Saturday, June 28, 2008

More Tennessee Pics

Jamie and Ally

Dani and Mary - they might as well be sisters!

If you are familiar with Pigeon Forge, then you probably know where the Applewood Farmhouse and Restaurant is. Directly across from the Restaurant is a small creek. It was extremely hot today and Dad allowed Dudley to get in and swim around. He is used to swimming in the pond next to their house, but he wasn't used to swimming against the current. In this video, Jamie picked him up to give him a break from trying to swim upstream, but when Jamie started to lower him to the water, his little legs start pumping away as if he is afraid that Jamie will just drop him in the water and he wouldn't get a chance to start swimming. So cute!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Gatlinburg Getaway

I have been to Gatlinburg many times. Things were a little different this time around. My family headed down to Tennessee last weekend. Since Jay and I are headed to Hawaii this fall, we are saving our money for that trip. We decided to join my family on Thursday evening. We met up at Dixie Stampede on Thursday night. As usual, the food was delicious. Then we headed out to where they were staying at a resort off of Walden's Creek Road. The resort has a putt-putt course, 9-hole golf course, a pool, and badminton court.

Guess who is along for his first family vacation?
Dani showing them all how to play.

The next morning we all met up at Pancake Pantry (downtown Gatlinburg) at about 8 a.m. Yummy!
(I think Dani is still wishing she was in her bed.)
My delicious, chocolate chip pancakes.
Quite delicious as you can see. I ordered some peanut butter syrup and it was perfect for topping my pancakes.

Checking out the golf course at the resort.
Explaining the game and holes.

Jay won the one shot game. It was about a 60 yard shot and whomever ended up the closest to the hole won the prize. I didn't say it was a big prize :o)

BJ showing us how to properly swing.

Jay swinging away.

Dad testing his swing.

The golf course left quite a bit to be desired but it was fun nonetheless. There was a creekbed running the length of the side of the course. It wasn't unusual for us to be "chipping" up and out of the creek bed. Can you say amateur? I think this was the first time that they had ever really "played" golf.
Yes, I know, it looks like I am going to just putt the ball. I tried to hit it really hard, but it was reminiscent of my highschool PE class. I believe the farthest I ever hit the ball was like 9 yards. I can play volleyball, but that dinky white dimpled ball sitting on the ground is way too hard for me to hit.

The guys went for a treacherous ATV ride in the mountains. Some of the trails they took were the same ones mom and I rode our horses on. One big difference. The horse has a brain and he doesn't want to fall down anymore than you (the rider) does. ATV's don't have brains, they just go where you tell them. Dad said it was pretty challenging and there were several places that were not easy to maneuver. Their guide gave them good instructions about which gears to be in and when to gas the machine so they wouldn't start sliding backwards down the steep trails.

The trail ride was great. There were some very steep trails, but we had good horses and they just plodded along. The views were pretty awesome. I tried to get Bailey's head in this picture to show that I am truly sitting on top of him when I took this picture and the pictures following The mountains were quite gorgeous. Of course the great thing about this particular horse stables was the trails were unguided. This definitely appealed to us since we have horses at home and definitely know how to ride. We have been trail riding many times and it was nice to go without a guide.

There was a neat little Garden Cafe and shop that we stopped at the on the way back from our horseback ride/atv ride. We bought some delicious Cranberry Orange salsa, Red Raspberry jam and Peanut Butter syrup at this little store. I know Cranberry Orange sounds really disgusting, but I tried it and it was wonderful, definitely more sweet than anything else. Dani and Mary eating at the cafe.

Jamie and his wad of Big Chew. (bubble gum)

Me atop of my palomino trail horse.

Jay and I in front of the Garden Cafe.

Dad and Mom - the pair that started our family vacations. This year I believe is our largest group on our family vacation. Dad, Mom, me, Jay, Dani, Brent, Ally, Jamie H, Mary W and last, but not least, Dudley Waltrip (the dog.) It definitely makes for some fun times. I didn't take pictures of the Great Putt-Putt Championship, where Ally showed us all how to play with 3 holes in one and a game only 2 over par in which the Grand Prize ended up being $10. :o) Thanks Mom and Dad for a great time with the family.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Business is heating up....

.....Things seem to be getting more and more hectic as the summer begins. The jail is at max capacity and we are rearranging the staff a little bit. Thankfully, I am not working a full day tomorrow. I will arrive about 6 a.m. and rush around finishing things up for a few hours and then Jay and I are headed to Gatlinburg. My family has been down there since Saturday and we are just going to spend the last couple days with them. Pictures will hopefully follow since we are supposed to have wireless internet at our hotel. My family is out in the mountains somewhere. I tried calling 4 of their cell phones tonight and none of them were in service. Anyway, let's hope while I am away again that I don't wake up to any voicemails on my phone from the jail. I really don't want to spend my Saturday trying to track down criminals like I did a couple weekends ago. Such drama!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A New Adventure...

