After reading the diary of Blackie's visit with her friends
in Grand Island, FL please scroll on down and view the


Tuesday, August 11, 1998

Blackie and Scoop arrived yesterday and spent a quiet night at the post office resting up from their trip. Everyone there was very nice and they left a light on so we wouldn't get scared.

We spent a quiet day watching Miss Sue do word processing on the computer. Blackie really liked the Winnie-the-Pooh decals on the monitor and the calendar. We had a birthday party with ice cream cake. Blackie and Scoop led everyone in singing "Happy Birthday''.

After work we watched Quinette, Dottie and Kay do tote painting and tried a bit too. From there, we went to Fire Station 51 for a tour and a ride on a fire truck. Lee and Jimmy were sooooo nice. Both Blackie and Scoop got to drive and help aim the fire hose!

When we got home, we all went in the pool. Blackie and Scoop played water polo too. Supper was hot dog roll-ups - yummy - nothing left but the crumbs then of to bed.

Wednesday, August 12, 1998 (Mt. Dora)

Today Blackie and Scoop got a new friend - Tuffy. They went to G.A.'s a group for girls at First Baptist Church in Mount Dora. We learned about missionaries on the beach. We leaned that they paint faces and tell  people about Jesus while they paint. For our activity we painted each others faces. Hope you and Blackie, Scoop and Tuffy have a wonderful time.

Amanda Marchese

Thursday, August13,1998

We plan to go to bed early tonight. After Amanda went to sleep, Blackie, Scoop and Tuffy stayed up almost all night talking with their cousins.

We met some real nice people in Miss Sue's office called Growth Management. That's where people come to get permits before they build houses. We saw Mary again and she told us she was glad she got to celebrate her birthday with us. Miss Sue gave us a sticker and Dale gave us a bright orange yo yo.

Fnday, August14,1998

More new friends - Lake County D.A.R.E. Deputies Christy Chapin and Linda Allen. They told us all about the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) Program. Deputy Christy had big a surprise for Blackie - another traveling companion - Pounce. Pounce was so happy to hear why Blackie was traveling the country she started to cry. Tuffy gently licked her tears and reminded her shat an honor it was to be chosen to travel with Blackie. All four (4) beanies stood proudly at attention and promised to "Just Say NO To Drugs" then Sgt. Nick Pallito made them Junior Deputies in the Lake County Sheriff's Department.

We made another new friend who was concerned about our safety while we travel. Noble Olisambo gave us reflector tags to put on our clothes or book bags. He also gave us a frisbee.

Exciting news late in the day. Our hostess found out she got a big promotion at work. We stopped and got pizza to celebrate. We couldn't decide on one kind, so we got one pepperoni and one italian sausage. Everyone got to choose what they wanted.

Oops, almost forgot. We went to the Blood Bank to say hi and thank you to the donors. Blood and platelet donors are very special people. One of the ladies we met works at a day care center and was really happy to see us.

Saturday, August 15, 1998

Yahoo! We got to sleep in since Miss Sue didn't have to go to work today. Our hostess has three (3) cats - Marmalade, Galoshes and Snowcone. They have been very nice telling us stories and sharing their toys. Miss Sue had to go shopping for new clothes for her new job. She left Marmalade in charge. Pounce thought it was great that a cat got to be in charge.

While Miss Sue was out, we got to watch video's. We watched E.T., Roger Rabbit, Toy Story and everyone's favorite Pooh's Grand Adventure. Miss Sue likes Pooh and his friends almost as much as we do.

When Miss Sue got back home, we had show and tell, then we went for a swim in the pool.

Sunday, August16,1998

A very quiet day. We were supposed to go to Silver Springs today but Miss Sue decided she needed to stay home and prepare for her new job. Snowcone volunteered to drive but Marmalade and Galoshes reminded her she was way too young and didn't have a drivers license. It probably was a good thing we didn't go. The heat index was 108 F, there was lots of thunder and lightening plus we need to pack.

Monday, August17,1998

We got all packed last night. Miss Sue put our names on out things so we would know who's was who's. We decided to send most of our things home because our suitcase was too heavy. Scoop volunteered to take the suitcase home. He had never been away from home before and is feeling homesick. With Tuffy and Pounce along, Blackie would still have someone to travel with.

We all cried and promised to write. Scoop said he might rejoin us at a later time.

Miss Sue gave us a map and showed us where we are and where we are going. See you later alligator!

As dictated by Blackie and his friends to Susan Strum, Grand Island, Fl.

Now take your time and look at some  pictures of the visit with friends and especially

ready for water basket ball

floating for a little R&R

resting after a swim

suppertime (yum yum)

Blanca and friends at Blood Bank

Tony and friends at Blood Bank

Amanda and friends at school

Amanda and friends at home

Fire engine


Dare Deputy Cindy

Cindy & Linda
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