Friday, November 25, 2016

A long, long update

We left Lynchburg, VA and headed to our home base in NC.  We were more anxious to get there than normal.  Why?  Because, in late summer we had found out that Brandon and Amanda were expecting a baby!  Woot Woot.  It’s a good thing I had been practicing my “Grandma” skills with Dan’s nephews this past summer!

We spent 6 weeks at “Korky’s Campground” and, as usual, we were quite busy!

We celebrated Dan’s birthday with a lasagna dinner.  Gin and Syl drove halfway across the country to surprise him!

Gin, Syl, Amanda, "Piper Cub" and Brandon

Sara, me, Don, Kork, and Dan
Dan spent a few days down in Cedar Key working on the boat hauler he designed to haul our Gheenoe.  This will allow us to take the boat with us even when we are towing the rig.  When he got back, to Korky's Campground, he had quite the audience!

Kork’s Dad, Don, really enjoyed watching Kork and Dan load and unload it.

My sister Barbara and family friend Art came for a visit.  I FINALLY finished her Alaska quilt and presented it to her.
First look

I think she likes it!
It was the most complicated quilt I have made to date and am really pleased with the way it turned out.

We enjoyed hanging out and just chilling with everyone.
Art and Barbara

Dan and Kork

Kork and Art

Dan and I being goofy
Barbara, Art, and I had planned on going to my parents house on the coast to surprise Dad for his 84th birthday.  Despite many road closures from Hurricane Matthew, we were fortunate to still be able to make it down to the coast without incident.  Art had picked up a BUNCH of donuts for Dad…
I'm in donut heaven

Happy 84th birthday Dad

Cake and ice cream
We also helped Mom and Dad with some chores that needed to be done.
Yard crew!
It was a good visit albeit a quick one!

On the way back to Korky’s Campground, we dropped Art off at the airport as he needed to get back to work.  Barbara and I had signed up to be “day volunteers” with Samaritans Purse to help the flood victims in Eastern North Carolina.  Hurricane Matthew had wrecked havoc.  We spent 2 days doing some of the most physically challenging work I think I have ever done.  We tore out sheetrock, wet insulation, baseboards and flooring.  We moved furniture and personal belongings that had been ruined by the flood waters.  We salvaged what we could…but it was minimal for the most part.  We worked alongside other volunteers as well as the homeowners.  One of the volunteers was also a homeowner whose home was totally destroyed.  She worked on other people’s houses before her own.  She was such an inspiration.    .  
Debris was carried out to the curb; FEMA would pick it up later

Demolishing a bathroom

Our work crew one day
Despite the hard manual labor, it was a very rewarding experience for me and am glad I got to do it with Barbara.

Brandon and Amanda hosted a gender reveal party at their house.  Everyone was excited to find out the sex of the baby.

Cute decorations

Amanda is so creative

Yummy cupcakes
Amanda had us wear our choice of pink or blue clothespins before the big reveal.
Ashleigh guessed girl

Dan guessed boy

Amanda's Dad guessed girl

Amanda's Mom guessed girl; her husband guessed boy.

I had guessed girl!

We played a few fun games and then it was time for the big reveal.  To find out the sex of the baby, we had to get to the center of the cupcakes that Amanda made.
Get ready, get set...reveal!

It's a BOY!  

Smiles all around - happy people everywhere!

Thumbs up!  Yippee!  Yay!

We were able to "facetime" the great grandparents!

Happy happy joy joy!

Aunt Ashleigh is all smiles

The thrilled parents surround by lots of love
Grandmas-to-be with parents-to-be
Brandon, Aunt Ashleigh and Amanda

These two are going to be great parents!
Needless to say, we are all so excited and can‘t wait to meet Bennett in March!

Part 2 of the long, long update coming soon!


  1. Time sure does fly by! I like Barbara's Alaskan quilt. Truly one of a kind. Dan's boat hauler is cool to see in action and it's also a one of a kind.
    Such a creative gender reveal party. Baby Bennett is going to be so loved and a wee bit spoiled, me thinks.

  2. sure did have a lot going on as you traveled back to Cedar Key!!! All of it look like so much fun. So happy for Amanda and Brandon and GRANDMA...your gonna love that role:o))

  3. Congratulations Grandma!! Happy for all!

  4. Yay!! So much to fun to read your update:) Can't wait to see y'all again in March!