Archive for the ‘Holidays’ Category


We spent our 4th of July afternoon on the eastern shore of Seneca Lake at Sampson State Park. It was our first time visiting there even though it is only 20 minutes from our front porch.


Our first stop inside the park was the memorial museums remembering the men and women that served our Navy and Air Force during World War II. Over 350,000 military personnel traveled through this site when it was a basic training facility for the Navy and Air Force in the 40’s and 50’s. It was closed as a military base in 1956 and became a state park in the late 60’s. The museum was added in 1995.


Here Nathan checks out the park through the periscope that extends up above the museum.


Sean spent a little while in an F-16 trainer. We met a very nice veteran who explained some of the functions of different things. Apparently once trainees demontrated enough knowledge and skill in the trainer, they get a chance to become a real F-16 pilot. Not very many make it beyond the trainer. Sean got a little concerned when he explained the process of getting ejected from your jet when your plane is going down.


We took a walk down by the docks and marina. It was so windy and choppy on the lake, it looked as though even the sea gulls weren’t sure if they should dare take flight.


Stephanie and Sean holding onto each other so they wouldn’t blow away.


From there we took a few moments to have a snack and play in the picnic area.NateLaxAtSampsonSteveLaxAtSampson

Steve and Nathan had a moment to play Lacrosse. As it turns out the Seneca Indians had a village on this site until the 1600’s when they were run out of town.


No 4th of July would be complete without bundling up and heading out for some pyrotechnics.

We hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday weekend!


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We celebrated Easter in Saratoga Springs in 2009.


Here are the boys all cleaned up and ready for church.


Stephanie’s Mom and Dad treated the family to an Easter brunch in Lake George.


Thanks Mom and Dad.


“Is that a chocolate fondu fountain?”


“Yes, it is a chocolate fondu fountain!”


On the way out of town, Sean was very excited to get a close up look at Fort William Henry. They have been studying the American  Revolution in his classroom. Here are some pictures from the schools website showing the model of a British fort that the class constructed.


We hope you continue to have a wonderful and fruitful Easter Season.

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Our last excursion for the holiday season was a holiday gathering with all of the relatives(Stephanie’s Mom’s family) that live down in New Jersey. We gave Nathan the task of capturing the experience in pictures for us. He took all of the pictures that follow.


This was a great picture of Aunt Susan. If you look closer, he did a masterful job of capturing all of the levels of Christmas cheer occuring in house.


Kyle, Blake and Jeremy checking out their new toys.


A nice moment between Jeremy and his Aunt Katie.


Steve and Uncle Charlie catching up.


I’m not sure what Kyle did, but it looks like he had some explaining to do for Kim, Aunt Linda and Aunt Sharon.


Great photography Nathan!  (Stephanie is holding up Sean.  If it weren’t for the party…he would have been in bed hours ago!)

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Happy New Year!

Well, we took our show on the road to ring in 2009. This year our destination was Steve’s Mom and Dad’s.


As is family tradition, the New Years Eve evening started out with a tribute to the birthday boy in the family.


In all honesty, our “Rockin’ New Years Eve” party started out a little bit slow. Our goal was primarily to try and stay up until mid-night.


I’m not sure, but I think Sean’s confidence in making it to New Years is a little bit shaky in this picture as he checks the clock on the tv.


Carmella was even trying to not-so-subtly tell us that our activities were deviating from our normal routine…”And this isn’t our house?”

When suddenly an unexpected voice of cheer rang out from the recliner.

“I want a shot of Jack and a beer chaser!”


Yes. The party finally came to life. For about 10 minutes things got really crazy.


“Cheers!” Yes everyone made it to the New Year for the first time in our household. Although we don’t believe Sean stayed up much beyond the first fifteen seconds, or so, of the new year. He certainly wasn’t up long enough to be photographed. Nathan on the other hand, might have rung in the new year with California if we had let him. FYI he enjoyed sparkling juice for his toast.


First Kisses of 2009!


“Even after nearly 13 years of marriage I still occasionally have the feeling that my mother is looking over my shoulder when I am kissing Stephanie.” – Steve


We hope you have a healthy and prosperous 2009!

