A Journal, with Pictures

Family

Thanksgiving 2014

by on Nov.30, 2014, under Family

The traditional family gathering for Thanksgiving happened in Hilton Head in 2014. The festivities really started Monday when Mom started the shopping, and cooking that went on almost non-stop through Wednesday morning. Jen, Mike and Alexandra drove up in less than ideal weather on Wednesday but arrived safe and sound for a well deserved glass of wine and dinner. Thanksgiving day dawned clear and cool with the Prado’s, Heidi, Gary, Brenn, Caitlin and Kinsey driving over from Savannah. Kids played both in doors and outdoors, there was the usual kitchen kibitzing and football watching. We were join by our good friends Gordon and Marilyn in the afternoon in time for a cocktail, more socializing in preparation for the feast. Mom as usual out did herself with dinner, however a highlight of the day was Brenn’s saying the grace before dinner. He is growing up, and growing up well. It was a jolly dinner enjoyed by all with the kids at their table and the adults enjoying the noise reduction and conversation.

 

A perfect day, except the beloved 49ers didn’t play well, but in the overall scheme of things still a perfect day, with family and friends.

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Post Thanksgiving

by on Nov.30, 2014, under Family

Friday after Thanksgiving was time to hang out together and give Mom a much needed rest from cooking. We all went over to Shelter Cove to get out in the sun and get a photo taken with a very cool Santa. A little boat viewing, bounce house and craft watching and it was back home. We hung out together at home and watched Missouri come from behind to win, making Heidi and Brenn very happy. It was a big barbecue ribs dinner (take out) then all the kids slept over.

Saturday the family, as is the tradition, traveled out to Spring Island for the annual, owners market, kids fun activity, lunch, dog show and general great to be alive as a family day. The girls loved the petting zoo, all enjoyed the crafts and face painting, shopping produced some great bargains, enjoyed a bigggg lunch and all watched as Jen, Mike and Alexandra s golden retrievers sister competed in the dog show.

Alexandra had a Sunday Gymnastics meet in Florida so we all left for our separate homes from Spring Island after the dog show. It was a great Thanksgiving family get together

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Best Family 4th of July Ever

by on Jul.20, 2014, under Family

The Williamson, Montgomery and Prado families get together for the fourth of July every year at Spring Island, this year was special. For one thing there was the sports camp Sunday and Monday, in which Brenn and Alexandra participated. Mike, Jennifer and Alexandra drove up from Fort Lauderdale on Saturday and picked up Brenn on their way to the Chechessee cottage. Joyce and I flew in from Dayton to Hilton Head. We had several projects in Hilton Head so we went back and forth until Wednesday. Kinsey and Caitlin joined Brenn and Alexandra for Camp Spring Island (nature camp) on Tuesday and stayed in a house on Callawassie Island. Gary brought his boat from Savannah on Wednesday. Besides dinner and socializing our first all family activity was a boat trip from Chechessee over to Hilton Head Island and back. It was great fun with beautiful scenery, a giant school of dolphins past by the boat while we observed and in general everyone had a good time.

Captain Gary

Captain Gary

Dolphin

Dolphin

Gratitude

Gratitude

Deck hand Mike

Deck hand Mike

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joyce and I enjoyed a round of golf at Chechessee on Thursday and the everyone met a the Spring Island pool which was the gathering spot. So the family hung out together, enjoyed the great weather and all of the amenities of Spring Island.

Caitlin and Grandma

Caitlin and Grandma

Alexandra and Grandpa

Alexandra and Grandpa

Alexandra and Grandma

Alexandra and Grandma

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The big day is the fourth of July, with a decorating horses, bikes and golf carts, a parade, a big picnic lunch, and after lunch tons of activities. This year the big hit, was a water slide, bouncy house, and dunk tank, that occupied the kids for hours after lunch. It was a perfect day that everyone enjoyed.

Brenn decorating

Brenn decorating

Decorating horses

Decorating horses

Parade begins

Parade begins

Decorated golf cart

Decorated golf cart

Kids of all ages

Kids of all ages

Prado kids in parade

Prado kids in parade

Alexandra in the parade

Alexandra in the parade

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the things that makes Spring Island so special is the staff and this event was no exception with the magnificent staff doing a fabulous job. The lunch was spectacular, the service great and nothing was overlooked in making it a great day for everyone.

