Monday, September 19, 2016

Trip to Rome (Pt 1): the Happiest Pilgrim of Them All

With the promise of a ticket to attend the saint-making of one of the most vocal advocates for the world's poorest and most forgotten...



...by this Pope, 



during this Jubilee Year...


Yeah, you bet I wanted to be there.


The first view of St. Peter's Square, all set up for the big event to which anywhere from half a million to two million were expected to show up, was indescribable.  


There is a tapestry of Mother Teresa's image there, above the crucifix

It is huge
I had a few hours to kill before the festivities got started so I joined the line to climb to the top of the dome.  It is very, very high up there. Over 500 stairs. 

Okay, now this place is HUGE.  It could probably fit 5 French cathedrals
in the front part alone...


This photo is not crooked, the sloped wall on the left is the inner layer of the dome:


It was a tight fit, and extremely crowded and hot. A bunch of other folks had the
 same idea, it turns out...

Views from the top:


Hey, I'm going to be down there tomorrow and the next day.  With like,
a million or two other people!

On the roof, I paused to take some photos and found the happiest pilgrim of them all: it was a young mentally disabled man, maybe close to 20 years old, from Ireland. He was with his father and they were posing for photos. 
He had a big smile for the camera but couldn't hold it straight for more than a few seconds because he couldn't help himself from repeating: "The VAT-ican! The VAT-ican!" Over and over and over again.

Yup. Right there with you, brother.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Saturday, April 2, 2016

BR is 9!

For his party, were used the all-new mini-golf course built from scratch by BR's dad.






We had cake and balloons and friends and all the good stuff. It was a HIT.





Happy birthday, little guy. You are now our only kid in the single-digits-age. Better milk it, I guess.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

AM is 10

We had a "backwards-upside-down-topsy-turvy" themed party for little AM (Big AM!  She is BIG!).


Guests showed up with their t-shirts inside out, or backwards, or some other silly, mismatched ensemble.

We ate under the table, instead of at it.  We served our cupcakes upside down.


They watched a silly movie and then had a sleepover, and for extra confusion, answered all questions in reverse.  ("Do you want another slice of pizza," I would ask. "No, no thank you!")


The next morning, we killed a pinata, and then roamed around the bike park.  The party was a hit, we had a great time.  



And now our littlest gal is now in her second decade!


Monday, February 8, 2016

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Science Fair

All three were top finishers in their grade levels!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Tae Kwon Do Competition


We drove about 150 miles early Saturday morning to attend the State Championships

(Southwestern sunrise, February)
(Their TWD "Academy" had the most attendees--see far right row of kids)
A. and BR each came home with a couple of trophies
This was probably my favorite event to watch: short foam sword battles, ha!

A., waiting her turn to do her kata's in the finals---she missed getting first place by only 0.01 points!

video

Friday, January 15, 2016

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Christmas 2015

We went to NC for Christmas, by way of GA (briefly)
It was warm! Even hot!




We went to the beach (river beach), we played outside, we saw some of these hooligans (and others though I don't have photo proof).



It was fun.
Our own house seems extra cold and quiet now.
I guess we will get used to it. Maybe.
Eventually.