Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Why are the ponies so big in Chincoteague?

On our way from St. Micheals to Avon we decided to drive the eastern shore and pass through all those islands separating Virginia from the Atlantic. We decided to spend the night in Chincoteague and site see a little.
In case you weren't aware, Chincoteague is the host of an annual Pony Swim and auction which is a fund raiser for the local fire department. Every year, the healthiest wild ponies are rounded up on the island of Assateague and made to swim a very short distance to the island of Chincoteague were zillions of people come to watch and then purchase the ponies. What these people do with a wild pony is anyone's guess. I suppose the put them out to pasture. I suspect that many of these "wild" ponies are a little more tame than wild so maybe they make nice pets.
Needless to say, the pony theme runs rampant in the town. The local businesses and government milk it for all it's worth. I happen to like ponies so I didn't really mind. The real wild ponies reside on a Federal Nature Reserve on the island of Assateague. On our way to the reserve we asked Holly to count all the ponies she could see (meaning pony signs). She was getting restless in the car so we thought a fun counting activity would keep her happy. Subconsciously, I had begun counting as well. When we got to the bridge over the channel separating Chinc from Ass I asked Holly how many ponies she counted. She said two. I had counted at least 30 so I was surprised her keen eyes only counted two. I questioned her further and discovered that she thought she was supposed to be counting REAL ponies and that she saw two at McDonalds. Yes folks... even the local McDonalds is in on the pony action.
We paid our car fee and entered the park. We saw a nice old lighthouse, drove to the Assateague beach and searched for real wild ponies. I half expected to see them all over the place, like heards of deer in the Shenandoah. We didn't see a single one. They had a nice welcome center and museum.
Disappointed we decided to head over to the Pony Center which is a gift shop/pony stable in Chincoteague. There we saw several captive wild ponies. All of them supposedly descended from the famed Misty. After seeing the ponies at the pony center, I have to say I'm glad we didn't run into any of them in the wild while walking in the park because teeny cutie pie ponies they are not. They're friggin' huge!!! Small horses, really. Definitely ridable... (Is ridable a word?)
We then realized that we were hot and starving and decided to try out an ice cream place I visited as a teen. We each got a cone of fab home made ice cream at the Island Creamery. The wait was rather long but soooo worth it.
Finally we decided that we were not leaving Chincoteague without first seeing a wild pony, in the wild. We drove to the park where the ponies arrive after the swim. With the binoculars we scanned the Assateague coast line and there they were. Running wild.. the very large ponies/small horses. We left happy.

ETA.. Don't forget your mosquito repellent!!!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Monday Morning Update

Since I've discovered the Travel Buddy site I've neglected this blog somewhat.
Two of my most recent blogs require updates.
1. The Porch Fawn
It wasn't looking good for a while. We read that mothers will often leave their babies for the day and return to feed them at night. Although my mom is a great babysitter, her cluttered front porch was a strange choice for the doe. The first night, a doe came into the yard to munch on the garden, the baby ran to the doe but it was rejected. The doe kicked at the baby when it tried to nurse. At this point we were still undecided on whether this doe was the mother or not. We gave the baby one more night. By morning, something had picked it up. We're hoping it was the real mother. Here is a pic of its super cuteness.

2. The paranormal events of last Wed.
The farther from the night of the spookfest the sillier the whole tale seems. The more I think about that night the more I wonder, "What DID I eat before I went to bed that night?" I have worked out rational scenarios for each ghostly event.
a. The wall breaching child ghost who ran into my daughters room - I'm a loon who doesn't get enough sleep and should probably get my eyes checked.
b. Pounding footsteps heard while in the basement - Overweight flying squirrel? We have colonies in the attic, though they usually find new homes in the heat of the summer.
c. The "Dead" voice - I must have been nearly asleep and misinterpret the loud snorty snore of my husband.
d. The scratching in the walls - My feet are horribly callused and make a very similar sound when rubbed against my satiny bedspread.

I'm happy with these explanations, esp since I haven't heard a peep since that night, although I did get the bejeezus scared out of me when the friggin' cat decided to leap over my head into the bed Thursday night. I woke to see a grey blur flying over the bed and nearly peeped myself.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Ghost or Squirrel or Ghostsquirrel

