Chris and Caitlin waiting to see Santa!

Chris and Caitlin waiting to see Santa! (November 17, 2012)

Also, it's that time of year to start thinking about Halloween costumes.  If you want to save some cash this year on your child's costume, National Costume Swap Day is next Saturday, October 8th.  If you have a gently-worn child costume that you would like to swap, bring it by the LFA Consignment sale at the CMT Building on Brandon Avenue in Roanoke next week.  You will get a ticket for the swap on Saturday. What a fun and practical idea!

Thursday, September 22
What a gray week it's been...but also perfect weather for those of us who get up at 3:00 in the morning, and like to catch a quick nap in the afternoons! 
It's been a busy week on News 7 Mornin. Today we previewed the Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival, which is happening this Saturday and Sunday at Lakewatch Plantation.  27 different wineries will be there, along with craft and food vendors, and live bands.  And Leo says the sun is supposed to be shining on Saturday...Fingers crossed!
If you're more into finding that perfect pumpkin, Sinkland Farms in Christiansburg is starting its annual Pumpkin Festival this weekend. It'll run every weekend until October 30th. And start checking the newspaper for all of the fall festivals. Such a fun time of the year!
I am excited about my son, Christopher starting karate lessons soon!  He's shown an interest in it for a while, but I wasn't sure if he knew exactly what karate involved.  We observed a couple of different classes over the past week, and settled on one that I think will fit him best.  He's already learned a couple of great self-defense moves (so have I). But what I really like about it is the emphasis on respect and discipline.  I think it'll be really good for him.  Feel free to drop me an email if your child has been involved in martial arts.  I'd love to hear about their experience!
Friday, September 16
Another weekend is upon us, and it's going to be a good one for soup and hot chocolate!! I actually had to break out the winter jacket this morning as I was leaving for work at around 3:15 a.m.  But I think I am ready for fall, and the cooler temperatures, changing leaves, etc.  Once the school year starts, I am pretty much over the hot weather.  Of course, I will be yearning for those 90- plus days once January rolls around!
There are always so many festivals happening from now, right on through October.  It's not quite pumpkin patch time, but close.  This weekend, be sure to check out Roanoke's Greek Festival, which starts today and runs through Sunday.  Bob Grebe brought back some yummy food after his morning live shot from there yesterday... Baklava is awesome!!!!
Whatever you decide to do, make it a great weekend! I will be checking out the latest chick flick, "I Don't Know How She Does It," starring Sarah Jessica Parker.  It's about a working mom trying to balance it all...I can totally relate.
Friday, September 9
I am extra sleepy today, but it's for a very worthy cause!  Last night, I had the honor of emceeing the 3rd annual Hopes and Dreams gala at the Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center. The event raises money for HopeTree Family Services and Special Olympics Virginia.  I was touched by hearing so many wonderful stories from the people who are helped by the many services HopeTree offers...everything from foster care to residential programs for all ages. The agency does so much for the Roanoke Valley community, and beyond.  I also had the honor of meeting the keynote speaker, Jennifer O'Neill.  You will probably remember her from her many TV and film roles over the last few decades. She also served as a Cover Girl spokesmodel for 30 years. She gave a very personal, honest and inspirational speech about her life, and I really enjoyed getting to spend the evening with her and everyone else at the event.
Of course, this Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.  Roanoke will host a Remembrance Ceremony on the City Market from 4:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Congressman Bob Goodlatte will serve as the keynote speaker.  Let us all pause that day, and remember the thousands of lives lost, and the MILLIONS of others that changed forever.
Monday, August 29
Labor Day weekend is coming up, and you know what that means...summer is nearly over.  I have mixed feelings about that.  I always love fall, with the back to school excitement and the changing colors of the leaves...however, I do enjoy those fun summer afternoons at the pool and of course, vacation!!  I took a couple of days off last week to get my son, Christopher started in first grade.  He just started riding the school bus this year...and yes, I took plenty of photos that first morning he stepped onto that big, yellow bus!!  He seemed to grow a couple of inches over summer (I wasn't the only one to notice that).  He's growing up...but still a little boy in so many ways, thank goodness! 
My thoughts and prayers are still with our friends on the coast who dealt with Hurricane Irene over the weekend. Many people in Virginia are still without power, and homes are damaged.  Our part of the state was very lucky by comparison. Let's hope this week is calmer after the hurricane AND earthquake last week!
Tuesday, August 16
Gooooooooooooooood Morning!  I had to borrow that line from the legendary radio disc jockey, Adrian Cronauer.  He is the Vietnam War era jockey that Robin Williams played in the 1987 movie, "Good Morning, Vietnam."   Cronauer himself stopped by our studios this morning, and did a few live segments on News 7 Mornin' with me. It was quite an honor to meet him!   I informed him that I still have his broadcasting instructional textbook, "How to Read Copy" that I had to read back in college. Hopefully, I was able to learn (and utilize) his great tips!  If you missed the interview segments this morning, you can check it out on our Web site.  Just head to our Home page and you will find it there. And yes, he performed his well-known catchphrase, "Goooooood morning, Vietnam" on live television! He still has some powerful lungs...