Saturday, January 31, 2009


I got this in an email from Gram who got it from a friend.
I just had to share!! :-)

An ad on Craigslist...
To the Guy Who Mugged Me Downtown (Downtown, Savannah )

I was the white guy with the black Burberry jacket that
you demanded I hand over shortly after you pulled the knife
on me and my girlfriend. You also asked for my girlfriend's
purse and earrings. I hope you somehow come across this message.
I'd like to apologize.

I didn't expect you to crap your pants when I drew my
pistol after you took my jacket. Truth is, I was wearing the jacket for
a reason that evening, and it wasn't that cold outside.
You see, my girlfriend had just bought me that Kimber 1911 .45 ACP
pistol for Christmas, and we had just picked up a shoulder holster
for it that evening. Beautiful pistol, eh? It's a very intimidating
weapon when pointed at your head, isn't it?

I know it probably wasn't a great deal of fun walking back to
wherever you'd come from with that brown sludge flopping about in
your pants. I'm sure it was even worse since you also ended up
leaving your shoes, cellphone, and wallet with me. I couldn't have
you calling up any of your buddies to come help you try to mug us
again. I took the liberty of calling your mother, or "Momma" as
you had her listed in your cell, and explaining to her your situation.
I also bought myself some gas on your card. I gave your shoes to
one of the homeless guys over by Vinnie Van Go Go's, along with all
of the cash in your wallet, then I threw the wallet itself in a dumpster.

I called a bunch of phone sex numbers from your cell. They'll be
on your bill in case you'd like to know which ones. Alltel recently shut
down the line, and I've only had the phone for a little over a day now,
so I don't know what's going on with that. I hope they haven't
permanently cut off your service. I was about to make some
threatening phone calls to the DA's office with it.
Oh well.

So, about your pants; I know that I was a little rough on you when
you did this whole attempted mugging thing, so I'd like to make it
up to you. I'm sure you've already washed your pants, so I'd like
to help you out. I'd like to reimburse you for the detergent you
used on the pants. What brand did you use, and was it liquid or
powder? I'd also like to apologize for not killing you and instead
making you walk back home humiliated. I'm hoping that you'll
reconsider your choice of path in life. Next time you might not be
so lucky. If you read this message, email me and we'll do lunch
and laundry.

Peace! - Alex


HP - Hey LLB if we don't have school on Friday, we'll have been out 14 days straight!
LLB - Really? holds hand up and starts to count fingers one.... twwwoooo.... threee..... Wait. I have a headache!
HP - breaks out in hysterical laughter.
LLB - No... no... wait... that didn't come out right... I can count!
HP - can barely breathe he's laughing so hard.
LLB - breaks out in giggles...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

We ended the day with a bang...


I was sitting at a traffic light after a lovely afternoon of ice skating and Vietnamese food with my friend R, her 2 children, and LLB when all of a sudden - BANG!
A lady rear ended my sweet marshmallow of a car.
Thankfully, no one was hurt. I think we will be sore tomorrow, but we are all in one piece and the only injury sustained was the car.

The woman who hit me wanted to leave. I told her no. She wanted to go to work. I told her I didn't care.
The police officer was very nice.
We filled out the requisite paperwork.
We exchanged information and we left.
I have since notified Liberty... They were just as wonderful as last time.
R said, "If this keeps up, all you'll need is a new engine and you'll have a whole new car!"
She's got a point...
Personally, I would prefer to keep my car as was...
Alas, they will fix it - again.
I'll call Earl tomorrow.
I am just thankful that no one was hurt. That makes the day okay.

Plant a Seed

The folks at Mom Central have teamed up with Kelloggs to promote the new Plant A Seed Campaign. Now you can help us help kids Earn Their Stripes™ and be their very best by rebuilding fields around the country. It only takes a minute, but the benefits last a lifetime.

PLANT A SEED. Nominate a playing field in your community - football, baseball, soccer.

NURTURE IT. Show support for fields across the country. Vote for yours and someone elses!!

HELP IT GROW. Create your own seed packs and spread the word.

They will choose 30 fields to rebuild! Do you have a field in your town that could use a re-do? I know we've got a few around here... Take a few moments out of your day and nominate your local field.

Once on the site - which has amazing graphics - you can see where the nominated fields are, where the fields they rehabbed last year are, you even can create your own seed packets to help spread the news.

