Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Brandon, the Sailor Man!

I received an email last week from my nephew, Brandon. He will be home in the States for leave from December 27th through January 10th. I canNOT wait to wrap my arms around him and hug him tight. The girls go back to school on January 3rd, so I will have to get my visit in during the beginning of his leave.

Brandon is stationed on the USS George Washington in Japan. He was on the aircraft carrier when the Tsunami hit Japan back in the Spring. Luckily, he was far enough away that they only felt a little bump.

He told me during one of our phone conversations that they can feel when the ship hits a whale. I cannot imagine something that BIG would be phased by a whale. I guess it would be like a car going over a speed bump.

I think about him every day and pray he will stay safe and in good health. I know he has struggled with being away from home. Brandon has such a good heart and loves easily.

Please keep him in your prayers.

Maybe in my next care package, I will send him some spinach ... ha ha ha!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

St. Mary's First Annual Choral Festival

A few weeks ago the girls were asked to participate in a choral festival at St. Mary's Catholic School. Bethany jumped on it but Sarah didn't want to give up her soccer game. She reluctantly agreed.

Unfortunately, they were served pizza for lunch during their rehearsals. With the grease from the pizza, standing tons and bright lights, Bethany was unable to perform after ALL the rehearsals. But Sarah stood proud and sang loud.

Here are a few clips of the songs they sang.

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August 15, 2011

BACK TO SCHOOL!!!! Yippee ... which means back to the gym for me ... YES!!! I have missed my time in the gym over the summer. I started out well enough going but then just fell away from it. But I am BACK and strong.


Sarah is in 4th grade and Bethany is starting 5th. My babies ... boo-hoo!


Check out those WHITE shoes!!! Maybe I will try to keep you updated on the "life" of the shoes ... :)


Friday, August 19, 2011

Visits with Grandparents

This year we decided to let go and allow the girls to spend a little alone time with the grandparents. It really wasn't a hard decision to make ... hee hee.

On Saturday, July 23rd I dropped the girls off with Grandpa and Grandma Burkhardt. The girls had fun going to church, going out to eat with family, swimming, .... I really don't know what all they got to do but I know they had a really good time. They also got to visit with Grandpa Lonnie where they got to milk a goat. Unfortunately no one thought to take a picture for me. :(

Tuesday night when we talked to the girls, Bethany told me that she was not ready to come home and didn't miss me. I hope she was just kidding but I have a feeling she meant it a little bit anyway.

On Wednesday, July 27th Grandpa and Grandma Burkhardt came to visit with us for a few days and brought the girls back with them. I'm not sure how the trip went but am glad that it was them and not me in the car for over 9 hours ... LOL!!! We had a really great, relaxing visit with them.

On Monday, August 1st Grandpa and Grandma pulled out with the girls in tow. They were taking the girls to Nana and Pop's for a stay. Again glad it was them and not ME!!

While they were with Nana and Pop, they went fishing, swimming, horseback riding ... I got phone pictures on a daily basis showing me how much fun they were having.

Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge Vacation

We kept our vacation simple ... well, we thought it was going to be simple ... this year and headed to Tennessee for Dollywood and Splash Country. Upon our arrival on Saturday, July 9th, we started going through ALL the brochures for the area. We came across the Mysterious Mansion in Gatlinburg. The girls just HAD to go. They wouldn't talk about anything else. So we went into Gatlinburg and I dropped them off in front of the Mansion. Daddy had to go because Mommy sure WASN'T going in there. That is one thing I do NOT like ... being scared. Because it wasn't too busy, we were able to get a picture with some of the characters.





We had to take pictures next to the river.





The girls are SO crazy. Bethany wanted to act like she was shoving Sarah into the river and Sarah didn't want her touching her.



We headed back to the hotel for some pool time. It was the only night we were able to enjoy it.















On Sunday, we spent the WHOLE day at Splash Country. I didn't buy the waterproof camera this time around so was only able to get a few pictures when the girls went to the play area where the bucket dump was.



They had a BLAST!



It does look like Bethany was having fun!



Sarah poses for a picture.



