Month: June 2007

Happy, Happy Birthday, Baby

Today, Bryton turned a year old.

He is the son of Linda’s cousin, whom we’ve become foster aunt and uncle to. He was born six weeks premature and was his mom’s first successful pregnancy in five. He is our miracle.

A Backyardigans-themed party was held at Mill Race Park in Columbus, Indiana, and despite his youth, he seemed to have a real fun time. He received a lot of gifts and was shown tons of love.

Happy Birthday, Bryton, with all our love! Here’s to many, many more!

Ahh … My Couch

Home sweet home.

It was another fulfilling day that all of us enjoyed, but it sure feels good to be back home, relaxing on my couch and watching television.

Today we took in the the U.S. Air Force Museum located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio. It was an amazing sight to see – three, huge hangers filled with military aircraft dating back to the origin of flight all the way through the Stealth Fighter and Bomber. There is even a section dedicated to spaceflight.

While I have never had any obsessions with either flying or military, I have always been fascinated with aircraft and today’s trip was very satisfying.

We left Dayton after spending about four hours at the museum and were home by 8 p.m. I have lots of photos to go download and go through, which I’ll add at a later time. For now, unfortunately, it’s back to the newspaper grind and a state of being pretty much miserable for everyone.

Fun times.

A Whole Lotta Drivin’ Goin’ On

I’m tired. Really tired. So tired that last night’s blog entry was made in between catnaps at the laptop. I’ve rejuvenated somewhat, but we spent more than six hours in the car today as we departed New York and wound up in Dayton, Ohio. Since leaving the house on Wednesday evening we’ve traveled a little more than 1,000 miles. Ugh!

We are here because we couldn’t, at first, find anything else to do today. We knew we had to head toward home, but our options from there didn’t provide much excitement. Finally, Linda suggested we head toward Dayton where tomorrow we can visit the museum at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

All in all, this has been a successful vacation. Both boys have used the word “magnificent” to describe it, so I’m pretty sure we’ve done something right.

Some random thoughts and observations:

  • Pennsylvania smells nice. At least, the part where we drove did. Occasionally, and for no determinable reason, we would pass through an area lasting about a mile that smelled incredibly floral … Mild and soothing.
  • Parts of Cleveland stink. While walking several blocks toward Quicken Arena in downtown Cleveland, there were two or three points where the sewage aroma was overwhelming.
  • Cleveland has successfully overcome its “mistake on the lake” syndrome. It’s a nice city, full of very helpful and friendly people.
  • Gas prices in Indiana are criminal. When we left, regular unleaded was going for around $3.50 a gallon. We filled up in Columbus, Ohio, on the way north and it was around $3.10/gal. and some places in Cleveland had it for under $3.05. Depending on where one was in Buffalo, a gallon of gas was $3.079 to $3.229, and several stations along I-90 in Pennsylvania today had it for $2.999. We filled up here in Dayton at $3.049 and then found it a couple of miles away for $3.019. Hoosiers are getting ripped off, plain and simple.
  • Canadians have cool currency. The $5, $10 and $20 bills are neat looking and it was kinda strange getting Canadian money from of an ATM (called ABMs there). The $2 coin is awesome, too.
  • Zach likes sushi. He’d never eaten it before, but was curious. He talked us into letting him get some at a multi-cultural cafeteria in Canada and really enjoyed it. More power to him.
  • Wireless Internet is the berries! Yes, I’m spoiled. Being able to carry a laptop throughout a hotel and stay “connected” is awesome!
  • My family is awesome! I can’t imagine doing anything important without having them along to share my excitement with. I couldn’t be more proud of any of them!

Sadly, this is the last entry before we get home. Hopefully, we won’t confront any surprises when we pull in the driveway or walk in the door tomorrow. Then it’s back to the daily grind on Monday. But not before blogging about tomorrow’s visit to the Wright-Patterson museum.

Oh, Canada

Yet another jam-packed day of vacation is now behind us and we are all about spent.

Our morning began casually as we took full advantage of the hotel’s free continental breakfast then headed out to Niagara Falls.

The temperature outside was a little cooler than it had been the past couple of days as there was quite a bit of cloud cover. Thunderstorms threatened, but we experienced only light sprinkles occasionally. By late afternoon/early evening, the sun shone and blue sky appeared.

We began our Day 3 adventure on Goat Island, on the United States side of the Falls, where we walked out to Luna Island and stood between American Falls and the much smaller Bridal Veil Falls.

At the U.S. overlook for Horseshoe Falls, we realized just how much bigger it was than American Falls. Utterly amazing.

Once we tired of there, we headed to Canada, giving us a much better view of both falls and our third country in the past 53 weeks.

Oddly, after all the hoops we had to go through to get proper identification for the boys in order to cross the border, all they needed was their state-issued photo ID. At least we have everything now, though.

The view from the Canadian side was nothing short of magnificent. Anyone who goes to the falls and doesn’t take in that view is truly missing out on something. Seeing them from Canada puts them in a whole new perspective.

Tomorrow is a mystery as we have no clue where we’re headed. We purposefully did not reserve a hotel room anywhere in order that we might just wing it. Maybe we’ll end up in Pittsburgh, perhaps in Columbus (Ohio) or Cincinnati. Or we may just end up going straight home.

I guess we’ll just play it by ear from here on out.