Friday, November 28, 2008

Can't sleep...

.....Soooo, I write. :) Today has been a very interesting day. It started quite early for Mandy and me because we decided to join all the crazy people and go to Walmart at 5:00 am. Did I mention we are crazy?? We both had something we wanted to get and then Angie wanted us to pick some items up. Well.....we got there like 15 minutes after they opened and the items I wanted were already gone! :shock: I couldn't believe it. Thankfully, we got the things Angie wanted though. It was so crazy there though and we stood in line for 45 minutes to check out like 3 things! We made it home by 7:00 am though and then I of course went BACK to bed! I wasn't feeling too good, felt like a train had hit me or something. :) Also was having a very bad sore throat. So finally around 9 something I had to get up and get going with my day. :) (didn't want to)

So sometime during the day my Dad made and deal with Lane and me and said if we cleaned up the basement he would buy couches for down here soon! So, Lane and I got very excited and started on it right away. Our basement basically consist of one big room (and our bedroom) but it's filled with lots of baby stuff, stuff that Mandy and I brought over when we moved in, and then lots of stuff that belonged to Angie's parents. Originally the room was supposed to be used as a "game" room sort of. We have a pool table, air hockey table, and then a huge tv but we never use any of it. Oh and a dart board! :) Anyway, nough about that! Lane and I worked really hard and got it ALL cleaned up and amazed my Dad! :)

While I was cleaning I found something that was kind of weird. It was the divorce papers that my Dad had filed. I've heard about them, but never actually read them. So today I did....I never acutally knew the year they divorced because they were separated for several years, or so it seemed. I found out today though they were divorced in 1999, so I was 11 years old. It's hard to believe, but I was that old and still have very VERY few memories of my Dad living at home. :( It was kind of tough seeing all the stuff in the papers and especially my Mom's signature. Haven't seen that for quite some time.....It was also hard just because I knew my Mom had changed so much. She became a Christian after the divorce so it was not something she was at all proud of.

So after cleaning up Lane, we all watched a movie that was on TV, "The Family Man" (not saying I recommend this movie at all!) It was very odd that of all days this movie come on though. "The Family Man" was the last movie I had ever seen in theaters with both my Mom and Dad. I remembered they had been separated and My Mom took Mandy and I to see this film and invited my Dad to meet us there (around Christmas time) So he came...and it was the first time ever I saw my Dad cry. The movie was over and I remember thinking..."wow, they are going to get back together!" I was wrong...but apparently this movie has some importance in my Dad's life too. He remembered seeing the film and also remembered crying. This was the first time we have watched that movie since that day at the theater, but my Dad once again cried at the end. Of course he tried to hide it, which I understand, Angie was home, but was so neat to me. I know my Dad misses my Mom. And I love that he does. I don't love that he is hurting, but I'm glad she isn't just forgotten by him. My Dad will always remember her.

So, I'm not really sure why I'm sharing that with all of you, but I was laying in bed trying to sleep and these thoughts just kept going round and round in my head. I prayed a lot and then decided to just get up and blog.

Guess I should get some sleep now though! :) Oh, never finished bout the couches!!!! lol Lane, my Dad, and I all went to the store and picked out a leather couch and recliner for the basement, so on Sunday they will be delivered!!!! YAY! :) Now we can watch Christmas movies downstairs and be extra cozy! ;)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I know it's been awhile since I've blogged on here but I wanted to do a quick post real but a longer one will be following soon. We've had a pretty full and busy day today but we are at the point now it's slowing down a little bit...and getting harder.

