20160731 + Campers

20160731 + Up early, D&J all packed and we headed to Jefferson Elementary to check in with the Troop,  We headed out early and stopped to get gas and some McD's for bfast.  A quick stop at the video store and then more windshield time to get to the Farm and drop off G.  L&I took D&J to camp, very nice trip.  The boys are so big and the process is getting better every year.  Back to farm and they discussed the reunion, I rested a bit and then Gma&paW, Mary and John, LG&I headed out for a nice dinner.  Home late and someone had hit the fire hydrant on our corner, spewing loads of water all over the place.  The Fire department was there trying to turn off the water.  Bed good time.  Vacation officially over :-(

20160730 - HOME

20160730 - Up in the am and had a nice bfast.  We loaded up one last time on this years Summer vacation and headed home.  We have been in the car long enough...  Home after 1111 miles.  We got unloaded, unpacked, cleaned things up and rushed around to get more things packed for D&J to go to Scout camp tomorrow.  It was a fun trip, the boys are getting too big for some things, different experience every year.  Not sure how many more of these we will get to to together so I cherish every minute.  I love this family.

20160729 - Secret Bunker

20160729 - Up early and we packed up and drove a short way to the Greenbrier resort. The town had recently been hit by a flash flood and the damage was unbelievable. The New Orleans Saints football team trains there and they have been helping the community rebuild. We walked up to the fancy hotel (minimum $600 a room / night) checked in and then took a tour of the congressional bunker. It was super cool. I loved it and I think the boys loved it too. On the road and not too much to see. We stopped in a small town to catch some Pokemon and have lunch, then hit the road hard to get to Gma&paB's for a Chinese dinner and to relax. Lilly was happy to see us.

20160728 + Many Sights

20160728 + Up in the am and all packed up to hit the road. We headed south out of VA towards the Greenbrier River where we had a cabin for the night. It was a long drive with many cool things to stop and see along the way. We ate at a couple cool places and when we got to the cabin we relaxed a bit and took a ride on the river. We drove on to a small town for a fantastic meal and finished the night with a camp fire D started for us listening to the rain patter on the metal roof of the shelter.

20160727 - Water Park

20160727 - Up in the am and L made me a HUGE double mushroom and bacon omlette. Everyone getting ready and J dropped his phone and shattered his screen. Boys out Pokemon hunting. L&I hanging out waiting for their return. Up over the mountain and G got to do a ropes course a couple of times. The skies got dark and we headed back to the room where D cooked brats outside in the rain for lunch. After lunch we headed to the resort waterpark and swam, went down huge water slides, rode a wave machine, played water basketball and hung out. We went back to the room for dinner and then JG&I headed back to the water park and stayed until they closed the place down. Home, tired and happy from a fun day.

20160726 + Spider Rower

20160726 + Up WAY TOO EARLY and we got something to eat for bfast. We headed to the lodge and geared up for the canoeing and kayaking adventure. We took a bus ride to the drop-off point, got some instructions and then set out on the Shenandoah River, LG&I in a canoe and D&J in kayaks. G was MORTIFIED the canoe was going to tip and screamed at every little rock in the boat, it was pretty funny. D&J did pretty good. J rowed with his arms way u pin the air and looked liked a spider having convulsions hahahah!

Done with our hot water adventure we had another bus ride back to the lodge and room. In the afternoon DG&I headed to Stanley VA to visit the Millcroft Farms Company, the makers of Shenandoah Valley Apple Candy, a gummy powder sugar covered delight GpaW remembers from his childhood. We were close to the factory so we made the trip, toured the factory and got GpaW one of every kind of candy they made.

Back to the room and I took a nap. up and over the top of the mountain for a magic show at the ski lodge. It was pretty good despite all the unsupervised children... We tried to at a place L had found, but it was outdoor seating only and it was still sprinkling. We ended up at an Italian place and had a huge meal. Bake to the room and DJG&I got our umbrellas and headed out for some Pokemon hunting and topped the night off with some ice cream.

20160725 - Putt & Swim

20160725 - Up in the am and had a big 3 pounds of bacon bfast.  We got ourselves together and headed to the main building to go swimming.  J&I checked out our adventure options.  Ran home for lunch and made grilled cheese, hard salami and turkey sandwiches.  On our way to the next activity we stopped and had a pretty fun time reserving our spots on the water for tomorrow.  We headed up over the mountain and down into the Massanuten bowl.  The boys and I had some fun racing go-karts and then we all played some putt-putt; I won, the boys are just an arguing mess...  On the way out we stopped at a general store for some ice cream and started the search for water shoes.  We checked out a ropes course and then headed up out of the bowl.  We drove through Elkin VA and stopped a couple places, no water shoes, but G got some snorkeling gear.  We stopped at a greasy spoon, Terrie's Kitchen for a great meal and awesome pie, D asked what creme was :-)  Back home and we changed and headed back to the pool.  I had to call AT&T to update our plan as the boys are burning through data like crazy on the trip.  Back to the room and then D&J headed out for some Pokemon hunting, so I downloaded it and headed out to join them with G.  All to bed in good time as we have an early morning tomorrow.

