Thursday, August 26, 2010

First Day of School

Today was a day we knew was coming, but somehow it ended up sneaking up on us. Of course, I'm talking about the first day of school. How is it possible that summer is over already? Doesn't seem even possible that our days of getting up, throwing a bag in the car and taking off are over for another 10 months. I also lose my freedom of going places that I can't walk. Not being able to drive because of health reasons is pure torture. I'm not old enough to have to live like this. I can't drive because of the meds, but can't live without the meds. It's a vicious circle and I don't see a way out of it.

My beautiful daughter is a senior in high school this year. She's getting ready to start her own life and is using this year to learn all she can about being a young woman. We're giving her a more freedom to make her own decisions about life, but are still here to keep her from making some of the same mistakes we've made, well, that I made growing up. I never want her to go through the same pain I did. We're teaching her about taking care of herself and an apartment as well as balancing a checkbook and managing money. She has found her first job and is really happy there. It's just entry level dishwasher at a local resteraunt, but we all start somewhere! She is thinking of being a chef, so she does need to learn the business from the bottom up.

My handsome son is a sophmore this year. He really shot up over the summer and is close to 6 feet tall now. He's part of the academically gifted program in school. Sadly, that program isn't given priority. How do I know? They're on their 4th or is it 5th teacher in so many years. The superintendent called the kids (and I quote) "Elitest, little snobs!" Can you believe it? I have a few words to describe him, but try to keep this blog PG and won't put them. He doesn't believe the program is necessary and is out to destroy it. The kids in that program are the district's best and brightest and need the extra challenge. If we lose their drive, we lose a generation of the doctors, researchers, astronaughts, computer programmers and teachers. Do we really want those positions to be filled by C-average students? Of course, I'm not afraid to go toe-to-toe with ANYONE who messes with my kids, so he and I are far from friends. He called me "Nothing but a trouble maker." I need to have a tee shirt made with that in big letters. If caring about my children and doing everything in my power to see they have a wonderful life makes me a trouble maker, then I'm proud to wear that title.

There's no excuse for the things he said and did his first year in the position. We're a small, rural area and he came from a city. Things run different here and he thinks he knows better than those of us who were born and raised here. These are OUR KIDS and we know best. We chose to raise our families here, not because we're being paid entirely too much money as some I could name.

Enough of him. He's not worth anymore of my thoughts.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Interviewing Bob Casey Jr.

US Senator Bob Casey Jr. was in the area yesterday to campaign for a State Representative hopeful Frank Straub. Of course, I had to be there to photograph it and write the article for the paper. My mother and daughter went with. (I'm not allowed to drive because of health)

I had met Casey before he was elected and interviewed him extensively on the campaign bus. He's a very nice guy and happy to sign anything when he was campaigning and I was hoping he was still the same after being elected. I had made a scrapbook page to remember the interview. I brought it with and my daughter had him sign it to me. He commented on the photo and asked where it came from because he never saw it before. I reminded him of where and he remembered talking to me.

When I was taking photos to go with my article, he kept commenting that I had the only real camera in the room. The other newspaper photographers weren't pleased to hear that, but it's true. My camera is a pro model Nikon D200 with the extra battery pack and a massive flash that rivals the run for brightness. :) He posed for photos with me when my daughter took the camera.

Political rallies are a good place to get politicians' autographs. Anyone else collect political memorabilia? I picked up campaign buttons and will use the stickers to make another scrapbook page for Straub.

Labels: , , , ,

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pirahna 3D -- Review

Arielle and I have always loved to watch bad B-movies on SyFy, so when we saw the trailers for Pirahna 3D, we knew it was a movie we had to go see.

We had some free time yesterday, so off we went for a girls night out. We picked up a few things, including a light jacket for each of us since hubby won't let me keep hoodies in the car.

We get to the theater a couple minutes after the movie started, picked up popcorn and pop and settled into our seats. There had to have been at least 15 minutes of commercials. (I'm paying for this??) Soon the cheesy goodness began and kept up for the rest of the movie. :) Guys, there is plenty of T & A and full frontal nudity. Moms, it's probably not a movie to take the kiddies to.

The feeding frenzy of the pirahna wasn't as gory as it could have been. Finding the chewed up corpses was nasty.

We laughed and laughed throughout the entire movie. I'm not sure that's what the director was aiming for when he made it, but how can anyone take it seriously?

Labels: , ,

I so want this bag!

