Monday, August 10, 2009

I love New York!

New York was awesome!
I recently went to New York for my cousin's wedding. It was my daughter Jennifer, my mom, my aunt Judy and myself. I knew right from the beginning it was going to be a very fun trip. It was like traveling with Lucy and Ethel from I Love Lucy! haha.

The trip started by Scott driving us to Chicago. We stayed in a hotel there and then was up bright and early on Mon. August 3rd to catch the plane. We arrived at the Islp airport in Long Island. My cousin, Jeni picked us up from there and took us to our hotel. We were there long enough to unload the luggage and then she took us downtown Port Jefferson, Long Island to get something to eat.
After eating she had a wedding meeting so we walked around Port Jefferson. While walking we came to the Chamber of Commerce and after talking to her about our hotel we decided to check out a Bed & Breakfast. We are so glad we did! Our B&B landlords were so nice and helpful. We later ate dinner at the "The Pie". It was an Italian restaurant. We walked around for awhile and then called a taxi to take us back to the B&B.

While at the B&B mom messed up the remote control for the tv so we had to call Dan, our landlord. He is a really nice guy, a retired NY cop. He couldn't figure out what she did so he called his friend who is a big wig at Direct Tv. Him and his wife came over in like 10 minutes and fixed it in like 2 minutes! It pays to know what you are doing.

On Tuesday we had breakfast at the B & B. It was really good. Barb took us to the train station. We took the two hour train ride to Penn station in NYC. It was funny because we had to change trains once and boy if you don't know what you are doing you can get lost. Well, there was this guy with his two boys on the train and after talking amongst ourselves he over heard us talking about knowing when to get off and he said he was going there too. So we just watched for when he got up. We followed the man with the red hat to the next train and even sat behind him. It was kinda stalkish but he just laughed.

After arriving in Penn station we took a taxi to Battery Park. This is where we caught the ferry to the Statue of Liberty. After taking pictures and visiting the gift shop we took the ferry to Ellis Island. It was all so interesting! Just imagine how awful it would be to come and not speak the language and be hussled into a big room with other strangers!

We then took the ferry back to Battery Park where we bought "designer purses" from the men on the street. It was alot of fun. Then we took a taxi to Chinatown where we ate a restaurant that Dan had recommended. I had plain white rice. I made the mistake of asking for butter. At first he didn't know what I wanted and then he finally did and said, "No butter, this Chinese restaurant" It was funny.
From there we shopped in Chinatown. We asked one of the shop owners if she had any designer purses and she took us across the street, down a hall, up some stairs, down a hall and thru a door where there were tons of purses! We had a blast!

After leaving there we had so many bags full of purses that we decided to taxi back to penn station and head back to the B&B. It was really funny because the train was full so this poor man ended up sitting by us. Needless to say Aunt Judy told why we were there, where we had been, what we had bought, basically our whole trip thus far. He didn't seem to mind and laughed along with us. It did make the train ride go faster!

On Wednesday we had to catch the train so early that we didn't have time for breakfast at the B & B. We took the train into NYC and this time we took a taxi to Time Square. That was so neat but we didn't have alot of time so we didn't get to see everything. We also bought a ticket to a Double Decker bus. That was really interesting, but we didn't get to finish the entire route.
We took the train back and got ready for the Rehearsal Dinner/ Out of towners Dinner. This was held at Chad's dad's house.

On Thurs Jenn and I left mom and Aunt Judy at the B&B, stopped by the hotel and picked up my cousin Kelsey (she's 13), and we took the train back into NYC. She wanted a designer purse. We took a taxi to chinatown. Boy, was that interesting. This time we were taken into stores that had hidden doors, down stairs into secret rooms full of purses. Fun shopping!! We did this about three different times.
We then took a cab to the Empire State Building, not to see that but just to get us closer to our next destination. We walked the next 21 blocks in 22 minutes!! We were on a mission!! On our way to our next destination which was the Disney Store, we came upon Trump Towers. This is something my mom had been wanting to see so we called her and told her we were standing outside of it. We then went inside.
We finally got to the disney store and shopped there. From there we walked to Central Park. We had a hotdog from a stand there and ate it on a bench in Central Park. Hey we wanted to say we've been there! We then took a cab back to Penn station and headed back because Kelsey had to be back for pictures since she was in the wedding. We accomplished everything we wanted to in the 4 hours that we had. We had 16 minutes to spare when we got back to Penn station before our train came.
After we dropped Kelsey off at her hotel Jenn and I decided to walk to our B & B. It was really not that far it's just that it was up a hill. We stopped at each telephone pole to rest before preceding on. It was funny. It only took us 11 minutes. But carrying our purchases up the hill ugh, and it was hot too.

