I'm not making a resolution, because I don't want to fail. I do hope to do better in 2010... be a better person, and a better friend to those I care about. I also hope to be better to me - to stop making excuses and get going on the things I need to do. I won't list my shortcomings - if you know me, you know them, and if you don't I don't want to disillusion you. I hope you have a wonderful, successful and blessed New Year filled with love, friendship, good health and happiness.
What I said about Penguins! Kim can't believe her eyes - she opened her gift and it was a penguin! A singing, flapping penguin! How good can it get? It was sooo funny! and we have several penguin lovers in our ranks - so it was sought after, as well.
Lots of happy faces, and cool gifts. I got, you're not going to believe this - a Vampire chocolate Santa Clause and vampire Christmas carols book. Too funny!
As a special birthday gift, Tom and Kim gave Amy a hand made hat. The fun part was that she got to make it herself. All three of them spent the day at an Alpaca farm. They met the animals, had a great home made lunch and then they each made an Alpaca hat in the color of their choice. I love all of them and think it's so interesting that they are all so different.
They had so much fun, it made me want to do it, too. I wish I looked good in hats!
We had a birthday party for Amy on the appropriate date, but I just got the pictures off Bob's camera. It was a nice party and I wanted to post them anyway. Things are going to out of sequence, so - you'll just have to adjust!
Can you tell that Amy likes penguins?
One of us (who shall remain nameless) bought some of those trick candles, that keep coming back 'on' after you think you outed them.
Firefighter Tom to the rescue! He put them in water.
This is the dock in Ft. Lauderdale, from the ship. We boarded around 3: in the afternoon, having spent the previous night with our friends Barbara and Charles Sullivan, in The Villages. The cold weather followed us to Florida and caused the sea to be very rough. Fortunately we were on deck 4 as the motion was much more evident on the upper decks. Most of the passengers experienced sea sickness and I saw lots of patches and wrist bands. Walking was a challenge. Even standing up was tricky. We had a large private balcony with our state room and wanted to watch the ship depart. There was a delay (medical-we think someone was taken off the ship) and it was very dark. I tried several times to take Bob's picture leaning against the railing, but every time I pushed the button the ship lurched.
Bob's view from the beach. Can you find Bob? Grand Turk Island was our first stop. After all the rocking, it was great to be on land. The island is beautiful, clean, and has a great beach that you don't have to pay to use. That might be because Holland American owns it - maybe. The definitely own all the shops. Bob enjoyed relaxing in the shade while I walked around town.
Two pictures of the pier in Puerto Rico. We were there for a full day. I would really like to know what the trough shaped thing is that is suspended above the main pier. Anyone??
These are the tenders that bring passengers to small islands when the sea is too shallow for the ship, and usually there is no pier. Called Half Moon cay, it is a private beach that belongs to the Cruise Lines. Some people headed for the beach really early - others, like us, waited for the crowd to thin. Also, from past experience we knew that the sea could change. This rough seas make it difficult for the tenders to dock with the ship. People on the last tenders back spent a lot of time circling the ship while the sailors tried to dock. Not fun. We didn't do that.
We had a short visit to St. Thomas, VI and enjoyed chatting with the local merchants and other passengers ashore. I walked past these lizards several times and didn't see them. They blend in with their surroundings. How many do you see? Bob got up early and saw this double rainbow in the mist. He couldn't get the whole thing in one picture. I hope you can see both in this picture. Isn't it incredible?
We returned to Ft. Lauderdale a week later, with the seas getting rougher as we approached. Sitting in the dining room felt more like being in the dining car of a train. This was our second 'Nation Cruise,' the first being to Alaska. The speakers were very well informed and enjoyable to listen to. Howard Dean was the biggest 'celeb' on board, but there were were probably 8 - 10 other lesser stars, who were all nice and 'available' for conversations. We met lots of interesting and friendly people and will probably do it again, if we have the opportunity.
House block #10 is deciduous trees and bushes (not George). They're cute. I took the picture before I realized that I had forgotten one bush, so it's trees minus 1. I enjoyed making them because they were easy for a change. The pine trees are next, and I might be caught up before the next part is available. I'm really excited about the assembly and doing some extra 'enhancing'. This has been a fun project!
This one presented the biggest challenge to me. So many little squares. The smaller roof was difficult, too. I'm liking how the quilt is shaping up and I think I will finish this one and hang it somewhere. I want to embellish the houses but wanted to wait 'til they were all done before deciding how. The deciduous trees and bushes are next. I think I'll add some pink in them.
Unfortunately, my computer got this awful virus Thursday morning. It came out of 'nowhere' and I watched it download and couldn't do anything about it. And, I had just checked to see if my system security was up to date. It was, so this came with an email from someone. I can't back track to find out, because it wiped out my computer. Actually, it locked up my computer and the only way to fix it was to reinstall the operating system. That wiped out my email and all the programs that were installed on the computer. I don't have it up and running yet, but the GMail is still working because it's not stored on the computer. So, you can email me there if you want to and I can check it with my lap top. Since the virus immediately shut down my computer, I'm pretty sure it didn't go on from here.
If your computer refuses to work, and you get the screen shown above - just give up and call your tech person.
Bob didn't think he wanted a birthday party - I thought we should celebrate Our compromise - a family party to celebrate Bob's 70th, plus Antonio's, Cindy's and Jacob's birthdays. It was difficult to find a date his entire family could make, but we did it! And, Steve and Margaret, Bob's brother and sis-in-law, my Mom and Joey were available, too! It was so nice to have everyone!
