Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A New Picture of Immaculée

We just received this new picture of our little darling yesterday.  Please come home soon, sweet angel.  Love,  Mama & Daddy

Auntie Di

This is our dear friend Diane (Clare and Hutson call her Auntie Di).  She is the owner of a wonderful shop of the most beautiful sacred and religious art you will ever find.  She is a precious Catholic woman and we feel honored to call her our friend.  Thank you, Auntie Di, for your witness.  We love you.

Diane holding a beautiful crucifix which she and her daughter purchased in Bratislava Slovakia a few years ago.  We just purchased this fabulous crucifix to grace our home.

Brycie, Clare, and Auntie Di

Brycie, Clare, Hutson, and Auntie Di

Thanks, Diane, for your friendship

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Illinois Adventure

On our way home from Illinois, we planned to go by St. Peters, a northern suburb of St. Louis, to see Brycie's cousin and her family.  As we were going south toward St. Louis, our GPS kept trying to route us west, so, we finally decided to see where it would take us.  Well, it took us to Grafton, Illinois, a small town on the Mississippi River.  As it turned out the river had been flooding the lower-lying areas.  The GPS told us to turn left and "take Ferry."  What do you mean "take Ferry" we asked.  Guess what?  It meant exactly that.  So, us flatlanders boarded the Ferry on the mighty Mississip' and headed across to the other side.  We had no idea where we were but were confident the GPS (which we've named "Gordo") would steer us right.  We went 15 miles or so, and lo and behold, another Ferry, which was closed for business.  We waited a while, along with some other cars, and after a bit, they opened the gates and let us on.  Across we went on another river.  We're still not sure where we were.  Once across the second river, we had to drive several miles in 6-8 inch water covering the roadway.  Then, all of a sudden, we came around a corner and were in St. Peters.  We almost felt like the Griswold's in National Lampoon's Vacation.  Jim got to play the part of Clark Griswold, and Brycie got to play the part of Beverly D'Angelo.  No one was available to play the part of Cousin Eddie.

This is the first Ferry at Grafton, Illinois

Some of the warning signs

Notice the house and the water in the garage.

The river was completely over the banks.

Here we are getting ready to board the second Ferry.

Yep, there we are.

Right in the middle of the Mississippi River

Brycie enjoying the adventure.

Gordo the GPS has us right smack dab in the middle of the river.

Here is what we had to drive through.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Fourth of July, 2010 -- Jacksonville, Illinois

Cousin Darcy was so nice to bring some sparklers and smoke bombs for Hutson and Clare.  She didn't know if the loud noises would frighten them, so she brought safe fireworks.  So thoughtful.  Thanks, Darcy, for a fun time.  You're a good cousin.  In the evening we all went to Jacksonville Lake to watch the big fireworks display.

Happy 4th of July from Ridgeview Winery, Mt. Sterling, IL
Cousin Darcy

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Vacation To Jacksonville, Illinois For July 4th Holiday

We haven't been to see Jim's sister, Janis, and her family in Illinois for a while, so we decided to spend the Fourth of July Holiday with them.  The accomodations were wonderful, the food was spectacular, and the company is always fun.  We had a good time just relaxing, taking photos, enjoying being in the woods, eating fresh corn on the cob, painting toenails, eating fresh peaches, watching fireflies, eating fresh tomatoes, going to one of the area wineries, eating homemade bread .  .  .

Jim doing what Jim likes to do - take photos.

Hutson relaxing.

Brycie's photo of the lily pad and frog.

Darcy's dog Sassy.

Clare relaxing.

Darcy, Darcy's dog, Sassy, and Hutson.

Clare and her sunglasses.

Jim at the vineyard.

The family, Darcy, Dave, Janis, Clare, Brycie, Jim, and Hutson at the winery.


Hummingbird outside the kitchen window.

Brycie doing what Brycie likes to do - take photos.

Water Lily and goldfish.

Aunt Jan at the Winery.

Niece/Cousin Darcy

I said, "Dave."

Hutson chillin'

Interesting spider web.

Fresh corn on the cob - Yum!

Another Funky Snack with Ela and Angelo

We've learned that Ela and Angelo will eat most anything.  Well, here's the latest .  .  .  cheese-flavored larva (the same critter you will find at the bottom of a bottle of Mescal).  The second picture gives you all the nutritional information, in case you're interested.  As Clare puts it, some of the stuff they eat is downright 'gusting.  All of us but two (and you know who you are) tried the Larvets. 
Wanna bite?

This is the important stuff for those watching their weight.

Oh yeah!

In the hand .  .  .

In the mouth .  .  .


Hutson's turn.

Guess who liked them?  Not much different than scorpions, which seem to be a Chinese delicacy.

The bravest one of all, Ela.

Ela and Katie washing down the bugs.