Gerry of Gerry's Soap N Stuff is holding a contest for a gorgeous bag. As everyone knows, I'm completely addicted to purses. I have many in a variety of shapes, styles and colors. Some designer, some knock offs, some homemade and some just found. I don't have one this shape or color.

Blog button src="">

Labels: ,

Camera Critters #124

During our Virginia trip in early July, we spent a day at Water Country, which is part of the Busch Gardens experience. I'm not a big fan of water parks and am afraid to ride the tubes, so for me, it's all about taking photos of my family. At this park, they have several animals and I wanted to share them with my friends.
If you want to see more beautiful, funny and sweet animal photos, pop over to

Camera Critters

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Gettysburg Vacation

As anyone who reads here regularly knows, I have a deep love of the town of Gettysburg in the Southern portion of Pennsylvania. Randy and I have spent our anniversary there every year for the past several years. I just can't get enough. It's one of those things I'll never be able to explain fully, but when I get there, it feels like I'm "home." We arrived there Wednesday, August 11 and left after breakfast on Saturday, the 14th. It's never long enough for me. We visited our favorite spots, including: Sachs Bridge, the Pennsylvania Memorial, Devil's Den and the Virginia Memorial featuring Gen. Robert E. Lee and his horse Traveller, as well as trying new things during our stay. We toured the Jenny Wade house, did a ghost hunt and took a battlefield bus tour with a professional guide, all for the first time.

We tried a new bed and breakfast - The Dobbin House at 89 Steinwehr Avenue - this year. We love the food and the rooms looked gorgeous, so we stayed our three nights, had our lunch in their downstairs tavern one day and had dinner in the library for our anniversary night. The food was incredible! I'm sure I had to have gained at least a couple pounds. To show you how friendly the people are in the area, the couple seated beside us at dinner wanted to buy us a glass of champagne in honor of our 22nd anniversary. I can't drink alcohol, so we had to decline, but it meant a lot to be asked. We're complete strangers and had just made small talk with them. I'm sorry I didn't get their names.

After dinner, we walked to our room and saw a horse-drawn carriage in the parking lot. We have always wanted to take one of those trips, so we asked the driver to wait until we changed. I really enjoyed that ride. When it was over, we went out to Devil's Den to sit and reflect until the park closed at 10 p.m.

We went on two ghost walks and a ghost hunt at a near-by abandoned house. The group had all sorts of neat toys to play with. Even though we didn't get so much as a photo of an orb (or dust mite), it was still a fun way to spend an hour. The ghost hunt was scheduled to be from 12-2 a.m. on Friday the 13th. The group was late starting it and it took too long to hand out the toys and drive there. By the time we got to the house, it was already 1 a.m. and we had to be out by 2. The other major problem with the hunt was they had way too many people. There were 32 of us. With four "lead investigators", we were split into two groups of 16 each, with two pros. There was the house and barn to check out. The only remotely eekk filled moment for me was when the bat buzzed me in the barn. The group didn't really help the newbie hunters, so most of the time, we looked like a mob. I want to give the pros the benefit of the doubt and say they didn't realize how hard it would be to investigate with that may people and not just the money (most expensive in Gettysburg) they were receiving from each person.

The house hadn't been lived in for seven years, after the last two family members died in the home, so it was in bad shape. The floors and ceiling were in horrid shape and I'm not sure how safe it was for that many people to be walking around in it. One of the pros told Randy and me to make sure not to be in the attic with more than 5 people for that very reason. Bad part, they forgot to let everyone else know the same info. The steps to the basement were in bad shape. The equipment I had measured electrical charges. In one room, it went crazy. OK, the pro came running. I explained why it was going off - the wall was where the power came into the house. The woman in charge was also excited, until I explained that, too.

When the hunt was over, they did a quick debriefing and gave us each a nice printed certificate for participating. That was a nice touch. One of the other women on the hunt was excited because she had the same reaction from her equipment and was sure it was paranormal. The woman in charge explained what had happened. That was something some groups would never had done, they debunked. The hunter didn't want to believe it and left sure she had found something paranormal.

We were up and ready to leave early Saturday morning. After breakfast, we headed off to Ohio to see my best friend and finish up our trip. I'll be back in Gettysburg over the Labor Day weekend for the HorrorFind Convention. Of course, I'll be on the battlefields as much as possible. My daughter is a high school senior this year and I'm taking her senior photos while we're visiting. I can't imagine a better backdrop than Devil's Den or Big Round top at sunrise or sunset.

Labels: , , , , ,