Friday, September 21, 2007

Happy Birthday Sweetie!!!!!!!!!!!

Yesterday my honey turned thirty-something. I would post his age but I'm sure he wouldn't be too thrilled with me. I don't know why because I think he looks good for his age! I tease him that I would leave him for George Clooney but in all honesty, George doesn't come close my guy!

I tried to make his birthday special but I think I failed. First, his gift that I ordered didn't come in time. I did make him a nice dinner of pork roast with baby portabella mushroom gravy in the crock pot, mashed redskin potatoes and green & yellow beans with baby carrots.
However, he couldn't enjoy it because we had to eat it in a hurry so we could go pick up Allison's school work from one of her classmates. She's been out sick for two days so I had the teacher send it home. I don't want her to get behind. After picking up her school work, we went to the vet's office to pick up Princess from being declawed and spayed. We then rushed home and he sat at the kitchen table for the next 2 1/2 hours with Allison doing about 30 school papers! We then sang a quick happy birthday and presented him with his cake that Allison and I baked for him and she sprinkled and sprinkled and sprinkled!
He then read her a story and tucked her into bed. He came downstairs and had a piece of birthday cake. Since Allison has been sick, I had not been able to do my normal Wednesday errands which included picking up a birthday gift for a birthday party that Allison was invited to tonight. So off he went to Wal-Mart to get a gift for the little boy. What a guy! George wouldn't have done all that!

I love you honey! I'm sorry your birthday wasn't all that you deserve. I hope we share many more of your birthdays together. I promise you they will be better!

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Sunday, September 16, 2007

An Opportunity of a Lifetime!

My niece, Stephanie (actually my best friend's daughter) is in Oxford, England for the first 3 months of her college sophomore year on an exchange program. How WONDERFUL is that? I just finished a blog header for her from her pictures and they are simply gorgeous. Here she is in front of her favorite building so far. It's the Radcliffe Camera. She is having an amazing time! I just talked to her on the phone and she sounds great! She is loving every minute of it! She is picking up the lingo and I'm afraid by the time she comes back home, we'll all be talking that way too. She is keeping us all updated on her blog which is over there to the right. ---> Feel free to stop by and visit her on her journey. Make sure you click on the archive posts starting with September and you'll get to see her whole trip so far. Don't forget to say hello to her from the states too!

I was looking at the pictures the other day with Allison and she said that when she goes to college she is going to study in England too! LOL! I told her that we had to get her through 1st grade first! I love how they think!

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Saturday, September 15, 2007

A "Fun" Find!

If you have read my blog before, you probably already know that I LOVE Family Fun magazine. If you look over there ------> you'll see I have a link to their website. In fact, it is the only magazine I am renewing each year. I just don't have the time to sit and look at a magazine anymore...but I find the time for Family Fun. It is filled with good idea after good idea to do with your child, children or your family. I just received October's issue yesterday and I already have 6 articles dog eared! The one I want to share with all of you is the one on page 125. It's "The Ultimate Family Cookbook" article. This is something I have always wanted to do. I want to compile all of my favorite recipes along with family recipes in a cookbook. I want to do this for Allison. I think I have mentioned before that my Ba Ba made awesome rolls. I still remember them and it will be 30 years next Spring since she's been gone. Her recipe was never written down or taught to anyone. I think my Mom tried to get it from her once and her measurements were "a handful of this or a handful of that." Okay, WHOSE handful are we talking here? Anyway, my plan was to scrapbook all the recipes I wanted to pass down. Ya right! Let's face it here. I am behind in my scrapbooking and I just can't take on another project. Thank you Family Fun magazine for the answer. This isn't my ideal option for a cookbook for Allison but it is a GREAT alternative. They have joined forces with to offer three recipe templates...each with three backgrounds. This gives us lots of options! There are even two page options for those long recipes. You also can add pictures and there is a little space in the bottom for a little journaling on anything you want to share about the recipe. I did one and it took me 10 minutes! I can't do a scrapbook page in 10 minutes!!! The one I did is below and I printed it out and it came out awesome! My plan is to take pictures when I make the recipe and then do the page that night. Hopefully by the end of the year, I'll have all of my recipes completed and I'll just need to add new ones as I find them. If you are interested, the site is .

