Friday, March 31, 2017

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament For Spring Break

Do you have plans for spring break this year? I got an email inviting my family to spend an evening with Medieval Times, which I of course replied, "Yes," to! If you're coming to the Maryland area, specifically near Baltimore for spring break, be sure to spend an evening here.

You really can't beat a meal and a show like this. They have special prices for this spring break: $37.95 for adults and $29.05 for students & kids. You have to use the code SB3729 when you place your order. To top it off, they're offering a free Jr. Knights Training & free activity book for children 5-12 yrs old. Now, spots are limited so it's first come first served. The shows available for this are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday (April 11-13th).

We've been to this show before and I was so excited to be back. Now, the only "issue" I have with visiting Medieval Times is I want to take pictures of every exciting moment. hahahahaha I want to capture it so I can remember it. You have no idea how much I enjoy this show. I really take the whole experience in.

Our server was a really nice gal! She brought our first course of soup, and it was delicious. I asked the youngest to try a sip, and when he didn't want it I polished it off for him. I'm a helper like that. As we were enjoying the soup the show was starting. We were sitting in the black & white knight's section. Sadly our section wasn't very enthusiastic at first. There were some special guests in two rows of midshipmen and they really got into it. That was fun to watch.

The meal was fantastic! Our server started with me, and reassured me that the dragon leg tasted just like chicken. It took me a second to register that she she'd said the word, "dragon," and that she was just kidding because...a dragon. Then we got a potato and corn added to our large plate! You might not think you'll be full by the time the show is done, but we were stuffed!

The first competition our knight kept winning. That meant he kept giving out carnations! We were in the back so I wasn't worried about him throwing me one. Plus, it makes me feel weird. lol Well, let me just say, our black & white knight was having a good night! He kept getting carnations. At one point my youngest was standing up to try and get a carnation. heh heh heh After one of the last competitions, Fred basically made me stand up. Sure enough, the knight kissed his flower and flung it at me. hahahahaha Oh dear!

Amidst the tournament there were a couple of amazing horsemanship displays. One man came out and his horse pranced, marched, and danced across the field. There was another group that came out and with a light show performed some amazing displays. Just watching those horses makes me long to get back on a horse. I sure do miss my Winston sometimes!

The time started to wind down and the knights challenged each other to a joust. Our black & white knight was the last to come out. He had to compete against one of the knights who had already won once. It was touch and go for a little bit. Just as we were sure our knight was going to win...He was taken out by the other knight. Nooooo! Aw man, we were all so disappointed. lol

We had such a blast at the show. It was a fantastic way to spend the evening with our family. The next time we have my daughters in town I'll have to be sure to take them. My oldest shares a birthday month with me, and you can celebrate your birthday for free at Medieval Times!

Be sure to check out the specials for spring break! You don't want to miss those deep discounts and the kids are going to want to practice being Junior Knights!

Do you have plans for spring break?

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Jonathan Morrow's 'Welcome to College' Survival Pack Giveaway

Welcome to College
by Jonathan Morrow
Published by Kregel
ISBN: 9780825444883

With my son's upcoming graduation from high school, I thought reading this book as a review would be a great idea! When I received the offer, I couldn't say, "No." This is a book my son will be getting this summer as he gets ready to hopefully go to college!


Is there a more frightening question for a graduating high school senior than "What will you do with your life?" In college, whether they realize it or not, students will answer that question every day with each decision. All of the new friends and new experiences of higher education will shape their future. It's critical that students know how to handle college before they're in the thick of it.

Jonathan Morrow tackles the tough questions that arise during these formative years, including:
  • How do you grow spiritually?
  • How do you manage your time to both study well and have fun?
  • Is all truth relative?
  • Are there good reasons to be a Christian?
  • As a Christian, how should you view issues like dating and sex?

Each chapter of this new edition has been updated, and the author has included a new chapter on Christianity, homosexuality, and the Bible. Grounded in both his own extensive experience and biblical truth, Morrow's book is full of quick, easy-to-read chapters and excellent advice.

