Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Parks with Grandpa

We love parks!
 Play parks, State Parks, National Parks and....AIRSTEAM PARKS! Leave it to Grandpa to sniff out the nearest Airstream Only Park just north of Pensacola. We promised him that we could go visit so we planned on giving him plenty time to chit-chat with the locals.  He wanted to get a good feel about Airstream life from people "living the dream." I'm not sure he's ready to live in one permanently but he did get some great feedback and advice...or so we think he did. We were too busy to pay attention completely. They had a hiking trail, huge river, shuffle board and good ol' stick in sand drawing game to keep us busy. We were content and so was Grandpa.
Henry & Grandpa checking out the river.

Axel found some acorns and sticks which were instantly turned into magic "po-shums" potion utensils.

Henry, Grandpa & Lucas headed out to see the Airstreams.

They were there!

Not a million but enough to make Grandpa's heart smile.
Over and
over! :)

The next day we took Grandpa to Rocky Bayou State Park to show him our favorite trails and play park.

Gotta check out the map first.

Lucas was blazing ahead but Grandpa kept him in his sights.

Axel did great too...

But needed a little break after the long trail.

We all took a break to see the bay. It was a beautiful day and a great opportunity for Grandpa to tell some old stories. We had found some raccoon foot prints so Grandpa told us about his sisters "pet" raccoon biting the tip of his nose and shaking like mad! It did not sound like fun.

What did sound like fun was heading to the play park. Here are our monkeys! They played on the pull-up bars for a good 30 minutes before we hit one last nature trail.




I love this one!
And yes, there is more to come....

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Grandpa Jakulewicz Comes to Florida

My Dad came out to visit for a solid week and we just had the best time. It was so wonderful to see him and share NW Florida with him. We hit all the hot spots and dined on a "little" seafood along the way. I had been talking about getting Grandpa J to come visit for months so when the airline tickets were purchased we were excited. The boys could hardly wait for his arrival. Even our neighbors were anxious for him to come and invited us over for dinner the night he arrived...and the next...and the get the point!

One of the first places we decided to take Grandpa was to Seaside, FL. It's a wonderful, quaint, beach community without all the high rise hotels, chain restaurants and craziness associated with Destin tourism. It's quiet, at least in the Winter, and it's cute!

We drove along the beach to show off the cost and then stopped for lunch. We ate at Red Bar in Grayton Beach which was super tasty and Grandpa got his fill of fresh grouper and gulf shrimp. He was hooked!

He also was thrilled to see the Airstream diners lined up near the downtown park in Seaside. Axel ran around the park like a crazy man while Grandpa carefully inspected each and every trailer. Airstreams make his heart smile. This man is IN.LOVE when it comes to Airstreams and is counting down the days, minutes, seconds until he owns one himself. He's adorable! After a little Frisbee with Axel, we headed to the beach.

Chatting with an employ of one of the Airstream restaurants.

We had to go to the beach!

Axel trying to convince Grandpa that we have to physically go on to the beach. We couldn't just stop right where all that wonderful sand started. I have a feeling Grandpa was teasing someone.

This was the first time I had ever seen seaweed lining the beach right at the water line.

Mixed in with the seaweed were these crazy blue Portuguese Man-of-War Jellyfish. They lined the beach and washed up along with the seaweed. We thought they were water balloons until we got a better look.
That evening, we headed back to H&H's for dinner. Here Grandpa is trying to bribe Ava  (who hates 99% of male adults) with a little cheese and crackers. She's a tough nut/pup to crack but she sure didn't mind his free handouts.

Pretty normal scene with the boys having dinner at H&H's house. We have dinner over there quiet often. Daddy is going to have to get used to our new dinner routine. We like to share with our neighbors and luckily, they like to share too!

Heather experimenting with Lobster Bisque. We love when she experiments!

My salad boy!
 And that was DAY ONE!!

