Saturday, July 28, 2007

WE LIED!!!!!

We said we were NOT going to the County Fair this year. But, we did. Cindy W. called and offered four free passes. So, we decided, what the heck, let's go. So, we did. It was quite enjoyable. The "Mapapa African Acrobats" were the best. Emily, you would have loved watching them. One guy held up three guys all by himself. They jumped through hoops, looked like Olympic material for gymnastics, did amazing jump rope tricks (including jumping the rope SITTING down with his legs out straight). We saw a sea lion show (not as good as the acrobats, but fun anyway). We saw two Addisons, Theresa Robinson, several Duncans, Dick & Carol Davis (with Matt, Mindy and two children) and the Bengels (from PCS). After the fair, we decided to spend more money and went to Bob Evans to eat. Our waitress was Breanne Hunsley from FEBC. After Zachary ate his whole dinner, he finished up Tim's dinner. Then he asked for dessert, but we were freezing and decided to get some Sunday School stuff from WalMart and then get him dessert from Culvers (we had free coupons for there too). He ate the Culver's sundae and asked if he could get something to eat at home. Do you think he will be going through a growth spurt?

We are very tired. I guess free air and plenty of sunshine does that to you. Some of you GR people will be honored with our presence tomorrow. It will be good to see you all! Love you!

Friday, July 27, 2007


A teacher from PCS graciously gave Tim two free tickets to the White Sox game yesterday. They were playing the Tigers. They also received free parking right next to the stadium. Zachary was in seventh heaven. They had great weather, no rain. They didn't catch any foul balls, but they could have because they were in a great section of the park for that!

Here is a great shot of Tiger pitcher Verlander. Zachary was thrilled with this picture.

Here is one happy boy! He loved watching the game.

Had to have one of Dad for the record.

Elyse & I had a "girls afternoon." We went to the library and each got a video to watch. Elyse picked "Pippi Longstocking" and I picked "Miss Potter." You girls would really like "Miss Potter." It is definitely a chick flick. It was a nice relaxing afternoon for us.

Betsey went to the State Fair with Cassie & Jori. She had a good time. She brought us some sugared walnuts (yum-yum). We aren't going to the fair this year. It seems a waste of money since we don't do the rides. Paying all that money to look at free things isn't fun anymore. I guess I am getting old.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


We ended our vacation with a trip to Michigan to see all of our children (sounds like a soap opera). We went to the zoo with L & L's family. Then we spent Saturday with Emily (Dan was off to Florida). We played miniature golf and drove go carts (even the old people rode the go carts). Here is the gang getting ready to play miniature golf (I was the camera man - don't want to waste money on a game I don't care to play).

Isn't this flower gorgeous? If anyone knows the name of it, please tell me. I would love a yard full of them.

Tim says we can't have this water fall, but I think it would be a great asset to our boring yard.

Zachary was so excited to ride the go carts (his second time). He wanted #20, but it wasn't the first car. Oh well, he enjoyed the ride anyway.

Emily and Elyse rode a double car (Elyse didn't want to go alone). I am in the car to the right of them, but couldn't take a picture of myself.

It was fun seeing all the "adult" children. We had to wait until we got home to see Betsey. She is a crazy working woman.

Now all that awaits me is bills, laundry, house cleaning, getting ready for school and bills. Did I mention bills? Yep, lots of those. We had a wonderful time this summer. Next summer we will try something different for our vacation - hopefully, some of you can join us.

Friday, July 20, 2007


This is the "gang" in Erin's apartment. Zachary took the picture using a timer.

We went to the John Ball Zoo with L & L's family. Poor little Grace had to stay in the stroller most of the time due to her broken leg. She was a real trooper though. The following is a picture of a Wallaby - notice the babies leg sticking out of her pouch. It was awesome to see.

Do the boys look excited to be at the zoo? Even Caleb was yawning.

Zachary is playing on a wooden train in the Australian area.

Grace, Caleb & Elyse are playing in the wooden train. Grace was lifted into the train and kids had to walk over her.

Grace got her face painted.

Elyse also got her face painted. Without previous prompting, they both got the same picture.

Zachary liked taking pictures, here is one of his friends.

Well, the kids are in the hotel pool with Tim, and it is about time I relieved him. We will be heading home tomorrow.

