Saturday, August 4, 2007

Part 1.c Nelson Vacation: Chicagoland

Finally, here are pictures from our Chicago portion of our vacation. I know, vacation was over a month ago, but I've got to catch up. Then I can tell you about all the fun stuff we've been doing recently. :-) Mostly we hung out at Grandma and Grandpa Nelson's house. The first 4 pictures are at a local park. This was the first time the boys had been on a spinning playground toys. What are those things called anyway? After spinning round and round, Blake's first attempt to walk was followed by a full body face plant. It was kind of funny, I have to admit and no he wasn't hurt other than being surprised that he couldn't just walk. Here Cedric and Blake share Grandma and Grandpa's hamock down by the river. This is a picture of 6 month old baby Zoey, my neice's daughter. Isn't she cute? We also went to the Brookfield Zoo. Here is a picture of Blake playing at the wolf exhibit. Aaaaoooooooo!
There was a baby polar bear....aaaaaahhhhh so cute!
And here all the boys enjoy the merry go round at the zoo.
This is Jim's prized photo from the butterfly exhibit. What do you think...should we enter it in a photo contest or what? It looks good enough for National Geographic to me.

We stayed with our friends Mark and Deb one night and they taught us the art of pirate poker and other crazy made up poker games. I'm not much of a poker player anyway, but the pirate game was crazy. Lets see, if you get a 6 you walk the plank and are out of the game, if you get a Jack, someone has to give you a card....or something like that. Plus, there were funny and loud sound affects like the sreeching bird to go with the game. Too much fun. I laughed more that night than I had in the whole past year, I think.

Coming up next...the final chapter of our vacation Part 1.d, fabulous Seattle.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Cedric's new glasses

Ok, soon, I'll continue with my vacation postings, but first I have breaking news. Cedric has glasses. We figured he was doomed since both Jim and I have to wear glasses. Cedric's right eye is much weaker. During his eye appt, he could read pretty good with his left eye, but couldn't read larger letters with his right. He's now can read the time (digital clock) now and I can see everything! He's also scanning the room as if he's seeing everything for the first time. The Dr. said it was good that we brought him in so early because the glasses will train his brain to use his right eye better and over time, his vision will improve. Plus during the initial eye exam, the Dr. was impressed with Cedric's ability to recognize all his letters and numbers from zero to 100, but most of all, the Dr. had never seen a 5 year old sit through the entire exam and be as responsive as Cedric was. I was beaming with pride. :-) Here is the before picture: Here is the after picture with the glasses. Doesn't he look handsome! And so grown up too.

In 27 days, Cedric will be going to Kindergarten. We are marking off the days on the calendar. Cedric is excited and I am nervous. I'll be sure to post those first day of school pictures.

Jim and Kristine mellow out at the Girdwood Reggae Fest

We interrupt the regularly scheduled (or not LOL) vacation series to bring you Jim and Kristine get some groove going at an Alaska styled reggae fest. OK...only the last two bands we heard were actually reggae bands. The next to the last band was H3, an Alaskan American Samoa reggae band and they were awesome! Jim and I had good standing position in the beer tent. We could see the stage perfectly and smell some unusual scents in the air....gee I wonder what THAT could be? Anyway, H3 warmed the place up after some lukewarm local bands made us wonder about that hefty price we paid for tickets. Of course, we knew the headline band, The Wailers, would come through and it would all be worth it. Jim was in a very special place when The Wailers started playing and no it wasn't from any herbs nor the micro brew beers. The lead singer of The Wailers sounded just like Bob Marley. Jim says frequently that the world would be a better place if everyone listened to reggae. After hearing The Wailers and seeing how happy and friendly the crowd was, I have to say, "I agree". Here is a picture of us. The Wailers are on stage, but you can't really see them. The festival was held in Girdwood which is a picturesque box canyon surrounded by spectacular mountains. Girdwood is about 30 min south of Anchorage. Alyeska ski resort hosted the show. We just breathed in the beauty of Girdwood and grooved to the sounds of mellow reggae.