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Christmas 2008

The Christmas Holiday started for our family on Saturday the 20th when we traveled east to visit with Steve’s Mom and Dad.  We had a nice lunch and exchanged gifts.  grandma-and-grandpa


After our visit we rendezvous”ed” with Aunt Susan.  The boys were off from school for the week and were spending the extra time with Aunt Susan and Stephanie’s Mom and Dad. After the children were safely buckled into Aunt Susan’s car, we had the opportunity to take care of a few last minute details for the Christmas holiday and enjoy an extended 4 day “date!”

We made our way back east to Saratoga on Christmas Eve, arriving at Christmas Eve Mass right on time – (we really did!).  Later we left out a plate of cookies and some reindeer food and a note from Nathan.  It looks like Santa found everything just fine.

Thank you Santa

And despite the fog and these economic times Santa Claus came through. Although he did have some logistical issues to overcome.  Below Sean reads a letter from Santa explaining what his Elves were up to overnight.


As you can see by Sean’s expression, he was pleased with their work.  He was even heard saying “I do believe, I do believe!” 


As it turns out Santa and his elves took the intiative to deliver a ping pong table to our home while we were in Saratoga, and installed WiFi to enhance the boys video game experiences. “Wow! Cool!”


Another gift highlight was an electric guitar from Grandma and Grandpa. Uh oh… he looks like a natural.


Here Nathan tries his hand at Wii tennis.  If any of you have the capacity to play Nintendo games online we will have to let you talk to Sean about trying to figure out how to play together. The boys have been having fun playing Mario Kart with other people from around the globe.




The gifts from Sean and Nathan brought smiles to Susan and Dave’s faces.



It was great having the extended holiday in Saratoga.


Grandpa didn’t have to ask Nathan twice if he was interested in going for a ride on the four wheeler.




In fact, he even had a chance to drive all by himself for the very first time! (Oh my goodness!!!)


Just like that, it seemed like the time in Saratoga had flown by and we were loaded up and on the road home.  Everyone was a little tired from all the action – including Miss Carmella!


As soon as we got home the boys rushed down to our basement to see where Santa had placed the ping pong table.  It was so exciting! Steve became a little nostalgic hearing the pinging and ponging coming up from the basement.

This week we are taking a brief pause as we are both off from work for a few days before we resume our Christmas/New Year’s 2008 tour. We will keep you posted.

We hope you had a wonderful Christmas too!

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We felt inspired to have our own blessing of our Christmas tree after a Christmas tree blessing was incorporated into our Sunday liturgy today. We appointed Nathan the role of officiating our family ceremony as he genuinely enjoys filling this role for our family. Above he guides us in prayer.


After reading the prayer he had the honor of dipping a piece of bow from the tree in our holy water and completing the ceremony as we illuminated the lights. Below, we took our blessing into the front room where we have a little tabletop tree.  The beautiful tree topper angel on the little tree was made by Sean in art class.




our God,

The heavens are

the work of your hands

the moon and the stars you


the earth and the sea, and every

living creature came into being

by your word. And all of us too.

May this tree bring cheer to this house

through Jesus Christ your good and holy son,

who brings life

and beauty to us

and to our world.

Lighting this tree, we hope in his promise.

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Halloween Fun

This Past Sunday we made our way to the local pumpkin patch to get into the spirit of the Halloween Season.


The first step in the pumpkin carving process is Steve going to the internet for a little inspiration.

After the patterns are printed it is the painstaking process of tracing the pattern onto the pumpkin. Here Nathan is doing a great job.

Once the tracing is done, it is on to the carving. We discovered how well these little carving tools work a few years ago. It ends up making the whole process a lot easier and safer for everyone.

Here is Nathan’s finished product. This type of project is right up Nathan’s alley. He did the whole thing by himself.

This is the pattern that Sean set out to complete. He got “happy” done all on his own before he called in some reinforcments. This type of project wouldn’t generally be the first thing that Sean would choose to do, but he always seems to have a good time once he gets rolling.

Stephanie took a somewhat non-traditional approach with her pumpkin.

Steve tried to capture the penguins from the movie Madegascar in his pumpkin. He has carved some pretty challenging pre-designed pumpkins in the past, but he created his own pattern from a picture for this one.

What a great day of halloween fun.

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