Friday, August 26, 2016

Arms Family Museum

  Along with wanting to find a yummy place for pizza, which we did, I mentioned that I also wanted to get ice cream. I have heard pistachio ice cream is really good, although I have never tried it because it sounds weird. Pistachios in general are wonderful and I could eat a bag of those each day. (But I don't because they are expensive.) Aunt Paula said Handel's has the best homemade ice cream in her area, so we went there on Thursday, August 18th. They had so many flavors to chose from, except pistachio! At least not at that location, or on that day. I found it on under their flavors online.
  Mommy got the one called Spouse like a House. That was my original choice, but I ended up copying Jordyn and ordered the one that had buckeyes (little peanut butter balls with chocolate around them). We were in Ohio after all! Jessica got strawberry cheesecake and James got the free baby cone. I could only eat about half of mine. It was so rich- and this was "one scoop".
  We drove back over to the Arms Museum, which was only two buildings down from the Butler Art Institute. We had tried to go there the day before, but both buildings closed at 4pm. I think that worked out better though because James tended to get pretty antsy each day after about 30 minutes.  I get it- being in a place where you can't touch anything, makes you want to touch it more!!
  I was only able to get pictures of the outside because the tour guide woman said we weren't allowed to take pictures inside. I later wondered if that had to do with a flash. I never use the flash on the Canon. I would have taken a lot of pictures though. Oh well. The inside was really pretty and I would have liked to stay there if it was a hotel. I think Michael would have liked it too. Here are two pictures that I found from this website:
  I bought a postcard for a dollar of the first picture because that was my favorite room, aside from the porch with stone walls. The house also had really pretty stairs with a knight's coat of armor standing in the corner. Jordyn liked pointing out all of the pretty dishes that were displayed. My favorite were the glasses with peacock feather designs on them. I also bought a pack of mailing cards that had a drawing of the front of the building. I'm a sucker for cards. I have so many!

  A few other fun parts about the trip, to wrap up these ten posts, were when I was tired of playing "pizza" with James, and Jordyn had been spending enough time on my phone making photo collages. So I said, "No more TV and phone stuff for now. Let's pretend we're Amish." Suddenly James exclaimed, "Yaaay!" and the three of us went for a walk. I thought we were making a simple large square in the neighborhood, but towards the end we got lost. Jordyn found the way back to the house with her superb navigational skills, and we gave her a triple hug. One night Uncle Larry lit fire lanterns like in Rapunzel and we watched them fly up into the sky until they burned out, then we roasted marshmallows. We also watched Miracles from Heaven and Santa Clause 3. The end!

The Butler Institute of American Art

  So we went to this museum in Youngstown on Wednesday (August 17th) while we were staying in Ohio. It was pretty interesting to see all the different types of art that has been made, and helps me learn a little more about myself to focus on what grabs my attention and what I continued to walk past (no offense to those artists, we just have different taste). That museum was free for us that day.
  I really wanted to get this picture of Jessica before we went in. One kid on her back, one in the stroller, and one holding her hand. I posted it on Facebook and Instagram with the caption: Super Mom, Jessica!! So inspiring to see her doing so much on her own (while her husband, Jonathan, is working) and rarely asking for help. She told me that she chose to have her kids, so she should be the one to take care of them. #rolemodel #CatholicMom #noexcuses  She would still like to have a fourth kid sometime later in life. Perhaps next year or so.
  This guard was very convincing. He's not real. At first when I walked in, I thought he was kind of a lazy creep for just sitting there when they had another guard (a real person) dressed the same and walking around. That guy made sure we didn't get too close to the art or touch anything. Aunt Paula even started walking up to the fake guard to ask him a question, then suddenly started laughing when she realized he was a piece of art too. They had three other fake people (unknown famous athletes) around the museum, but those were more obvious about being art. Jordyn seemed to think the fake girl was real because she had hair that blew slightly when the air conditioning was on. I took pictures of those for Michael as sculpting references. It was still a little creepy though because I kept waiting for them to come to life when I zoomed in on them.
  We had fun watching all the marbles loop around and fall every which way.
   The mirror wall was a big hit.
  If I ever decided to go back to only picking one picture to post per blog (I doubt that will happen again), I would have picked this one to shine. ^^
 In this area there were many frames that looked empty until you stood in front of them at a certain angle. For the baby on the left, Jessica said if you stood a little more to the right, you could tell that the baby was a girl and had pierced ears. 
 This two way mirror thing made the faces look merged when they were aligned properly. The light on either side would switch, resulting in which person's face was more prominent. 
 James in the room of men. In the picture below I tried to add my own artistic flare by standing in a way where two other drawings could be seen in the reflection of this man's suit. See them? ;)
 One portion of the museum was on the second floor of a church. We had to walk across a glass hallway to get to that side. It had three exhibits. Bird statues, large paper mache dolls with period timed dresses, and these carousel horses through the ages.
  ^^ & the most beautiful part of the museum. This piece is wonderful and kind and cannot be duplicated. It is sweet and loving and perfect. I'll call this one "Cute Face". ;)