We woke up early and started cooking and cooked pretty much until 3:00 pm. All the food turned out good, which I'm happy about and we had a nice time just all working together! :) We all made something so there were a lot of us in the kitchen, but the time we had together was a blessing! :) Angie made rolls, mashed potatoes, and some casserole thing. Mandy made sweet potatoes and a turtle cheesecake, my Dad made two fried turkeys which were delicious but we only ate 1/2 of one! :) (I think we will be eating turkey for a LONG time) I made green bean casserole, corn casserole, this new kind of stuffing (which took forever) and then oyster dressing. So you know, I hate oysters or any sea food, but my Dad remembered my Mom making it so he wanted me to try. Those oysters looked SOOO gross! :( My Dad liked it though, so I'm happy about that. :) I think that was like everything and then my Grandparents came over and brought a pumpkin pie and lots of other goodies. :)

So we ate around 3:00 and we were all so stuff quickly. I think because we had been drinking punch and so it filled us up! After eating we cleaned up and I rocked Luke to sleep then it was time to get ready to go to meal number 2! :D Kyle, my brother, had no where to go for this Thanksgiving, so they had decided for all of us kids to just do it together. So Tara, my sister, and her boyfriend Jason, have been cooking ALL day for us! They have made TONS AND TONS of things and are actually finishing it up right now.

It's weird for me being here though, I know it shouldn't be but this is the first Thanksgiving us kids have all been together without my Mom. Last year we all did our own things. Usually on days like this (holidays) it's like I KNOW it will be hard, so I'd rather run from it. I'd rather not be with family so I don't dwell on the fact that "Wow, Mom's not here!" I know this is wrong of me and I should be thankful for the family I have left with me, and thankful that my siblings even are all together, (that doesn't happen too often) Soo...I'm trying. I escaped for just this little bit of time to come up here and blog just to get all this out.

Last year I had been thinking so much what a hard day that Thanksgiving would be and my friend said to me, "Danielle, it's not about you though. You have a new family you are with and you need to try to be a blessing to them and be thankful for what you DO have" So, I did that and last year went so well. So last night, that was my prayer again, that I could glorify God today with my actions and words and to be a blessing to my family. I didn't want to focus on my loss, but on the blessings God has given me. Guess writing this is helping me retrain my brain to do that and get out of this "slump" :D

I hope you all are having a wonderfully blessed Thanksgiving!

"Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte

Today was another great day of course. My Grandma and I drove into Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte which was lots of fun. It was a lot closer than Anna Maria Island which was nice and just as pretty! :) Actually...the water was MUCH more blue here and it was warmer today so that was good also! :)

Well today basically consisted of lots of shopping! :) We went to a place called 'Fisherman's Village' and it was like a shopping mall all on a pier! A covered pier that is! :) It was pretty neat but very expensive stores. I found a cute dress but it was 80 dollars! YIKES! :) I did get a few souvenirs for my siblings which was nice and I did get two dresses and a shirt for myself (NOT 80 dollars) :)

Guess that's pretty much all we did, shop, then shop more, and then shop even more!! :) I guess I'll let the pictures do the rest of the explaining. :)

(Forgive me, I'm kind of in a weird mood tonight...wasn't even going to post but had the time so I did. Hopefully will be back to my normal self soon...just be praying for me please!) :)
(The view from the mall)

(If you can believe it, there were apartments for rent on TOP of the mall!)
(already decorated for Christmas....sooo pretty!) :)
(The gulf of Mexico)
(These boats were in the Harbor)

(Fisherman's Villiage)
(See the nice blue water?? I wanted to jump in and start swimming!) :)

(These ones were all taken through the car window)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Anna Maria Island- Day 2

Okay, so this will be a short post but with LOTS of photos! :) Today my grandparents and I went BACK to Anna Maria (sorry thought it was Marie) Island today and this time didn't see dolphins but saw lots and lots and lots of birds! :) It was so neat though! :) We found the restaurant that we were supposed to eat at yesterday and had lunch there! :) It was neat to watch the birds get fish and the fishermen get fish as we ate! :) Hope you enjoy the pictures! :) Oh, the pics are out of order and since my computer is a tad bit slow I'm not going to take the time to put them IN order...also they aren't edited at all... :(
(A pelican...very neat bird! You'll see lots of these! ;)

(Our restaurant was out on the pier, which was really just a big dock! :) So these people sat outside and fished or did whatever...a very casual place!)
(Not sure what kind of birds these were...people kept saying seagulls, but I've never seen a seagull that looked this way)

(Tampa we weren't in Tampa, but the bay reached this far...oh and yesterday I thought it was the Atlantic Ocean but really is was the Gulf of Mexico)

(Who knows what this is!)
(I know this one!!! A DUCK!)
(This is the pelican diving in to get the fish..I know it looks weird but that's what they look like!)

