Tech Ed. Semi-Annual “Reunion”

29 Jun

This past weekend we traveled down to Orange County, Va, to stay with an old college~mate of Chuck’s.  Every year since he graduated from the VT Technology Education program, his classmates all try to get together (sometimes for weddings, sometimes just for fun).  It’s become a family affair – everyone brings their significant others and we all have a great time with each other…it’s a wonderful group of young professionals who really know how to have fun.

One of his classmates, Jim,  manages an estate for a (rather rich) gentleman in Central Virginia… Jim and his (amazingly sweet and beautiful) wife, Vaughan, invited us all down to spend the weekend on the lovely farm where they live…for two and a half days we all felt like we were at a private resort.  We ate copious amounts of yummy food, spent lots of time playing games, swimming, laughing, talking, catching up, and relaxing.  It was wonderful!

Because we were having so much fun, I didn’t drag my camera out until midway through the weekend, so I don’t get as many pictures as I wished I had, but here is a pictorial of our weekend:

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Standing, left to right:  Chuck, Me, Don, Clint, Lauren, Vaughan, Casey, Jim, Missy, Craig, Whitney, and Ryan.

Crouching, left to right: John, Ginny, Kevin, and Stephanie.  (Oh, and the adorable pup in the front who didn’t realize she was supposed to smile for the camera: Angie).

Almost everyone from the graduating class was there…we were missing three fellas and one gal, who couldn’t make it for one reason or another.

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This is the view from the house where we stayed…gorgeous!!!

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I need to learn how to shoot sunsets…either the landscape is black and the blazing sky is bright and visible, or the grassy landscape is visible and the sky looks washed out…something for me to practice this summer with my trusty Nikon…

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A little ways up the road on the estate is the “Big House” where the estate owner and his family live.  They have a beautiful, rustic house, overlooking a man-made pond (complete with lit fountains and lily pads) and a gorgeous full-sized swimming pool and hot tub.  We were allowed to go up to swim and sunbathe at the pool and spent every day of the weekend up at the “Big House” enjoying the luxurious, rural “resort”.  I think since I haven’t given away who the owner of the property is, I’m allowed to post these pictures of the house and surrounding area…

Here is the view, looking out across the pond and out onto the Piedmont region of my beautiful home state:

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And here you can see the view from the pool…

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In this next shot, you can see a little bit of the house, to the side of the pool area:

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More pool fun:

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(Vaughan loaned Kayla, Stephanie’s Sheltie, her sunglasses while relaxing in the pool)

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Lovely ladies, sportin’ their shades…

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Craig gives us a lesson in relaxation…(he’s got it down to a science).

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John and Ginny brought their dog, Shelly, who had a blast enjoying the pool, river, and pond.  This girl LOVES to swim!

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Chuck and I tend to shy away from the camera (for fear of breaking it, or worse…)  But we allowed a couple pictures to sneak through.

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Vaughan saw me taking photos of some flowers and she led me around to the other side of the house to the “secret garden”…  I’m going to have one of these when I’m a grown up.

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I didn’t get any photos of the pond with the fountains lit up at night because I left my camera at the house when everyone headed up to the pool at midnight, but believe me…it was breathtaking and so romantic.   I did take some shots of the pond and the fountains during the day, though:

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Beyond the pond was a riding ring (but no horses to be seen) and a large, expansive lawn (meticulously cared for…so lush and green!).  Around the pond were benches, which gave such an impression of relaxation and luxury.

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I especially loved all of the lily pads on the pond…

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And below is a view of the house and pool from the other side of the pond…(I wish you could see this photo full-size…the complete view of this place is beautiful and just so perfect…the family who lives here is so truly blessed to be able to live in such a rustic, yet luxurious estate).

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We really enjoyed the beauty of the place, but what made the weekend so enjoyable was the company…  It’s so good to have friends that you can see once in a blue moon and still be comfortable just picking up where you left off.  That’s the test of true friendship, I think.

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This weekend was the perfect start to what I hope will be a wonderful summer…

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(Next week Chuck and I take the pups to the beach for some sand and surf and even more poolside relaxation!)

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