Friday, July 24, 2009

We're on the move!

It's gonna be a good weekend!

Tomorrow we go and fetch the keys to our house............. woohoo00!! Then we can go shopping for some bedding and odds and ends. And over the course of the weekend we will trek our stuff over to the house from the apartment that has been our abode since we landed on the 16th March 2009.

Then Monday our container arrives from South Africa! Such Joy!!
The best part of all is the fact that the shipping company moves everything in for us, exactly where we want it, and unpacks, how great is that!
God's timing couldn't have been more perfect on this one....the container was supposed to arrive only on August 3rd, which meant we would have to do some "roughing it" in the house till all our furniture came. But that ............. is no longer the case!!

I have never looked forward to a move before. And I've done my fair share of moving...yes

We still have to connect our phone and internet lines, but hopefully I will still be able to blog, and keep you all up to date on the goings-on.......

"When the boxes are gone
And we've cleaned up the mess
We'll make a home of the house
That was just an address."
Jon Bratton

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Fishing, fairs and fun!

Felt the need to share some more Vermont stories with y'all.

The kids were kept very busy indeed, what with the evening walks with Tux the family dog, and some interesting Peanut Butter Play dough!!

And one morning they went fishing at one of the scenic lakes there. Of course the two Mom's were the ones who ended up hooking the slimy, humongous night crawler worms onto the hooks....not for the fainthearted I can assure you. Right there and then I discovered that I could never do the whole 'Survivor'-eating-gross-bugs thing!! Never, I tell you!!
The fish prevailed however, and had a good meal on us...... managing to chomp down those night-crawlers like nobodies business! We walked away empty handed, but at peace nonetheless.

Vergennes was holding a fair celebrating 400 years, and an assortment of interesting characters were there. Local townsfolk who dressed up in character and knew all about the person they were 'playing', you can basically ask them anything about their character, and they will be able to answer you. Fascinating.

Here are a few of them.....

And then, the kids played of course! Slides and swings and tyres, you name it! There was a wonderful park nearby, where we let them all loose for an hour or so. I had great fun just taking photos of them all.

Thank you Atherton Family for a memorable trip!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

To the Green Mountain State...and back!!

Hello again friends.

We are back from our trip to Vermont with happy smiles, overweight luggage and fond memories! It was a great trip, and was wonderful catching up with my friend, who is now a contented wife with a husband and 3 sweet children.

She really went out of her way taking us to all the sights and helped us to taste (literally) the wonders in Vermont. Strawberry picking on Friday.....I have never seen so many strawberries in one kitchen when we arrived back home!! And thus the need for strawberry jam making on Saturday!!

Then it was off to the maple syrup farm, for some yummy maple syrup creemies (aka ice creams), and we topped the evening off with our first baseball game. We all enjoyed that, the kids especially loved the local teams mascot, "Skip". It was really a wonderful way to experience a piece of America!

So, it was indeed a busy time. And there are many photos of the trip, so I have made a slide show next to this on the right with some more of the photos for you all to check out. You can click on the photos to enlarge.

Vermont is a beautiful state, very green and lush in the summer months, although I have learnt there are 5 seasons there. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter & Mud season!! I would love to see it in Winter, and even Fall with the glorious reds, browns and rusts. Hopefully, we will be back there soon.

I will keep this post short, and add some more for y'all tomorrow....enjoy the pics of the scenery around Northfield, where we were staying!

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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Off to Vermont....see you on the 21st July!!!

Yeah, that's right....the kids and I are on our way to Vermont excited!!
So I just wanted to let y'all know that I might not be able to post on my blog until the 21st July. If I can I will, but don't all hide away, and not come back, thinking I have deserted you for ever!

Do come back and check now and then to see if there is any latest news!

In the meantime, I will love and leave you with a really cute video, my friends Lee n' Jackie, waaaaay down in New Zealand sent it to me a few days ago, and it's really fun, and sums up how the kids and I are feeling right now............we're going to Vermont......woohoo!!

We'll be back!!!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The 411 on Vermont

Well, the kids and I are off to Vermont on Thursday for 12 days...woohoo!! Andy is in Germany during that time, on business, and yes...he would much rather be with us!

In honour of our upcoming trip I have decided to give y'all the 411 on Vermont (had to do some research myself anyway...)
As those of you who have been following this blog know, I am a fan of interesting facts, and useless snippets of information about places. Therefore, I didn't want to disappoint you all, by not giving you some more of these nuggets of information. Which I know you all can't wait to read, and are sitting on the edge of your computer chair in anticipation , *wink*

So here goes.....

