Monthly Archives: March 2010

Our Spring Break Trip — Part 1

On Friday the Maccubbin family embarked on our Spring Break vacation.  We left early Friday morning for Fort Collins, Colorado (about an hour north of Denver) to celebrate the 40th birthday of one of our old Frisco friends, Janet McBride.  Five years ago, the McBrides moved from Frisco to Fort Collins, so it has been several years since we have seen them.

We stayed the Edwards’ House Bed and Breakfast in Historic Downtown Fort Collins.  The House was built in 1904.  Fort Collins has an extensive number of well preserved residential as well as commercial buildings in their Historic Downtown.  We enjoyed the Winter Farmer’s Market as well as finding some good buys in the unique shops and boutiques in downtown.  The party was a true surprise.  In addition to the Maccubbins traveling in from Florida for the party, Isabel Sem also traveled in from Texas.  Sunday morning and early afternoon was spent enjoying breakfast and lunch with friends before we headed out to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Our trip to Rocky Mountain National Park started at Estes Park, CO.  From there we drove West into and up the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains.  It is probably the first time my girls have seen any significant mountains in their lives.  Craig was in heaven all afternoon as he got to test his newly acquired wide angle lens on the Rocky Mountain Range.  We spent about 5 hours driving, hiking and photographing this National Park.  Our girls who hadn’t seen snow all year (much less any cold temperatures) enjoyed the opportunity to have snow ball fights and make snow angels for just about a day, which was just what they needed of winter.  In addition to my Facebook photo album, you can find Craig’s pictures of the trip on his Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/cmaccubbin

After leaving Fort Collins, our next several days were spent in Denver.  I love old historic buildings, so Craig made us reservations at the Brown Palace Hotel in Denver.  This hotel maintains much of its original architecture and has been continuously operating since the late 1890s.  We stayed in the “top of the Brown” suites and had afternoon tea in the main lobby with some wonderful scones and Devonshire cream as well as sandwiches and desserts.

The Brown Palace hotel location put us close to the 16th street downtown mall.  This is a large outdoor pedestrian mall with a light rail train running up and down for about 20 blocks of downtown Denver.  We spent the morning exploring shops.   After lunch while the girls and I got our nails done, Craig got even more pictures of many of the well preserved historic buildings in Downtown Denver.  Needless to say the camera is getting a lot of good use this trip and Craig is getting plenty of good shots.

The latter half of our trip will take us to Texas, specifically Frisco.  The girls have been so looking forward to this part of the trip as they will get to see their friends that they haven’t seen in almost 8 months.  This will be the part of the trip that Craig and I will be running around with our heads cut off trying to keep up with their social schedules. We look forward to visiting with church friends on Sunday and running into some our of our downtown friends during the week as we visit the two properties which we still own in Frisco.

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I Need a Better Morning!

There are mornings in my life when I start to really question my parenting skills and this morning was high on that list.  Last night, one of my girls had handed me an assignment to review and this morning she couldn’t find it.  I was sure I had given it back to her and she was sure I hadn’t.  Regardless of who was to blame, crisis ensued in the house, compounded only by that fact that the bus was arriving in 10 minutes.

Finally, we could wait no longer.  The bus was pulling up so I shoved the girls out the door, upset and frustrated that again we had failed to pack the backpacks the night before so in a neat and organized fashion (like all other families) we were ready for the start of the new week.

As the girls walked to the bus stop I was mostly frustrated at myself for not instilling the disciplines in my girls that would make them structured and organized naturally.  As I walked through my house beating myself up emotionally, I looked down and sure enough, there it was….the missing assignment that we were all crazed to find moments earlier.

Maybe I can catch them, I thought!  Barefoot and wearing only the t-shirt and sweatpants that I crawled out of bed in, I ran out the door and past my new neighbors that I had yet to meet (first impressions are everything, right?).  I threw myself into the car and raced to the bus stop only to see the bus pulling away.  Driving back to the house, I formulated “Plan B.”

Knowing that I could not show up at any middle school in America looking like I did, I ran into the house and changed, hoping I’d get a second chance to make a good impression on my new neighbors on the way back out, but alas no.

The next thought that raced through my mind at this point was how to find that beautiful child when I got to school.  Entering a middle school with 1800 kids and trying to find the one that is yours is like finding a needle in a haystack.  What are the odds either of them remembered their cell phone on their way out the door?  I was hoping.  And taking a bet on the child I knew was most likely to remember, I sent her a text….”I found your sister’s assignment.  Have her meet me at the front of school, ok?” And I waited….

Beep. “K sur wil.”  Ahh….a glimmer of hope in my morning!

I beat the bus to school and sat in the parking lot waiting and knowing that even though she might have got the message on the bus, it was a long walk from the bus to the front of the school… and in middle school, there are a lot of distractions.

Finally, she appeared out of a crowd of other pre-teens, but she kept walking.  Now I’m questioning whether she even got the message in the first place.  I jumped out of my car and called her name…again…and again.  And finally she looks my way.

Looking a little surprised to see me, I hold up the missing assignment.

“Thanks, Mom,” a little smile comes over her face.  And this is where I’m suppose to count to 100 (or in this case maybe 1000) before I say anything.

I drove the long way home from school where the speed limit is 35 MPH because I knew the open interstate would not do well for the calming my soul needed today.  While I know I have many other things on my to do list this morning, I think I’ll take an extended walk with God and get his guidance on how to handle these situations.

After all, I only have 5 more years of mornings to get this right.

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