Wednesday, October 17, 2012

A Day at the Zoo

My in-laws came to visit from Michigan for Emily's birthday and one of the things they wanted to do was take her to the zoo. I did a search and the closest zoo was in Greenville, so that is were we went Monday morning.

Emily loves animals so we knew that the zoo would be fun for her. The Greenville zoo isn't super big so we were able to see it all in a couple of hours. The first animal and the last animal we saw was the elephant. The elephant was not facing us so we got a good view of his butt. Emily kept making stinky elephant butt jokes the whole day. We got a little better view on the way out, but didn't get to see her straight on.

They had a lot of neat animals from snakes to lizards to birds to monkeys to the very pregnant giraffe. Emily liked the monkeys the best because she thought they were funny!

Here are some pictures from our day at the zoo!


Daddy and Emily looking at fishies

The zoo had a bunch of Halloween decorations up

Emily with her grandparents

Emily loves the zoo!

Pregnant giraffe!

She loved the playground they had!

Monkey! Emily said he was in time out
because he was facing away from the other monkeys.

Big cheetahs!

Mommy gets a picture with the birthday girl

"Look mom, a goat!"


One last pose before we left
Elephant butt!

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Costume Party

I love Halloween so I was thrilled when my daughter was born in October. For the last few years, we had been doing park playdates, but that didn't turn out so well last year. So when I asked Emily what kind of party she wanted this year, I was so excited when she requested a costume/Halloween themed party.

Since we live in NC, the weather is usually okay for an outdoor party. We got Emily a big swingset over the summer and our yard is plenty big, so the party was going to be at our house.

Emily started preschool this year so we invited the kids in her class as well as a few other people. My in-laws drove down from Michigan to make the party complete. As the day dawn, it looked like rain and actually did rain a little so we set up the food table in our carport. I also brought out some toys for the kids to play with in case of rain.

The party started at 2 pm and it wasn't too long before the first kids starting arriving. It was sprinkling so they started playing in the carport. But once most of the guests had arrived, Emily wanted to show her friend her swing set so off to the backyard they went.

Emily was dressed as Snow White and one of her friends also came as Snow White. I also was Snow but we didn't get any pictures of me. All the kids were in costume which was very adorable. We let the kids play for a while and then we had food.

I have several Halloween themed cookie cutters, one that is in the shape of a bat. So Todd used the cookie cutter to make hamburger patties in the shape of bats. He called them bat sliders. We also had veggies, fruit and lemonade and even ice cubes in the shape of pumpkins and skulls.

Emily loved the Halloween pinatas at Walmart so we got her one for her birthday. She picked out the ghost and we gave each of the kids the change to break open the pinata. The kids didn't make a dent into it, so my husband tried. He overestimated his strength and cracked it open with one swing. Thankfully it didn't hit anyone when it fell and the kids had fun filling their bags up with candy.

Once everyone ate and we cracked open the pinata, we got the cake out and sang 'Happy Birthday'. The cake had one of Emily's favorite princesses, Tiana, on it. It was very colorful and pretty yummy.

It was then time for presents and Emily got some help unwrapping them. She got lots of lovely things but her favorite was the Disney Princess Little People Castle from her aunt and uncle.

The party broke up at the point but Emily played a while with the kids that could stick around. She declared it was the best birthday party ever and I think it turned out pretty well!

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Thursday, October 4, 2012

Dragon*Con 2012 - Friday

Usually my husband and I head down to Atlanta early on the Thursday before Dragon*Con so we can get our badges. Usually the badge line takes several hours to go through and that way we weren't missing any of the con.

But this year, I had just started a new job a few weeks before so I had to work until 5:30 that Thursday. Thankfully, I now work from home so we could leave as soon as I got off work. It was about 5 pm when my boss let me go and we were able to get on the road to Atlanta.

Thursday was just the drive down to my aunt and uncle's house. We got to their house around 9 pm which didn't leave us any time to get downtown. So it was early to bed since my husband and I wanted to get down to the con early.

Now I had heard many things that badge pickup was streamlined, but my husband was pretty pessimistic about it. He still thought we were going to be in line for hours. We managed to get down to the con around 9 am and then we waited for a whole five minutes to get our badges. It took us longer to walk through the queues than it did to actually get our badges.

This gave us quite a bit of time before my panel. We headed to the Hilton to see if there was any autographs. The Celebrity Authentics line was long but we got in it so Todd could get a ticket to get Sebastian Roche's autograph.

From there, we met up with my friend Nicole. We went to the food court to have some breakfast. We chatted and people watched until it was about a half hour before the "Are You A Geek Parent" Panel.

I had worked with th Kaleidoscope track folks for months to put together this panel with some of my fellow GeekMom authors. Author and geeky dad Bryan Young also sat on the panel. When we got to the Kaleidoscope track room, the room was about half full. We actually started the panel a little early because the room was full.

My lovely husband took video of the panel until my memory was totally filled up. He left at that point to head back to the Walk of Fame. He told me later that there were about 10 people outside, waiting to see if they could get into the pane.

The big highlight of the panel was being able to meet GeekMom Ruth and GeekMom Patricia in person. And it was just a really fun panel to be involved with. Afterwards, we got a picture of the three GeekMoms, then I had a rush off.

I walked as fast as I could to the Sheraton to get in line for The Guild panel. The line was out of the hotel and wrapped around the building. It was very hot but thankfully I had stuck my Kaylee parasol in my bag. It was my original parasol that I painted and it is starting to fall apart. Thankfully it still opened and make it a little cooler while standing in line.

Even though the line was long, I made it into the panel. It was the first time the entire cast of The Guild  had come to Dragon*Con. It was a really great panel, but I left earlier so I could meet Todd at the walk of fame.

I didn't get as many autographs as I did in years past. But I got the entire cast of the Guild, Adam Baldwn (finally!!) and Katee Sackoff. Todd got several others, like John Rhys-Davies, so we have lots of new additions for our wall of fame.

I thought that the dealer'r room closed at 5, but my dear husband told me that it was open until 7 and that he also knew were the BPAL booth was.

Slight tangent here. I've been a fan of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab or BPAL since 2004. The owners of the Lab, Beth and her husband Ted, have been active on the fan forum so I've known them online for 8 years. But since they are located in CA, I never got to meet them in person. So I was really excited to finally meet them.

Todd showed me right were the booth was then headed back to the walk of fame. I geeked out at the BPAL, introduced myself to Beth, got a hug and got to smell the Halloween scents which were so lovely. It was great!

By the time I was done at the BPAL booth, I had missed the start of the next panel I was going to so I went to the food court for some food. Todd had been at wrestling but he wasn't too into it so we headed back to my aunt and uncle's house.

Next up, Dragon*Con 2012 - Saturday!

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