Archive for the ‘Trips’ Category

A380 Arrives At Dulles

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

On my way to San Diego today (hello California!), I happened to be at Dulles when the first A380 arrived there for passenger service[1] Air Frace had the A20 gate decked out in red, white and blue balloons with signs showing the amazing interior space in this double-decker behemoth. Unfortunately, we needed to be back at our gate to board the flight to CA about the time it was scheduled to arrive from Paris.

As it turns out, this gave us a great view from the terminal windows of the bright and shiny new aircraft taxiing.


I didn’t bring my camera along, so you’ll have to survive with these phone-snaps of the arrival ceremony, complete with fire-brigade salute.


  1. According to the Air France attendant that I spoke to, an A380 had visited for show, but this was the first in commercial service. []

January Skiing

Saturday, January 22nd, 2011

Many of these pictures have already featured on K’s Facebook gallery, but it took me a while to get them up on our personal gallery.

These shots are form our ski trip to Sunday River in Maine. K’s folks invited us up to join them in a condo right at South Ridge lodge. We joined them, K’s brother Jim and his girlfriend Robin. It was a fantastic location and we had a lot of fun. This was Nate’s first skiing (beyond our backyard) and he had four days of lessons in the morning. He progressed three levels to the point where he was in a group with kids several years older. He seemed to really enjoy himself.

We also celebrated Rachel’s birthday early which let us celebrate it for over a week!

Here are some shots.





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Thursday, October 21st, 2010

It’s official, the American Red Cross doesn’t want my blood. Some poor vampire will go without this Halloween.

Apparently, Isla Roatan in Honduras is a location for immediate deferral due to risk of malarial infection… Even though I spent less than a day there.

It’s rather impressive how detailed their geographical database actually is. Simply identifying “Belize” wasn’t sufficient. I needed to identify specific geographical locations. This is a problem, since I literally do not know exactly where in Belize the cave tour bus actually took us. Regardless, it wasn’t Belize that caused the deferral (perhaps because I could only identify Belize City), and even if it did, the restriction would be the same.

The deferral is for one year from my last day in Roatan. I suppose that assumes I don’t come down with malaria in the next year.

Cruise Pics: Highlights

Friday, September 17th, 2010

So the more astute amongst you will probably have determined that I have completed the cruise picture uploads. You can see the entire set in the Caribbean Cruise album. There are 146 (!) pictures that made the cut, which means they were either nice shots or captured some unique element of the trip . However, I won’t bombard you happy readers with more than a sampling of my favorites. Here are 19 that tell the story pretty well.

Nate gets some sleep on the plane ride.

The whole family on board the Carnival Legend. (Yes, even Rachel is represented by her left foot only.)

Rachel enjoys the cabin.

The decks from the funnel looking forward.

Nate dressed up for “Elegant Night” and his pal the towel elephant.

Rachel in her fancy dress was the princess of the ball.

Children on the cruise ship make for early mornings.

Caught with another woman!

An early morning rainbow.

Three ships at Cozumel, Mexico.

Colors of an iron hulk.

Mom & Dad enjoying a sail.

Life at the beach.

What horrors await us in the Mayan underworld?

A tapir skull

The Sunshine Skyway bridge from underneath… at night… hand held… from a moving ship.

The ship “hotel” lobby.

A shark! (Safely behind glass in the Florida Aquarium)

A well camouflaged sea dragon.

Cruise Pics: Finally Getting Around To Them

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

So as most of you know, we took a cruise at the end of August with pretty much my entire family. So beyond taking three year old N and 7 month old N, K&I cruised with my parents, my sister, her husband and two pre-teen kids. It was a lot of fun, and really tiring and not just a little stressful. Let’s say we would certainly consider a cruise as a future vacation, but we’re certainly not going again with any kids under the age of 5.

I took around 600 pictures and my Dad gave me over a hundred of his, plus some we bought from our excursions. Anyhow, that’s a lot of images to catalog, evaluate, edit and upload. I’m about two thirds of the way done with processing the most interesting pictures. The first 92 pics are streaming onto the internet right now. I will eventually do my typical highlight post, but you’re welcome to browse the Caribbean Cruise gallery.

PS: Because I’m going to bed now, I won’t have a chance to clean up after the upload. There will probably be a lot of broken thumbnails, but the images are still there.

Darien Lake and The Movers

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

Last weekend[1] we took Nate out to Darien Lake to catch the Imagination Movers in concert. If you haven’t heard of them, they’re a band from Louisiana that have their own Disney Channel show[2]. They sing what I call pop knock-off songs. Not covers really, but songs in popular styles from the 80s and later.((The band members are roughly our age, so you tend to hear influences from various bands. It’s sort-of a personal challenge to try to identify the band or songs that would seem to be the root inspiration. We’ve identified pretty strong motifs from RunDMC, Devo, REM, INXS and others.)) The songs have messages suitable for kids and are generally pretty catchy. Let’s just say there could be a lot worse things to have Nate listening to.