So, go earn your stripes! Get out there and nominate a field!
Oh, and this Sunday, watch for the commercial on the Super Bowl... I know I'll be watching.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Green Works Wipes

I was asked to write a review of the Clorox Green Works Wipes by the good folks at Mom Central.
I LOVE these things!
They are thick and they feel like a real cloth in my hand. The fragrance is light and a little citrusy. I like that. It smells clean.
These Green Works Wipes are great little cleaners! I had grease on my counter (from someone cooking on the griddle) and it wiped right up without a streak - THAT is amazing since I have black granite and you can see every single little speck of anything on that counter...
Do I recommend these wipes? You bet!
Want more information?? Check out their Green Works Web Site.
Run right out and get yourself a canister! Mine were the ones with the green top and when these are gone, I'm going to get some more.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


We are off for a day on the slopes in PA.
If you stop in, let the dog out to pee, k?
I'm sure I'll have many stories to tell upon our return...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Listen to this...

Last night we had the news on while we were preparing dinner.
All of sudden I was jerked out of my pouring drinks coma by the latest Obama tax "initiative".
It seems that if you don't pay income tax, you can get a refund.
So, I do pay in, but I don't get a refund. You don't pay in and you get one?
Sorry - does not compute.
How, pray tell, is THAT going to work?
If you don't pay in, how can you get a refund? That makes absolutely no sense what so ever.
Besides -
You can't have your goes out ofs be higher than your goes intos.
That's basic accounting.

Oh - that's right - he's going to raise my taxes and spread my hard earned cash around... And then he's going to tell me that I'm getting a tax break.

Yeah... not.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

How do you say it?

LLB was watching the inauguration at school - because they made them.
One supposedly highly educated woman was introducing the instrumentalists and said the word Pianist.
She said it "Peenist".
LLB found that odd. Pianist has an a in the middle of the word. We say Pee ah nist or Pee an ist. We don't say peenist.
Peenist can be misconstrued as phallic...

Pianist has an a. Use it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Bag Lady

Yesterday I had to pick up LLB from school and while I was there, I had to get the bags from the recycling program.

FYI: The recycling program is run by Trex. We collect those awful plastic shopping bags and bring them to the recycling center. The grade that collects the most bags wins a free bench. I like free. I want free. I do what it takes to get free stuff for my school because I'm the PTO Chair... and because I'm self deprecating.

Anyway, I was stuffing about a million of these bags into the back of my car when I realized that my car looked like that of those little old ladies who hoard. I had bags stuffed up to the ceiling. They were multicolored... it was lovely.. except that I really looked like a little old lady who hoards bags... I had the Civic. It is silver - the color car that little old ladies drive... I couldn't have stuffed one more bag in the back seat - it was that full. And, No, I couldn't see out the back window at all...

LLB got the giggles when I got in and said, "Hey, we look like the little old lady who saves plastic bags."
"No, mom... that's just you! I have nothing to do with this."
I couldn't get to the recycling center fast enough!!
She laughed the whole way.

I am now known as "The Bag Lady".
The things I do...

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


All of these crazy people who are down on the Mall in DC waiting to see nothing...
If they get frostbite and lose a few toes or fingers, or pneumonia, or catch a cold...
Can they sue the US Government for not keeping them warm??
Are they going to want a bail-out, too??
I'm just askin'....

Park City Mountain Resort

Need a vacation destination that's family friendly?
I've got one for you... Park City Mountain Resort.

It's a lovely ski resort that is made for families with skiers of all abilities. The website is phenomenal. You can make all your reservations online - including air and transportation.

If you are a good skier, you can sign up for ski college. You'll ski for 5 days with the same coach. I bet you'll get really really good in those 5 days. They have a half day ski school for people of all abilities. That's what I need. I need someone to kick my butt and perfect my stem christies.

If you are a disabled skier, Park City Mountain Resort is the place for you. They have a terrific program there - complete with the latest in equipment and teaching techniques. My friend J, who was born with 1 leg and was an Olympic skier, skied there often and loved it.

What's that? Skiing isn't your thing? Oh, puhleeze... they have tubing, sleigh rides, shopping, winter fly fishing (who knew?), snow mobiling, hot air ballooning, and more. Stick the kids in ski school and go enjoy yourself!

Need a vacation? Go here!

This review was brought to you by the good people at Mom Central.


