Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Trip to Boston

We had a very hectic spring and although we have been spending time together as a family we have not had much one-on-one time and James, especially, has been wanting some alone time with me lately. So James and I took the train into Boston together just to explore, no plans, no museums. We picked up a muffin, drink and sat on the train and talked all the way into Boston. We discussed such topics as why they don’t make square Umbrellas, why the handles are shaped like a “J”…..tried to reason why people put canopies over their Beds and the thought behind giving the name Strawberries since they are not made out of straw. Hmmm…I wasn’t able to provide as much insight as James, or I, expected. When we arrived in south station I threw James on my shoulders and as we opened the doors to leave South Station the city just overpowered our senses with its smell, sights and sounds. I could feel James tense up and hold on tight as we stepped out into traffic. We started walking towards the center of the city. We stopped for awhile and split a soft pretzel and threw pieces to the pigeons which James found very amusing. When we passed thru Faneuil hall they were having a festival of sorts with jugglers, magicians and balloon making spread around the market place, so we spent most of the day enjoying the activities. James picked out a nice spot, under an umbrella, to have lunch. After a few hours I could see that James was getting tired so we headed back to the train station via the harbor so that we could look at all the boats. The trains were very crowded on the way home and James jumped on my lap and was very quiet as everyone boarded the train. Just as the train was pulling out James said to me “If you close your eyes while passing thru a tunnel then you won’t know you are in a tunnel”. I said thank you and James was asleep before we left the city.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Flower Show!

It has been awhile, I have been taking notes but have not updated the blog… I will try to catch up chronologically. June 27,2008

As many of us know Daniel has been living and breathing flowers. We spend hours, to Daniels insistence, looking different flowers up on the web to find out if they are perennials or annuals, where they originated and the different colors they come in. Our trips to Home Depot always need to end up with us viewing the latest selection of flora available on the way out. During a search this spring I came across the annual Newport Flower Show and decided to get tickets for Daniel and I.
I signed up Daniel for a flower arranging contest which was being held during the time we would be there in case Daniel had an interest. When we arrived we really stood out from the rest of the crowd because the majority of the people there were older woman, with some accompanied by their husbands (who didn’t seem too overly thrilled to be there). The Flower show was held at Rosecliff which was one of the mansions used in movies like the “Great Gatsby” and “Amistad”.
I had never been to the mansions in Newport before so it was interesting on that level for me. The initial tour took us thru the main building and then we emerged out onto the back lawn where we signed in for the events. They supplied us with safari hats and a list for our scavenger hunt.
The hunt was nice because it took us around the entire property and identified many of the plants and flowers for us that we did not know the names of originally. I was really struck by the size of the trees on the property… English Planter tree and European Beech trees which were so big that if they were in my yard there would be no place for our house, they must have each covered a ¼ acre.
We split a very expensive chicken sandwich "box lunch", sat on the cliff overlooking the ocean and then proceeded to the children’s tent for the flower arranging. I had thought that there was a chance Daniel would not want to get involved but as he was greeted he took to it like a fish to water. For the next hour and a half we hardly spoke.
They had a history lesson on flowers and how they are categorized into families etc. followed by a short demonstration on flower arrangement. Daniel was fixated the entire time and even asked and answered questions!! I was surprised because he is usually not that outgoing with people he doesn’t know. I just stayed in the back ground and took some pictures.

Afterwards we went for a walk and when we got back the judges had awarded Daniel the first place prize (for the “Happiest” arrangement). It was a very successful day and on the way out Daniel spotted a Day Lilly he really liked and it wasn’t all that expensive so we bought it and carried it back with us on the shuttle bus. It is called the “Plum perfect Day lilly” and looks very nice in our front garden.