Monday, June 23, 2008

Stormy Skies

We have been having lots of summer storms lately. Most of them are severe enough that I take cover inside or even in the basement, but last week I ventured outside during a storm to take pictures of the sky. The storm had pretty much passed over us and this was the post-storm sky that was left behind.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

John Wayne

Somehow I forgot to post these photos...thanks to my Dad for reminding me!

Every year the 4th graders do a project called "Living Museum". The students pick a famous person to research and then write a report about that persons life. Then they dress up and give a speech pretending to be that person. Jacob thought a long time about who he would choose, and in the end chose John Wayne. For weeks he shared John Wayne trivia with us as he read books and then wrote his report. He invited Grandpa Davis (the original John Wayne fan...and a big reason why Jacob chose John Wayne as his subject) to come to the Living Museum. Grandpa even shared some of his John Wayne memorabilia with Jacob for his display.

Friday, June 20, 2008

She can read!!

Jenna has been reading like crazy this summer! She reads things everywhere we go -signs, packages in the store, people's t-shirts, bumper stickers, and of course books. She's really sounding much better and slowly moving away from sounding out every single word. I saw her reading in the living room this week and had to sneak a few photos. She was reading "Go Dog, Go" which was one of Jacob's when he was her age!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Oh these are the people in your neighborhood....

Well....they aren't the people in MY neighborhood, but these would be the people in my neighborhood if I lived in Manhattan. That's one of the fun things about never know exactly who or what you will see.

This man was roller blading in Central Park. He had taken the time to set up lots and lots of teeny tiny cones and then was doing fancy footwork on his roller blades in between the cones.

This man was also in Central Park, right by the fountain. He was playing Beatles tunes on his guitar. Really that is not so odd....but if you look closely you will see that he is wearing a cape. Strange!

This man was in front of our hotel as we were leaving to catch a cab to the airport. He was watching the Puerto Rican Day parade. Have you ever seen a cigar that big???

We didn't see the Naked Cowboy, but we did see this lovely lady. She was standing in the middle of Times Square playing her guitar. She was way too old to be dressed this way. The picture doesn't do her justice...she was quite unattractive in person!
Another "performer" in Times Square. He/She was the most frightening imitation of the Statue of Liberty I have ever seen.
I have no idea what this person represents. He was sitting outside the NY Public Library. I didn't stop long enough to read his sign.
I don't have a photo of the person who belongs to this cart. I'm sure she was very stylish though since she apparently shops at H&M.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

NYC - Day 3

Sunday morning we woke up bright and early and took the Subway to Battery Park. From there we boarded the ferry to the Statue of Liberty. We had gotten tickets to go inside the monument, so we stood in line and went through security screening so we could go inside. The Statue was closed after 9/11. When it reopened, they only let you go to the top of the pedestal. You can no longer go into the actual statue and into the crown. That was just fine with me after I saw the very narrow winding staircase you had to climb all the way to the top! We spent some time at the top of the pedestal and then went back down to the ground level and walked all the way around the statue. Then we took the ferry back to NYC (with a quick stop at Ellis Island. Unfortunately, we didn't have enough time to get off and explore) and walked to Ground Zero. It has really changed since I was there 2 years ago and construction has begun on the new building/memorial. From there we took the subway back to our hotel, where we were greeted with lots of people and floats that were participating in the Puerto Rican Day parade. FUN! We quickly checked out and walked with our suitcase 3-4 blocks into the heart of Times Square to catch a cab to JFK.

Unfortunately, our trip home didn't go so smoothly. We boarded the plane a little late and then taxied to the runway....where we proceeded to sit and sit and sit! Apparently there were bad storms in Detroit, so we couldn't take off. Eventually we wasted enough fuel just sitting that we had to go back to the gate to refuel...and then we were told we were going to have to get off the plane because everything at Detroit was grounded....and then a storm hit JFK so we had to sit some more...and then we were told we could fly to Detroit....and then some passengers wanted off the plane....and then we had to wait while they got off....and then we had to wait while the pilot got new paperwork....and then we pushed back from the gate again....and then we finally headed back to the runway and sat in line...and then we finally took off. All that consisted of sitting on a hot, crowded plane for FIVE HOURS!! It was not a pleasant experience, especially since we had no food or drink. We finally took off at 9:15pm (instead of 4:10 like originally planned) and were told we were going to have to fly from JFK to Boston to Toronto to Detroit, making our flight 2.5 hours instead of 1 hour 15 minutes. Once we were up in the air, the pilot was told he could take a shorter route...but then we had too much fuel to land (they had extra fuel for the long flight) so we had to fly at low altitude to burn off fuel. We FINALLY got to Detroit around 11:30 pm and home to Van Wert at 2:30am.
Chris wrote a letter to Delta explaning our situation and they sent an email with "compensation" for our troubles - a $25 voucher per person. Ummm, thanks?!?!

