Saturday, March 31, 2012

Dinner with the family.....

Tonight was my Aunt and Uncle's last night in Florida so we got together and went to dinner. The evening was beautiful and we were seated outside. It was a lot of fun. I felt old as both my older daughter's brought their boyfriends. My girl's are growing up and as much as it is wonderful it is bittersweet. I love snapping pictures of my little niece though when I need my little girl fix. She is beautiful and such a girly girl.
One side of the table.

The other.
Uncle Vern and Aunt Beth.
Natalie and Mckenlee (poor Nat her little sister is taller than her. lol)
My beautiful niece Hannah

Home Sweet Home...

We are home, we left North Carolina Friday after breakfast and a quick workout at the gym.
Funny enough the drive back seemed longer than the ride there. Isn't it usually the other way around? There are just few things small things that I want to remember from this trip so I am going to list them here.

1. Whenever we would go around a bend on the mountain (to fast as far as I was concerned) as I was begging Dave to slow down the girl's (and later Dave hopped on the band wagon) would squeal
"weeeeeee, Maxwell we're home." from the Geico commercial with the pig.

2. Every morning when we would wake up we would hear a woodpecker pecking away at his home. He would go at it for at least two hours every morning. It became part of our morning to wake up and listen to the "woodpecker music". I tried several times to get a picture of him but every time he saw me on the balcony with the camera he would fly away.

3. Every time we would go up and down the mountain McKenlee would announce that her ears "were popping" we kept laughing and telling her "we know McKenlee ours are too" but she still told us every time. Towards the end of the week I jumped on her band wagon and started making the announcement when mine would pop.

4. As we were getting ready to go canoeing and were getting our last minute instructions on the rocks next to our canoes was a big black snake sunning himself. That was reassuring... LOL

It feels good to be home but I will miss that mountain weather. Florida is as warm as ever...

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Horse back riding and Gem Mining...

We went horse back riding today at the Whitewater Equestrian Center. We took a 1 hour trail ride through the forest/woods. It was beautiful. Our guide shared with us some of the local history. He had great Settler/Indian stories that took place right where we were riding. He also showed us some of the plant life and described how the Indians and early settlers would use different plants for medicinal purposes. It was really interesting.

We had awesome horses mine was named Rueger, Dave's was Snicker's, Natalie's was Bubba, and McKenlee's was Sebastian. Thank goodness they knew the trail so well because there were a lot of ups and downs and rocky terrain. I was definitely a little nervous at first. (When am I not right lol )

The girl's loved it and said it was one of the highlights of the trip. I was so glad I was able to get on and off Rueger as easily as I did. I guess all this working out I've been doing has helped me to be more limber.

We also did some gem mining. That was fun too. I really thought it was just going to be something the girl's were interested in but Dave really surprised me. He was as excited about sifting through the sand for gems as the girls were.

Tomorrow the plan is just to chill out and rest up for the drive home Saturday. Dave is really pushing to leave for home tomorrow but I am not interested in catching any Friday afternoon rush hour traffic. So we'll see....

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


We drove to Ashville today it's about two hours from where we are staying. We contemplated the Biltmore as we have heard it is a must see. I guess it will have to be a must see for next time. I knew the girl's were itching to get some shopping in. Usually whenever we go on vacation we take one day and find a mall. We buy the girls a few things and it has become a tradition they both really look forward too. (of course who wouldn't lol) So we headed to Ashville Mall and the girl's were thrilled because it had all the stores they love. We then had a late lunch/early dinner at a little deli called McAllister's. It was delicious, it was kind of like a Panera type set up but with a much bigger variety of meals. We then headed back to the townhouse. Again, I was thrilled not to be heading up the mountain in the dark. The girl's then put on their new clothes to show us. Some things they never grow out of and I love it. Ever since they were small whenever we would buy them clothes (or my Mom would) they would always come home and put on a fashion show for us. While they don't strut around and introduce each other like they did when they were little they still enjoy showing us everything they purchased. I guess sometimes you do get to hold onto to a little bit of their childhood if your lucky......

