Posted by: Ann | January 17, 2011

Beginning the New Year with a New Blog

During the next week or so I intend to finish posting pictures and blogging about 2010 in this blog, but for 2011 I am beginning a new blog. you can find the new blog here.

Posted by: Ann | December 1, 2010

The Baby “Bumps” Come Together

When Katie and Jeremy arrived for Thanksgiving, it was the first time we had seen Katie since June. When she visited in June she announced her pregnancy to us, but she was only a few weeks along. Even though we had seen pictures of her pregnant belly, it was not the same as seeing her in person. We had fun getting the two “mothers-to” be together.

Posted by: Ann | November 30, 2010

Devil’s Den Campout

When the kids were little, we almost always went camping at Devil’s Den on the last weekend of October, so this year we decided that we should head to Devil’s Den for a campout at the end of October. James, Allison, and Lisa joined us, as well as the Huneycutt family. We had a great time relaxing. We sat by the fire, read, played cards, carved pumpkins, and went for some walks. We didn’t really do any hiking since Allison was 7+ months pregnant. Most of all we just enjoyed being outdoors together in the beautiful fall weather.

Posted by: Ann | November 28, 2010

Fall Camping Trips

I promised another blog post soon, so here it goes. This fall we took two camping trips. The first one, the last weekend of September, was to Petit Jean State Park, and James and Allison went with us. The second was to Devil’s Den on the last weekend of October. Here are a few of the pictures from the trip to Petit Jean.

Posted by: Ann | November 21, 2010

Still Alive…More Posts Coming Soon!

I realize that my blog has remained unchanged since before we left Bulgaria this summer. So much has transpired since then that I’m not sure where to begin. When we arrived home on August 3, I had to “hit the ground running” because I began attending PD sessions on August 9, and I also started my next graduate course that day. There was also much to do as far as unpacking and catching up on things at home. The fall has been mostly a blur, but soon (less than two weeks now) I will finish the third graduate class for the fall and the LAST in my Master’s program. We did manage to take two weekend camping trips, and I really enjoyed the time away with family, even with it being brief. James and Allison arrived back home around the first of September, and exciting days are right around the corner, with two grand babies due soon after the first of the year. Thanksgiving is just a few days away, and I am very excited to have this week off from school. Soon I hope to post pictures from the fall campouts and begin updating the blog again on a regular basis. Of course, at this point I don’t know if anyone even checks my blog anymore, so it may be pointless!

Posted by: Ann | July 28, 2010

What is it??

We were headed up into the mountains from Shipka to find the Freedom Memorial. It is the place in Bulgaria where one of the final battles was fought to free the Bulgarians from the Ottoman Empire. On the way we encountered this strange sight atop a mountain. It looks like a spaceship or flying saucer with a smokestack, but what is it? David and James hiked the steep path up the mountain to find out. After they got up there, they heard people inside and found a way in though a broken window. They came back with exciting tales of an abandonded and vandalized communist memorial or building. The next morning we went back because David and James had seen cars up by the memorial and knew there was a road that could take us there. They wanted Allison and I to see it. We found the way up and were there early in the morning. It was still foggy and drizzly and very eerie since we were the only ones there. This was by far the weirdest thing we came across on our week long travels around Bulgaria. Once we got back to Sofia later that day, we got online to find out about this place. It is called Buzludzha. It was built by the communists and was started in 1974 and finished in 1981. After the fall of communism in Bulgaria in 1989, the memorial/socialist meeting place was vandalized and much of it was destroyed. You can read about it here.

Posted by: Ann | July 28, 2010

Bulgarian Storks

In our travels around Bulgaria, it seemed that nearly every little village and town had at least one stork nesting on a pole or rooftop. Most often these storks created their nests on the top of utility poles, but in Bansko, their was a huge nest on a ledge by the church steeple. I found these storks very interesting, especially since I’ve never seen something like this in the states. I’m guessing that the common presence of storks nesting in a village is how fairy tales of storks delivering babies originated. Kids saw these large birds nesting somewhere in town, and when a baby was born parents just made up a story saying that the stork brought the baby.

Posted by: Ann | July 28, 2010

Arriving in Bulgaria

We arrived in Bulgaria on Saturday, July 17, and James and Allison met us at the airport and took us to their apartment via taxis. We had to have two taxis because of the luggage. We stayed close their their apartment on Saturday, went to church with them on Sunday morning, and made a trip to downtown Sofia on Sunday afternoon. Sunday evening we ate Bulgarian cuisine at their favorite resturant in Sofia, Pod Lipite.

Posted by: Ann | July 12, 2010

Visit from the Seamans

Cousins

Susan and her family (minus Rebecca) arrived on July 5 and spent the week with us. Susan came not only to visit but also for her 30th year high school reunion. We had a fun week, but they left yesterday. Today I have been in “high gear” getting ready to leave on our trip to Europe. First we’ll go to London, and then on Saturday (our 34th anniversary) we will fly to Sofia, Bulgaria to visit James and Allison. We are very excited about spending a few weeks with them!

Posted by: Ann | July 12, 2010

4th of July

Our family gathering this year for the 4th of July was a little smaller than usual. Jacob has been noticing the smaller family groups at several events lately and has commented on it. I think he misses everyone, too. My parents were out of town, and since most of my kids have moved away, there were only nine family members here. Although, Lisa did her part in adding to our numbers by inviting some college girls to join us. We had hamburgers with all the trimmings, including something new – zucchini fries (a new recipe I tried, since I have so much zucchini).

After dinner, the kids (including the college ones) made red, white, and blue tie-dyed t-shirts. Once it was dark we enjoyed some fireworks, both ones John shot off and others our neighbors were doing.

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