The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Posts tagged ‘My Great Nephew Kaleb’

Our Christmas

Our Christmas began on Wednesday, December 23.  We celebrated Christmas with my stepdaughter and two granddaughters on that day.  Stacey and the girls arrived at 2:00 pm. We ate Christmas dinner: turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, carrots, green bean casserole, dinner rolls, cranberry sauce and for dessert pumpkin pie, chocolate pudding and chocolate chip cookies.  After dinner, and after the kitchen had been cleaned up, we exchanged Christmas gifts.  Our granddaughters left around 4:15 pm, when their paternal grandmother picked up the girls to take them to church.  Stacey left about an hour later.

It was just Bob and me for Christmas Day.   Bob and I decided not to exchange gifts this year, opting to make our Eureka Springs vacation in September our Christmas present to each other.  We didn’t have a white Christmas.  It wasn’t even a chilly Christmas, as the temperature rose into the 50s.  In the afternoon Bob and I went for a long walk at the Audubon Center and Sanctuary in Jamestown, NY.  We walked all three trails. The orange trail is 1 mile in length; the yellow trail is 2 miles in length; and the blue trail is .5 miles in length. We didn’t follow each trail individually, so we didn’t walk the entire 3 ½ miles in trail. It would be reasonable, though, to say we walked more than 2 miles, probably close to 3 miles!

20151225_175810329_iOSBob and I on one of the trails at the Audubon Center and Sanctuary
If you would like to see more pictures from our walk, you may do so by clicking here.

We ate Christmas dinner at Variety Buffet, a local Chinese restaurant that we have eaten at the past couple Christmases.
Bob and I celebrated Christmas with my brother and family at his house the day after Christmas.  We left Warren at 10:00 am and arrived in Cadogan around 12:30 pm. Our nephew, Jared, and his wife Sara and their daughter Kyla had arrived earlier in the day.  I had plenty of Kyla time (and time with Sara and Jared) before the arrival of Judy’s brother, Donald, and his wife Gina and Judy’s mother, Lois, and our nephew, Michael, and his wife Kailey and their children Kaleb and Anna.

We ate dinner at 3:00 pm.

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Our Christmas dinner included ham, turkey, sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes with gravy, Amish noodles, stuffing, green beans and cranberry sauce. For dessert we had a choice of pumpkin pie, pumpkin roll, and brownies. Dinner was served buffet style, with us taking our filled plates into the living room and den to eat. Dinner was delicious.

Gift opening commenced at 4:00 pm.

The last activity before we departed for home was a sock exchange, in which Judy, Gina, Lois, Sara, Kailey and I participated. Each of us filled a pair of fuzzy socks with stocking stuffers, the contents of which were not to exceed $20.00. We sat in a circle holding the socks that we brought. Jared read a Christmas story that I found on the Internet. Every time the word RIGHT was read, everyone passed her gift to the right. Every time the word LEFT was read, gifts were passed to the left. Each person kept the gift held at the end of the story. I give kudos to my sister-in-law, Judy, for suggesting the sock exchange.  We had the best time passing around our socks!

Bob and I left for home around 6:15 pm and returned home around 9:00 pm. It was an enjoyable day. Too bad that our niece, Emily, and her husband Dan and their daughter Elise couldn’t be there with us.  Emily, Dan and Elise live about a 1.000 miles away–a bit too far for a day’s drive!

I put together the following collage of some of the photographs that I took, while at my brother’s house.

Family_Christmas_portrait-16x20-vertical-02
 (top row) l-r: Lois and her great granddaughter; Michael and his family
(middle row) l-r: My brother and sister-in-law with their grandchildren; Donald and Gina
(bottom row) l-r: Emily and her family; Jared and his family

There is one picture included in the collage that I didn’t take. I downloaded one of Emily’s Facebook pictures. Dan, Emily and Elise were not with us in person. They were, though, with us in spirit!

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It is now the last day of the year 2015.   Happy New Year to each and every one of you.  Here are my wishes for you in the new year:

“Great beginning for January…
Love for February…
Peace for March…
No worries for April…
Fun for May…
Joy for June and July…
Achievements for August…
Harmony for September…
Good fortune for October and November…
Happiness for December…”

~Author Unknown

Surprise!

