September 23, 2008

I'm Back!

This is just a quick blog to let those who read this know that I am alive. Last week I was on vacation in Maggie Valley, North Carolina with my family. Here is a short version of the trip for all those interested…

My parents, grandma and Aunt Doris went with me on this trip. We stayed at my dad’s friend’s house which was really more like a log cabin mansion. It was a really nice house, but will be much nicer once finished. It would also be nicer if his “interior designer” actually did the job correctly – but this is another story. I was supposed to be staying in the finished bedroom downstairs. However, I only lasted there for one night due to spiders. UGH – I HATE spiders. I killed a few and couldn’t sleep after thinking they could be in the room/bed with me. Ick! So, for the remaining nights I ended up sleeping on an oversized chair with an ottoman. Not too comfy, but it beats thinking spiders could be in bed with me!

The driveway going up to the house was quite bad. It was dirt and rocks going up a steep driveway along a side of a very tall mountain. My dad is the best drive I know though, so he was fine with driving up and down it. However, that didn’t stop my grandma from freaking out each and every time we had to use the driveway.

We went somewhere each day, so that occupied quite a bit of time. We visited my Aunt Stacy and Uncle Greg at their house one afternoon (they live near there). We went to Pigeon Forge, TN to do some shopping. We ate somewhere everyday and I didn’t always stick to my diet. I won’t be eating French fries again for a long time. There was a lot of pretty scenery and equally as much driving. Gas prices were through the roof though, and quite often we found gas stations with no gas at all!

The last day of the trip my Mom and I had the best time. We went to the casino in Cherokee, which was the first time I had ever gambled. I only played with $10 and on the cheap slot machines, but it was fun! After that we ate lunch at a restaurant at the casino. It was really good and actually cheaper than most places we had been eating at around there. Then we went gem mining. I’ve done this a few times before and I’ve always enjoyed doing it. This time though, I actually had a necklace made from a gem I mined. It is a mystic fire topaz. Really pretty!

I also did some reading while on this trip. I finished book 2 and 3 from the Harry Potter series. Yeah, I love Harry Potter and I’m 25 – so what? I got the whole set for my birthday and I’m reading them in order.

Overall, I am very happy to be back. My bed is soo much better than an oversized chair, I missed my computer and all the comforts of being “home.” This blog ended up being a bit longer than I expected, but oh well.

September 1, 2008

Hurricane Season

Growing up with constant threats of hurricanes every year, I am used to hurricanes. Florida gets hit quite often, and I lived in central Florida for most of my life. Packing up my stuff that I was allowed to fit in my bags and then evacuating with my family – possibly leaving everything else behind to get blown away. Luckily, nothing severe ever happened to our house or even the city we lived in.

In 2004, hurricanes hit Florida one after another. Remember that? I sure do. Even a seasoned hurricane Floridian was sick and tired of hurricanes after that. Sure, “hurricane parties” were fun and all – but the threat sure isn’t something to look forward to. We actually had a close call with tornadoes from Hurricane Charlie near where I lived in Orlando. The most severe hurricane that season was Hurricane Katrina. It didn’t hit Florida that hard but everyone remembers it from New Orleans’ devastation. They are still trying to recover from that hurricane.

Now, we have Hurricane Gustav that is hitting those along the Gulf today. We also have Tropical Storm Hanna (Hurricane Hanna sounds catchy and somehow that doesn’t seem like a good thing) out in the Atlantic right now. Hopefully, these hurricanes (and anymore that end up spawning out there) don’t cause devastation like some hurricanes have in the past. My thoughts and prayers go out to those in the path of these storms.