Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Some Arkansas Pictures

Below are a few of the 100 pictures I took over the weekend documenting all of the memories that were made. Look for the full set on my Flickr site soon!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The First Delay

The First Delay

So far, a storm in Minneapolis has delayed our departure from little rock. What will happen in Memphis?

Tearful Goodbye

Well the time has come for us to say goodbye to our family and hope that we can see each other sooner than the last time we separated. As we left the Tanner's house the overwhelming message was that I was lucky to have found Lauren (which I already knew) and that they wanted to be kept abreast of any developments (which I will). I was happy to see everyone welcome her as much as they welcomed me. If I have come away with anything from this trip, it is that no matter how much time passes, and how much distance separates you, your family is your family and they will welcome you and love you no matter what.

So, as Hot Springs Village fades away in the background I promise you all that we will do a better job staying in touch and make an effort to get together with everyone again soon. And to my grandmother, I wish you a happy 95th birthday and hope that I was lucky enough to inherit your genes. If I am even half as sharp and active as you are, and live the life that you have led, I will be truly blessed.

Now, if we can just get back to DC with the frozen mix affecting the area as I type this. If not, I might have some time in Memphis to upload some photos on a high speed connection. We shall see...

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Party Success!

Party Success!

Grandma's party at her home, at lakeshore, was quite the success! All of grandma's friends at the home joined the Clark clan for cake and punch and my aunt gracie on the piano. The crowd was so heavy that my aunt Linda and I could barely keep up with the punch serving.

I think the biggest challenge of this weekend will be deciding what pictures to post of the hundred I have taken. I imagine most of them will sit in a folder for memories, but I am happy to have so many of my family. This has been a weekend to remember and for once, I am documenting it appropriately.

Tonight, the festivities include dinner, and some sort of game or games. The weather has also cooperated as well as the storms appear to have moved off and the sun is now out!

No Internet!

Sadly, with as remote as Hot Springs Village is from Little Rock there is hardly a signal for the Verizon air card, and none of the neighbors have a connection for us to tap into. So, that means no pictures until tomorrow.

On another note, the weather down here is ferocious with the entire area under a tornado watch until later this afternoon. The rain has been coming down in buckets since the wee hours of the night which made sleep difficult.

Last night was a lot of fun reuniting with family that I had not seen in 13 years and others where only 5 years has passed. It seems sad that it has been so long, but it was nice to see that despite the passing time, the feeling of family is still very strong. AND, at 95, my grandmother is still as sharp as a tack which should make her reception today that much more fun!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Aftermath

Sadly, it never amounts to much around here. Without fail, talk of inches and massive amounts of snow end up with either rain, sleet, or freezing rain. In this instance, what was discussed as potentially "feet" of snow amounted to 4 inches of sleet. I will have to take some pictures so that those of you outside of the area can see what I'm talking about (though now it just looks like a frozen mess), but it is all very unimpressive.

Things I have learned though:

  1. Driving on fresh sleet is like driving on sand, except colder
  2. If you don't move your car while it is soft, it WILL ice the car in (right Lauren?)
  3. I apparently live on an important street because it was plowed pretty quickly
  4. Steve and Aurene do not live on as important of a street since it has not been plowed yet
  5. The City of Alexandria is pretty bad ass when it comes to school closings... In the 5+ years that I have lived in the area, I have seen them close maybe a handful of times. They did close yesterday, but while everyone else was closed today, they opened 2 hours late.
  6. Plowing on interstates leads to blocked on ramps and off ramps which equal bad news for everyone involved.
  7. BMWs do NOT do very well in the snow. I passed three of them yesterday on I-270 heading into work that were stuck trying to get on to the highway (see #6)
  8. I do not have the appropriate tools to deal with ice on our driveway (see impact of #8 on #2)
  9. If someone suggests using kitty litter to address #2 one more time, I will explode. I do not have a cat! Who has kitty litter handy if they do not have a cat?!?

Anyway, with the passage of the storm, it has now gotten pretty darn cold outside. Should make for a fun time trying to rectify #2 this evening. :)

Monday, February 12, 2007

Calm Before the Storm...

Like the weather in the DC area over the past few weeks, things have been relatively quiet around here. Don't get me wrong, it's been ridiculously cold around here, but the weather itself has been boring... cold, cold, and more cold... Consequently, there has not been much to blog about. I missed my chance to talk about how boring the Super Bowl was, or how lame the advertising was this year. I think my favorite ad of the night is a toss-up between the user-created Doritos commercial and the Bud Light wedding commercial. I know the Budweiser commercial with the dog riding on the fire engine seems to have been pretty popular, but that had "cheesy poofs" written all over it as Lauren would say. Sadly, between the commercials and the game, I was ready for bed by the end of the 3rd quarter.

Anyway, since then... the only exciting event has been Steve's 35th birthday. At first I thought he was getting old, and then my friend Noa reminded me that we would be turning 30, which seems just as old. Almost as if I'm in a different generation than Lauren, which has actually led me to look up the definition of Generation X versus
Generation Y.

Turns out that I AM from a different generation than Lauren.
Generation X officially covers individuals born from 1961-1981. Generation Y is official for those born 1979-1999. Not sure what happens if you're born in 79-81... are you a Gen X-Yer?

Officially, my generation has been defined by events such as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of the Cold War, and marked cynicism towards values held dear by previous generations. We've supposedly abandoned the church and have made divorce more commonplace. You can read more about it
here. In any case, while Lauren may be from a different generation, we are both in what is considered to be the MTV Generation... some common ground.

Anyway, back to the "storm" in the title... Tonight through Wednesday is shaping up to be one of the biggest winter storms we have had in a few years. While the snow totals have declined significantly since forecasters began talking about the storm last week, we are still anticipating some significant ice tomorrow and tomorrow night. You can read more about it
here. As the system continues to develop, we will have to see how the commute does or does not go tomorrow. Stay tuned...