Category: Family

Recent Posts
Family, Featured, Holidays

Everybody’s waitin’ for the man with the bag

It’s that time of year, once again! Time to give thanks, to gather with friends and family, and time to celebrate the fresh start of a new year. I want to take this opportunity to wish everyone a happy holiday season and a terrific 2020!

It seems like every Christmas season has one holiday song that gets played on repeat, for some odd reason. And I know everybody is talking about how this is the 25th anniversary of Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You… But for me it has to be (Everybody’s Waitin’ For) The Man With The Bag as sung by Kay Starr. This one just keeps following me around! I don’t get to choose the song…the song chooses me. 😀

Below, I’ve shared a few videos from our recent Florida theme park trips. First up, Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s. Join Shrek, Fiona, Gru, the Minions, and many other Universal Studios characters as they celebrate the season.

Earlier that day we attended The Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular and got to hang with the citizens of Whoville.

And finally in the evening we enjoyed a holiday performance from Mannheim Steamroller.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!

This was 2018…

So, what a year it’s been. My family and I have seen more change this year than ever before. In April of this year we started our trek south to central Florida. There have been so many ups and downs throughout the year, but I wouldn’t change anything.

It’s been a great change of climate! I do not miss the snow! And as of yet, I’m not tired of the heat. The hardest part? Missing our friends and family. However, there are just so many things to see and do around central Florida — and not just Disneyworld and Universal. I’ve had so much good food — and put on a little weight in the process. Here’s a sampling of some of the sights we’ve seen, some of things we’ve experienced, and maybe a few familiar faces from 2018:

(There might be a picture or two of some food in there too!)

College Hunt, Final Edition: Our SCAD Bee

After a one week delay, classes are underway at SCAD, the Savannah College of Art and Design. We are so proud of Allison for being accepted to this college! Tina and I attended family orientation sessions on Sunday where we were incredibly impressed by the staff and faculty, facilities, and overall planning and coordination of the school.

We were able to keep in contact with representatives at the college during Hurricane Irma by using a variety of online/social media outlets. The parent Facebook page, SCAD’s twitter account, and of course the school website at were all valuable resources during the week of uncertainty. Even upon arriving at the school, with all the chaos of registration and getting kids moved in over a shortened weekend — the staff did a fantastic job.

For those not familiar with SCAD (me, a couple of years ago!) here is a video shown during parent orientation that provides a glimpse into the school:

You can see more SCAD videos on their YouTube channel and at SCAD TV.

When we arrived at check in, there was a large presence of SCAD personnel ready to assist and answer any questions we had. There was a party-like atmosphere setting everyone at ease in this new environment. We had some time to explore Savannah and visit the on-campus bookstore, Ex Libris. Shortly after that we arrived at Allison’s new dorm to move her in. There was a long line of vehicles going in and going out, but the security and staff at SCAD had the line moving efficiently. By the time we got to Allison’s building we were the only car unloading at that location. SCAD had organized move-in teams with students volunteering to help move freshmen in. With assistance, we had Allison moved into her new room in no time.

Thanks to SCAD for the wonderful experience! And here’s to four successful years at Allison’s new home!



Family, Movies

Take a break… with Monsters vs. Aliens

Wow! Things have certainly been busy around here… I haven’t posted in forever.  There’s just been too much life lately.  Dance, baseball, work, school, etc.  Too nuts.

Today, Richie and Tedy began replacing our roof after February’s nasty storm.  I appreciate the help they’ve provided, and I hope they get things wrapped up tomorrow.  I’ve been relegated to clean-up duty and gopher during this project.  I’m not exactly a handyman.

So anyway, I definitely wanted to mention “Monsters vs. Aliens” that we went to see last weekend. It was a pretty good movie.  I’ve always liked animated movies, and this one’s good. Not great, but good.  The kids were entertained, and that’s the main thing.

To me, the one thing the movie lacked is “Aliens” — there was one alien, who cloned himself multiple times, thus creating “aliens.”  I would have liked five different aliens, one that could have been beaten by some special ability of each monster.  Like Susan could have fought some big alien, and B.O.B. could have fought some Jell-O-type alien, etc.  But I guess that would have taken away from the story a little bit.  But still when I hear “Monsters vs. Aliens” I picture an all-out battle for suprremecy.  But that’s just me.

The kids loved it, and the animation is amazing.  I didn’t get to see it in 3D because my local theater doesn’t support it, but the one in Morgantown does.  It may just be worth the repeat trip to see it in 3D.

Event, Family

Idlewild Park

So, a couple of weeks ago we headed to Idlewild park in Ligonier, Pa.  It’s a nice little family park that includes Storybook Forest and Soakzone, but we didn’t do either of those this time.allison-dance-idlewild

Allison dances with a local dance group, and this year they performed their routine at Idlewild.  They usually have a trip at the end of the year after their recital.

Like I said, Idlewild is a nice little park.  There a few fun rides… quite a few for little kids in Racoon Lagoon.  There are no blazingly fast roller coasters, but there are a couple that are appropriate for kids around Ryan’s age.

He’s actually getting too big for the kiddie rides.  He rode around in the airplanes and drove the little cars, but he just looks too big.

We got quite a bit of rain in the afternoon, and our day was cut a little short.  But the kids had a good time while we were there.  More photos on the Photos page…


Wild, Wonderful West Virginia

Okay, I admit it.  I’m not much of a mountain man.  My idea of “getting back to nature” is taking a trip to Niagara Falls and relaxing to the sound of the waterfalls.CIMG0216  But last weekend we met up with friends and family and went to Jellystone Park in Elkins.

I don’t get much out of camping, although I did enjoy the company.  I had fun playing cards and riding bikes and generally taking it easy.  I don’t enjoy sleeping in a camper.  I didn’t sleep too well.  But at least my allergies were held in check this time.

The kids had a great time.  They did a little swimming and even did a little river rafting.  We did a little sight-seeing around the area and visited the fish hatchery.  The kids would wave their arms in the air over the fish and the fish would jump around like crazy, expecting to be fed.

You can see more photos on the photo page.


Well, there goes the free time…

We picked up a Speed Stacks set yesterday from Target.


Now, the competition is on! It really is kinda silly, but unfortunately it is addictive.  Keep in mind, we are all beginners.  So those of you that rock at this, don’t laugh at our times.  For example,  right now, Allison holds the time for a best 3-6-3, at 6.74 seconds.  I had it for about ten minutes when I had a 6.90.  But I will be back at it again shortly…

This is what happens when your XBox 360 spends a little time in Texas.


Crazy House

It’s a little crazy here tonight… I think that there are more kids than adults… Allison is having her ninth birthday party tomorrow and she has invited a couple of friends to spend the night.  So, it’s just a little crazy in here.

I always hate to say "if you look on the sidebar" in a post, because I change this site so often that it’s probably not going to be there long, but "having said that…"

If You Look At The Sidebar you will notice a Biggest Loser-type scale.  This is because a group of us (eight, I think) are trying to lose weight along with the Biggest Loser Million Pound Match-Up.  Some of us (not me) are doing better than others.  I’ve lost three pounds so far, but at one time I had lost over five.  And I’ve put some back on.  You can see our Biggest Loser page here.


New (well, new to me) vehicle

Well, we broke down (no pun intended) and bought a “new” vehicle yesterday.  I put the “new” in quotes because it is only new to us.  We got a 2005 Saturn L300.  Our van was really getting rough and we were able to salvage enough out of it to make it worthwhile to get another car.


It seems like a nice vehicle.  Only time will tell, I guess.

In other news… The Mountaineers escaped with a victory last night, beating Cincinnati 28 to 23.

Go Mountaineers!