Getting 2013 Started

Not only was it New Years, it was January 1st which meant one more month down. The boys have become very fond of our 1st of the month celebrations and am right there with them. These little milestones are so important and they remind us that we are getting through this deployment!
Since I was a little sick, we stayed close to home for most of the day. The boys didn't mind at all, it gave them time to check out all their Christmas loot. We did make it out to Destin for some pizza and ice cream. It was Axel's turn to pick out the location for dinner and he picked out Red Brick Pizza. He loves the pizza and the TV's found in each booth. The little park is a nice perk too!

Sharing a rootbeer!

After dinner, we hit Cold Stone. I love their kid sizes and prices! We each got our own which was the real treat. Normally we share but today was extra special.
A few days later, we made plans to go to the Gulf Breeze Zoo. I had heard that it was small but cute so I really wasn't sure what to expect. Let me tell you, it was totally worth the drive. It's small but not super small and the variety of animals was very impressive. We just had a blast! You can get very close to some very big animals and because of the smallness, you get really good views of all the critters.

Hands down, our favorite part was the bird house! It was awesome and there were hundreds of parakeets flying around your head, landing on your head, checking out jewelry and digging in your bags. I had a little lady bird who LOVED my bag. Her loyal blue boyfriend would follow her everywhere and would watch out while she obsessively tried to get into my bag. We went back right before leaving the park and she was instantly on my bag with boyfriend in tow. It was adorable.

This gorgeous guy strutted his stuff along the zoo paths.

We even got to feed the giraffes after figuring out how to get close enough.

It was a stretch!

The little baby monkey was so fun to watch. It would watch the "teenagers" swing on the ropes and try to imitate them.

Some big cats!! So amazing, although, I did feel bad they were stuck in a zoo. I guess better there than someones apartment!

This little lion cub wanted so badly to play with Lucas & Axel.

My little roos.

The boys thought these were hilarious!
 As were were driving home, I was trying to figure out what would be a great dinner to end a great day at the zoo. We were conveniently on the right side of town to hit one of our favorite Mexican restaurants called Tijuana Flats. They have tasty grouper fish tacos and awesome guac that won't break the bank.

My boys had never tried a taco. A real taco. They have had cheese quesadillas but not a taco with meat in it. Lucas was convinced that he would hate it. So, I never really pressed the issue. We just tell the boys that someday they will discover that these "weird" things we ask them to try are actually good.

I decided that TF was it. Then came the pep talk..."So guys, want to try a taco sometime before Daddy gets back? Daddy would be amazed if you did? He might even fall out of his chair or bonk his head in amazement if you tried a real taco!"  That did it! They were on board, or so they said so in the car. I had my doubts.

I reassured Lucas that a taco was nothing he hadn't already had...tortilla chips, hamburger, taco seasoning (basically BBQ sauce spices minus the sugar). He was still on board.

Axel got a little scared seeing a big taco stare at him. He opted for a micro bite and then proceeded to eat the shell. It was a step in the right direction.

Lucas took a real bite. "It tastes weird." I told him it "tastes new" and he should try at least on more bite. He did. His reply, "This is kind of good!" After the next bite, "It gets better and better, I like it!"

Hooray for Mommy's successful event! I was so proud. We took pictures to share with Daddy and Daddy just about fell out of his chair! :)
Way to go Lucas!

Way to go Axel! Love that micro bite!
The next day we set off to explore Anderson Pond Recreation Area located on Eglin property. We had to get a pass so we were legal but we had a fun afternoon. We found three fun trails to hike on and felt miles away from Florida. They were very much like the trails we loved in Dayton.
Brothers! I love it!

A hill! A real hill!

Above Photo: Downtown Portland Oregon Bike Ride

The Danger Zone needed a little update to include not only LUCAS DANGER, but also his little brother...AXEL ADVENTURE!

Welcome to our family blog now known as:

DANGER and ADVENTURE Around Every Corner!!