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Friday, November 29, 2013

Day After the Feast

We are not black Friday shoppers, we have lots of fun at home! Today was no different. This year is a very short Christmas season,we got out all the decoration boxes, put all the fall stuff away!
I got a gingerbread house for Grandma and Lon to build.  Lon thought this was a wonderful idea
Working hard !
The mail came and a box was there for him!
He is thinking this might be what he waits for all year!
oh yes! It is what I wait for all year! My Godmother is the BEST!
Then it was back to work!   They are doing a great job. Lon tells Grandma where the frosting needs to go, and she puts it there. Lon puts on the candy!
It is looking good, and I need to get a picture posted of the finished product!
We started putting up the outside decorations. The luminarios are going up, I am about half done.  A few years ago I saw this great helicopter at Home Depot.  But I did not have a place to put it in Kirkland.  I found a perfect place in Summerville!
Today was a good day!

Happy Thanksgiving 2013

Our table was set the night before. I love having a formal dinging room!
The turkey going in the oven!
Mom and Andy came down to help us have a wonderful Thanksgiving. Mom is helping me unwrap the turkey. He turned out very nice this year.
Our beautiful turkey!
The boys relaxing while the food cooks
Ready to sit down and enjoy a great feast!
We all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and hoped you did too!

IHOP Penguin

 Sunday the 24th of November, we went to IHOP after church. They had a lady walking around making balloon animals for tips.
Lon was SO excited about this. He thought this was the coolest thing EVER
Meet Gerald Kawalski. He came up with that name all by himself.

Party Saturday!

Saturday, the 23rd of November, was the last Saturday Market.  We had to go!  I wanted to get some things for Christmas!
Talking dogs with the rescue people. He really does want a dog, but we are not yet ready for a dog. Soon. Very soon.
In front of the machine that grinds corn into grits.  Yes, I got some.

After this we spent a little bit of time looking at the market, getting some jam, and other fun stuff.
We had to go and get some lunch since we had a birthday party to go to!
The birthday party was for Lon's classmate.  It was held at a roller rink. Lon hugged the wall for a little while. He was giving it a good try
He did get out in the middle and had a very fun time skating.
It was nice to be invited to our first birthday party here in South Carolina.

On the Way Home!

We got up early, finished packing the car. We left at about 6:10am. We were still going to try to get out to the Outer Banks before going home.  November 18
For the boy who never naps in the car, he was asleep fairly quickly.
Driving down the road ! Virginia is so pretty in the fall
We made it to Kill Devil Hills !! It was a fun drive, slow in places, but fun!
I checked the web site before we left,and it said that the Jr. Ranger program was available in the summer. Uh-oh, so I called. They did have the program and they were ready for Lon and had his booklet at the desk.  They took his picture for the web site, but we have not seen it yet.
Looking through the museum, I did not know that "the boys from the Life Saving Station" came to help the Wright brothers move the airplane around the dunes. We learned that from the movie.
The view from the top of the hill. I did not realize that it was that far! We had to go up there, Lon had to read the inscription on the monument and write down part of it in his booklet.
Lon is in front of the monument.  It was very large, and it was very windy!!
Reading about the future of flight.
Taking his oath for the badge.  This was a badge, not a patch this time. We really had a good time there. We do want to go back and explore more, but we did want to get moving.
I had looked at the map and there was no clear way to get from the Outer Banks down the coast. Roads meandered, and some just stopped.  It was actually looking faster and more direct, to go back to I-95.
If we did that we would pass another National Park.
 The bridge from the Outer Banks to Roanoke Island.
Elizabeth Gardens. I saved this for next time.
Reading about all that happened at Fort Raliegh.   Not only was it the place of the Lost Colony, other things happened out there through the years. A Civil War battle, and then a sanctuary for enslaved people during the war.  There were also some wireless innovations that took place here too!
Jr Ranger badge #40.  Lon earned 10 on this trip.  I was very proud of him for doing all the work required to get them done
It was getting late and we were going to be driving in the dark, but I just did not want to be driving too long in the dark.
Alligator river.  There was hardly anyone out on the road but us.
Beautiful fall colors
Fields of cotton!  We were almost back to I-95. It was a fun detour out to the Outer Banks. It was fun, even in November.  We want to go back and see more!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Baby George Washington

