Life in the Wight House

Sunday, December 11, 2011

RJ's Star War's Story

RJ wrote this story all by himself. He worked on it over 2 days. Pretty neat imagination.

If you couldn't read it here it is:

Episode VII

Skeletons vs. Ninjas and Jedi’s

Once upon a time there were two brothers named, Wu and Garmandon. Garmandon became evil and wanted to take over the world and fell to the underworld. One day, five ninjas named Kia, Cole, Zane, Jay and Nya came to fight Garmandon and save the world. Meanwhile, in outer space Luke and R2-D2 have discovered a new planet called Elexagon. The ninjas were on there as well looking for Garmandon. Luke spotted a skeleton from Garmandon's army, named Bonzi. Luke comes up while the ninjas run and ka-pow they kill the skeleton. Luke and the ninjas became best friends and taught each other their special moves. One day Garmandon came out of the underworld all the Jedi’s and skeletons had a big fight. Garmandon tried to escape but the ninjas spotted him; they ran as fast as they could to the fire temple as Yoda followed. Krrrr! The powerful Garmandon shocks the ninjas. Will Garmandon take over the world or will Yoda jump out and kill Garmandon? Find out in this awesome episode.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Day 5 - Rome, Italy

FINALLY!!! My last Rome posting! Here it is November and I am finally finishing up posting the pictures from our trip. Unfortunately, as I was looking through the photos, I couldn't remember all the details. Someday I will get better and write in a journal as I travel. Someday ...

Thursday, March 24th

Jared's conference was over and the first thing we did during our last day in Rome was take a tour of the Vatican. The picture below is of me and Flat Stanley at the back entrance of the Vatican Museum.
The Vatican Museum was full of lots of art and sculptures and other historic things to look at. We didn't see it all. There was so much to see. Our first stop was to the Sistine Chapel. And boy was that incredible. We wanted to get there first because we heard the tourists pour in and it gets packed. We heard correctly. We did get there before the crowds and we were able to sit and really enjoy the paintings. No photography was allowed in the chapel, but is was so beautiful! The paintings, especially the ceiling looked 3D, it was neat. I couldn't believe that those paintings were Michelangelo's first painting and he was forced to paint them! They were incredible! After the Sistine Chapel we walked through some other rooms full of paintings by Raphael. And saw some other things in the museum. Below is just a few pictures from the Vatican.

The Pope's carriage back in the day .

There was an interesting story behind this statue but I can't recall it.

The stair case to exist the museum:

Next we had lunch. I had the famous no sauce pizza we heard so much about. It was really good. Just mozzarella cheese and zucchini.

We drank with just about every meal. They drink a lot of coke in Europe, I have never been a coke fan but I craved it when we got back tot he States and our coke just isn't the same as Europe's coke!

The Vatican's Guards

In front of St. Peter's Basilica.
This was our next stop, we went inside and walked around the chapel. We however did not go up into the dome or down into the catacombs. Maybe next time :)
The roads and walkways in Rome are mostly stone and the unevenness of it killed my back. It ached before noon each day, so the thought of climbing all the stairs to the dome was not appealing and we were short in Euros by the last day anyway.

Inside the Basilica:

A crystal coffin of one of the Popes

St. Peter with the Keys to the Kingdom

This is the lists of Popes showing their line of authority dating back to St. Peter, the apostle. I found it interesting that there were a lot of gaps with years of no Popes.

This was an interesting find:

Next we walked the cobblestone streets through the heart of Rome.

We had some really yummy gelato in this ally.
Getting some water from a Roman drinking fountain. So pure and good!

The Pantheon:

It was really neat inside! Jared loved the architect of this round building with no ceiling. The floor has a small slop to it and there are drains to catch all the rain water. Very cool.

Tomb of the first king of Italy . There is always an Italian guard guarding this tomb.

Tomb of Raphael

And finally we made it to the St. Peter in Vincoli (in Chains) Basilica

These are the supposed chains that bound Peter when he was imprisoned in Jerusalem:

Also housed in this church is Michelangelo's famous Moses Sculpture:

Finally that evening we ate, for the second time, at a little restaurant near our hotel with some of Jared's friends from Belgium. We enjoyed catching with them and the Bruschetta at the restaurant was to die for !!! That is all I wanted to eat. They had this garlic olive oil dip with red pepper flakes. It was so yummy!
We loved how this family owned restaurant did their checks. Once we were ready to leave the waiter recalled what we all ordered and wrote down the prices on the table cloth, then added it up. And some to the figures were written different then we write in the USA. It was fun and different.

So when I went with Jared to France and Belgium back in 2008 he was given a spontaneous interview and we went into the process of moving to Belgium as a temporary assignment. That fell through at the last minute mostly from miss communication. However those steps lead us to Virginia and we know each step was directed by the hand of the Lord. It was an interesting time in our life.

During this dinner with foreign friends, Jared was offered the chance to apply to a Belgium job again. His friend is a manger and very much wanted Jared on his team. And Jared really wants to live in Europe for a period of time. He loved his experience in Belgium and wouldn't mind one day working there. So we went into a whirlwind of thought processing as we contemplated taking a job and moving to Belgium once again. March and April gave us an emotional workout. We wanted to go to Europe, but was it right? We loved Virgina and we hadn't been here very long. Jared processed with the application and to my relief it failed quickly. He didn't have enough schooling for the position. His Belgium friend was going to try and break a few rules but we said no. The timing just wasn't right.

