Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel Fishing

Last weekend, we met Andy's brother, John, on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel for lunch and fishing off the pier. The Bridge Tunnel is trulya remarkable structure. The first phase was completed in 1964, and an additional phase was completed in 1999, which opened the Bridge Tunnel to four lane traffic. Including the causeways, the span is 23 miles. It includes two tunnels and allows travelers to go from Virginia Beach, Virginia to the Eastern Shore of Virginia, including points north, like Maryland and Delaware. The total cost of building this was 450 million dollars which is entirely paid for by toll money costing each car $12.00 to cross.
We ate lunch in the restaurant that is located on the southern-most island of the Bridge Tunnel. The food is good and the restaurant, of course, has a spectacular view. Andrea didn't come, but John brought the kids, which is great for Jake. Afte we ate, the kids browsed the gift shop before we set out to the pier for fishing.

There are a lot of lookouts for you to see incoming ships and such.
Allison and I just hung out and played while the boys fished.

The boys really had fun. And, I'm sure Andy enjoyed seeing his brother.

The view from the pier is gorgeous!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Blog Award

My friend, Angie, gave me this blog award! How sweet is that! I've never won a blog award before. Woo Hoo! Thanks Angie. BTW, check out Angie's blog here. She is a friend who also lives in North Carolina and has some very cool pictures, LOs, and cards on her blog. She is also on the design team for Lilac City Designs.

Here are the rules:

1. The winner can put the logo on her blog.

2. Link the person you received your award from.

3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.

4. Put links of those blogs on yours.

5. Leave a message on the blogs of the girls you've nominated.

And here are my picks:

Chrispea: check out her blog here. Chris is my scrappal. She is funny and kind and makes the best LOs. She is also a finalist for the guest designer spot at AMR. Wish her luck. She is so talented!

Elizabeth Kartchner: check out her blog here. This gal was the scrapbooker of the year over at CK. She is amazingly talented and has two of the cutest little girls. I enjoy reading her blog for inspiration. Love her music, too.

Nicole: Check out her blog here. Nicole is so funny! I love reading her blog. She always makes me laugh. Right now she is trying belly dancing. How fun is that! Not only does she crack me up, but she also makes really nice LOs and cards. She just had 5 published! Wow!

Kelli: check out her blog here. Kelli is one talented lady. She designs stamps and they are cute, too! She is the designer for Lilac City Designs. How cool! She also makes the best cards. Super talented.

Jessica: check out her blog here. This is another talented gal where I go for inspiration. Love reading her blog. Oh, and while you are visiting her blog, check out those gorgeous blue eyes on her baby! So sweet!

Kimmie and Corey: check out their challenge blog here. They have great challenges. Love it because it makes us use what we have and also use our scraps. I need the kick in the pants sometimes. Awesome!

Amber: check out her blog here. So sweet, this gal! She alters things. Ahe also likes to make cards and LOs. I love her work and enjoy reading her blog for inspiration.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Wow, Oh wow!

Holy Cow! Two great things just happened to me, scrapbooking things, that is.

Over at the blog, Use Your Stash, I was picked to be their Guest Designer for December! Woo Hoo! Here is the link to that post : Announcement. This is a fun challenge blog. Kimmie and Corey challenge us to use our stash, which is great because so many of us scrappers like to buy supplies and don't use a lot of them. Anyway, being picked was such a thrill! Can't wait until I find out more of what is expected of me.

The second awesome scrapbooking honor is that I was one of the finalists over at All Moments Remembered to be their Guest Designer. Again, woo hoo! These ladies at AMR are just so amazingly talented. To be included as a finalist is such an honor. Here are the other finalist: Milli, Chrispea, drea, PattiM, Jessicamae, Jenn_A_scraps, Nicole, and Janobean. I've linked their blogs so you can see their amazing talent (sorry Jenn, I can't find a link for your blog). I'll keep you all posted when I learn more. So, good luck to everyone who is a finalist! And, if you do check out their blogs, leave a little love for them!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Corolla Lighthouse

While Betsey was visiting, we took her to see the Corolla Lighthouse. It is gorgeous and the climb isn't so bad. There are apparently 214 steps inside the lighthouse with a number of landings on the way up to rest. If you've never been, you should visit this while here. Oh, and they do give group tours and hold weddings on the premises. That could be so pretty.

The spiral staircase is pretty. Andy noticed how as you go up, the stairway gets pretty narrow.

The inside has several landings on which to rest. Some have windows to look out. As you get higher, the view from the windows is pretty nice.

Betsey was having a great time. Ok, all of us were.

As you can see here, the view from the top is spectacular.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Some New LOs Fom AMR's Monthly Online Crop

Saturday was the July online crop at All Moments Remembered. They had lots of great challenges, which was cool because many of them were using techniques I've never used before. Sadly I felt sick most of the weekend, but I managed to create 3 new LOs, 2 of which were for the challenges. If you are not a member of this board, check it out. These ladies are the most positive, and support one another nicely. Never an unkind word. They are a lot of fun. Oh, and while there, check out the store. Stcaey has the best customer service anywhere.

