Catching up

Non-Halloween related stuff. Same rules: family oriented, no flaming, be nice. ;-)
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TheHeadlessHorseman
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Catching up

Post by TheHeadlessHorseman » Tue Mar 26, 2024 10:21 pm

It looks like I missed some great conversations while I wasn't here, I hope that everyone here has been doing well. :D

I've been busy with life, we just got back from Florida, we were there for 2 weeks and it was our first family vacation since the pandemic. The main reason we went was to celebrate my grandaunt's birthday, she is turning 99 this year. Her birthday is actually later in the year, but this is when most of the family was available to travel. She is still doing well for her age, she has lots of energy, her memory is still sharp, and she is still independent, but man is she grouchy. :lol: She spent most of the time telling us adults that we wasted a trip, we should go home and just come back next year when she hits the big one. While she was a bit cranky with the adults, I could tell she was happy to be with her great grandkids.

My mother and younger sister and her family came with us to Florida, and we got to spend time with my older sister, who lives there, so it was good to catch up with her and her family, and we did a lot of fun things while we were there. We went to visit Disney World for the first time since 2018, and while the kids had a great time there, the place that everyone really enjoyed, myself in particular, was Universal Studios Florida. This was the first time I've been back there since I was a kid, and it was great back then, but now that place is AWESOME! They have a whole world of Harry Potter things to do, and we got to ride the Hogwarts Express, and they had a few different stores like Ollivanders Wand shop, it was almost impossible to get the kids away from that part of the park.

They have a whole area dedicated to The Simpsons, with places and stores right out of the show like the Kwik-E-Mart, and a Fast Food Boulevard, with Luigi’s Pizza, and a Krusty Burger. There was even a place cleverly named Lisa’s Teahouse of Horror, which had a selection of healthy options for guests. I wish they had a Simpsons land when I was a kid, I had so much fun while I was there, and if it was up to me I wouldn't ever leave, but my family reminded me that I live in the real world.

There was also a few stores that had classic Universal Monsters merchandise, and I got a bunch of stuff that I didn't really need, but I couldn't resist. I going to be honest, while we had fun at Disney, I have to say that Universal Studios blew them away with their attractions and options for guests, I could go on and on about their other attractions, but I would be sitting here typing for the rest of the day, though I definitely recommend that if you are a fan of any of the franchises that I mentioned, that you visit this place at least once in your life. This is the best vacation I've had with my kids, and I'm thankful that this time they are old enough to remember the trip.

Aside from that, I would sit up at night in the hotel room while everyone was sleeping and I would read the posts on the forum, there were some things I wanted to comment on but I knew I wouldn't be able to stay in touch, so I waited until now. I think it's awesome that both Murf and Andy know so much about their family history, I can only track my mother's side of the family back to the late 1800s, and I know that they came from the California and Texas area. I know very little about my father's side, only that they are Canadian and they came from England.

Murf - I hope that your son is enjoying his new experiences in Chicago. I know what you mean about your daughter not eating pork, my mother is the same way, even though she didn't have a issue handling or cooking it for us.

Andy - Dude, you are the youngest of 11 kids? Was your mother trying to start her own branch of the Army? :lol: I know you said that she had 15 pregnancies, I told my mother about that and you should have seen the look on her face, she said she couldn't even imagine what your mother went through.

I read the whole thread, and I must say that both you and Murf have a interesting and impressive family history.

MauEvig - I'm glad that you got to go to a comic con, did you do any cosplaying? I used to go to conventions when I was younger, but I stopped going when I was in my early teens, and I only started going again after I had kids, and we always dress up for it.

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Wed Mar 27, 2024 2:57 am

There are probably some 'Florida Man' jokes in there, but I'm too tired to think of any at the moment.

It sounds like a fun time was had by all, as they say.

Yep, mom was pregnant for approximately a decade of her life.
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Re: Catching up

Post by Murfreesboro » Wed Mar 27, 2024 7:53 am

So great to hear from you, HH, and many congrats to your grandaunt on her birthday!

