Saturday, July 27, 2013

Self Portrait with Gnomes

I took this picture last weekend at Rock City; it was in that store near the entrance--what's it called?--where they have all the gnomes and fairy house stuff. It's my reflection in the mirror behind the gnomes.

The store is called Woodland Wonders; I just looked it up on the Web site.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Real Live Brady Bunch

I found this recently, stuck in a book (I often use ticket stubs as book marks). I was given a pair of tickets to see "The Real Live Brady Bunch" at Center Stage as a reward for something or other at my job at ExecuTrain. (I saw quite a few shows this way in the early '90s, in fact, including "Brigadoon," starring one of the guys from "The Dukes of Hazard.")

Anyway, it was 20 years ago today that I saw this, for whatever it's worth. I don't remember it being particularly great, but for a show I didn't have to pay for, it was okay.

Monday, July 22, 2013

And the dreams that you dare to dream...

I went outside last night to check the mail, and when I turned around I saw this double rainbow right over our house.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Rock City

We go to Rock City as often as we can, but it's been over a year since we went there last. We decided to rectify this situation by going this weekend, so we drove up Saturday afternoon, with the intention of spending a little time at Rock City Saturday night (they stop letting you in at 8:00 p.m., but don't kick you out until 9:00 or 9:30) and a lot of time there Sunday.

Unfortunately, there was a 40 minute delay on I-285 due to construction near Roswell Road, which is a very cranky-making thing, but once we got past that it was an easy ride to Chattanooga, and we checked into our hotel around 6:00. We spent a few minutes settling into our room (Jessica has a strong nesting instinct, and wanted everything to be just right), and then went to Rock City. We bought an annual pass for the family, so we can go back often without having to pay to get in each time.

After we walked around for about an hour, we headed back towards our hotel, stopping at Fazzoli's for supper on the way. We didn't eat until after 9:00, and the girls weren't asleep until after 11:00, the latest they've been up in a long, long time.

As I type this on Sunday morning, Elyse is still asleep on the bed, Jessica is playing with the Nook, and Anna is getting dressed, having just woken up.

Here are some pictures from our visit last night:

Saturday, July 20, 2013

"Dolly Parton locked my babies in the bedroom!"

I have a Dolly Parton's Greatest Hits CD that I play in the car sometimes; a while ago, maybe more than a year, Elyse fell in love with the first song on the CD, "Joshua."After hearing the song about a million times, and watching a video of it on YouTube (a live version from 1971, complete with an introduction by Porter Wagner), Dolly Parton became one of Elyse's imaginary friends.

Her favorite imaginary friend.

We hear a lot about Dolly Parton around our house, including what Elyse told us a little while ago:

"Dolly Parton locked my babies in the bedroom!"

Elyse gave Dolly Parton a time-out, but Dolly Parton remains unrepentant; she went right back and locked the babies in the bedroom again.

Life with our little girls is always interesting.

Friday, July 19, 2013

A Solo Trip to Pigeon Forge

Since the summer is almost over, at least in so much as Anna has to go back to work next week, I took this opportunity to go on a drive for a couple of days. So, I set out yesterday morning at 7:00 for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg, and Pigeon Forge.

I had a wonderful drive up, even if I did miss my family some of the time. I made it to the Oconaluftee Welcome Center at around 11:00, bought a T-shirt, and drove to Clingman's Dome--which was very, very busy. I made the whole walk to the observation tower (there are some pictures below), which is no mean feat for a guy in my shape. (I need to work on getting in better shape so I can do that walk with my kids someday, hopefully in two or three years.)

After that, I drove north through GSMNP to Gatlinburg, which was insanely busy. I had thought I might stop, but the number of cars and people and shops all crammed into a relatively small space filled me with anxiety, so I kept going towards Pigeon Forge.

Pigeon Forge was also busy, but is more stretched out and has a four-lane road, so it doesn't seem nearly as crowded. Still, I didn't stop anywhere except a place called Book Warehouse.

I did stop at the Books-A-Million in Seveirville, where I bought Robert A. Heinlein's The Star Beast, a novel I read thirty years ago and remember loving. I've been looking for it for a while, actually.

I spent the night at the Quality Inn in Clayton, Georgia, which is where I am right now as I type this. Since I need to check out in 20 minutes, I'll end here, with the addition of 15 pictures I took yesterday:

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Elyse Coloring, July 16, 2013

Here are four pictures of just what the title says, Elyse coloring:

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Mommy and Elyse in Minnesota

Today Mommy and Elyse returned from their week-long visit to Minnesota. They had a good time, but are glad to be back home, and Jessica and I are glad to have them back.

Here are some pictures from their adventure:

First, a couple of pictures of Elyse with two of her cousins:

Elyse riding a tricycle in Gramma and Grampa's driveway:

Elyse again with two of her cousins (though one of the cousins is different in this picture):

Elyse helping Aunt Theresa feed Baby Addy:

Monday, July 8, 2013

Self Portrait, July 7, 2013

Not the most flattering picture of me, but this is what I look like, wearing my blue Stone Mountain T-shirt and sitting in the rocking chair in front of the blinds.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Zoo Atlanta

Saturday, while Mommy and Elyse were still in Minnesota (they'll be back Tuesday), Jessica and I went to Zoo Atlanta. We only stayed a couple of hours because it started to rain (this whole week has been plagued by rain), but we had a good time anyway.