My review:

I'm not one to highlight or write in a book except on the rare occasion. Welcome to College was one of those rare occasions. To start with, I like at the end of each chapter they have "The Big Ideas" which covers the main points of what was just read. Most often the Big Ideas had 1 or 2 of the pieces I highlighted.

I like that the chapters are short & digestible. My son isn't a reader, and while he probably won't read this straight through, he can read a chapter here and there. I'm even considering doing a study on it with him. At the end of the book are questions for each chapter, so it will give us a spring board for diving in. Really, this book encourages them to live their own faith. They're leaving mommy & daddy's covering (well he's going to community college to start) and they've got to figure out what they truly believe as an individual.

One of the words I really grabbed onto was "Christianophobia." The author covers what that is in the chapter called True Tolerance. I found that to be a really good chapter...they all are really. I liked how he integrated his college experience into what he's teaching those who are going out into the big world. And the thing is, you don't have to be going to college to read this. It's a good world view book all around. We all have a world view, but what might yours look like?

I really think this book is exhaustive and covers an array of topics that I just never would've probably thought to discuss with my kids. I know I didn't with my girls as they headed off to college. Thankfully I have time with my son, well both of them, but more "urgently" my baby boy who's no longer a baby!

Welcome to College Jonathan Morrow

Does your high school senior nervously gulp when asked what his or her life plans are? Give him or her encouragement and peace of mind with Jonathan Morrow's Welcome to College, what J. P. Moreland calls "the single best volume I have ever read for preparing students for how to follow Jesus and flourish as his disciple in college." Jonathan Morrow tackles the tough questions that arise during these formative years. Each chapter of this new edition has been updated, and the author has included a new chapter on Christianity, homosexuality, and the Bible.

Join Jonathan and other parents prepping their kids for college in celebrating the excitement of the next life stage for their kids by entering to win the College Survival Pack Giveaway (details below) and by attending his author chat party on April 11!

One grand prize winner will receive:
  • One copy of Welcome to College
  • One $50 Target gift card
  • One $25 Amazon gift card
  • One $25 Starbucks gift card
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 11. The winner will be announced at the Welcome to College Facebook party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Jonathan and other parents with kids prepping for college, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

RSVP today and spread the word-tell your friends about the giveaway via social media and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 11th!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Wordless Wednesday - Cherry Blossoms In Washington D.C.

Last weekend was supposed to be the pinnacle of the blooming season for the cherry blossom trees. Fred, his daughter, and I drove down to spend some time walking amongst the trees. I think thousands of others had the same idea, too!

I really wish my phone's camera were better at capturing color and detail. Sadly it doesn't and I never carry a camera any more. The second photo is probably the best one I got all day.

I just loved the trunks of the trees. They had so much character. I wonder why the parks department doesn't alter ones where they're growing low and over the sidewalk. Maybe altering it would kill it. I'm not sure. They were really cool to look at though.

So, if you look at the top left of the map, that's where we walked. We never saw the welcome area until we were leaving. The large part that takes up the rest of the map is what we missed. It was kind of funny because when we got to the welcome area and saw the map, I noticed that there were a huge variety of trees. Not until I was making this blog post did I realize why we didn't see a variety because I thought we had walked around all of the trees. Apparently the different ones were in the larger area. lol I'll have to try to remember that for next year!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Sight & Sound Theatres Jonah

The weekend before last, Fred drove us up to Pennsylvania for an overnight trip. We were finally watching my Christmas present happening. He got us tickets to see the show Jonah at Sight & Sound Theatres. He's been telling me about it for a few years, but we've never had the chance to go.

We had our friend, Tony, from our young adults group at church came and stayed with the boys. They just dig him and we do too! He got to our house just after Fred and I headed out. One of the nice pieces to our weekend is that we had no plans other than the show that night.

