Monday, August 31, 2009

Slip, Side, & ?

Sorry, back to vacation pictures! On the Saturday we were at the Huntley Lodge, they had an afternoon of fun activities. Water slides, inflatable jumper, volleyball- well a sand area and net. Fun was being had by all. See for yourself.

Wet Slippery Fun!!!


Kickball on a volleyball court!!!

Don't fret, I Still have Mt. Rushmore, Crazy Horse, & Little Bighorn photos to share with y'all! See, bet you are sorry you read this silly blog now, right?

Have a great week, I have 3 PTA meetings and roofers STILL aren't finished. Oops, that's another blog!


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Shed Update!!!

Guess I've had you all wondering!

Do You remember The Shed? Well, Kev, the kids, and I got it all the way to the point of only needing the doors and shingles!

About the end of June a lady in an uniform knocks on my door. She is from code enforcement!!!! A complaint has been lodged, and we need to move our shed, or lower the roof, or do something. We have 60 days~!

Many sleepless nights, worry, fret, etc later, we go downtown to the city offices.

Code enforcement does not have a problem with the shed, if the roof is under 8'. OK, we can lower the roof line a few feet. Now, over to zoning. WE took the original surveyors blue print from when we bought our house, showing the existing shed on the SIDE property. Zoning states no shed may be on SIDE property. WELL, it was there before!!!

Driving through this city, there are millions of sheds on side lots! They don't go looking for infractions, however, when they receive a complaint, they must look into it! We can apply for a variance, and every neighbor within 200' of the 'offense' will receive a letter and have to sign off on the shed! OK, we went around to our neighbors, no problem, everyone of the them would sign off, EXCEPT~ you got it, the WITCH!!!!! Her Kitchen window looks over to our side yard and she sees our roof line. Kevin pitched the roof of the shed to match the house. We were planning on painting the shed to match the house. (New color after new roof) Nasty neighbor does not like seeing 2 sq feet of shed in addition to our roof, she also thinks this shed DE-values her property! We used higher grade siding, to make it look nice, put a window in it to make it look nicer, and when it would have been finished no one probably would have noticed it!

Now, we have to spend our time, labor, and more Money than which the shed cost to cap off sprinklers, plow up the back yard, buy more rock, and find help to tear down a shed that we built to withstand anything and re build it in back! Our yard is pretend, pie shape lot, house takes up most of it, so the shed barely will fit in the back.

When we talked with the neighbors, we pointed this out, that we replaced the existing shed where it was located. If they had given us time to finish, paint the shed, and let the roofers shingle it, it would have looked quited nice!

But, revenge will be sweet.............

The kids have always wanted a trampoline. With the shed taking up the back yard, the only place for the trampoline will be where the shed is right now!!! The tramp will be right up against the fence line, SORRY lady, and the cage around the tramp has to be tall for safety!!!! OH, and I think I'd better get an electrician to put up a light back there so the kids can play at night safely, don't you think? And a big party with all the kids friends needs to had real soon!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nothing hath, like a woman scorned??!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Saturday, August 29, 2009

First Day of School!

Yes, I know, I'm jumping back and forth - vacation, school, and everything else! Keeps you guessing though!

AJ decided last school year he wanted to change elementary schools and get to know the kids at the other one, so next year in middle school he would know most of the 6th graders!

The new elementary school is 'AWESOME' in his words! Amelia started middle school. She is liking it now that she is getting use to it!

I managed a few pictures the 1st day as any good scrap booking Mom would do! Enjoy- you don't have much choice, you are on my blog!

Friday, August 28, 2009

State Signs

Do other people do this? When you are traveling, do you stop by the side of the road or in some states, at the rest area, and get pictures by the State Sign?? Or am I the only CRAZY person in the world who seems to stop and take these kind of pictures?

I only ask because I never see anyone else on the side of the road!!!

Note, not in order, and due to weather, we had to do some as we left/entered the states!!!!!

Finally, out of Texas, Yippee!

And I thought TX was windy! We were racing a storm as we entered Nebraska. I videoed impressive lightening and Kev drove through some torrential rain. This picture was taken as the gust front was hitting. What a welcome, a mouthful of grit!!!

2nd pass through CO. And this was really just a pass, driving only for pit/gas stops! The far eastern part of the state isn't as pretty as the central and western part! However, the weather was much nicer than our initial entry into the state the previous week, again in torrential rain when I was driving!

Re-take!!! Had to give Nebraska a better photo than the night before!!!

And for my niece, Stephanie, T's for TX when we entered Oklahoma!!!! But, we did sing the first line of Oklahoma - a family tradition :)

Finally, back in our home state! Unfortunately, it was still 4 1/2 hours to home. Texas is BIG!

We never did get a South Dakota sign!

One view of our summer vacation!!


Thursday, August 27, 2009

22, Really? Can't be 22!