20160724 - 2 Churches, 1 Princess & 52 Degrees

20160724 -UP and Walter had prepared a nice breakfast for us. We said goodbye to our gracious host and hit the road. We stopped at 2 tiny churches, 1 Indian Princess and 52 degrees in the Seneca Caverns. We then spent a couple of hours going up and down and twisting around through the mountains. We stopped in Harrisburg VA for a burger and then on the Massanutten VA to get to our resort. We checked in, headed to the grocery and then back to the room to unpack. JG&I headed to the indoor pool to swim. All to bed in good time, tired from traveling all day.

20160723 - Off the Beaten Path

20160723 - Everyone up and getting things done: L packing, D&J gathering pipestone, G&I hit the post office, gas station, game store and car wash. We met up with D&J at the fire station for a tour D neglected to take earlier in the week... All home, car packed, bug bombs set off and we headed out for vacation. Not a lot to stop and do in this first leg (we've seen it before...) so we made good time into WV. We made one stop at a guys place that makes marbles, but he was closed, so we hit the local DQ and got back on the road. The next stop was the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, where I tried to drop all of them off so I could enjoy the rest of my vacation, but that didn't work... 

We stopped at a local diner, Giovanni's Restaurant, on the way out of town for some good food. On to the Relax Inn and Getaway Bed and Breakfast a half mile after the road ends in the middle of no place. It was a huge log cabin and Walter, the owner, was there to greet us give us the tour and show us the turkeys and deer running all over the property. We then hung out.by the pool and had some fun. G said he wanted to stay there all week. We got in our pjs and played a couple rounds of pool before heading to bed.

20160722 - Mind Freeing

20160722 - Up in the am and stopped at the gas station on the way to work to get D another newspaper for Scouts.  In and knocking things out so my mind is free for vacation.  Had a couple of the guys from the floor swing by for a chat and many emails.  Home and trying to plan this trip at the last minute, up late...

20160721 - Loose Ends Tied

20160721 - Up in the am and stopped at the gas station for a paper and doughnut to help D get his merit badge prereqs done.  On in to work and had normal meetings and trying to wrap up loose ends preparing for vacation next week.  Knocking things out like crazy.  D out running errands for me today.  LJ&G to the pool.  Home and had dinner with the fam.  Then J&I dismantled a huge speaker and swaped out the battery with another one we had that didn't work to make one working one D can sell.  G made everyone ice cream and D went to a friends for the night.  I was up late getting things in order for the trip.

20160720 + Hot Game and Swimming

20160720 +  UP in the am and dressing for a baseball game instead of work in my 2014 Gahanna All Start tshirt and shorts.  Stopped at the gas station on the way out of town and ran into Geoff, a boy D's age that played for me on the 8th & 9th grade baseball teams.  He had the same shirt on, good to see him.  I got a doughnut for myself and a newspaper for D for one of his merit badges.  On into work and preparing for a quick morning before heading to the Clippers game with a couple of employees.  It was a HOT game, but a good time.  After the game I headed home and went to meet L&G at the pool for a swim to cool down from sitting in the sun for the afternoon.  D&J joined us later and they then stayed there for dinner.  G&I ran to the grocery to get ice cream and then DQ to pick up coneys for dinner.  All home and D's friend Austin came to spend the night.

20160719 + Too Light, Just Right

20160719 + Up in the am and in to work. Had some morning meetings. Spent some time on the floor, we had a laptop catch fire today :-o Home and Chris Pettit stopped over for a visit, summer catch up and a beer. Had some dinner and then helped L apply some grout to her backsplash that she didn't like... So L ran to the store and I dug out the light grout. L got home with her darker grout and got busy putting it on. It looks great!

20160718 - D's Last Game of the Season

20160718 - Up in the am to rolling thunder and a dog under my feet.  Got ready and headed in to work through pouring rain which made the trip extra stressful.  Full day at work at the desk and walking around checking on things, getting organized and getting things done.  Finished a bit late and headed to Canal Winchester for Dylan's last baseball game.  It was a really good game, the boys were fired up, playing well and other than a guy on the other team getting hit in the face with a fastball it was a great game to watch.  The boys won and were very happy.  A nice way to end their season!