Mini Kitty is a crazy kitty!
Her newest obsession is a flat piece of cardboard - an 8.5 x 11" piece of cardboard. She enjoys it most at 5am. She flings it around the bedroom. She bites it. She grabs it. She pounces on it. It's her new "giant mouse".

Mr. has threatened to use it as kindling...

Monday, January 19, 2009

Living Well

I was asked to review the new Stop & Shop Living Well site by the good folks at Mom Central.

The site is terrific!

The first step to making healthier choices begins in the grocery store. Stop & Shop Supermarket just launched Healthy Ideas. Healthy Ideas was created to make it easy for you to shop for healthy foods without reading all the labels. We are all into easy, and this sure is easy. There is a little Healthy Ideas symbol on the shelf labels at the store. The shelf labels indicate that the foods are lower in fat, calories and sodium than other choices. It's a really neat idea when you stop to think about it.

The other thing that I found great about this site is the recipe section. Cooking healthy is easier than ever! They have healthy recipes for every occasion - whether it's a quick, nutritious dinner, a new idea for vegetables, or a delectable and healthy dessert, you can find it over there -- AND the nutritional information is right there for you to see before you cook it. I think the seafood recipes are wonderful! I love the Baked Salmon in Foil recipe. It's light and yummy! They have at least 50 chicken recipes. And they all look pretty good. I'm going to have to Mr. to make me some of them for dinner this week!

We don't have Stop & Shop around here, but when we lived in New England, we were frequent shoppers there. I enjoyed their Peapod grocery delivery service very much, too. Peapod is healthy living delivered to your door! If you live near a Stop & Shop and haven't tried their Peapod, there is a coupon on the site... give it a shot - you'll be glad you did.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Plants and Stuff

I know it is January. I know it is cold. Yes, I know I can't grow squat.
I have a friend who has developed this website and I thought you all should go visit it. It is called Learn2Grow.

This is the perfect website for those who are beginning gardeners as well as for those who actually have clue. They have this newsletter that you sign up for and once a week you get tips on plants and stuff.

They even have a section for projects that you might want to tackle - even kids projects. Take a peek.

This week's tips were on how to keep houseplants alive - yes, I know I need this - how to plan your garden, what trees are good, what flowers are good... and more.

My favorite part of the site is where they tell me what I'm supposed to be doing now based on where I live. This is just terrific!!

Please go and sign up - it's free!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thursday 13

Thirteen Things Ladybug is Thinking About Today

1. Mr. is home from the great white north. He arrived last night.

2. His flight landed 20 minutes early. Unfortunately, he sat in the plane at the gate for 45 minutes because they couldn't find a stairway. (Personally, I found the whole thing quite funny.)

3. I made a banana bread yesterday. It is gone. All eaten up by two kids who obviously need me to make banana bread more often.

4. I tried the Y*plait whips yogurt. The lemon meringue tastes just like lemon meringue pie! It is yummy!!!

5. We had a 2 hour delay today. It sure was nice to sleep in.

6. It's sad that the only time I get to sleep in is during a school delay.

7. We are thinking about going night skiing this weekend. Anyone interested in joining us?

8. It's going to be cold, but that's okay.

9. It's still warmer here than in Montreal!

10. Mr. says it's good for him to go there because it makes him appreciate how nice and warm?? it is here.

11. I got the summer camp information yesterday. Yikes the prices have sky rocketed.

12. I sure hope the church has some scholarship money...

13. #1 is going to volunteer for the special needs camp again. He enjoys those kids and that camp so much. That's wicked cool!

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others' comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

I thought I'd share a few photos with you this morning.

This is a sunset that I saw on the way home from our vacation.
I took LLB to school yesterday morning and when I was coming home, I saw the moon. It was gorgeous!
This is a field near my house... Those black things -- those are cows.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Next Time I'm Not Being Nice

It seems that the powers that be found this particular post and they have asked me to take it down.
So... it's down.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Just A Mom With A Camera

I enjoy taking pictures. I kinda have a knack for it.
It's probably the only artistic thing that I have a knack for...

I've been asked to take head and pirouette shots for one of the ballerinas at the studio. She is going to audition for some real stuff and needs them.

It's cool. Someone wants little old me to take these very important pictures. I am kind of excited about this. First band kids, then Nutcracker kids, now real ballerinas... the next thing you know, I'll be taking senior pictures!

Maybe eventually I'll have a little business where I can make some pin money. If I need a name for my little venture, I can call myself something like "Just a mom with a camera".

