Saturday, March 29, 2008

Grace's Daisy Build-A-Bear Trip

Grace's Girl Scout Daisy Troop voted on what to do and where to go with the money that they made for the their troop from their Girl Scout Cookie sales and they voted to go to Raleigh to Build-A-Bear. So, we got up early today and met everyone at the Girl Scout Huts and headed to Raleigh where the nearest Build-A-Bear is located. The girls got to select an animal of their choice and stuff it and fluff it and do all the fun things that you do at Build-A-Bear and then pick out one outfit to dress their animal in. They had so much fun. Grace chose an adorable brown bunny rabbit and a cute little sundress. Afterwards, we all had lunch together before heading back to Jacksonville.

Monday, March 24, 2008


Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday at the Hanley's

We went to Virginia over the Easter weekend and stayed with our friends, Lisa & Tommy Hanley. We went to our favorite Indian restaurant, Nawab, and had a couple of Easter egg hunts with the kids. We were also able to visit with our good friends Chris and Angela on Saturday afternoon. On Sunday, we all went to Waters Edge Church for Easter services. They had a huge crowd and in between the two services they had an "Egg Drop" instead of an Easter Egg Hunt. We all went outside and they had the kids divided into age groups and a helicopter flew over head and dropped 20,000 eggs on to a field and the kids all got to go after them. Dave was with Zachary so he got several eggs. It was a little overwhelming for Grace but I think they both enjoyed seeing the helicopter dropping the eggs.

Easter Egg Hunt on Sunday afternoon

Grace obviously got some lip gloss in her Easter basket

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Ok, call us crazy but the first day we are back home from Disney World we go to Sam's Club and buy a playset for the kids. We had shopped around for them before our Disney trip and had decided to get the one at Sam's. It looked really nice and seemed like you got the most for your money. So, on Sunday afternoon, we loaded up the kids and took both the Grand Cherokee and the Tahoe to Sam's to purchase the playset. The playset came in 5 boxes plus the slide. We were only able to get one box in Dave's car and one box and the slide in the Tahoe. We were a site to see. Our neighbor took pity on us when we got home and he saw me trying to help Dave unload it, so he came over and helped Dave and also loaned us his truck to go and pick up the remaining pieces.

Dave was on leave all of that week and had big plans of enjoying the week and getting a couple of rounds of golf in. The diections in the playset said that it took 2 moderately skilled people 20-24 hours to build the playset. We started working on it on Monday morning and worked all day long till about 6:45 that night. We hit it again on Tuesday and again on Wednesday. After 3 very FULL days of working on it, it was still not complete. Dave thought he would get it finished in a couple of hours on Thursday morning but ended up running into a couple of snags which slowed him down. Apparently we are not "moderately skilled people".

To make a very long story short, we worked all week long on building the playset. Dave did not get to even play one game of golf. And when we got down to the very last step, we did not have the screws that were needed as the "moderately skilled" people who packed the hardware in the boxes had shorted us on 2 inch lag screws.

So, the kids have a beautiful, nicely built, nearly finished playset to entertain themselves in the backyard.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

We Have a Published Author in the Family

I am so proud of Grace and am amazed at what all they do in her school. She is in kindergarten in a multi-age class of kindergartners and first graders. Each afternoon, they have writing time where they write in journals. At first it was hard for Grace but as the year has progressed, so has she. She loves to write stories and has written some very good and funny ones.

Her school, Johnson Primary School, has something called a "Writer's Cafe" and each child at some point during the year gets to write and publish a book. Grace worked on her story in her class, then went to the Writer's Cafe and worked on typing it on the computer and drawing the pictures for it. Then it is published in a bound hard back book. It is written and illustrated by the student and even has a dedication. On the last page is a picture of the author with a little paragraph about them. Twice a month, they have an Authors' Celebration where the principle presents the children with their published books in front of family and friends.

Yesterday Dave, Zachary and I were all able to go to the celebration where Grace was presented with her book and we were so proud of her!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Disney World

We celebrated Dave's homecoming by going to Disney World February 24 - 29. We had so much fun and got to hook up and visit with some good friends also. We drove down on Saturday the 23rd and stopped in Jacksonville, FL and spent the night. Our good friends, Lou Anne and Walt East who we knew in VA, now live in Jacksonville. They had us over the next morning for a delicious breakfast and we were able to visit with them for several hours.

We then headed on to Disney World and met up with our good friends, Lisa, Tommy and Katie Hanley from Hampton, VA at Wolfgang Pucks at Downtwon Disney for dinner. They knew we had a Disney trip planned and decided to come down for a couple of days. It was really good to see them. Dave had not seen them since we moved from VA in July. We also were able to spend a day with them at Magic Kingdom before they headed home.

It was a great trip with beautiful weather except for one night which rained cats and dogs and we just bought Disney ponchos and went with it.

The last day of our trip was my favorite. I've always wanted to go to Epcot and go to the World Showcase and just sample different foods from all the different countries. We've never done this before as we usually go somewhere and eat and then are too full to go around and sample. Well, since we are DVC members, we usually purchase the Disney Dining plan which gives you so many snacks, counter service and sit down meals per day per person. Well, Dave was afraid that we would be short some snacks or counter service meals so in the beginning he was paying for our food instead of using the Dining plan. So, on the day that we checked out of the resort and were to head home, we had several snacks left and 7 counter service meals! Of course I had to tell him, "I told you so" but it actually worked out really well. Our dining plan didn't expire till midnight so we went to Epcot and did exactly what I've always wanted to do. We just strolled through the different countries and sampled. We all shared a delicious combinaton plate in Mexico, orange chicken in China, schwarma & hummus in Moroco, fish and chips in England, ham & cheese crescent and chocolate crepe in France and I'm sure there were more that I'm just not remembering. It was so nice though and it turned out to be both Dave's and my favorite day.
Needless to say, we got a late start home and only made it to Jacksonville, FL that day but safely got home the following day. And we are already planning our next trip to Disney in December with all of my family!

Cars Cars Cars

Now that Dave is back home, we were able to paint and fix up Zachary's room. I had most of the house painted while he was gone but he wanted to help do Zachary's room so we waited until he got home from Iraq. Zachary was so ready for his room to be painted but he waited very patiently. He loves the Disney Pixar movie Cars and I found some really cute bedding so that is the theme we went with. Dave wanted to do something really bold and fun. I wasn't too sure about it all but I agreed to let him do what he wanted and it turned out great! We painted the walls a brick red, blue and a burnt orange and we put up a border of tire tracks to divide the colors. Dave did a great job painting and it looks great. We've still got a poster and some prints to hang but Zachary loves his new room. He thinks it's cool!