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November 26, 2006

And So the Holidays Begin

I haven't met many people who don't love Thanksgiving. It's the holiday that is truly focused on family and not gifts. This year was no different here at Thirsty Boots Farm. Julie, Patrick and Heather were here, as were the girls' boyfriends, Dave and George. Dave and Julie brought Antje who is from Germany and works with Dave. Jonathan was here along with Marnie, Matt and their three children Lindsay, Katie and Isabelle. And you know what? It's all the more wonderful with kids.... and especially when they put on a fashion show...

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and when lead by the fashion sophisticate Heather....

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Isabelle

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Lindsay

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Even Antje gets into the act.

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A normal Antje and Dave

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Suzanne and Matt came by for a drink.

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While Pat and Matt talked shop...

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the girls went off to collect eggs.

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then it was back to the house...

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and things got going in the kitchen.

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Later - "Too much food!!!"

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Heather and George

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Julie

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Future "Dancing with the Stars" contestants practicing their dip.

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There was lots of love to go around...

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lots and lots, and there will be again in three weeks when we get together with even more family!

Until then.................

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Ho, ho, ho! (Katie)

(For more pictures of the day, go to Heather's website.)

December 8, 2006

Christmas Family Party #1

So here we are...the countdown to the Christmas. I do love December for all that it offers, mostly time to get together with family. For the McCurdys it begins about two Sundays before Christmas. This originally was Baba's party which started off in her apartment in Scarsdale and then when it got a little too overwelming for her, moved to Wingedfoot or Larchmont Yacht Club. This is the second party without her but thanks to Kathy 1who brought a photograph, she and Joe McCurdy Sr., were with us in spirit.

Looking at the photos, I can't help but think back over the past 30 years (when I first joined the McCurdy family) and I look at those of us who attended Sunday, think about those who were missing (Marty, Warren, Elliot, John, Erin, Christy, Bruce, Matt, Courtney, and Brian), and I
think about how fortunate I am.

The ladies looked lovely!
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Sue, Sophia, Julie, Barb, Kathy, Kathy, Chrissy, Heather

And the guys gorgeous!
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Mike, FJ, Patrick, Joe, F, John and Joe

(By the way, there will NOT be a repeat of "elders" chairs for next year!)

They say Christmas is for kids and it's true. While the "grown-ups" had fun with our Yankee Swap, it was more fun to see Sophia's reaction to her new friend. She loved her Ruff-Ruff.

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It was a glorious day, as it always is when we visit Larchmont Yacht Club, and how lucky we are to have such a special place. We had a great time.

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Now it's on the the Thompson Christmas this Sunday!!! And who knows, we just might get a visit from "you know who."

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December 18, 2006

Christmas is for Kids-Party # 2

Sunday was our annual Thompson get-together and it is true what they say...Christmas is for kids. This year Lindsay, Katie and Isabelle Miller were with us as was 10-month old Tristan Rezza. Being around them and watching their faces was pure joy.

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Leah and Tristan Rezza.

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The bigger kids they went riding.

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Katie rode Willy and Lindsay rode Oreo.

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Izzy patiently waited.

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Then she rode Oreo.

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Webster cheered Katie from the sidelines.

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So did the guys.

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Then there was a visit from Santa!

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Tris liked him.

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After he left, Santa Heather passed out the gifts.

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Julie had fun playing with Tristan.

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So did "Grandpa" Cameron.

There were a few grown-ups around who had fun also.

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The five Thompson siblings.

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Matt and Marnie - John in the background.

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Marina and Claudia

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Dave opening his gift with Julie in the background.

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Pat got his shirt.

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Kim and Yvonne. We missed seeing Claudia who was home babysitting a new dog.

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Yvonne and Cameron

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Marina, Jonathan and Heather

For me there was one photo that summed up not only the day, but the entire season.

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Merry Christmas, Everyone. Six days to go.

December 31, 2006

Christmas Whirlwind

Phew! Can't believe I haven't had an entry since December 18th. What a busy but wonderful two weeks.

The Christmas season began December 22 with Julia's arrival from the south of France. Julia has joined us for Christmas for 16 of the last 18 years and is truly a part of the family. She quickly adapted to the new time zone and we were off to Jeff and Claudia's in Niantic for Christmas Eve.

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Julia and Jeff

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Beth Tunick was here again this year (with Claudia).

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As was her daughter, Liz.

