Wednesday, May 28, 2008

YES! We are alive!

Yes, we are still around! Life has been absolutely CRAZY the past two weeks! It all started when we left for Massachusetts Saturday, May 17th. Andy was asked to speak at a church, North New Salem Congregational Church, up there and we decided to make it into a family vacation. We traveled up to MA, a six hour drive, and the kids did great! I was really concerned with how Daniel would manage the long drive, but he was incredible! We really didn't hear a peep from him! I have to say that the blessing of a car DVD player REALLY helped! That and Backyardigans! Though he also chose to watch "Touille" (pronounced too-ee) or Ratatouille, much to Matt and Sarah's relief!

Andy did an incredible job speaking at the church and the people were wonderful! I LOVE New England and their easy going ways! After church we went to a dear friend of Andy's mom, Brenda Buck. What a sweet woman of God! I can so see why Lois loves her! They have very similar likes - including gardening. We spent the afternoon there and the lids loved her! Matt and Sarah even stayed with her while Andy and I checked out a wonderful store called Country Mischief. Like I said, I love New England and this store was the epitome of New England! After saying good-bye around 5:00 PM we headed over to Old Sturbridge Village. Monday morning we headed over to the village. It was so cold! But at least the rain held off until later in the afternoon. We had a great time exploring what life was like in the 1830's. The kids had fun dipping candles and petting lambs! I loved seeing the one room school house and talking with the "teacher". Did you know that their school terms were May-August and then December-March? I thought maybe we should adopt the same schedule - the kids didn't think to highly of that!
Being put to work by the local farmers! They were so much fun to listen to!
Daniel found these blocks in one of the Sturbridge houses and decided he needed to play! He spent more than 15 minutes with them!
After spending the day, we headed over to our hotel in West Yarmouth, which is about 40 minutes out of Plymouth, MA. We also met Andy's parents in Plymouth Tuesday morning. We spent Tuesday and Wednesday at Plimoth Plantation. Both days were chilly, but at least Wednesday turned out to be beautiful and sunny. It was fun to compare life in the 1620's to life in the 1830's! I love talking with the women that portray people from their time. They always give you a little insight as to what life for them may have been like. I have to say that in both time periods woman had their way of getting what they wanted - either by refusing to cook in the 1830's or not cooking what the husband liked in the 1620's! Either way, my poor husband would have starved being the stubborn red-head I am and not knowing how to do half the cooking they did back then! I guess I would have learned more back then, though!

Plimoth Plantation Armory. Daniel LOVED the cannons - he thought they were jungle gyms!

Matt and Sarah in front of Plymouth Rock! It was closed for renovations! Can you believe it!?!?

Wednesday afternoon we headed over to Mystic, CT. We went to downtown Mystic where we were told there was a boardwalk with stores to look through. Well, there was one store and the boardwalk wasn't like we were used to. It is a cute little town, though. We even saw the drawbridge go up to allow a boat to go through. The hotel we stayed at had a great pool, so the kids were able to enjoy themselves a bit before heading off to bed.

On our last day of vacation the weather proved to be more dreadful than the other days. It was cold, cloudy, and had the threat of rain. But we headed over to the Mystic Aquarium and loved every minute! Lois' birthday had been on Monday and Andy and I decided to treat her to a Buluga Whale Experience as a combined birthday/ Mother's Day gift. As long as I can remember Lois has LOVED buluga whales. I can remember back in '90, when Andy was in Israel, John and Lois took me on a trip for Fall Break and we went to the Mystic Aquarium so we could see the buluga whales. Well, she had an incredible time being able to touch and talk with Naku - her buluga whale! She was the only one scheduled for an experience so she was able to do everything and not have to share! We were so happy for her! The kids loved watching her and told me when I am her age they'll treat me to an experience! They are so funny!

While at the aquarium we were also able to feed the Birds of the Outback. There were about 350 birds in a large cage and we were handed popsicle sticks with bird feed glued to them. The birds swarmed all around! At one point Lois had them hanging off her arms, looking in her sleeves, and even on her head! It was great! Then the torential rains came! At one point the lights even went out in the aquarium area! It was a huge storm, but the clouds finally moved and we enjoyed the rest of the day. We left around 5:30 PM and after a stop or two finally got home around 11:00 PM. It was a busy week, but we had a great time!

Friday and Saturday were spent trying to get two portfolio's together. This was my first year doing two - and I hadn't anticipated the number of hours it would take to get them together. I was up until 5:00 AM Saturday morning and 4:00 AM Sunday morning. Sunday, late afternoon, we headed to my mom's house to spend a couple of hours before heading up to Andy's parents. Monday was the semi-annual (depending on the weather!) Memorial Day picnic. I was able to spend some time with my good friend Kelly, who I haven't seen in months! It was so good to talk with her. Our girls, Sarah and Morgan, were born a day apart! I often wished I lived closer to her as Sarah and Morgan play so well together and really enjoy each other's company. I am hoping we can get together a couple of times throughout the summer.

After staying up until 5:00 AM Tuesday morning to put finishing touches on the portfolio's, the kids evaluations were at 3:00 PM on Tuesday. I now have 6th and 4th graders living in my house! How did they get so big so fast? They did well with their evaluations and I am glad it's DONE! Now I only have to turn them into their proper schools and I can start working on next year!

So where are we today? We are currently at Great Wolf Lodge in Pocono, PA! My mom treated the kids (and us!) to a night as an end of the school year gift! The kids spent 5 hours sliding, jumping and swimming in the water. It is a fantastic place! And the room is great! We are staying in a Kid Cabin Suite and it is wonderful! All the kids have their own beds - so no having to share! I love Daniel to death, but he has the boniest knees! We are planning on spending the day here tomorrow and heading home sometime late in the afternoon. Then we will be home from all our travels! This has been a whirlwind month and though I have had a great time I will be glad to be home! I think the kids will be, too!

1 comment:

The four little penguins say: said...

What a fun vacation! Daniel is a great name for a kid. lol