Friday, May 30, 2008

Brenda's Photo Challenge

Okay, I think I got this photo challenge right this time. LOL Brenda is our hostess and Debrah picked the theme for the challenge this time. My good blogging buddy Donna is playing along and Nita is also in the challenge. Go visit all of them and see what goodies they have. So when I found out the theme was liquid I knew I was just going to have fun with this one. Nothing extraordinary about these photos, just my very favorite liquids to drink. Okay without any more fanfare, my number one favorite drink, the elixir of life(you think I'm kidding on that one don't you?) LOL COFFEE, COFFEE, COFFEE Every morning it's the first thing I go for. Love it freshly brewed and hot. Can't you just smell it now?

And then every afternoon I allow myself one Diet Coke and I like it with lots of ice. I don't usually use a fancy goblet like this but hey why not use your fancy goblets for everyday? Why wait for company when it's so much fun to drink out of pretty things. How can you not be a Diet Coke fan?

And then my favorite spirited bubbly drink. Pink Champagne!! I'll admit I love a good glass of red wine and that is usually what I order when we go out to eat but every once in awhile I just have to have a good glass of bubbly and Pink Champagne fills that spot. Mumm's Blanc De Noirs is one of my favorites. So there you have it, my three photos for the liquid challenge. Like I said I just decided to have fun with this one and went with it. By the way, I took about 25 different photos trying to get these photos because I was pouring the drinks and trying to take the photos at the same time. I did try my little tripod to take some photos but I wasn't getting the angles I wanted, so I took all of these with one hand which is not that easy to do because my hand was shaking trying to hold the camera with one hand and hit the button for the photo. Let's all have a glass of Pink Champagne and toast the weekend being here. Cheers!!! Fun challenge girls!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Grandma's little sporty car has been turned into a grandbaby mobile. :-) We ventured out to Target yesterday afternoon. Hey after being in the house for a week, my daughter Melissa was ready for a trip to everyone's favorite store. Sydney didn't wake up the whole time and after some little old ladies were ohhing and ahhing over Maddie and Sydney at Target and saying what a good big sister Maddie was, she had a meltdown in the food aisle of Target. LOL

My son Jimmy came over with Cameron for a visit so we put the two babies together on the couch for a photo op. Cameron is about eight weeks older then Sydney. He seems so big compared to her. They didn't pay one bit of attention to each other. LOL

And don't you just love this photo? It will go somewhere on my blog as a permanent fixture because I just LOVE it. All three grandbabies sleeping together on Grandma's couch. I am also using this as my desktop background on my laptop.

You guys know I couldn't show just one photo when I have lots. LOL Hey, I have about 50 other ones that I'm not showing you that I took yesterday. I want to get them all Cincinnati Reds outfits and have them all photographed together. Cameron already has a Red's outfit but I am looking for pink ones for the girls. You know I'll post those photos if I ever find some girly Red's outfits. Have a great Wednesday! I thought about doing the last two photos for a Wordless Wednesday but everyone knows I stink at that one. :-)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


Our firstborn turns 30 today. She is also known as Maddie and Sydney Ann's mommy. This first photo was taken last September while we all were in Hilton Head. Since Sydney is only one week old we do not have any photos of the whole family yet.

Here's a photo of Melissa and her younger brother Jim. Maddie and Sydney look so much like Melissa did when she was born.

I always used to fix her hair like Pebbles Flintstone. My kids always laugh about these big pieces of yarn that I'd put in as a hair ribbon. LOL