We made our way to the Lancaster Central Market to start the day. It was such a neat place. It was a wonderland of vendors. We ended up buying a handmade hot pad, black raspberry jam, an ultra long biscotti, orange cream milk (tastes like a creamsicle), and fresh spinach pasta. We could've spent an hour walking through it all again!

From there we went to a coffee shop where we picked up a bag of their coffee and Fred got a double shot of espresso. Then we went to a shop just a couple doors down, and as soon as we walked in we heard Christian music playing. It was a family owned sweet shop. We, well I, got several pieces of chocolate.

I finally was at the point of being hungry for dinner so we finished heading to the Sight and Sound Theatre location to find lunch.

I have to tell you, I was in wide eyed wonder as we saw the horses and buggies riding along the road. We even saw a man in his field with 6 horses hitched up, and it looked like he was tilling the soil. I would've loved to have stopped and watched him work all day.

We checked into our room at the Hershey Farm Restaurant & Inn which is next to the Sight & Sound property. We could've walked there if it hadn't been 25ºF! They have three different sections to their property. Our room as in the carriage house. It was a simple, clean room. I loved that it was a hop, skip, and a jump from the theater. There's a pond, walking trails, and farm animals that can be enjoyed when the weather improves!

After we ate a buffet dinner we headed directly to the theater. For future reference, make reservations early, around 5pm so that you're not rushing through dinner to make it to the theater in time.

I was wowed as we drove up to park at the theater. I had no idea how huge this place was going to be. I hadn't even read up about what we were seeing or what was involved. In a way, I'm glad because what I was about to see wouldn't have done justice just by reading about it. I do wish we would've read the book of Jonah before we saw the show. I've read it before, but it would've been great to have the story fresh in my mind.

We sat up in the balcony, right at the first row. The lights dimmed and the show began.

I'll be honest, I was kind of expecting a good ol' college try at a show, but this, for me, this was Broadway worthy! True, I've never seen a Broadway show, but this is exactly how I would picture one.

The set was phenomenal. It wasn't only in front of it; it was all around us! The sides of the stages would open up and the show would extend to the sides as well. Being there on opening night, I was a little concerned that there would be acting nerves, but you'd have thought they'd been doing Jonah for months!

Again, not knowing what to expect, it had every element that one could hope for. The songs were strong and fantastic. There was humor in the acts as well as the seriousness of the story. The set, I can't even tell you, the set blew me away. This is NO low budget show. They pulled out all the stops. The ship that Jonah is thrown from is 30,000 pounds! I'm telling you, the set and the set pieces were amazing!

One of my favorite parts of the whole show was the animals. They just brought such a wonderful element to the production. I mean, you imagine a dog our cats would be normal in a show, but how about a camel, alpaca, or llama? They're something adults and children alike will enjoy.

We had a 10-15 minute intermission, and we just stayed in our seats. During the intermission you can grab a snack like their signature roasted almonds, shop for souvenir, or take a potty break. What's great is, they allow you to bring snacks into the theater.

The second half of the show was just as wonderful as the first. I was sorry to see it come to a close. I felt like it went too quickly. As soon as it was over, I was ready to watch it again. There's so much that goes on during the show, I know I missed bits a pieces.

I'm hoping we can take the kids back in August. I think they'd love it so much. They've never been to a major production, and what better way to be exposed to one than with Jonah. I'm already looking forward to Jesus in 2018.

What production are you hoping to see this year?

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Turkey Hill Experience

On our way up to Sight & Sound Theatres, a couple weeks ago, we passed this building next to the freeway that said, "Turkey Hill Experience." Of course my natural curiosity kicked in and I searched on my phone to find out more. I think as a blogger I'm always on the lookout for new experiences.

As we kept driving towards Lancaster, I decided I would give them a call because I read on their website that visitors had the opportunity to create our own ice cream! Say WHAT?! Now mind you, this is a Saturday afternoon. I wasn't really expecting to talk to someone who'd work with me on the fly, but I had to try, right? As soon as they answered the phone, I was chatting with one of the managers, and the next thing I know, she's emailing me tickets for the next day!! Ice cream, here I we come!