Sunday, July 15, 2007


Today we went to the Smoky Mountains. After climbing the mountains, we hit a Wendy's. Then back to the motels so the kids could swim in the pool. Tim is watching them swim while I blog. The scenery on the mountain was amazing and the pictures don't do justice to the actual scene, but we tried.

Proof that we were there! The farther we went up, the cooler it got.

Even the old people got their picture taken. Dad is advertizing PCS.

Zachary loved climbing the rocks in the river that runs through the mountain.

Elyse like climbing the rocks until she fell and got all wet. Here she is drying off in the sun. Did I tell her that she should wear shorts, not a dress. Yep, I said that three times before we left the motel.

Elyse found a rock that looked like the ten commandments. She was so proud of it.

Well, I better go relieve Dad and watch the kids for awhile. Enjoy the few pictures we posted out of the 93 we took.

Saturday, July 14, 2007


If you have a weak stomach, please don't read on or look at the next picture (that means you, Emily). Last night we went to bed totally exhausted. I put my back out somehow, had my hand slammed in the cabin door, didn't sleep the night before, need I go on? Anyway, we went to bed. Around 3:00 a.m., Tim screamed out that something bit him. So, we turned on the lights and looked through the sheets - nothing. We went back to bed. Around 3:30, Tim screamed out again. I thought he had been married to me too long and was having visions like me only he "felt" his instead of "seeing" his visions. So, we turned on the lights and looked again - nothing! So, we went to bed. Around 4:30, I felt something on my leg. I swatted it and it bit me. So, I got up, woke Tim and turned on the lights to look again. NOTHING! Whatever! So, we went to bed. That morning we were supposed to pack up and leave, so I was pulling the sheets off the bed. Under MY pillow was the following:

Yep, it is a real scorpion. I thought they were only in the dessert - WRONG! I asked the owner and he said they had a few, but sprayed every week to keep them out of the cabins. Since we were in that cabin three weeks, he couldn't spray ours because it stinks so bad, we would have had to move. THANKS ALOT! Do our adventures ever end?

After we packed up we headed up I-75 to Athens, TN, to visit Mayfield's Ice Cream Factory (we went there last year and took the tour, this year we just wanted the ice cream). We got a SINGLE cone that was the size of a triple cone for $1.50 (they raised their prices 50 cents since last year). Elyse didn't drop hers this year, yeah! I guess she is growing up. This picture is of the kids on a cow outside of Mayfields. BTW, today we ate Krispy Kremes for breakfast, Mayfield's ice cream for lunch and haven't had dinner yet and it is 4:00 here. Can you tell we are on vacation and not worrying about healthy eating?

This is another cow outside of Mayfield's. It is HUGE!

We are now in Gatlinburg, TN, in the Smoky Mountains. No, we didn't have enough of the mountains, so we thought we would see more. We plan on seeing Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. The kids are swimming in the motel pool. Tim and I went for a few minutes. Tim is reading on the sidelines, I am blogging, and Elyse just came back in because she is hungry. What's new!?!

Miss all who read this mess. Love you!

Thursday, July 12, 2007


Today we decided to stay at the cabin and play and watch DVD's. I thought we needed to take a walk, so we headed out the door. Elyse decided to slam the door on my fingers. I saw stars. I turned all white and thought I was going to pass out. Great! No phone, no people around, scary thoughts. After 12 one inch cubes of ice, I was on my way for my walk. I think I might lose a fingernail in the healing process, we will see. Elyse is very concerned about me.

Elyse & Zachary went mountain climbing again today. Elyse came back with what she thought was an egg of some kind. I said it was a jelly bean and told her I would open it and prove it. So, I did. Messy liquid oozed out and something fell on the ground. I looked and it was a baby salamander. I guess you would say I am an abortionist. We have pictures, enjoy.

The poor thing on the gravel parking lot.

We put him in a cup so we could show Dad when he got back.

Here is the whole nest of eggs. They are only about 1/2 and inch long. Who would have thunk?

We saw Bridge to Terabithia on DVD - it was amazing. They used the "H" word once, and the "D" word twice, but otherwise, a GREAT movie. The kids loved it. Dad and I love it. It was really good - a must see!

We also saw
Ratatouille, another good movie for the kids. I thought it was stupid and Dad was bored, but Z & E loved it.

