Monday, September 29

Memphis Zoo/ (Mystery Trip)

It was a tough decision, but I was finally able to pick and choose from my 140+
shots of the panda bears. I don't want to bore you too much, but I just couldn't get it down any lower, besides I am not making you look at these, but am glad you are. :-)

Saturday, September 27

Photo Tag

While reading one of the the blogs I follow, her cousin hit her with PHOTO TAG. It sounds fun so I'm encouraging you to do it. What ya do is open your picture file and go to the fourth folder and then the fourth picture post it and write about the picture. I had no idea what I would find, but I truely love this one.
Sam took this photo in August during our annual VBS week. I am sure he took this one of Joel because we have watched him grow from mommy's belly all the way up till now. Joel enjoyed making these fun to wear glasses in his preschool class one night. He is 4 1/2 in this photo. He is also the little guy I watch and he, along with his older sibblings call us Aunt Lori and Uncle Sam. The girl in the picture is Allie, our Associate Pastors' daughter and she is 13. Scott has his back to us.

Wednesday, September 24

Blackout '08

Here are some facts about the blackout that affected most all of Ohio and into Kentucky:

  • Hurricane Ike blew in for an awful visit with up to 70 MPH winds.
  • Sunday Sept. 14 at 2:00 our power went out.
  • I had to mash our mashed potatoes with a spatula, yes, they were lumpy.
  • Our upstairs shudder busted in half.
  • We were w/o electric for 89 hrs. We have gas water heater, but electric stove.
  • over 1 million outages, the electric company we use had over 700,000 out.
  • 84 out of 87 counties affected.
  • due to no power, there was a gas shortage because it wasn't able to be pumped out of tank.
  • Duke Energy had workers in Texas and had to call them home to help in this mess. They went from 12,000 workers to 16,050 to fix this outage.
  • Electric company workers worked 16 hr. shifts.
  • The wind blew my 79 year old dad over on the road. He was a little scratched up, but fine.
  • The mums Sam and Blake planted on Saturday BLEW out of the ground.
  • Some people were running extension cords across the street to feed off others generators to keep their food frozen.
  • went to bed by 9 p.m. because nothing to do. Could be a baby boom in 9 months.(time will tell)
  • Level 3 on Sunday and Monday morning that means ONLY essential personnel on road.
  • Dad and Sue left for Oklahoma anyway on Monday morning.
  • No ice available for miles. Matthew 25 ministries were giving ice away on Tuesday along with bottled water.
  • The weather was perfect: no rain, temps below 83, and not too cold.
  • One week later the weather is still co-operating w/ no rain and pleasant temps.
  • One week later, Sunday evening they still had 700 w/o power.

Now for some pictures, I didn't go picture hunting, I thought that was rude, due to the fact that some had trees in their roofs and cars smashed. So this is just our property:

Sunday, September 21

Catching You up on us

Hello everyone,
Just thought I better write something, it's been a while.

Last Sunday we lost power in the early afternoon and ours did not come back till Wednesday at 7:10 A.M. due to Hurricane Ike blowing thru. That equals 89 hrs. w/o power. We were some of the fortunate ones; no major damage to our property, we had warm water and extremely friendly neighbors to heat up some left over Manwich from Saturdays dinner on their gas fireplace. For lunch Monday, they grilled up ham steaks and that evening we took some food that was no longer frozen to our daughters to cook up in her oven. She was only out for 12 hrs. More on this blackout later this week.


We left for my mystery trip Friday morning, drove 8 hrs., not to the place *I* thought it was going to be, (but I had the right idea). Drove thru Kentucky, and into Tennessee. I asked him what the hotel name was going to be and Sam just shook his head no, "can't tell ya". We arrived in Memphis, TN.

We are not Elvis fans so I knew that was out, but had no idea, but I keep eluding to the fact he was taking me to see my FAVORITE animal (other than my dog, Lilah). Every now and then I would say to him something along the lines of seeing my favorite animal. No response back.

Saturday we woke up to drizzle. It cleared up by 10 A.M. As we drive to the place, I suddenly see a picture of a panda bear on a sign. "PANDA BEAR!" (I point and shout) "HA,HA SEE, I TOLD YOU WERE TAKING ME TO SEE A PANDA BEAR!!!!" I give him a big smile and a leg squeeze, since I can't hug him while driving. Pictures to follow later. We took over 140 shots of the two pandas. I NEVER want to forget this trip.

Friday, September 12

Blake and 9-11

A short and to the point story: Jennifer, my daughter was getting her 4 year old clothes out for him to get dressed yesterday morning and he wanted to know why he had to wear his flag shirt. Jennifer said because "every September 11th you need to wear your flag shirt". That was good enough for Blake, no more questions. We're thinking everytime he wears it he will be asking "is today September 11th?"

Once camera with me:-(

Thursday, September 11


In the huge mass of evil as it rolls and swells, there is ever some good working toward deliverance and triumph. ~

Let's never forget to thank those that work so hard to keep us safe, the military, the firemen and the police, just to name a few.

Today I bought lunch for a firefighter just because I appreciate all they do for us. He was in line and after placing his order I added mine and paid for it.