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Thanks & a Mini Weekend Vacation!

Thank you to everyone that has prayed for us. It has really meant the world to me to know that we have such wonderful family and friends. Not a whole lot has changed regarding the issue so please keep sending up prayers and good thoughts. We are taking it one day at a time.

Just under a month ago and before school started, we decided to take a mini weekend vacation. Allison wanted to pick up sea shells on the beach. I looked into Ocean City, Maryland but the 7 1/2 hour drive one way would be spending too much time in the van and also make Curtis and I tired with all the driving. So we opted for Lake Erie on the Ohio side. I found an adorable 2 bedroom cottage in Port Clinton. It was the perfect central location for everything we wanted to do! We had a wonderful time. So relaxing and fun! Who would of thought when we planned this mini get-a-way that we would need it so much with all the school stuff going on. It turned out to be the perfect time away.

Here is our weekend in pictures. Remember, you can click on any of them to enlarge them and click on the links to see more about the places. Since there are so many, I'll try to keep my narration to a minimum.

We kept Allison busy with her VTech Nitro Notebook on the way to Port Clinton, Ohio. We picked her up from school on Friday and left from there.
We are getting close! That's Sandusky Bay out the window!
Wooo Hooo! 1 more mile!
Sheryl & Bob (the owners of the cottage where we stayed) suggested Dock's Beach House for dinner. It was awesome! I had Blackened Seafood Cakes which were crab, shrimp and grouper. They were amazing! Here's Allison enjoying her Shirley Temple on the patio deck. It was so dark out you really couldn't see the lake but you could hear the waves.
Allison was a Daddy's girl most of the weekend. Mommy didn't like it!
After dinner we went down to the beach so she could see the lake. This is the first pic when she looked at the lake. She was so happy!
She didn't hesitate at all! She started kicking the water around!
Oh to be six!
Still smiling when we went back to the cottage. She was excited that she got a double bed and had room for all of her friends!
Here's the cottage. It's called Ginger's Cottage and was perfect! Click on the link for pictures of the inside. Sheryl and Bob had everything we needed. It is so nice to have a washer and dryer on vacation. I brought everything home clean! Thanks Nancy for the idea!
Cuddle time with Daddy! Mommy didn't like it!
Saturday morning we got up early so we could tour Marblehead Lighthouse. They give tours the second Saturday of the months through October so this was one of the reasons we picked this weekend. YES! We climbed all 77 spiral metal steps. VERY scary for Mommy! You could see through the steps to the bottom!
This pic is of us on top of the lighthouse. It was very windy up there and they told us to hang on to Allison. Can you see we wouldn't let go of her? The volunteer took the picture and besides cutting off the top of Curtis' head, it's a good pic.
Next we went to Mystery Hill and Prehistoric Forest in Marblehead. The table in this pic is level but you can not stand on it standing straight up. The house is on a hill but the table isn't. Odd isn't it?
This is one pic of Prehistoric Forest. Allison was obsessed! She made me take a picture of every dinosaur!
Digging for fossils in Prehistoric Forest.
We had a quick lunch at Diana's Deli between Marblehead and Port Clinton. The food was excellent. Curtis and I both had the BLT and it was probably the best one I have ever had. The service was a little lacking. They were busy and our waitress kind of threw our drinks and food at us. She dropped Curtis' coffee off as she was passing by. He didn't even notice she had set it down! A little friendliness and less rushing would have gone a long way with us.