Then it was time for what we came to New York for in the first place. The wedding! We took a cab to Lombardi's for the wedding and reception. The wedding was beautiful. Jeni was beautiful. The reception had so much food for dinner!!! and the desserts...there was one room just for desserts!!! Jeni also had a painter there to do an abstract painting of the reception. That was really cool! I'm in the painting!!

Over all this was a very fun and interesting trip. Aunt Judy was a riot and had us laughing hysterically each night while in bed. I'd say more but what happens in New York stays in New York! hahaha.
Next time I'll be better prepared for where to shop, what to see, and plan definitely more time to stay.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Grenada Mission Trip 2009

What an awesome trip! The Lord was with us every step of the way.

We left Friday July 10th at 5:30 in the morning from church. We took two vans to Chicago to catch our flight. We arrived safely in Chicago, flew to Miami, arriving safely and everyone had there luggage. We then flew to Grenada, arriving safely and again all of our luggage arrived as well. One of the other groups that was on our flight did not receive all of their luggage. Oh boy.
There was also another group in Grenada at the same time but they came thru Puerto Rico and they had one of their members get stuck in Puerto Rico. Oh boy.
We had an absolutely marvelous week. We had no injuries, no sickness, no sunburn (and no hurricane!) Praise the Lord!

The children were amazing. They were so easy to please. A piece of candy was like giving them a really big present. The smiles, the joy, the laughter, the hugs. They loved having their pictures taken. I wish I had taken my photo printer so they could've had their picture to take with them. Maybe next time I'll take it with me. I'd love to go back to the same place!

Kerry and Terry Psinas are the missionaries from our church that we went to help with Vacation Bible School. What an awesome couple! The love and compassion they have for the people of Grenada is amazing. The Grenadian believers have so little but they are so happy.
It really makes me appreciate what I have and not complain.

The Lord picked our team and we worked amazingly together to pull off a vbs with only 18 workers and an average of 129 kids a day. Ages were 2 to 18.
Our very first day we had 69. Terry had said to expect 35 kids. Haha. O ye of little faith.
By the second day we had 105. The third day we had 129 and 25 kids were no shows! The fourth day we had 129 and the last day we had 125. Amazing. That is not what Terry expected at all! But the Lord knew! He had our energetic teens on this team at that church at the right time. We serve an awesome God.

I'm truly thankful and grateful that the Lord allowed me to go on this trip and can't wait to see what he has in store for me next.

Thank you to those that prayed for me and supported me financially.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Vacationing is great but ...there's no place like home!

Scott & I went to Negril, Jamaica for our 25th wedding anniversary.  
(Tho our anniversary really isn't til Sept. 22 we had to go when we could).