Niagara On the Lake

  These pictures are from the last few hours in Canada. We definitely didn't stay long enough. Next time we visit Ohio, I want to drive the extra four hours North West of Ontario to Montreal! Aunt Paula says that makes you feel like you aren't even in North America anymore. She says everyone there speaks French, as that is their main language. I didn't know that either. There were a lot of people with stands set up, selling fruit and vegetables at the end of their driveways, once we got further into the town of Niagara on the Lake, and further away from the falls.
  We stopped at the winery called, Inniskillin, because Aunt Paula had some coupons for free tastings. The whole trip, even when we weren't in Canada, everywhere we went included a coupon. Even when we got ice cream! I liked that. I don't like wine, or anything alcoholic really (except a mudslide I think), so I just walked around and took pictures until they were done. I did share the pieces of dark chocolate that the server gave them to compliment the wine.
  This little church below was a small landmark that Aunt Paula wanted to stop by to show us. We were able to go inside and it looked like it would hold about 8 people, plus the priest and perhaps a bride and groom, if they were standing the whole time. I quickly found this blog, Captured Pieces, that shows a bride and groom who got married here and the photographer had to use a wide lens to get everyone in the picture at the same time.
  That week spending time with Jessica and her kids in Ohio reminded me that watching and hearing little kids pray is pretty much the greatest thing ever. (Plus that video I saw online of a dog praying before he ate his food.) I remember we visited them in Georgia one time when Jordyn was maybe 5 and during her prayers she added in to "pray for Rachel and Michael" even though nobody told her to. Oh my goodness, it was so sweet! And even though Peyton doesn't say many real words, when we all sit around the table for dinner, she puts her hands out for us to hold and looks very excited. When we prayed in Ohio Jeremy always got a big smile on his face, hearing us speak in unison. Mommy says its because they are little and still remember Heaven, hearing the angels pray. I like that thought.
  Those were some of the pictures I took from the car while driving through Niagara on the Lake. I didn't think about it until now how clean the car windows were! I wish we had more time in this area too, so we could have looked in the shops that they had, although I'm sure they would all be over priced. I just like looking at the things people make.
  Below you will see photos from another winery, Jackson-Triggs. We only stayed at that one for a few minutes, because the next tour wasn't until an hour later and we needed to stop for lunch so we could make our way back to Canfield, Ohio by 4pm. Aside from the rows and rows of wine grapes, they also had a vegetable garden in the front. We tried some of their blackberries- we were polite and ate the ones that had already fallen on the ground, eating only the clean side. 
  Fun fact: Canadians get their gas in liters, so the signs all read about 95 cents. I looked it up and there are 3.78 liters in a gallon, which equals to $3.59 per gallon in Canadian (or $2.78 American, which is kind of expensive since I think we're right around $2.00/gallon in Orlando).

  Some things that we did that I didn't take pictures of on my Canon (Mommy, Aunt Paula and Uncle Larry took pictures on their phones) were after we drove through the tiny town of Niagara on the Lake, we parked in between Battlefield of Fort George and Mississauga Beach, where Uncle Larry and I stood on the rocks. He helped me keep my balance while I took off my shoe and sock so I could say, "I have stood in Lake Ontario!!" The houses in that area were sooo cute and at least $400-600k ($309- 464k American) each even though some were about the size of our new house. 

  On our way to lunch, we stopped into Chocolate FX where I bought some granola that was on a great sale: Buy 1, Get 3 free! The Lawrenceville family restaurant they wanted to take us to was closed on Mondays, so we went to Tim Horton's  instead. The Greek salad I got was very yummy & I picked the Canadian Maple donut (instead of wedges) and it had surprise custard in the middle. My favorite!

  Before leaving Canada, we stopped into the Duty Free store where I bought baby Canada socks, just incase it was our first trip together. (It was not. The doctor confirmed that this past Monday that I am not pregnant and I've started taking medicine to regular my system to work the way it should be.) I was getting excited to plan a trip with Michael and our baby (a couple months after it's born, towards the end of my maternity leave, whenever that may be) to Vancouver, then visit various cities in Washington state and Oregon, like Portland. But Michael would rather put that money towards a deck in our backyard. *Le sigh* Goodbye Canada, you were wonderful!