Wednesday, September 29, 2010

road trip!

Ladies and gentlemen, it's time to make an announcement. I am packing up the blog and taking it on location! That's right, I am getting ready to embark on an adventure and the blog is coming with.

Tomorrow morning, bright and early, I am leaving on a jet plane headed to sunny San Jose, CA to meet up with my Mom, my sister, Grandma, and my Aunt for the weekend. We're going to spend some wonderful quality time with them. But it doesn't stop there. Instead of coming back home, we're saying goodbye to Grandma and my Aunt, then my sister, Melissa, is taking me and Mom up to La Conner, WA where we are going to see the sights, relax, and probably drink some wine. But wait! There's more! The real reason we're going on this adventure is to help my sister pack up some stuff and move back to Milwaukee where she and her husband are settling once he's out of the Navy. So, we're going to drive from La Conner to Milwaukee, a mere 2,053 miles. The adventure ends with a few more days in Milwaukee to see friends and then I'm headed back to Pensacola.

All together, I'll be on location for about three weeks. Don't worry about R, though. He'll have have enough SportsCenter and long bike rides to keep him busy. And let's just be honest, you and I both know after spending everyday with a certain talkative girl, he's probably ready for a quiet house and the remote all to himself.

I'll be blogging all about my adventures along the way so stay tuned. As for my first achievement, in order to travel quickly and cheaply, I managed to fit three weeks worth of clothes, shoes, and beauty products into just a carry on! This either means I'm the world's greatest packer or I'm going to be a hot mess for three weeks.

See you in San Jose!

Monday, September 20, 2010

go pack!

When the temperature hovers in the low 90's and the palm trees are still bright green, it's hard to feel like it's fall. No leaves changing colors, no crisp cool air, no sweatshirts for chilly nights. We feel far from home when the climate is so different from what we're used to. However, there is one reminder of the changing seasons though... football!

Unfortunately, we don't get all the Packer games on TV because I guess they care more about the Buccaneers, Dolphins, and of course, college football down here, (which, if you didn't know is the second largest religion down here after Southern Baptist). But since Aaron Rodgers is taking the Packers to the Super Bowl this year, we want to make sure we catch as many games as possible. That means heading out to a sports bar with some friends, like we did to watch the Pack beat the Bills.

It may not feel like fall down in here in the tropics, but watching those Lambeau Leaps and hearing that, "Go, Pack, Go!" yesterday made us feel much closer to home.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

under the sea.

There are a couple awesome things about living in a place where people come for vacation. It's warm in the winter, the sun is almost always shining, and you get to take advantage of some of the most beautiful beaches around. And yesterday, R and I did just that. He has a friend who dives and borrowed us some of his gear and we headed down to the beach to go snorkeling! He even let us borrow his underwater camera, so we could share our adventure with you all!

We went to Fort Pickens, which is at the end of this beautiful stretch of beach. One side faces the bay and the other side faces the Gulf and at the end there's a cool Fort that protected the bay that dates back before the Civil War.

This was the first spot we went to. The waves were a little strong so I stayed out while R got some pictures. The bay side of the beach faces NAS Pensacola on the other side of the bay, and every time a plane took off from the base, R would pop out of the water and watch it. I guess airplanes trump fish.

Here's some of the shots R got. It's cool because they just swim right up to you, they're aren't scared at all. I think I was more scared of them.

Ugh, these jerks. Here's the story with these jellyfish; we actually went snorkeling last week, but only stayed in the water for about 20 minutes because there were a bunch of little jellies around. There are lots of types of jellyfish, but being from Wisconsin, we just get a little freaked out by all of them. There's little ones that are about the size of a key that are colorless and have no tentacles, (they look like snot balls floating in the water) and they don't sting. Then, we saw some slightly bigger ones, the bell part was about the size of a fist and they had longer tentacles....they do sting. They float all around and you can't really see them coming, so we just decided to call it quits for the day. When we went yesterday, we didn't see any of the little ones, but of course, right when we found the perfect spot with tons of fish and crabs, there were a couple of these big ones. They are called moon jellies and they're as big as a Frisbee. After doing some research it turns out their stings aren't too bad, but we weren't taking any chances. R got this picture and we just stayed above water.