On Monday, we headed to Dollywood. The first ride was the Barnstormer. The girls watched it before getting on; then decided they would ride it with Daddy.

Here they are strapping in.



First Rise ... not too bad.





2nd Rise ... still not too bad.



3rd Rise ... well, that one is getting up there.



4th Rise ... surely that is the last rise.



Nope ... 5th Rise ... now, that is up there!



Sarah and Daddy came off smiling; Bethany looked like she was in tears.



I had to get a picture after the Barnstormer.



Daredevil Falls. I cannot tell you HOW many times the girls rode this ride. I could not resist buying this picture.



I don't remember the name of this ride but the riders are trying to shoot the watchers and the watchers can shoot the riders. It was funny watching the adults running from one water gun to the next.




Our little chicks :)



Silly Pictures.






Styling Sarah!




Bad Bethany!!!



Riding ... I can't remember the names of these rides ... LOL!!! They loved the water rides.



At the Country Fair. They got Daddy on this ride with them.



The swings. The batteries were going dead on my camera and wouldn't snap fast enough to catch them. This was the only one that had both girls in it. How sad! The first time we ever went to Dollywood Sarah was 2 1/2 years old and was not tall enough to ride the swings. She was devastated. It was so special to see the smile on her face when she was able to ride the swings this time.




Every day, we said we were going to leave the parks before they closed and every day, we closed the parks. We had SO much fun watching the girls ride all the rides. We were able to get them to at least try ALL the rides. We didn't necessarily make them ride it again but we were able to get them to give each one a chance.

4th of July Festivities

On Saturday, July 2nd, the City of Greer held a 4th of July Festival. Although it was hot, we took the girls to enjoy some fun and fireworks. First up was face painting. Both girls got fireworks on their faces.




Then they did crafts. They painted stars.



See!!!!



Then it was off to the inflatables.



Here they had to race through the maze.



And they're OFF!!!



Sarah starts out ahead!



Bethany finishes off in the lead.



Sarah was just behind her.



To pass the time until the fireworks, we headed over to the park. It was SO crowded. There were so many kids, I had a hard time keeping up with mine. Luckily, they were dressed the same. Sometimes it comes in handy.





First Summer Trip

The girls and I planned a trip to see Aunt Kathy. We arrived on Monday, June 20th and didn't leave until Friday, June 24th. We had a blast! I just hope we didn't wear our welcome out because I want to go back next year. We relaxed, ate when we wanted to, shopped when we wanted to, swam when we wanted to, went to the beach when we wanted to .... We had SO much fun and appreciated SO much for Aunt Kathy entertaining us.

The first thing that happened was Butterscotch christening Aunt Kathy's sofa upon our arrival. Yep, the stupid dog hiked his leg and peed on the back of her couch. I was SHOCKED, to say the least! I could NOT believe what I was seeing as I stood there and tried to comprehend and react ALL at the same time. I said a few ugly words that I should not have said but they came out before I could stop them.

On Tuesday, we went to the beach. Luckily, Aunt Kathy still had the Boogie boards which made the girls VERY happy. Of course, I had to get a picture of them with their chosen boards before heading out into the ocean.




It took them a few tries but they figured it out. They were riding those waves like experts :)



They eventually needed a little break from the waves and made Sarah into a mermaid. Of course, Mommy helped a little.


Then Sarah wanted to sculpt a sand shark. We had to have the "funny" picture.


If we weren't at the beach, then the girls were in the pool. They played so hard everyday. I think Sarah is trying to drown Bethany ... LOL!


CANNON BALLS!!!!


My Sweet Girls!


Taking pictures of my girls from the comfort of the lounge chair.


Cutie!


We had to replace some of Aunt Kathy's noodles and we bought the max squirt thingies. Why did we do that? Looks like Bethany was after someone.


What, Mom, another picture? Geez!


Sarah always has a smile for the camera.


Bethany catches a wave.


Sarah is enjoying her ride on the wave.



The last night we enjoyed a dinner out to Reggae J's grill.





This is where Butterscotch spent ALL of his time ... inside the house.



THANK YOU, AUNT KATHY!!!! We love you ... and your pool ... hee hee!