Saturday, January 2, 2016

Lesson 398: 2015 Lamp Post Year in Review

Happy New Year, Readers!

Eloise is looking forward to 2016.

Before we begin anew,
let's spend a few minutes reviewing the year.
This post will have more pictures that words tonight,
but photos express more sentiment than I could ever type.
Photos are important.
Sit down, 
get yourself a drink,
and Eloise will punch your ticket for a ride on the 2015 Life Train.

Eloise on Weather:
Dang it was cold for us here in Erie!

So cold, the forecasters called the weather pattern this:

The snow totals were great for sled riding,

But the mercury readings below zero 
did not allow for outdoor outings that lasted too long!

Niagara Falls were frozen solid.

Even Hell froze over.

hey -- hell froze over i think someone owes me a pony

As we turned the calendar page to March,
we had hope for a warm day--
but the winter marched on.

Sam's 8th birthday on the 27th day of March,
turned an outdoor kickball and cocoa party
into an indoor event---
for 22 boys.

In April, things still weren't much better.

In spite of it all--spring found its way.

The rains came in May

and lasted right through the end of June,
making for a very cold start to summer.

July brought hope,

and we Erieites were able to squeeze in some hot summer days.

The fall here in Erie was gorgeous.

Christmas preparations were done in warmth, too,
except for one weekend dusting a few days before Christmas.

Eloise on Pastimes:
Great book--

I loved it so much I made myself a Paper Town,
and appointed myself the mayor.
Find it, and you too, can become a citizen.

I looked forward to Harper Lee's Go Set a Watchman.
I renamed it Go Set a Timer,
because I read it the second the kindle download became available
and finished it in 8 hours.

I loved to play Trivia Crack.
I used the past tense verb on purpose.
I had to stop playing the game because I wasn't getting my chores done.

I liked writing the questions much more than the actual game play.

Eloise on Music:

Uptown Funk was my kids' favorite song.

Tim McGraw's new album came out
and he did a song with his daughter!

Speaking of Handsome--

I took my hubby to meet my boyfriend in July!

We saw Tim McGraw in concert

at my favorite concert venue--
the outdoor amphitheater in Darien Lake, NY.

We also saw the Zac Brown Band there, too.

We like Adele's new album 25.

The new country artist Cam is very good, too.

Eloise on Screen Favorites:

We loved the Peanuts movie, out in November.

Eloise's favorite was the new Cinderella which came out in March.

Eloise polished up her own glass slipper in December,

and traded my sweats and sneakers for a ballgown.
Hubby and I went to the Barber Ball this year.

The girls and I just saw this movie yesterday.
It was hysterical.

This was my favorite commercial of 2015:

Art installation: Inside, she sees framed gum wrappers lining the walls, each of which has a drawing by Juan on the inside

Happily ever after: The gum commercial has already been viewed millions of times since being uploaded last week

Eloise on Amusements:
(as in parks)

Sam discovered his stomach does not like spinning rides.

Darien Lake is always the crowd favorite here at the Lamp Post.

The boys won big at the carnival games--

they had a bowling game!
They were told not to come back.

The Crawford County Fair always ends our summertime fun every August.

Eloise on Not So Amusing Amusements:

Eloise spent a white-knuckled afternoon at the Peak-n-Peek adventure course.

Daughter Ellen Louise loved it.

Next time, I'll just take the photos.

Eloise on the Truly Amusing:

What color was this dress?

The original image is in the middle. At left, white-balanced as if the dress is white-gold. At right, white-balanced to blue-black.

This robin kept pecking at my window,
and my parents' window next door,
for two weeks straight.

My kid's reaction

when they heard

Grandpa got a cell phone.

If Grandpa got a cell phone,
Sam demanded texting ability.
We set him up on his iPod,

and told him he was only allowed to text Jack and Ellen.

Erik got a hot tub for his birthday--
and we are all amused at how much he loves it.

Eloise on Loves:

In 2015 I mailed my Christmas cards out on Valentine's Day
and none of the recipients complained.

I decorated a Tree of Light in the Harborcreek Community Park.

Not only did folks take the ornaments I hung for them,
but added some of their own!

We love our monthly subscriptions to Birchbox 

and Loot Crate.

We loved the Share a Coke campaign.

Eloise and hubby celebrated 21 years together in August tasting beer here:
Rebel Blond
Train Wreck were my favorites.
(Hubby says, "Go figure.")

