Friday, October 29, 2010

Volcanic Ash and Ear Infections

What do volcanic ash and ear infections have in common? Never in my wildest imagination would I believe these two things would completely cancel our twice-planned trip to Italy. In April, we had cleared two weeks of responsibilities to take a stand-by flight (perk of Darrell being retired Air Force) to Italy where we used to live and visit friends that live there. It was the exact time that Europe experienced the volcanic ash incident that grounded hundreds of airplanes. We made it over to the Atlantic Ocean, put our toes in it, and vowed that we would try the trip again in the Fall. So here we are.....cleared another two weeks, preparing for the trip and poor Alec comes down with an ear infection. His first set of tubes, which worked lovely while they stayed in place, had become dislodged earlier in the summer. So when Darrell took him to the ENT on Tuesday, the dr. said NO FLYING! Alec is scheduled for surgery next Thursday. So no trip again. Since we're persistent in this household (note - a kinder word for stubborn), we will try again for Spring 2011. We do believe that everything happens for a reason, and we have peace that this is in God's hands. So no gnashing of teeth and ripping of clothes here in frustration - there is always a plan B, C, D, and sometimes even E. Plan B - heading to Chicago to spend time with my Aunt Sue and Uncle Lyle for five days. I'm sure we'll find plenty of exciting stuff that we haven't done yet there. So off we go in faithful Blueberry (our minivan) on another adventure!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Colorado trip

I have two younger sisters, one of which lives in Iowa and the other lives in Colorado Springs. My brother-in-law blessed my Iowa sister and I with tickets to spend a long weekend in Colorado Springs this past weekend. Neither of us have been out to see where they live. What a GIFT! Here is a sampling of how I spent my time - playing at the penny arcade in Manitou Springs......
touring the Olympic Training Center and Focus on the Family headquarters......

enjoying my nephews and niece......
visiting the breathtaking Garden of the Gods (above, balanced rock)....
kissing camels.....

riding the skyride above the Colorado Springs zoo.....lots of giraffes.....
and mountain goats.....
and most of all, sharing some sister time, which is rare since we all live so far apart.
I am looking forward to visiting again sometime, with my family in tow!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

I don't win many awards and I don't know what criteria my excellent friend, Anita (It's Fun Being Me) used to nominate me...but here it is!

In order to accept I must blog 7 random things about me:

1. I grew up on a REAL farm in Iowa and actually milked cows for most of my growing up years.

2. I lived in Italy for 5 years.

3. I have two wonderful sisters who live too far away from me - one in Colorado Springs and another in Iowa.

4. I've tried out for one "pageant" (not beauty!) in my life - "Little Miss Squirt" (another dairy reference) and did not win!

5. I am very short - barely grazing the 5'0" line and my husband is very short also - but neither of us seem to realize this fact most of the time unless you point it out to us! :)

6. I grew up in the country but I am really a city girl at heart - put me in a busy downtown area and I am the most content!

7. I do not eat red meat due to some stomach issues and if my family would cooperate, I would make us all vegetarians.

So there you go! In the spirit of passing on the honors, I hereby nominate the following blogs:

Little Bits of Me

Elysia, Geronimo, Aramis, and Arwen....

Aichele's Out West

From More to Less

Saturday, October 16, 2010

PACyber field trip - Clydesdale horses in Hermitage

A cool, October Friday afternoon just begs for a hayride pulled by Clydesdale horses,
a corn maze,
fun on some hay bales,
and beautiful Autumn scenery.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Our Wednesday Adventure

A canceled class led to an apple orchard experience which led to.......a day filled with rich memories! We have not explored eastern Ohio very much (except for the East Palestine pool in the summer) - so we decided to head west to visit Peace Valley Orchard in Ohio (sounds so far away, but really very close). Darrell was even able to come along as we headed out after lunch. Peace Valley Orchard boasts their own patented apple - the Buckeye Gala.
Enjoying Snickerdoodles and Apple Dumplings....
observing a Buckeye Gala tree up close.....
and of course, buying plenty of goodies!
We had time to spare and had heard of a wonderful farm near Columbiana, Ohio, so off we went.....we never found the farm but we found (can you spy them?) a marsh with sunning turtles and a robotic tractor driving endless circles testing Firestone tractors at the Firestone tire testing area.
As we headed towards Chippewa, Darrell took a detour and said he had always seen the sign for "Prayer Mountain" but had no idea what that we drove a very curvy hill up to what might possibly be the highest point in Beaver County with beautiful overlooks. As we were driving slowly around the grounds of what obviously was some sort of a ministry retreat, an elderly man in a golf cart flagged us down. He was the pastor, founder and president of "Prayer Mountain" and gave us a tour and let the kids play around the grounds. What a fantastic experience!

To travel outside of your "bubble", to meet new people and experience new things....even those within a close distance of where you that is living! And we did a lot of that today!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Where have we been hiding?

Not much blogging going on here....too many Fall activities going on. Now that all three kids are into activities, these past few weeks have been a whirlwind. We do limit activities to one per child per season (usually only Fall and Spring), but this season each child chose something different. Evan chose Baseball, which has been more of a time commitment than what we're used to. Ann-Marie chose gymnastics, which she has been invited onto pre-team and that means two practices a week, instead of one. Alec has been enjoying soccer. To add to that, I have been busy preparing for launches at the gym, Darrell is always busy with his work (good thing!), and we have been volunteering time at our church to help with the children's department renovations. Looking forward is my Colorado trip in a week and a half and our Italy trip - we are trying to get there the first two weeks of November. Oh yes, and keeping up with school. So we are not hiding, but we are out and about.....lots going on, not a lot to blog about....finding praise in everyday activities. Enjoy this time!