OKay...on to day 3 photos. I am too lazy to do a collage today, so you'll just have to scroll through all the photos. Be sure to check back tomorrow. I have some bonus NYC photos of some of the interesting people we saw on our trip!

The Statue from the ground...

Family photo at the top of the pedestal...Chris didn't like being at the edge, so he stayed back against the wall. Look at the cracks on the wall- you can see the green from the statue that has washed off. Very cool!
View of Ellis Island from the top....

Family photo in front of the statue....very touristy! Back on the ferry....

Ellis Island....

NYC skyline
Ground Zero....

Last time I visited, this cross was in the middle of Ground Zero. It's been moved during construction....

Asking the friendly NYC fireman for subway directions!

Loved this firetruck....

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Day 2....continued

Our main reason for taking a trip to NYC was to watch a Yankees game. This is the last year for the current stadium, and we wanted to be sure to go to a game there before the new one was built. Chris and I toured the stadium when we went to NYC 5 years ago, but we had never been to a game in NY. It was hot, hot, hot the day of the game - especially in our bleacher seats. Luckily, our seats happened to be in the ONLY shaded section of the bleachers...but it was still way too hot! We got to see a great game...especially since the Yankees beat the Royals in the bottom of the 9th!

This photo deserved to be posted by itself instead of teeny tiny in the middle of a collage. :)

PS Sorry you can't click on the photo collages to see larger images. I have lots of photos I wanted to share and a collage seemed like the best way....but I can't figure out how to make them any bigger and still get them to upload on my blog.

Friday, June 13, 2008

NYC- Day 2

Saturday we were supposed to wake up early and go to the Today show...but when the alarm went off we all decided we were too tired to go, so we went back to sleep for a while. Jacob was bummed he missed it, but he enjoyed the sleep. We went to breakfast at a diner down the street and then walked to Bryant Park and the NY Library. Then we headed to the Yankees store so we could get some new apparel for the big game....a new shirt for me, a new shirt and hat for Chris, and a new shirt and hat for Jacob. Then we walked to Grand Central Station and caught the subway to YANKEE STADIUM! The game was awesome that it gets its on special post. So you'll have to check back for Yankees photos! It was in the mid 90s all day, so after sitting in the hot, hot sun at the game we went back to the hotel to cool off and change. Later we went to dinner at John's Pizzeria on W 44th St. - one of our favorite places to eat in NYC - and then we took the subway to the Empire State Building with hopes of going up. Once we got there we discovered that the wait was 90 minutes (and it was already 8:30pm), so we all voted to skip the Empire State Building and walked back to Times Square. Once we were there, Jenna and I went shopping in Sephora while Chris and Jacob explored Toys R Us a second time, and then we headed to Roxy's Deli for Toffee Heath Bar cheesecake - YUMMY!!!
When we got back to the hotel, I noticed right away that "something" had been nibbling on a candy bar in our "mini bar" basket. We called the front desk and got moved to a different room. Ewwww!!!!! We were a bit freaked out at first, but still managed to sleep soundly in our brand new room.

L to R (top to bottom): NYC street. . . Bryant Park . . . NY Library . . . view of the Chrysler Building (in the hazy morning sky) . . . Grand Central Station. . . sight seeing (and looking UP at all the tall buildings) . . . the Empire State Building . . . ready for their first subway ride from Grand Central to Yankee Stadium. . . in front of the library . . . 5th Avenue . . . too cool . . . the "mini bar" basket in our room - look closely at the candy bar in the front for evidence of our "visitor"

L to R (top to bottom): fountain in Bryant Park (Library in background) . . . cheesecake at Roxy's Deli . . . in front of the library . . . Chris and I in Bryant Park . . . subway . . . Toffee Heath cheesecake at Roxy's - YUMMY!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