Magnificent servers

Magnificent servers

Brenn burger

Brenn burger

Fourth picnic

Fourth picnic

Kinsey's desert

Kinsey’s desert

Jen relax's

Jen relax’s

Brenn is full

Brenn is full

Fourth cake

Fourth cake

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Water Fun!

Water Fun!

Dunk tank

Dunk tank

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the evening, we packed a picnic dinner and headed to Hilton Head to watch the fireworks from the water in Skull Creek. We saw a great sun set them a spectacular fireworks display.

Sunset on the fourth

Sunset on the fourth

Bang!

Bang!

Boom!

Boom!

Fireworks finale

Fireworks finale

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone agreed this was the best family fourth of July ever.

Family Fourth of July

Family Fourth of July

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COPA Jekyll Island Fly-In Saturday May 17

by on May.18, 2014, under Family

NOTE: Click twice on thumb nails to enlarge images.

Some came in on Friday, but the majority of the fly-in attendees arrived on Saturday May 17th.The weather was perfect clear skies, light winds, and warm dry temps, welcome to the grand strand islands. Everyone was on their own to explore the island and enjoy the ambiance of Jekyll Island, there was lot to see and do, or you could just relax. One of the nice amenities available on the island is rental of the unique red bug electric cars, which many did. So exploring before and after lunch was in order. The natural beauty with live oak forest, marsh land, a gorgeous golf course, great beaches,andwaterways, historic ruins, and the historic Jekyll Island Club property with surrounding buildings gave everyone plenty to see.

Jekyll MarshHorton HouseJekyll BeachJekyll cottageJekyll Island Club

There were many choices for lunch. We chose the wharf right in front of the hotel, where there was music and indoor as well as outdoor dining on local seafood favorites.

Beach MusicSaturday Lunch

After lunch it was more exploring or as our organizers Jim and Jackie Dout decided, just relax by the pool.

Jim and Jackie

We all met for cocktails in the COPA private room off the main dining room. There were 36 COPA members and guests for dinner. We had time to socialize in the grandeur of the great historic hotel.   Saturday CocktailsSaturday before dinnerSaturday chattingSaturday drinksSaturday receptionSaturday Group

We then ordered dinner from the Grand Dining Room Menu and enjoyed COPA fellowship and a great meal.

Saturday DinnerSaturday SocializingSaturday after dinner coffee

After dinner the conversations continued and some left for the outdoor bar at the pool, on an absolutely perfect evening. The socializing went on with everyone knowing tomorrows brunch didn’t start until 11:30. It was a great evening, perfectly organized withe everyone expressing their appreciation for the great job that Jim and Jackie Dout did putting the event together.

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Alexandra Montgomery National Champion

by on Jan.22, 2014, under Family

Alexandra, and her parents traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada to participate in the National Club gymnastics championships. Alexandra qualified at the state level in Vault and Bars, as well as placing all around. Alexandra is the National Champion in her age group in Beam, Third in floor and third all around. Congrats to Alexandra. Alexandra’s team took first place.

Alexandra

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Christmas 2013 on the Disney Dream

by on Dec.27, 2013, under Family

Disney Dream

 

Our family gathered in Port Canaveral Florida to board the Disney Dream for a four day Christmas Cruise together. Jen, Mike and Alexandra drove up from Fort Lauderdale. Heidi, Gary, Brenn, Kinsey and Caitlin Prado down from Savannah. Joyce and I flew our plane from Hilton Head the day before boarding, landing on Merritt Island, a short cab ride to Port Canaveral. On the Sunday before Christmas we boarded around 11:00 AM, with everything very well organized. We met in the terminal and after checking in boarded together. After a very ample lunch and unpacking, it was time for the Sail Away party on the main deck. Everyone had a great time as we got underway and sailed out to sea.

First PartySail Away ShowSail Away PartyHign FiveBrenn enjoying the partyGoofy being goofyParty timeSailing out to SeaSunset over Port Canaveral

 

We learned that there was an excellent live show every evening starting a 6:30 PM. There was a break (adult cocktail hour), then dinner at 8:30 PM, our choice for the late seating. We had the same great waiters every night, but a different dinning room three out of four nights. The dinning rooms were very different and a show in themselves. After the children’s dinner they had supervised activities available while the adults enjoyed dining. Very civilized, particularly for grand parents, but appreciated by parents as well. The food was very good considering that the shipped served over 10,000 meals a day. Our next stop would be Nassau in the Bahamas.

