World Traveler

Monica had the privilege of traveling to England to visit her Aunt Terry. She was great company for her mother and a wonderful guest.  She took photos of every new experience but that is too many to include here! We will share just an overview of the delightful adventure.

We drove across the Ambassador Bridge into Canada and noticed lots of wind turbines along the highway. We checked in at the Toronto airport. We charged our phones and enjoyed the iPads for travelers. The flight to London was smooth. Monica brought knitting, books, workbooks and her iPad. She was too busy to sleep, but when she got on the train out of Gatwick airport she gave in to a few winks.

We changed trains at St. Pancras/Kings Cross. We bought postcards and stamps there.

Monica’s Uncle David picked us up at the Scarborough train station in a car with the steering wheel on the right side and drove on the left side of the road!

Monica loved relaxing and sharing a cup of tea with her family there, but still did her best to help out with emptying and loading the dishwasher and setting the table.IMG_2922

Since we were there for Mardi Gras, Uncle David took us to the Scarborough events for Pancake Day. The Pancake Races had teams from different organizations running obstacle courses while flipping pancakes in crazy costumes. Then we walked to the sea to see Skipping day in which the children remember skipping with the old fishing ropes when the fisherman replaced them with new.


For the first Friday of Lent, Uncle David brought in Fish and Chips and Mushy Peas!20160212_182232

Monica’s cousins arrived on the weekend and we celebrated a birthday together.

Monica was the one who knew how to set the timer on the phone to take a group photo!

On a very windy day, we drove around Scarborough castle and saw the north beach.IMG_2983

After a week of really getting to know her aunt and uncle, we had to leave. 20160215_131319We took the train back to London and Monica’s cousin’s girlfriend met us for a walking tour of Leicester Square, Trafalgar Square, a view of a guard and the entrance to Buckingham Palace, then a stop at the Treasury where her cousin works, a peek at Big Ben and the Eye.

Then supper and good night’s sleep before the Uber taxi took us to the train back to Gatwick.


It was a very long flight with an unplanned fuel and de-icing stop in Quebec City. Monica played her President’s game on her iPad so many times she hit a new high score.20160216_142128

Back at Toronto airport, we scraped the snow off the car when we found it in the long term lot and headed for home. We were so happy to be greeted by Monica’s nieces and nephew!




Donating Pull tabs

At Monica’s first job, she learned about saving pull tabs from soda cans. The organization donated the tabs to Ronald McDonald House in Cleveland. Monica knew the purpose of Ronald McDonald House was to help families stay close by when their child was in the hospital.  Monica had enough hospital experiences to know that you want your family to be near when you are sick.

Since changing jobs, she has been collecting the tabs on her own. Pretty soon, family and friends noticed Monica busy during parties, putting tabs into little baggies or cups. Little by little, people started saving them for her and giving her a little baggie now and then. Last November, when we drove to her cousin’s wedding in Florida, she was thrilled to find out how the Florida family had also been saving them for her.  We were glad we drove and didn’t have to carry them on a plane!

Monica's tabs weighin

Finally, Monica had a day off work so she could donate the tabs. We had her hold them and step on the scale. Ten pounds of pull tabs! Monica enjoyed the drive. It was a beautiful day and we loved the Easter decorations in front of Ronald McDonald House.

frontMonica in front

Today, she started again. Four little tabs are in her container already.

new tabs

Interacting with art in Gallery One at Cleveland Museum of Art

Monica and her cousins had a great time meeting at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Everyone loves playing follow the leader around the plant areas in the atrium.




Monica really enjoyed the interactive art in Gallery One.

Here is one of the features. The computer tries to find art to match your facial expression. They did pretty well with Monica.CMA-Gallery-One-Face
Another experience is matching your own posture to that of a sculpture in the museum. Monica did pretty well with that!CMA-Gallery-ONE-Sculpture

We love that Monica has an eye for beauty. Here is how she put her thank you notes in the mailbox.20141230_125345

Here is a photo she took when we visited the Cathedral of Saint John downtown to look at the nativity scene.
nativity at cathedral