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Beth and John

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Jonathan was up from New York....

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as was Patrick....

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and Ted (talking to John).

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At dinner with Marina.

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The table looked great.

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So did the roast.

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Claudia and Marina

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A fun time was had by all-Liz and Patrick

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Julia and Patrick

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Beth, Jeff and Marina

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And once again, we had lots of laughs playing "Catch Phrase."


Christmas morning was next and Julie, Dave and Heather joined us. There were those big stockings to open (made by our friend Jane Garcia 28 years ago!)

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Dave's gift from Heather was just too intriguing so we made him open it first.

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What could the tower be?

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Of course....13 boxes of "healthy" breakfast cereal. Remember Boo Berry?


They say it's better to give than to receive.

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But receiving can be fun too!

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Julia watching the proceedings...

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and got her bear.


Yes the true spirit of Christmas was with us all.

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Wait.....is that Julie's arm around Tucker!!!!????


It was a great morning...one of great joy and family. Patrick took the week off so there were nights of bridge with Julia, dinner out, a party for 30 in Julia's honor, and then Patrick's birthday party Friday night. Chrissy was able to join us.

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There were some gifts to share with her.

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Then it was on to dinner and Patrick's cake and gifts.

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Hmmmm....what is it?

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Still not sure about this one!

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Once again, it was another fun night. Happy Birthday, Pat!


On December 30, Julia returned to France. And today, Sunday, Chrissy and Patrick headed out to Long Island for a New Year's Eve party. And now John and I are home again with just each other. It's quiet once more and while there is a small sense of loss, the memories created this past week will remain forever.

Tonight we'll go to the movies as it's the only way we can stay awake to watch the ball drop!

Then tomorrow, New Year's Day, it's on to putting away the Christmas decorations, watching the bowl games. and oh, yes.........I've got to finish Julia's Christmas gift which for some reason she neglected to take back to France.

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Guess that means there will be one more thing to do....follow the annual New Year's resolution to lose weight!

Happy New Year, Everyone! A wonderful 2007 to us all.

August 7, 2007

Happy McCurdys!

Twenty-seven years ago, John and I were thrilled with this little boy...

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but now we are even more thrilled....

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Patrick and Christine Cinella are engaged and the McCurdys could not be happier.

Here they are at weddings of friends...

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We'll be looking forward to their own wedding photos.

August 26, 2007

Extending the Family!

John and I continue to wring out the very best moments of our summer! This weekend we traveled to Lee, Massachusetts to meet Christine Cinella's parents (Diane and Tom) and to share in the joy of our kids' engagement. We met them at their house on Main Street along with Chrissy's sister-in-law, her two children and a family friend. After a celebratory bottle of Veuve Cliquot, we went to dinner....

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and then it was off to the James Taylor concert at Tanglewood.

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Could a weekend get any better? Yes....

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Chrissy and Patrick took us to a couple of possible reception sites.

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Diane incredibly walked right along with us, less than 2 weeks after knee replacement surgery!

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We tried to identify this huge tree on the grounds of Tanglewood. I think it's a Black Locust.

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Seiji Ozawa concert hall

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Pat looking over the Stockbrige Bowl from the Saranac Inn.

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A visit to the Red Lion Inn...

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and photos on the historic porch.

It was a great visit and we returned home to another celebratory bottle of the "Widow" and a lobster dinner. Heather came to share in the celebration...

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as did Julie on Sunday morning.

There is much joy in the McCurdy house as we hear Chrissy and Patrick's thoughts and plans for their wedding. It will be an exciting year for all of us but mostly for them.

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Enjoy every moment, you two!

October 28, 2007

Thank You, Chrissy and Patrick

Thanks to these two wonderful people

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two families and some friends were brought together for an evening of smiles, love and joy. The following are just some of the smiles of the evening:

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The Cinellas and McCurdys

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Chrissy and sister Kate

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Pat and his sisters Julia and Heather

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Chrissy with Heather and Julia

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happy father and groomsmen

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Happy cousin Tom, Aunt Kathy and Patsy Harkess

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More family

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Pat and Chrissy with the Shanahans

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Cousins Mike and Suzanne Fee

So thanks, Pat and Chrissy. We're looking forward to more occassions to get together an celebrate your future.

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November 17, 2007

GRAND DAME

This past week, a great lady passed away. John's aunt and god-mother, his mother's older sister, Martha O'Hagan O'Sullivan, died in her sleep at age 95. Her final birthday was just three weeks ago.

