Saturday, July 31, 2010

Rain on Saturday

We've had a bit of rain this morning here on the hill. Uncle Fuzzy took Jake trout fishing on the Clinch River this morning, and they pulled in three nice ones before the rain ran them off of the river. The fish are in the oven, and Jake and Sarah are piled up on the sofa watching Nanny McPhee, while Sherry and Joey have gone out to the Blount County Public Library to find some more movies for us to watch. Sarah has darkened the house to make the living room a movie theater.

Up the Creek

Sherry and I loaded the children into the car yesterday afternoon and took a picnic up to Abrams Creek, which was muddy from rain when we got there, though it cleared considerably during the time we were up there. We took some inflatable tubes (or toruses, if you prefer) with us, and we took turns floating down the creek. With temperatures in the nineties here in the valley all week, it was nice to cool down in a mountain creek.

When we got home and to the conveniences of modern life, we ordered a pizza from Jet's Pizza. We usually order pizza from Papa John's, but we were very pleased with Jet's. There's nothing like hot pizza when you're hungry and tired after a day in the mountains!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Representative Government Begins in America

On July 30, 1619, the Virginia House of Burgesses met for the first time. Thus began representative government in America. The picture depicts Patrick Henry addressing the House of Burgesses more than a century later.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Word of the Day -- Torus

I just learned from Neatorama that a doughnut-shaped object is a torus, which is mathematically explained here.

Titanic Adventure

Sherry picked up Jake and Joey after work yesterday so they can spend a long weekend with us. She took off work today so that she could take them up to Pigeon Forge to tour the new Titanic museum up there. We visited a similar exhibit in Nashville several years ago at the Opryland Hotel, and I remember it featured a huge hunk of ice to give you a feel for what an iceberg is like. With temperatures in the nineties outside, that sounds awfully nice.

UPDATE: The Titanic museum assigns each person on the tour with the identity of a crew member or passenger on the Titanic, and at the end they let you know whether your particular person survived the sinking of the vessel. I'm pleased to report that my family is unsinkable, but my city girl wife got lost on the way home from Pigeon Forge. Of course, her country boy husband pretty much stayed lost for five years trying to navigate the highways of Nashville, so who am I to talk?

Lime and Chili Tenderloin

We like pork tenderloin at our house. Our default cooking method is to make a sauce out of peach or apricot preserves and Dijon mustard and to cook it in a crock pot, but I like this recipe from The Noble Pig. It seems perfect for summer.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tomatoes and Summer

The Grainger County Tomato Festival was last weekend, and though we didn't attend, we have been enjoying this summer's tomatoes, some of which Grainger County furnished to our local grocery stores. Unfortunately, the two tomato plants we have been growing in containers on our back deck suffered during the week we were at the beach. We brought all of the plants in containers into the house so they would not cook in the sun. It kept most of the plants alive, but I fear being inside for a week really stunted our tomato plants and our squash plant. I think we'll ultimately be able to harvest a few tomatoes, but the squash plant is about spent without producing anything we could eat.

Bacon Quest

Geek Dad is on a bacon quest, which he calls The Great Bacon Odyssey. Pictured above is bacon-encrusted fried chicken. He's also tried a hamburger wrapped in ten slices of bacon, and after that, a burger made entirely of bacon. I feel my arteries clogging just thinking about it.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Scotty Fought at Normandy

I've been a Star Trek geek for years, but I never knew that James Doohan, who played Scotty, fought at Normandy. A Canadian, he was the first man off his boat at Juno Beach and was hit several times by a German machine gunner.

Paul McCartney Rocks Nashville

My cousin Fran went to the Paul McCartney show in Nashville last night. According to the Tennessean, he put on a good show. We're organizing a family gathering at our cabin in Estill Springs for the end of August, and hopefully I will get to hear her tales from the show then.

If he stuck to the set list, they did not play "Rocky Racoon."

Boom Removed from Destin's East Pass

The Destin Log reports that the boom has been removed from Destin's East Pass now that the oil well has been capped. The boom will be returned to the pass if oil comes within five days of Destin Harbor.

