Sunday, November 30, 2008

Finally, We Arrive at Disney

It's 11:49 pm and we just pulled in to the Old Key West resort at Disney. What was supposed to be a 12 hour drive took 15 1/2 hours! It rained pretty much the entire way and traffic was terrible. At one point this afternoon it took 2 hours just to go 25 miles.

I'm just ready to get checked in and unloaded so I can crawl in the bed.

Posted by ShoZu

On Our Way to Disney

Well, we finally got on the road heading for Disney World. We were aiming to leave at 5:00 this morning which I thought would be more like 7:00. But in fact we didn't pull out of the driveway until about 8:15. We just couldn't break the Williams' mold of leaving home much later than planned.

Posted by ShoZu

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday

OK, call me crazy but I was one of those people that got up during the middle of the night to go Black Friday shopping. Lara, Rebecca and Chris Reiffer went with me. We left home at 4:30 am and went to the Exchange here on base. They were opening at 5 am and when we got there at 4:45, the line was from the front door, all the way down to the liquor store and people kept lining up behind us. When the doors were opened, everyone took off and made their way to whatever area they were wanting to shop in, which was mostly electronics. I can't say what I was shopping for because Grace is sitting here with me as I am writing this and I don't want her to know what she is getting for her birthday. Needless to say, I got what I wanted so it was worth getting up at 4:30 am for. It was also a successful trip for Lara, Rebecca and Chris.

The only thing is that they probably got to come home and go back to bed where I had to get ready for the pictures that we were going to have made but had to reschedule because Zachary got sick.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Zachary' at the Doctors Office Again

We woke up this morning to Zachary crying, coughing, snotty and then he threw up. We cancelled the pictures that we had scheduled for that morning after we had already rescheduled them from the morning before because Zachary wouldn't open his eyes because of the cornea scratch. He slept most of the morning and then I took him to the doctor. He has another infection. I guess it was just all the drainage that made him throw up. This picture was taken in the waiting room of the doctor's office. So now, not only do we have to put drops in his eyes, he has to take yucky antibiotics for the ear infection. What a fun few days this has been.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving Day

We are truly blessed with good friends and neighbors. We spent Thanksgiving at Rebecca and Travis Provost's house along with our friends, Lara and Glen Braithwaite and Teri Hawley and their families. Teri cooked and stuffed the turkey and we each brought traditional family dishes and we had a huge spread of delicious Thanksgiving foods. It was such a nice afternoon of good food, good friendship and good fun. The kids all had a great time playing with one another and we ended up sitting around the fire pit later that night.

Travis Provost taking their delicious Dunbar out of the oven

Teri Hawley stuffing the turkey

Dave got the honor of carving the turkey

Dave's Dad (Papa) spent Thanksgiving with us

Thank you so much Rebecca and Travis for opening your home to us and sharing Thanksgiving with our family!Rebecca and Travis Provost

Glen and Lara Braithwaite

The Mess!

Update on Zachary

Zachary would still not open his eyes this morning. I think more because he was afraid that it would hurt rather than it actually hurting. He finally let us put the necessary drops in, we ate breakfast and then we turned on the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. It was sometime when the parade was on that he decided to try and open his eyes. Grace came upstairs to get me so that I could see. She was so excited. It's still red and swollen but hopefully he is on the mend.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Ready for a New Day

Dave's Dad gave us a scare tonight. Don is here visiting this week and right before dinner, he said that he wasn't feeling well. He had shortness of breath and just didn't feel right and thought he needed to get checked out. Dave took him to the Onslow County Emergency Room where they admitted him for tests. They were very thorough and and ran all kinds of tests, x-rays, EKGs and blood work. Dave and I were text messaging back and forth and he was keeping me updated on what was going on. Dave sent me this picture.