And this last photo was just last week after she gave birth to little Sydney Ann. I know you have seen some of these photos before but I couldn't scan some new ones in this week. So it's been a busy weekend, we celebrated Melissa's birthday with a grill out yesterday and her hubby brought home her favorite cake from Bonbonerie bakery here in Cincy. You gain weight just looking at their stuff, it's that good. We had to take baby Sydney to the outpatient hospital on Sunday. She had some jaundice(spelling??) and they wanted to monitor it, it is getting better and we are taking her back to the doctor tomorrow. Happy Birthday Melissa! You are a great Mom and wife and we love you!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend ya'll!! Hope you all are having a fun and safe weekend. If you have some time go to KLOVE and thank our troops. They have a link where you can write you own personal note of thanks to all who serve our country. Thank you to all who are serving and who served! We are just hanging out this weekend. Our pool is opened but the only thing swimming in it are the ducks who think it's their personal lake. UGHHHH!!! They are dirty and messy. Last year the Mama duck brought her babies back to our pool to take a swim and of course the babies jumped in the pool but could not get out. So my daughter Christina had to get the skimmer and scoop them out. And what did the Mama duck do while Christina was helping the babies? She literally squeezed herself under a small opening at the bottom of our fence that surrounds the pool and ran into the woods. Talk about a Mommy Dearest! LOL When we got all the little ones out of the pool they all ran off to the woods also. We never seen them again until this spring. If anyone knows how to stop the ducks from swimming in our pool, let me know. They leave nice little calling cards all over the concrete. :-) So we are going to grill out and just relax all weekend, we are suppose to have some nice weather. Memorial Day is always the beginning of my favorite time of year. I love Summertime!! Have a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Photos, Photos, Photos!

Are you guys tired of baby photos yet? LOL Well, just a few more I promise. Well, I can't really promise because I just love taking pictures of my grandbabies. :-) If you click on the whole collage it should come up larger to read the captions. First I wanted to show you just how much Maddie and Sydney looked alike at birth in the top two left hand photos. Do you think maybe they were twins separated by 21 months? No one in our family can get over how much they look alike, even for being sisters. The other photos are a collage of our last few days, which has consisted of going up to the hospital to visit Mommy, Daddy and Sydney and going to visit our Cncinnati Zoo. I know I have told you this before but we have a wonderful zoo in Cincinnati and if you live anywhere near here, you will not be disappointed in visiting it. My son Jimmy and his son Cameron came with us to the zoo along with Christina(our youngest daughter) and Papa. Maddie was in awe of the peacocks and the polar bears were her favorite. In the middle photo on the right there is a polar bear in the background, she thought they were great fun! And see the Sea Eagle on the bottom left photo, well do you remember last September when I went to Alaska and searched for any kind of eagle? Every single port we went into on our cruise I searched for an eagle and nada, nothing, zilch........LOL Well, all I had to do was go to the zoo and see one. Man those birds are big! And Maddie fell sound asleep in Grandma's car even before we left the Zoo's parking lot. It's been a fun and eventful week and Mommy and Daddy and baby Sydney are coming home tonight. Can you believe that they let women who have a c-section out of the hospital in a couple of days now? When I had my kids back in the dark ages I stayed in for a full week and they even had me come in the night before the surgery and gave me a sleeping pill so I could sleep. I had schedule c-sections also. I am making my way around blogland to see what exciting things everyone has been up to. Thanks for sharing this special time with my family!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Welcome Sydney Ann!

Welcome Sydney Ann! Little Sydney Ann was born this morning at 812am and she weighed in at a whopping 9 pounds and 6 ounces. She is so cute and so sweet. Maddie was such a big girl. We got her up at 545am to go to the hospital so Mommy and Daddy could see her before surgery. This is a photo right before they took Melissa into the operating room. Melissa did great, she had a problem with low blood pressure so they had to give her drugs to offset that which in turn made her sick and kind of woozy. So she's pretty wiped out this afternoon, but hopefully that will pass soon and she can enjoy some time with little Sydney Ann. Okay, here were the names they had picked out and they didn't decide till about noon today on which one. The first name was Sydney Ann, and then there was Hayley Ann, Kara Ann or Lilly Ann. My Mom's name was Ann and Melissa was very close to her. My parents used to take Melissa on vacations with them when she was young. Anyway, I love the name Sydney Ann.

Maddie fell sound asleep while Mom was getting settled in her room, so we put her and Sydney side by side for a sister pose. Aren't they so sweet? Actually Sydney looks so much like Maddie did when she was born.

Papa is holding his new little granddaughter. She looks so sweet with that finger in her mouth. She looks so big to me, look at those chubby little cheeks!

