September 6-25

Time to catch up the blog so here's a brief recap of what's been going on with we nomads...
Ryan has called twice - 1st from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and this weekend from Bahrain. He sounds good and what a treat and blessing to hear his voice from so far away.

The USS Stennis at sunset

 Along with catching up with family, friends and neighbors, we've had some fun times with Liam and Connor.
Sweet grandsons

 Our parents are doing well and my Dad continues to amaze us!

Mark and I just returned from separate vacations (mine was a vacation....his was a working getaway to Florida where he spent a week helping Philip and Annette settle into their new home.) Father and son tackled the job list with a vengeance and it was a successful week! Mark thoroughly enjoyed it all and got to share in Philip's 35th birthday which was the 21st.
The Birthday Boy cruising on the Hudson River on 8-19-11

I spent 4 very fun days with my sisters-in-law, Linda and Vicki in Boston. We flew out on Sunday, the 18th and stayed at the Sheraton in Copley Place. My nephew, Jason (Linda's son) was there on business for the week and he showed us around.....driving us to Rockport on Sunday – very quaint coastal town north of Boston with good shops, eateries, etc.

Charming Rockport

Boston memories...
Waiting to dig into our hot lava cake at the Chart House
Delicious desserts at Mike's Pastry
Vicki, Michael, Linda and Jason
Linda and Vicki outside the JFK Library
Paul Revere and the girls

Along with all the wonderful historic sites,  we were in awe of the lovely architecture that is so Boston! We shopped and ate very well with an abundance of clam chowder, lobster bisque, lobster rolls, scallops, shrimp, and delectable desserts! We thoroughly enjoyed touring the JFK Library/Museum. Our lunch there was extra special as we overlooked Boston Harbor in all its splendor with the planes flying over us and landing at Logan Airport.

Michael flew in Wednesday and we all had dinner together – a highlight for this Mama!

It's good to be home and ready for all the beauty of fall....October looks to be very busy, including doctor appointments, fun outings with the grandsons, a visit from our NC kids/kiddies and a 3-day trip to Wisconsin with girlfriends.

Take care and I'll be back with an update in a few weeks!

Labor day 2011

Hope you all had a nice holiday?    Weather was very cool and pleasant!   Almost too cool, too fast?     We exercised and then met the neighbors for Monday morning breakfast.    Fun to catch up with everyone, including a phone call from our friend, Susie in Florida.   Came home and dug in with some house cleaning, weed pulling and window washing!    

Went to Anne and Patrick's for yummy supper - bar-b-que chicken, sweet corn, cole slaw, garlic toast and blueberry cream cheese pie!    The boys are excited with their new school year.   They like their teachers, along with new and old classmates!  
 Taking a temporary break from the blog and will update in 2-3 weeks!  Till then...
stay happy, safe and healthy.

Sunday, September 4

Aaahhh, a nice break from all the heat with nice cool temps today and more of the same coming all week long.   Unfortunately, no rain and it is so very dry here.     And those poor folks out east with water, water everywhere! 

Mark and I left for Mendota at 7:40 and met my brothers and sisters-in-law for breakfast at Cindy's.  Enjoyed catching up with them.    We went onto the nursing home.    Sooo good to see Dad.   He slept a lot, but ate most of his lunch (loved that peach pie).   He has definitely lost weight, but seems comfortable and had a good chat with Linda (nurse).   Mark visited his parents and had lunch with them and his sister, Karen.

Here are some stats that Mark put together from our trip:

From June 22-September 2, 2011, we covered 2,052 miles.

57 nights in marinas and 4 nights at anchor.
687 gallons of diesel fuel
cost of fuel - $3,090
73 locks
Traveled thru MI, NY, NJ, MD, VA and the Province of Ontario

We are very grateful to our friend, Bill from TN who suggested we finish the Loop clockwise...

 What a trip!

Saturday, September 3

HOT and sunny, but so good to be back home!     Caught up with neighbors, unpacked and enjoyed a visit from Anne, Patrick, Liam and Connor...

2 silly boys with blue lips and tongues after their suckers

Before we left in June, our garage door opener broke....Mark bought new one and repaired today in the intense heat and it was quite a time-consuming job.   I went to Meijer's for groceries.    We went to 4:30 Mass and fun to catch up with friends afterwards.    We ended up having a very delicious dinner with
 Paul and Margaret at Station 220.

Friday, September 2

As we were preparing Cartina for lift out this morning, the sounds of "Reveille" (bugle call) followed by the Star Spangled Banner came blaring across the water making my heart do a few flip fops!!!!    And  thoughts of Ryan so far far away...

All went well with the lift out.   It's another good marina and these guys (along with Art and crew in Dundalk) really have it together.   Cobb's has been a family business since 1958.   The workers wear royal blue shirts that read "We Haul Y'all"!   Made a trip to the post office with 5 boxes to ship home!    Took our rental car back and then got a ride to the airport.    Flew out at 3:30 and now we are headed home on the bus from Chicago.

Wishing you all a fun, safe Labor Day weekend!

Thursday, September 1

Welcome September and what a spectacular day in Norfolk - we kept busy all day packing, taking down canvas, getting rental car, doing laundry (best laundromat on the entire trip - maybe ever???)    It was huge, immaculate, an attendant on duty, had vending machines, rest rooms, air conditioning and on and on!    We've seen all kinds and this was "over the top"!!!

The Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek - Fort Story is right next to us and the largest amphibious base of its kind in the world..    A few years back, Brooke's Dad was in amphibious training here with the Marines!!!

Drove to Katherine's apartment in Virginia Beach and after visiting and picking up our mail which Anne had forwarded to her, we went to the Town Center (neat area with many shops/restaurants) and had wonderful dinner at P. F. Chang's (one of Mark's and my favorite restaurants)!   Our friends, Paul and Kathy are Katherine's parents and we have many fond memories of boating together when she and Ryan were little!!!
We walked around this lovely area after dinner!


Catrina is to be lifted out at 8 AM tomorrow and then  off to "home sweet home" hopefully?