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Zebbie's Christmas Adventure

Most of you know that Zebbie spent his Christmas vacation in West Virginia with friends of ours. K picked him up on Monday evening and chauffeured him back to WV in style.

When he arrived at The Farm, K unpacked the car and brought Zeb in. Zeb looked around and took it all in. 9 cats... cool... 2 other dogs... no big deal... He watched B unpack his stuff and set up his bed. Then he promptly went in and relaxed. You know... the drive is long and lying down in the back seat is tough.

Now, I'm not a crazy dog owner, but it was Christmas and I wanted Zeb to have a good one. I sent a letter detailing his eating and sleeping habits. I sent packages of cookies and treats - all labeled as to when he gets them and that they should be shared with the other dogs in the family. I sent his bowls. I even sent his food in the rolling container I keep in my pantry - heaven forbid the boy should starve!

B and K got the biggest bang out of his froo froo bowls. He has the Southern Living set that I got for free for having a party. (Yes, that was the reason I had the party, but at least I didn't pay $50 for them, right?) So NOW she thinks - okay - knows that I'm a crazy dog person. Her comment to me that night on the phone was, "If I ever get to come back as a dog, I want to be a dog in your house! That dog has better stuff than we do!"

Zebbie won their hearts in a matter of moments. He slept in his crate exactly twice the whole time he was there. The rest of the time he was either on the couch curled up with them or in their bed curled up with them. That is what you call a spoiled rotten dog. B told me that she wasn't sure if he'd ever go back to sleeping in his create. (Trust me... he is back in his bed at night.)

Zebbie spent his days with B visiting the horses, walking the farm, or asleep on her couch. It's a tough life! (According to B, he did miss us. Every time a car went down the road, he stopped to look.) Zeb loves to walk and she walked him everywhere. You would have thought the old boy would have lost a pound or two, but all those treats I sent didn't help that situation.

He did show his quirky side... B was busy in the house and turned to find him missing. She searched high and low and found him curled up around their toilet. It's a good thing I told her that he does that... The next time he turned up missing she found him in her bed curled up under the covers. Now, I consider THAT bad manners, but fortunately she didn't mind.

I'm kind of surprised Zeb actually came home. They loved him. K could be heard in the background of my phone conversations B saying, "You can't have him back! He needs to stay here! He's our dog now!" After I hung up with B the day before everyone was due to arrive home, I told my family that I wouldn't be surprised to get home to find no dog and a ransom note on my counter with a list of demands.

Zeb had a wonderful vacation. He is looking forward the next time he can visit at B and K's. I'm not sure if we'll get him back next time, though...

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

The End...

We arrived back in town on New Year's Eve... We all had empty refrigerators and empty stomachs, so we thought we'd stop at our favorite local burger joint for a quick bite. After which we'd hit the grocery store across the street for milk, bread, eggs, and oj.

We pulled up and the place was empty but open. Mr. ran in to make sure they were indeed open. And they were. Except that when we went to place our order, the guy at the counter told us that they were closing at 8. (It was 7:45.) There was no sign on the door. There was nothing to indicate that that indeed was the case. He told us we could take out. We had no choice... we said okay.

Mr. ran off to get the groceries while I waited for the food with Grandpa. We put everyone else back in the car because they were seated under suitcases and such. We can't waste time getting into the car! We were hungry!!

While we were waiting, another couple came in. They were told - at exactly 8pm - that they couldn't order because the place was closed. Nothing like turning the paying customer away!!!

We got home and swilled down our food. It was delicious! Gram's burger was rare - exactly the way she likes it. She enjoyed every bite... Unfortunately, it didn't like her and 2 hours later, it came back.

Now, that's a really crappy way to end a vacation!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Meeting Renee

Sunday was my day to meet fellow blogger, Renee. Gram and I had planned to go to lunch to meet Renee and then do a little shopping in the afternoon since the rest of the family was supposed to be off skiing. Alas, the roads turned messy so they turned around and came home. LLB decided to join us rather than stay home with the boys and watch football.

Since I had met Daisy, FlipFlop, and Melli I wasn't nervous. Besides, it's like you know these people - you read about their lives every day. Renee was exactly what I expected! She is sweet nice, and just a terrific person. We chatted for hours but the time FLEW by!