Aunt Chrissa kept Maddie entertained while Mommy and Daddy were in surgery. Maddie had a ball playing with her and a new little friend named Zoe.

One more photo in Papa's arms!

I wonder if Maddie thinks Sydney Ann is a cat. She pets her like she does Grandma's kitty cat. LOL

Beautiful Sydney Ann!
Mommy and Sydney Ann.
Thanks for everyone's kind words and prayers. You guys are the best and I am so grateful to have such friends through blogging. Okay, I've been up since around 430am so I am going to try and get Maddie down for a little nap and I may take one with her. LOL

Monday, May 19, 2008

Countdown to Baby Sis and my Great Niece and Great Nephew

In less then 24 hours, this little precious girl will be here. We will finally see her pretty face. My daughter Melissa is schedule for a c-section at 745am tomorrow morning, so if you have some time will you please say a prayer for her? There is some anxiety with the surgery and all that is going on. But delivering the baby should ease her gallbladder problems. So tonight Maddie comes to spend the night with Grams and Papa and we will get her up bright and early so she can go to the hospital and visit her new sis. It'll be a long day but we are all so excited. I'll post some photos later tomorrow.

And I told you 2008 was the year of babies around here. These little twins are my great niece and nephew. It simply blows my mind when I say I am a great aunt, it sounds like I am soooooooooo old. Well, looking at this photo, I do look old and I look like I need to get more serious about Weight Watchers, PRONTO. I always show my weight in my face and stomach. Anyway sorry had to go off on a tangent for a moment. LOL But look at these sweet angels, the girl's name is Casey and the boy is Colin.

They were getting christened yesterday. When they were born they only weighed a little over 4 pounds each and they have doubled their weight since then. They are doing great and are just so sweet. This is my sister Gail and my Dad with the twins.

And here is the proud family. My niece Jenny and her husband Jon and the twins and big sis Bailey. I swear Jenny does not look like she just had twins a little over a month ago.

And I just had to show you Casey's christening gown. Isn't it gorgeous? Jenny had both christening outfits made from her wedding dress. I thought that was such a good idea. They were both so lovely.

Anyway, it seems like it is raining babies around here but it's fun. I will try to come visiting as much as I can this week, but it might be hard with everything going on around here. But I just have to know what everyone is doing out there in blogland so you know I'll be checkin in on ya. Have a great week!

Edited: I just added a new banner (again) LOL. Let me know what you think of it. I wanted a banner that had both my family and my love of travel in it and this is what I came up with. The photo on the left(in middle) is of Italy and the photo on the right is of Paris and it has my favorite beverage in it---coffee. :-) I can easily switch out photos as the babies change. Look at the new photo of my grandson Cameron in his Red's outfit and the one with his Mommy, Allison. Okay I'm done playing for the day, I really do have work to do but this is so much more fun. LOL

Saturday, May 17, 2008

How many people in the U.S.A. have your name?
LogoThere are
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

I seen this on another blog and thought I would play along. There are only 24 people in the United States with my full name. My first name and married last name. There are 477,419 people with the first name of Joan. Statistically it ranks 118 as the most popular first name. 97.4 percent of people with the first name of Joan are female. There are 15,600 people in the US with our last name. And it is statistically the 2463rd most popular last name.
Anyway, it's kind of a fun game to play this weekend. Hope everyone is having a fabulous weekend. It finally stopped raining and the sun is shining today but it's a little cooler than normal for this time of year. After two weeks of hardly working, my laptop is working again. I don't know what it's problem was but I LOVE my laptop. It wasn't connecting to the wireless internet. Anyway it has decided to be good again and I'm a happy camper. Let's just hope it doesn't go back to being naughty again. Have a great weekend and go check out how many people have your name.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Photo Challenge

