31. March 2012 · Comments Off on Welcome to the New Home of Ground Control to Major Mom! · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags:

Hello!  I’m slowly, but surely, migrating my blog from the Blogger home it’s had since December 2007 to its new home here at my personal domain.  Dave’s been using this domain for quite some time.

Thanks to GeekMom, I’ve been getting pretty comfortable with WordPress and there are some blogging features I’d like to use, and those features haven’t been available via Blogger.

It’ll be a slow process, migrating everything — for now, things will continue to come to you from Blogger, and by the time I’m done, you won’t even need to learn a new URL…Blogger will redirect you for me!

I “won” this Keurig Elite from the HSC Charity Auction last fall.

Like millions of other Americans, we have become Keurig customers.  It’s like a revolution in coffee…Keurigs give you a “perfect” cup of coffee with very little work.  The American dream, right?

We got our first Keurig, a “Mini“, just before we moved from Nebraska to Florida in fall 2010.  After the movers took our regular coffee pot, it was a nice way to keep having our coffee in the morning.  It’s small and we didn’t have to keep coffee grounds on hand, just a box (or two) of K-Cups and some disposable coffee cups. That one ended up in Dave’s office.  We like how it turns itself off after the cup of coffee brews.  We get a bit paranoid about coffee pots being left on.

This past fall we got one for the home.  It’s been great.  When you register your machine with Keurig, you get coupons for free K-Cups.  BOGO for 2 boxes of 48 K-Cups.  This was a great deal after Christmas when the Starbucks K-Cups became available online.

K-Cup-brewed coffee is delicious and perfect every time.  No doubt there.

My conundrum: K-Cups are very wasteful and are expensive.  After all, traditional coffee pots brew through compostable coffee filters and then you can go on to compost the spent coffee grounds. More »

30. March 2012 · Comments Off on Alabama Discoveries 3: USS Alabama Battleship “Overnight Adventure” in Mobile · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , ,
You can get an idea of how BIG the guns are on this ship.

This past weekend the boys had the opportunity to camp out on the USS Alabama battleship at its museum location in Mobile Bay.  This is something the organization does for Scout groups (and other groups) most weekends.

The USS Alabama trip is truly one of the highlights of the scout year for my boys’ pack.  I was the coordinator for the trip this year, even though females aren’t allowed to remain on the ship if it’s a male-booking.  Everything went surprisingly well; the kids and male chaperones seemed to have a great time!

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26. March 2012 · Comments Off on It’s Baseball Season!!! · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , ,

It’s baseball season here — the boys are both in Navarre Youth baseball this year, and they got their uniforms and had their first games this past weekend.

Enjoy some pictures!!!!

At practice, Timmy is got some time as a catcher.
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24. March 2012 · Comments Off on The Hunger Games Movie…The Odds are Definitely in its Favor · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , ,
This was at the Rave theater near Cordova Mall in Pensacola.  Someone had a good time making this out of posters.

Today I did something very anti-social.  I went BY MYSELF to a movie.  I can’t remember the last time I did that.  I just didn’t feel like coordinating with anyone else.  I knew I could go on Friday while the kids were at school and I didn’t want anyone to stop me.

I had been drooling to see The Hunger Games movie for about a year.  Probably because I read the trilogy about a year ago.  For the past 12 months, I discussed with the GeekMoms on our message board every time photos from the film shoot, posters and trailers were publicized.

The excitement was pretty palpable by the time I bought my ticket this morning at a theater in Pensacola.  I had to haul out that far because that was the only place in 50 miles offering showings before noon. More »

22. March 2012 · Comments Off on Spring Break Road Trip 2012, Part 3: Visiting Old Friends, Meeting New Friends!!! · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , , ,

One of the things I’m guilty of is trying to balance visiting friends with every trip we take back to the Northeast.  You know who you are!  There are many of you I haven’t been able to see in YEARS because we’re trying to see other friends.

Now that I’m a GeekMom, there are a dozen+ ladies I want to meet on my travels.  I can’t wait to meet more of you!  I’ll be in the D.C. area (again) and Long Island by the end of the year….

On this trip, we got to meet up with old friends from Nebraska, North Carolina, and we got to meet up with new GeekMom/GeekDad friends.

While we were in WV, we drove out to Centreville, VA and met some friends for dinner.

Poor Timmy was sick so he stayed at my parents while the rest of us met the Folzes near Washington,  D.C.  We were neighbors in Nebraska and you might remember these boys from Cub Scout pictures and from our trip to the Ashfall Fossil Beds in summer 2010.  The kids picked up right where they left off — and we grown-ups had a great time catching up.  Dave had so many questions for Nick about his Pentagon commute.

We met up with Don, Maryann, Joey and Johnny at a BBQ restaurant in Durham.  We are so grateful that they made the drive — on a school night! — out to see us!

Maryann looked FANTASTIC!!!  I felt so underdressed next to her 🙂
Maryann took this nice picture of all four boys actually sitting still!

The following day, I headed over to Southpoint Mall in Durham to pick up a long-awaited iPhone 4S (whoo hoo!) and we had a chance to meet up with our friends the Warlicks for lunch in the food court.

