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Colorado- Dave and Lori's New Home!
Posted by Tina on Tuesday, July 05, 2011 - 08:18 PM
(492 Reads)
Family News Tina writes " Dave and Lori have been residents of Colorado since winter and we decided as soon as school was out it was time to head west! I wrapped up the school year on June13 and on June 15th Gene, Dan , and I were on a flight to Denver, Colorado to spend time with Dave and Lori and explore the beautiful state of Colorado. The first evening we walked around the Breakers where Dave and Lori live - we could see why they love their new home with all the beautifully landscaped grounds, ponds, and huge lake. David who loves to garden has a plot in the Breaker's community garden- just a short distance from their apartment. We stayed the first 2 nights in Denver - drove out to Castlewood Canyon near Castle Rock, Colorado (about 45 minutes outside of Denver) to sight see on our first day. Enjoyed lunch at the Stone Church Restaurant- scrumptious entrees at what was once a church! The next morning Dave and Lori joined us on a 3 day visit to Estes Park, Colorado. This mountain town is a gateway to the Rocky Mountains National Park and is ELK CAPITAL in my book! We stayed at the Evergreen Cabins on the Fall River. It was a great choice- the river was directly behind our cabin, elk all around the area, beautiful mountains in all directions, 3 miles from downtown Estes Park and 2 miles from the Rocky Mountain National Park entrance. Need I say more... Well, yes I finally saw my Bullwinkle. A huge,bull moose at Beaver's Pond in the RMNP just resting 20 feet from where I stood. I never got to see him stand but no complaints from me. In the nearby meadow a female moose with a very young baby moose was a sight to behold! While heading back to Estes Park we drove in falling snow that afternoon in the Alpine area. On this trip we experienced mid 30's in the Rockies and later in Denver it did reach 90 degrees one day.
Our next locale to visit was the Manitou Springs and Colorado Springs area of Colorado. We visited the Garden of the Gods- beautiful red rock formations, drove up to the summit of Pikes Peak (14,110 ft.), visited Florissant Fossil Monument, Cripple Creek( old gold mining town now a town of 12 casinos), and the impressive Air Force Academy.
We headed back to Denver and spent the last 3 nights further enjoying Dave, Lori, and their little dog Jack's company. About 35 miles from their place is Clear Creek and so Dave and Dan enjoyed white water rafting while my friend Nancy Avalon (who lives in the Denver area) joined Gene and I for some fun in Idaho Springs while the guys rafted. They had a spectacular time and no spills in the water for them! The last day in Denver we ate dinner and walked around the Denver Downtown Mall. I just loved the horse drawn carriages!!
Before we knew it- it was time to head back home! Our visit to Colorado was filled with spectacular scenery, sightings of so many critters- elk, moose,prairie dogs, chipmunks, and too many birds to count! Enjoyed delicious dining and most of all the simple pleasure of being with family. Already looking forward to our next visit.....

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Paul and Dan Graduate!!
Posted by Tina on Saturday, May 14, 2011 - 05:27 PM
(526 Reads)
Family News Tina writes " On April 16 we drove up to Gainesville to attend Paul's MBA graduation. We rose early the next morning for the 9:00 am graduation and 50 degree weather was a reminder how different Gainsville's weather is compared to South Florida! Alexa and Paul Andrew attended their Daddy's graduation which was quite entertaining with lots of laughter! The UF professors chosen by the graduates as outstanding instructors shared several humorous stories about the graduates that were indeed very funny... After the ceremony we headed outdoors and someone tapped on my shoulder. I turned around and there is my brother Tom!! He arrived just in time to congratulate Paul and also Dan whose graduation was 3 weeks later.
Dan's graduation on May 7th was also at 9am just like Paul's. Dave flew in on May 6th - this was his first time back to Florida since moving to Denver in January. The graduation ceremony began with bagpipe players leading the graduates. I am a lover of Celtic music and bagpipes- this was a wonderful ceremonial entrance! The UCF Arena floor was completely filled with graduates but we were able with the photographic skills of Paul and Dad to get video and pictures of Dan during graduation.
To celebrate the achievements of both my oldest and youngest son we spent the rest of the weekend at Blizzard Beach and Sea World. We had a wonderful time at Blizzard Beach. Not sure who had more fun- the "big kids" or the grand kids !!!"

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Alexa is Five!!
Posted by Tina on Saturday, May 14, 2011 - 04:57 PM
(461 Reads)
Family News Tina writes " Alexa celebrated her 5th Birthday at The Little Diva's - a fun party place - with her little friends on Sunday, May 1st! All the little girls were treated to fingernail and toenail polishing and hair styling. Decked out in spa robes and the most adorable flip flops decorated by Yoyi the little girls were a sight to behold!It was a very Happy Birthday for Alexa- not at all a diva- just a beautiful princess..."

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Cruising through Spring Break 2011
Posted by Tina on Saturday, May 14, 2011 - 04:34 PM
(475 Reads)
Cruise Travel Tina writes " Easter was April 24 - the latest I ever remember, ever! Needless to say,teachers and students were ready for spring break... We arrived in Miami late afternoon Saturday- Paul was still not feeling 100% - he caught whatever Alexa had the week before. On Monday we sailed on the NCL Sky. This was our second cruise on the Sky so we made our way around the ship easily. We ate seafood every night and enjoyed the company of Laura and Carmon Huckabee from northern Virginia.They also vacation near the Outer Banks of North Carolina and shared many of their experiences as we did over our evening meals.
Weather was great during the entire cruise but rough seas in Freeport cancelled our snorkeling trip.We had snorkeled in Freeport in the 1980's and I was hoping to get a chance to check out the coral 20 years later... We did connect with a fellow coworker of mine and her husband at Paradise Island. We met at the Atlantis Resort and shared cruising experiences on their ship Majesty of the Seas with ours.
As always, the azure blue seas of the Caribbean were a feast for the eyes...."

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Earth Day at Estero High
Posted by Tina on Sunday, April 03, 2011 - 02:26 PM
(804 Reads)
Events Stuff Tina writes " Even though the official Earth Day is still weeks away -Gene and I joined dozens of Estero High students to beautify our school's campus yesterday. Our baseball team helped out at the front pond at the school which is" my baby". In the last 7-8 years we have watched our 40 cypress trees thrive and if it wasn't for a nasty vine that likes to wind up the cypress tree trunks we would have it easy. There is good news- as the cypress trees increase in height like the one surviving cypress tree that was planted when Estero High was built in 1987- the vine has little success taking hold.
I am starting to need a mountain fix - just looked at a picture Dave took at the Arapahoe National Forest in Colorado. When Dave sends pics of those beautiful Rocky Mountains my mind starts to take me to those moments in my travels when I look out from a mountainside and can see forever into the distance.... Such beauty our God has given to his children..."

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