Thursday, July 26, 2007

Visiting Siblings, Part Two

Chapmans and Burks

Last weekend, Cami, her husband Matt and my brother Justin came up from Richmond. This is Justin's first major trip and first plane ride. Apparently Justin's first plane ride was quite a memorable one. They had delays, cancellations, a true New York taxi ride between airports, more delays, then a very rough ride into Richmond where multiple people (including Justin) were not enjoying the ride at all.

Friday Jill and I played hookie from work and met them at King's Dominion. What a perfect day. The weather was great with very little humidity and the lines were amazing. Several times we walked right onto a partially filled coaster and most of the other rides were only a short wait.

In the middle of our fun, I headed back out to the car for a phone interview for a position at Siemens. The interview went very well. The only down-side of the position is that it will require a lot of traveling.

Justin tried his hand at a few games and won a few toys. I don't think I have ever played a single game at an amusement park. Besides being rigged against you, I really don't want to be one of those people lugging around their loot. That would cramp my style and hinder my coaster riding.

I think only Cami was not dragging along by the time we left. She was ready for more coasters. The rest of us were having difficulty walking without a slight sway in our step. We stopped at Cracker Barrel on the way home to replenish our exhausted and dizzy bodies. Mmmmm, meatloaf, chicken fried steak, chicken fried chicken, chicken and dumplings, mashed potatoes...

Saturday we spent the day tubing on the Potomac river. We drove to Harper's Ferry, picked up our classic black inner tubes, road the bus to the drop-off then spent a lazy afternoon in the water. I forgot to mention the trip to Target first in order to procure some water essentials. Foot ware, water guns, and squishy, Spiderman water frisbee. They added a competitive element that was quite fun. And I don't think we lost anything! We ran into Anne, her friend Holly and a couple of Boys on the river. It was good to see Anne again as it has been awhile.

Saturday evening, Jill and I drove down to Ashburn while Cami, Matt and Justin crashed at our pad. We went to the reception of Lara Sedar and Nick Wood. They looked wonderfully happy and the reception was very quite nice. We also got caught up on Tara's recent adventures and met her friend Jesse. (And we saw Anne again.)
Sunday we did the DC thing. We drove two cars since the crew was heading on to Richmond in the afternoon. We saw the Marine Memorial (Iwo Jima), Arlington Cemetery, a quick drive by of the Government offices, the US Capital, all the Smithsonian's, and then successfully found two parking spots not far from the White House. Just as we were approaching the White House were escorted off the grounds by a nice young man carrying a large gun. Not too long after that, the three Marine One helicopters flew overhead as they brought President Bush back to the White House.

We moved on to the Washington, WWII, the reflecting pool, Korean, Lincoln, and Vietnam memorials. Then we grabbed some Slurpies at the 7/eleven we had parked next to (GWU campus building) and loaded into my car. We drove over to Hains Point and had a picnic on the lawn.

As we finished our lunch, the Columbian Tall Ship, Gloria, sailed into Washington, DC right past us. It was a pretty impressive display. Did you notice all the people standing on each of the sails? They fired off several rounds from their cannons which was pretty cool too.

After playing around on the Awakening, and Matt and Justin practicing their Defense against Giants skillz, I dropped everyone off at the FDR memorial while I circled and circled looking for a parking place. This was exactly why I had suggested loading everyone into one car. All the softball games and cricket matches make it had to find a parking spot in this area. Apparently most of the fountains were not running in the memorial which is the main reason I like this one. It is really nice at night with all the lights on. Maybe, since the fountains were dry, that is why they took multiple pictures of the drinking fountain!

We said our goodbyes, then I lead them onto I395. One final wave and we negotiated our way back to Frederick.

We packed a lot things into those 36 hours. Jill and I basically collapsed on the the couch when we got home. It felt good to relax and catch-up on our recorded shows.

Here are the rest of pictures of King's Dominion, Tubing on the Potomac, and Washington, DC.

Monday, July 23, 2007

The Siblings Come to Town, Part One

Kneelands, Tuckers, and Burks

A couple of weekends ago, Jill's sibling came to visit us and this weekend my siblings came.

Linda, husband Toby and Kelly came down from Pennsylvania for a quick weekend visit.

We visited the Community Bridge again before ordering some pizza.

We also had over some Baltimore friends that same night.

We enjoyed some great food and some crazy games.

Toby, Linda and Kelly left Sunday morning as Kelly had to get back home for a big soccer game.

It was a short visit but a lot of fun.

Here are the rest of the pictures.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Happy Friday the Thirteenth

Yay! Another Friday the thirteenth is here
Other than work being no fun, it has been a great day.

Hopefully you do not suffer from






Hope it goes well for all of you too!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

July is Already Here

I can't believe how quickly time seems to be going by. June is gone, summer has begun, and now the Fourth of July has passed us by too.

Jill's parents spent last weekend with us. They drove down here for a 70th birthday party for an old friend of theirs in Leesburg. Jill and I tagged along too. We had a great evening at the Jenkins' enjoying great home-cooked BBQ and Jill's mom took us on a tour of the amazing house.

Bruce and Donna joined as at church then we visited the Community Bridge again. It had come up in several conversations the previous night since it seems to be one of the few notable items about Frederick. Jill and Donna spent the afternoon creating a cover for Paco's cage while I help Bruce load to music onto his new IPod Shuffle.

Staying home on Wednesday for the Fourth of July was very nice indeed. We spent the morning enjoying breakfast with Mike, Brittany and Camden and also Nate, Sara and Evander. The rest of the day was spent working on our talks for this Sunday. Yep, we have been tagged! Our broad topic is 'Living a Christlike Life'.

Wish us luck.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Phone Talk

This last month Maya was having a rough time at home. She was acting out, throwing tantrums and being very oppositional with Emily. During one of my (almost) nightly calls, Maya was currently in 'time-out' and Emily's nerves were fried. While I was discussing things with Emily, Maya slipped a note under the door that said she was sorry and that she wanted to have a happy family. That brought the tears out.

We (Maya, Emily, Jill and myself) had a bit of chat to try to determine what we could do to make sure we had a happy family. Maya mentioned that some of the girls in her class have not been very nice to her. When they play games she is told that it is only a game for two people. That made me quite sad. We have been told by the Sugarbear staff that Maya is one of the best behaved kids they have and that she plays with just about everyone. That makes me feel good.

Later in the week, Emily was trying to convince Maya to talk to me on the phone. "Just tell him goodnight and you love him." After a few moments Maya timidly answered the phone. I quickly fired off a couple of accolades and tried to squeeze in a question about how she did this last week. She said "Fine, but I really only wanted to say I love you and goodnight." As my Dad would say, "Cheeky girl!"

Apparently she did much better the rest of the month.

Hopefully next week is good too.