Bob and I went for a motorcycle ride on Saturday, May 24. We had only one destination in mind, when we left home – Lutzs Leather, located a couple hours’ ride south.

We made two stops en route Lutzs Leather. Our first stop was at Fountain Park in Franklin PA to stretch our legs.

P5245194 4x6The A.G. Egbert Memorial Fountain is the centerpiece of Fountain Park.  The fountain was constructed in 1896 in memory of Albert G. Egbert, a local physician and one-time member of Congress.

In addition to admiring the fountain, I liked the beauty of this white-blossoming tree.

P5245196

Our second stop was in Slippery Rock, at Sheetz, to fuel up. Our stop at Lutzs Leather was not long. Bob tried on a couple leather coats and found one he liked. Bob now owns a new leather coat. This coat “breathes”, a feature he is most happy about.

We decided to go from Lutzs Leather to The Chief Bar and Restaurant in Kittanning PA (another hour’s drive) to surprise six of my high school classmates who were meeting there to plan our 40th high school reunion.

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Everyone was pleasantly surprised!
With the exception of one classmate, I hadn’t seen the others since high school graduation.

Bob and I not only surprised my high school classmates with a visit, we surprised my brother and his family with a visit. Before leaving The Chief Restaurant, I telephoned Judy to see if she and Jim were home and available to get together. We made plans to meet in a couple hours. With those plans in place, we made arrangement for a night’s stay at the Quality Inn. When we left home, we didn’t know whether or not our day’s journey would include an overnight stay. We packed a change of clothes just in case. Our visit with Jim and Judy lasted a couple of hours. In addition to visiting with Jim and Judy we were able to visit with our niece, Emily, and her daughter Elise, as well as with our great nephew Kaleb and great niece Anna. The eight of us ate a picnic dinner of hamburgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, baked beans and fruit salad.

IMG_2728Anna and Elise

IMG_2732Kaleb got to sit on our new motorcycle.
By the way, Bob is wearing the new leather coat that he purchased at Lutzs Leather.

It was a good day. It was great to see everyone!

Happy Birthday Kaleb!

Our great nephew, Kaleb, is 7 years old today.  I have two nephews and one niece.  Kaleb is the son of my oldest nephew, Michael, and his wife Kailey.  I searched my archives for photographs of Kaleb at each age.  Each photograph brought forth smiles and memories.  I hope that you enjoy the photographs as much as I do.

Kaleb, October 2005Kaleb weighed 7 pounds 4 ounces at birth; his length was 20 inches long.
At the time Kaleb was the youngest baby I had every held.
He was only 23 hours old, when I held him for the first time.

PA282419Happy birthday to me! (1 year old)

FamilyVisit200710_0362 years old

PB017693Kaleb (3 years old) and Uncle Jared

PC207965Kaleb became a big brother to his baby sister, Anna, a couple months before his third birthday.
This is the first photograph I took of the two of them together.

FE370_P8290115This photograph was taken a couple months before Kaleb’s 4th birthday.

DC259060 4x6Kaleb (5 years old) and Uncle Jared

EA296335+EA296337 4x6Kaleb (6 years old) and his family

Here is the latest photograph of Kaleb.  This photograph was taken by Kaleb’s mom a couple days ago.

Kaleb Halloween 2012Kaleb, almost 7 years old (October 2012)
Thank you for the photograph, Kailey!

Happy birthday Kaleb!  Aunt Linda and Uncle Bob love you!

Family Visit and an Elk Sighting

On Saturday (March 10) Bob, Raphael and I enjoyed lunch and conversation at Hoss’s Steakhouse in St. Marys, Pennsylvania with my brother, his wife and their 6-year-old grandson. Raphael had seen Jim and Judy in July 2008, when he last visited. It was the first time Raphael met Kaleb. Can you believe it? I forgot to take a picture of Raphael with Jim, Judy and Kaleb!

After lunch Bob, Raphael and I went to Benezette. Jim, Judy and Kaleb returned to camp, where they were spending the weekend. In Benezette we stopped at the Visitor Center.