We left Monday afternoon for Chicago.  The bad thing is I hurt my back cleaning the house before we left.  I was in such pain on the drive up, I couldn't move.  By the time we arrived at our hotel in Chicago I could barely move.  We went to a walmart and bought a heating pad in hopes it would help.  I couldn't believe it.  The last time I hurt my back like that I had to get a shot of pain med and take oral pain meds.  But I didn't have any of that!  So I had to grin and bear it.
Anyways, on Tuesday we had to be at the airport like 4 am because our flight left so early.  I really don't like to fly and now I have this back pain....this was not going to be good.  Our flight was delayed by an hour and half.  Not bad I guess.  We had a couple hour delay in Charlotte North Carolina anyways, so that just took some of that time away. 
 (or so we think).
We finally arrive in Charlotte.  While in the airport we notice this family of three boys and parents.  I'm like please don't let them be sitting by us.  Well, needless to say we had these little bratty boys sitting behind us with their dad (who did not make them behave).  These boys kicked my seat the entire the entire 3 hour flight.  Not to mention the hour delay we had while sitting in the plane waiting for take off!  Ugh.  This vacation is not starting too well.  But I refuse to let it ruin any of it.
We arrive in Jamaica Tuesday afternoon.  We then have an hour and a half drive to our resort from the airport.  But it didn't seem that long because I fell asleep. (ha)
We love our resort.  Our room is right by the beach, close to the restaurant, just perfect. (granted it's not the ritz but we knew that when we booked it, we wanted quaint not luxury)
The weather is warm, sunny, and beautiful.  We lounged on the beach, walked the beach, floated in the ocean.  Oh, I can just picture it. 
 (Boy, do I wish I was there again).
We really enjoyed ourselves even tho we did get sunburned and are still peeling!!
It was a very enjoyable time and I'm so glad and thankful that my wonderful husband took me away for a whole week. 
 (I will say tho that by the last day, I was missing my family back home and realized that I really like living by my parents, having my girls at home with us, and even missed my silly dog).
Vacations are nice but there really is no place like home!
Thank you to my fabulous husband!!  I love you!!!

p.s.  I'll add pictures soon!

Friday, May 1, 2009

One trip down, three to go!

Kentucky trip:

We left sunday, April 26th for Lexington Kentucky.  Dad had a convention thing to attend so us girls, (mom, sister & myself) entertained ourselves.

  Monday the weather was absolutely beautiful.  We visited a shaker village which was really interesting.  They don't believe in marriage...everyones  considered brothers and sisters.  Anyways, we ate their famous lemon pie. YUK! can I say it again.?.YUK!  And the portions of food at this restaurant was hilarious.  They were extremely small.  But overall the whole shaker experience was very interesting. 

 From there we went to Old Friends Horse Farm.  This is a farm for retired race horses.  It was very interesting and those horses were beautiful.  One horse was actually saved from the slaughter house because of this farm. The below picture on the left is the horse that was saved.  He is blind and deaf.  The other picture is a race horse that looked like he was posing for the picture. ha.

Tuesday we spent the day shopping.  My sister was trying to find a dress.  We were not successful.  Oh well, she has time to find one around here.  We went to a micro brewery in Lexington.  That was really interesting.

Wednesday, we went looking for scrapbooking stores.  We drove a half an hour for one and then it wasn't open.  They had really weird hours.  Bummer.  And the other one was obviously just a online servious.  We eventually just spent the rest of the day looking at stores at the Lexington Center while dad was at his meeting cuz he was tired and wasn't going to be too long.  Then we spent the evening scrapping, because we had brought our stuff with us to work on our albums.  Very productive evening.

We did go to one Scrapbooking store in Lexington on either Sunday or monday I can't remember.

Thursday we headed home. Thank God for GPS it made the trip so much easier to navigate around.  We came home a different way, using the GPS, we headed to a scrapbooking store.  We spent an hour there before getting back on the road for home.  The usual 51/2 to 6 hour trip is always longer with dad because he has potty breaks every hour (which I don't mind, cuz I go too.  haha)
All in all it was an enjoyable trip.  
We had mostly nice weather, dad did fine sleeping, we were able to scrap, shop, eat and explore.
Thanks mom and dad for letting me go

Friday, April 17, 2009

Follow up to Travel or not to Travel blog

Well, it's been awhile since I've blogged.  Alot of plans are falling into place now.
Decisions have been made, prayers have been answered.
In my other blog alot was up in the air about where I was going to be able to go so here's what's happened since then.

Mom, dad, Sandy, and myself leave for Lexington, Kentucky on Sunday April 26th until Wednesday April 29th.  Not sure what we are going to do while dad's at his convention thing, but we'll probably hit the scrapbooking store there in Lexington.  