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tuesday in NC

We went canoeing today on the French Broad River it was so much fun. The weather was perfect, the water was crystal clear and the best part of all was I didn't tip it over. This I have to tell you was my biggest fear. I wasn't afraid because I can't swim, I consider myself a strong swimmer. It wasn't because I was afraid of alligators or poisonous snakes, I was informed that NC has neither. In the river anyway, they do have venomous snakes but not ones in the water like Fl. I was petrified because of 1. the embarrassment. and 2. The water was freezing cold. Fortunately, after about 15 minutes in the canoe I realized it was much more stable than I had anticipated. I also chose my partner with care. Bless my youngest daughter's heart as fantastic as she is and as many wonderful qualities that she possesses gracefulness is not one of them. (she takes after her Mother in that way) So I knew that the last thing that I wanted was the two of us in a canoe together. So I went with Natalie and Dave went with Mckenlee. That by far was probably my best decision of the day. That Natalie of mine was a canoe natural. In McKenlee's defense I have to add that Natalie has a little more experience than the rest of us. (although not much, she has canoe'd with friends before while camping) She pretty much just told me what to do and remembered everything the instructor guy told us before we left verbatim. (I was so nervous beforehand it kind of went in one ear and out the other) The river was actually a pretty slow flowing thing with just a few faster flowing rocky obstacle areas. He assured me the entire 3 hour ride we were on is what they consider a level 1. It was so much fun and we laughed so hard. I would definitely do it again...

Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday in the mountains

Today another beautiful morning in the mountains. Dave and I headed to the gym first thing to swim some laps in the pool. (it's adults only from 9 to 10am.) Then we headed back to have some breakfast with the girls. We then visited one of the local waterfalls, Whitewater Falls. It was so beautiful. Then we were not really sure what we wanted to do so in true "Dave fashion" he suggested we just get on HWY 64 and keep driving into the next town "Brevard." So we did and that ended up being a really great idea. We found ourselves almost walking back in time. There was about a 4 block vicinity where there were a bunch of little shops and restaurants. We did a little shopping then had lunch at this adorable fifties style diner. We then headed over to the only movie theater I think in about a 45 mile area. It was really old fashioned in style and only showed one movie as they only had one auditorium. Luckily, it was the movie we wanted to see. "The Hunger Games." I loved it, I thought they really did justice to the book and took a lot of the violence out which was good for me because I thought the book was really violent. I was really nervous that it was going to be dark when we headed back up the mountain. I'm just not liking the idea of driving up that mountain in the dark. We got lucky though and made it home before the sun set. I must be getting a little used to it though because this last time heading up didn't seem so bad.

Going canoeing tomorrow. Should be a good day.....

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sunday morning in the mountains.....

We woke to a beautiful cool (almost cold morning) in NC. The heat even kicked on. We headed to the gym because I am determined to continue with my workouts and healthy eating habits. I got on the treadmill for my hour and at the end decided I was going to run a little. Then I scared myself half to death (because I am such a hypochondriac) because my heart rate was so high. So after a small panic attack I realized that I was going to live. LOL We then headed back to the townhouse for breakfast. After we drove around to check everything out. We hiked around a beautiful lake then headed over to the golf course. We decided it would be fun to play a family round of golf. Dave was thrilled because it is one of his favorite things to do. We had a blast and I have to tell you playing golf is way harder than it looks. I think the girl's favorite part was driving the golf carts. It was getting really chilly so we headed back and I put on a pot of chili while Dave took the girl's fishing in the little lake right by our town home. Apparently, McKenlee was quite the fisher girl as she caught the only fish which was a whopping 2 inches long. LOL We are heading to check out some of the local waterfalls tomorrow. We also have canoeing planned for Tuesday and horseback riding planned for Thursday.....

Saturday, March 24, 2012

We have arrived....

We are in North Carolina and it is gorgeous. We are in the mountains and the town home we are staying in is beautiful. It is a tri-level unit with wood floors and dark wood furnishings. It has a REAL fireplace. The girl's couldn't wait to get firewood and smore ingredients. We are way more rural then I imagined. It is the first time ever that we checked in like 4 miles away from where we are actually staying. It was also very hard to find, but as ever Dave found it. He is so good that way. The drive up went very well and seem to go very quickly. Dave did the first 5 hours and I planned on doing the next five hours but about 4 hours in we started heading up the mountain and that was the end of that. It was freaking me out with all the winding roads and over looks that were hundreds of feet in the air. Not to mention all the locals behind me getting pretty upset I was driving so slow. So needless to say I had to hand over the wheel to Dave. We also later found out that we are in a dry county. We are going to have to drive about 45 minutes to buy beer. LOL Looks like it is going to be a "dry holiday" for Dave. LOL We had dinner at the restaurant on the resort property and since it is off season we were the only people there on a Saturday night if you can believe that. That was a first for us. We are all pretty exhausted so we are heading to bed...

