Category Archives: Photos

Family Vacation – Day 1

We’ve just recently returned from our family vacation and I have a lot to report on! So, I’ll be doing a blog post to cover each day, along with additional blog posts on my genealogy blog for those events that are more genealogy related.

We were fortunate to be able to have all the boys with us for the vacation and I could not have been happier.  The boys are 14, 12, 11, & 8 now and it had been a year since we have all been together.  Kaleya of course was right up in the midst of everything they were doing and enjoyed being with all of her brothers.

Our trip started on Saturday morning, August 1 with us leaving Nashville to go to Evansville to pick up Kamau & Miles.  Unlike many of our trips to Evansville, we actually left pretty early and arrived around noon.  When we got there, Kamau & Miles were at a local church taking a cooking class.  Kamau is interested in going to culinary school and apparently they’ve been cooking with the church group all summer. The boys made Spicy Chili Mac w/ the help of Granny Kit-Kat and took it over to the church. After everyone had their dishes together, the group sat down to “sample” the food 🙂

Here is Miles as he gets some macaroni & cheese another church member made

Meanwhile, I was keen to note that the church we were at was VERY close to the Evansville Public Library. Since I was hoping that I could spend some time at the library to do some genealogy research, this was the perfect opportunity to ask Kalonji if he’d drop me off. He obliged and I spent several hours looking up dead people. It was great! Read my genealogy blog for more details.

That evening we relaxed with the family. Kalonji gave Miles a haircut and of course Kaleya had to try and help.

Notice that she and Kalonji are wearing matching t-shirts? Hip Hop Harry is a show that Kaleya started watching a couple of years ago.  Rap is used as an educational tool and the guy who plays Hip Hop Harry is the same one that did Barney.  Kalonji ordered matching tees for the two of them so now whenever one wants to wear it, the other has to as well :-). It’s kinda cute.

The rest of the evening was spent relaxing in preparation for our road trip on Sunday.

July 4th Fun

Yesterday was a very exciting July 4th! I took the kids downtown to join friends outside of the football stadium.  Fireworks were scheduled to begin at 9pm.  I’d not been to this before and was very much looking forward to it. Our friends set up a a tent outside the stadium and have food, games, fun, all kinds of stuff, for several hours before the show.  The tent we were in was pretty large, here is a view of just one side of it. There was room underneath for about 15 of us.

When we arrived at about 6pm, it was raining some, so we couldn’t sit out on the grass, but it did clear up for awhile. The kids all got goodies bags with things to keep them entertained, silly string, bubbles, confetti – they really enjoyed it. Here, Jihad checks out his goody bag.

At some point in between the rain, the fireworks crew set off some – our guess was to test the equipment but it was a fun teaser. I was talking through it in order to keep Kaleya excited; I didn’t want her to get too scared and she fortunately didn’t.

Then, after it was dark, it really started to rain again, so they started the fireworks early. It was so much fun! The finale was just crazy and I managed to get a clip of that:

We are all excited about going back next year. Then, today, we went to the movies to see Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian. That was entertaining, though, I don’t think it was as good as the first one.

Hope everyone also had a good weekend! The rest of our pictures are here.

Aloha – Day 2


It is almost noon on Monday, May 18th as I write this blog post, but here in lovely Hawaii, it is only 6:40am.  Yesterday was my 2nd day here and the fun continued!

I spent most of the morning working on school work. I am a full-time student after all, so being in Hawaii doesn’t even release me from my student responsibilities :-).  For lunch, I joined my coworkers at a nearby restaurant for dim sum.  I’m not sure exactly what I ate, but it was all good.  On the way to the restaurant, I passed this statue in front of the convention center

From Hawaii 2009


The statue represents the welcoming spirit of the Hawaiin people.  After lunch I headed to the convention center to look through the exhibits some more, and then had a massage courtesy of one of the vendors.  I so needed that massage – it felt great.  It was a little painful and my coworker tells me that is b/c I have a lot of tension that needs releasing. I agree 🙂 I must figure out a way to get another one. 

In the afternoon it was back to more school work but along the way back to the hotel I took more pictures.  The hotel has a village feel w/ a lot of open areas and spaces, so there is plenty to take pictures of.