After our lunch, we went and rode the Jet Express to Put-in-Bay. It goes about 40 MPH and we were passing little boats on the lake. So fun!
I love this pic of Allison!
Here's my baby rock climbing! It scares me that this little girl has no fear! Notice Curtis down below ready to catch her!A close up!
This is Perry's Cave. The stalactites aren't very big from the ceiling of the cave. They take hundreds of years to form and in the 1950's, they let tourists break them off and take them for souveniers. What were they thinking?
Also with Perry's Cave is the Butterfly House. There were over 700 butterflies in the house! There were so many beautiful ones but I'll share only one pic with you.
At Perry's Cave, you can mine for gems. We ended up buying a second large bag of dirt because we had so much fun mining with the first one.
Allison and Daddy enjoying a smoothie and latte from the Chocolate Cafe. We rented a golf cart on Put-in-Bay to get around and Allison loved sitting on the back watching everything.
We took the main street all the way to the end of the island to see what was there. The white shoreline you see in the pic is zillions of broken teenie tiny shells.
Curtis wasn't happy until he found a snake under a rock for Allison. This is a Lake Erie Watersnake.
Allison wasn't happy until she got to touch the snake! Of course prior to taking these photos I was running away from them screaming "OH MY GOODNESS!" over and over again!
Allison riding Kimberly's Carousel on Put-in-Bay.
A fun sign on Put-in-Bay.
This is my new favorite pic of my two favorite people. Doesn't she look so happy and pretty here? Doesn't he look handsome? This was taken at The Boardwalk restaurant. Awesome food and service!
They are known for their lobster bisque and boy was it awesome! I just got a cup to try it and Miss Allison loved it! Maybe I should have gotten the bowl!
Another family pic at The Boardwalk.
Allison picked out this pink snake at a gift shop so it can remind her of touching a snake with her Dad on the beach. Weird kid! She had to pose for a picture on the Jet Express back to Port Clinton with her new friend. We got to ride the upper deck on the way back. It was so much fun!
Sunday morning we got up and headed to East Harbor State Park so Allison could hunt for shells. She had a blast running in the water. I didn't expect her to get so wet. I didn't have any extra clothes for her in the van. I ended up stripping her and wrapping her in a beach towel and buckled her into her booster seat. When Curtis took her out of the van back at the cottage, she told him to make sure the towel covered her. She didn't want anyone seeing her "cute baby butt!" Oye! The things kids say!
Searching for shells!
She would have stayed there all day if we let her but it started to rain so we went back to the cottage to load the van and go to lunch. We had lunch at Jolly Roger's Seafood House in Port Clinton. It was voted by Costal Living Magazine as the Best Seafood Dive. I can see why. It was a great lunch.
After packing the van and having lunch, we had one more attraction that we wanted to go to before we hit the road home. It was raining a little and we almost skipped it but decided to go ahead and see if we could do it in the rain. Thankfully the rain stopped after a little and it ended up being one of my favorite things to do of the whole weekend! We went to the African Safari Wildlife Park in Port Clinton. I don't think I ever laughed so hard in my life! I almost tinkled! I drove because I wanted to take the pics. Allison sat in Curtis' lap and the both of them fed the animals pellets and carrots. Let me tell you the animals are NOT shy! They see a vehicle coming and they come running. They are a little overwhelming at first. I guess I didn't expect them to put their heads right in the van! The elks are VERY aggressive and grabbed the whole cup of food right out of Curtis' hand. Curtis tried to not let him have it but even the strong body building Curtis was no match for the elk!
Move animal friends!
This alpaca wanted me to open my window but I wasn't budging! I think he needs a haircut!
This was the little buffalo/bison that had his head in the window! The other bigger one decided he would come on my side and then stick out his very long huge tongue and try to get food from Allison!
The giraffe was behind a fence and his markings were just beautiful!
Mr. Zebra was a little agressive when Curtis tried to feed him from the cup so he put the window up a little so Allison could feed him a carrot.
I'll be cleaning pellets out of my van for weeks. When they grab the food they really GRAB it!
This is an African wild cat. Kind of looks like Princess, doesn't it? It even makes the same rolling sound down in it's throat like Princess does!
Allison got to ride a camel!
We also got to sit in on an animal show. They had several animal friends from around the world to share with us. The last one came from Burma...and YES, it was a Burmese Python! Allison was thrilled! I wasn't! After the presentation, they asked if anyone wanted to touch or hold it and my very brave little daughter jumped to her feet with her hand in the air and shouted "I DO!" She was the first in line! UGH! You'll probably be surprised to hear this but I even touched it! It had just shed it's skin so they said it was very soft. It feels like the texture and smoothness of a basketball. And NO, I will not be holding one anytime soon!
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