Strike a pose!

I had taken about 50 pictures of the boys playing at this fountain with my new phone. But then I had some syncing problems when I first plugged it in…I lost those pictures.  But Wendy sent me everything she had on her camera, thanks!

I was so excited to finally get to meet a fellow GeekMom author in person! We had an invitation to visit one of the GeekMom editors, Natania Barron and her husband, GeekDad writer Michael Harrison. For Natania, Michael and me, it was like old friends seeing each other after a long while, since we talk so much via Facebook, Twitter and our GeekMom discussion boards. But for Dave, he was getting to meet them and talk to them for the first time. We had a fun time enjoying Greek food for dinner — Natania made it all! — and the kids enjoyed a game of Zombie Dice with Michael.

22. March 2012 · Comments Off on Spring Break Road Trip 2012, Part 2: North Carolina · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , ,

This picture was taken minutes before we headed to our truck and started our drive home.

After hooking up the lawn mower to our truck in WV, we headed back down I-81 and U.S. 29 towards my sister’s house in central North Carolina.  I blew through her place — stopping overnight in each direction — driving to and from NY last summer, but this time we get to spend a few days in the area…and this was Dave’s first trip back since we moved away in July 2008.

My sister and I always have great times when we get together.  We often stay up late and talk talk talk until we’re falling asleep on each other!  We discuss books, movies and music and catch up on gossip.  I didn’t take any pictures, we sat at her kitchen table and folded origami cranes while we talked.

The kids take off like a pack of wolves and only need grownups’ attention when they’re hungry or hurt.  It’s actually rather relaxing, believe it or not.

My dear sister made us a cake!

We enjoyed a picnic lunch at a new park in Hillsborough.  Several of us took runs around the 2/3-mile-long track that circles the park.

The little ones played on the playground.


Running, complete with iPod!

Dave liked this park: check out the view he had of this NC Amtrak train!  He on the small hill on the right side of this picture, also photographing it.

Wouldn’t you know it — we had scooters and helmets in the truck!  The kids took turns riding around.

Time for an iPod break.


My sister’s boys have a trampoline on their property. My boys couldn’t get enough of it!

My sister kept the boys while Dave and I had a morning to ourselves to browse Trader Joe’s and Southern Season in Chapel Hill.  Money was spent.

Southern Season: These are just jams and jellies!

Dave was enjoying the fun wine section.

Cake decorating supplies!!!!  I bought some non-pareil cows.  I don’t have immediate plans to make a cow-themed cake, but you never know….
I’ve taken enough pictures of Trader Joe’s — I feel like a dork when I do it.  But I did photograph this beer that we used to get.  We elected not to attempt taking alcohol across NC/SC/GA/AL/FL.

Before we hit the road on Saturday for a partial drive home, we enjoyed watching my oldest nephew’s soccer game in Mebane.

One more post is forthcoming about last week — all the other friends we had a chance to see on this trip!  Stay tuned!

22. March 2012 · Comments Off on Spring Break Road Trip 2012, Part 1: West Virginia and a Circus · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , ,

Last week was the kids’ Spring Break.  The family headed up to West Virginia to visit my parents, thanks to their offer for us to take their riding lawn mower.  My Dad bought it 1-2 years ago, but they don’t use it much.  I guess they felt sorry for us with our larger-than-necessary lawn…which I discussed last year when I measured how many miles I had walked to cut my lawn with our 22″ wide mower.

We drove a VERY long day on Saturday.  Thanks to some Choice Hotel loyalty points, we got a free hotel room in Roanoke and were at my parents by Sunday at lunchtime.

My parents had arranged a nice surprise for the boys: a trip to the circus!

This is a circus that set up in a gymnasium.  Small, but for the kids, it was a lot of fun!

The Walker Brothers Circus travels around the eastern United States.  It’s a very small operation, with the ringmaster taking our tickets at the front door, and the acrobats selling concessions when they aren’t actively performing.  The entire event is very small, unlike the larger Ringling Brothers circuses, so there were several chances to personally interact with the performers.

Ever see those free tickets at local grocery stores?  That’s the type of circus we went to.

The boys enjoyed the bouncy house before the circus, and the assorted acts.  My parents got them cotton candy and toy light sabers.

Waiting for the show to start.
He loves cotton candy!

The ringleader blew fireballs!

This is Gianni — balancing on tubes. 

A hula hoop act.

I was having a hard time with the camera from the distance we were sitting, so I stopped after this point.

The rest of our visit, we relaxed and hung out.  Dave and Timmy went to the Baltimore area to visit one of Dave’s friends’ train stores, and he met a friend for lunch.  Jacob and I spent a day shopping with my Mom, which was fun.  Jacob desperately needed some new running shoes, so he was stuck with us girls for the day.

We also drove out to the Washington, D.C. suburbs to visit some friends for dinner, but that’s for another post.

Timmy and my parents all got sick during our visit.  That was pretty icky, unfortunately.

Mid-week, we loaded my parents’ lawn mower on a U-Haul trailer and made the drive down to North Carolina, where we visited with my sister.

Parked at a Cracker Barrel on the way down to central NC.