Well, last week we finally took the step. We are now carpooling together. It sometimes means that I get to work early, but at least we only have one gas bill now :o) Jay's schedule is such that he can drop me off on his way to work and pick me up on the way back. Of course, when the school year starts back up we won't be able to do it as easily but it's nice for now while we can. Just pray for our cars. One gets to sit at home and the other gets worked overtime. Both of our cars are old and have lots of miles, but we are blessed to have minimal problems and mostly just routine car care bills.

Nothing much else is going on. I have started picking up hours at my second job again. It's nice to be able to work from home and the hours are flexible based on their work flow.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Another Wacko Weekend

Mom, Dani and Mary getting ready for Father's Day dinner at Dani/Mary's house. Mary, affectionately known as Whitey, will be joining us on our family vacation next week!
Although all the folks at the apartment weren't biologically family, they might as well be. Jamie and Dani are on the couch, Ally is in the chair with my brother hidden behind her. Mary is in the far chair and her brother is in the chair on the right. Brent's girl showed up a little later.
I normally claim to know this younger sister of mine, but for some reason she was acting a little goofier than normal. For some reason she decided to take this chair apart and was having a hard time getting it back together.
Jay and I got up very early (about 6 a.m.) this morning and drove over 3 hours to get to our church and then to Dani's house for lunch.
Of course, Dudley is part of the family too!!

The weekend actually started when we left straight from the jail and headed to Akron, Ohio. Jay had bought tickets for Glenn Beck's comedy act. He got up Saturday morning and went to the Insider's breakfast with Glenn. It was an informal breakfast, photo shoot and Q&A session. Only those who are "Insiders" can go. And of course, my husband is a huge fan so he is an Insider. I stayed at the hotel and worked over the phone with the jail. Unfortunately, we had 4 escape from the jail Friday night. My boss was out of town and nearly unreachable on her cell phone. When Jay woke me up at 9:15 I had 2 voicemails from the jail admin staff. I was freaking out. Called them right away and they told me about the 4 escapees. Cathy, another office gal, made it to the office and they threw me on speaker phone and I walked them through how to bring up the video footage from the dorm where they escaped. Fortunately, we got two of them back and we are working on the other two dingbats. Sigh, so much for getting to sleep in for the morning :o)

Jay and his favorite TV/Radio host, who also happens to be very hilarious. And with Jay and I being from Cincinnati, we knew that Glenn liked Graeter's Icecream. When we attended GBS, we were about 6 blocks from the Graeter's Icecream Factory. Jay told him that and Glenn was disappointed that we hadn't gotten the recipe. Righht!!! Glenn had shipped in Graeter's Icecream for all the Insiders. Jay brought my favorite back to the hotel - Black Raspberry Chip, which is Raspberry flavored icecream with chocolate chips. It's the best!! And if you go to the Icrecream parlor it is pretty expensive. Thank goodness, I am now back home and ready to face this crazy week at work.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Grand Prize Winner

Congratulations, Dad! You are the grand prize winner of the "Father's Day Riddle Contest." You and one of your children will be attending this weekend's Nascar Nationwide race at Kentucky Speedway. All expenses paid!!!!!

We Love You!

To those of you who haven't been privy to what occurred today. Let me fill you in. As you know, it is nearly Father's Day and we wanted to surprise our Dad with something. He is always making up silly riddles and poems for us to try to figure out so we turned the tables. It was actually Dani's idea. She purchased two tickets and then decided she would make him work for his Father's Day gift. I called him this morning at about 8:30 with the following message (I changed my voice as much as I could and even pronounced his last name incorrectly!)

Yes, sir, please do not hang up. This is an important message. You have been selected as the Grand Prize Winner. However, to claim your prize you must solve a riddle. Hints will be arriving via your cell phone, email and various other ways. If you believe you have solved the riddle at any given time, feel free to email your solution to your 4 kids.

Then I hung up. A few minutes later, his youngest daughter, gave him the first hint: "A." Then throughout the day, all 5 of us kids gave him hints via phone calls and email. The letters and words we gave him spelled: Sparta, Kentucky. This is the address of the Kentucky Speedway. The great part is, I think it was a total surprise. The last step of the contest/riddle was to come and visit this blog. So most likely he will be the first person to view this blog as I am posting it as soon as my sister calls and tells me he has figured it out, or if he can't figure it out (which I highly doubt) this post will show him his prize (pictured above.) Yes, we are a goofy family, but we sure do have fun, especially when we are getting back at Dad for all those ridiculous riddles he always made us try to figure out :o)

Of course, one of the most hilarious coincidences: He just posted about the Kentucky Speedway on his blog this week!

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Sunday Evening cookout

Dani texted me this afternoon and invited Jay and me over to her house for a cookout. Yes, it was a Kentucky cookout. As you can see, this food is being served from the tailgate of a truck.

True Kentucky grill out

My two sisters, Ally and Dani holding up their warm s'mores

Dani and her roomie, Mary, who is essentially part of our family

She just wouldn't smile...sigh...lil sisters can be so annoying :o)

I somehow managed to chop off Brent's head, but he is over there eating, then Dani, Ally, Holley (Brent's girlfriend) and Mary all testing out the small grill

I think Dani's s'more was pretty hot

Amy and Kyle just chillin'