We will be leaving here on Saturday morning and heading to the Smoky Mountains, Mayfield Ice Cream plant, and Answer in Genesis Museum. We will be writing more often because we will have internet access and a phone. Boy, you don't realize what you have until it is gone.

Miss you all - Grace you get better quick, Gma says so!

Monday, July 09, 2007


Lacey - you would be proud of me, I read 9 books so far. I only have 5 more to go and I will have to hit a bookstore and pay full price. Boy, will I have a stack for you next month.

Emily - good job at your new job. I hate learning new jobs, they are frustrating. YOU CAN DO IT though.

Erin - Congrats on your accomplishments too. You scared me when you said you had an "announcement." Not this soon!

Betsey - where are you? I hope to connect to you personally tonight after I get finished with this blog and emails.

Here are the kids on the "mountain." Zachary is sliding down on his bottom. Luckily there weren't any sharp rocks sticking out. He could have been in pain. But (no pun intended), they are having a blast conquering whoever on this mountain.

This is the kids playing with silly string. It was fun, but it only lasts a few minutes.
The gravel parking lot is still covered with green and purple string. I hope the rain
takes it away soon. It looks awful!

Today we let the kids sleep in so Tim took the car to school himself. He came home lunch and we intended to take him back so we could have the car. Since we didn't know what to do with ourselves, we decided to stay at the cabin. Thus the "boring" part. We read, played with paper dolls (at least Elyse played, I cut all the clothes out that took over an hour), and Zachary entertained himself.

Luke - do you remember reading Hardy Boys books? Well, I found #66 at a used bookstore and paid $1 for it. Zachary (like you said long ago) that he didn't want to read it. I made him start it and read for 15 minutes. The next thing I knew, he was done with the book and wanted more. So, we will look for them at the Portage Library when we get home. Funny, he think like you!

Tomorrow, Tuesday, we will head to the Children's Museum. We went twice last year and the kids loved it. It is supposed to rain all day, so an inside activity sounds like a good plan. Will update the next time I have this computer. Love to all!

Thursday, July 05, 2007


We came home from picking up Tim and the cabin smelled horrible. I thought it was the garbage, so I had the kids take it to the trash bin down the hill. But, we still stunk. So, I moved the frig and washed the floor. We still stink! So, we went to bed thinking it was the septic tank and we would talk to the owners tomorrow and let them know.

The next day the owner came to check it out. Under the cabin is a crawl space where the water heater and plumbing is located. There was the smell. A picture to follow:

Zachary is afraid you can't figure out what the smell was - it was a dead cat! No telling how it got in there and what it died of (probably starved to death).

The kids met some neighbors. One family has seven kids, the other family has three. Tim and I decided to take a walk and there were 11 kids playing on the mountain. I should have taken a picture, but I forgot.

Nothing happened today - just grocery shopping, etc. Will post again when we have something more newsworthy to say.

Monday, July 02, 2007


Z & E met a new friend, isn't he cute? Actually, Elyse was scared to
even stand next to him for a picture.

Dan-O, this is for you! On one side is Abraham Lincoln as King, and the
other side is Jefferson Davis as King. I would have bought it for you, but
it cost $400 (are you worth that much?).

This house is for sale. It is on the top of Lookout Mountain. Do you think we
would fit?

Not sure you can tell what this is or not. It is called a "Leaf Fish." The actual
body is in the middle (almost like a seahorse), but it is covered with things that
look like leaves. Isn't God amazing in His camouflage?

These fish are actually over my head. I am under the tank. We could be
on the side, top or under each fish tank. Scary!

Z & E are INSIDE the fish tank (actually a tube that runs up the middle
of the tank). It was so cool looking from my side of the tank.

This is a stingray that I was able to touch. It feels like a slimy piece of
rubber. Z & E were too chicken to touch it. After you touch them, there is a
huge whale made out of wood that you can stick your arm in to dry you off.
How cool is that?

So, the gist is: we are having a blast. Dad is enjoying his classes very much. We love the cabin - much better than sleeping on the floor as we did last year. Last night we had some rowdy neighbors at the cabin. They stayed on their deck, with their porch light shining in my eyes until midnight. Made sleeping a little hard for me. Tonight I am putting a beach towel over the window. That will cure the light. The noise...will have to be covered by the air conditioner which is horribly loud!

Will update another time. See Luke and Lacey's blog for updates on Grace's broken leg. Such a sweetheart! Still smiling!