J hitched a ride to scouts and after pictures G&I headed home to get him.  Home, we got J, I let Doc know I was skipping Bible Bangers tonight and would be on vacation next week.  JG&I headed to the McClain's where Bill and I did a bit of plumbing and got the old water heater to the curb.  It didn't take us long, but long enough for G and Brady to concoct a plan to have G spend the night...  Work done, J&I headed home leaving G behind.  Home and I had some leftovers, D home, boys cleaned up, all to bed.

20160717 - Cuts, Tryouts, Heaters and Bugs?

20160717 - Up in the am and L&I headed over to Varney's to get J. They were painting the trim on the top of the house and we had some fun watching them plan to get a bees nest down. We ran to Lowe's to get so more tile and of course they were out so we had to run to another Lowe's to get the rest of it. We drove through Rally's on the way home and got so greasy food. Home and ate and L got to work on the final piece of backsplash, D packed up some items we are giving up on selling on ebay and took them to the Goodwill with J. When they got back I showed D how to cut the tiles and he took of cutting for L. G&I headed to Pickerington for the Ohio Elite tryouts. Brady was there and the 2 of them settled in for the 43 hour tryout. It was very organized and ended with all the boys there being split up into 2 teams and having a game. It was amazing to watch the talent on the field was top notch. We stopped at Steak'n Shake on the way home to reward the boys for doing great at the tryouts. Home and the backsplash looks great! G&I changed and then we all headed over to the McClain's for a cookout and water heater replacement party. We figured out we had the wrong kind of water heater so we headed to Lowe's quick and picked up the right kind and headed home to install it. Water heater installed in no time and then nothing... It would not light... ended up being a tiny pressure valve on the top of the water heater. I replaced the new valve with the one from the old water heater and it works. We made a late night trip to Meijer to see if they had plumbing supplies and struck out. Home L had the house stripped and doing laundry, convinced we have some sort of infestation based on the weird bits/rash patched JG&I have developed over the weekend... J&G sleeping in the living room. D home an hour late... Finally to bed after a super busy weekend.

20160716 + Hard Working Girls

20160716 + Up in the am and got J&G working on installing the top furring strip under the countertop. I showed D how to relist things on ebay and noticed HIS NEW PHONE SCREEN IS CRACKED AGAIN! THAT IS 3 PHONE SCREENS THIS SUMMER!!! Went outside to calm down and not EXPLODE... Sent D to pick up an auction item on the other side of town. Got the dishwasher ripped out, counter and sink leveled, dishwasher reinstalled. Everything is ready to install tiles and L got started. Her friend Tiff came over to help and they made good time. I started cutting up the barn siding to put under the counter and cut tiles for the girls in between. I was going to run over and help Bill put in a water heater, but the time slipped away and wanted to make sure the girls were ok with the tile saw... Bill came over and helped us and we got the back wall done and as much of the barn siding installed as we could. Everything looks great! J headed to his buddy Donovan's for the night. We got cleaned up and met the McClain's at Coach's for Tom's dad's bday party. It was fun. Home not to late and got everyone to bed.

20160715 - Swing and a Miss

20160715 - Up early and heading in so I could spend some time in the new process to learn and study it. The VW dinged and said get gas. Went to the gas station and debit card declined. Tried it again, declined. Took it inside, thought they had it working, it crashed their system... On to gas station #2, Repeat process above... Finally got gas. On to Tim Horton's to get coffee and doughnuts for the team, card declined... Finally got doughnuts and coffee and on the road to work. Talked to the bank on the drive in, there was some sort of glitch at the first gas station that locked my card for 2 hours... FANTASTIC! In to work only 15 min early after wasting 45 minutes trying to get gas and doughnuts for people... At work, Printer doesn't work... Waiting to see what else is messed up...  Finished the day early and ran up to the Scout Store to get awards.  Stopped to get a hair cut then on to D's game.  D did not have a very good game, too many errors as catcher and striking out.  Gma&paW down to see the game and Courtland stopped by to watch a bit.  After the game we battled the traffic at Polaris to have a nice meal at Quaker Steak & Lube.  Headed home after dinner and chilled out watching a movie and planning for the weekend.

20160714 + LEGO Guns

20160714 + Up in the am and into work. Incredibly busy fast day. Headed home and had some dinner. L&I hung out on the back porch and talked to D a bit, trying to get him to start thinking more than only 22.13 seconds ahead... D&I relisted some ebay items. J showed me the LEGO guns he and Conor built last night, pretty cool. Penn stopped over for a beer.

