Friday, February 28, 2014

Happy Birthday Zachary

19 candles sure puts a lot of wax on the cake.
I suppose wax is better than toddler spit.
Eww! Toddler ...What? 
Happy Birthday Zachary
from your friends and family!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Tweet Tweet

We've gotten a huge amount of snow this winter.
I don't know how the little birds can stay warm enough to survive.
I have a birdhouse hanging from a tree in my front yard.

Look closely. Do you see the little bird perched on a branch?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Nor'Easter hits my neighborhood

Normally I get excited to see a few flakes falling from the sky.  
The ground coated in a blanket of white snow is so pretty.
This winter we have had a total of 54 inches (and rising) total accumulation of snow.
The first snow storm gave us about 7 inches of snow.
I can deal with that.
Then the snow blower broke and the entire family had to dig us out.
After we dug out, the snow plow came along and blocked our driveway.
We had to shovel again, especially around the mailbox.
Our mail lady gets mad if she can't reach the mailbox.
A few days later (after the 7 inches), another storm hit.
We got an additional 10 inches on top of that!
Once again, we dug out and the snow plow blocked our drive way in again. 
 It was at least, a four foot wall of snow.
The snowman the kids and I made from the first storm was covered up by the next.
It took six of us to shovel out the cars.
Lucky for us, Brandon's friends spent the night.
We had a few extra hands to help us.
Our neighbor came over and helped with his snowblower.
I am SO over SNOW!
Since then, we have had two more days of snowing.  Another 8-9 inches.  
To my dear friend in Australia who thinks I am lucky to get snow.
  Kerry, I'd gladly trade places with you right now!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Winter Park or Bust

Zachary and I left for Florida early Thursday morning.  We got on the Auto-Train in Virginia.  Instead of driving from PA to FL, we only had to drive to VA.  Zach's car was put onto the Auto-Train and we enjoyed the rest of the trip on the train.

Zachary is going to Full Sail University.  We found a two bedroom apartment in Winter Park, FL.

Considering how much snow we have gotten this year, I think it's rather fitting that Zachary moves to a place called Winter Park.

His winter will certainly be a walk in the park.  Lucky boy!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Sledding with Brandon

 What better to do on a snow day than go sledding!
Brandon was off from school and went out to play with the girls.
I found a sled hidden in the back of the garage, full of cob webs.
It's been for quite a few years that is was used because we haven't had huge amount of snow fall in six years.
All my day care girls love Brandon.  They laugh and screech at his playful antics.
He is very good with them.
 I'm surprised the girls were able to hang on for so long. =)
 On a side note: these pictures were taken the day after his hair dye misadventure.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Leaving the nest

Zachary is leaving today for Full Sail University near Orlando, FL.
5 days before his 19th birthday.

He will be studying… an 18 month program… straight through… without many breaks…

1,071 miles 

19 hours away

At first we were going to take two cars and drive the distance.  Since it is far away from our home we decided to take that AutoTrain.  Amtrak has a train we can take from 30th Street Station directly to Orlando.  Zachary's car will travel with us on the train and we won't have the stress of driving. 

I have been keeping myself busy by making a list of things he will need.  (It's a long list!)  Not only will he need small things like utensils, pots and pans, bathroom towels, etc… We will need to find him a bed, couch, dinning table, desk, chairs and TV stand.   A friend had a morbid great idea to look in a consignment store.  He had a good point when he said that a lot of elderly people live in Florida.  When they pass, many families do not want or need the furniture and we may be able to find good, cheap furniture.

The housing department of the college is looking for a roommate.  That will help cut the cost of rent.  I didn't realize how expensive an apartment is in Florida.  Zachary has been working and saved up quite a bit of money.  Unfortunately that won't last long.

As the date approaches, I can't help but cry. I know I should be excited for him. In a way I suppose I am.   I realize that it's a natural part of life for your children to leave the nest and lead their own lives.  It doesn't make it any easier for a mother. I am having a difficult time letting go.


Monday, February 17, 2014

Steel City Cup Tournament

We drove 5 hours to Pittsburgh for a tournament Brandon's travel team participated in.
I wish we would have had more time to tour the city. 
There were a lot of sites I would have liked to see.
Photo Credit: Todd Miller
Brandon's team played in the consolation game (3rd vs. 4th). The consolation game was on the same day as Super Bowl night.  Todd wasn't happy about going away the weekend of the Super Bowl.
Even though Todd was grumpy about the Super Bowl, he did admit that he had a great weekend with the other parents.
During one of the games, Brandon hit his head pretty hard during a boarding penalty (which is a penalty on the other player).  Brandon was having severe headaches. I wouldn't let him play during one of the games and let him sleep.
Brandon is a defenseman and captain of his team.  He was upset that he couldn't play.
I like when Brandon knocks another player over as if they weigh like a butterfly.
 He is really good of helping the goalie keep the puck out of the net,
 and is not afraid not knock a few kids over.
That's Brandon's rear end sticking up. ;-)

 He was not happy with the call the ref made.
In the end it didn't matter because his team won 3rd place!
As far as the Super Bowl is concerned, we made it home before kick off.  
Me?  I didn't care one way or the other.  
Now if it was the Stanley Cup…. we'd have a serious issue!