No way, uh ah I refuse to believe it! There is no way that I have a 22 year old son! I'm not THAT old!!! Christopher Neil, yes, after the great Neil Diamond, is 22 years old today!!!! I'm in shock, disbelief, denial, DEPRESSION.

Yes, I've been happily married for 24 wondrous years, and I admit that, but to realize that my first born is this old, ugh, I don't feel like I'll be 49 in less than 4 months.

Anyway, Chris is an outstanding young man. He is highly intelligent, always has been and has always been very caring, responsible, and helpful.

He is working in I.T. a large medical clinic, going to Texas Tech, and has been living in his own apartment for a year now. Yes he is independent but comes home on weekends to do his laundry!

He also became camera shy, so I'll scrounge through my computer and see what pictures I can find!

Chris and AJ

Kev and Chris help AJ build his Easter Kite!

Chris and Elke!

Christmas Day last December, after Kev's heart attacks.

The movie quality storm trooper costume that Chris built, with some help from us!

Happy Birthday, Chris, we LOVE you and are Proud of you!


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hammocks, Hawk, Hay, Highway- in Other Words, H for the A to Z photo Blog

I'm cheating! I'm using this 1 blog for 2 purposes!

A to Z Photo

and, Camera Critters

The Hawk was rescued by a wildlife sanctuary, it had a broken wing. I think it is beautiful. If memory serves, this is a red legged hawk.

The kids had a blast in the Hammock at the Huntley Lodge in Big Sky. The Lodge was named after Chet Huntley of Huntley Brinkly fame before the national news on NBC became Nightly News if any of you can remember that far back! My dad worked for NBC and worked for Huntley Brinkley!! Just a little trivia that relates to nothing!


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Paper Inundatition!!!!

Holy Cow! I day of school and my house looks like a homework maze. I spent 3 hours going through papers, signing forms, and helping Amelia and AJ set up notebooks! This is partly because I'm on PTA and 'in the know'!!!

AJ had an awesome first day of school at his new school for 5th grade, he loved it! Amelia survived middle school and it was good!!! I was briefed in detail by AJ and got about 5 words from Amelia. Sound familiar???

Well, welcome back to school everyone, back to schedules, homework, waiting in lines, and Waiting on our Kids!

Have a great first week of school, or 2nd week for some of you, and keep the faith.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Really Small Town!

OK, I have to admit, I'm a city girl, born and raised in Chi-town and the suburbs! That is Chicago to you blog friends who might not know the slang! I live in a relatively large city now, 225,000. I've also lived in small towns. With Kevin being a physician, he practiced medicine in rural Oklahoma. Now, I thought a town of 1,500 was small, but while Kevin was driving, the above sign caught my eye. This is a REALLY small town!!!

I also LOVE that fact that in Montana and Wyoming they put the elevation of the town on the signs. I found that unique!

Can you tell I was bored when I actually let Kevin drive some of the trip?!! I was taking pictures of anything!!!!!!!!!


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

24 Years Later......

Cave of the Winds, a very cool place, pun intended! Kevin and I went there on our Honeymoon 24 years ago. We hiked all over the Rocky Mt. National Forest. That was then, this is now.

On our way to Montana, we went through CO. Intentionally we stopped so we could take Amelia and AJ up to Pikes Peak and into Cave of the Winds. Kevin loves caves, has always been fascinated by them. I like them too, their beauty astounds me. Nature and the Lord are wondrous. Here are a few pictures from our hike into the cave.

Please remember that these are 'raw' photos. They have not been doctored or touched up in any program. I've just uploaded to the computer and thrown them onto the blog. I don't own expensive software, and have been too busy with my Mom and painting to mess with photos!!!!!!!


Monday, August 17, 2009

Zipping Away!

Big Sky Montana, Zip Lining through the mountains having a blast!!

Oh this is so much fun! Even Kevin who is afraid of heights did this!!!!! Yes, he is a pilot and he is afraid of heights. Makes no sense I know!

Anyway, if you ever get a chance to Zip, do it, it is a thrill!!!


Sunday, August 9, 2009

Did You Pop Your Ears?

This is the question I found myself asking the kids on this trip! We live at a measley elevation of 3,280' here in Lubbock. When we fly it is imperative that we 'pop' our ears. The kids have been to the New Mexico mountains skiing, but nothing like Pike's Peak.

Do You Remember This???????????

I'm not trying to date myself, but when I was a kid growing up in Chicago Sinclair Gas was very Popular. Every kid wanted to have a dinosaur!!! In Chicago I'd say around the 1970 Sinclair was bought out by if memory serves Amaco.

Imagine my Shock and Surprise when I drive into Colorado and see Sinclair gas stations all over!!! I even found a Dino for the kids!!!!!!!!!!!

Remembering the good 'old' days!!!