Milk, glorious milk

We got up Sunday morning, had a leisurely breakfast, and then hit the road. We decided the night before that we'd check out some covered bridges on the way back to the Turkey Hill Experience. There were only a few near us, but I love bridges so...

When you visit the Turkey Hill experience, you have two options: THE only or THE + LAB. Either one gives you the opportunity to eat ice cream and sample drinks. The LAB is where you get to make your own ice cream, and honestly for the few extra dollars more, it's entirely worth it! If you choose to experience the LAB you should really make a reservation. Just showing up doesn't mean you'll be able to do it. The rooms hold about 58 people and run at various times during the day. It lasts a little under an hour and you want to get in line about 10 min early.

As you walk in you see the desk to purchase or pick up your tickets. Across from the desk is the Gift Shop. I purchased a shirt after we were done for our day, and I have got to tell you, I had to restrain myself because they prices were insanely affordable. There was a whole wall of shirts for under $8!

We headed upstairs to begin our tour. I think we got there at just the right time because it was noon on a Sunday so most people were probably just getting out of church. We were able to read all about the history of Turkey Hill. I love anything steeped in history, and Turkey Hill was just that!

I have a no so secret desire to live on a hobby farm. I've probably wanted that since I was 5 yrs old or whenever I saw my first horse. lol Learning about cows and dairy farming made my heart do flips. Fred convinced me to "milk" the cow. That was NOT easy. lol I don't know about you, but I remember when my mom used to have milk delivered to our home. We had the milk crate out front, and she would fill out a slip every week for the milk man. When I saw the order card on the wall, I had flashbacks of the days where my parents would talk about what they needed to order, and then coming home with our deliveries sitting outside our home.

My hubby loves tea. I think it's a southern thing. I'm personally not a tea kind of gal. Don't shoot! I do love my milk though. Well, at the Experience you can taste a variety of teas and take a test to see your tea personality. I gave all of the samples a Brownie sample, and ended up giving them to Fred who downed them. lol

We kept walking around and that's when I think I found where I wanted to spend the rest of my days and their ice cream sampling station. They had no limit to how much you ate. NO. LIMIT! I chose their Double Dunker. It was delicious!

It was getting close to our time for our LAB so we went to the stations where you create your virtual containers, create a flavor, and have fun with what you'd think it would be like when you're in the factory. My ice cream was called Mimi's Marvelous Moo. Kinda catchy, eh?

We got in line with a group of other people waiting to enter the LAB. This was where the magic happened. We started off with a pint of vanilla ice cream. As we went about our ice cream creations, an employee of THE taught us more about their whole process from the farm to the factory to the stores. It was fun making our creations while we learned more!

The great part was, she encouraged us to eat our ice cream as we folded, not stirred, our ice cream. I was all in. I took this part very seriously! We started by putting our flavoring in. I chose the ONE flavor where the more you put in the better. Everyone else was limited to their number of drops. My! Mmmmmm

After we folded in our flavoring, we headed to the inclusion wall where we were able to add about 3 ingredients. Don't tell, but I picked 4. Well, two of the inclusions I chose were just "bits". I started off with toffee bits, then moved on to the espresso puffs. I definitely wanted cookie chunks, and finished with micro chocolate chips.

Then we went back to folding and folding. We all realized that our ice cream was starting to melt even though we were folding, not stirring. To top things off we could add one variegate. Mine was fudge! Right?! The assistants walked around and picked up all of our ice creams so they could sit in a deep freeze for a few minutes.

Once they were frozen again, we took our ice cream and headed back out to the experience. We had such a fun time! We want to go back again with all of the kids. It would be great if we could bring Mum and Pap with us, Fred's parents. Mum loves her ice cream.

What flavor ice cream would you create?

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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.