Monday, November 18 was hopefully our last day in Virginia. Not that we did not like staying at Grandmas, but it was well past time to go home! We missed Daddy like crazy!
We went out to George Washington's Birthplace. Poplar Grove.  He grew up at Ferry Farm, closer to Fredericksburg, and then spent his adult life at Mount Vernon.
Lon liked all the ducks and the crane
Face in the hole. Really, I think we need a new name for those.
Grandma and Lon learning things about the very young George Washington
Working his booklet, looking for all the different plant life in Plant life bingo. The only square we did not find was poison ivy. But we were not really looking
Finally, a smile. Part of the requirements for this Jr Ranger badge was to attend a ranger led program. That is usually not a problem, they even had one starting at noon, we would be just in time.
Well, we got there on time. We were the only ones there.  The ranger told us this was a sewing circle, and we were to repair costumes for the volunteers. She was not going to teach sewing, you had to already know what you were doing and be good at it. You had to know to hem, without an iron. and keep the stitches small enough so they would not show. Hmm, that was not going to work for us. Lon was getting frustrated, but to his credit he walked away, and did not lose his temper with the ranger. I was not happy with her either.  I told Lon I would talk to the rangers at the station and we would work something out.
Looking at the blacksmith's shop.
Inside the house. It is not the original.  They have some period furnishings. Lon loved the curtains on he bed. He thought the embroidery would have taken a very long time to do. Yes, it would!
Okay, Let's get this done, time to go back to the visitor's center
Time out for a picture with the cows
We talked to the ranger at the visitor's center, and we worked it out that the movie would count towards the ranger led program.  Lon was happy.
The smaller Washington Monument.
We got a call, the car is all better! We could pick it up on the way home.  Time to pack up the car and get ready to go! We would be going home early in the morning.

Manassas or Bull Run

They are the same place. This is where the first battle of the Civil War took place. The second battle was at Wilson's Creek, in Missouri.
The Visitors Center. Sunday, the 17th of November
We got Lon a Lon sized sweatshirt at Wegmans the night before. He is much more comfortable in that.
Standing in front of one of the exhibits. They had a Union Cavalry sword that looked very much like the one I have in my bedroom!
We met another family at the Visitors Center and the boy was about Lon's age. He was enthralled with all Lon's badges, so I told his Mom about the program and they went and got the booklet. The little boy was thrilled to be doing this.
The movie at the Visitor's Center was very graphic. Little kids should really not see it. One girl got up and left with her mom. I asked Lon if he wanted to go and he said no, not yet. We did have extra cuddles later on.
Getting his Jr Ranger badge. He got this one, and since he had done 5 Civil War segments in Virginia, they also awarded him a Jr Ranger Civil War at 150 badge.  The Ranger was so impressed with Lon and all his knowledge that he went down to the office and got Lon a very special brass Manassas coin. Lon felt so proud.  He shows off that coin every chance he gets.  We also got the trading cards, the volunteer told us there were some others for Manassas out at the farm where the second battle took place. I told Lon we would have to wait on those.  A few minutes later, while we were out on the porch, waiting for Mom, he came out and said, no you should not have to wait, and gave them to us. That as so sweet.
He got a cavalry hat. Looking at the limbers. He thinks those are pretty cool.
Grandma!I am running to show you my new coin!
Exploring the battlefield since Grandma and Grandpa Andy went in to watch the movie
Standing in from of the Stonewall Jackson Statue
The stone house
Waiting for Grandma.
One of the best parts of being at Grandma's house is walking Burney!! Lon is having so much fun with that dog!
Lon loves that he and the dog are the same age. He calls Burney his puppy brother.
Still working on his snowman. Doing a great job, taking his time.
It was a good day at Grandmas