About this Blog: Bread making recipes, knit and crochet projects, wood working, gardening, digital imaging, travel, cruise ships, Labrador Retrievers, and more....

About the Header Image: Idlebrook Wendy Darling Evensen "Wendy" one of our four Labrador Retrievers.

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Friday, September 30, 2011

Seven Links Challenge

Good morning,

My fellow blogger, Quay Po over at Quay Po Cooks tapped me with the Seven Links Challenge.  If you haven't found her blog yet, stop over and take a look at all of the wonderful things she cooks.  AND, she shares her recipes.

I hadn't seen the Seven Links Challenge before Quay Po named me to take it up and do it myself.  It seems I am to search into my own blog and answer seven questions about it.  I am then to name three others to whom to pass this challenge.

OK, I'm game.  ;)  Here we go with the seven questions I am to answer about my blog.

1.  Most Beautiful Post

That has to be the posts about my family.  The most recent is the post about My Honey's Birthday Party.  The image at the top of this post is from that party post.

2.  Most Popular Post

This one still gets hits constantly.  I think it's because Google picked up my images and people come in from there: Oasis of the Seas and Freedom of the Seas in Cozumel, Mexico

3.  Most Controversial Post

Uh, I avoid those since this blog doesn't address controversial issues (as far as I know.) :)

4.  Most Helpful Post

From what I am told, that has to be my Bread Making posts.  If you click that link, you'll go to the Bread Making label where you'll find 56 bread recipe posts.

5.  Surprisingly Successful Post

This was a post I did about the Yacht Cakewalk that I saw in St.Thomas, U.S.V.I.  That one continues to get many, many hits. I think others see the yacht out there sailing around, go to the Internet to find information about it, and find my post.

6.  Post that did not get the attention that it deserved.

I couldn't answer this one.  I don't make the decision about which posts are most popular.  You, the readers, do that.

7.  The post that makes me most proud.

I enjoy blogging and enjoy capturing images and writing about them.  I guess I am quite proud, though, of my Free Form Crochet Techniques post.  I love creating with yarn and creative crochet is a great deal of fun for me.  I am very proud that this post was very well received when it was first posted, is linked from many other sites, and continues to get hits regularly.

OK, I've done it!  Now it is time for me to name three other bloggers to answer the same seven questions.  All three of these bloggers have gorgeous, outstanding blogs. 

If you don't have time, I certainly understand, but I would love to read your answers to the challenge and follow your links:

I have enjoyed this exercise.  I hope you have, too.  ;)


Thursday, September 29, 2011

September Wrap Up - Travel, Dog Shows, and Cruising

Good morning,

September has been such a busy month!  If you are a regular reader, you know we have enjoyed some road trips and I have recently been sharing some of those images.
We are currently on board Freedom of the Seas where a dear friend gave us these beautiful peach colored roses.  Thank you, Jeff!
For our first two weeks here we have had several friends here cruising with us.  We are having a grand time with them so I have not taken very many pictures yet.  I will be doing that soon, though, and will share them here.
Earlier this month back in Cincinnati we went to a dog show where our daughter, Catherine (pictured in center of image - wearing purple shirt), and friend, Erica (pictured with back to camera, preparing to show her dog in an agility event), had very successful days with their dogs.  All of the dogs did extremely well at the show and brought home more ribbons.  :)  We are so proud of them!

While we are out here at sea we have email 24/7, but we are not able to log into your blogs except for a short period while in a US port once a week and have a connection with enough band width.  That is why we can only comment on your blogs once a week instead of more regularly as we do while we are at home with our 24/7 high speed connection. 

So, September is drawing to a close and the leaves are changing color at home.  We so enjoy keeping up with what you are all doing on your blogs and seeing all the color changes.

All the best,

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


Good morning,

As many elegant restaurants as there are here on board Freedom of the Seas, sometimes a piece (or two or three) of pizza just hits the spot.
A few slices of pizza...
...back home in our stateroom...
...can be just right!

I really love the crust on the pizza here.  It's thin and crispy.  In addition to the usual pepperoni and cheese pizzas, there are special pizzas available every day. 

Oh, yum!


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Sailing Out of Port Canaveral, Florida

Good morning,

Freedom of the Seas sails out of Port Canaveral, Florida, each Sunday.  
That beautiful white beach stretches all the way to South Beach (Miami Beach) about three hours South of here by car.

Port Canaveral is one of the most convenient ports we have visited.  If you drive, it's very easy to park and if you fly, there are shuttles from the airport in Orlando directly to the front door of the terminal at the port.
 Ah, here we go again...
 ...out to sea on the beautiful Freedom of the Seas.
 Here is our ever-present security escorting us safely out for another week at sea.