From Hawaii 2009

  After getting more accomplished, it was time to head to the luau hosted by one of our vendors, OVID.  When I stopped by my coworkers room, I had to take a picture of their view of the ocean.  Absolutely gorgeous!

From Hawaii 2009  

  Then, we headed over to the luau.  They gave us leis made of fresh flowers too.

From Hawaii 2009

  The luau itself was fun – the food was good. I even ate a Hawaiin Purple Sweet Potato.  The purple sweet potatoes are native to Okinawa and in Hawaii are known as ‘uala. It was very good.  You can see what they look like by going here.  Entertainment for the evening was by way of a group of Polynesian dancers then a band performed several songs too.  I took  some video clips — one of the group dancing and then one of the guy w/ fire they also had.   Here is the group of polynesian dancers – I’ll put the fire guy up later.

Then, afterwards, came back and went to bed. I as pooped!  This morning however, we are going over to see Pearl Harbor, which I am very much looking forward to for family/genealogy reasons.  I will share more on that later.  I did add more pictures to my photo album, so if you looked once, look again! You can see them here.

Aloha! Day 1

From Hawaii 2009

Aloha! I am in the lovely state of Hawaii for a professional conference and so far so good :-).  By central time, I have been awake for almost 24 hours now. By Hawaii time, it is only midnight. 

I flew in to Denver, then to Honolulu.  Total flight time – about 11 hours. So, by the time it was all said in done, when I arrived at the hotel it was about 9pm at home (central time). I’d left the Nashville airport at 8am Central Time.  The flights themselves were okay. I slept most of the way, but got in quite a bit of reading of a medical/political thriller book I picked up in the aiport, Michael Palmer’s First Patient.  I also purchased James McBride’s latest book, Song Yet Sung,  though I don’t expect to read it right away. 

Once at the hotel, the Hawaii Hilton, I checked in, got settled and waited for my bag. Yes, my bag did not make it all the way with me, but it got oh so close!  Turned out that a person took my bag mistakenly at the 1st hotel that the hotel shuttle stopped at.  My hotel was the 2nd.  The guy who took my suitcase called and let them know, so they were able to go back to get it and bring it back to me (directly to my hotel room) within about 90 minutes.  I’d much prefer this situation rather than my bag not making it with me to Honolulu.  🙂

After a quick visit over to the convention center to register and attend the welcome reception, my coworkers and I began to get ready for the dinner cruise one of the vendors was hosting.  Buffett dinner on a cruise ship w/ live entertainment (singers & hula dancers)- it was fun!

I’ve got some pics of views from my hotel room window & some of the hula dancers from tonight.  TO SEE MORE PICTURES, VISIT MY ONLINE PHOTO ALB UM. I expect to be adding more pics as the days continue. 

Ta ta for now!

Pictures from the Swimming Pool Party


On Friday night, I took the kids to a birthday party for my coworker’s grandson who turned 5 this week.  The great thing about this party is that it was a pool party! Kaleya & Jihad enjoyed themselves and Kaleya was particulary distraught to have to leave.  Neither of them know how to swim, but it doesn’t stop them. However, this summer, Iam going to have to get them in swimming lessons. I can’t tell you how many times I panicked if Kaleya got too close to leaving the shallow end of the pool!

From Early 2009

And, here is Kaleya w/ Jackson’s daddy. He took her around the pool so she could at least feel like she was kinda swimming 🙂

From Early 2009

More pictures here.

Trip Home 4 Tha Holidays

For the holidays we went to NC to visit my family. Had a great time, and the kids enjoyed their extended holiday. Click on the pic below to see the album of pics


From Dec 2008


Holiday Party Photos

Photos from a holiday party this week at the home of our day care provider. It was fun and all the kids were so cute opening their presents and running around.

Kelli Graduates

My sister is now a college graduate! Here she is with her two roommates (who are cousins to each other) after the ceremonies yesterday.

And, here I am with her and our aunt.

Kelli graduated with her B.A. in Anthropology and plans to take a year off and apply to Vanderbilt’s Peabody College next year to pursue a Masters in Education. Meanwhile, she’ll be moving to Nashville and be working at my library for a year! So, upcoming posts are going to be more likely to include Kelli too 🙂 More pictures are here.