Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hellllllo, Long Lost Friends!

Ok, so I know it has been F.O.R.E.V.E.R. since I posted, technically 26 days, but let me just tell you, a TON has happened in those days. I will catch you up on all the fun, I promise, but for now, here's a quick sneak peek:

St. Petersburg High School's 2013 Relay for Life
Lakeview Fundamental's 5th Grade Party
My niece Morgan's 14th birthday shopping trip
My first trip ever to the Mother Ship!
So, as you can see it has been a super busy month. With my oldest busy with spring activities at school, finishing up projects and studying for exams, her schedule is never dull. My youngest is "graduating" the 5th grade (10 years of my life have been dedicated to this elementary school!!), and she has more field trips and award ceremonies than should be legal! Needless to say, the month has been crazy, but it's all good!

Details on all the fun events to come, but that is for another post!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Trains, Carriages and Lots of Walking . . .

Ok, so I mentioned in my last blog post that I was taking my Girl Scouts to Savannah, Georgia, to visit the Juliette Low House (founder of Girl Scouts for those of you who don't know) and I am just now starting to get back to a normal routine!

So last Friday we all played hooky from school and headed to the train station in Tampa for a weekend of fun.

Liv and her "buddy", Taylor, waiting for the bus that takes us to the train - in Orlando!
GS Troop 824 waiting for the bus.
I never realized how beautiful this train station was. 
Waiting for the train with some fun games.
The train is finally here!
We were all thrilled with the cleanliness of the train
and the amount of legroom.
You could barely reach the seat in front of you!
After arriving in Savannah and checking in to our hotel, we walked up to River Street to eat dinner. We chose Five Guys and Fries and boy, did that hit the spot! We took a little walk by the river and then headed back to our hotel for a busy day tomorrow.

After a great breakfast buffet, we took a walk around some of the squares. 
The famous Mercer House for those of you familiar
with the book "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil".
After our quick tour of some of the Savannah squares,
we headed back to our hotel for a pool and pizza party.
Being a Girl Scout event, we had to have a lifeguard,
which made me and the other moms happy!
I just love this shot!
After showering and having a nail painting party,
we all put on our matching troop shirts and headed out.
Aren't they the cutest 14 girls you've ever seen?
I still look a little awake in this photo.
Wait 'til later after three nights with 14 girls!
After selling ALL those Girl Scout cookies,
we deserved a splurge and had the buffet dinner at
Paula Deen's Lady & Sons.
Yes, it was all as good as it looks.
Yes, there is a little green on my plate (under the fried chicken and mac & cheese).
The girls devoured the buffet.
We were in a separate area, off the main dining hall, and we had the room
to ourselves, and our own buffet. That worked out
perfectly because the girls could be a little loud and not disturb everyone!
We had fantastic service by Elaine and her crew
and will definitely be back again.
We had to drag ourselves out of Lady & Sons and
head to the Savannah Candy Kitchen for a tour and tasting.
The girls favorite part was watching the taffy being made and
then the workers throwing candy to everyone.
After getting the girls good and sugared up,
we headed back to the hotel for some very much needed R & R.
The girls in my room ready for the next day.
All the girls look dapper in their uniforms -
see, they do clean up nicely!
When we arrived at the Juliette Low House, I had to check in and they sent the girls on a scavenger hunt in the park with the other mom chaperones. After I was done, I was able to get a Diet Coke and sit in the gardens for about 15 minutes by myself. The birds were chirping, church bells were ringing and my caffeinated drink was bubbling. Life was good (and quiet!). Then the little darlings came back and we started our tour. We learned about Juliette Low's life and the founding of Girl Scouts. The girls were very impressed with what an amazing woman she was and felt very proud to be a part of her legacy. Next on our agenda was a tour of the house.

After the tour, we held our pinning ceremony in the gardens.
The girls pinned each other with a pin you only can purchase if you
have toured the house.
I loved this moment and got teary-eyed watching it.
The girls went around the Circle of Friends and each stated what
being a Girl Scout meant to them.
Then we sung taps and did the hand-squeeze.
Saying the Girl Scout promise and law.
Girl Scout Junior Troop 824
After lunch in the park, we headed back to the house
for our afternoon activity. - Games from the Past.
I was not sure how this was going to go because of the
girls' addictions with electronics (we allowed them on
the train but once we get to Savannah, we collected
all electronics and did not give them back until the night before we
left so they could charge them) but all these games
and crafts were a big hit!
Don't you love the "throwback" outfits?
Especially with the Converse?

We played charades, told stories, learned etiquette, made
yarn dolls and just had a great time!
Liv's voodooish doll!

After we finished at the JL House, we headed down to the river for some
dinner and shopping. We had a great meal and service
at the River House.
The girls on those wonky Savannah steps.
(I did rotate this photo but for the love of God,
cannot get it to show that change on this post,
so it is what it is!.
Found a man making balloon animals while waiting for
our Haunted Horse & Carriage tour.
Our beautiful horses.

Waiting for the train to take us home, after a super early 5 a.m. wake-up call!
All-in-all, it was a fantastic trip filled with lots of laughter, great food and wonderful memories. I hope all the girls remember what a fun time they had with all their Girl Scout friends (and leaders) and will look forward to bringing their own daughters here.

Needless to say, between this trip and another Relay for Life last night, I did not get much done around the house (but I did make A.N.O.T.H.E.R. trip to Pier 1) but that is for another post!