The city of Jacksonville has an annual Christmas tree lighting and a lighted boat parade every year on the weekend after Thanksgiving, so we headed down to the Jacksonville Landing Saturday evening to see the many nicely lit boats. There was also the most spectacular fireworks show we've ever seen. The river is sandwiched between two bridges and somehow they managed to shoot fireworks to make it look like a beautiful waterfall was flowing from the bridges to the water. We bought ourselves a little 3 foot Frasier fur Christmas tree and decorated it for the holidays. Bruce couldn't pass up this helicopter Santa that our local Lowe's had on sale for the holidays (see pics).
We spent a quiet Thanksgiving in Kingsland, Georgia. I picked Bruce up at the Jacksonville airport on Wednesday night and spent a wonderful evening out in the city. Thanksgiving day was spent playing football with the boys and the dog while mom made a Thanksgiving meal of turkey, sweet potatoes, brussels sprout casserole, dressing, biscuits, mashed potatoes and apple pies (thanks to slow cooker and organization). We did school throughout the week, except Thursday, so that we can have time off school for upcoming field trips.
Our next home has been in Kingsland, Georgia (about 35 miles north of Jacksonville, Florida). We decided to pay for the month (much cheaper), and we've been here for 2 weeks so far. The RV park is in the heart of the city and owned by a hotel next door. The boys have been swimming almost daily at the hotel as the weather has been beautiful so far. The kids and I have enjoyed getting to know the area, sample the local treats (peach cider and pralines) while buckling down on our book work.
Today, we decided to take a break and visit the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens(one of our favorite places to go). This is really a lovely zoo to visit. There are a lot of hands on exhibits; something Parker enjoys; Hunter, not so much. You can walk through an aviary where the birds are roaming free and Hunter was brave enough to buy food to feed them. Unfortunately, once he walked into the area with his little container of nectar...........well, you've all seen Alfred Hitchcocks' movie titled "The Birds"? He's going to have nightmares for some time. :-(
We are so blessed. Bruce is able to join us for Thanksgiving this year (a challenge for me to make the meal in the RV). We also plan to visit the Cumberland Island National Seashore which is 16 miles of white sand beach undisturbed (no stores, t-shirt shops, restaurants or hotels), where wild horses graze openly on the marshes and forest area. I can't wait!
We're still here! We decided to stay another day to let the nasty weather pass. Got a bunch of school done, hope we don't float away.
We've been staying in beautiful Stone Mountain Georgia for a couple of days now. We were able to see Jennifer (Bruce's cousin) and meet her husband Bill for the first time last night at a Mexican restaurant. It was great to see family again. Today, after doing a little bit of school work, we headed out to the Georgia Aquarium. It is the largest aquarium in the United States. We all enjoyed seeing and touching these amazing sea animals. It looks like we'll be changing our plans about heading south tomorrow, as there is a hurricane threatening the area, so we're keeping a close eye on it and will need to re-assess tomorrow.
We arrived in Myrtle Beach Thursday night and after a bit of school work Friday morning we decided it was time for a break. We headed out to play miniature golf, where Hunter beat us all, helped out by THREE holes in one! We then went to the beach where the boys built sand castles and collected sea shells. They even went into the water which was pretty cold. Later Bruce took the boys out to play laser tag for the first time and had a blast! We spent the evening doing a bit of shopping at the outlet mall and had some ice cream. I don't know if we needed Ice Cream since it is supposed to get into the mid thirties tonight but.... Tomorrow we're planning on leaving for Atlanta, GA but there sure is a lot to do here. We'll have to come back someday.
Well of course being the aviator in the family, no trip to the east coast would be complete without a trip to Kitty Hawk, the Wright Brothers Memorial and First Flight Museum. We stayed at a nice campground on Roanoke Island, once home to the Lost Roanoke Colony. While at the museum we attended a short lecture on the events leading up to the first powered flight, which was quite interesting. There were replicas of the Wright Flier and one of their early gliders. Outside on the grounds you can see monuments which mark the take off and landing points of the first four flights. We also walked to the top of the hill upon which the Wright Brothers Memorial stands. (It's a long way!) There is a great view of the beach, the museum grounds and First Flight Airport. There are some pictures of the boys climbing on and around a life size replica of the First Flight.
We spent Tuesday in Colonial Williamsburg and Jamestown Virginia. The workers there all dress in period clothing, and the town is very much the same as it would have been at that time. We went into many of the stores and shops and the boys were interested in seeing and playing with the toys that entertained the children of the 18th Century. In Jamestown we visited the first settlement museum, which had a good movie that explained the whole history of the Jamestown settlement and the Powhatan Indians. There is a Powhatan Indian village and a re-creation of the fort. They also have copies of the ships that the colonists came over on. In the evening we drove down to the North Carolina coast to Kitty Hawk.
We decided to take another shot at the Skyline drive today since the weather was so poor two days ago. It was a bit rainy in the morning but by noon it had cleared up nicely and we headed off to drive the middle section of the parkway. We drove from Luray to Elkton about 35 miles. We saw several deer along the way and one beautiful view after another. We tried to take some pictures but as you can imagine they just don't do it justice. We (the boys) did some rock climbing along the way and Jedi seemed to enjoy the fresh mountain air as well.