31 July 2017

Adventures in Virginia's Capital

Kent and I had a couple of fun outings down to Richmond in the month of July. 
One of the days we went down to the Science Museum of Virginia to see an exhibit about Leonardo DaVinci. We were surprised to find a line to get into the museum, probably because it was a Saturday.
 One of the cool things about the exhibit was that some of his illustrations had been recreated. 
 This one was his version of a flying machine.
 This was his version of a self-propelled cart.
Another cool feature was a sight and sound show highlighting his works.
One of the exhibits gave information about the Mona Lisa, after it had been analyzed with modern day technology.
After going to the museum we went to see a movie at an old vintage movie theater, called the Byrd.
 It was a grand old movie house built in 1928.
 One of the attractions is that an organist plays a Wurlitzer organ before most of the movies start.
 The chandelier at the theater.
Some of the ornate decorations in the lobby of the theater. I'll have to admit that the seats were a bit run-down and shabby, but it was a fun experience to hear the organ and see the theater.
 On another day I organized a trip with my Bible study group to go to Saint John's Episcopal Church in Richmond to see an re-enactment of Patrick Henry's famous, "Give me liberty, or give me death!" speech.
 The weather was surprisingly not too hot and humid, considering it was July.
 This is one of the oldest churches in Virginia.

We sat in the balcony of the church to get the best view of the reenactment.  
We weren't allowed to take photos during the performance, but some of the actors came out afterwards and posed for pictures. I didn't know that George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were in the church when the speech was given.
Here's a photo of our group.
After the Patrick Henry reenactment Kent and I had signed up for a Segway tour of Richmond. The weather was actually about as perfect as you could hope for in July!
 There were more hills in Richmond than on other Segway tours we've been on.
One time I almost lost control going down a big hill, but managed to stop before I crashed.
 It was interesting learning some of the history of Richmond.
This statue of Washington is near the state capital.
 Here's a picture of us in front of the state capital building, which was designed by Thomas Jefferson.
A side view of the capital building.
 The Governor's mansion is right by the capital building, so we rode past it, too.
The Governor's mansion, which I toured many years ago. We 

19 July 2017

Tyler's Family moves to Alabama

In July, Tyler's family spent time in Michigan with Rachel's family en-route to his new assignment at Fort Rucker, Alabama, for his Captains Career Course.  Elaine and I flew up there to spend a couple of days with them before driving with them to Alabama. 
 The kids always love driving in Great-Grandpa's golf cart. 
 And love running around the yard and fields in Olivet, Michigan.
 One day Rachel took us to Lake Michigan to swim and play, where she used to go with her family when she was growing up.
The weather wasn't too warm, but we braved the chill since it was the only day we could go to the lake.
 Andrew and Sylvia liked playing in the sand as much as anything else!
Splashing in the waves....
and swimming in the water.  There were more waves than we expected in a lake, but Lake Michigan is a very large--some would even say "great"-- lake. 
  While we were in Michigan we had a "Moana" birthday party for Andrew

Rachel made a really awesome "Moana" cake
Too bad Tyler's eyes were closed for this cute family picture!  
 Andrew had a pinata for his party. It was very hard to break, but they finally did it!
Some of Andrew's second cousins came to his birthday party, but we didn't get pictures of them. 
Also not sure why we didn't have any photos of Rachel's parents, since we were staying at their house!
We all went to the bowling alley for even more birthday fun
We gave Andrew this Maui fish hook for his birthday, and he thought it was pretty cool.
After having fun in Michigan, the day came to start our trip. We loaded up the van and said goodbye to the Judd family.
It was a big adventure for Rachel who was 8+ months pregnant - with twins!
Unfortunately as we neared Alabama, the van had trouble. So we rented a U-haul van, and Elaine and I towed it the rest of the way to Alabama while Tyler and the family drove in their Toyota.  
It worked out okay--Rachel, Elaine and the kids waited in a McDonald's while Tyler and Kent rented the U-haul and got the van attached to the trailer hitch.
We got to Fort Rucker and were able to get the keys for their on-base housing and go right to their new home.
They were without furniture for a couple of days so we sat on pillows and slept on air mattresses for a couple of nights.
The kids found ways to have fun even in an empty house.
The moving van with the rest of their belongings came from Colorado, and we all helped unload.  Even some neighbors came to help 
The kids were happy to see their own toys
The kids were happy to see their own toys
We set up the kids new bunk beds - they were excited about that. 
Elaine and I flew back to DC to our regular life.  It was a fun adventure, and glad we got to travel with Tyler and Rachel's family!