Ferncliff Trail presides in Ohiopyle State Park near where I grew up in southwestern PA. My dad shocked me one morning by letting me in on the secret that he had never hiked the short two-mile loop so we set off for a quick morning hike along it’s dirt path. Kratos and I got to stretch our legs before another long car ride and Dad got to put another check mark on his bucket list.
Spending so much time in DC has its advantages:
I get to hang out with my super awesome husband whom I wasn’t expecting to see much of during this time.
I get to photograph lots of historic and beautiful places that I otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to. AND I talked said super awesome husband into a quick walkthrough of the National Zoo just so I could a Panda Bear in real life for the first time. Thanks for that super awesome husband.
My brother invited me to Opening Day for my nephews baseball season as it was a double header. I was already in PA visiting friends so it was a short trip in to Maryland for their first double header of the season. Although it was snowing, they pulled off wins for both games! Keep up the good work guys!
Needing an excuse to go to Pittsburgh I called a friend up and asked her to try out a new (to me) sushi restaurant in the ‘Burgh. I’ve been dying to finally try out the sushi burritos I’ve been seeing trending all over social media. Sushi Fuku in Oakland was every bit as delicious as I had dreamed and after eating my body weight in salmon, avocado, and soy sauce I hugged my friend goodbye and headed to the Pittsburgh Zoo with camera in hand. My FitBit and I agreed that a few hours trekking around the zoo before sitting in the car for the three hour drive back to Columbus was much needed.
I had just enough time to do some laundry when I returned to Ohio before we packed the Jeep back up and headed south. This time both my Seester & Karley were also packed into the Jeep with me as well.
My niece has never seen the ocean before, so our first stop was straight to the beach to get our toes in the sand and spent as much time there as the weather would allow on our short trip.
During the frequent periods of rain we headed off to see the rest of the sights of the area including the Blue Angels, Fort Pensacola, & more!
Technically we’re spending the next few months doing our own thing, but unlike deployments of past we actually get to talk (& Facetime) on a daily basis and on visit in person every once in a while. This weekend both Brian & I had free so we met up in Washington DC for a weekend of sight seeing with my cousins who live nearby.
Brian wasn’t free from work until later so I dropped Kratos off with my dad & headed out to suburbia Virginia where I spent the better part of the weekend catching up with my cousin & her family (including new husband Craig and baby Talia, who I hadn’t had the pleasure of meeting yet since their arrival into our family – the kinds of things you miss when you live in Alaska). When he was able to meet up I skipped off to hang out with my main man, even stealing a few hours of alone time with him for a dinner and movie date.
When I was a kid my dad built a small bird garden just outside the big picture windows of our living room. On any given day he could sit at those windows for hours watching the birds flit about. It wasn’t until much more recently that I began to appreciate the garden for everything it brought within a few feet of those windows.
My brother & his family now live in the house we grew up in (his kids are the 6th generation in our family to grow up on that land). On my most recent visit back to my childhood home I too took some time to appreciate the beauty of the birds who were hanging around around that day.