Sunday, July 22, 2012

Wakoola the water garden

This is one of our favorite places. The kids and I said there should be a lunch place at Wakoola so we can stay longer.It's a serene beautiful place, full of frogs and bullfrog tadpoles, damselflys and giant koi. And the kids can flick water at me to hear me screech.

There was a small koi in this pond and the kids were in hysterics as I narrated the fish swimming amongst all those gi-normous koi.

Rock slide on a hot day

One afternoon, we went to Poole's Mill, which has natural rock slides. This was part of the Cherokees' land and used many years before turning into a grist mill.The kids had a TIME once they got their footing. Watching them slip and slide at first gave me heart palpitations.

These are the kinds of things memories are made of. Not plunking your child down in front of a movie or just allowing them to play video games. This is what the kids and I have always done.

Tybee Island, Georgia

Cort came for summer with his mind set on all of us going to the beach. I reminded him he was going after our summer together but he said he wanted to go to the beach with me so off we went to Tybee Island.
I'd gone to Tybee many years ago - it actually was Hayes' first beach trip. It's close to Savannah and a quaint town, although quite busy this go-round at the height of summer.
We made our first stop at the Tybee Marine Education Center - quite nice for such a small place. They have a touch tank, which Hayes dives right into but takes Cort a bit of time to warm to the idea.

Then it was off to the beach. This pictures are from our afternoon romp when it was less crowded and it was low tide. There was gobs of seaweed and both times we were in the ocean there were dolphins swimming nearby. That was soooo cool.

Speaking of dolphins, I promised the kids a dolphin tour.

As Cort reminded me, it was his first time on a boat and he was thrilled!
Of course, nothing compares to seeing dolphins. I'll spare you the 500 dolphin images and give you the best couple, including this pelican yoga pose:

We did all the tourist-y stuff, including stopping to feed alligators at this popular restaurant. This one snapped Hayes' bait off her line, which made her jump and I laughed, considering this is the girl who wanted to go work at Australia Zoo with the late Steve Irwin.

Speaking of tourist-y ... !
I sent this one to my friend Nick while we were at the beach. It's entitled: My Mom's So Weird.
We had stopped at a gas station for a break right before we reached Savannah and saw this dead beetle. That's right - we had to pick it up!
Our parting family portrait ... we had such a great time together!

Fashion show

All of a sudden one evening, this moppet in a blue hoodie and my black patent pumps appeared in the living room
and said, loudly,"Announcing: The Hayes!" Then there was a lot of giggling and whispering and "no, you were supposed to say ... "
And then The Hayes appeared in one of my shirts and heels and sang me a song. She has a lovely voice but I couldn't pay attention due to the outfits.

Oops, lost my shoe!

Show change.
The show continued the next night with just a fashion display from my closet in which things I'd just gotten back from the cleaners wound up askew on the floor. :/ Who cares - we had great fun! I loved it ... and what great material I have for their teen years!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Goodbye, 'Rah

My friend, Sarah Greenhalgh, of Upperville, Va., was murdered last Sunday, July 8. She was a confidant and we shared many stories about the steeplechase community and our newspaper careers. It is a tragedy this 48-year-old woman no longer graces this world.This is one of her pictures and she was well-known for her race photos over the years:

This is how I'll always associate Rah: with a big camera in front of her face

And this is my favorite photo of Rah she used as a Facebook profile picture. She was visiting her sister out west.

May justice be swift for you, Sarah. I will miss you.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Tennessee Aquarium

I consider the Tennessee Aquarium to be the best I've been to in the southeast and Hayes hadn't been since she was 3 or 4 so this was a nice trip on our way home from seeing Aunt Susan, Uncle Bill and Cousin Rhett at Rhett's regatta.
Yeah, I took that of the shark. Enhanced with Instagram.

Here's Hayes with the Tennesse sturgeon as the aquarium tries to save the population.
It's really hard to get Cort to touch stuff but once he does, he is absolutely thrilled!

Warning at the alligator display. Oh darn.

Turtle yoga:

That kid loves snakes and so this one moving all about in the tank just mesmerized her.

So now we're past the touching-freaks-me-out thing and Cort was reaching for sharks.

Hayes was getting him in good position where he could get sharks and stingrays.

It's always been a chore to get her away from ANY touch tank.

If you recall back in the spring when we went to Callaway's butterfly garden, Cort could barely get close to a butterfly. At the aquarium, we walked into the butterfly house and one immediately landed on him. He was ecstatic. On the flip side, Hayes couldn't get any butterflies and got a bit annoyed about it ... especially since I'd made her leave the touch tank to go to the butterfly house.