Monday, September 26, 2011

St. Maarten, Dutch West Indies

Good morning,

Today's images are from our stop at the Port of St. Maarten, Dutch West Indies.
This is a port of call on Freedom of the Seas' Eastern itinerary.  The above image is of the commercial side of the port.
A short walk from the ship there is a modern shopping mall with all of the stores that are also found downtown across the bay.
If you want to go into the old part of town you can take a water taxi.

The water taxi ride itself is fun as you travel to the little town you see in the center of the above image.
Just beautiful!

A short programming note:  Yesterday when I was setting up my new header I accidentally posted something that I needed to delete.  That seemed to pop in to everyone's reader overwriting yesterday's post with a short film clip about the medical evacuation from the ship.  If you missed it and you're interested, the medical evacuation post below this post or you can click to see it here.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

Medical Evacuation from Labadee

Good morning,

When an accident occurs or someone becomes ill while on a cruise, a medical evacuation may be necessary.  That's just what happened recently aboard Freedom of the Seas on our way to Labadee, one of Royal Caribbean's private islands in the Caribbean.

Following is a short video of the arrival of the helicopter while the ship was tied up in Labadee:

The helicopter landed on the dockside for safety reasons rather than on the helipad on the bow of the ship.
One of the ship's fire emergency teams was on stand-by in case of emergency.
The entire process went quickly and smoothly.
Labadee is a beautiful tropical island for a vacation, but there is no specialized medical care here.
Freedom of the Seas has a hospital with a staff of two doctors and three nurses, but for specialized care, patients are evacuated.
If the ship is close to a port where there is a hospital, the ship may divert from its itinerary to land the patient there.  Sometimes the US Coast Guard will come out to the ship near a port to pick up a patient. An evacuation by air is another alternative.
It took about thirty minutes for the entire process of the arrival of the helicopter, loading of the patient, and take off.
The patient was taken to Miami, Florida...
...where she was transferred to a medical jet that took her to a hospital in her home town.
And, off she goes...
...soon to be in the care of her doctor at home.
We understand she is doing well.

Every cruise is different.


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Princess Fiona is Aboard Freedom of the Seas!

Good morning,

Look who I found here on board Freedom of the Seas!
I was sitting at the Bull & Bear with friends when Princess Fiona came strolling down the Royal Promenade.  She is a favorite with everyone!  I got up to take her picture and she asked if I would like to have a picture with her.
Of course, I said YES!

It is so much fun having Dreamworks here!  We have a TV channel dedicated to Dreamworks movies and have the characters here live and in person!

Cruising is so much fun!  ;)


Friday, September 23, 2011

Beautiful Sea Day - Freedom of the Seas

Good morning,

The weather can be "rock and roll" out here on the high seas at this time of the year.  Although the ship goes around storms, we can feel the effects from many miles away.
During most of the time, the "ride" is so smooth on such a large ship that very little movement is felt.  We enjoy the movement of the ocean and miss it when we are not here.
This day the seas were a little rough, but the skies were absolutely gorgeous!
I just love the colors of the sea foam alongside.
 I keep having to refill my camera with blue.  ;)
 Here you see the sea reflected in the windows of the dining room.



Thursday, September 22, 2011

Back Aboard Freedom

Good morning,

We are back aboard Freedom of the Seas.  After the first hour on board, we felt we had never left.  :)
We are sailing out of Port Canaveral, Florida, alternating weeks in the Western and Eastern Caribbean.  Far off on the horizon in the above image is Cape Canaveral.  When here on launch days, the space launches could be watched.  Sadly, there aren't many launches any more.
We have dear friends sailing with us for two weeks and were surprised and delighted when these arrived from them via the on board florist.  Thank you, Martha and Russell!  :)))  We so enjoy your being here!
On Day Two of each cruise a highlight is the Captain's Welcome Aboard party.  On the bridge in the middle of this image are two singers entertaining the crowd before the Captain's arrival.
The Royal Promenade, shops, and restaurants are all filled with people.
 The party is formal and everyone looks so lovely.
 And then the Captain arrives via the sky bridge to introduce his senior officers.
 This is one of the shops on the Royal Promenade named for one of the Royal Caribbean International slogans.

Above the shop sign are windows of cabins that overlook the Royal Promenade.  What a fun perspective on the happenings of the ship!

So, we are here again for another beautiful ten weeks at sea.  My blog necessarily runs a few days behind because I only have enough band width to upload images while we are in US ports, generally on Sundays.  The rest of the week we have email 24/7, but it is via satellite which is much slower and with limited band width.

I also have quite a few images from our trips just before returning to the ship.  Now that we are here, I have the opportunity to work on them, write about them, and to share them here with you on my blog.  So, my posts may seem just a little out of order.

All the best,