20160713 - 1 and Done

20160713 - Slow start into the office and a bunch of quick meetings in the am.  We have multiple customers onsite and big project beating on us...  I headed out to D's Jr. State Tournament and met up with L&J in the stands.  It was a quick game and D's team lost 1-0... Disappointed and back to work...  Finished the busy day and headed home.  L had a nice dinner and we all ate together.  D headed out to stay with a friend for the night, the Mallon's brought over their dog and for a visit while their hose was getting exterminated and G&I headed to the McClain's to replace their water heater.  After further investigation we believe it is not the water heater, but the AC drain leaking on the floor.  We are going to watch it for a couple of days to confirm the water heater is fine.  That will same him $500.  I told Tom and Bill about G not playing for Gahanna next year and coach John sent out an email to the whole team letting them know...  Home and Jack;s buddy Conor is spending the night.

20160712 + Second Class Jack

20160712 + Up in the am and to work.  L took the boys to a movie today.  Very busy fast day, worked late.  Home and ate fast, then took J to the Scout Board of Review.  J achieved Second Class :-)  He was the only Scout to get a rank advancement tonight so the meeting was much shorter than usual :-)  Home and J helped me take apart the kitchen faucet and find the blockage, all working good now.  Boys up watching MLB All-Star game.  Stayed up watching TV with L a bit

20160711 - Officially an Ohio Elite

20160711 - Up in the am and struggling to go back to work, YAWN.  Headed in and had an incredibly full fast productive day of getting things lined up and knocked down.  We locked the boys phones away until they got their Boy Scout list done for the day, it worked ;-)  L got the boys to the Dr for their camp and sports physicals and to the pool.  I stayed a bit late, ran home, ate quick, scanned in the physicals, made copies and then went to Scouts with D&J.  I dropped off the physicals, got some blue merit badge cards and then ran to John's house.  I talked to John about G and baseball and our plans to go with the Ohio Elite next year...  He was very understanding and it was a titch emotional as we have coached our boys together for the last 6 years :-|  Back to Scouts to get D&J, home, looked at the sink faucet to try and figure out why the pressure is dwindling... then to Bible Bangers where we spent the evening catching up on what is going on in each others lives.  Home and up late at the PC.

20160710 ‡ End of Season

20160710 ‡ Up in the am and ready for some baseball.  All of us moving a bit slower today from the festivities last night...  We managed to get breakfast and get to the field before the game.  The boys were not in it to win it so they lost the game and we were done with baseball for the season.  We loaded up the car and headed home, Tom was our only passenger for this leg.  We made one stop in Columbus IN to see a veteran's memorial that was supper cool and had emotional letters from soldiers on the pillars.  Back on the road and drove straight to a hug flea market in Ohio where we got some good fair food and a funnel cake that took 20 minutes to make...  Back on the road for a short hope home.  We unloaded everything and headed to the pool to relax from the long drive.  We grabbed some food on the way home and then hunkered in for a movie before heading to bed.

Interesting Statistic: G's team scored 493 runs throughout the season.  G was part of 110 of them, 22% (57 runs he scored, 53 RBIs).

20160709 - G MVP

20160709 - Up early in the am and all down to breakfast then to the ballfields. We played a really good team the first game and we were not awake and had too many errors to pull out the win even with a strong late comeback... Everyone kind of broke up for lunch, I stayed and scouted another team we would eventually play. The second game the boys were ready to play and we won 21 to 6. G had 3 double a single and struck out 9 batters straight to win the game. The coach from the other team awarded G the MVP for our team, it was really cool We had plans for everyone to go to BWs after the game but somehow that got derailed and everyone broke out and returned to the hotel, some of the kids swam, L&I refused to be the designated parents tonight, but still were the only ones really paying attention and checking on the kids running around the hotel... We hung out on the patio and had drinks, listened to music and danced.

20160708 + Counters Corn and Gravy

0160708 + Up early to get ready for the countertop delivery, 9am and they are still not here...  Finally the guys showed up, everything looked good,  everything fit, new countertop in!  I installed the cooktop and the sink plumbing, all good, on the road to Columbus Indiana by 1pm.  On the way we stopped for lunch and there was a cornfield nearby that since we forgot to get our 4th of July picture taken on the 4th we got it done on the 8th.  Corn is plenty tall and not the tallest we saw on the way.  After a couple hours of riding I made a slight detour to see the World's only courthouse with a tree growing out of the top of it and tour a couple of the old building around the Greensburg IN town square.  On to the hotel through some back roads where we saw some interesting sights, like some metal presidents in the back of Jeeps, corn and soybeans...  We checked in then ran to a flea market where we found a huge ant.  We then got the troops together and headed to Skooter's in downtown Columbus and had a great meal.  After dinner I spent 3 hours in the pool with the team as all the other parents were somewhere...