McKean Visit, I

Well, Thursday was a long day. Such a long drive to make with no one to talk to. The kids watched a couple of movies, and helped out with digging food and munchies from the cooler, and napped. But mostly they were quiet. And I was bored. They got whiny/picky/grumpy/irritable coming up I-79, by which point I was equally, if not more so, whiny/picky/grumpy/irritable. So I sort of melted down on them. Fortunately we all got it together before we got here.

Friday we ran a bunch of errands. Forgot my toothbrush, broke my sunglasses somewhere around Altoona, needed bigger life jackets for the kids, etc. Nothing too exciting. Although, found a great Father's Day gift for Joe. For only $6.50. :) It'll dress-up (fill to the gills) his office at the college. He has a bunch of cool stuff in there, already (including this, this, and this). Dad has just given me his old slide rule from the Academy to add to Joe's nifty math/toys collection.

And then, after Dad got home from work, we all went out on the boat. Matthew caught a sheepshead, and Emily caught a small white bass (big enough to keep).

Saturday we went to the funeral home for my mom's Aunt Arlene. The kids had their first experience with the whole funereal situation. They handled it perfectly. I figured I should expose them to that sort of thing before it's someone they actually know and love. And, I think it was a good choice. We had Aunt Deb with us for this, and then she went with us to the Erie Zoo Member Day celebration. Free food, drinks, carousel and train ride can't be beat! It was a warm, sunny day and we had a ball. I'll post the pictures of the Lorikeets climbing all over Dad when I get them off his camera.

Oh, and Dad & I saw the ISS/STS-117 flyover on Saturday night. The earlier one (roughly 9:30pm) was impossible, too low and lost in all the light. Sunset is pretty late here. But, the later one (around 11pm) was gorgeous. Bright, long-lasting, arcing WAY up through Polaris. Even got a good flare out of it, making it about as bright as Venus. It was well brighter than Jupiter through most of the crossing. This site is a good one for knowing when to look.

Yesterday was church and Father's Day, of course. We went out on the boat again. Em and Matthew did most of the fishing. Em even caught a couple of fish entirely on her own. All-in-all we wound up with 3 small gobies, 3 nice perch, a zebra mussel, and ...
this thing. We really weren't sure what on earth it was. It was about 10-11" long. After we figured it out, and the fish commission Penn State intern chick confirmed it's native and has a substantial natural range, we released it back into the lake. (Dad had even pulled over to another fisherman, "What big, black, has four legs and lives on the bottom of the lake?" Sounded like he was waiting for a punch line. But, the guy said, "Might be a water dog." Guess that's the large lake-version of a mud puppy.)

Saw the space station fly-over again last night. Along with some nice views (using Dad's spotting scope) of Jupiter and four moons, the unlit portion of the currently crescent moon, and Saturn. Wish I were with Chris and his telescope for all that.

No idea what's on tap for today. Right now Mom and Em are working in the garden. And, I suspect I've procrastinated about as long as I can get away with.



Kristin said...

Anytime you want to come up for a look thru the telescope, you're welcome.

Chris said...

Even when it's cloudy... like now.

Less exciting though.