Tuesday, December 30, 2008

They made it through a BLIZZARD!!!!!!

Now being from the deep South I do not think that any of us can quite imagine what the word "blizzard" really means unless we are in one....but I'll tell you this, if my Mother was terrified even in the slightest, I know it was BAD!!!!
So around 8:00PM last night I get this cryptic text from my Mother that reads "going 1mph in blizzard....terrifying" so I am thinking that's not too good but I trust Doug to drive it because hell, he grew up in Canada and knows how to do these things. However, I was still uneasy until I received the next text about an hour and a half later "we made it to Gralf's, it was SO SCARY"...I mean really, lets think about this....my ENTIRE family is on this one short bus here....I was glad to know they made it safely to destination No. 3!!!

FYI - "Gralf" is what we call Doug's father whose name is Alf, Gralf stands for something like "grandpa Alf" you get the idea. Oh, and his wife Deb is "Greb"so it's Gralf & Greb"

Gralf & Greb live in Maxwell, Ontario, Canada

Monday, December 29, 2008

Idle time....what to do with it?

So, my ENTIRE family loaded up in my Sister's "Big Winnie" (that's what we fondly refer to her Winnebago as) and headed north Christmas day to do some visiting of family and friends on both sides of the US/Canada border! And by "entire" I mean My Mother, her husband, his son, Peyton, my Sister, Brother-in-law and their 2 boys! Everyone that I would normally see or talk to every day. Peyton is 10 years old now, well fixing to be 11 in March, so I have TOTALLY FORGOTTEN what it is like to have "free time"!!!!!! By the 3rd day I was so incredibly bored and man was I SO READY to go back to work today. I think it's the first time in my life that I was thankful it was Monday!

Peyton in the snow!!!!

Peyton has gotten to see "real snow" at my Aunt Les' and Uncle Dan's home in Ontario, New York, so she was really happy! They crossed over in to Canada last night and are currently in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. From there they will head to visit Doug's Dad, Step-mom and Sister then to Doug's Mother's and other Sister's house then to visit the Greene's. (who, by the way are some of my favorite friends of Doug's, they went on the cruise with us last summer) Then after that, they are heading back down South and will be home on Jan. 4. So, needless to say, I am pretty much bored to tears!

Mother & Peyton in front of the falls!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas at Nanny's...helping others....

So this past Saturday we had our annual Christmas dinner-get together at my Nanny's house (my Mother's mother). Several years back we made this rule that only the kids get a gift since all the rest of us are old now and no one really needs anything, etc. Well, instead what we do is each person or branch of the family saves all their change throughout the year and a different person from the family each year gets to pick a charity in which we will give this money to. We all bring out our change jars, jugs, bags, piggy banks and what have you and after we eat we pour it all out on a big table and sit around and seperate it, roll it then count it all up, try and keep Blayd from eating the it....the child loves to put change in his mouth, during which we have fun conversation, catch up with the out of towners and get extremely DIRTY hands...you have NO IDEA how NASTY money is!!!! This year we managed to save up I believe the total was somewhere around $1,300-1,400 dollars! My sister was the lucky one to get to pick the charity this year and the donation is going to The American Cancer Society in honor of our Nanny surviving cancer and our Cousin Lucius Powers succumbing to his brain cancer this past August.

You can't imagine how much more fulfilling it is to do something like this and give to those less fortunate or help out a local charity than to just shower everyone with more gifts they do not need! We have been doing this for several years now and we really enjoy it, except for the nasty money hands afterwards, but it is worth it!

Side Note on Nasty Money Hands: You would have thought I was scrubbing in for surgery if you saw me washing up afterwards...lol...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Some Gatlinburg Pics as Promised! (a few anyway)

Peyton, Stephanie and Kaitlyn on the SKY LIFT.....no way was I riding that
thing up a mountain!

UBP - United Balled Pythons

This pic if from competition the first day....you can see Peyton in the second stunt group from the left.
Peyton in her snazzy airbrushed pullover she just HAD to have!

Somewhat of a front view of the house we were in...I could not back up far enough to take a pic of the whole thing or I would have tumbled down the mountain into a log cabin!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Glad to be home!

This past Thursday through Sunday we went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for the annual Jamfest Cheerleading competition. It was incredibly C-O-L-D the whole entire time we were there! I love the cold so I thoroughly enjoyed myself. It was actually cold enough that it snowed on some of the mountains and we were able to take the girls up and let them play in it for a bit.

We stayed at this AMAZING house on the mountain called Belvedere and it was spectacular. HUGE HUGE HUGE! It was very creepy though trying to maneuver a Yukon Denali up a twisty mountain driveway wide enough for a Vespa!! Very scary at times!

Friday night the girls rode a float in the annual Christmas parade and nearly froze to death it was a balmy 27 degrees out there with brisk wind! Needless to say we dropped them off at the meeting site and found a restaurant towards where they would end up and dined, drank and stayed nice and warm waiting on them!

Peyton post-parade FROZEN!!!

The girls came in 2nd by LESS than 1/10th of a point!!! However, they were psyched because they did really well and received the "Most Entertaining Routine" award as well.

It was a great trip and great fun and I did not take as many photos as I should have, go figure but I will post them ASAP.