Mr. and the kids headed out to Keystone on Monday afternoon. They had to wait for Nicole's new fridge to be delivered before they could leave. LLB learned that skiing in Colorado is far different than skiing in Virginia. Their green trails are like our blue. The mountains are bigger in Colorado and therefore the runs are much longer. She did her 1.5 hour run and had enough. Auntie Nicole welcomed her with open arms and a hot cocoa. Mr. headed back out to ski his butt off and had a marvelous time! His fastest time was 6 min. from top to bottom and that was in a full tuck with skis pointed straight down. That is not something you would ever catch me doing. I am a cautious skier. #1 has had more experience on skis than LLB, so he was out there shooshing and meeting people and just having a wonderful time. He got about 4 or 5 long runs in before he got cold and tired and went to find Auntie Nicole and Uncle John.

Tuesday we hit the Denver Mint. It was really fun! You have to arrive at a specific time with your reservation sheet in your hand. Getting in was almost as bad as TSA. You have to leave all bags, wallets, cameras, etc. in your car. You have to take all metal off and go through the metal detector. While we waited for our tour to start we saw coins from biblical times, coins from the early days of the US, and more. It was absolutely fascinating!

The tour was exactly 30 min. Our tour guide was a cute college student who was home on break. He was very knowledgeable and when we asked him about the security on the employee's end, he told us that it was very simple - No coins in. No coins out. It made sense.

After the mint, we went back to Nicole's for a quick lunch.
Then we went to the Science Museum. Mr. decided to do the planetarium show because he doesn't do Imax with the motion. The rest of us headed off to the Imax dinosaur show. LOL! His planetarium show turned out to be an Imax! He got to fly through a black hole!

We saw dinosaurs - it seems I cut the line to get into the dino exhibit. But, I never saw a line and I just walked in - followed another family. The rest of the family followed me in - after they got stopped by the lady in the hallway. (The lady who looked like she was just directing another family when I walked by.) The dino exhibit was cool. This dino is outside the Imax theater. You can't take pictures in the dino exhibit...
From there we saw all kinds of exhibits, but my favorite was the sign behind the bathroom door.

The views in Denver are simply stunning and the photos I took just don't do it justice.
Our adventures in Denver were fun. Mr. doesn't travel well and he was starting to channel his father again, so it really was time to come home.

Speaking of home, we still had to get there. The flight out of Denver was on time and schedule. No - I skipped the turkey sandwich on that flight. I actually had an apple walnut salad from McDo in the Denver airport.

On the way home we flew through Atlanta. Have I mentioned that the Atlanta airport is HUGE?! We had 2 hours between flights. We located the gate and went there. It was as far out as you could get... Gate E37. After we walked a mile to get some lunch, I decided that the gate was just a little too empty. I went and asked a Delta person if this was indeed our gate. I was informed that D17 was our new departure gate. We finished up our lunches and headed out. On the way, I saw an information desk and asked again. It turns out our gate was moved to B15. Have I mentioned that the airport is huge? They connect the terminals with a subway train.

When we reached B15, I went to the lady at the desk and asked if this was our gate for real. Yes... it was, "but they might change it again, so pay attention". Mr. was behind us since he had to pack his computer up, so I called him with the news of the change. He arrived within a few minutes. Once we boarded the plane, we were told that we were going to have to wait because of high winds here at home. 2 hours late, we took off. The plane we booked the flight on was a 757 - but we booked in April. The plane we were on had 19 rows... It was small... smaller than I would have like to be flying into 40mph winds. But, I know that the pilot wants to be home for dinner, too... so...

We landed with the smoothest landing of the 4 flights. Our luggage was all here. The wind - it was whipping as we waited for the shuttle to take us to our car. We were all pretty cranky, but at least we were home.

The story doesn't exactly end there...
But you will have to wait until tomorrow for the conclusion.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

More Vacation Tales

On Christmas day, we opened stockings and presents at the rental house and then went to Nicole's for dinner. She made yummy hors d'euvres for us to munch on while she made biscuits, ham, turkey, and other delicious tidbits. We ate like kings!!!

Then we took a breath, unbuttoned our pants, got our forks ready, and chowed down on the most wonderful pies ever. LLB loves pumpkin - she was in heaven. Mom and I had apple and dad and Nicole went for the cherry. It was sooo yummy. I wish I had a piece of it now...

On Friday we took a drive to Colorado Springs. We wanted to see the Air Force Academy - which according to their website and the gentleman on the phone the day before Christmas - was supposed to be open. We arrived to find the weather cold and blustery and the Academy closed. That is not a very inviting atmosphere and it certainly does not make the kids want to attend. (#1 was not impressed and LLB is simply an Annapolis girl all the way.)