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Aunt Martha was an incredible person and I'll do my best to describe her. She was an out-going woman, bursting with life and enthusiasm and a wonderful sense of humor. She was proud of her Irish heritage. She was passionate about things and had her own interests and strong opinions. She was a walking cyclone; when something needed to get down, she got organized and did it. She was tough when she needed to be and she was strong. She was loving - she took great care of her seven children and countless students she taught over the years. She was loyal and unwaverligly faithful to her religion. She was positive and saw the good in people. And she liked and was interested in people. When you spoke to her, you had her full attention.

Mostly, Aunt Martha loved a good party.

Aunt Martha was larger than life and when someone like that leaves us, we feel overwhelming sadness. We cannot believe they are gone forever. All that energy, influence and strength surely can't just end. And so we look for (and almost expect) there to be signs from them after they are gone - will they come to us in a dream, be that shooting star over Cape Cod on an August night, or the whisper of a breeze on our faces? We beg for these signs but they seldom happen. And that, too, is overwhelmingly sad.

But sometimes things do happen; we just don't recognize them at the time.

Three or four weeks ago, hearing that Aunt Matha's health was declining, Heather went to visit her. When she got home from her visit, she retrieved Baba's rosary given to her years before and put it next to her bed. Since then, Heather said, she had tried a few times to recite the rosary but each time fell asleep before she finished.

Wednesday of this week, Heather went to bed at 10:30, and feeling the need to try again, took the beads in her hands. This time she was successful in completing her prayers. She put down the beads and went to sleep. She would learn the following day that Aunt Martha died sometime after 10:00 p.m.

There are some who will say this was pure coincidence, and that's OK. It's possible. But it's also possible that something or someone else was, and is, at work here.

Upon hearing her story, John said to Heather, "Baba put her rosary in your hands," and he also reminded Heather of the appropriateness of her prayer, especially the final line...

"Hail Mary full of of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb Jesus. Holy Mary, mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen."

Good job, Baba and Heather.

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Sisters Barbara and Martha, together once again

November 23, 2007

Thanksgiving 2007

We were a small group this year, down 14 to 5, but that didn't dampen our enthusiasm for food and fun.

What a glorious day it was, topping out in the low 60s and not a drop of rain (as the weathermen had predicted). We headed out to the lawn with Heather's delicous hors d'ouevres and our Bloody Marys, to play boules.

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A confident Heather and Patrick take on Chrissy and Dad

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Dad shows off his bocci style

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Chrissy is next

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She even tries to "help" the opposition

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But Pat sticks to his own game plan.

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The group under the Japanese Maple

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Then it was on to the food: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry relish, peas and parsnips....parsnips? The chickens loved them.

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Heather helps herself to cranberry relish.

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Tryptophan starts to kick in...

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And then comes down like a sledge hammer...

We couldn't handle pumpkin pie after our meal, so we decided to wait. We waited til 8:00! Even then, it was hard to find room.

It was a fun day and Pat and Chrissy decided to leave Friday morning on the train so we were able to extend their visit (not sure we could have made the waddle to the station in the evening anyway!).


March 9, 2008

Off for St. Patrick's Day

We're closing in on March 17th. We're all familiar with New York's celebration. Savannah, Georgia boasts the second largest St. Patrick's Day party in the U.S. But we will await word from Ireland for they haven't experienced the McCurdy men.

On March 14, Patrick and John will take off for Dublin with Joe McCurdy to stay with young Joe who is working there. The last time they all got together, things looked like this....


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Hopefully they will not come back looking like this.....


Stay tuned.

March 21, 2008

Male Bonding

When I heard that John, Patrick, and Joe McCurdy were planning a March 14th trip to visit young Joe McCurdy working in Dublin, I thought what a great idea - brothers and cousins getting together. I promised an updated photo from the one taken at Williams years ago and the guys were thoughtful enough to set it up and have it taken.

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They even got the placement right.

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Another one

John and Patrick flew to Dublin March 14 and met Joe and Joe there. There was some typical sightseeing.

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Father and son

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Uncle Joe and Pat

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They even found a street named after Hagan!

After all that sightseeing, what's a body to do? When in Dublin, it is important to check out the pubs. Wanting to be good tourists, our boys obliged.....

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Again, father and son.

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The cousins

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Brothers

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But you can't go to Dublin over St. Patrick's Day weekend without going to the parade.

