Tag Archives: kentucky

The longest trip of my life…

Does that sound negative? I’m sure I didn’t mean it that way… but this is going to be a very long post (with lots of pictures). My mom and sister were planning a trip to Kentucky to visit their two best friends (also a mother and daughter) and they invited me and Madison to tag along. Since they have both been out there a few times, they also gave me the authority to plan a few things to do while we were out there. That was probably a bad idea for them, but it worked out great for me! We did get to do a LOT of stuff and we did have a really good time.

Since my parents live in Kansas, we headed up there on Thursday afternoon, then left for Kentucky Friday morning. On the way, we stopped at Whiteman AFB in Missouri, which is where I used to live. I told my mom, if you all get to visit your best friends, surely we can stop and visit one of mine? It wasn’t too far out of the way… and we got to eat lunch at one of my all time favorite resturants, Oriental Cuisine. I left my camera in the car, but lucky my good friend Stacy not only took pictures, but also emailed them to me! She has five adorable kids now, and Madison absolutely LOVED playing with them – even though she didn’t remember who they were. We moved away from Missouri when she was two.

On Saturday, we continued the trip to Louisville and on Sunday we went to the Louisville Slugger Museum, which – to my great surprise – was very fun. They have a gigantic baseball bat out front that you can take a picture with, and each visitor gets a free mini bat.

Monday we went to visit the state capitol in Frankfort, which was about an hour drive. That takes our state capitol count up to eight! Not too shabby. The inside was actually closed for Memorial Day but we knocked on the door and a security guard let us in to look around. Madison said that he probably let us in because she’s so cute, but it could have been that he’s never seen a four year old so excited to visit the capitol…

We also took a tour of the Rebecca Ruth Candy Company, which was featured on the Food Network. They are famous for their bourbon balls, but I did not like them. I did try to refrain from spitting mine out since Madison and my sister already had.

Then in the afternoon, we drove to Shaker Village for lunch. It is a very neat place, kind of Colonial Williamsburg like, and if you are into that sort of stuff and in the area, I would recommend a visit. Definitely bring money for the gift shop. It was really neat.

On Tuesday, I went to King’s Island (without Madison). I saw them on the Travel Channel and have been wanting to go for so long. I know Madison would have really enjoyed it, but without Matt or my mom along to help with her, I didn’t think I should bring her. She is still too short for almost everything thing there, but we had an awesome time and I would bring her back someday if she likes rollercoasters (like me). It was about a 2 hour drive from Louisville, but definitely worth it. It was sprinkling most of the day and the kids up there were still in school, so it wasn’t busy at all and we had a great time.

On Wednesday, we went to the Kentucky Derby Museum and toured Churchill Downs. Horses are not really my thing, but the tour was neat. And Madison read a sign while we were there! I was so proud of her – I didn’t prompt her or anything. It only said “No food or drink” but she read it on her own, then said “Mom come here! I can read this sign! I know the word no and the word or, and I sounded out food and drink!” She was so excited and I was so excited.

Thursday was our last day and we crammed it full – we went to Schimpff’s Candy Store, Lynn’s Paradise Cafe, the Louisville Glassworks, and the Waterfront Park. I loved Schimpff’s. They make red hot candy, and if you go in at the right time, you can watch them make it and taste one while it’s still warm – and they are so good. I am already hoping they ship to Japan because my tin is almost gone. They were featured on the History Channel on Modern Marvels.

Lynn’s Paradise Cafe was featured on the Food Network on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. You are going to think all I do is watch TV, but I didn’t even know about these last two until they told us. I do love Throwdown with Bobby Flay though. I ordered the Kentucky something Scramble, which is what they made for the show and it was SOOOOOO good. Looked disgusting, but it was really tasty.

The other two places, the Glassworks and the Waterfront Park were okay. Fun, but I’d skip them next time. I thought Madison would like the glassblowing more, but maybe she was a little burnt out by the time we got there. And she was probably all sugared up from the candy store. I spent more money on candy on this trip than anything else I think… except gas, but let’s not go there…

I think I can safely say I’ve done Louisville.

Now be honest – you thought that was the end didn’t you? Nope. On the way home, we also stopped at the Arch in Saint Louis. Not sure what I expected there but it didn’t live up to my expectations. To get to the top, you ride in tiny little pods. Then when you get up to the top, you can look out the window. That’s it. And it was so full of sweaty people and general stinkiness, I was ready to go as soon as I peeked out one window. I am glad I did it, but I don’t think I need to do it again. Ever.

And now I’m done. And you can understand why this was a great trip, but also the longest. trip. of. my. life.

PS – you can review the rest of the picture from my trip (all 248 items!) at Flickr.

Back from Kentucky (and other ramblings)…

We officially got back into town on Sunday night, but it seems like I have needed the last two days to recover from 11 days away from home…  It’s cliche, but I really did need a vacation from my vacation.  I am planning to post pictures from the trip tomorrow.  For now, I’ll just say we had a really great time, did some really fun things, but I am so glad to be home.

This is the longest break we have had from homeschooling since we started. I tried to schedule our other vacations so we still had half weeks of school and I always took work for us to do at the airport, but this time, we drove and we were gone for a longer period of time.  When we started with school again yesterday, it was hard to get back into it – especially reading.  And we are going to be going out of town again next week for about 5 days.  I have toyed with the idea of just taking a break for the summer, with the vacations we have scheduled and our upcoming move to Japan, but I really don’t want to do that, especially after seeing what happens after a week break.  I am going to try to keep going with a toned down schedule until we actually get to Japan (which I have an update on…  keep reading 🙂 )

I think part of our problem getting back into the routine this week is swimming lessons.  I signed Madison up for lessons which started yesterday.  They are in the morning and by the time we get home, the morning is gone, I am starving for lunch and it is really hard to start school.  BUT… she loves her lessons so far.  We go everyday for the next two weeks for this class, and I plan to keep signing her up until we move.

And now, the news you have all been waiting for – or at least the news I have been waiting for… since December…  After being in Oklahoma for more than six months (two months longer than expected), Matt told me yesterday that we are almost done here – it looks like we will be done the beginning of July.   Then we will spend a few weeks with family in Kansas and Matt will leave for Japan the end of July.  Madison and I will have to wait for Matt to find us a house since the lodging on base there is being renovated, and then we will come over, hopefully sometime in August.  Part of me is saying “YEAH!” and the other part has really started to like Oklahoma and the proximity to our family.  And a big part of me is not looking forward to being homeless for a good chunk of the summer…

But today I cycled into “move” mode.  I made a list.  I ordered Vonage phone service, since we are able to use that in Japan if we set it up before we move.  I sorted Madison’s toys into keep/sell/give piles.  I cleaned out the hall closet.  I started to figure out what I can make with the groceries I have left and planned to give our apartment notice tomorrow.  I really REALLY started to get excited.  I mean, as much as I like OKC, I am ready to get to Japan.  I am ready to have all my stuff back and be able to paint my walls.

Then Matt came home and told me there was another delay.  But hopefully, even with that delay, we are still on the same schedule.  I’ll let you know (and hopefully it will be soon, but this is the Air Force, so…)

So, we are back from vacation and getting back into our groove.  Don’t forget to look for pictures tomorrow!