Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sandcastles R Us

When you vacation with an engineer, sandcastles will be taken seriously. We brought, from Missouri mind you, a hand trowel, a garden shovel, a hand rake, a grout blade and several plastic spackle spreaders. No, those are not technical terms.
The first effort was more along the lines of an ancient city, with mighty walls around the edge to protect the peasants, and a small central castle for nobility.

Then Lilibeth requested that we build Minas Tirith, and we decided to give it a go on an afternoon when the amount of algae floating in the water made it less desirable for swimming. So maybe it doesn't look exactly like the original...

...but we did our best. What do you think? Ours is a little less "mythical city" and a little more "wedding cake", but we were working with a difficult medium and a minimum of experience.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

30 Seconds Over Elgin

We took a morning during our vacation to visit Elgin Air Force base. This was the base where the Doolittle Raider's trained in 1942, and we had just finished reading a biography of Jacob Deshazer, one of the Raiders who returned to Japan after the war and spent his life teaching reconciliation and forgiveness.

Of course, honoring a missionary by visiting an armaments museum seemed a little strange, but I couldn't pass up the opportunity since we were so close. This picture shows the kids standing beneath a Mitchell B-25 bomber, the kind of plane flown by the Doolittle Raiders.

Art showed the kids some cool planes and missiles, while I took pictures and hung around in the WWII sections. This is, apparently, an SR-71 Blackbird. It does look pretty cool, I have to admit.

Mim and Zay both enjoyed pushing lots of buttons and pretending to fly planes as well, because who wouldn't? I'm just thankful to whoever disconnected the eject switches, because they messed with every button and lever they could find.

I don't know if they'll remember the trip in the future, but I'd like to think that at least some of Deshazer's amazing story will stick in their minds a little better, now that they've walked in a few of his footsteps.