Mystery Trip

One day last month (during the Olympics), Sam informed me he wanted to take me someplace. He won't tell me, and the only clue is we are driving 8 hrs. to get there. *I* have an idea where but am not saying (he reads this). Ha! I hardly think it's Niagara Falls again so soon, but that'd be fine with me. :-) He said he needs a 4 day weekend to do it and so finally we have managed to fit it into our schedule. All last month was out because he was on power point rotation for church.

My dad and Sue are planning a trip to Oklahoma to visit my brother and sister-in-law, Bonnie, but they were unsure when, due to a water line break and a big mess to tend to before any trips. They're stopping here first to take Dave's box of china to him. Jennifer brought this box back to Ohio from PA 18 months ago and it is slowly making it's way to Oklahoma.

So I am now counting down the days till we take off next Friday. 8 days to go!

Wednesday, September 10

Something is different

I made a minor change to my blog. Now I want to know who is the first to tell me the change I made.

Monday, September 8


In somebody's front yard we found these soldiers standing proud.

On the dock of Presque Isle, Lake Erie with my dad.
We stopped over 1 night in Erie on our way to Canada. We stayed with dad and Sue and it was nice to visit with Sam’s parents, Eric and Tammy, Donna, George and everyone else I left out. We all went to breakfast in Fairview on Sunday morning. You know where.

When we got back to Erie (Girard) from Ontario we had tons of video and pictures to share off the camera, we hooked all our gadgets up to Sue’s TV. And dad and Sue really enjoyed it. It was great to have dinner with Sam’s family at a restaurant. Although I hardly consider the Vets Club a restaurant.

During our 3 day stay we kept busy. Dad, Sam and I; we were on the go A LOT. Sue was not retired yet so she went to work and we went off to play. I am an advid reader of the Erie paper and made a list of things that were going on around town over the past months; we went to see and do all of them, this way I was able to “see for myself”. You might ask what we did and saw so wait no longer:

Some big buck idiot put these 2 chainsaw rings into this tree and the one next to it to kill it. He did this cause he wants the trees to die so his rental property that looks dumpy will have a great view of Lake Erie. The trees are valued at $15,000. This does not include the damage to the bank stability. He owns some funeral homes and is 83 yrs. old. Nothing has been done for restitution or fines yet. And who knows what will be done.
A very small sampling of some fine china a relative was showing us.

This wooden coaster was just built and opened for operation at an
amusement park we grew up going to. No parking or admittance fee. You pay for a ride a Rama or by the ride. We paid $4.50/pp to ride this 1 minute, 30 second ride. It is awesome. $3.50/ticket went to some non-profit organization. To read more about this and enjoy a narrated ride click here:Ravine Flyer 2

These kangaroos were at the Erie Zoo. We literally were walking in their territory. Very neat. We HAD to shoot some video of these rambunxious fellaws.
We counted 15 of them and they were moving around, so who really knows.

Thursday, September 4


This is the Canadian side
also calleld the Horseshoe falls.
View from our hotel window.

I’ve been itching to visit the falls, it’s been years and years since I was up there. Sam said we could go, and then gave me the joy (sarcasm) of finding us a hotel. I asked what the limit was on room rate. He was more worried about finding a good hotel with an awesome view than cost. I was so excited to hear that.

We stayed at the Embassy Suites Falls view hotel in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. We were on the 31st floor out of 41, and we had the most magnificent view and room ever imaginable.

We got there on a Sunday. Once the bell guy got us in our room, we just pulled the comfy chairs up to our way extra large window and watched and awed from the room with the view. (They mostly all had exceptional views). Eventually, we were able to pull ourselves away from the window to get unpacked and organized. Time to venture out. We then made our way down to the falls. It wasn’t exactly easy to get there, we walked because it was way too close to drive, but just the path we had to take was sorda a zigzag route. We had to go up to go around the corner to go down to the observation area. We even got kissed by the mist as we approached it. :-)

Sunday was fireworks night. We watched them right from the comfort of our room! After the fireworks was the light show. They have lights on both the American (Bridal Veil Falls) and the Canadian falls (a.k.a. Horseshoe Falls). The lights would change color and then various other colors would chime in and it was just great! Every night we enjoyed sitting in our comfy chairs watching the water, people and of course the lights. The light show is every night but if you’re planning to see the fireworks you best do a bit of research before you go. They are not every night.

The next day we went to Clifton Hill, toured Ripley’s Believe it or Not, a wax museum of famous actors/ actresses, entertainers and famous people. We even rode on a ferris wheel that was 175’ high!

We stayed 2 more nights and on our second full day we took a tour with a group of about 40. We were whisked to the front of the line for the Maid of the Mist, behind the falls tour, The Niagara Fury movie, The Skylon tower, and The Butterfly Conservatory. That’s just some of our highlighted stops. Every stop that included a line, we were at the front. I highly recommend going to Niagara Falls at least once in your life and go while you can still get around; there is a lot of walking.

This was a great way to celebrate our 20th anniversary; after all, we honeymooned there.

Here are some pictures we took:

I was so excited to see a black squirle because I saw one in my own back yard and when I came back with the camera it was gone. Black ones are not at all common where we live. Even the park ranger said he never saw one here.

I'm not sure what he is finding so funny. Is he trying to get rid of me after 20 yrs.?

They change the flowers on this working clock at the start of each season.

A magnificent view from our window of the American Falls.