Anyhow, we met my parents at Darien lake and braved the scattered showers for some amusement park time. Nate enjoyed riding the rides with everybody, and really enjoyed those he could do by himself.

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At one point I got in line for a roller coaster and the others went on to the kid rides, so we were separated. I happened by the stage and saw the band doing a sound check. After that, it seemed like I kept running into them throughout the park. I was second in line for the front seat of the Mind Eraser when four members of the band[3] were given a VIP insert to the front of the line. They seemed to enjoy the ride. [4]

I did too.

Later on we setup for the concert and braved the rain. We weren’t terribly impressed with the Choo Choo Soul opening act. It seemed a bit rigid, but then the crowd was pretty dampened by the rain.

K&R wait out the rain.

Nate weathers the storm while Gramma and Grampa look on.

The Movers put on a pretty good show, about an hour and a half and seemed to be making efforts to satisfy the relatively wet crowd. Nate hung in there pretty well, but it was late in a busy day so he had some slow points too.

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The weather improved by the end of the show and they took time after to come out and meet the fans and sign autographs. Unfortunately, the random guy who took this picture managed to focus on the background… [5] I’m bummed because it is definitely a good shot that got away.


  1. I’m only a week behind! []
  2. of the same name []
  3. Rich, Dave, Scott and their extra keyboard player who’s name I don’t know. I can only assume that Smitty was doing other things. []
  4. Sorry, but I only had my phone camera. []
  5. Literally, the center focus point is highlighted on the background threading between Rich and I. []

This Weekend

Sunday, April 25th, 2010

We had a busy weekend, but it was the sort-of nice busy when you take best advantage of that precious time away from weekday activities. We got a head start when I took off the afternoon from work and went to Pratt’s Falls…. and ice cream.
Nate chose this particular moment to read his first word without prompting. He simply pointed down to the graffiti on a park bench and said “Hey Mommy, this says…”
“…Ben.” Yeah, it could have been worse. Want more? Get more!

Yesterday, we spent the day in Rochester at the Strong National Museum of Play. We met our college friends Liz and Eric, as well as their two children, Clara and Perrin. We didn’t have too much time to visit, but it was nice to see them for a few minutes each time we passed.

We took the opportunity to visit their butterfly garden. I probably would have had more pictures, but I had not anticipated how much my camera would fog up. It was very warm and very humid in the enclosed garden. Still I managed to get some after my camera warmed up.

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A good time was had by the kids of all ages.

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Lest we forget that a play museum is for children only, I give you this tidbit from one of the museum placards:

More Strong pictures

We weren’t sure we were ever going to get Nate out of Sesame Street. He went back about four times, and we finally took this picture on the way out…

Highland Forest and Family Time

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

On Labor Day, after spending the weekend with K’s folks, we headed out to Highland Forest for a walk in the woods and some time in the sun.

It was a nice day out but the slightly faded leaves and brilliant goldenrod were harbingers of things to come.

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After our walk we came home and spent more time outside. Nate helped me fix my boat.[1] He’s pretty skilled with the screwdriver actually. We now keep them out of reach.

K had the camera when N took a little tumble. These three images capture the recovery pretty well.

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Then some shenanigans with the maple tree.

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And Nate took some pictures of us…

Saving the best for last… one of the pics from the morning is my new favorite.

  1. I broke one of the traveler fair-leads so decided to replace them both. []

State Fair

Monday, September 7th, 2009

Busy weekend at the Schierer household as we packed in as much summer as we could. Not to mention all the stuff we regularly do in a weekend.

K started Friday at the Dr’s office. Baby and K are doing great.[1] K’s folks came out for the weekend so we started with The Great New York State Fair.

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More pics in the gallery.

Is it just me or is “Mangels” not such a good name to use for amusement park rides?

  1. Apparently the pics from a few weeks back weren’t clear enough for the Dr, so they asked to take more. More pictures are posted. []

Cayuga Lake and Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

My parents spent the last week camping in a cabin at Cayuga Lake State Park. They’ve been tooling about on the lake and canal system with their boat and sound like they’ve had a grand time. Friday, we hopped in the car and met them at the park. Nate was pretty excited and talked about riding in Grampa’s Boat the whole trip over. We hopped in the boat despite the uncertain weather and decided to cruise north into the canal system. Just north of Cayuga Lake, the canals go through the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge. Via the canals and rivers associated with the Erie Canal, one can pretty much take a boat to anywhere on the Great Lakes, the Atlantic Ocean and beyond. Our trip was somewhat shorter.

Here’s an overview of the area we were in.

View Larger Map

Of course, I was taking pictures of the wildlife, which is much harder to do from a motor boat than I anticipated. Sure it’s easy to get snap shots, but it was harder getting them to be sharp enough to be worth looking at more than once. My success was only marginal, but hopefully they’ll at least give you an idea for the number of herons, osprey and kingfishers that we saw.

First through Cayuga-Seneca canal lock 1 to access the Refuge.

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I don’t think Nate likes being on the boat at all.

Heron, kingfisher, osprey… Oh my!

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More like this in the gallery