Friday, March 23, 2012

Holiday Makers R Us....

We are heading off on "holiday" as my husband would say. So that makes us officially "holidaymakers" (another English phrase) We are so ready and very excited. We are heading to the mountains of North Carolina. We are looking forward to some cooler weather. (we have had such a mild winter)

Looking forward to some lazy days enjoying my family. Not looking forward to not having Sydnee with us again. Alas, this is what happens when your children grow up. I guess I better get used to it.

I'm going t try to post everyday to kind of keep a diary. Wish me luck with that I will need it. LOL

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Family Picnic in Englewood....

Sunday we had our annual family picnic down at Englewood Beach. Every March my Aunt and Uncle come down for three weeks and stay at this cute little beach front hotel. It's not real fancy but it is quiet and very peaceful. It's a private beach so it's never crowded. We always have a fantastic day when we go and this year was no exception. We missed Sydnee of course because she was at college and didn't come home this last weekend. But it was a beautiful day!!!!

McKenlee flying the kite. The beach is always the best place to fly a kite don't ya think. The sea breeze makes it so easy and as a bonus there are no trees.

Lounging and looking in the sand for little mole crabs for bait.

We went snorkling (the water was crystal clear) and found some ocean hermit crabs. We kept them in the bucket for a little while to watch them then I had the girl's put them back in the ocean, Lord knows we have enough pets. LOL

Here is Natalie holding a mole crab. They are so cute sometimes it's hard to use them as bait. None of us will bait the hook, Dave has to do it. LOL

Natalie digging for shells and mole crabs...

What a wonderful day!!!

Friday, March 9, 2012

March Madness

Hello Internet remember me? Yup, I'm the one that really was going to blog more this year. umm, well you know how that goes. As I've always been one to make lots of attempts before I get it right I'm going to try to be better at this. You know I'm a big fan of bullet points when I haven't posted for awhile so here we go.

  • Sydnee has been home this week for her spring break. Like always it has been great having her home.

  • Natalie and I joined the local gym right up the road. She had been bugging Dave and I for awhile to get her a gym membership and since she needed an adult to be on the membership with her I signed up too. It's been something we do together and wait for it I have really liked doing this with her. I needed to do something anyway because I committed to Sydnee that I would do the Disney princess 1/2 marathon with her next February. So it has begun. I was a little troubled last week when I was bragging to Dave how quickly I have gone from a 2.5 on the treadmill to a 3.2. I have figured out that I have to get to a 3.8 pace on the treadmill to maintain the 16 minute mile rule that Disney has for their marathons (or they throw you off the course embarrassing ) so I was expressing that I was moving up pretty quickly since at the time I had only been going to the gym about two weeks. Of course he comes back with "well you know that you will have to maintain that for 3 hours and 28 minutes." WHAT, REALLY? You're kidding right? No, he wasn't so that was kind of a reality check. But you know what? Oh well, I'm doing it. I'm up to 45 minutes now so you know, only 165 more to go. Good thing I have got a year!!!

  • I'm watching what I eat again too and it's amazing how much better you feel when you are eating right. Who knew??? LOL

  • Little League softball has started back up for McKenlee (Natalie decided not to play this year much to my disappointment) so between travel ball and rec ball we are spending the weekends and many week nights at the ball fields.

  • Natalie has a boyfriend. (She's going to kill me for that one) but I can't help it my shy girl has a boyfriend. His name is Thor and he seems like a great kid. Any kid who plays and talks to my little guys always score's brownie points with me. My little Elijah thinks he is awesome.

  • We are heading to the mountains of North Carolina at the end of this month for spring break. We can't wait, we are very excited. I never thought I would say this but we are hoping it will be cold. (not freezing mind you, we are after all from Florida) But we would like some cooler weather so we can wear some cozy sweaters and boots and hike those gorgeous mountains without sweating our booties off. We have had such a warm winter (my air has been on and off almost all winter) that we would love a little climate change.

  • I guess that kind of sums everything up. Have a wonderful weekend.......