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But when you can't see over other people, it's back to the pub.....

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There is always a time when things seem to take a turn for the worse. Could this moment be it?

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Hmmmm.....

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What is this? Who is teaching whom?

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Hey...let's go do something fun...Oh oh...what could that be....

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Shouldn't have asked.

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Another view!

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They even showed the dads!

Well, a good time was had by all...

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and it is hoped that the Leprechaun outfits don't surface too soon in New York City!


April 6, 2008

Chrissy's Shower

While Patrick was at his bachelor weekend with friends down in Miami, Heather, Julie and I headed to Lee, Massachusetts for a shower given by Chrissy's mom and aunts.

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Chrissy and her BC friends

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There were the gifts.

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But it was the cupcakes that were on everyone's mind!

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Julie and Heather

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Wedding Party table

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There were toasts and games.

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Diane with her grandson Kyle

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Then there were the gifts.

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I'm a little teapot!

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A nice Irish blanket...where is that leprechan anyway?

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Lots of flatwear!

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Beautiful painted wine glasses

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Wedding emboidery

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And what's a shower without some racy underwear.

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So here we go....another party or two until the big day.

Only 11 weeks to go.

April 20, 2008

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JULIE!

April 18...a great day in history. Paul Revere's ride may have been two hundred and thirty three years ago, but it was 30 years ago that Julie was born. We were thrilled with our first child.

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It was great to pull off a surprise birthday party for her on Saturday.

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Heather and George were there and brought fireworks.

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Allison came bringing dip and macaroons.

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Goga surprised Julie coming up from New York with her friend, Neil.

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Out came the photo album of Julie and Goga in the old days.

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Bob Cashman was there.

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Andrew and Michelle join in conversation with Mike Feeney.

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Suzanne and Matt were there.

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Brian and Hope came and brought their son Oliver (Max)! Heather had a turn holidng him.

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Julie had a turn.

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Allison has fun holding Oliver.

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Even I got to hold him.

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Dinner

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Gifts

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Julie loved the boots.

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Heather made her a necklace out of watch parts!

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Julie had a great time.

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As did some others.

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Happy birthday, Julie. Thanks for a great 30 years. We love you.

April 27, 2008

I LOVE GETTING READY FOR WEDDINGS!

Patrick and Chrissy's impending wedding is bringing families together and we are having a blast.

Last night we attended a party at Winged Foot Golf Club that was given by Barbara and Frank Fee and Joe and Kathy (number 1) McCurdy. Marty McCurdy Moran (in Eugene, Oregon) was in "attendence" through the flowers she contributed for the family affair. Everyone was thrilled to share in Chrissy and Pat's happiness.

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The two dads

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The two moms

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Chrissy visits with Barbara...

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and then F.

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Patrick checks out the personalized Hershey Kisses with future father-in-law Tom Cinella.

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Then with Diane.

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Kathy McCurdy chats with Patrick and his friend Billy Marino

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Chrissy chats with Dave and Julie and Frank.

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Frank chats with John and groomsman Rodes Ponzer

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Heather and Seve Wiater

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Chrissy and her dad visit with Billy and Rodes

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Barb talks with Steve and Katie Wiater, Chrissy's aunt and uncle.

The toasts were the highlight of the evening.

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F graciously welcomed us all and from as far away as Seattle and Dublin.

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Joe dispensed some sage advice: 1. Don't get into a wrestling match with someone stronger than you and 2. Don't come home wearing a leprechaun costume.

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Kathy was creative and wrote a poem.

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But it was Barbara's toast of Patrick's lifetime of smiles that touched us all.

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And Patrick is indeed smiling largely these days.

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Pat with family and friends

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Chrissy surrounded by some of her attendants

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Groomsman Al Tylis with his father-in-law Tom Cinella

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Katie Tylis and Patrick

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Groomsman Will Davidson brought fiance Blair Eby

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Heather and George Chamberlain

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Chrissy and Erin

It was a great time for all families.

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Joe (Dublin) and Hagan (Seattle) catch up

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We loved meeting FJ's girlfriend, Diyari Karin

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and Joe's girldfriend, Katie Hassell.

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We missed Murphy McCurdy and Hagan's husband Jeff Kappler in this picture.

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We took this photo for Jeff in Iraq.

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Patrick, Heather and John

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Yes, indeed, Patrick is happy.