Mother Eloise is loving that Sam likes to read
when he finally sits down.
He was Captain Underpants for the Reading Week Celebration

and he found a new friend in Wilbur from Charlotte's Web.

 Eloise on Creativity:

I created a facebook page I titled Finding Joy.
It is open to anyone.
Join up if you missed it.

I created a new game!
Giffle Ball!
It is a combination of golf played with dollar store wiffle balls.
I made a nice Par 50 behind my house.

I discovered it is hard to be creative with all the noise at the Lamp Post.
Mother Eloise came up with a creative solution.

To stay challenged through the summer,
I created a running challenge titled
What the Hill?

11 area hills and a screaming set of calves,

26 Reasons You Should DEFINITELY Be A Runner | Buzzfeed

took a participant to views like this.

Kenyan my sister,
who runs 20 mile training runs for the hell of it
on her afternoons off--

thought my hill choices were too easy
and the shirt was ugly and poorly fitting.
She's coming back in 2016 with What the Hill 2?
Stay tuned.

Eloise on Travel:

We hit the Great Wolf Lodge during Easter break.

We went to historic Gettysburg, PA in July.
They have fantastic lamp posts,

and the best morning fog of any place I've ever visited.

My youtube video that I made of the photos
was my highest viewed post of the year.

We snuck down to and end of summer Pirates game,
the night before I started school on my first Teacher Day.
The game went 15 innings
and I got home at 3:30 in the morning,
and still made it to school on time.

We even ventured a county south to attend our first ever tractor pull.

It was a neat experience with ample photo opportunities.

Eloise and family trekked to the secret waterfall location
in the middle of the Allegheny forest.
Kayla P can give you directions how to find it.

Eloise on 2015 Celebrations:

Grandma turned 70.

Great Grandma L turned either 95 or 96.
There is some debate as to whether you start counting "1"
at the time of your birth.
Who's to argue with someone a few years shy of 100?
Happy Birthday, Great Grandma!

Ellen celebrated #15
and keeps dreaming of the jingling of car keys in the coming year.

My babysitter is now having a baby of her own,

and they boy I babysat now has his own son!

I'll have a drink to that!

My colleagues and I returned to a newly renovated Clark School in June.

Eloise cartwheeled through her ultra-clean 
and uber-organized house 
through the help of this book.

Marie Kondo, exactly what I want to do for 2015, declutter and get rid of stuff

Natalie surprised us all and found a sweetheart.

Ellen surprised us all by inviting 50 people over before the Homecoming Dance.

After a very long road of eye surgeries,
my friend has healed her detached retinas.

We celebrated Back to the Future Day on October 21st.
The blog about Marty McFly was the second highest in hits.

Natalie had her chance to shine in the Miss Shining Star Pageant in November.

Eloise on Passings:

Eloise lost two friends at the close of this year.

A Novel Idea is a six month series that will teach you how to write a novel. You'll have a first draft by the summer!:

My teacher, colleague, and friend,
Tim Miller in November.

My dear friend Sue just yesterday.
Eloise is still too raw to write anything more.

Eloise on Sports:
Hubby had an injury free year on the lanes.

He placed a respectable 11th in the Erie Times News Bowling Tournament.

The kids keep us busy with team sports.

There were wins

and losses

and lots and lots of learning.

This was for hockey but can truly be applied to all things in life!:

Eloise on Autism Awareness:

The world Lit It Up Blue in April

and tolerance are improving.

Statistics are not.


Natalie raised awareness,
and some big $ for the Barber National Institute 
with her Natalie's People t-shirt sale.

Ellen Louise designed the t-shirt for
the 2015 Huskies Walk for Autism.

During a rainy Beast on the Bay,
Natalie was presented with a special award for being one of the top fund raisers.

Training for the Beast is as fun as the event itself.

I brought along a sling-shot this year.

and a whole bunch of Super Friends.

My sister's team and my team combined this year,
and all wore the same shirt.
We got along
(for the most part).

Erik and Natalie completed the adapted course with some really fantastic supporters.

Eloise on Wildlife:
The fish were plentiful in the streams and the lakes.

My lens captured some really remarkable creatures.

Eloise on the Moon:

Eloise on Year's End:

Eloise on Family:

Eloise's Most Notable and Quotable:

Eloise on 2016:
I'm looking forward to capturing life as it happens.
I'm looking forward to capturing YOU.

For a few more photos set to a sweet song,
click on the photo video below.

Peace and Prosperity to you in 2016!

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