Saturday, August 28, 2010

Back from North Carolina

Ralph and I left on a Saturday afternoon to go to NC to visit Ed, Heather, Eddie and Julianna. Traffic was terrible- from the Delaware Memorial Bridge to Richmond should take 4 hours, 5 tops. It took 7.5 hours! No accidents, roads clear and dry, just volume. Traffic would be backed up as far as we could see, then it would move for a mile or so, then jam again. When we finally got of I-95 and onto I-85 around Richmond, all of a sudden if was fine. We drove to South Hill, Virginia, which is about 12 miles before the NC border, and 330 miles from here. We stayed at a hotel, and the above picture is what we woke up to! Fire trucks all over the place. Turns out that an air conditioning unit in one of the rooms caught fire, and they had to evacuate five rooms! I'm so glad we weren't one of them! We got on the road by about 8.30, and drove the last 180 miles. There were scattered showers, one so bad we got off the interstate for about 15 minutes. We got the their house about 12.30.
We were so glad to see them! Julie is holding her build-a-bear that's name is Pinko de Mayo, Pink Bear for short.
My Mom sent them down a bunch of Beanie Babies and other stuffies. They had a good time playing with the birds.
Eddie was the bigger goose, and Julie was the baby. On Monday we went shopping. Ralph and Eddie went to Harbor Freight, and Heather, Julianna and I went to Hancock's Fabric, where Julie got the wings and wand below. Then we had lunch at Cici's Pizza. It was a new place to us, and it's a buffet. All kinds of pasta, pizza, and salads, and brownies and cinnamon cakes. It was cheap- $5.99 for adults, and $2.99 for kids, all you can eat.

Monday afternoon Heather and I went food shopping, and Tuesday morning I put kielbasa and sauerkraut in the crockpot. I only make it a few times a year, because the sodium content is ridiculous, but it tastes so good! We'd brought down Jersey corn, tomatoes and peaches, and we had the corn also.
Wednesday was Eddie's first day of school as a second grader. He was fine and excited, Heather was nervous. He had a terrific day. The county had redistricted, and he was in a new school. He knew his teacher's aide from last year, and there were some girls from his previous class there.
He looked so grown up!
Heather wants to learn to sew, so I took my travel machine down to leave for her. We had Sewing 101, and she did great! We put the straps on the sundresses I'd made for Heather and Julianna. The one Julie is wearing has the little mermaid on it.

One night at 11.30, Ed made us omelets of duck eggs (which taste just like chicken eggs) fresh spinach and Jersey tomatoes. They were wonderful! Wednesday night he cooked on the grill- boneless chicken breasts in foil with fresh spinach, tomatoes, italian dressing, and spices, served with penne pasta. It was so good!

Heather also made soft serve ice cream with the Jersey peaches blended in. Eddie said it was the best ever! We packed up, and after Eddie left for school on Thursday we headed out. We had to drive straight thru because Ralph was working on Friday. It was so hard to leave them, but I didn't cry til we were out the driveway. I miss them so much, but I think they made a good decision in moving.

Coming home, we were doing great til we got near Baltimore. The I-95 tunnel was closed, and the flashing lights said 895 had major delays, so it routed us to 695. Bumper to bumper for several miles, then we got to the Francis Scott Key bridge. It's a long, scary, high, 2 lane bridge. If I was prone to anxiety attacks, I'd have had one! I looked straight ahead, and kept telling myself to breathe! I survived it, and the bridge over the Susquehanna, which is also scary. After those, the Delaware Memorial Bridge was a piece of cake! We lost 1.5 to 2 hours by the detour, and the trip took 11.5 hours! I do all the driving, because Ralph hates to drive, and I hate to be driven. He's a terrific navigator!

So we're home. Monday I have to go into work and have Ralph set up the computer, and set up my office, then I have an appointment with the cardiologist. Wednesday staff reports to work, and Thursday the kids come in for a half day. Steph has her business trip to Chicago- we'll pick up the grand-dogs Tuesday night, and she leaves early Wednesday and will be back on Friday afternoon.

I'm reading a series by Susan Mallery, who's become one of my favorite authors. It's about the Marcelli family, who are wine makers in California. There are four sisters and one brother, and they each have their own book, and guest in the other books. I would classify them as romances with a plot.

I'm still using up the soft baby yarn. I'm on the 3rd baby sized afghan, so I'm way ahead of the game! And I have some big pieces of flannel, so my daughters are all getting flannel pajama pants for Christmas.

And the beat goes on!

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