Then a little after 10 pm, Sharon called. She had tried to reach Don on his cell phone and was not able to. Her mother, Birdie, passed away tonight. Sharon and Rebecca had just seen her this morning and they knew she wasn't doing well. Birdie got to see all three of her children this week and I think that after she saw Sharon and Rebecca, she decided it was time to let go. She had a warm, loving heart and a generous soul. She had the rare and unique ability to wrap her love around everyone she met. She will be greatly missed but there is some consolation knowing that she lived a very full and good life.

Dave and Don arrived back home around 11:30 pm. Fortunately, everything seemed okay with Don except that he has high blood pressure.

This has been a long, tiring, stressful and sad day.

What a Day

Last night Zachary got something in his eye. We flushed it with water and never saw anything but he screamed bloody murder. He eventually fell asleep and I was hoping that he would wake up this morning and be fine. But that didn't happen. He still said it hurt and refused to open his eye. I took him to the doctor and he first thought it was pink eye but when he looked at his eye through a special light, he did see something on his cornea. He referred us to an optometrist and we got an appointment there at 1:00 this afternoon. They did not find anything in his eye, but his cornea is scratched. They gave us two different kinds of eye drops and said that corneas heal quickly and he should start feeling better tomorrow. He has kept both eyes closed all day and slept most if the afternoon. I feel so bad for him.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Stuff the Turkey

Zachary and his Panda class at JPS "stuffed a turkey" yesterday. They are learning how to take turns, cheer on their teammates, and congratulate the winners with a HIP-HIP-HOORAY!! The team that did not win was also congratulated for giving it their “ALL” and was reminded that maybe there will be “BETTER LUCK NEXT TIME.”

Monday, November 24, 2008


My friend, Lara, and I went to see Twilight yesterday. I didn't feel the need to fight the crowd of teenage girls on Friday night but was definitely looking forward to seeing it. We were not disappointed. I think I went in to it expecting to be disappointed so I was pleasantly surprised that it was as good as it was. When I first heard who had been cast as Edward, I did not think that it was a good fit at all but Robert Pattinson actually did a really good job and he grew on me as Edward.

This is definitely a movie that I would like to have and now I have to get my own set of the books. I've been borrowing Lara's to read but this series is kind of like Harry Potter in that you want your own set of the books to keep.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Please say a Prayer for my Sister and her Family

My parents called me on Friday afternoon and told me that my brother-in-law, Mark, was layed off from his job that morning. He had absolutely no idea that it was going to happen and it was effective immediately. Because he had only been there about a year and a half, he was only given 4 weeks severance pay. He started contacting people and headhunters and searching for a job on Friday but it is going to be tough right here at the holidays. They had been planning on going to Disney with us the first week of December but cannot justify spending the money now that this has happened. Everyone please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

Here is an article that I found about the layoff:

Solutia Inc. on Friday laid off 128 workers at its Decatur plant. The company is classifying 38 of the layoffs -- including 18 Solutia employees and 20 contract employees -- as permanent.

The company said the job loss for the other 90 workers -- including 48 Solutia employees and 42 contract employees -- is temporary.

Plant Manager Al Faulkner said Friday the company expects to call back the temporarily laid-off workers in about six weeks.

The layoffs take effect immediately, said Solutia spokesman Dan Jenkins.

'No good time' for layoffs

Jenkins said delaying the layoffs until after the holidays "would not have been the right business decision. There's no good time to announce something like this."

Before the layoff, the plant had 235 employees and 128 contract workers.

Six of the permanent layoffs involve salaried employees, Faulkner said. Eleven of the temporary layoffs are salaried.

The company previously announced it "is exploring strategic alternatives" for the nylon business, including its sale. It has said it would dispose of the business by the end of March.

Faulkner and other managers met with laid-off employees individually or in small groups Friday, Faulkner said.

"The employees are very understanding," Faulkner said. "We have very bright employees, and they see what's in the news and what's going on in the worldwide economy. They are aware and educated enough to know that things like this happen when the economy goes bad."