My good blogging buddy Donna is hosting a photo challenge today and here are my photos for the challenge. I am by no means a photographer and I am always in awe of all of you guys whom I visit who can make something ordinary into something extraordinary with your photography. That is a true gift and one I enjoy seeing. These photos were actually taken a few years ago with my very first digital camera that my son had given me. It was big and bulky but it did take some nice photos. My sweetie and I were coming back from the Cincinnati airport, which is located in Kentucky(that's a whole post for another day). It was about 8am and we always come across the ferry on the Ohio River instead of one of the bridges to get to our neck of the woods. I grew up on the Ohio River and love going across it in this way. The only downside is you sometimes have to wait for the ferry to come back across to get you. As we were waiting we took these photos of the fisherman fishing in the first photo and the ferry going across in the second. There is just something so cool about the fog on the river. We took these photos(and more) and had them blown up and put in black frames with a white mat and they now hang in our kitchen. Hope you enjoy them and thanks Donna for putting this together.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rain, Rain Go Away..........

It's been raining here in Cincinnati the past few days, which kind of makes my hair look like this dog in the picture. LOL Things are kind of busy now that there is less then a week till the new baby comes. On Tuesday morning, my daughter Melissa goes into the hospital for a schedule c-section. And guess who is coming to stay at Grandma and Papa's house for the week? We have Maddie while Mommy is in the hospital. We have lots of things planned for next week. I'm hoping our weather gets better so we can go to the Cincinnati Zoo and see the zoo babies.
So this time next week, a new baby girl will be here and I can't wait to see her. We decided to limit Maddie's time at the hospital because she is very clingy to Mom these days and I'm not sure how she'll react when we have to leave. We are taking her to the hospital on Tuesday morning so she can be there to meet her new sister. I'm sure they will be best buds before long.
Well, that's about it for me today. Tomorrow is the weekend. YEA! My youngest daughter Christina and I are making plans to go and see Jersey Boys, which starts a run in Cincy next week. Melissa says she'll be too busy to go with us. Can't imagine why she says that. LOL Has anyone seen Jersey Boys? I've heard good things about it but you never know. Hope you are having a wonderful Thursday!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Travel Tuesday ~ World's Best Treehouse Hotels ~

This came across my work e-mail the other day and I thought it was just so fascinating. All of the information below is taken from Travel & Leisure magazine, a fun magazine to browse through. I think this would be so much fun to do someday. The article said that at the Tranquil resort in India, which is a coffee and vanilla plantation on 400 acres of rainforest that the chances are high that guests will find themselves surprised by howler monkeys(don't even think about asking me what a howler monkey is)who dance on the roof at night and have even surprised guests by coming into bathrooms unannounced. They could have at least knocked on the door. LOL
I just thought this was such a unique thing and this is one that I would do. I know this is a long post but I thought it was so much fun I couldn't pick and choose just a few. Hope you enjoy!

Tsala Treetop Lodge

Plettenberg Bay, South Africa

Why It’s Unique: Overlooking the Tsitsikamma Forest, the architecturally stunning stone-and-glass lodge has 10 secluded treehouse suites, each with floor-to-ceiling bedroom windows, log fireplace in the living room, private deck, and infinity-edge pool.
Access: Wooden walkways.
What to Do: During the day, explore South Africa’s Garden Route, which winds along the botanically rich Western Cape, or relax on the beaches at nearby Plettenberg Bay.

Sanya Nanshan Treehouse

Hainan Island, China

Why It’s Unique: Built into a stand of tamarind trees, the “Big Beach in the Sky” treehouse sleeps four in rustic accommodations steps away from the blue waters of the South China Sea. While the treehouse does have electricity, guests will have to walk 35 feet to a hot shower.
Access: Rope-and-plank suspension bridge.
What to Do: Visit the botanical gardens and temples of the adjacent 5,000-acre Nanshan Buddhism Cultural Theme Park, which includes a 354-foot statue of the Buddha Guanyin.

The Aviary ~ Lenox Massachusetts

Why It’s Unique: Located on 22 acres of parkland designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the two-story Aviary treehouse in the Berkshire Mountains features limestone wet room with an antique soaking tub, circular stairs leading to the second-floor sleeping quarters, and a Bang & Olufsen entertainment system.
Access: Ground-floor entrance.
What to Do: Sample the season’s bounty in Wheatleigh’s elegant Dining Room restaurant, or poke around the historic area’s local galleries, antique shops, and museums.