(This bird freaked me out! I was getting pics and I looked up and it was RIGHT over my head! I mean, like RIGHT was sitting on the roof of the building and just wouldn't move, except it's eye...see how it has that thing that goes over it half way...creeeeepppy!)

(So you know, a lot of these pictures were taken through the restaurant window...sorry for lighting problems and how blurry some are)

(Thought this was so cute...the littler birders would just float right along with the Pelicans)

That's all!!! :)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Anna Marie Island

So much for not being able to blog! :) I have more time here then I do at home I think. :D My Grandpa was So nice to import my pictures also and show me how to use the software for resizing pics also, soooo.....I have some pics from today to post! :)

My Grandma and I left around umm..10:00 or wait, is that MO time? I don't know somewhere around there and went to Bradenton. It felt like the drive took FOREVER but it was a nice time for my grandma and I to talk! :) (as long as I could keep my eyes open) ;) So we dropped off the projecter thing at the repair shop and then got to talking with the people there. My Grandma let the guy know that we were in the market for a nice photo printer, for my photography business. The man was So nice and showed us exactly what we needed to get! I'm pretty excited because the printer we are looking at it pretty big and will print on canvas and just does some really nice prints!!!! We'll see what happens though. :) It was a lot cheaper than I imagined too! So after discussing printers for an hour or so they told us about Anna Marie Island! :) They knew I was from St. Louis and wanted to see the beach! :) So we took their advice and drove down to the island! It was BEAUTIFUL! :) SOoo pretty! :) Once again it was quite the drive because my grandma was busy looking at the surroundings so we drove like 5 miles an hour on the island...very slow! Finally we made it toward a dead end and got out to walk around on the beach! :) My grandma was quite cold but I was loving it! :) I'm so used to CA beaches and Mexico beaches and well...they just aren't as pretty! The sand here was white and the water was so blue!!! :) It was a little bit chilly just because of all the wind! Besh, you should have seen skirt plus the wind...NOT a good combination! ;) (wait a second, you SHOULDN'T have seen me) ;)

(My grandma's "bikini")
(A way way too close self-portrait)

After getting some pictures we drove around the block to the restaurant that was on the becah! :) It was tasty and so nice to be able to look out our window and see the birds and waves! :) We had a great time spending the day together there. :) I bought shirt/dress type thing as a souveiner there too, so I'll always remember Anna Marie Island! :)

On our way home was probably the most exciting though! As we were leaving the island there was a place to pull over and park and just look at the boats and stuff. Well, it looked like a nice place to get some shots so I told her I could just get out real quick and get a few pictures. I was busy getting pictures of this pier when my grandma started saying, "Look there is something jumping out of the water" Took me awhile to understand her and then I saw it...DOLPHINS!!! Like SOOO close to me also! :) They were so close to the shore, I couldn't believe it! I ran as fast as I could and got my zoom lens on so I could try to get a close shot of one of them. There were at least 6 dolphins out there playing! Well....some photographer I am, because I ended up just watching them play instead of looking through the lens and getting a shot of them jumping out of the water! :( I have a few though where you can see the little fin...hey, does it look like a shark? :D It was quite a thrill for me! :) I've seen dolphins before but they are usually kind of far away when we see them in Mexico. :)

So that was my day! :) After that we drove home and I slept some. I think tomorrow we are going to a different coastal town, and my Grandma thought I might see some manitees. That'd be neat!!! :) We'll see! :) Looks like I"ll get to blog each day though, so keep checking back! ;)
Can anyone guess what this picture is??? Leave me a comment!