Tuesday, May 30, 2006


The weekend started out kind of sad, when we brought Isis back to her foster dad.  She was a sweet doggy and great around children in the house, but she just thought everyone outside our house was the enemy.  We miss her, but hope that she will soon find a new home.

Saturday we had a barbecue over at our house.  Later that night I had planned on setting up a "drive in movie" outside, an elaborate contraption created by daisy chaining an overhead projector, a laptop computer, a lcd projector panel, and a small boombox.  While setting it up, the laptop decided to stop working.  I got a "blue screen of death", something that has never happened before.  I actually started to get very stressed out.  The children were running around in a frenzy.  "Where is the movie?"  they kept asking.  I was feverishly trying to download a driver and install it on this laptop, in the dark, on a picnic table, in my backyard, while being heckled by a crowd of 11 children with an everage age of 4.  Finally, I dragged an ancient laptop out of the basement, and got that to work.  But it was very cool, and so, I guess, worth it.

Sunday we went over to our neighbors for a pool party, and my aqua-children got in a few hours of serious pool time.  Then after more time in the sun, we retired, and the children got some more good sleep time in.

Monday we saw "Over the Hedge" with some friends, and later I went bowling.  It was good weekend, sort of busy, but all things that stayed close to home, and that was very nice.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Gettysburg Bluegrass - Tony's Birthday party

This past weekend we accomplished a very nice relaxing weekend.  On Saturday, Anna went to her elementary school for a Boardwalk party.  
I hung out with the kids at home, mowed the grass, chilled out.  It was very relaxing.

Sunday all the family came up for cousin Tony's first birthday party.  Sam and PJ went up with Mom and they all had a great time.  Anna and Dad, however, had a different agenda.  Getting up early, they hit the road at 8AM, and bet feet up to Granite Hill Campground in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania for the 52nd annual Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival.  GBF is a more traditional festival, with lots of Gospel and old-timey bluegrass, and we stayed the whole day.  The weather was a little cold, and very windy, but it didn't rain.

We got to see Dry Branch Fire Squad, and the Lewis Brothers, and Shiloh, and the Seldom Scene finished off the day by Four PM, which allowed us to make it home in time for dinner.  Very enjoyable.   I look forward to when we take the whole family to these things, and stay for three four days and not just one. 

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Nina goes home, Pete, PJ and Sam get lost May 14, 2006

We dropped Nina off at BWI on Saturday morning after a wonderful week with us. Thanks again to my mom for helping on the drive down and for spending the week with us. Thanks Nina!

Later, I met up with some freinds and went hiking for an hour or so at Turkey Run. Then we got lost. Three hours later, lost in the forests that more or less Surround CIA headquarters in Langley, we were still slugging it along.

The kids were real troopers, especially Sam, who didn't hardly complain even though his leather sandals were soaking wet and must have been hurting his feet. PJ kept saying "This way, that way! Where are we going! I want to go back to the car!". Made it home eventually, and went home for a good night's sleep.

Kathleen and Anna were doing an overnight with Girl Scouts, so they missed out on all of the fun.

Speaker Heck May 7th 2006

A few photos from our picnic on Speaker Heck Island, Lake George, NY

speaker heck island May 7, 2006

Originally uploaded by peteshaw.
A few photos from our picnic on Speaker Heck Island, Lake George, NY

speaker heck island May 7, 2006

Originally uploaded by peteshaw.

A few photos from our picnic on Speaker Heck Island, Lake George, NY

speaker heck island May 7, 2006

Originally uploaded by peteshaw.
speaker heck island May 7, 2006

A few photos from our picnic on Speaker Heck Island, Lake George, NY

speaker heck island May 7, 2006

Originally uploaded by peteshaw.
speaker heck island May 7, 2006

A few photos from our picnic on Speaker Heck Island, Lake George, NY

Friday, May 12, 2006

trip to New York - photos - May 5, 2006

Originally uploaded by peteshaw.
Anna, Molly, PJ, and Andrew all climbed in the maple tree in Nina's front yard.
A trip to New York- May 8, 2006

I took Anna PJ to see their cousins Molly and Andrew and their uncle Mike and Aunt Loretta, and of course their grandmother Nina this past weekend up in New York. Everyone had an excellent time. We left around 3:30 on Friday, after Anna got home from school. The drive was as long as it normally is,but the kids were really good and it was nice for me to get a chance to kind of clear my head of all the stuff that's been stressing me out lately.

I barely saw the children for most of the weekend, as Aunt Loretta had all sorts of things planned for the children like taking them to "bounce-a-palooza", this expo center full of huge, bouncy things, and also taking them to a party at a neighbors house.

On Sunday we went for picnic on Speaker Heck island, on Lake George. Lake George has a network of hundreds of camping and picnic sites on its many islands on the lake. This early in the year the summer crowds haven't arrived yet so we had most of the island for ourselves- except for an angry goose and an older couple named Dave and Gene.

The kids had a great time wandering around the island. It was a beautiful day- in the 70's and clear. After we returned to Glens Falls Anna,PJ, and I went back to Nina's house and all went to bed early for the next day's trip back to Virginia.

We hit the road by 9:00 Monday morning. Nina road with us, which was a treat for the kids and she didn't even complain about my driving to much. We had a great time, as did Kathleen who was glad to get some time to herself (well, with Sam).

Sunday, May 07, 2006


I went up to New York to visit family this weekend, and I took Anna and Sam with me. 
Kathleen has been enjoying her time with Sam, sho is still a busy busy boy, but when it is just Sam, its way easier than it is with all three of the little ones.
Saturday morning Sam woke Kathleen up around 6:30AM, like he normally does.  But, since there was nothing else going on, Kathleen dozed off, with a side awake three year old in the room with her.  She woke up, about half an hour later, and the first thing she noticed was that Sam was eating something. 
While Kathleen was sleeping, Sam had gone looking around, and found a bunch of unopened girl scout cookies in her office.  He grabbed a box of Samoas, crawled back into bed with Kathleen, and started eating.  He was halfway through the first sleeve of cookies when she woke up.
Now, from Sam's point of view, this must have been huge!  "Here I am on a Saturday morning, cozy in bed with mom, eating cookies." he must have thought, "how great is this!"