Meteor of 1860

One-hundred and fifty years ago last week, some meteors lit up the sky above New York. Painter Frederick Church put brush to canvas to capture the event. Walt Whitman wrote about the meteors as well.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Seen in Brentwood, Tennessee

My wife shot this photograph recently when we went out to dinner in Brentwood, Tennessee. I am an attorney, and I'm all for giving adequate, reasonable notice of dangerous conditions. This is just silly, though. How does stating a tautology help a citizen avoid danger?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Will McCartney Play Rocky Raccoon in Nashville Next Week?

Paul McCartney will play Nashville at the Center formerly known as Sommet and Gaylord (now known as Bridgestone Arena) tomorrow night. Will he play "Rocky Raccoon" after the capture of the Tennessee racoon of that name at the State Capitol?

Fort Craig Flowers

Sherry took this lovely photograph at Fort Craig Elementary School on Sarah's first day of first grade.

Protestin' in Destin

Yesterday protesters turned up on Highway 98 in Destin to call attention to the oil spill and the problems it continues to create for residents on the Gulf of Mexico. One guy had a sign that said, "Got tar balls?"

What a sad sign of the times on the panhandle of Florida, and elsewhere along the Gulf.


Sherry opened up her scrapbooking box in search of some stamp pads for an art project of Sarah's, and the girls ended up spending the afternoon scrapbooking. From the look of their work area, it appears as though she's brought Sarah's scrapbook up through age five.

I was much less productive. Although we through together a batch of Santa Fe Soup, I didn't do much yesterday except relax. I did take Sarah outside for a little while to get her out of Sherry's hair and to play in the hose water, but other than that our day was pretty quiet.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Racoon Trapped at Tennessee General Assembly

A raccoon, nicknamed Rocky from the Beatles song, has been prowling the halls of the Tennessee General Assembly for the past couple of weeks. He has been doing what raccoons do, looking for food, and until Thursday he has eluded capture. On Thursday he was trapped, and the bait that let to his capture was barbecued chicken. He will be relocated to a Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency wilderness management area.

I really enjoyed this story. Being a Tennessean, I like raccoons. They are cool, resourceful little animals, and I'm sure the existence of a raccoon within the halls of the Tennessee legislature made life interesting in downtown Nashville. I hope Rocky finds happiness, if no barbecue, in his new home.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Instictive Drowning Response

Television and movies portray drowning as a noisy affair, with the distressed swimmer flailing around and calling for help. In reality, drowning doesn't happen that way, and something called the Instictive Drowning Response kicks in to keep you afloat for around twenty to sixty seconds before you go to Davy Jones' Locker. Keep an eye on the kids!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

First Grader

Our Sarah is winding down her first week of first grade. She's had a good summer break and made some new friends, but I think she was ready to return to her regular routine. One nice change is that her lunch now begins at 11:55 a.m. instead of 10:40 a.m. This will make it easier to join her for lunch, which I did yesterday.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Only in North Carolina

I read a piece in The Mountain Press, a newspaper in neighboring Sevier County, Tennessee, about the latest craziness our neighbors in the State of North Carolina are engaging in. They have created Krispy Kreme doughnuts with a Cheerwine cream filling. For the uninitiated, Cheerwine is a cherry-flavored soft drink bottled in Salisbury, North Carolina, the city of my birth. The beverage is one of my favorites, and I don't know anyone who doesn't like Krispy Kreme doughnuts. I'm a little leery about the combination, and I'm absolutely fearful of the KFC Double Down Krispy Kreme Cheerwine Doughnut Sandwich, pictured above.
UPDATE: Try one with bacon!

Bessie and the Blue Jay

When I lived out on Louisville Lake I had a tuxedo cat named Bessie, and she spent a lot of time outside. One day when I came home from work I found Bessie in the front yard, and a blue jay was diving down at her from a tree. As I went in the house I thought that the bird shouldn't be messing with Bessie, who was a champion hunter.

I changed into casual clothes from my business suit and puttered around the house for a while before going back outside for some reason. When I did it looked like the blue jay had exploded because there were blue feathers all over the yard. Bessie, of course, left some choice giblets on the porch for me.

Cat 1, Blue Jays 0

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

One Giant Leap for Mankind

On July 20, 2969, Neil Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the moon. Standing on the moon's surface, he famously said, "That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind." Now humans live in space on the International Space Station.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Glasswing Butterfly

This is an aptly named Glasswing butterfly, which is found from Mexico down to Central America (and on Things I Think Are Kinda Cool).

