Sunday, April 28, 2013

Spring For Changes

 Spring time is bringing lots of changes to the Baird Family.    Natalie is living at home now after graduating from the AVEDA institute in Provo, and passing her state board exam.  She now has a Virginia license, and a job at Beau Totale, a salon in Burke, as an assistant.   She turned 21 on April 6.  We had a little family gathering to celebrate and honor her.

Spring is bringing changes to the Ryan Baird family.   Lillian is going to have a brother!   We're being told his name is Royden.   Lillian has no idea what that change means to her.  She's still figuring out what it means to be Lillian.     Dara has been sick, and we got to help take care of Lillian and Dara at our house for awhile.   We enjoyed walks outside (Walking is a big change for her!), watching her favorite shows on TV, playing playmobil people, and trying new foods. 

She showed Grandpa how she can dance!

We're looking forward to Ryan's graduation from UVA May 19th, which is the prelude to even more change for their family as they look for a new job, as well as welcoming a new baby.

Kara's middle name is change, and this spring brought another change of address for her.   She is living in the Phoenix area now, after spending a couple of months with her aunt Jamie in Colorado.   She already has a job at Red Robin, with the prospect of a couple more part time jobs as well.   She's planning to go to aesthetician school in August, to help make her even more marketable as a spa specialist.

Laura and Kart's family are coping with their family changes in Orem.  Aiden turned 7 on April 23rd,  and Laura keeps busy with Emma (5) and Owen (3) at home.  They're looking forward to the change of Kart going from student status to college graduate! 

Skip and I are looking forward to a week long spring trip to Las Vegas to see Beth.   We're excited to see her conduct her high school orchestra in their spring concert.   After a visit with her, we'll drive to Utah for a little visit with Laura and family in Utah.

Keeping busy at Forest Park High School isn't much of a change for me, with festival, then a trip to Atlanta for a Heritage Music Festival.   The kids did amazing, and brought home 3 trophies.   We had fun enjoying the Atlanta sights such as the aquarium, the Martin Luther King sight, and Six Flags.   It was a change though when I decided to take on  playing keyboard in the pit for the spring musical - CAMELOT!   It was a challenge to spend extra time at school for a week, but it was worth the effort to help them put on a great show.

Camelot Cast

My piano students will be featured in my studio recital May 18th.   They've been working hard on being ready to perform for that.   Five of my students have earned festival trophies this year!

Skip's big change is his new passion for creating beautiful pottery pieces!   He has enjoyed getting back into this art that he discovered back in his college days.   He's created several beautiful pieces already, and doesn't want to stop!   

Today in church we had an announcement about another change coming our way.  They're going to create another ward in our stake!   There will be a meeting next week for the three wards involved where we'll find out what the new ward and it's boundaries will be.   

Change is exciting!   I can hardly wait to see what the next season brings!

Anniversary Trip

This year's anniversary trip was a three day, two night getaway from home, seeing a few things we'd never seen before in Virginia and Maryland.   We started by driving south on 95 to Fredericksburg, then east along Highway 3 to Stratford plantation, home of the Lee's of Virginia.   It is the birthplace of Robert E. Lee, the civil war general, but he never owned it or lived in it after the short time he spent there as a child.   It was nicely restored and preserved mostly because of the connection to him though.  

We had a beautiful, although a bit chilly spring weekend to enjoy time inside and out of this large plantation home.

There were some interesting looking chickens wandering around on the grounds.

Skip tried to make friends with one.

It was a short drive down to the Potomac River.   It was quite cold then, and we were tired and ready to be on our way, so we just got out to take a picture.   The cliffs in this area and all around are full of fossils from a time when this area was an ocean.  

 Our destination was Solomon's Island, Maryland.  We had reservations at a Bed and Breakfast there called the Back Creek Inn.   It was a beautiful location with a boat dock near the water.  The owner name is Carol Pennock, and she's an artist that had many of her paintings on display and for sale around the different rooms.   The first night we had a suite on the ground floor, then an upstairs room with a view of the water for the next night.   (Same room was not available both nights.)   Solomon's is located where the Patuxent River meets the Cheasapeake Bay.   We got checked in and had time to rest before heading out to dinner.

Here we are at the restaurant - specializing in seafood of course!   I had crab cakes, and Skip had surf and turf.  

The sunrise at the Inn was incredible.   So glad I made the effort to get up and enjoy it!   There's a river walk in town along the river with signs every few feet that talk about the history that happened there.  That made for a nice morning walk.     

We spent the later morning at the local marine museum, enjoying exhibits on local boatbuilding, wildlife, the prehistoric aspect of the area, a playful otter exhibit, and a ray and skate pool.

We tried another local restaurant for lunch and then went to check out a local sculpture garden.   You don't usually see anything like this outside of a big city.   It was a beautiful setting and featured several large and some smaller sculptures or art installations - mostly modern.

It was a half mile loop to see everything.   The evening we spent at the Inn and ordered pizza.  The next morning brought another spectacular sunrise.   We headed out around 11:00 and made a stop at a nearby park, where we could wander the bay shore and look for fossils and other treasures.   I enjoyed getting my feet a little wet too!  (Sporting my new pedicure.  We both got pedicures the day before too!) 

It was a fun weekend, full of relaxation, beauty, good food, learning about where we live, and enjoying time away from our routine to celebrate the two of us!