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Some gifts were opened.

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Kelly Brbovik and her Aunt Diane look on.

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There was in attempt at some dancing but perhaps that is better left for the wedding.


We can't wait for that day, Pat and Chrissy. Here's to you!

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June 23, 2008

Pat and Chrissy's Last Dance

Patrick and Chrissy's wedding was magical last weekend and photos will be forthcoming. Meanwhile here is the last dance of the evening before heading off to Beruit and 30 Hot Tomatoes pizza


July 4, 2008

Two Weeks After the Wedding

Those of you who regularly look at this blog must be wondering why I've taken so long to get some photos of Patrick and Chrissy's wedding posted. Well the answer is simple....it took me a whole week to disconnect from that wonderful day. I didn't like the fact it was over.

In the months leading up to the wedding, I had advised both Pat and Chrissy to stop and take mental photos of their day, that it would go so fast and all the months of anticipation would be over in a flash. Well, I should have heeded my own advice. The glorious weekend went by quickly, leaving me very disappointed that it was over. I also spent the week reveling in all the photo albums people sent me, and trying to determine the best photos to order for my album.

Therein lay the other reason for the delay of this entry. Each picture was better than the next. Each represented a moment in the weekend not to be forgotten. I couldn't possibly post all of them - there were hundreds!

So I've decided to concentrate on the pure joy emanating from Pat and Chrissy that weekend. It was palpable as was the love from family and friends who surrounded them.

So....to Pat and Chrissy....

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Rehearsal dinner

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Waiting at the alter

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Bridesmaids

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Groomsmen

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Cinellas

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McCurdys

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July 30, 2008

WELCOME HOME, JEFF!

The following email from Hagan was most welcome news:

Jeff is safe in San Diego! Landed to a marching band playing god bless America and all of us waving our little flags and red, white and blue pom poms. We just got back from a Mexican dinner - Jeff's fave place from this fall. He looks great - is a little tired but just very happy to be home. Or almost home... Love you all! I've given enough kisses and hugs for everyone so far.

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Welcome home, Jeff. We are so grateful you're home safe!

August 5, 2008

Jeff Kappler's Arrival!

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Two very happy people

October 2, 2008

CAMERON ACHESON THOMPSON April 15, 1952 - September 26, 2008

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On Friday, September 26, at age 56, Cameron died of a heart attack while in bed reading a book. He was found by Geoffrey. Cameron had recently spoken to Jonathan and had also been with friends that Wednesday night. Kimberley noted that nothing Cameron had next to him on the bed was disturbed, so it appears he left us peacefully and in his sleep.

Cameron had his ups and downs in life; he had some successes and perhaps more than his share of disappointments. He had some excesses and challenges that he found difficult to overcome. In the end, his heart just gave out.

It is upon Cameron's heart that I want to focus.

Cameron had a "big" heart. At the core of his very being, in his soul, Cameron was a charming, generous, funny, loving, caring, kind, nice person. Many considered him a "nice guy."

Family was important to him, not only his own but Yvonne Stammler's as well. Cameron loved Yvonne, her daughter Leah, Leah's husband Michael Rezza and he delighted in their two children Tristan and Morgan. Leah says he called Tristan daily.

He loved his siblings, and reveled in being "Uncle Ebenezer" (the persona of the grouchy old uncle) to his nieces, Marnie, Lindsay, Julia, Heather, Marina, and one nephew Patrick, as well as his great nieces and nephews - Lindsay, Katie, Isabelle, Alex and Jamie.

Cameron's friends were extremely important to him and he was fiercely loyal to them. He would do anything for anybody without a second thought, including give you the proverbial "shirt off his back." In return, people loved Cameron. And while he sometimes might have disappointed us, we never gave up on him because we loved him.

In short, Cameron had a heart that was big enough for all of us to fit into.

We will remember Cameron as a cheerful, endearing little boy who learned to "read" The Plant Sitter by Gene Zion. We will remember him as "giggledee-ga." We will remember his Browning days, Deerfield days, his graduations from Wooster Academy, Trinity College and The Old Vic Theatre School. We will remember The Big Apple Circus. We will remember him on New Year's Eve at 72nd Street and Park Avenue. We will remember his fondness for cats. We will remember him with little children on his lap. We will remember him at Thanksgiving and Christmas time. And more recently, we will remember his happiness at Patrick and Chrissy's wedding in June. At that time he told Chrissy how peaceful Cranwell was and how he had chosen a favorite place on a wall where he could sit and look out at the Berkshire Mountains. I saw him on that wall and that is a thought that comforts me.