Raphael in front of the Elk Country Visitor Center

We didn’t see any elk at visitor center. We drove up Winslow Hill and saw a large number of elk grazing on hill, too far away for a great-looking picture. We did see four elk on private property along Route 555. I photographed the closer of the four elk.

Elk

Meeting Elise for First Time

Our great niece, Elise, was born the day after Christmas. Since then, we have made two attempts to visit my family and meet baby Elise. Both attempts were thwarted by inclement winter weather. Yesterday, we finally met baby Elise!

Our morning began at 8:00 AM with breakfast at the Train Station, a restaurant located in our hometown.

The Train Station

My husband has lived most of his life in our hometown. The Train Station has been serving food for as long as he can remember. The food quality is excellent; prices are affordable; and the service is great. Today Bob’s daughter, Stacey, and our son-in-law, Mike, joined us for breakfast. The four of us enjoyed a hearty breakfast and bountiful conversation. An hour later Bob, Stacey and I began the 2 1/2-hour drive to my brother’s house. Mike didn’t accompany us, as he had plans for the day.

We had a wonderful visit with my brother and his family. I cuddled Elise and interacted with my other great niece, Anna, and her brother Kaleb. The conversation among the adults was lively and enlightening. It is always good to catch up on family news. We keep in touch on Facebook, telephone calls and email. However, I feel the best way to catch up on family news is in person.

This is our niece, Emily, and her 2-month old daughter Elise.

Kaleb, Anna and Elise
our great nephew and great nieces

Elise with her mother and grandparents

Not everyone in the family was able to come yesterday. We missed those of you who had other plans. We hope to see you next time!

Christmas 2010

Bob and I had a quiet, restful Christmas Eve, just the two of us. We ate an early dinner at Pizza Hut. Pizza Hut was a good choice, as it was offering its all-you-can eat buffet all day Christmas Eve. We didn’t know this was the case when we decided to eat there. In the evening we watched a couple movies, and around 11:00 PM we opened our Christmas gifts. This was the first year that we opened our Christmas gifts on Christmas Eve. We were able to see what we got each other for Christmas and dream about our gifts all night long 🙂 Bob is happy with the Keurig Coffee Maker, a tool set, and a Steelers shirt and sleep pants that I gave him for Christmas. I’m happy with the gifts that Bob gave me too — a Kindle! and a gift card to purchase e-books!

Bob and I celebrated Christmas with my brother and his family at their home on Christmas Day. We celebrated Christmas with my stepdaughter, Stacey, and her fiance Mike at our house the day after Christmas. Our Christmas weekend was wonderful, and I hope the same of yours.
Christmas 2010
Please click on image to enlarge

Weekend in Pittsburgh – Visit to Zoo, Day 2

This past Saturday, March 27, Bob and I visited the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium with my brother, Jim, and some members of his family. Bob and I arrived at the zoo around 9:50 AM. Jim, Judy, Kaleb and Anna arrived about an hour later. Jim and Judy’s son, Jared, joined us about 30 minutes later.

Jim and Judy with their grandchildren, Kaleb and Anna at entrance to zoo

I am so happy that Jim and Judy brought Kaleb and Anna to the zoo. It was great spending time with them and seeing the zoo through their eyes. By the way, did you know every animal in the zoo is called “doggie”? That’s how Anna referred to each animal that we saw. Both Kaleb and Anna behaved well at the zoo. There were two things about the zoo, however, that Anna did not like — the escalator and a glass cleaner inside the aquarium.

You have to ride an elevator or go up this big escalator to get to the main zoo area.

 

Judy, Jim, Kaleb and Anna on escalator
Anna did not like riding the escalator.  She cried the whole way up to the zoo.

Large floor to ceiling aquarium

Inside one of the large floor to ceiling aquariums was this person who was cleaning the glass. This person frightened Anna when he waved at her. Anna cried and wouldn’t stop until we left the aquarium. I was carrying Anna as we left the aquarium. She kept looking behind her as we walked. I wonder if Anna was making sure that scuba-clad person wasn’t following her?

We had a great time at the zoo and hope to visit again someday.

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