Friday, June 17, 2011

technical difficulties

Well. Some bad news in these parts. The power adaptor cord thing for our laptop completely broke yesterday. We've bought 3 different replacement cords and none of them have worked and we aren't completely sure why. So, if it's not the cord (which doesn't even make sense that it wouldn't be, because it worked if we tweaked the old cord and held it at a certain angle - before the tip broke off completely, that is), then it's an internal problem which we've been told is not worth fixing on our $3oo laptop.

So, the good thing is our desktop PC is semi-functional at the moment so I have access to my email and FB and everything. The bad thing is that my camera software, and the editing program I use with my photos, and my itunes library and all of that kind of stuff is on the laptop, and not easily transferred. So this just makes blogging inconvenient at best, and nearly impossible at worst. I can't get to the photos I've already uploaded, and I can't upload any new photos either right now. And what is blogging without photos?!

So my trip recap is, at this point, postponed indefinitely. So sad. I know how disappointed you all must be. I myself am terribly distraught over it. I'm not sure what to do about it. We are thinking our best solution may be to look for a used laptop to replace this one. But even that requires more money than we have to spend at the moment. My brother in ID has an old Mac laptop he wants to sell. But it is in Idaho. Ugh.

Anyway -I'm awfully sorry to have to take this unexpected blogging break. :( But I'll be back (with pictures!!) just as soon as I can possibly can. See you then.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

{small interruption}

Just have to interrupt my trip recap posts (which are slow going, unfortunately) to announce that Samuel got a spot in the charter school!!! Wohoooo!!! I am so incredibly happy and relieved. I just think it will be great for all the kids to be at one school together (excepting Abigail who will be at the middle school, of course). And I think it will work great for him to be in first grade over there.
I just had to let you know. Hallelujah!! :)
One big prayer answered at our house. I am so grateful, I can't even say. phew.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Home to the Commonwealth: (Day 3 Teaser)

Our VIP tour of Georgetown.
Yes, we're in an ambulance.
Full story coming soon. ;)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Home to the Commonwealth: Day 2, Monticello

Let's just start this day off right with a quote I can no longer live without (now that I've seen it): ;)

Now that that's settled, on May 30th we set out driving south to Charlottesville, VA to visit the marvelous Thomas Jefferson's home, Monticello. On the way there, we listened to just about every Taylor Swift song known to man and I learned all sorts of pop culture stories that I never knew I didn't know (haha) - but wasn't the drive beautiful???

And we only had to stop and ask for directions once. And we weren't too far off course either. yippee!

We stopped first at Michie's Tavern, a little historical site with colonial stuff. And we discovered this Clothier's Shop, where you can not only buy all sorts of colonial garb and accessories, but they also help fit you in it and let you go outside to pose for pictures! Fun!!

(Chelsea and Heather did the honors)

And, Monticello. I know I've been there on at least one school field trip at some point in my life, but Heather and Chelsea had never been there, and things are always a little different visiting them as an adult rather than a school kid, so I enjoyed it thoroughly. It was just really really hot. VA was having a nasty heat wave with temps in the high 90's and heat indexes over 100 (with the high humidity). It was sort of miserable.

But, lots of pretty flowers to take photos of, an underground tunnel (shade and cooler temp, hallelujah), and interesting things all around made it all worth it.

(I loved taking these shots, and couldn't pick just one. Macro flower shots with blurred Monticello in the background - yay!)

I really wished I could have bought the replica of Jefferson's rotating reading stand which held 5 books open to a page all at once - but I didn't have the ~$500 to spend. Darn. So I contented myself with buying a magnet with his quote "I cannot live without books." Love that Jefferson. ;)

And then . . . Heather really wanted to take a peek at the University of Virginia (which Jefferson also designed and founded) so we meandered over there with the help of her iphone GPS. We didn't even get lost this time (oh our many driving adventures!). Here are some pics of the part of campus we saw real quick:

Then, to try to avoid Memorial Day traffic on I-95, we took a back-road route back up north again and I love love loved the drive. We didn't hit any traffic at all. There were many hilly and swervy little roads, the trees were beautiful, and we passed some nostalgic places (some of which I didn't even know were along the way) including the German restaurant where our High School German Club went on a field trip for dinner a couple times, a road that I'm pretty sure I drove often to my violin lesson but would never be able to find my way around again, and other places where I remembered certain people, events, occasions that I had nearly forgotten. Craziness.