What I didn't know was that Bob's good friends from Chung Moo Kwan were planning a surprise party for him after practice during his birthday week. I was invited and it was very nice. They are such nice, thoughtful and caring friends. Bob put out the candles 'Chung' style - very impressive. I left some of the pictures un-cropped so the school could be seen.
The black uniforms are the instructors, white uniforms are students. The other women in the pictures is Head Instructor John's wife, Assistant Instructor Georgann. The children are theirs - Sasha and Charlie - Adorable - so well behaved - and loving. The party was very joyful.
Well - it finally happened, after a long wait. And it went so fast, just like Christmas. It was wonderful seeing 'everyone' - I just wish I knew who they all were! Without the yearbook pictures to refer to, it was very difficult to recognize people. Only the teachers didn't change. The rest of us are 51 years older. Of course some of my friends I knew immediately, and others - sadly, I didn't.
We were a class of 80. The first graduating class of Lake Park High School and I was the very first graduate! Not for any special reason, just that my name started with A, but it's still an honor and there will never be another 1st graduate from Lake Park. In the picture on the bottom, showing the processional, I can see my parents and grandmother in the audience. Also, all of the faculty are seated in the front. They were all so young - just a few years older than we were. What a great experience to be in a school where you mattered, and your talents were encouraged and supported. And you knew everyone by their name (both first and last) - no exceptions!
Here is a nice picture of the Inn we stayed in. I'd recommend it as a wonderful, comfortable place to stay with a welcoming host Sue Anton, who makes the most delicious breakfasts ever!
One of the cozy porches available to guests. There are three, plus lots of other cozy corners to 'get lost' in. There are working fireplaces in living and dinning rooms and at least one of the bedrooms upstairs.
You can see why we stayed an extra day. I'd like to go back sometime. Maybe we will.
Welcome to Massachusettes! This is not a black and white picture - it was that overcast and foggy. The picture below shows the resaurant where we had lunch, taken from some distance away. It is in the upper right portion of the picture. We walked a long way. I took this on Sat. We walked on a paved path in the rain to enjoy the view. Pretty spectacular. Yes, the sun does shine in Maine. Bob and I drove to Maine this past week, and returned last night. Yes, I know - 4 days of driving for a 3 day visit... but we enjoyed the beautiful scenery and listened to Audio books. We take turns driving, and we stop when either of us wants to. No debate. It was very foggy when we entered Massachusetts, and the fog turned into rain as we continued through the states, to Maine. We arrived in time, but had a little trouble identifying the Inn and there are no numbers on the buildings. I really enjoyed getting to know Bob's ASMI friends - I had met some of them at other conferences, but not the wives. Everyone was very nice and interesting and well informed. Conversations were so interesting. Bob wanted to take a group picture. The space was a little tight, so he went around to the other side, and took it through the window. Pretty funny. Hope no one is in witness protection! Most meals, besides breakfast, consisted of some kind of sea food - what else? And I enjoyed my first whole Maine lobster. Yum.
We stayed in a beautiful bed and breakfast in York Harbor,the Inn at Harmon Park. Sue, our hostess was a delight, and took way too good care of us. Her breakfasts were scrumptious. Each room at the Inn is unique and there are many cozy corners to curl up in, should you want to read or be alone.
One of my favorite people turned 95 yesterday! And he can read without glasses!! And he can sing all the verses of 'Darkie Sunday School' and carry a tune. My dear friend Janet (his daughter) and Hilda (his wife) had a party for him and many of his friends and family. The food and conversation were great. It's wonderful to catch up with old friends.
This is Joey without a hat, in case you didn't recognize him. He had a rare afternoon off and decided to go fishin'. I got this picture via his phone. Isn't' technology great? I'm really enjoying the Internet stuff - it's almost like magic! No one would have been able to convince me 10 years ago, that I wouldn't leave home without my phone, and that I would routinely take my lap top with me to finish work at home or in Geneva. I feel like a bag lady getting on the train with at least two bags, my purse, phone, camera, lap top and mug of coffee - and, it's a half hour ride! BTW the fish lived to swim another day.
This guy is standing near the train station, and it is always raining on him. It's just a local shower though, as no one else gets wet, except a occasional child, who runs under the umbrella.
Graduated from Lake Park H S in Medinah, went to secretarial school, worked a few years, married and had 3 great kids. I have 2 grandsons, 4 grand dogs (Griffons)& 2 grand cats (Maine Coon). When my first 2 children were in grade school I was a professional volunteer, active in PTA, Elmhurst Children’s Theatre & Church stuff. I started a small business while expecting my third and have been working ever since. I'm a fibre artist combining cloth, yarn, and photography. Carolee Creations, Inc. is the corporate name - SewSweet Dolls was the first business. Portrait Pillows, Bags and more . . . is my latest venture, started in ‘98, after my husband died. My daughter and I make custom gift items incorporating photographs - purses, coasters, jewelry, ornaments, quilts, etc. I love going to work every day-my studio is full of fun things! I am in a serious relationship with Bob, a retired Psychology prof, since the beginning of the century. We are involved in activities at First Church and in Elmhurst. When we have time we like to travel. I take sewing classes when I can fit them in, recently learned to weave, and would like to draw and paint again someday.