1. Vermont is 160 miles long and 80 miles wide.
2. Vermont is the second smallest state in population.
3. Vermont has the least amount of violent crimes out of all 50 states.
4. The capital of Vermont is Montpelier.
5. Montpelier is the smallest state capital in the U.S.
6. Montpelier is the only state capital without a McDonalds.
7. More people live in a rural setting in Vermont than in an urban setting.
8. Rudyard Kipling, living in Vermont in the 1890's invented the game of snow golf.
9. In 1846, the first postage stamp in America is printed in Brattleboro, Vermont.
10. The Green Mountains, one of the oldest mountain ranges in the world, run up the center of the state. In fact, the state’s name is derived from it: Ver, from the French word for green, vert; and -mont from mountain.
11. Ben & Jerry's Ice cream gives their ice cream waste to local farmers who feed it to their hogs. The hogs seem to like every flavor except Mint Oreo!
12. In 1886, Ebenezer J. Ormsbee and Levi K. Fuller ran for Governor and Lieutenant Governor of Vermont. Each were one-armed amputees. Their campaign slogan was "two good arms between the two of us."
13. Until 1996, VT was the only state without a Wal-Mart.
14. Three quarters of Vermont is covered with forest, including ash, beech, birch, maple, hickory, oak, pine and spruce trees.
15. Champ is a legendary sea creature believed to live in Lake Champlain. Champ might be a reptile, fish, or mammal, or just an old myth or story passed down through the centuries. There have been over 300 Champ sightings recorded: the first as early as 1819, and most recently in 1995.

Well, there you have it, my expounded list of all things Vermont!! Or "The Green Mountain State", as it is also called.

Never let it be said you learn nothing from reading this blog!!

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Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th July....our first!

We had a tiring but lovely day out in the Woodlands yesterday. Festivities started around 6pm, and we braved the intense heat by taking the kids to Waterway Square to cool off in the interactive water park. There were bands and inflatables, watermelon and hot dog eating competitions, (not at the same time, mind you..) and numerous other activities.

We witnessed again the intense patriotism of the American people. Red, white and blue everywhere, on people's balconies, in flags, on hats, and whole families from Grandpa to baby wore colour co-ordinated outfits fitting in with the theme.

We then hunted for the perfect spot from which to view the 20 minute fireworks display. We found a piece of lawn and laid down our blankets and enjoyed the rest! The temperature was cooling a little, and a wonderful breeze had started to blow, which really helped! The sun went down around 9pm, and about 9:30 the fireworks started. It was really loud, but really beautiful! The kids had never seen a fireworks display like this before, so after their initial shock at the loud bangs going on around them, they were soon squealing in delight!

I tried my best to get some good shots, but nothing can do the real thing justice, it's was a great show, and the finale erupted in about a minute of non-stop continuous multiple rounds of fireworks illuminating the heavens. And the crowds and crowds of people broke out into applause at the end. A truly memorable evening.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Kevin the chicken catcher from Kentucky

America's Got TalentImage via Wikipedia

It's the season for America's Got Talent here again, and as usual there are the good, the not so good, and the truly incredible!

We saw our first episode on Tuesday evening, and were delighted to watch a man by the name of Kevin Skinner. He introduces himself as an ex-chicken catcher from Kentucky. What fascinated me about him was his very strong accent....and his very casual, and laid back attitude to the whole business. Also really interesting was the reactions from the judges and audience. You could guess what was going on in their minds, before he even started to sing!

Yeah, I suppose this smacks of Susan Boyle from Britain's Got Talent, but hey....I'm a sucker for the underdog rising up, and showing everyone there's more to them than meets the eye!!

And I'm no big fan of country music, and definitely no expert, but I thought this guy was really good! Take a look, and decide for yourself..................

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


The whole family has been busy trying out the local foods since we arrived here, and sweets of course, are on top of the list. Chocolate is definitely better in South Africa, and the UK. There is NOTHING like Cadbury's chocolate. I have yet to find anything that can compare, even remotely with a Kit-Kat, or Peppermint Crisp. Many sweets here have Peanut Butter in them, and a lot of chocolate bars are made by Hershey's (no, not related!). And they all pale in comparison!

Just today however, the kids have found some sweets that they really love, and climbed into them with great gusto! OK....I'll admit it.....I did too.....don't hold it against me!

I decided to mark the occasion by taking some photos.......because there's just NO WAY anyone can eat these sweets on the sly...the evidence was clearly visible......

These little gems are 'Gushers'.....and they are soft jelly-like sweets, with juicy, runny....gushy...centres!! They literally burst in your mouth...and if you're not careful, all over your suede lounge suite and beige carpets!!!

They were definitely a hit in the Hersey household today!!