NYC - Day 1

We arrived in NYC on Friday afternoon and took a cab from LaGuardia to our hotel. We stayed at Hotel Mela on W 44th St. - which was just a block from Times Square. After we got checked in and settled, we were off! We walked to Rockefellar Center and then headed to 5th Avenue to the American Girl store. We peeked in St Patricks Cathedral and the Apple store and then went towards Central Park. One of Chris' former students - Kari - lives in NYC, so she met us at Central Park after work and walked through the park with us. (Kari was Jacob's first "love" and was definitely one of our favorite WT students.) Central Park is one of my favorite places in NYC. I could spend a whole day in Central Park just people watching and taking photos. Jacob and Jenna wanted to see the fountain from "Enchanted", so Kari took us there. Chris and I had never been to that part of Central Park, and it quickly became one of my favorite NYC spots. We sat near the fountain and talked with Kari while the kids watched turtles in the pond. Later Kari walked us back to Times Square before she headed her own way. We ate dinner at "Ellen's Stardust Diner" - a fun 50s themed diner with singing waiters/waitresses. They are all aspiring Broadway actors and sang lots of fun Broadway tunes. After dinner we walked around Times Square before heading back to the hotel.

L to R: photo by Jacob . . . Loeb Boathouse in Central Park . . . with Kari in Central Park. . .watching turtles in Central Park . . . Bethesda Fountain . . . my dream job - a wedding photographer taking photos in Central Park!
L to R: Times Square . . .Rockefeller Center . . .St Thomas Church on 5th Avenue. . .Rockefeller Center . . . Central Park . . . Times Square

L to R: The Mall in Central Park (LOVED this!) . . . Bethesda Fountain . . . Derek Jeter - larger than life in Times Square . . . with Kari in Central Park


I still can't believe Jacob turned ELEVEN last week....that just sounds too old. He celebrated his birthday by going to school for the last day. It was the first time he's ever gone to school on his birthday, thanks to lots and lots of cancellations this year. Later that evening he had 3 friends come over. Chris took them to see the new Indiana Jones movie, and then they came back here for snacks, Guitar Hero, and a sleepover. The next day we had birthday pizza lunch with Grandpa and Grandma Covey and Uncle Ryan & Aunt Becca (with his busy schedule, the only time he could squeeze in a birthday celebration with his family was a quick lunch!). He decided he didn't want a cake this year and picked waffle bowl sundaes instead. Yummy!

With his birthday gift from iPod shuffle.

Two of his "loves" at eleven.....his new iPod and legos (Thanks Marc, Jill, Luke, and Mia!)Birthday waffle bowl sundaes - YUMMY!The boys....Nick, Cade, Jon, and Jacob

PS NYC photos are coming...I promise! I am still working through them. I filled two cards with photos!

Monday, June 09, 2008

Home from NYC

We got home late last night from NYC. The trip was so much fun....but way too hot! I have tons of photos to share and stories to tell, but first I have to tackle some things around the house like laundry and grocery shopping!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


.....and it feels great!
Hello summer vacation!!!

In honor of the start of summer vacation, I created a new summer tunes playlist. Fun stuff!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Seven on Sunday

1. Only THREE more days of school...and I couldn't be more ready! Thank goodness the weather hasn't been too hot, so it hasn't been too bad.

2. Even more importantly, only FIVE days until our trip to NYC. We have our plane tickets, Yankees game tickets, and tickets to go see the Statue of Liberty. We're working on our itinerary for the rest of our sightseeing.

3. I made a return trip to the dr. due to fatigue and achy joints/muscles. I had blood work done and it turns out that one of my levels was high, which indicates a strep infection. I haven't had any strep throat symptoms, but the dr. said that the strep infection has settled in my joints. Interesting. I'm not taking an anti-biotic for the infection. He also referred me to a rheumatologist and I have an appointment set up for mid-June to look into some possible causes of the achiness, headaches, and fatigue.

4. On top of all that, Chris passed his sinus infection/cold to me this weekend. I'm ready for it to go away!!! Hopefully it will be gone before we fly on Friday.

5. We are spending LOTS of time on our patio lately. We did a lot of work on it last summer and still have some things to do - re-do the landscaping, finish the roof, and eventually purchase an outdoor firepit. Chris' mom just brought over a fountain that she is no longer using, so we'll be adding that too!

6. Spending lots of time on our patio means lots of grilling. I'm in the process of searching on line for good grilling recipes. If you have any to share, please pass them along!! We love to grill in the summer.

7. Jacob's 11th birthday is on Wednesday. When did he get so old?? We went shopping on Friday to get his gift- an iPod shuffle. He'll be so excited!! I miss buying him toys though!

I sill have more photos to share - Jenna's kindergarten program, Jacob's Living Museum portrayal of John Wayne, and some other random photos. I'll try to get those posted early this week before NYC.