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Rehearsal dinner

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Happy family, less Kim and Julie, Patrick, Chrissy and Heather. I particularly like this photo as the look on his face reminds me of him as a little boy.

Cameron's physical heart stopped September 26, but the body and soul of this man could not be stopped. Instead his spiritual heart, with our own personal spaces, scattered like autumn leaves and dispersed that Friday to join all our hearts. Cameron's heart and soul will remain within us always. We will not be able to forget him.


October 23, 2008

Young Cameron

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The smile never changed.

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December 29, 2008

Family Holidays

It has been a busy fall and a newly started third grade blog has kept these fingers away from my personal blog. Sorry about that.

So let's get back to basics...family and friends.

It has been an equally busy December with many family parties celebrating the holidays. The McCurdys got together at the beginning of December at Larchmont Yacht for our annual brunch and Yankee Swap.

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Heather brought Lily Grace Chamberlain again.

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Mike and Sue brought new Lily Grace Fee.

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Yes, there are two Lily Graces!

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The annual man chat

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Sister-in-law visit (I was there too!)

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Grownup table

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Lily and Sophia at the kid table.

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Great food although this is not a good example of a cholesterol free plate!

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We moved on to the Yankee Swap.

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Some people were excited about their pick....

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while some others were not!

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Hmmmm...this one has been 'round before, I think.

Time for the annual family photo which was NOT our Christmas card this year since we had the family photo at Patrick and Chrissy's wedding.

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Patrick and Chrissy start their own tradition and appropriately as Patrick proposed to Chrissy at Larchmont.


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After the McCurdy party, it was two weeks until the Thompson Christmas. Stay tuned!


A VERY MERRY THOMPSON CHRISTMAS

It's almost 10 days after our "Thompson" family party and I am still glowing from the from the warmth and love that emitted from that day. It is said that "Christmas is for children" and that was no more evident than this year. It was the children who impressed me the most and gave me such a happy time.

We were sorry that Michael couldn't accompany Yvonne, Tristan, Leah and cutie Morgan this year. We all took too many photos of Morgan who was just too cute.

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Kim enjoyed holding her.

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Heather enjoyed feeding her.

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I enjoyed taking photos of her.

As I did with the other kids also.....

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Patrick and Isabelle

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Katie and Heather

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Tristan

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Lindsay with mom and Uncle Kim

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We had a surprise visit from Santa Claus!

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The kids were very excited about that!

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Hmmmm....so were some of the adults.

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Tristan was very excited.

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Morgan got to sit on his lap.

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Santa chatted with Lindsay.

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And Katie...he remembered Katie's dress from last year!

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Isabelle was somewhat quiet.

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We took a photo for Mrs. Claus.

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Tristan got a book all about Santa which Lindsay read to the kids.


After Santa left we moved on to gift giving.

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The girls got matching shirts!

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And soccer art! We've got the Yellow Cobras, Blue Baracuddas and New Canaan.

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Patrick got a back massager (thanks for sharing this week, Pat!)

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Some are pleased by the least little thing...copier paper.

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Some gifts tugged at our emotions. It was our first Christmas without Cameron and it was difficult.

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Some people wanted gifts that were beneficial to others, in this case the birds.

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For Claudia it was Heifer International. She "gave" a flock of chicks, geese and ducks. Good move, Claudie.


The children were so impressive. they were genuinely interested in what everyone got and stood by as each individual unwrapped their gift.

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Here the kids watch as Patrick opens what turns out to be a special gift.


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His great great-grandfather's Colt 45.

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Some gifts were toasty...a down jacket...

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PJs from Chrissy

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Tristan delivered a gift for Aunt Joan who drove down from the Cape to be with us.

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He helped her unwrap it.


After dinner we moved on to dinner.


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Each year people fight to sit at the kids' table. Can you blame them?

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Some prefer not to use their spoons for eating.

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Oh dear, look what we started!

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Go, Katie!

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Mom refuses to be upstaged by her kids!

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Tristan wants to learn and so Lindsay teaches him.

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He does it!

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This deserves two photos! Tristan is so pleased!

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Even Auntie Claudia gets into the act!

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I think Morgan wants to try.


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But it's time for dessert.

After dinner, it's time to settle the kids down with a movie. WE picked Annie.