I've never been to Universal, but everybody around here says it's superior to Disney World. I haven't been to Disney World since before I was married, so I can't talk about what it might be like now. Each of my kids got a trip there with their middle school band, so they've seen it (so did my mother, who went with her sister after I was married). But nowadays everyone is about Universal. I'd dearly love to see that Harry Potter World.

My son is loving Chicago so far, which unnerves my husband. We hear only about how dangerous parts of that city can be, and my husband wants him to come home, or closer to home. I figure he'll have sense enough to stay away from the dangerous areas. I also know that bad things can happen anywhere, including Nashville or even Murfreesboro, for that matter, so you just have to have some faith about it. My son loves the water, and he has an apartment overlooking Lake Michigan, so he sends us pictures of it almost every day. Right now his job is set to last only about a year. He is already trying to figure out how he can stay longer.

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TheHeadlessHorseman
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Re: Catching up

Post by TheHeadlessHorseman » Thu Mar 28, 2024 12:49 am

Thanks Murf. :) I know that we will definitely be going back next year, as the family will be there to celebrate my grandaunt's big birthday. She told us that even if she doesn't make it, that she still wants us to get together to celebrate the occasion so she knows that everyone is happy, and she said that if we don't show up she will haunt each and every one of us. :lol: I know she is a tough woman, and she has been through a lot to make it this long, so I don't doubt that she is still going to be around for awhile. There are some other big birthdays to celebrate next year as well, my mother is going to be 70, and my older sister is going to be 50. Man, where did the time go?

I have to say that if you ever do get to visit Universal and the Harry Potter world, that you will be amazed at the detail that they put into the attractions, some of the places are so incredibly detailed you feel like you are right in scenes from the movies. While I personally enjoyed The Simpsons land more because the show was so important to my generation, I'm being honest when I tell you that the Harry Potter world was more rewarding because of the experience my kids had, just watching their faces light up while they were immersed in that world is something that I won't ever forget.

We were on vacation for 2 weeks, and I wish that we were there longer. I think that going on this vacation made me realize how much I missed traveling, and it's something that I'm going to make sure that we do more often, as there are so many interesting places that I want to visit. I saw your post about the hotel in Red Boiling Springs, I've always wanted to visit a haunted hotel and I hope that I will eventually, whether it's a real or fake haunting, I just don't want to bring the kids to a place like that when they are young, so maybe when they are older.

I'm glad to hear that your son is enjoying Chicago, I haven't been there in awhile but I have some great memories from my trips there. You also said that he is trying to find a way to stay there longer, who knows? Maybe he will find that special someone while he is there, and then he would have a really good reason to stay. :)

I understand both sides of the situation, as parents it's natural to worry about your kids regardless of their age, and you always want them close enough just in case something happens, but like you said, danger can happen anywhere so you just have to be careful out there. On the other side of that, I know that he is a young man seeking his independence, trying to forge his path and become his own person, it's something that most of us do eventually, and even if parents don't want to admit that their kids are growing up, most parents know that you have to let them spread their wings and fly. I was 19 when I got my first apartment, and my mother told me she was proud of me for it, then she told me she couldn't wait to use my old bedroom for a studio. :lol: I know that one day I'm going to go through the same thing with my kids, but they are both still under 10 so thankfully I still have awhile to go.

By the way, we recently watched Ghostbusters 4, I won't give any spoilers but I will say it was a really good movie, and it was WAY better than part 3, did anyone else here watch it yet?

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Thu Mar 28, 2024 2:04 am

Which part 3?

The all lady cast or, original cast reboot?

I watched the latter and it was...acceptable.
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Re: Catching up

Post by Murfreesboro » Thu Mar 28, 2024 9:35 am

I haven't seen any of the newer Ghostbusters movies, but I've heard that the more recent ones (not the lady cast) are pretty good.

