Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Fun - Recession Style

I don't know if you all got the memo....

but this country is in a recession.

Don't let this news get you down though,

we discovered this weekend, that it doesn't take a lot of money to have fun.

Going to the park doesn't cost a dime.

(Unless you count the KFC that daddy just had to have for a picnic lunch!)
Plus, if you are there long enough, your reluctant child may finally work up the courage to go down the big slide.

We always have a swing'n good time.

And if you can't afford to fly on an airplane over the holiday weekend, just pretend you are, at the airplane museum.
I wish I was short enough to stand under the wing!

Or you can make your little man's dreams come true, and let him explore a train, in the rain.
And take lots and lots and lots of pictures because it was ridiculously cute!
You can go on a drive, or pick some "flowers" for your mommy.

But if the indoors suit you better, make a mess!
No pants.....One shoe..... Lot's of fun!

Snapping some pictures of your wee ones, before heading out to church, is FREE!
But beware.....they all won't turn out perfect.

Food is always a good addition to any kind of event. And what's better than some good old fashion spoon lick'in!

Corn on the cob, never fails to bring a smile!

And if you are still not satisfied, treat yourself to some Pigs in Blanket!

Here is my recipe:
First, lay your piggies out on a blanket. Make sure they tuck their arms to the side.
Then start to roll 'em up! They might giggle a little bit, but make sure they can't get out!
If they get a little nervous, let the daddy hog show 'em how it's done.
And there you have it! Two Piggies in a Blanket!

Always a hit!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Our Trip to the Holy Land

We started out the trip with a BANG!
As if 17 hours in the air isn't enough, we added an extra 12 hours of traveling time when Delta couldn't get their crap together.

*2 hours waiting for our delayed flight
*3 hours sitting on the plane at the gate while they tried to fix some broken piece of the airplane
* 7 hours of waiting in a terminal in the middle of the night for a new plane

It is a long story and I hope to never have to relive the horribleness of it all. I love this picture of Katherine sleeping on the floor of the Atlanta airport!

We did make it eventually, and it was well worth it!

I took lots of pictures.
And by lots, I mean thousands.
Here are a few of my favorites.

Dipping our feet in the Sea of Galilee.

I can't even describe to you how gorgeous the River Jordan is. See those people getting baptized? They all came out a little "see through", if you know what I mean.

On Mt. Tabor with Nazareth behind us.

At Ceasarea on the Mediterranean coast. It was beautiful. Here are all the men in our group singing Ye Elders of Israel. They attracted quite the crowd.

We were sitting on the beach, learning all about Caesarea, when 4 enormous fighter jets flew over us breaking the sound barrier. We seriously thought we were being bombed, they were so close to the ground and so incredibly loud! I took this picture right before they came, Vince almost fell off his rock when they flew over us!

One of my favorite places was Capernaum. It was on the Sea of Galilee and was spectacular!

In Bethlehem inside the Church of the Nativity. The cave where Jesus was born.

Camel time.
O Jerusalem. It was really windy on the Mount of Olives.

Dead Sea. My favorite.
You cannot drown in the Dead Sea. We are all floating. No matter how hard you try to stand up, you just float. It was so fun. And the water felt like a hot bath.

We had the opportunity to go to an active archeolocial site that is not open to the public yet. They have found amazing underground caves dating back 400BC.

Masada was Vince's favorite spot. Even though it was RIDICULOUSLY HOT that day! If you have never heard the story of Masada (I should have done some homework before the trip) you should check it out. Amazing.

The Garden Tomb. I have never seen anything so amazing in my life. The feeling in there was incredible.

And I thought I was hot! Seriously, it was like 110 degrees that day! I learned that people in Israel are SERIOUS about their religion.

Garden of Gethsemane

The Dome of the Rock, where Abraham was to sacrifice Isaac. They don't let tourists inside anymore. And around the grounds of the Dome, men and women are not allowed to touch.

The Western Wall/Wailing Wall. Incredible.

Abby making sure this arch was secure at the Pools of Bethesda.

No matter how far away from home I travel, I am always able to find some of my favorite things. Diet Coke and shopping!

And of course, we ended the trip with another airplane fiasco. The temperature on the flight home from Tel Aviv to JFK was about 45 degrees, with -50 degree breezes coming through the Emergency Doors. We seriously froze to death for 12 hours. Here are Liz and I with our hoods up trying not to freeze. Vince was so desperate for warmth that he sneaked up to first class and stole one of the comforters off an empty seat.

What I Learned:

*Jesus was born in a cave. I must have slept through that lesson in seminary. I have never felt so stupid in my life. I always thought he was born a wooden stable. I am throwing away my nativity stable and I am hunting for a large rock with a hole in it!

*Not all Middle Easterners are terrorists. In fact, most of them are extremely nice.

*It's HOT in Israel.

*Don't shave your legs before getting into the Dead Sea, ouch!

*The Dead Sea doesn't have sand on the bottom, it's covered in rock salt.

*Heat stroke is a serious thing.

*Golgotha is now a bus stop.

*If you think American Ice Cream is good, wait til you try an Israeli Magnum Bar

*European tourists are very pushy and need to be introduced to the T-shirt bra.

"No Smoking" signs mean NOTHING over there!

I learned so much about Christ's life on this trip. It was unbelievable and most definitely a trip of a lifetime. I hope to never forget the feelings I had while there. Thanks Mom and Dad for the amazing chance to walk where the Savior walked.