Monthly Archives: December 2008

Riley’s a Black Belt!


It’s official, Riley is now a Black Belt in karate!! Okay, actually, she now has a white belt with a black stripe, but somehow that just doesn’t sound as cool as “Black Belt.” Her new belt is a big accomplishment though–she’s as high as she can go in class and is now the highest ranked student! She’s very impressive and can perform some cool moves. She enjoys “throwing” other students and tumbling around on the mat.

The pictures below were taken during her test for her black belt last Saturday. Charles said she did so well!

The kid as her moves down-pat!
Ready to kick.

Showing her teacher she can punch.
Throwing Tray as part of her test.
Now she’s pinning Tray.
She passed! Getting her new belt…
One proud girl!
A photo of the group.
Patiently waiting for a sticker at the end of class.


Lake Lights


On Saturday, we bought tickets to see the Lake Lanier Islands light show online (on a whim) and drove up to Northeast Georgia to check things out. We went to Callaway Gardens last year to see their lights, but we wanted to try something different this year.

Charles took tons of pictures and I’ve posted a few of them here. Riley was completely enthralled and loved every minute of our hour-long drive through the park. She particularly liked one section of lights with a distinct “under water” theme–I’m sure you’ll know it when you see it!

Nine ladies dancing.

Twelve drummers drumming.
Mmmm…huge candy canes!
Toy soldiers.

Flying fish!

Really pretty lines of trees.
Cool castle.
Huge archway.
More candles–this looked like a giant table center piece…
Here they are: Patrick, Squidward and SpongeBob!
SpongeBob Santa!
Live nativity scene. Riley watched for a moment and
then asked us, “Where the heck did they find a camel in Georgia?”
“Why don’t you come with me, little girl, on
a magic carpet ride.”

Very pretty snowflake arch.
We’re not in Kansas anymore…

After all the lights, we stopped at the Christmas shop and looked at all the amazing ornaments and decorations they had for sale. The trees in this place were amazing! Riley also saw Santa, but did not want to go sit on his lap to discuss Christmas presents.
Inside the Christmas Shop.
One of the beautifully decorated trees.

On the way out of the shop, we met the man below–all decked out in an impressive suit. He spoke with Riley for a moment and then sprinkled some magic “Christmas Dust” on her and told her to close her eyes and make a Christmas wish.
Riley getting “sprinkled.”

On the drive home, she asked, “Do you know what my Christmas wish was? I wished for a puppy!” Charles and I just looked at each other and sighed. This kid will not give up on the idea of a dog of her own!!

Better Late Than Never


I’ve been neglecting this blog lately, so here are a few photos from Thanksgiving Day and our recent trip to the Atlanta History Center. We spent Thanksgiving with Charles’ family in Jonesboro and Riley had a blast getting to play with her cousin, Ann.

The whole gang gathers for a group shot.

Riley showing off Papa’s trains.

Riley and Papa with the train set.

Riley shows Ann how to work the trains.

Riley loves her Papa and his Christmas trains.

Papa and his girls.

A couple of weeks ago, we drove to the Atlanta History Center to see the Jim Henson exhibit, “Fantastic World.” It was absolutely amazing and brought back so many great memories. Unfortunately, they don’t allow you to take photos of the cool stuff on display, so here are some images I found online of what we saw…

These guys were my absolute favorites when I was a kid!

Character’s from one of his earlier projects.

It’s Kermie!

These dudes were so cute!

Down in Fraggle Rock!

We also took a look through the 1996 Olympic Games display at the History Center. Riley had fun with the interactive exhibits and had tons of questions once she found out that Charles and I were actually at the ’96 Olympics in Atlanta.

Riley on the medals podium.

Riley with her winning pose.