The campus is very nice, but it doesn't have the charm that Annapolis has. The chapel was open - it was really lovely. We took our pictures and headed back to the car where it was warm. From there we went to a coffee factory that turned out to be a tiny storefront with okay coffee. The day was turning into a bust, but we were making the best of it.

We decided to stop at the Cave of the Winds. (It was cold out so the Garden of the Gods will have to wait for a warmer day - like when we visit in the summer sometime.) The four of us and Gram signed up for the tour. We knew our luck was about to change when we read the sign:
At least there would be no obnoxious people or crying children to deal with down there!!
It was a fun tour with interesting caves and rock formations. My favorite part was the sparkling jewel like formations that looked like tiny diamonds. I like shiny sparkly things!! (Of course I can't find the picture...) We noticed that there wasn't a lot of color in the cave like there is here at Luray Caverns. That must have something to do with the minerals in the ground or something. It was a fun way to spend an hour!

The next day we did the tour at Celestial Seasonings Tea Factory. When you get out of the car, there is a most wonderful aroma - seasonings and spices and tea and yummy.... I could have stood there and just breathed it in for an hour - it was so wonderful!
While you wait for your tour to start, you can taste all the teas you want. They were so good! They also make coffee - who knew?? The vanilla hazelnut is delicious! (I would have brought some home, but my suitcase was full. Besides, I think I might be able to find it in the grocery store here. When I do, I'll let you know.)

The funniest part of the tour is when they give you all hair nets. We all looked ridiculous, but unfortunately, we took them off before we remembered we wanted to take a picture. So - you'll just have to envision us with hideous white hairnets. Oh... my... we were a vision - a dream... okay, maybe a nightmare.

The tour was great. My favorite part was when they let you in the mint room. The smell is divine! My sinuses cleared in moments. (If I worked there, I'd never have to worry about a stuffy nose - ever!)

After Celestial, we went to the Dushanbe Tea House. It was a lovely setting on a cold and blustery day. Unfortunately, the staff left a LOT to be desired. Nicole called for a reservation and they put us on the list. When we arrived, they told us it would be a few more minutes. An hour and a half later, I noticed that our names were on the first page and the hostess was reading names from the second page. When I mentioned that, she didn't even apologize. That bad behavior sealed it for me until when she sat us at the coldest table around she said, "This table has a reservation scheduled in an hour and half. I think you should have plenty of time to eat." Excuse me?!! That was beyond rude. I will say that the food was nice (except for mom's cold potatoes and my overcooked polenta) and the chai was yummy. When we were getting ready to go, the hostess flitted over to take our money. She really wanted us out of that table. I asked for her name. It is Kathleen. I will be emailing the Tea House to tell them of my experience. Not that they care, but... if you go to Boulder, take your pictures out front and then go find somewhere else to have tea and eat.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Next Stop...

The Colorado Train Museum!Mr. was like a kid in a candy store. He LOVES trains!
It was a very cold and blustery day, but Mr. was out there crawling all over the trains, taking pictures, and simply enjoying himself.

We saw all kinds of trains! Big ones and little ones. Garden trains and miniature trains. It was a terrific spot - it would have been much better on a warmer day, but beggars can't be choosers. This is a picture of Mr.'s favorite train - it had huge wheels - taller than #1!Mr. is such a scofflaw! He needed a picture of himself on a train, so I indulged him... Fortunately, we didn't get caught!

This is the Galloping Goose - a very rare bird....

I love this big old yellow train... It looks like it's coming around the bend.

#1 is trying to not get eaten up by the snow blower. Run, #1!!
Ella is sitting on a bench in front of the museum. She is so patient!
It was fun and the perfect way to spent Christmas Eve morning. LLB is NOT a train buff. Rather than put up with our silliness, she decided to stay back with John and hack on the computer, play some video games and hit St*rb*cks! Let's just say that she was the warm one.

If you are ever in Denver, take the short drive to see this terrific museum!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Honey, I'm Home!

We came, we saw, we are home.

I'll have to tell you about our adventures in pieces because there is so much to tell!

Long ago - okay, so it was last week...

We left for Colorado on the 23rd - Up at 3, left home at 4:15. Yes, it was really early...