We have lived in this house for about 1.5 years and I have never been as afraid as I was last night.
There have been times when I thought I saw "something" out of the corner of my eye. In every case, the image evaporated as quickly as it appeared and I brushed off the whole event.
My evening began with a similar experience. I was putting the kids to bed when out of the corner of my eye I saw a small child run into my daughter's room. I thought it was my three year old son, Simon, out of bed and it didn't concern me much until I remembered my daughter's door was closed. Hrmmmm
So, I checked on the kids and put went to the basement confident that my son was in a deep sleep. Once in the basement I heard the familiar thump, thump, thump of my son's feet racing across the hardwood floor. My husband, Steve, groaned and said "Simon's up."
So, I went upstairs to put him back in bed and found him exactly as I had left him; asleep and breathing deeply. I checked on my daughter and found her near sleep. She hadn't been up recently. Even the cat was asleep on my bed as he was when I was folding laundry earlier that evening.
I returned to the basement and gave Steve the lowdown. He then became convinced there was someone in the house so we searched every room, closet, under beds, etc.
This sort of activity has always had the opposite effect on me as you might expect. Instead of calming me down it gives me the super creeps.
Anyhoo, we later went to bed and I fell asleep fairly quickly. About 2 hours later I woke to pee and as I tried to fall back to sleep I heard the deep slow voice of a man say "Dead."
Logic tells me that it must have been my husband talking in his sleep or perhaps a snore that I misinterpreted to sound like the word "dead." I have to tell you that the voice sounded unearthly, as if it were coming through speakers or something. Mostly to reassure myself, I asked Steve if he was "ok." He growled at me for waking him. The voices definitely didn't match.
About 3 minutes after the spook voice, Simon came running in the room and got into bed with us. There was nothing creepy about his behavior since he does it nightly, however his pitter patter down the hall reminded me of the thumping we heard in the basement and added to my anxiety.
Simon slept very restlessly in my bed. He twitched and kicked and thrashed about so I was awake most of the night. Probably about 2 hours after the "dead" voice, I heard a scratching in the wall behind my head. I ran my own nails against the wall to compare the sounds and they were not the same. The sound was coming from the inside of the wall. I know this one could be a critter so it scared me less than the other events, however my anxiety was so high at this point it prevented me from falling back to sleep until near dawn.
Now, I confess to often scaring myself with my own imagination but last night was soooo spooky and even Steve felt the fear. Even typing this story out gives me goosebumps, as if now that I've written and shared the story I can't pretend it never happened.
So, my questions to you are...
1. Can a ghost move into a house? Cause we've lived here for so long with out so much activity.
2. How long do you think a ghost would stay dormant?
3. Do you think I've just been playing to much Luigi's Mansion?

Please share you comments and stories. Should I go out and get myself a paranormal sensitive dog? Reassure me... tell me I'm nutso...

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Bambi Tears

More Luray animal escipades to share.
My mom called this morning and said there was a fawn on their front porch. It was curled up against the wall and looked pathetic.
She didn't see the mother anywhere.
I'm guessing the fawn and mother jumped over the fence into the yard to eat the garden then the baby wasn't able to jump back out.
My mom left for work and left the large gate open hoping the mother would return for the fawn once the house was empty. I hope so. Poor little pooh pie! If the baby is still there when she gets home from work she call the Wildlife Rescue League. She said she got a picture of it this morning. I'll post it soon with an update. Hopefully their will be a happy ending.

Bloggin' My Brains Out

Just so ya know...
I've started a travel blog about my HT Luray, VA.
Check it out. It only has one entry so far but there are some cool cave pics added. I'll have to make some videos...

Read it! Then go there!!!

Fill in the spaces

I found this funtastic site and it looks like I'm not the world travellor I thought I was...
Only 8% eh?
I need to book a trip. Where to next?

I had a layover in an airport in Iceland... Does that count?

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


I want this!
It would look sooo good on my Black KA Mixer. Buy it for me and I'll make you some bread.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Charm City Kitty

As some of you might know, one of my best friends was married a couple of weeks ago. Her fiance surprised her with a Hello Kitty Cake made at Charm City Cakes. Charm City Cakes is a bakery in Baltimore that is featured on The Food Network in a fantastic show called Ace of Cakes. The cake was modelled after her Hello Kitty doll. Ace of Cakes is one of Lori's favorite shows and let's just say she has a fondness for Hello Kitty.
I didn't have enough memory on my camera to make a real video but I created a short slide show. The cake is so cool and tasted fantastic. It really was a special thing that he did for her. There are also a couple of pics of Holly in here. Enjoy!

Some cake info for AOC fans:Duff didn't make the cake himself but one of the girls from the show did.The cake probably won't be on the show because of trademark complications but the camera crew was there when they picked up the cake.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

No Butt Towels for my Children

An upcoming trip to the beach and a thread on a forum I frequent reminded me of the following tale of humiliation...

When I was in preschool thousands of years ago, my mother embarrassed me and I've only recently found the humor in it.

You know that Coppertone ad with the dog pulling off the little girls bikini bottom..... Well, I had a towel with that picture on it and my mom made me take it to sprinkler day at school. (We were allowed to splash around in the irrigation system one day a week or so.)

The little boys teased me because I had a towel with a butt on it and I was so upset and hated the towel. The next time my mom tried to make me take the towel to school I had a total meltdown but was to embarrassed to tell her it was because of the butt. She thought I was just being a brat.

As an adult, I definitely see the cuteness of the butt-towel but really, what was my mother thinking? I would never send my child to school with a butt towel, no matter how cute it is.