Finally we found a good spot with no waves and no jellies. There were a bunch of little fish and hermit crabs and if you stayed still they came right up to your face. The camera battery was running out, but we managed to get a good shot of the two of us. It was a really cool adventure and definitely something we'll do again soon.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

twins!

Don't you just love a cliffhanger ending? I know I do! It's time to introduce you to the newest members of our family... Our new washer and dryer!

This may not be so exciting to everyone else, (and it just may be a disappointment to some of you who thought we were talking about a puppy) but to us it's Christmas in September. We've been in Pensacola since May and in that time laundry, a task that I don't usually mind at all, has become the bane of my existence. In order to really appreciate your washer and dryer, take your next load of laundry to your nearest laundromat.

It doesn't matter where you live or how nice your neighborhood is, laundromats are nasty. They're poorly lit and the magazines are all three years out of date. The floors are sticky from spilled detergent and little barefoot, Kool Aid mouthed kids run around pushing each other in the carts, their mom's yelling, "Hush 'for I smack you!" Meanwhile, you're trying to decide which dryer to use, the one that's closest to the air conditioner that's only pumping air into a six foot radius or the one that the scruffy college guy just pulled his crab sheets out of. Decide quick, because the pushy mom is pulling your intimates out of the washer she's been waiting for. When your clothes are done drying, you just shove everything into the hamper and book it out of there, because wrinkly clothes are better than folding them there, where the guy who looks like someone from an Amber Alert has been watching your underwear tumble around and around in the dryer for the last 4o minutes.

So when we found out another couple was getting rid of their washer and dryer and only wanted a couple hundred for the pair, we were more than ready to say goodbye to the laundromat and say hello to our new babies!

I've done three loads already and I couldn't be happier.

Monday, September 6, 2010

beer, guns, and rock n' roll.

This weekend we drove to Mississippi to spend the last weekend of summer with Brad, Valerie, and Noah. We had such a relaxing and fun time. On Saturday morning, after Noah woke us up by snuggling us and then immediately asking if we wanted to play with his Batman toys, R and I headed to Kiln, MS for a brewery tour. Kiln is the home of the Lazy Magnolia Brewery, the only brewery in the whole state, which is kind of cool. They make only a few beers, including a Southern Pecan Nut Brown Ale, which R has tried and says is pretty impressive. Unfortunately, they didn't offer samples. It was a really laid back, cool brewery and the brewmaster, Leslie, is one of only a few female brewmasters in the country. (Is she a brewmistress?)

Kiln is also the hometown of Brett Favre. Some of you may remember he played for the Packers a while back? They are pretty proud of their boy in Kiln. His high school named the football field after him and they even have a huge life size bronze statue in his honor.

It should be noted that he is wearing his Green Bay uniform in his bronze replica and all over this mural, people have written things like, "Once a Packer, Always a Packer!" He'll always go down in history as a Packer. Personally, I choose to remember him by his stellar acting in Wrangler ads, but that's just me...

Later that evening, we went with Brad and Val to a cookout with some of their friends. They had a huge backyard which the boys took advantage of and had some much needed man-time.

Brad and R showed Noah how to shoot a .22 at a target. He was being so careful and concentrated as Brad showed him how to lift the safety, aim, and pull the trigger. It was so sweet to see them sitting together in this field, the older men showing the little man some tricks of the trade. All of the other couples had kids and we had such a good time talking and laughing around the bonfire, listening to their parenting stories and adventures.

The rest of the weekend we spent cooking out and sleeping in. After they put Noah to bed on Sunday night, us adults got wild and busted out the Rock Band. I must say, Brad, Val, R, and I make a pretty mean little band. We even unlocked a new level and I got to belt it out on vocals to Heart's "Barracuda". (A song that really makes me appreciate the fact that I don't have to sing for my dinner, otherwise I'd be very hungry.) After Valerie and I had worked our fingers to the bone on guitar and sang ourselves hoarse on vocals, R and Brad stayed up another couple hours to rock out some more. Hey, when you're in the zone, you're in the zone...

It was such a laid back and relaxing time, we didn't want to leave. But, we had to get back home so that we could be here for the delivery of the newest addition to our family! Intrigued? Ah you'll just have to stay tuned for more tomorrow!