Scott & I are going on a trip for our 25th anniversary!!!!  We leave tues. May 12th and return tues. May 19th.  We are going to Negril, Jamaica.  Sun, here I come!!  Our anniversary really isn't until Sept. but we wanted to avoid hurricane season.  Start praying now for safety, etc.  (I hate flying!)

Then July 11th- 18th, Liz and I are going to Grenada with our church youth group on a mission trip.  Please pray for all the funds to come in for this trip.  We have to contribute so much and raise the rest by sending out support letters. It's expensive: $1600 each but I know it's nothing to the Lord.

Then August 3rd thru the 7th, Jenn, my mom, my Aunt Judy and myself are flying to Port Jefferson, Long Island for my cousin, Jeni's wedding on the 6th.  We are totally excited!!! Jenn has been searching on line for things to do in New York.  She's gotten books from the library.  She's even making a cd of music with songs about New York to get us all thinking about the trip!! haha.

So everything I wanted to do this year is coming true!  Well, almost Jenn keeps saying we need to go to Disneyworld in December. Ha.  I think it will have to wait!

Well, those are the plans.  I've been working extra hours trying to save for the different trips.  The Lord has been answering my prayers for the extra hours. PTL.

Thanks for praying! Keep it up.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

What's in a name?

What's in a name?  I think alot.  My daughter just told me she changed her facebook name to Jenn Kelso instead of Jennifer Kelso.  I told her I had noticed.  I asked her why?  Her response was that noone really calls her Jennifer.  Then she added, well, except me, except sometimes Luke, sometimes Whitney, ....
So actually people do use her name.  It's a pretty name.  A name that was given alot of thought.  We had originally named her Jennifer so that we could call her Jenny, but then when we saw her we just couldn't do it.  She was Jennifer.  Our beautiful baby girl, Jennifer Kathleen.  Oh, don't get me wrong, we do call her Jenn.  But just never had her identified like that on facebook or whatever.

Our other daughter is Elizabeth.  It was always Elizabeth. or even Eliz, but never, never Liz or Lizzie.  Well, not anymore.  For some reason she's just Liz.  How odd that we let that happen.  She too has a beautiful name...Elizabeth Kristine.  

But I guess it doesn't change who they are, it doesn't change our love for them.  I guess they are still our beautiful baby girls whether they shorten their names or not.
So what is in a name?  Whether it's Jenn or Liz's still them.  The fun loving christian girls the Lord gave us,  God's special gifts to us.

Monday, March 2, 2009

to travel or not to travel

It's been awhile since I've blogged.  Sorry about that.  But I've been busy.

I went with my parents and my sister to St. Louis, Missouri.  We had a marvelous time.  While dad was at his convention thing, us girls had some girl time.  Sandy got her hair cut and highlighted at a shop in the mall. (brave girl!)  Then all three of us had our face done at Sephora's.  (My new favorite place).  Oh, before that I had my cartlidge pierced, (something I've always wanted to do!, thanks mom).  It was just a fun time.  We went to several scrapbooking stores which was the original goal we had planned on, not all the makeover stuff.  But hey, we're flexible.

Now my travel plans are starting to really mount up.  I may go with my parents and sister to Lexington, Kentucky in April. (Dad has a convention thing there, we drive him there and then shop).

Then in July, I may go with Liz and the youth group on a mission trip to Grenada....I need prayer on this!  It would take a bit of money!!  Not that God isn't able to provide it.  But it'll be over $1000 each for Liz & I to go.  Pray!!

Then in August, my mom wants to go to my cousin Jeni's wedding in New York.  I really want to go!!  So we are checking on flight plans but we'd have to be making arrangements soon so we get a good price.

The one thing I'm really bummed about is Scott & I's 25th anniversary plans have been put on hold.  He doesn't think we'll be able to go because of his work.  (I think that happened on our 20th too).    He's suppose to take me to a beach...out of the country.  He keeps threatening me with the fact that the Illinois river has a beach.  HaHa. YUK!  I think not!

So needless to say I need alot of prayer.  Safety, financially, health...

well, I'll keep you all posted on the travel plans.