 

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Nassau

by on Dec.27, 2013, under Family

In the morning we pulled in Nassau the capitol of the Bahamas. It would be a day of fun on board and for Joyce and I a quick trip ashore for some provisions as in rum. The weather was perfect so the children spent time in the pool. The pool served two purposes swimming as well as a movie theater since there was always a Disney movie playing on the jumbo screen. There was soft ice cream available all the time, so life was good for the younger generation and the adults as well. Sun bathing, swimming and of course there were lots of organized activities. Brenn and Alexandra went on a tour of the ship solving a mystery that had clues on multiple decks as well as fore and aft. They were a successful team, solving the crime of the missing puppy,

Brenn see's Nassau from his veranda The Atlantis from the shipDocked in NassauHeidi, Gary relaxing on deckPool time for CaitlinAlexandra watches the movie Kinsey in the pool Welcome to NassauNassau dutie free store

 

That evening it was time for a Disney live show before dinner. The Prado’s like the front row so they can interact with the performers. Again, it turned out to be first class entertainment.

Prado Family front row centerWelcome to the Disney show

 

That evening it was time to leave Nassau for the next stop Castaway Cay.

Dusk in Nassau

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Christmas Eve at Castaway Cay

by on Dec.27, 2013, under Family

The Disney Dream was docked at the Island owned by Disney called Castaway Cay. Today would be a day at the beach, with a bar-b-que lunch. Everyone enjoyed the beach time in perfect Bahamas weather. The children spend time in the ocean, and adults cooled off with a dip or in the shade. We did a little exploring of the island that at one time served as a major drug distribution center. There are old abandoned aircraft next to the runway that now serves as a bike bath.

Castaway CayBeach timeJen takes some shadeMike and Heidi toe in the water Private poolCastaway Cay BeachBrennDisney Dream at CastawayCastaway Christmas Tree

Back on board it was time to get ready for another live show and then Christmas Eve dinner.

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Christmas Day

by on Dec.27, 2013, under Family

We all met for Christmas morning in the Star Bucks coffee lounge, on a balcony overlooking the main gathering area. There was face painting, Christmas goodies, carols and Disney characters creating a very festive atmosphere. Some coffee for the adults, then the gift exchange. This year there were a few gifts for each person, small because we had to carry them on in our luggage. It was different than the paper tearing frenzy of past years but everyone enjoyed family and the real meaning of Christmas.

Chrstmas mornig goodies Goofy's Merry ChristmasCaitlinKinseywatching gift being openedA gift for AlexandraDad helps Alexandra with her new IPADBrenn likes his Kindle fireKinsey's new doll

After exchanging gifts we all had breakfast together, then it was time for activities. We met before the evening show for the family picture by the big tree in the gathering area.

Christmas 2013

 

After another great Disney live performance, it was time for our last dinner on board. That evening we packed, since we needed to be ready to leave early. The Prado’s were off the ship the next morning early and on their way to Savannah. The Montgomery’s, Joyce and I had breakfast at eight and then disembarked. It could not have been smoother and we were in the air by 10:15 AM and home by noon. When we landed we called everyone and they were just getting to their homes, safe and sound. We had a great family Christmas together, thanks Disney Cruises.

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Thanksgiving 2013

by on Dec.04, 2013, under Family

Brother Mike and Sister Patty arrived from Oregon on the Monday before Thanksgiving. We had Tuesday to hang out and catch up. Weather cold and rainy so they felt right at home. Wednesday evening Jennifer, Mike and Alexandra arrived from Florida. Thursday, we celebrated in at traditional family way with breakfast, football, Thanksgiving dinner, and more football, with lots of socializing the whole day. Alexandra has been working hard with school and her many extra curricular activity so she really enjoyed watching TV and just being a 9 year old girl. Thanksgiving dinner was fantastic, with Patty and Jennifer helping Joyce the master chef prepare the traditional feast.

Patty and Joyce aat workJen in the kitchenGil prepares to carveAlexandra thumbs upThanksgiving Dinner

 

We all had much to be thankful for and enjoyed just being family.

 

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