Saturday, November 15, 2008

Elkridge, MD

Nov 15
It’s a quiet Saturday morning, and everything is so familiar as I look out our “dining room” window. We’re parked at Scott and Sharon’s house, next to our old house at the end of River Birch Ct in Maryland. We lived here for 5 years, which is when Ben and Sam were born. It’s wonderful seeing the Zelnoskys, Kietas, Seemans, Gilligans, Giffords, Ruckers, Ritters, Brockmans, Dabecks, Synders, Lindermans, Hayes, Gerus, and so many other neighbors and friends. The boys are having a ball playing with their old buddies. Yesterday, Robby asked if we could visit his teachers and principal at Elkridge Elem where he attended Kindergarten-3rd grade. He enjoyed surprising Dr. Mumford, Mrs. Herman, Mrs. Fales, Mrs. Fastman, and Ms. Lloyd, and we had a good time catching up with everyone.
On our way here, we stopped at Calvert School’s offices north of Baltimore. Thank you Cecilia, Pam, Martha, Joan, and all the staff we met on that rainy day. We enjoyed our tour, and the boys love their Calvert baseball caps. Robby thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Mrs. Clark. We’re so sorry we missed Mrs. McMahon and apologize for not linking up on the 2nd visit. Thom forgot how much travel time to plan for given it was a Friday afternoon and raining. One more reason to miss Delta Junction and to look for somewhere less crowded. Calvert is a first rate homeschooling program and now that we’ve seen their offices and staff, we are even more delighted with our choice to go with their curriculum. The boys finished up their 2nd round of testing last week and have been diligent with their studies.
We spent 10 days at Eric and Terry’s home just west of here an hour. The kids played daily together, and we had school 5 days a week making good progress. Thanks to Eric and Terry for all the good meals, laundry facilities, showers, etc. Under Uncle Thom’s tutoring, Lauren progressed out of training wheels and now rides her big girl bike on 2 wheels. Duncan is close to doing the same! Erin tried out roller blading, and Thom took the boys ice skating twice.
We headed up to Gettysburg and spent a beautiful Saturday at the new Visitors’ Center and of course driving the battle field. Wow! Thom’s been there before and was a terrific guide with his West Point education touring us around. We all learned so much. Did you know that the South produced 75% of the world’s cotton at that time? Slavery of course was important to their economy. What we didn’t know is that the war occurred over whether the slavery should be allowed in the new territories to the west. If the territories had not brought the issue to a head, there is no telling how long it would have continued. Soldiers came from all over, including California and Utah. The 3-day battle involved more casualties than any other on American soil for a total of 51,000! The visitors’ center shows a fabulous 22 minute movie, which really holds the boys’ attention. Moments like these confirm to Thom and me why this trip is so important and we hope they remember these historic places. Given the historic election of Senator Obama to President, Gettysburg was particularly interesting and important.
We tied in a visit with our Alaskan friends, the Rennhack’s, who now live in Chambersburg, PA. Dawn cooked up a big spaghetti dinner while the kids played as though it was just yesterday when we last saw them. Then they treated us to a fun fall festival party at Darby and Darwin’s school nearby. Once again, it was great catching up with old friends. We also enjoyed visiting with the Sunderlys; Brian, Deni, Cameron, and Samantha in nearby Germantown. Brain was our pastor when we lived in Elkridge, and we enjoyed a bible study with the Sunderlys and several other families. The kids played like it had only been 5 days, not 5 years, and really enjoyed getting caught up with all Brian and Deni have been doing over the past few years. It was wonderful to see them healthy, happy and flourishing.
Another family we were thrilled to see again was the Hilldreth’s. We drove up to Carlisle, PA where Ted is attending the War College. We last saw each other in June as we departed Ft. Greely, where we were neighbors for 2 years. The boys enjoyed playing again with Ashley, Allison, and Aimee while Ted, Kristie, Pat, Thom, and I caught up. Our timing was great to see Pat, Kristie’s Mom, visiting from Alabama. We all went bowling, and although I didn’t break 100, we had a good time (not sure about the bowling league right next to us!)
From here, we’d like to catch a Space A flight out of Dover, DE or Baltimore. We’ve never done this as a family, and now is a great time to take advantage of this terrific military benefit. It’s virtually a free flight to Spain, Germany, Iceland, or wherever the military is flying that day. So if you don’t hear from us for a couple weeks, we’re probably in Europe!

1 comment:

Paul said...

Glad you could spend a couple of days in your ol' hood. Louise and I really enjoyed your visit...remember, there are plenty of homes for sale around here :) I'm impressed you got the RV out of the court too!