Sunday, March 29, 2009

Finishing Up

One more sunset picture, with me in it. I was wearing my black pjs anyways, but because the sun is so bright, it's just a shadow of me. I still love it though :)
My mom asked me to take a picture for her because I was getting up early the last day to watch the sunrise. Lynn walked with me to the ocean and I got the most gorgeous photos! This is one of them.
another person I don't know. Just a picture of the pool at our hotel, facing the ocean. The pool water was a bit warmer than the ocean water, so we swam in there a bit more :)
The waves were crazy our last day there....a storm was moving through and there were a lot of rip-currents...So, I respectfully watched without getting very deep in the water....good to have a healthy fear of nature!
I don't know these people. It's just a nice beach picture
This is what our hotel looked like from the was soooo nice :)
Murtle and Lurtle. My new pet turtles :) The only way to tell them apart is Lurtle has a tiny mark on his left side that Murtle doesn't. It looks kind of like the shape of Florida...that's the ONLY difference between the two...aren't they cute? :)
Another photo of the shuttle
Thanks to good timing, we were able to see the space shuttle that took off 2 weeks ago, from outside the back of our hotel, on the deck, facing the ocean. It happened about 50 miles from where we were standing, and only about 2.5 hours after we arrived in Daytona and settled in to our hotel. I took many pictures of this, but this one is pretty good. IT was amazing to watch, and also to see it as it went over the ocean, and got smaller and smaller. We even saw the (gaskets?) that dropped off after it reached a certain point...this experience really fueled my excitement for our trip to the Kennedy Space Center that we took a few days later.
Outside the front of our hotel (looking out our hotel room window). I miss those palm trees!
I'm not sure what happened but the last several pictures I added to my blog didn't show up when I published the page. So, now that you've seen pictures of the Kennedy Space Center, how about some of the beach?

Beach, Additions to the Family, and More

This is the thing that you always see in pictures...the part that lands on the moon...and I think the space craft lands on it or something...I don't know! But here it is :)
Girls, if you ever feel "fat" just stand in front of one of'll feel wonderfully small :)
I talked about this below. All of these would have had fire blowing out of them during take-off. These are the missiles that were used for the Apollo launches. What they use now is a bit different and while probably just as powerful, not really comparable to these in that they are compared to the power of an atomic bomb!
One of the engines for one of the...umm...I think it was for one of the missiles?? (I don't think that's was an engine!!! (or rather it IS an engine..just not one that's used anymore :)
The most I understood about this massive 'thing' is this. We had to drive way out past the sand track to get close enough that we could climb up a tower, and I could zoom my camera as far as it would zoom, to get a picture of this thing to turn out like it did. The actual space launches are on an island, about 3 miles from land (and we were in the building where the control panels are..and got to see them ourselves! And outside that building is the bleachers where close family/friends only were permitted to view the take-offs. This is part of many other constructions near the island, that helps power the process. That's all I know...sorry!! Interesting fact: If you are 800 feet from the actual take-off, the sound is so loud that it would kill you! When we stood inside the control room, they reenacted a simulation of a take-off so we could feel how hot and loud the room got, 3 miles from the action!!! There is a strip of solar panels at the top back of the room and they flipped open and shook violently and heated was pretty neat :) Can't imagine what that was like for the families to be sitting outside and see it that close-up....also, the old apollo missions used missiles that had the power of an atomic bomb when they heated up!! Pictures of that on here too (see above)
An up-close visit with the NASA Space Center. Interesting facts: 1) See the large parallel gray things on the right side of the building (around the corner from the NASA emblem)? Those doors open up and they store the space shuttles inside of that building! They come out of those doors and are wheeled down a sand-track to the launching pad. This process of a relatively short trip takes about 8 hours....gotta be careful with billion dollar flying objects!!!! Fact #2) The blue area of the American Flag (the entire area...yes, where the stars are) is the size of an NBA Basketball court!! That's how massive this building is, in case the picture doesn't do it any justice (which it definitely does not) By the way, this is as close as we got to the building. We were taken in other buildings but this one is I'm pretty sure closed off to the public completely (doesn't that make you curious of what other projects and possessions are inside of there??? It does me!!)
The Explorer-an up close view of a real space craft that has been to space...too cool!!! (my friend's husband explained to me that the black tiles were part of the heat shield and that EVERY SINGLE SQUARE had to be checked or the craft could burn up before its return to earth)
Standing inside part of a display at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida
Well here it is! I finally did some new fun and exciting things this month! Ever since my parents got me a digital camera for Christmas, I've had so much fun taking more pictures than I did in the past. Here are a few of the things I've been up to in the past several weeks:

1) I went to Daytona Beach for the first time over spring break with my friend and her husband and mother. The four of us had such a wonderful time and I've got some great pictures to prove it :)

2) I adopted 2 little turtles on the trip. Their names are Murtle and Lurtle (the 2nd name was taken from a 3 year old cousin as my cousin and her children were helping me come up with good names. I'm really looking forward to telling him when he grows up that HE named the turtle Lurtle...just in case that poor little turtle gets made fun of :)

3) This weekend my parents took a trip to where we used to live in PA to visit my brother. So, I'm enjoying some much needed and appreciated time by myself. Time to think and pray about a lot of things weighing on me lately. And time to relax a little and remember that God is STILL totally in control and aware of all things.

4) School has really been winding down for me, in large part because of my decision to take on less this semester and a lack of practicing---one of the top reasons I chose to stay home this weekend. However, this has been a very busy teaching semester for me and between students and church activities, I manage to keep busy enough. In case your looking for a reason to pray for me...on top of the many other great reasons!! (relationships, guidance, decisions with school...guidance in general) you could also pray that God would help me develop and use the communication/leadership skills to know when to put my foot down or draw the line, so to speak, when it comes to students cancelling lessons and making them up. This has been quite an issue this semester, even more-so than in the past, and it's something that really needs to be dealt with as these students are taking more and more of my time rearranging and cancelling things.

Ok, enough talking. I can't wait to show you these pictures! And unfortunately, I still haven't figured out how to get them to post BELOW my text, so you've already seen them by the time you've read this! Oh well, minor detail. Thanks for keeping up with me and God Bless!!!

Monday, March 2, 2009

March is here!

So, I'm trying to make a point this year of being more regulary with my blogging, a bit shorter and concise, and thinking of things interesting to others. I've come to learn one thing through this, I'm NOT that interesting!!! :) Hence, the blog title "March is here!" I really couldn't think of anything more exciting, sorry!

I do have one bit of exciting news, although it's not the kind that will make you jump out of your chair and yell "YIPEE!!!" But it's enough for me :) I finished my paper on Bach's Orgelbuchlein project, about 20 minutes ago! I've been working on it since Saturday and had no idea it was going to take 3 days of work to finish! Now, I still have to type the hand-out and practice GIVING my presentation, which needs to be about 25 minutes long. I'm the first one tomorrow morning, at 9:30 a.m....and aside from not being much a morning person, I don't realy like going first! But, the good news is, I get to be done first! :) I had no idea this project would take so long....oh wait, I ALREADY SAID THAT!!!

When this boring and BORED doctoral student finishes this project she's going to come up with some nice new and exciting things to talk about...promise :)

Until then, HAPPY MARCH!