Just 4 Sydney-side Hartnells

Just 4 Sydney-side Hartnells

Friday, December 12, 2014

Last post about the good ol USA

Lots of family was visited during our trip to the US. Here we are with Marzena & Paul, cousins, at their house. We saw them at the anniversary party, but wanted to say goodbye too.

Gran Tat helped Nev to navigate the treacherous tiles of their kitchen.

Every night was story night...it just differed in which were read and by whom. Since we generally read the books at home, Gran Tat & Busha were frequently called upon.

Nev got a series on the blue engine that could and included the clown falling off his new birthday bike. He was "sad" and Nevlin was perplexed about it. Everyone was described as "sad" in the next few months. 

After Nev fell asleep, some of us played cards well into the night. With snacks on hand, the ladies were able to redeem earlier games and came out victors on the night before we left. Another trip wrapped up, hard to go home, but the visit was extra special with Nevlin.

Stripes and Splashes in WVA

Luck and time permitted us to get together with Nic, Augie & Ben in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia. This place was famous long before 2104 claiming George Washington not only slept there, but frequented the small resort. 

Lucky for Nevlin, Augie brought with him a few trucks, balls, and blankets to share a picnic lunch.

The rest of us hung out on a nearby picnic table with fresh water streams gurgling in the background.

The boys even got wet with each other & tried to splash as much of the fresh water out of the baths as possible. Finishing off the day with an ice cream and pinwheels was a treat in & of itself. We will miss Augie and hope to keep in touch on skype.

Ggpa at the Lake

The fridge got a little more rearranged and it was time for Cam's family to arrive. Again, we ran out of letters by the end.

Ggpa was greeted by the Nevlin in full fashion. Little did he know that Ggpa had been walking through that door for many, many years.

There were a few quiet moments spent outside, connecting or reconnecting with nature. Nev and his dad picked through rocks and sticks and dirt.

On the trip was also Nevlin's cousin and Aunt Nan. This beach ball was the best $1.50 investment I've made in a really long time.

Quiet walks through the surrounding streets are just one of the many benefits of the Lake house. Things are just a bit slower here than in your usual life, which is always welcome.

Here's a group shot of the family gathered, except this time E's taking the photo. Cam's uncle is on the far left and Drew was just a few months different from Nev.

Again, happiness and peace when the table was full of food. A beautiful weekend spent with fantastic family members.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Lake House with my fam part 2/2

We celebrated both Liam's 2nd birthday and also the anniversary of my parents with my brother and his family at the Lake. Here was the anniversary cake.

And the birthday cake.

The two little guys donned some Polish t-shirts about perogi. Taste and good for shirt slogans.

Here's the family portrait, taken of course by Cameron. It would be better with him in it, but all parties were not cooperating for a long photo shoot.

Generally there was peace in the house, especially when food and drink were involved. A short but nice trip.

Lake and the Norris clan part 1/2

We went to the lake house of Cam's fam to meet up with my brother as well. It was a fun trip with such an amazing setting. Imagine waking up to this scene every morning, life is beautiful.

My brother beat us there and rearranged the fridge to welcome everyone else. Not many letters were left!

Speaking of which, here is my brother with his son, Liam playing with cups on the couch. 

There was a bit of cousin rivalry between Nevlin & Liam, especially when it came to the attention of their Busha and Gran Tat.

"Come on Busha, this way..."

Sunday, November 23, 2014

200th post! Nashville, TN

We've had the pleasure of blogging for cyberspace for 199 posts, with this one to be a real knock-out. Cam & I headed to Tennessee for a little get-a-way for us as a couple of days. My parents did us the very kind favor of looking after little Nev. We ate like royalty with pancake breakfast and BBQ dinners.

To Tex-Mex lunches and ice tea with lemon aid a flowing.

We went to the capital building full of its classical architecture. I particularly enjoyed the grounds including all of the fountains.

Of course what trip to Music City USA would be complete without flying pigs adjacent to a famous theater.

They Ryman Theater was expecting Nash Bridges the night we visited. His name is on the sign behind Cam, but you can't see it here.

We also saw the Music hall of fame with all of its inductees. I didn't know most of them, but found this wicked cool car complete with over a dozen guns.

After a long day of walking around, we took a spell to listen to some live music from the Hard Rock Cafe right on the water while sipping a lemonade.

In addition to a morning where we almost escaped from a game, we spent our last morning at President Jackson's house, the Hermitage. It was a modest building, but extensive grounds. It would have been nice to spend more time, but we needed to get back to Nevlin and my parents. More family visits to Maryland on the horizon!


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Party for 40 second part

Nevlin is the fourth generation of both my and Cam's family. He was very lucky to be able to meet one maternal grandmother, Babci & see Busha again. Here are the four generations. He also got to meet his Cam's Ggpa (Cam's mom's father) who you will see in a later post.

What party would be complete without a puppy! Here's my cousin Jim's newest family addition.

Many of my dad's first cousins were able to join us to celebrate the wedding from a few decades ago. All of these people are related through their mothers, who were the 5 snoop sisters.

Nev even had a little play buddy for part of the afternoon. He doesn't exactly play "with" his friends yet, but at least he is trying to learn how to share and get along, most of the time.

Those glasses remained a hit, even after the festivities.

NEXT POST: 200th!!! That one will be a throw back to some of our earliest posts, just about C & E! Stayed tuned.

40 year party

My parents celebrated 40 yrs of being married in Sept of this year and we surprised them with a party while I was home with Cam & Nev. It turned out to be a great time, with lots of food of course. 

Nevlin was able to recover and maintain control over all of the balls available. He even scored a turn with Busha's glasses.

A photo that my parents took 40 years ago on their wedding day was similar to this shot. I was about as close to an official photographer as they ever had!

This was the bridal party from those many years ago. Still looking pretty good!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Cleve-berg family time

Most evenings, ok all evenings, concluded in story time. Nevlin had the choice of several different voices and stories. Some nights he even got to have two different people read to him at the same time. 

He also got to spend some QT with cousins like Jess. Teach me chop sticks please!

Lots of good food and hearty laughs with all the cuzes at Cioci's new place over some chicken paprikash.

There was even time for a bowling night out with friends. Here's Cam about to roll a spare. Knock 'em down partner!

Nevlin had a play date with my high school friend Moc's daughter and son. Here is Lauren and Nev sharing some sand play. It was a fun sunny day to share with friends. 

Zoo & Aquarium

We went to the Cleveland zoo and were able to act a bit younger than we generally get to do. Many of my family have listened out of these ears...they can be donkey ears, or kangaroo ears or you decide.

We all headed to the zoo, my parents, grandmother, Cam, Nev & I and took turns pulling or pushing or carrying the snacks. Cam was in charge of the camera. 

Not sure if you've noticed over the few years, but I am obsessed with cutouts. I'm going to create an entire photo album of them one of these days, once I'm finished collecting. 

Lucky for us, we found another cutout at the Cleveland Aquarium. It was Captain Nemo and the sea monster he befriended.

The aquarium had many fresh and exotic fish. Nevlin got to pet a turtle, which he was quite fascinated with but unsure to touch. There also was a walk-through tunnel where sea creatures were both next to you and above you.

The best was when the octopus decided to move from one side of the tank over your head to the other. He was particularly busy opening plastic jars full of treats put into the tank by the staff.
Next up: the family in Ohio and then a P-A-R-T-Y!