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Back at Home

We spent the weekend in Nashville this weekend visiting with Jake and Joey and Grams. It is the first time I've visited Nashville since the flood in May, and it was sad to see all the damage to the homes in our old neighborhood. There are many homes for sale, many being remodeled and many just vacant. Bellevue is full of yards with dumpsters in the process of being loaded with debris.

On a brighter note, we spent Saturday afternoon at the Rolling River subdivision pool. The day began with clouds, so not many people were at the pool, but the sun came out and gave us a nice day to enjoy playing in the water with the kids. Afterward, we met Sherry's friend, Robert, for supper at Pei Wei, a restaurant featuring Asian food, and finished the day off with Baskin Robbins ice cream and another dip in the pool at the hotel where we stayed over the weekend.

We hit the Kroger on Northshore Drive in Knoxville on the way back home to Maryville, and after unloading the car we're settling in the enjoy what is left of Sunday afternoon. We will cook up some chicken and fresh corn at some point this afternoon, and we expect to see Mom and perhaps a sister or two before the day is gone. It is good to be home!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Shiver Me Timbers!

This is an awesome story. Workers excavating at the site of where the World Trade Center is to be rebuilt (Take that, terrorist scum!) have found a sailing ship from the mid-1700's buried in the mud. Archeologists have descended upon it. It is very cool that a ship from the time this country was being founded would be found in such a place. It's almost like the founding generation left us a little something to encourage us as we rebuild.

Apollo 11

A Saturn V rocket blasted off from Kennedy Space Center on July 16, 1969, carrying Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin, Jr., to Earth's moon. I was about to turn six, and I remember how important my parents thought it was that their children watch the liftoff. In fact, like most American families, we pretty much stayed glued to our television sets until the three men were back on Earth.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Plugged and Picayune

BP announced that they have stopped the flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, but there's more to it than that, according to the New Orleans Times Picayune.

Also, I wondered what a picayune was and learned it was a Spanish coin of little value (about six and a half cents). I suspect when the Big Easy newspaper took that name it was advertising that the publication was inexpensive.

More on Rosti

I visited Interlaken, Switzerland, with my mom and my sisters in the summer of 2000. Interlaken is in the Bernese Alps, a beautiful, mountainous region. The Swiss are known for their cheese, and fondue and bread are served as the first course of almost every meal. Most every meal also includes rosti, a potato dish. I think of rosti as being like hash browns, and since Switzerland produces a lot of really wonderful cheese, especially up on the alps, rosti usually includes a healthy bit of cheese, along with a variety of other ingredients. It is good, hearty, starchy food, worthy of mountain people.


The bloggers at Nosh and Tell have been traveling this summer. One of them went to Israel, and is back home making a fancy Mac and Cheese. The other has discovered rosti in Switzerland.

Yet Another New Word -- Phonagnosia

I just read about phonagnosia on Neatorama. Some people lack the ability to differentiate between people's voices, and the condition is phonagnosia. I am one of the few people who can tell my sisters, identical twins, apart on the telephone. Even Mom has a hard time with that. I can't imagine not being able to process such information.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Happy Birthdays!

My cousin Jim in Murfreesboro, a regular reader, celebrated a birthday yesterday, and my Aunt Joan in Silver Springs, Maryland, an intrepid explorer, celebrates her birthday today. Happy Birthday to both!

Coming Home

Another dormant blogger revives. Kiss my Spatula tells of a homecoming.

Pizza Review: Helen Back Cafe, Navarre, Florida

Another comfort we enjoyed after our sailing trip last week was pizza from Helen Back Cafe. I think the Navarre location is the one Randy picked up the pies from, although there is also a store in Fort Walton Beach, which is also nearby. Randy said that he had to drive to Helen Back to get us pizza. At any rate, the pizza came highly recommended by both Randy and Dawn, and it did not disappoint.

I can't blog about pizza down on the panhandle of Florida without plugging our favorite, Bruno's Pizza on County Road 30-A in Seagrove Beach. I look forward to it every year.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

File Room Clerk

I spent my morning in the file room moving files from shelf to shelf to make room for more, inasmuch as litigation never sleeps. I reckon I've moved between 5,000 and 6,000 files today. Sherry warned me this morning that I might not be able to move tomorrow, but I have around 10,000 more files to move, so I hope my poor, old muscles don't stiffen up too much overnight. To tell the truth, I feel good for having had the exercise, though I'm beat. I shall sleep well tonight.