And that sums up Day #2 I think! hooray:)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Home to the Commonwealth: Day 1 (my trip to VA recap))

(sidenote #1: yes, Virginia is a Commonwealth - the lovely state in which I was born and raised. Most of you know that already. If you didn't, you do now.)

(sidenote #2: oh and you already know these will be long posts with lots of pictures. Don't be surprised. What may be surprising, however, is the unusual number of photos of me. Take it while you can, folks. I'm now back to my usual comfortable post behind the camera lense, thankyouverymuch.)

So, on May 28, I flew out to the Commonwealth with my mom, sister Heather, and niece Chelsea. On the way we folded tissue paper to make flowers for my sister Melissa's wedding getaway car. It was pretty awesome when all 4 of us were happily accordion-folding for no good apparent reason on the flight.

Melissa's wedding was June 5 - a week away. So we had lots of plans for lots of homeland fun beforehand.

First up, a trip to the Nation's Capitol for reminiscing and touristy exploits.

We took the metro and were greeted by this lovely sight in the metro station. I felt so welcomed. :)

Then we walked along this trail by the Potomac River and hiked on over to take a peek at the Theodore Roosevelt Monument, which none of us had ever actually seen.

me and my first pic with the gorgeous lush Virginia-ness:

And me and Teddy. Turns out, in case you didn't know (as we didn't), there are 2 Roosevelt monuments in DC. One for Teddy and one for Franklin D. Still have never seen Franklin. But Teddy is marked off the list. :)

Then we took the metro to the National Mall and spent some time in the Museum of American History. Here's a pic of Julia Child's kitchen, of course (Julie and Julia, anyone? hehehe)

I may as well insert here that this day included some exciting mishaps. Beginning first with realizing we had forgotten to bring any water bottles. And it was dang hot. And we were awfully thirsty (I ended up paying $4 for a vitamin water just to have a bottle to refill). And then we realized we had forgotten the map we already had of the National Mall and Smithsonian Museums. We ended up paying $7 for a new one. Because there is so much to see, you can't see what you want to see without knowing exactly where everything is. You might get sidetracked by something that looks interesting, but not your top priority, and get to the end of your day without seeing what you actually really wanted to see. A map is essential. And then, Chelsea realized she had lost her metro day pass. Luckily, the metro guy seemed to pity us (and actually believed us) and he gave her a replacement pass for free so we didn't have to buy a new one. Phew!!

After the Museum of American History, Chelsea and mom were left to explore the Museum of Natural History, while Heather went off to find the Portrait Gallery, and I went to spend some wonderfully cool and quiet alone time in the National Gallery of Art. It was absolutely lovely.

(the Mall)

(the Capitol)(the Washington Monument)

And then we metroed back on over to Melissa's house for a bit, too. :)

The fun has just begun! Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

home again, home again, jiggity jig

Hello everyone.
Yes, I'm home. My gorgeous little sister was married to her mister. ;)

Lots and lots of posts and pictures to come.

I'm still trying to come to terms with my "real life" again. Although I missed my little family a lot, I had a great time on my little vacation and now I am adjusting to this wonderful and horrible time called "summer break."

It's sort of amazing to me, how complicated everything feels sometimes. I am acutely aware of all my many conflicting feelings and they manifest themselves in surprising ways sometimes. Sometimes being so aware of these things is more of a bane than a blessing. Oh well. Maybe I'll talk more about that another time. Just to sum up - if someone asked me how it was to be in my much beloved VA, I would say wonderful and also hard. And if someone asked me how it is to be back home with my favorite people in all the world, I would say wonderful and also hard. Is everything this way? Yes, perhaps.
Or maybe it's just me.

Coming and Going. Leaving and Arriving. Adjusting to ebb and flow. Hellos and Goodbyes. Ups and Downs. Back and Forth. Over and Over. I'm really not very good at all this change. Even temporary, good, fun change. Such is life.


At any rate, I just wanted to say hello. :)
more later . . .
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