Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Broadmoor Hotel

This will be the final post about the fun visit with my sister Kim and brother-in-law Randy. We went to lunch on Saturday before they flew back to Houston at the famous Broadmoor Hotel. The grounds are beautiful and the food was delicious especially the famous Berries in Cream and the Creme Brule.

And I must include the QUOTE OF THE WEEK in this post. When Uncle Randy arrived in town on Wednesday, Caleb was delighted and didn't want to let Randy out of his sight. At one point, Caleb had a dirty diaper. We told him that we needed to change him, but he wanted Uncle Randy to do it. Smart man that Randy is, he told Caleb that he didn't know how to change his diaper to which Caleb replied, "I'll teach you!"

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Pikes Peak

While Kim and Randy were in The Springs, we decided that going to the top of Pikes Peak, America's Mountain, was a must.
David was the only one of the 4 of us who had been before and he had driven up.
The other 3 of us decided that we would prefer going up on the Pikes Peak Cog Railway. After all, it has been running for over 110 years with no serious accidents.
On a bright sunny morning, we boarded the train in the little town of Manitou Springs and I must say, the sights exceeded my wildest imagination! What a loving God to create such beauty for us to enjoy!
Although these pictures definitely show the beauty of the sights we viewed, they don't even begin to compare to the real thing.
The conductor on the rail car we rode was a delightful college student studying to be a lawyer. She taught us many things and made us all laugh and have fun in the process. There was only one time when I felt a little nervous (I am afraid of heights), but it was worth a little fear to see such beauty.
The temperature at the bottom of the mountain was about 80-85 degrees. As you can see from this photo, the temperature at the peak was not quite so warm--34 degrees. However, since the sun was shining and the winds were not too high (they can sometimes exceed 100 MPH), we were able to survive the cold. Hot chocolate and special high altitude donuts helped.

Did you know that the song America the Beautiful was written after a trip up Pikes Peak? Katharine Lee Bates was a guest lecturer at Colorado College and she and fellow professors made a trip up Pikes Peak in a wagon. She was so inspired by the view, as have been millions of people since then, that she wrote, America the Beautiful. The song was in the running to be the national anthem, but The Star Spangled Banner was that honor on March 3, 1931. Many people have said that America the Beautiful would be a better choice because it is so much easier for the common person to sing.

Friday, August 28, 2009

United States Olympic Training Center

If you are ever in Colorado Springs, you need to visit the United States Olympic Training Center. This is the center where Olympic hopefuls spend anywhere from a summer to 2 to 3 years training. I would have thought that they trained in Colorado for the Winter Olympics, but that is done at Lake Placid, New York. The Colorado Springs center is for Summer Olympic Athletes. The grounds are beautiful and the tour is very informative.
In the front of the center is a wonderful Sculpture Garden.
Some of the sculptors were there and asked David, Randy, Kim and I to pose for their newest sculpture. They were able to complete it in record time and you can see the results in the picture above. (If you believe that, I have some swamp land in Florida to sell you.)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

In Loving Memory of Grady Burke

My sister's brother-in-law and our friend, Grady Burke, was killed in the line of duty, performing the work he loved as a firefighter. Today, we went to the Fallen Firefighter's Memorial here in Colorado Springs. As you view the photos from this peaceful place, please take a minute to remember Grady's precious family as well as the families of all our fallen heros who protect us each and every day.

Thank you, Grady! We miss you!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Sweet Daughter-in-Love

This picture is of me with my two daughters--one by birth and the other chosen for me by my son Jeremy. David and I cannot imagine life without our precious Mandy and today, August 27th, is her birthday.

Kim's Visit

Here are some highlights of my sister Kim's visit.
The first day she was here, we spent quite a bit of time with Caleb. As I am sure the discriminating eye can tell, Kim and Caleb are eating "french fries" (bark mulch) in this photo taken at one of our favorite parks. The priceless picture that I missed was when they were holding hands and praying, telling God "Thank You" for the delicious meal.
Yesterday Kim and I went to Garden of the Gods. We took lots of pictures.

Drinking lots of water is a necessity in this high altitude.

We had an amazing view because it was bright and sunshiny when we arrived and then the clouds rolled in so we got to see the rock formations both in sunlight and shadow.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

My Sister Is Coming!!!

My sister is coming to see me! Of course, all of you who know her and me, and who look at this picture, know who she is REALLY coming to see!

Friday, August 21, 2009

All My Children

This picture was taken when Kelly and Adrian visited Colorado before David and I moved here. Don't I have a precious family?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Cooking Angel

I made a rash promise to David that when I retired, I would cook every night! What was I thinking? Modern women don't do that, do they?
I have a group of precious "Teacher Friends". Darlene, Carolyn, Pat, Mary, Joyce, Cindy and I taught 4th grade at Moore Elementary for many years and we still get together for dinner, catching up, and lots of laughter every 6 months or so. At our last dinner together before I moved, they gave me this precious kitchen angel. She sits on my new kitchen counter and reminds me of my promise to my sweet husband.
I hope no one checks with David to see how well I have kept that promise.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