As an attorney, I have worn a business suit to work almost every day since July 1, 1993, when I first came to practice law in Maryville. Most of the good people I know as a professional person have never seen me in casual clothes, so I usually get a bit of ribbing when I am out of my accustomed uniform. Because I knew I'd be doing manual labor today, I wore jeans and a T-shirt to the justice center, and as I anticipated my attire raised a few eyebrows. My lawyer friend Stan Barnett was so astounded he documented the event with a photograph

Where do Paisleys Come From?

Sherry picked out a paisley dress for Sarah to wear this morning. I told the child the pattern was called paisley and showed her the shape of a paisley on the fabric of the dress, and she asked, "Where do paisleys come from?" What did parents do before Wikipedia?

According to Wikipedia paisleys are Persian and Indian in origin. The patterns were imported by the East India Company in the early 1600's, and soon were being produced in England and Scotland. Paisley is the name of a town in Scotland that produced a lot of fabric with paisley patterns.

Cool Pool Toy

When we got back from our sailing trip with Captain Randy and Dawn at the end of our vacation on the Gulf of Mexico, we went back to their condo and took the kids down to their pool overlooking Choctawhatchee Bay to cool down. We found this cool inflatable jet ski toy, which has a propeller and squirt gun powered by eight D batteries. Why didn't they have toys like this when I was a kid?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Nashville's Grey-Eyed Man of Destiny

I found out on Nashville's Post Politics this morning that Nashville's William Walker was sworn in as President of Nicaragua on July 12, 1856. Back in the day, filibuster had a different meaning than it does today, and filibusters like Walker organized troops and took over places hoping success at arms would bring American sanction to their efforts later. I first became aware of Walker from a historical marker in downtown Nashville I read on the way to a deposition one morning, but I learned more about him from the Tennessee Encyclopedia.

I want a cool sobriquet like Walker's "Grey-Eyed Man of Destiny," but I'm afraid mine would be something more like "Near-Sighted Man of Bunions." I guess I'll pass on the sobriquet.

Liberty Bell

The Mental Floss website has some interesting facts about the Liberty Bell. I did not know that each state has a replica of the bell. Tennessee's is on the lawn of the State Capitol in Nashville.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Jimmy Buffett & Friends Live From the Gulf Coast

Buffett's benefit show for the Gulf of Mexico airs on CMT tonight at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time. Buffettworld has details.

Bread, Emma and Beetlejuice

I have been working on some bread. I just got through mixing the dough, and it is rising in a bowl downstairs in the kitchen. Sherry is cozy on the sofa with Emma the cat sleeping on her. Sarah did some homework earlier this morning in anticipation of her first day of first grade later this week, but now she is watching Beetlejuice, which she discovered while we were on vacation. We are enjoying a quiet Sunday afternoon.

Yankee Word of the Day -- Cabinet

In Rhode Island and part of southeastern Massachusetts they make milk shakes with ice cream and flavored syrup, and up there they call them cabinets. I learned about them from The Ungourmet, where you can find the recipe for the examples pictured above. Although I had never heard of a cabinet before, they should be delicious from the recipe.
I take consolation in the thought that it is unlikely many Rhode Islanders know what a hushpuppy is.

Some More Pictures from the Beach

The sun sets over Seagrove Beach.

We had a couple of days of rough weather caused by Hurricane Alex.

Walking on the beach.

The moon rises over Seagrove Beach.

Jake and Joey wait for lunch at the Margaritaville restaurant in Panama City.


Aerial Combat

On my morning walk I saw several mockingbirds running a big, ol' crow out of their neighborhood. No doubt the crow had seen a mockingbird nest and was thinking of having eggs for breakfast. The mockingbird fleet was having none of that, and I last saw the crow as he was flapping away over Fox Den Pizza on Sevierville Road with a mockingbird still nipping at his tail.

Also in bird news, Sherry and Sarah and I bought some flowers, red Salvia, to replace the petunias in our flower boxes, the petunias having withered in the sun while we were vacationing. We bought our flowers at the Home Depot over in the Foothills Mall area, and we heard screeching in the patio area of the store. Sherry inquired about it, and the cashier told us it was a recording of a red hawk meant to scare pigeons away. She said the pigeons that have been around the block a few times know the hawk sounds are fake, but it works on the rookie pigeons.