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Hmmmm.....all the kids, I guess.

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Comfy on the sofa.

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Very comfy.

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Really, really comfy.

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Even for grown-ups.

It was a fantastic day....one I am still reliving.

March 1, 2009

TOGETHER

Quick....grab the camera! It's not often we are together without extended family at the holidays, so when we found ourselves yesterday, sitting around in the kitchen and chatting, it was time for a photo! Wish Chrissy had been with us but she was in sunny Florida.

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January 8, 2010

Christmas Sailing in the BVI

Our long anticipated sailing vacation with the kids didn't turn out quite the way we expected but we did learn a lot which should help with possible future trips. The most important lessons for me were that we'll attach ourselves to moorings in the future (dragging in the middle of the night is not fun) and we'll eat out more. No more cooking for me. I've always found it challenging to created delicious meals in such a small place but the bloom is off the rose on that one.

It also didn't help that three, perhaps four of us, contracted a bug off the plane. Heather was laid low on our first night out on the boat and we had to return to Roadtown 24 hours later to rehydrate her at Peebles Hospital. So on the third day of our vacation, we "began" our trip again. That night was my turn to get sick and that laid me low for the following day. Patrick was next and the bug kept him from attending the world famous New Year's party at Foxy's he had so looked forward to. Couple that with two to three days of rain, winds, and swells and our trip was less than ideal.

Once the decision was made to seek more sheltered harbors (with moorings!) was made, the sun came out and we ended the trip with two calm, sunny, stress-free days for some nice sailing and beautiful snorkeling. At least we ended on an up note. Here are some pics.

Our first night in the BVI, we traveled to the top of Tortola to Sky World for a drink, the beautiful sunset, view of all the islands, and sushi.

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Heather with Peter Island behind her.

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The two captains

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The kids

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Kathy and John

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Beautiful sunset

Sky World is not like it used to be 20 years ago when many tourists traveled the winding, steep road to get up there. It is smaller now, and run by a man who you sense could care less you are there. You have to like sushi for that's what they serve. It is good and you can sit Benihana style and watch it being made in front of you. My recommendation? Go up, have a drink, watch the sunset, then head back down the mountain for your meal.

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Sunrise at Maria's where we spent the night before boarding our sailboat.

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And we're off on a 42' Beneteau chartered out of BVI Yacht Charters.

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Dad's happy

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So is our dingy captain.

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The first night we anchored in White Bay on Peter, a nice bay with good snorkeing but it was raining.

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Kelly and Marc's boat behind us?

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First meal

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Fast forward two days when we leave Roadtown a second time after Heather feels a little better.

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Happy again.

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Captain Pat

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Chef Pat and bloodies after the Bathes

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One of our sunny days (on our way to Marina Key).

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Very happy dad

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Always time for a Stave puzzle!

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Marina Key and Pat's birthday dinner.

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Chrissy, Kathy and Julie enjoyed the triple Pain Killer.

The next day we anchored in White Bay, Jost Van Dyke. We immediately headed to the Sandcastle where Gail and Sana recognized John (from our visit last year), gave him big hugs and a martini! Yes, we love the Sandcastle!

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On the beach and feeling better.

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New Year's Eve and the girls keep the "hat" tradition!

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One looks better in this gear IN the water.


Reading on the boat - the favorite book passed around was Sarah's Key.

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We caught up with sunny weather on Norman Island and decided to anchor in the Bight for two nights. Finally, restful nights of good sleep.

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Sunset

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Blue-water swims

IMG_5488.JPGSailing to Money Bay and the most beautiful snorkeling I've ever seen.

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Happy mom

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Happy couple

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Last sunrise

So we're back home in the cold weather, dreaming of the beautiful blue waters. The BVI will pull us back again...it remains to be seen in what manner.

Things to remember (or not): Allen, pleasantly rude; "Is that a real horse?";"That's Brad Pitt's house."; Brossy Britches and Captain Curmudgeon; Kelly Ripa and Marc Consuelo;the bug; Ivan and Ken; Marichino Bay; Captain Ron; Gertrude's hamburgers; Pain Killers; Money Bay; fan garden; Peebles Hospital; Island time; Peter Island villas; Heathers' hut; Sarah's Key; rdie to Sky World; Catch Phrase; "Heather...that's a category!";pepper in water magic trick.

Check out heathermccurdy.com for some more photos.

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