, try their hand at grinding corn, and also learned to skin a hide. Jamestown Settlement was lots of fun for all of us. We left there and drove to Yorktown and through the battlefield. Although there wasn't much for them to do there, they can say they've been to Yorktown. We left Yorktown to go back to Williamsburg for A Grand Medley of Entertainments which recreates an 18th century traveling show. It was fun to watch the children laugh at the antics of the players.

Our last day-We got up and packed all of our suticases and loaded them into the car---it was time to check out of the hotel. We went to the Visitor Center to catch the bus to Colonial Williamsburg. First we visited the Capitol and then the gaol (jail). The children got a kick out of seeing what life was like in jail in colonial times. Later, Ashlyn and I visited an old cemetery and the Episcopal Church where George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and other famous people have worshiped. We ate lunch and visited the Govenor's Palace briefly before leaving for the airport. However, before we got to the airport, we got an email from the airlines saying our flight had been delayed due to weather. Since we had more time, we went to Historic Jamestown and the children got to see a glass blowing demonstration and wade in the James River.

Finally, we had to head to the airport and catch our flight back home. Even though we had a terrific time and learned so much about history, they were ready to see their parents and I'm sure the parents were ready to see them, too. It was a joy to us to watch our grandchildren learn new things, see things they've studied in school, have fun together, and get to experience life in colonial times. What a blessing that we were able to do this with them and we thank their parents for sharing them with us for a few days. The time we spent together was priceless.