UPDATE: I found a post on Flickr where a mockingbird killed a crow.

Oil Slick Viewed from Space

This image showing the oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico was taken in early May by one of the astronauts serving on the International Space Station.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Word of the Day -- Clerihew

I just caught my wife upstairs experimenting with arcane English literature. We learned that a clerihew is defined as a "humorous, pseudo-biographical verse of four lines of uneven length, with the rhyming scheme AABB, and the first line containing the name of the subject." For example,

Sir Humphrey Davy
Abominated gravy.
He lived in the odium
Of having discovered sodium

We're going to get really kinky later and read some double dactyls.

Ed Emberley Drawing Books

A friend of Sarah's from school shared a kids' drawing book with her, and a couple of weeks ago we asked the librarian at the Blount County Public Library to show us some children's drawing books. The librarian suggested we check out an Ed Emberley book, and Sarah has really enjoyed it. His books give step by step instructions about how to draw simple pictures using shapes and lines, and Sarah really likes using the books to draw pictures. The first book we checked out reminded me of a similar book I checked out of the library as a child. The book we checked out of the library this morning is one of the books I checked out of the library as a child. I think that is pretty cool.

Blogging vs. Facebook

My friend Rob Huddleston's blog has been dormant for a couple of months, and I'm glad to see he's posting again. He attributes his blog's inactivity in part to his being a busy attorney, husband and father, and in part to Facebook. I started a Facebook account several months ago and discovered that I was blogging less, so I decided to stick with the blog because I had more time invested in it. Sherry loves Facebook, and I'd guess she spends about the same amount of time on Facebook that I do on blogging.

Development in Nashville After the Flood

I just read an interesting article in the Nashville Scene about May's flood and the Metro government's decision-making with regard to development both before and after the flood. The story begins and ends with the story of a family who lived in our former neighborhood of Bellevue, where the Harpeth River overflowed its banks at filled their house with eight feet of muddy water. I still have yet to see the damage to our erstwhile neighborhood, but it sounds like some of the area is practically abandoned.

One of the points in the story that caught my eye was that the sites of old homes, like Bellevue Plantation, did not flood. Whoever builds in an area with a river nearby first inevitably builds on the highest ground around, both to be high above it if it floods and for the view. The people who build later have to take what is left, and the later you build the lower you build. Knowing the geography of Bellevue fairly well, for I have walked much of it, I've seen a lot of places subject to flooding. I saw the Harpeth come close to flooding the River Plantation condos a couple of times during the five years I lived in Bellevue. Other places that flooded, for instance the neighborhood where Jake and Joey live with their dad, did not occur to me as areas that could flood.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Skippy the Rat Goes to the Beach

Skippy the Rat has been my vacation companion for many years. I bought him for two dollars years ago, and I have certainly had a lot of fun with the toy for the two dollars I spent. He always gets a lot of attention on the beach.
My favorite gag is to put Skippy onto the conveyor belt among a bunch of groceries at the grocery store. When the cashier notices him, you pick him up by the tail and exclaim in mock outrage, "There are rats in this grocery store!" I haven't pulled that one in a while, so local grocers beware.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Dragon to Open

The Daily Times reports that The Dragon, U.S. Highway 129, will reopen this weekend, after being closed for months because of a rock slide.

The Milky Way

This is a pretty view of the Milky Way, as seen from Australia.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Charles Dickinson's Duel with Andrew Jackson

Although Andrew Jackson fought many duels, including one with John Sevier after Sevier unwisely insulted Jackson's wife, but he only killed one man in a duel. That man was a Nashvillian named Charles Dickinson, who Jackson shot to death on May 30, 1806.

Archaeologists have been working for years at 216 Carden Avenue in Nashville looking for Dickinson's remains, and last summer they found him. His remains were reburied in the Nashville City Cemetery on June 25, 2010.

Granddaddy Ogle's Birthday

My sister Leslie wrote a poem in honor of our paternal grandfather, William Ellis Ogle, after his death in 2000. He was born on July 7, 1904, and she sent me and our sister Laura the poem today in remembrance of his birthday. Granddaddy went by his middle name, partly because Grandmother's first name was Willie, though she went by "Bill." Leslie's poem was inspired by Jimmy Buffett's song, "The Captain and the Kid," about his own grandfather. I've copied her entire e-mail below.