We parked the car in long term parking, hopped on the shuttle bus that waited for us to unload our car, and headed for the Delta counter. We swiped our boarding passes and waited to get our luggage weighed. All the bags were under the requisite 50 pounds (except for one...) The agent at the counter put his foot on the scale when we put Gram's humungo suitcase on the scale. According to him, it weighed 84 lbs. We all turned and looked at her. She was mortified! He came clean and we all got a good chuckle. Then we headed off to drop the suitcases at TSA and make our way to security.

They scrutinized our passports and our boarding passes. They decided that we looked okay and sent us on to the metal detectors. As I was throwing my shoes, coat, and camera bag into bins, the security woman started listing game systems that needed to be out of the carry-on luggage. I asked about gameboy DSs - since we were carrying 3 of them. (Hey, I NEED my games!)
She was kinda snippy and curtly asked me if she had said DSs.
I told her "not yet, but I was waiting to hear them on the list."
She lightened up... I really wasn't trying to be difficult - honest.
Mr. was not happy with me for even talking to her never mind making eye contact.
Fortunately, I passed through the security without having to strip naked and dance on the pole, so I considered it a good start to the day.

We got to the gate - our flight was on time and uneventful. We actually got to Atlanta early - which was a very good thing because we originally only had 25 min. between flights. Because of our good fortune, we made our connection with time enough for Mr. to pick up a sandwich to bring on the plane.

Our flight from Atlanta to Denver was late leaving. We boarded the plane - boys in seats ABC and girls in seats DEF. Gram and Mr. were on the aisle, #1 and myself were in the middle seats. Grandpa and LLB had the windows. (I only tell you this because it serves to make the following even funnier.) Once we were in the air, the flight staff told us about the in-flight breakfast menu. Please note that we were originally going to wait until we hit Denver to eat, but the menu selections looked pretty good - and I was hungry. I decided on a turkey sandwich on cranberry nut bread - their description is: What a sandwich! A fantastic blend of Boar’s Head® Mesquite Smoked Turkey and Mild Cheddar Cheese with the unexpected surprise of Crushed Berries Cranberry Sauce spread across a Cranberry Nut Bread. Doesn't that sound yummy? Well, that sandwich caused all kinds of angst with Mr. It seems he thought that we had a deal that we wouldn't purchase food on the flight. I have no idea where he got that idea, but whatever. (Normally, I don't purchase food on a flight, but it really looked pretty good, don't cha think?) Mr. was irate! (He has never denied me anything - never mind food - so his behavior was bizarre! I think he must have been channeling his father, Aurelio!!!) At first I thought he was joking. BUT, since he was making such a stink - across the aisle - I quickly realized he was serious. I'm not one to roll over, so I decided to fix his boat. I purchased said sandwich with my Amex Gift Card so that I didn't use any of "his" hard earned cash - and I told him so -- from across the aisle. Then, I enjoyed every single bite! Our fellow passengers probably talked about that mean husband who gave his wife a hard time for ordering a sandwich for the next week. LOL!

FYI: Later that night, Mr. apologized for his wacky behavior. We still laugh about it - heck I was laughing on the plane! This is the stuff that memories are made of!!

We arrived in Colorado still married.

Nicole met us at the airport with Ella, the elephant.
She took Mr, the kids, and the luggage and left me with Gram and Grandpa to get the rental van.

We arrived at the car rental which smelled like old popcorn. Eeewww... We suffered through the rental agent spiel and headed out to customer service to get a car. The man told me I could pick any van in row E. I wanted a foreign car, since that's what I normally drive. I chose the Toyota - it was the 5th car in the line and I didn't feel like holding out for a Honda. It was an excellent choice!!

I hooked up my little GPS and headed out. Nicole had told me some directions when she left me, but I wasn't quite sure what she had said... I guess I am not the best listener... We called her and she repeated them for me. I made it to the rental house - not as quickly as she would have liked, but it was a new car in unfamiliar territory, I think I did pretty well. Just so you know, driving a van is like driving a living room on wheels. (I don't know how you people do it!)

The house she rented for us was very nice! John's parents were supposed to be there with us, but they got iced in in Seattle - all flights were canceled and tickets were refunded. This meant that we all had our own rooms - Mr. and I in the master suite and LLB next door upstairs. #1 and Gram and Grandpa in the rooms downstairs. It would have been nice if his parents had made it, but we really enjoyed the space.

We made our own little Christmas Tree:
You can't have Christmas without a tree!