Tranquil Resort ~ Wayanad, Kerala, India

Why It’s Unique: Located in southern India on a private 400-acre estate complete with a working coffee and vanilla plantation, in the Kerala rainforest, the resort has a main lodge with eight well-appointed rooms. The 500-square-foot treehouse, built from coffee wood and equipped with a king-size bed, has a full bath, veranda, and the trunk of a flowering Royal Poinciana growing through the bedroom.
Access: Ascending stairs, rope bridge, and “water lift.”
What to Do: Relax by the pool, try a traditional ayurvedic massage, or take a tour of the working coffee and vanilla plantation.

Tree House Lodge ~ Limon, Costa Rica

Why It’s Unique: The 10-acre beachfront property, located in the Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge on Costa Rica’s southern Caribbean coast, features a sustainably built treehouse made from fallen trees, with solar heating, two bedrooms, a kitchen, and a shower built around the crooks and roots of a massive 100-year-old Sangrillo tree.
Access: Hanging steel bridge.
What to Do: Snorkel or kayak off the nearby Punta Uva Beach

Ariau Towers Hotel ~ Brazilian Amazon

Why It’s Unique: Ariau Amazon Towers Hotel, one of the largest commercial treehouse hotels in the world, is located 35 miles from the Amazon gateway city of Manaus. Accommodations include the President Lula “Tarzan House,” built at canopy level with its own private balcony, plunge pool, and Jacuzzi.
Access: Stairwells and wooden catwalks (which stretch for 10 miles and are flanked by incredible flora and fauna).
What to Do: Don’t miss the two 150-foot-high observation towers for clear views into the awe-inspiring jungle.

Cedar Creek Treehouse ~ Ashford, Washington

Why It’s Unique: Tucked 50 feet up in the air in a centuries-old cedar and bordering Gifford Pinchot National Forest, the Cedar Creek Treehouse is outfitted with a sleeping loft, kitchen, and glass-enclosed observation room with indoor hammock.
Access: Winding stairwell.
What to Do: Take in even greater views from the recently added observatory—100 feet up a nearby fir tree—which looks out on majestic Mount Rainier. Or, drive 10 minutes for a day hike in stunning Mount Rainier National Park.

Hichchonbrook Island Wilderness Lodge ~ Hichchonbrook Island, Australia

Why It’s Unique: Hinchinbrook, a 96-acre national park with lush rainforests, rugged mountains, and coarse sandy beaches, has just one option for accommodations: the Wilderness Lodge, a secluded hideaway with 15 roomy timber treehouses, each with floor-to-ceiling glass windows, small kitchen, private balcony and bath, and easy beachfront access.
Access: Winding timber boardwalks.
What to Do: Explore one of the island’s 11 secluded beaches, and in the evening relax at the Wilderness Lodge bar.

Maravu Plantation ~ Matei, Fiji

Why It’s Unique: Maravu, which sits on Fiji’s 168-square-mile Taveuni Island, features a treehouse built in an ancient rain tree with sweeping views of the turquoise-tinged South Pacific, as well as interior comforts like leather and palm-wood furniture and an outdoor courtyard with an open-air shower and a Jacuzzi pool.
Access: Rising staircase.
What to Do: Relax at the resort’s spa with a massage or a hydrating coconut scrub, or explore nearby Bouma National Heritage Park’s pristine rainforest and 65-foot waterfalls.

Playa Via ~ Juluchuca, Mexico

Why It’s Unique: Located north of Acapulco on Mexico’s Pacific Coast, eco-friendly Playa Viva is scheduled to open in November 2008. Three treehouse casitas will be completely built with sustainable materials; each will have a bedroom and full porch for dining and lounging, and the master development plan calls for a beach club, lounge, and 40-room boutique hotel, plus solar-generated electricity and hot water.
Access: Series of stairs, ramps, and bridges.
What to Do: Tour the resort’s 200 acres, 80 percent of which is a private nature preserve.