I'm certainly hoping my older son can find his SO while I'm still young enough to enjoy grandchildren. For that matter, I wish they all would. You reach a point with adult kids where you want to see them settled, you know? The where doesn't matter as much to me as just knowing they are going to be OK.

Your aunt sounds so cute, threatening to haunt you all if you don't get together on her 100th, even if she should pass away first. That sense of humor has probably helped her get this far.

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Thu Mar 28, 2024 3:04 pm

I agree, if you lose your sense of humor it's time to hang it up.
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Re: Catching up

Post by TheHeadlessHorseman » Thu Mar 28, 2024 11:19 pm

My grandaunt has a devious sense of humor, I think at her age she just doesn't care what people think so she just says what she wants to, so she even tells dirty jokes in front of the kids, thankfully they have no clue what she is talking about. :lol:

I've been tall and skinny my whole life, but like most men my age, I've been putting on a little extra weight around my midsection, and the whole time I was there my grandaunt was calling me pudgy. She would say... Come and give me a hug pudgy... and then she would stick me in the tummy. :lol:

My wife certainly enjoyed it, even before we went on vacation she would make fun of me when I get undressed, she told me that I look like a chicken with a chubby top, and skinny legs below. To be honest, getting fat doesn't bother me, but going bald hurts.

Well, the modern Ghostbusters movies have been out for awhile, but since Murf hasn't watched them yet I will try not to give any spoilers but I will give my opinion on them.

The female Ghostbusters movie takes place in a alternate reality, so while it is the third movie to be released in the Ghostbusters franchise, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is part 3.

Ghostbusters: Afterlife was a sad, sorry, pathetic excuse of a movie. It was a just like Rogue One, you had to sit through 2hrs of boring filler to get to 5 mins of good stuff at the end of the movie.

They spend the whole movie badmouthing Egon's character, and rightfully so, because the idiot that wrote the story turned him into a jerk that would leave his family for such a stupid reason, and the time frame between part 2 and 3 is inaccurate when it comes to his family. Then they can't even come up with a new villain, they just bring back Gozer because they are lazy and just went with what was familiar to the fans instead of writing something new. I mean seriously, Gozer AGAIN?

I honestly think that the female Ghostbusters movie was better than Ghostbusters 3, and believe me, before Ghostbusters 3 came out I didn't think I would have ever said that, but that's how I feel about it. I wasn't a fan of the female Ghostbusters movie, but at least they tried something new, and had a actual story. Ghostbusters 3 is a perfect example of how not to write a movie, and the only reason fans said it was good, even though it sucks, is because the fans were so against the female Ghostbusters.

I think the reason fans hated the female Ghostbusters is because it was another example of Hollywood trying to take popular franchises and make them appeal to female fans, while ignoring what the franchise is actually about. Here's the thing with that, I think that female franchises are important to send young viewers a positive message that regardless of gender you can be anything that you want to be, and there are already plenty of female centered franchises that exist that they could turn into movies, or they could even create new franchises, but they choose to take a male centered franchise and turn it female, and then use social media to push their agenda that anything associated with being a male franchise is wrong. That's why the fans turned against the movie, some of them without even watching it.

Ghostbusters wasn't ever about gender, the different cartoons over the years has had multiple female members, and when we were kids we let the girls play Ghostbusters with us, they got a proton pack and pretended to bust ghosts just like us and nobody ever told them that they couldn't do it. So that's one good thing about Ghostbusters 3 and 4, they have both genders on the team.

As I said before, Ghostbusters 4 is a really good movie, and I'm glad the franchise is back where it should be. The only thing I thought was unnecessary about it was that there are 11 members on the team now. Maybe for the next movie Andy and his siblings could join the team, and then we would have 22 Ghostbusters! :lol:

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Fri Mar 29, 2024 12:15 am

Ha!

