Category Archives: Travel

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Just because I am not blogging here does not mean I am not blogging.  I am blogging on circle 90 days until March 30 almost exclusively!



Travel Bracelet

My mom bought me a gift for my trip, I thought it was going to be a practical thing cause that’s the kinda gal my mom is.  She surprised me and bought me a Pandora Bracelet.  She calls it my trip bracelet.   The beads on each end she calls waves, because I am going across the oceans.  The almost look like tires, so either way they are perfect for the thought of traveling.  Then you see the suitcase, self explanatory.  Finally you see the elephant with is representative of Tompaul and I going on the trip together (its one of our favorite animals).

On today’s list I have to work on some Christmas presents, make desert for Thanksgiving, and get ready for Steph’s visit.

’tis the season for reason

What was the rally for sanity and/or fear about?  The idea that the extremes of society do not represent society.  The majority of Americans are not socialists or Tea Partiers.  Just because an American wants to legalize pot does not make them a leftist marxist.  Or because they don’t want universal healthcare they aren’t a tea partier.   As Americans we are more complicated than that.  We want to work together and are tired of being told to be afraid, angry and that the world is ending.

So what was the rally like?  Fun.  Tompaul, Tom and I left Baltimore at 8 am.  Figuring we should be able to get decent views at that point.  We packed lunches, signs and wore sensible layers.  We drove to the Greenbelt Station on the green line.  An there were TONS of people already there.  We made our way up to the already full metro cars and crammed inside.  I thought “Wow! This is super tight.” Little did I know….

Tom , me and five gazillion people leaving the metro station downtown.The theme for the day was “Where’s Waldo?”This was one of my favorite signs.This is my sign…and another Waldo.

Upon arriving to the mall there were people EVERYWHERE.  There were people selling signs, handing out signs, buttons etc.    

We made our way as up front as we could go.  We were in the middle of the green between the national art and air and space museum.

This is our view.  The tent in the middle is for hearing impaired.  This is another view of the stage.This is behind us.This was one of my other favorite signs “The Civil War was an Inside Job.”  Note the people fill the steps of the museum.See people (aka Waldo) even climbed into the trees to see.

Here is a view from the stage (from HP).  We were behind the first screen on the right.  We couldn’t see the stage where we were because that tent in the front was blocked.   As you can see there are people up to the Washington Monument.

This is  Tompaul using his zoom lens to see the stage, you still couldn’t really see anything.

The music was good….

The Roots and John Legend

Ozzy, Yusaf and the Roots.

Tony Bennett

If you blow up the picture you can see Tony Bennett’s orange tie.

How many came?  Well HuffPo estimates about 215,000. There were tons dressed up in costume for Halloween. The rally ended at 3pm but we couldn’t use the mobile phone towers til about 3:30.  The following pics were taken from 3:30 on, when tens of thousands were still in the mall.This was taken over 45 minutes AFTER the rally was over.

This sign is for Steve and Sharon.

All in all it was a good time and I was quite thankful to be able to go.  It was a good time.  It was good to see so many people coming out!

Girls Weekend: St. Louis

It’s been a long time coming!  This weekend was the annual girls weekend, but the first one I have been able to attend.  From Maryland, New York and Florida we converged on St. Louis to stay with Kristin.

We arrived Friday night and so commenced the weekend of hanging out.  It was good to laugh and relax with such good friends.  I for one was grateful to leave my pager behind and catch up.  That may be because the night before I was up till 5am and was running on 2 hours sleep.  Amy and flew in from Baltimore together…which was good because I needed to tnap in the airport and she made sure no one did cruel things…anyway.

Saturday morning Kate made an amazing coffee cake, I helped mix the strudel.  Then off we went to the biggest attraction, the arch.Inside is a nice museum.  Bears were prominent.  Here is Lisabear and Katebear. We thought it would be a great idea to go up in the arch.  Apparently this was designed in the 60s.  You go up in the arch in these “pods.”  Each pod fits 5 people.  So it requires you to go up in definitive groups.  We  were red 8.

While we were waiting there was much to see and do…Mark Twain anyone?Finally it was our turn to pod up!

Then we got to the top!  The thing about the top of the arch is that it sways about 9inches.  So we got up to the top and it made me woozy headead. Its like in my head I felt like I was swaying but my body said I was standing still.

It was good times!

We had dunch at the Brewery.  I got a delicious chitoptle black bean burger and tortillas.  For dessert we went to The Cup, a cupcake eatery.  We bought 6 to share!  My favorite was the pumpkin harvest.

Today we had brunch at Cafe Osage.  I had an AMAZIN huevos rancheros.  We ate outside and had lots of coffee, sunshine and good food!  Then off to Kristin’s church The Journey.

Almost time to run….how sad!  But it was sweet too, and if I didn’t have a good time I wouldn’t be sad.  We will have to do this again soon.


Weekend in Nashvegas (and a side trip to McKay)

Tompaul and I made a quick jaunt to Nashville.  The reason/excuse was we needed to bring more stuff back up with us…but deep down I think we just miss our home.

We spent Friday night in Roanoke, VA to say hi to my parents and crash.  Then early Saturday off we went…reaching Nashville  just in time for church.  If there is one thing I miss most about Nashville its my church.  Long before we moved to Nashville Bronwen attended Gracepoint Adventist Church.  Naturally we began going with her and long after she has moved to the chilly land of Maine we continued.  The big news is we have a new pastor Michael Cauley.  I am  hesitantly pleased.

It was nice to teach youth again.  We focused on Cain and Abel.  Not so much the first murder of the bible, but on redemption, the unpardonable sin and how we can not save ourselves.  Then off to Steve and Sharon’s for their much anticipated opening of their basement that was destroyed in the Flood.  It was a fun cookout with S’mores.  Ahhh its good to be in Nashville.

On the way back from Nashville we made a cursory stop at McKay’s of Knoxville.  I can never stop in to any McKay Bookstore w/o finding something!  This time I found four cookbooks. Tompaul got some books for our trip.  Then of course some good children’s books:

This one always makes me cry.


The Desert of Maine

Tompaul and I  made a quick run to New England this weekend.  Tompaul needed two last interviews for his Leap of Faith documentary.  I needed to get out of the city.   The first interview was in Freeport, ME at Wolf’s Neck State Park. We had been there before and it was amazingly beautiful nature.

Where does one go after the ocean?  The desert of course!  These were just taken with my phone but hopefully it captures something of the radness.

The Desert of Maine has been featured in Ripley’s, Travel Channel, National Geo.  What is it you say?  The coolest place ever!  Apparently the desert is a result of a sand deposit left by a glacier eons ago.  Some farmer bought the farm in the 1700’s and essential practiced poor farming causing the thin layer of topsoil errode.  Finally they couldn’t grow anything and used the land to graze sheep…who completely tore up the topsoil.  The result?  The Desert of Maine.Maine Coon Cat SallyButterfly RoomButterfly Room

This was our tour guide.  He gave one of the best tours I have been on in a while.  Here is the view from the largest dune which is 90 feet high.Good Times