Friday, March 25, 2011
Excited to be on a ferry
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
He had the party on Saturday night before his actual birthday on Sunday. On Sunday he opened gifts from family and played with all his new stuff. He chose to go to our favorite Mexican restaurant for dinner.
Monday, March 21, 2011
One day we visited Cade's Cove, an old settlement in a farming valley in the park. There are several old log buildings still standing. It was quite cold that day but we saw herds of deer and numerous old buildings, a working original mill and other cool things.
On the last day it was quite warm and we hiked 4.5 miles round trip to see a 90 foot waterfall. It was a "moderate difficulty" hike but with 5 kids it was even more interesting..."my legs are tired", "I'm thirsty", "carry me", "how much farther". The kids sure were getting tired of the four adults whining like that! :)
The weather was nice most days. For about half a day we had some rain so we decided to make that a "town" day and went to breakfast at one of the 7,000 pancake houses, then visited the aquarium. After that the boys went to Ripley's celebrity car museum and the girls went to Ripley's Believe it or Not Museum. We got exotic beef jerky and some fudgy ice cream.
Every night we had a campfire and enjoyed s'mores. We experimented with coconut marshmallows and the super jumbo sized marshmallows. The kids played flashlight tag in the nearly empty campground and stayed up WAAAYYY past bedtime every night. One night we drove in to Pigeon Forge and went to dinner at the Dixie Stampede. This is a dinner show where you cheer for the North or the South and there are horses and trick riders and audience participation contests, etc. You eat with your hands and everyone gets the same thing, a whole chicken, pork steak, corn on the cob, soup, biscuit. Basically it is like the redneck version of Medieval Times.
We are back home now. I have done about 10 loads of laundry but haven't folded any of it! Camping is messy business...and everything is smoky. The kids have another whole week of Spring Break but we are just hanging around the house. The weather is wonderful right now but it is supposed to cool off considerably and begin raining later this week.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
The next morning I got home from dropping the kids at school and the gym to find that our recycling dumpster in the alley behind our house was now resting on our fence. The garbage truck apparently dropped the dumpster off the truck while emptying it. It landed on our fence and crushed the chainlink and the support poles. It was still resting on one pointy corner of the dumpster, leaning up against our fence! WHAT??!! He just drove away and left it like that!! I took pictures and called the city refuse department to file a claim. They said they had until March 2nd to contact me (it was Feb 24). That day after school we went straight to horseback riding. After Bumblebee sat in the car with me for an hour and got out in the rain once to pee in the bushes, Double A got back in the car and said it smelled like pee. Bumblebee then admitted he had peed his pants at school. Upon questioning he was sketchy on details but I think he peed during recess and then never told his teachers or did anything about it. Bumblebee cried and asked me not to tell his dad. I told him we did not work like that. I asked what we were supposed to do with him and he said "ground me." Well, we did that yesterday and it obviously did not work. When Husband #1 came home he was very angry and took Bumblebee in his room and laid down the law. Bumblebee tried to lie to him and say he peed his pants at horseback riding because it was raining and he could not go pee. That just got him in even more trouble. The result is he has no tv for a week and no playdates, no birthday parties and no more basketball for two weeks. We have designed a schedule for him at school to take trips to the bathroom and we are 5 days in and so far so good.
Luckily they called me Friday at 4:40pm to get some more details about the dumpster incident (instead of March 2). I explained there was a bit of a safety issue with the precariousness of the dumpster and he said everyone had left for the weekend and there was nothing that could be done. He said they would send a letter in 5 business days and then contact me to come out and do the investigation. I got the letter Tuesday March 1 and it basically just said they got the claim. It also said that state law puts limited liability on the city refuse department, blah, blah, blah. Well, I received another call today from the investigator. He had two short questions and then promptly said "that's all I needed" and hung up. I am not sure where we are now. I do know the guy pulled the dumpster off my fence and it is now usable again. My fence is still crushed.
So, that was just part of my week! What have you been busy doing these days?