The permanent job losses are part of Solutia's effort to restructure the unprofitable nylon business. The company cut 10 percent, or $40 million, of its annualized fixed costs across the nylon business.

The temporary layoffs are a response to a dramatic drop in demand for nylon that began in late September.

The Decatur facility produces an intermediate chemical used in nylon fiber and nylon plastic. Most of the fiber goes into carpet. That part of the business has been dropping for years, especially since housing sales began to drop in late 2006.

The nylon plastics business, however, had been growing until the national economic crisis became acute. Much of the nylon plastic is used for under-the-hood parts in new cars. Car manufacturers have cut production in response to plummeting sales.

"In September, we were, by and large, running our nylon plants flat-out," said Jenkins. "At that time our forecast for the fourth quarter was for continued strong demand. As a result, we had pretty significant inventory built up. In the last six weeks or so, that demand has gone down significantly."

Faulkner said Solutia is selling from inventory, which he believes will run out -- requiring more production -- in early 2009.

"The precipitous decline has flattened," Faulkner said. "We're feeling as though we're reaching the lowest ebb of customer orders. We anticipate that will slowly start to climb. I believe the economy will begin to rebound, and we'll begin a sustained recovery, in 2009."

If Solutia's sales projections are overly optimistic, the anticipated duration of the furlough for temporarily laid off employees could change.

"While we believe it is temporary and they will be brought back," Jenkins said, "if that situation were to change we would communicate to them."

Solutia is paying severance to permanently laid-off employees. The temporarily laid-off employees can continue their benefits, but their only wage continuation will be through unemployment compensation.

The maximum weekly unemployment compensation in the state is $255, with a maximum duration of 39 weeks.

Solutia entered a reorganization bankruptcy in 2003. It shut down its Acrilan plant in Decatur in April 2005, laying off two-thirds of its employees.

Solutia exited bankruptcy in February after litigation over $1.2 billion in exit financing. To keep the financing, it had to agree to higher than expected interest rates.

In July, Solutia announced it wanted to sell the nylon business.

Overall, Solutia laid off 1,600 workers Friday. About 60 percent of the affected workers are contractors. Solutia considers about 900 of the layoffs to be temporary.

Before the layoff, Solutia had 6,000 employees and 2,000 contractors.

JPS Family Night

We had our monthly family night at Johnson Primary School on Friday, November 21st. It was a Christmas themed night with different stations where the kids could go around and write letters to Santa, make Christmas ornaments, decorate cookies and play games. We had a huge turnout and everyone had a great time. Santa was even there so the kids could actually give him their letters that they wrote telling him what they wanted for Christmas.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thanksgiving Feast

Grace's class had a Thanksgiving Celebration and Feast today. They made pilgrim hats and collars, pumpkin pies, turkey cookies and crafts. They all had fun and I had a great time helping out. This afternoon, they actually got to sit down and share with the class what they were thankful for and then enjoy their feast.

Grace with her best friend, Reagan

Mrs. Flott and Mrs. Adams

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Day in Beaufort at the Maritime Museum

We met our friends Melissa and Will Russell and their kids, Joshua and Olivia, today in Beaufort and went to the Maritime Museum. There was a special pirate exhibit that we wanted to see but there was a painting class going on in the room where the exhibit was so we weren't able to see it. This was our first time to the Maritime Museum though so we still enjoyed it and the kids got to do a scavenger hunt where they could look for and find all kinds of neat things. Of course we didn't get out of there without making a stop in the gift shop and getting Grace a shark's tooth and Zachary a little whale.

After an afternoon in the museum, we strolled along the waterfront and took some pictures and looked at all the boats then headed over to Clawson's for an early dinner. When Dave and I lived here before, we loved to eat at Clawson's but we were both a little disappointed in it this time. But it was still an enjoyable afternoon.

Birthday Pictures

Not sure if you will notice or not but there is definitely a theme going on here.....Elvis!  
I got lots of Elvis cards and goodies and loved them all!