When my mom was asked what her thoughts were at the time when she had enough kids to make a baseball team she replied that she was happy that there weren't enough to make a football team.
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Re: Catching up

Post by MauEvig » Sat Apr 20, 2024 7:07 pm

No cosplaying here, but we did wear some cool tee shirts. Honestly it was a bit of a spur of the moment thing since the SRO (School Resource Officer) I work with was talking about it during "car duty." Every morning we have to make sure the kids cross safely into the school building, and believe it or not it can get crazy with the traffic. But the SRO is cool, he's a big nerd and so we spend mornings talking about movies, comic books and cartoons.
The highlight was meeting the legendary Jim Cummings. :)

Glad you had a good time in Florida, Headless. I think making the trip was worth it, because one just never knows when the next visit will be our last. But at least she enjoyed her great-grand kids. I'm happy to say I did get the opportunity to meet some of my own great-grandparents. I feel like that's such a rare thing.
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Re: Catching up

Post by Murfreesboro » Sun Apr 21, 2024 10:13 am

I didn't even know all my grandparents. Both my grandfathers died before I was born. But I did know my grandmothers. My own mother had only one living grandparent, her mother's mother, and that woman died when Mama was three.

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Sun Apr 21, 2024 3:03 pm

I never met any of my grandparents, the last one passed when I was only 6 months old.

It still blows my mind the my maternal grandfather was born in 1883.
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Re: Catching up

Post by Murfreesboro » Mon Apr 22, 2024 7:58 am

Well, as I've said, my maternal grandfather was born in 1875, and that's pretty mind-blowing for me, too, even though I know I'm older than you. But in the South, we still think about Reconstruction (at least, those of us with deep roots do), and that means my grandfather was born before it ended. That's astonishing to me.

My father's paternal grandparents lived in the home with him when he was a boy. That grandfather was a Confederate veteran. I wish I'd had a chance to talk with my father about that.

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Re: Catching up

Post by Andybev01 » Mon Apr 22, 2024 1:26 pm

Good genes and large families make for great histories.
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Re: Catching up

Post by MauEvig » Mon Apr 22, 2024 9:29 pm

Andybev01 wrote: Mon Apr 22, 2024 1:26 pm Good genes and large families make for great histories.
Definitely agree there. I enjoy learning about family histories. :)
Murfreesboro wrote: Mon Apr 22, 2024 7:58 am Well, as I've said, my maternal grandfather was born in 1875, and that's pretty mind-blowing for me, too, even though I know I'm older than you. But in the South, we still think about Reconstruction (at least, those of us with deep roots do), and that means my grandfather was born before it ended. That's astonishing to me.

My father's paternal grandparents lived in the home with him when he was a boy. That grandfather was a Confederate Veteran. I wish I'd had a chance to talk with my father about that.
Wow! Your grandfather was a Confederate Veteran? That's really fascinating! It would have been interesting to talk to him and get his perspective on things.
I know war itself could be a traumatizing event though, so perhaps he might not have had much to say about it? I think my own grandfather who served in World War II had bad nightmares, and very likely had PTSD. People just didn't talk about mental health back then, and men especially were taught to toughen up and be quiet about it.
I really...REALLY don't understand the current climate and attitude about Confederate Veterans these days though. We have a Confederate memorial statue where we live near the courthouse. I can't even imagine anyone daring to tear that down, and I wouldn't want them to. It's history! We should respect that. It's sad. There can never be peace unless you're willing to listen to another person's side and perspective.
Reconstruction was hard on the south, that much is true. I can't fathom how it was actually like to be there and live through it though. But I do think it's amazing how much Robert E. Lee wanted the country to heal after the war. The civil war left its mark on our nation's history though, and that scar I'm afraid might always be there. It's sad, but an unfortunate reality. Not a whole lot of people are sensitive about what really happened, and most just assume it was a black and white conflict. It wasn't, it was much more complex than that.
Slightly off topic...but sometimes I fear we're going to have a new civil war. There's already one on social media.
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