THE Card Catalogue

My wonderful co-workers at Pasadena ISD gave me the antique above for one of my retirement gifts. You have to know the story behind this one. I have wanted a card catalogue for many years and have searched for one in every antique store that I have ever visited. I had an image in my mind of the perfect one and I never found it. My co-workers knew this and started searching on-line. The were not having much luck with ones close to the Houston area and the shipping costs from ones far away were outrageous. That's where my son, Jeremy, came in. He got on-line and started searching and found the card catalogue above right in the Houston area--no shipping costs. Many of the precious people who work with me polished it, created labels for the drawers, and hid it from me until my retirement reception. Talk about a surprise! And the amazing thing is, this is the exact card catalogue that was in my mind's eye all those years.
Thank you so much Pasadena friends. It has a proud place in my new home and I think of you when I look at it.
P.S. Two high school students were in attendance at the reception. When the card catalogue was unveiled, and they saw how excited I was, they asked someone, "What is that thing?" Talk about feeling old.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Uncle Wilbur's Fountain

One of Caleb's (and therefore Nana and Ducca's) favorite spots in The Springs is a downtown fountain named Uncle Wilbur's Fountain. On the hour and half hour, Uncle Wilbur appears to play his tuba. The children love it. The other day when Caleb and I were talking about it, I said that we like Uncle Wilbur because we like music. He agreed and said that when he grew up, he was going to play a tuba. He then declared that when he grew up he was going to BE Uncle Wilbur. Enjoy the video below of the little man having fun in the Uncle Wilbur Fountain.

Flowers of Colorado

Before we moved to Colorado, when I thought of the beauty of the state, I thought of the mountains. I didn't realize that there would be so many beautiful flowers. I'm not sure what these purple flowers are but they are everywhere.
Most of the pictures below were taken on the grounds of the Broadmoor Hotel.
BEAUTIFUL place! Thank you Darlene for recommending. We had a delightful anniversary lunch there.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Happy Anniversary

THEN: August 14, 1972
NOW: August 14, 2009

What a wonderful 37 years it has been!
Here's to many more!

Surprise Visitors

This week is David's and my anniversary so when he told me that he had to pick up a surprise, I didn't suspect anything unusual. It turns out that the whole family pictured above (except me) was in on the surprise. See our surprise visitors below.
We didn't expect Kelly and Adrian to come to Colorado until November, but they were going to a mini family reunion in New Mexico for Adrian's family so they stopped by here on their way. David picked them up at the airport and brought them home to surprise me! What a great short visit it was!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Decadence of Retirement

For those of you who are wondering, retirement is wonderful.
Today I needed to go grocery shopping in the middle of the day.
And on the way, I realized that I was a little hungry.
So.....Cold Stone Creamery to the rescue!
The grocery store was close to a wonderful little lookout spot, so I sat on a bench eating my ice cream. It's not Blue Bell, but it was delicious.
There was a big black bird at the top of the tower who was also enjoying the view. I was a little afraid he might decide to swoop down and share my ice cream.
If you come and visit us in The Springs, I'll take you for some ice cream and the view!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Terry

Happy Birthday Terry!
You were the first in our family to be a grandparent and have shown us all how this "grandparenting thing" should be done.
In looking for pictures of you, I realized that I don't have many. You do a good job of avoiding the camera. So I thought you would enjoy having your two precious grandsons featured in your birthday post.

The picture below shows grandpa Terry along with Aunt Jenny trying to get a smile out of baby Nathan.

Hope you have a very special day, Terry!
You deserve it because you are a very special brother.

Caleb William Gibson with His Two Grandmothers

The little guy in the middle looks happy, doesn't he?
Well of course he is happy. On his left is AnnMa, Mandy's mom.
And on his right is Nana, Jeremy's mom.
Who wouldn't be happy with two doting grandmothers?
This picture was taken outside of FAMOUS DAVE'S a great BBQ restaurant. The Springs doesn't know how to do Mexican Food (or at least we haven't found the right restaurant yet) but they do know how to do BBQ.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Beauty in the Ordinary

I have learned many things from my children and their spouses, but today's lesson comes from my daughter. She is an expert at using beautiful things for ordinary purposes. This is a Fiesta heart bowl. In the past, I have displayed it, but really don't have a perfect use for it.
So........I decided to put my sponges in it so that I can enjoy using it every day when I am doing the very ordinary chore of doing dishes!

Antique Kitchen

As many of you know, I love antiques. That's probably why I love David so much. (Just kidding sweetheart!) So my house begins to feel like a home when I start displaying my various treasures. These are fun antique kitchen items. The picture above shows a child sized icebox and stove. They are made of metal and are very heavy. Kelly and I found them when on a fun antique shopping trip. On this trip we actually shopped in our PJ's because there was a little shop upstairs by our room in the Bed and Breakfast we stayed at, and we were the only guests.
This collection includes Ritz and Premium Saltine cracker tins which I hesitate to call antique because I actually used them in my kitchen for several years. Does that make me an antique?
These canisters belonged to my Grandma Bergeron. (Thank you Sweetie for sharing.) She was one of the best cooks I have ever known, and I am sure she scooped many a cup of sugar and flour out of these canisters for some of her famous cookies. In a future post, I'll include a recipe for some of her delicious cookies.