This LO was the non-challenge LO, "Fun at the Beach". Andy and Jake were visiting his brother and they dug these huge holes which the kids had to play in. The pictures are so silly, so I had to scrap them. Of course, my first reaction was of a typical mom, "OMG, what were you thinking? Lots of kids die each year in holes like this!"

This LO, "Outdoor Adventure", was for a challenge at the crop. The challenge was to glitter up some chipboard and use it on a card. I changed it a bit and used it on a tag on a LO. The photo was from Skyline Drive in Virginia. Gorgeous background! Noticing how horrible the glare is on that photo of the LO, sorry. Here is that photo I used. If you've never been to skyline drive, you should go. We camp every year at the Yogi Bear campsite near Luray Caverns. Check it out at Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park.

This last LO I used pictures of me that Jake took one day at the store. I look really orange because Jake used Andy's iPhone and we have orange walls and bad lighting int he office. The challenge was to find a non-scrapping magazine ad and use the ad as inspiration for your LO.

Here is the ad.

And, here is my take, "@ Play"Since the glare on my photo is so bad (sorry), here is the last picture, it is the goofy one of me.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Aquarium Fun

Betsey has since gone home. Our house seems so empty. Andy even mentioned that it is quiet and something is missing. She was a such a pleasure to have visit.
While she was here, we took her to see the North Carolina Aquarium in Roanoke Island. We have a membership, so we didn't have to pay, but I believe the cost is pretty inexpensive. Also, with our membership (that only cost $50/year for the family), we get a discount in the gift shop. The best part is that they have a reciprocal agreement with something like 200 other aquariums and zoos across the nation. That means that if you are visiting, check your membership to see if you can use it to visit the aquarium here.
Personally, I love the aquarium here. It is large enough to offer a good variety of fish, sharks, and other animals, but small enough for young children to really enjoy. They also have an outdoor area where the kids can dig for dinosaur bones (Jake loves this!) and other fun stuff.
The exhibits are great. I love Jake's expression in this photo of him looking at the octopus.

Jake saw this alligator and had to pose for this picture. He was so funny. Look at that face, LOL.

He used to hate touching the stingrays. His class went to the aquarium this year and somehow he came out loving the touch area. I guess peer pressure can be OK at times. ;)

Will the frog turn into a prince for Betsey? How many frogs will she have to kiss before one turns into a prince? Of course Jake would rather play with this frog. Kissing a frog? Gross!

Jake's favorite exhibit is the shark tank. He would stare for hours if I let him. Too bad I didn't get a good picture of a shark. They have about 5 huge sharks last time I counted.
In another area, they have a few animals including these turtles. Can you tell Jake took this picture? Do you see his reflection?

Monday, July 7, 2008

What color is your canvas?

While Betsey was visiting, we did a lot of touring. But, we also did some fun stuff at the house. One day, Jake, Betsey, and I painted some canvases and added a few fun embellishments. Andy, well, let's just say he isn't so much into crafting. He played on his iPhone or went in the hottub or something while we did this. I love how they turned out.
This first picture is when we out to eat lunch one day. Betsey and I sat together and Jake went unser the table to sit next to Betsey.
for his canvas, Jake used a very cool picture from one summer years ago when he was just turning 4 yo. It is one of my favorite pictures of him. Betsey used a very cool picture from this year when her class went to Seaworld. She is kissing Dexter the Dolphin. So cute!I used a gorgeous picture of Jake when he was 3 and visiting Grandma and Grandad one summer.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Elizabethan Gardens

We took Betsey to tour the Elizabethan Gardens. The gardens are filled with beautiful flowers, statues, and fountains. Located on Roanoke Island, the gardens also host many special events and programs, like plays, shows, holiday events, and various classes. The cost is $8.00 for adults, $5.00 for children ages 6-17, and free for children 5 and under. There are also group rates and tours available. It is pretty reasonable considering the gardens are so rich in history.

Jake was given a sheet where he had to search for various animals and bugs. Some of the animals were statues located throughout the grounds. He was funny because while he did look at the flowers and statues and such, he was really searching for these bugs and other insects on the sheet. Here is a statue of Virginia Dare. Born on August 18, 1587, she was the first child born in the new world.
Here is another statue in the gardens: Queen Elizabeth I. She is made of bronze and is the largest bronze statue of Queen Elizabeth I in the world.
The grounds are not too large, but we stopped a few times to rest.
Here is a photo of a water spot hidden in the Woodland & Wildlife/Children's Garden among amny cute statues for children, like The Bashful Girl and some gnomes.
Here are some photos of some of the gorgeous flowers you will see.
There are several fountains at the Elizabeth Gardens. All are gorgeous. Here is one of them.