The airport- a microcosm of society?

Last weekend on a snowy day, I ventured to Philadelphia International Airport to catch a flight to Chicago for the ASUG Volunteer Planning Meeting.  Since the roads were clear and schools were delayed two hours, I got there plenty early and had time to relax with a cup of coffee at Peet’s (Terminal E) and walk easily to the gate.  During the pre-flight and flight itself, I thought that I would jot down whatever societal observations I could.  Is the airport a microcosm of society?  A peek inside our lives?  Probably not, but there was some funny stuff going down!! Continue reading “The airport- a microcosm of society?”

Blizzard of 2010

While Royersford was spared the brunt of the Blizzard of 2010, we were deep in the heart of it.  Central Park reported 20 inches of snow and we can confirm it- since we were there for it!  Why? Since the ‘show must go on’, that meant we did too…

For Christmas, Staci and I decided to take Abby and our niece Katherine to see the Rockettes and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular.  Calendars were checked and tickets were bought.  In the beginning of December.  When there was not even a Farmer’s Almanac entry for snow.  See where this is going? Continue reading “Blizzard of 2010”

Christmastime in the Nation’s Capital

DISCLAIMER: Sorry, but this is going to be a long post!!

This weekend it was REALLY cold weekend in Washington, DC with highs only in the 30’s and wind chills even lower! But we braved the chill to enjoy the capital all dressed up for the holidays and were rewarded for our efforts.

After a late start on Friday night, we arrived at the Omni Shoreham. What a classic hotel- a grand dame of DC. The lobby is decked out with over a dozen individually themed and decorated Christmas trees that people bid on, with the proceeds donated to the Special Olympics. Abby’s favorite was the Disney themed tree, its ornaments being stuffed animals.

Saturday was a self-guided walking tour. On the Ellipse- the National Christmas Tree and Ye Olde Yule Log, the White House and Treasury Building were the mornings sights. We started to get hungry and luckily Abby decided that she was not in the mood for the food court, so we kept walking and stumbled onto a Pret a Manger- probably one of our favorite cafes in the world! After a visit to a Christmas Market, it was back to the Shoreham for a break before the ZooLights at the National Zoo.

Sunday brought a cold, rainy day. We toughed out the weather and headed to the Noon Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Really pretty church that took over 80 years to complete. We then took a late brunch at Dupont Circle before wandering through the Kramerbooks and wandering through the stacks. We finished the day at Kennedy Center for the Holiday Pops concert- which was a nice treat!

Staci was in her conference all day Monday, leaving the day to just Abby and I. Abby made her choices and we were off! National Air & Space Museum, Smithsonian Castle and the American History Museum were the days activities. The evening brought the Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial and the Willard Intercontinental Hotel. Dinner warmed us up before a freezing trip back to the Ellipse to see the tree and yule log lit up at night!

We spent Tuesday morning recovering! I took Abby across the street to Open City for an excellent breakfast and then packed up for the trip home. On the way, we took a detour to Monkton to hang out with Alec and Megan. Had a great time hanging out and a good dinner out of it too!

And to cap off an awesome weekend: On US 1 in Nottingham, PA we saw a really big display of Christmas lights from the highway. We made a U-Turn to see what it was…and it turned out to be a treat! The Herr’s factory has the ‘Holiday Tradition Family Lights’ display. 400,000 lights are displayed as you drive around the Herr’s grounds. Awesome display and definitely worth the trip if you’re local! Here’s a link to check it out for yourself! Herr’s Holiday Lights Family Tradition

Lastly- here’s a slideshow with some of the highlights! Click the balloon icon to see any captions that might pop-up…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Walking for a good cause

On this brisk November morning in the City of Brotherly Love, we walked and ran (mostly walked, save for three brave souls in much better shape than the rest) in honor of my mother-in-law, Terri Wilhelm.  The occasion was the Philadelphia Walk for Hope, the National Brain Tumor Society’s fundraiser for research, awareness and advocacy on behalf of patients, survivors and families affected.  It’s been 2 years since Terri passed away and Team T-Dawg walked again to honor her. And this year, I was also walking to support my close friend, co-worker and brain tumor survivor, Jason Bajorek.

I am really glad that we take the time each year to remember her and show support for others battling this disease.  It’s a small sacrifice to walk and seeing Terri’s memorial on the Wall of Hope at the walk’s conclusion reminds me that it’s always worth it. 

We had great weather this year and enjoyed a crisp fall day in Fairmount Park with over 5,000 other supporters who raised over $750,000 to help in the battle against brain tumors.  If you’re interested in supporting the fight, donations are still accepted!  Head to www.raceforhopepa.org, click the donations tab and search for me. 

Here are some of the photos I shot today during the walk.

The Schuylkill River from the Girard Street Overpass :

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Center City from West River/MLK Drive

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It’s fall…

It’s fall and I know that I should I probably have a more seasonal picture at the header of my blog- but I don’t think so.  This particular picture does have some particular meaning.  It was taken in Ocean City, Maryland in 2008.  This was the first morning of our annual family vacation to the beach and Staci managed to wake me up to look at the sunrise- which is a small miracle in itself.

As I lay in bed watching the sunrise, I realized how lucky I was to be blessed with the life I have.  You know, the things everyone says they have- at least in public.  But I know that I have them: great family, beautiful wife, lovely daughter, brothers in arms.

So, I decided that I wanted to document these thoughts- I got up from bed, kissed my wife, grabbed the camera and took that picture.  So while, I might change the picture every so often, this will probably be my anchor image.  And I think that it just makes sense.

New Blog Location!

Well, I’ve decided to move my blog from our .Mac home page to WordPress.  This is mainly because with .Mac, the only way I could update it is via iWeb on my iMac.  Which was becoming a pain- If I wanted to just throw up quick update, it required a site change to golasalle.net and an upload of the change.  Now with WordPress, I can update from my Netbook, the internets and even my BlackBerry!!

So, make sure to bookmark this new site: blog.golasalle.net and make me an RSS feed.  I’m hoping that now I can update things a whole lot quicker!!