In honor of the most honorable man who ever lived…William Ellis Ogle was the epitome of a Southern Gentlemen. He was kind, honest and admirable…and he loved his grandbabies…and they loved him right back. For the “man of my dreams,” this is for you—

I never missed the chance, to climb upon your knee,
And listen to tall fishing tales that you loved to share with me.

In the winter we played Scrabble; in the summer it was fun,
Picking blackberries and wheel barrow rides in the warm August sun.

What treasured memories of a man so fine,
We loved to throw Frisbee and sit under the Hemlock Pine.

That ol’ Ford Fairlane—the color of sky blue,In the trunk you’d find cane fishing poles, and something special for you. I’m not sure where you go when you leave this earth,

But I know my granddaddy must have known since birth,
That no matter what your plight in life, you’re bound to succeed,
If you have the right attitude and a fine example you lead.

A fine example you were, granddaddy, and one thing is for certain,
I’ll structure my life after yours, before I reach my final curtain.

The memories are bitter-sweet, but I do love to share,
Although my heart is breaking, I’m proud to have loved a man so rare.

You’re somewhere on the fishing bank now,The place you ought to be, One hand’s on that ol’ cane rod,The other’s waving back at me.

We love you,
Signed,Your grandchildren,
Stephen, Leslie and Laura

Bellevue Shoney's Reopening Tomorrow

The Shoney's in our former Nashville neighborhood of Bellevue has been closed since the building was damaged by the May flooding. The restaurant is reopening tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. central time, and they're giving away free hot fudge cake! They are also donated part of the day's profit to the Bellevue Exchange Club to help flood victims.

Book Review -- Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times by H.W. Brands

I read Andrew Jackson: His Life and Times by H.W. Brands during our vacation. I studied Jackson in some depth in college, and I still enjoy reading about Tennessee's first President and his contemporaries. The book consists largely of statements made by Jackson himself and those who supported and opposed him, and Brands put all of it into a narrative that was entertaining to read. It was a good choice for a week's worth of reading, at least at the pace of a couple of hours each morning I had set aside for reading.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

BP and the Beach

Here are a few photographs of scenes we saw on the Gulf of Mexico that we've never seen before. Above, a couple of workers scan the beach for oil washing up on shore. We saw a lot of blue rubber gloves and yellow rubber boots last week. Below, a boom is in place to protect Chocatawhatchee Bay from oil.
Booms are staged at the entrance to the East Pass so that the pass can quickly be closed in order to close off the bay should oil approach the area on top of the water. What little we saw washing up on the beach was underwater, and it wasn't hard to avoid.

Above, workers perform maintenance on the booms.

This photograph shows the Destin fishing fleet sadly idle at peak season. Although many fisheries have been closed due to the oil spill, there are still fisheries open nearby. The problem is that people don't know that and aren't chartering fishing trips. The docks in this photograph should be empty on Independence Day weekend. The captains of these boats and their families are hurting.

We saw this BP Claims Center on Highway 98 between Seagrove Beach and Destin.

Back to Work and Camp

Sherry and I go back to work today after our vacation last week, and Sarah returns to her summer camp program, which features a water sports day today. It is hard to believe that Sarah has less than two weeks until she starts first grade. Her kindergarten teacher sent home some homework for the summer, and we worked on it yesterday. I have three days of court beginning today, and that will help my work week pass quickly.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Last Day of Vacation

Our friends Randy and Dawn took us sailing Saturday aboard their sailboat La Vie Dansante. We sailed from the dock near their condo to Crab Island, which is just inside the East Pass in Destin. The East Pass is where you enter Choctawhatchee Bay from the Gulf of Mexico. We anchored on Crab Island, which is actually underwater, where the water was about six feet deep. We cooked out, and the kids jumped off the boat and swam in the bay. It was a fun day!
Gilligan takes the helm.

I'm not sure how wise it was to let me drive, but I enjoyed it.

Jake defies gravity, but only for a moment.

Sarah really struggled with her life jacket.

A day of sailing wore the kids, and us, out.

As the Jimmy Buffett song says, "I'm sorry it's ended. Oh, it's sad, but it's true. It's been a lovely cruise."

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Choctawhatchee Bay, Destin, Florida, U.S.A.

God bless America!
Here are a few snapshots of our sailing trip from Mary Esther to Crab Island yesterday with Randy and Dawn.
Nautical Children

Air Jake at the East Pass