I joked with Jared afterwards that I will be a little bit apprehensive about travel to Europe with him again. Both times I went it resulted in a job opportunity. :)

So that is all of our Rome trip. It was a fun place to visit and I would do it again. I hope to see all of Italy some day. I loved the little bit we did see.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Halloween Song

So the other day the kids were singing Jingle Bells. I tired to chime in by changing the words to a more Fall theme, but it wasn't coming together right. RJ took over and let his creative juices flow. After perfecting it a few times he came up with this cleaver rhyme to the tune of Jingle Bells:

Halloween, Halloween, Is the best time ever.

Jumping in the leaves is fun, But a scare is so much better.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Prayer is Simple and Very Powerful!

In Christ, you find peace! I just had a very simple non-monumental experience where I need peace, and I needed it fast. And through simple prayer, I received it. Believe and Receive. Miracles happen everyday.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day 4 - Rome, Italy

Wednesday, March 23

I was on my own again Wednesday morning. Instead of waiting around for Jared, I headed back into the city alone. My first stop was back to the Pincio Gardens. There was a Temple and pond I saw on the map that I wanted to find. I very much enjoyed my quite stroll through the gardens as I tired to navigate my paper map and not look too touristy.

I finally found what I was looking for.
The Temple of Aesculapius, Villa Borghese, Rome
It was a very pretty area where you could rent a canoe and enjoy the afternoon.

After the park, I got on the Metro and headed back towards the Colosseum. I wanted to find the church that was said to house the chains of St. Peter, but I got a little side tracked. As I was walking down the road a man stopped me and asked for the time. I forgot that 1 pm was really
13 o'clock and ruined my cover. Yes, I am an American! He talked with me for a little bit about what I should see in Rome and the wine I should taste. I think he was offering his services as a tour guide, but I wasn't so sure as his English wasn't perfect. Jared text-ed me during this conversation saying his meetings were over and asking which metro station I was closest to. I explained to the cute Italian that my husband will be meeting me soon. He walked me towards the metro station and then took off. It wasn't 5 or 10 minutes later that I realized that I was possibly being hit on. With 45 minutes to spare, I walked back over to the Roman Forum and walked around the opposite side of the grounds from where Jared and I walked our first day in Rome. The Roman Forum was my favorite place in Rome.

Arch of Constantine

(View of the Forum from the street)
I am amazed at how the ancient ruins are right there with modern everyday live.

An indent in the stone road from a chariot.

Palatine Hill:
I believe the following ruins were part of the Flavian Place,
the residential complex of the Roman Emperors

Marble flooring

View of the Colosseum

Stadium of Domitian:
Domitian, was a Roman Emperor (51-96 AD) who had a passion for sport. He implemented the Capitoline Games in 86 AD which were similar to the Olympic Games. Held every four years, the games included various athletic events and chariot races. Gladiator fights, including ones between female and dwarf gladiators were also held.

This semicircular structure looked out onto the stadium.

After walking around Palatine Hill, I met Jared at the Metro and we walked around the Circus Maximus, which really isn't anything now except a big field. Then we tired to find the Church of St. Peter in Chains, but got our directions mixed up. Along the way we found some other interesting churches.

First we stopped in a market down a side ally. This is a picture of spices for sale. We bought some pasta here, multicolored spaghetti and some orange flavored linguine noodles.

This looked interesting so we decided to check it out.

Once inside the arch ways we found ourselves in a courtyard outside a Monastery. There were several doors one had a sign and at the bottom of this sign in English it read "Ring the Bell to Visit. Your Offering is Appreciated." So I rang the bell. And next to a wall was a gated window and the window was shut. Upon ringing the bell a noun opened the door, scared me to death and said 1 Euro please. We asked what we were visiting and she directed us to the door behind us and said to pay 1 Euro and go through the door. So we thought, why not and did as we were told.
Behind the door was a chapel. No cameras were allowed. The walls were covered with frescoes that were very old and we stayed inside looking at them for a little while before heading out.

After following our map some more we came to this church which we thought was St. Peter in Chains, however we were wrong. It looked very similar to the church from the outside. (We were on the back end, apparently) The church is called Papal Arch-basilica of St. John Lateran. We didn't know at the time that this was the cathedral of the Bishop of Rome and ranked highest of all the Catholic Churches, higher then St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. It was indeed a gorgeous church and we only walked through part of it. If we had known how important this church was we might have walked around in it longer, apparently is contains a beautiful courtyard as well. It was massive with many hallways and chapels, full of gold and marble.
(this is the back of the church)

And check out this door!

Once we left the church we looked at the map again to determine where we were. We discovered we had gone in the complete opposite direction of where we were trying to get. As we set course again we came across this city playground. Again it is crazy how modern day life is surrounded by ancient life. How cool would it be to play at a playground surrounded by ruins!

And we also stopped at this little bakery and picked up some delicious treats.
I just LOVE European sweets!

We made it to St. Peter in Chains 5 minutes after the church closed. So we sat on the steps and watched the sun set while enjoying our cookies.
We then walked back towards the Colosseum to see it all lite up at night.

And finally we headed towards the Jewish Ghettos of Rome. There we had one of the most amazing pasta dishes on earth. I wish I could recall the Restaurant's name, but it was divine! I can't remember what Jared ate but I had some sort of Pumpkin Tortellini with the most delicious sweet white cream sauce. MMMMMMM, It was to die for, Jared and I seriously licked that plate clean.

And these photos were taken for Molly,
When we walked by this restaurant we thought of nothing but you!