Wednesday, April 23, 2014

South Carolina - Round Two

After our awesome visit with my brother and his family, it was time to head to Columbia, SC to see Jason's family.  It was wedding time!  We didn't have much time for play on this leg of the trip, but the kids did get to spend a good amount of time with their cousin. 

We mainly just spent what little down time we had visiting with Jason's two brothers and other family members who we don't get to see too often.  It's always nice to catch up! 

The day before the wedding, the kids and I got to go to a Bridal Brunch while all the guys golfed.  I had never heard of a Bridal Brunch/Lunch before, but who am I to pass up free mimosas!?  It was great food and it was nice to meet some of my new sister-in-laws friends and family.

That night was the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.  The rehearsal didn't go too great....Redmond, who was so excited to be a ring bearer, suddenly realized just what that meant - being surrounded by people he didn't know, walking passed a bunch of people he didn't know and being told what to do by people he didn't know.  Poor guy was so distressed.  He finally calmed down and we were able to wrap up the rehearsal and head to dinner.  It was delicious!

The day of the wedding was pretty low-key (well, for us at least!).  We just spent the morning lounging around.  Once it was show time, we headed to the church.  They decided that Redmond would walk down the aisle with Jason and then come to me.  That plan worked great!  I don't think I'd ever seen Redmond run as fast as he did once his ring bearer duties were over!  He bolted down the aisle to me!  
Can't. Handle. The. Cuteness.
The real fun of the weekend happened at the reception.  Redmond had been talking about dancing on the dance floor for months!  The kid did not disappoint.  He basically spent the entire time on the dance floor.  Both him and Ashlyn were really bustin' a move!



The next morning was Easter and the Easter Bunny came to visit us in our hotel room!  The kids were soooo excited when they woke up.  The Easter Bunny even left eggs hidden in Grandma and Grandpa's hotel room so the kids and their cousin had a great time hunting for eggs. 

 After the egg hunt, we had breakfast, said our goodbyes and made the trek home.  We traveled through 7 states in less than 12 hours!  After being gone for two weeks we were so glad to be home.  Back to reality and, most importantly, back to Oliver!
Now, we get a two week break before we travel to California for wedding number two!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

South Carolina - Round One

After we left Virginia we were headed for Conway, SC to visit with my brother, sister-in-law and niece.  We decided to break up the trip and stayed in a hotel in NC with a pool.  The kids LOVED swimming in the pool.  It was a nice little break and time to regroup a little.
We got to my brother's on Sunday at lunch (we actually would have been there quite a bit earlier, but *someone* left their wallet in our hotel and didn't realize it until we were two hours into our trip....I'm not naming names, but it wasn't me! :).  After we ate lunch and the kids took a short nap we decided to check out their local zoo.  Jason had had enough traveling so he decided to stay in and watch The Masters. 
The zoo was small which was perfect - the kids loved it.  We were able to feed a lot of the animals too.  Redmond loves feeding animals.  His uncle and aunt were happy to help him :)
It was nice having my niece around to help with the grunt work every once in awhile!
The next day was Jason's birthday!  We went to a restaurant recommended by my brother.  O.M.G. it was like I died and went to carb-a-holic heaven (which, really, would be my dream!).  There was a huge salad/pasta bar and then there were about 10 different dishes that waiters brought around that you could have.  They'd give you a small portion and move on.  It was ah-mazing!  My ideal meal consists of lots of options.  The kids absolutely loved it.  I loved it.  It felt more like my birthday!
Jason requested a birthday cookie.  The kids and my niece made a trip in the morning to the store to get him just that.  Although we barely had room after all that pasta!
The next couple of days it rained, but we were able to sneak off to a park right by my brother's house for a little play time one morning.
The complex my niece plays softball at is amazing.  One night while she had practice my brother, Jason and the kids played at one of the playgrounds and then my brother took Redmond fishing at a pond there.  My sister-in-law and I decided to skip out to have a few drinks :)
For our last big Hurrah in Conway/Myrtle Beach, we went to Ripley's Aquarium.  Between spring breakers and everyone looking for an escape from the rain, it was packed!  But, it was a lot of fun.  The kids had a blast.
The best part of the aquarium is this conveyor belt that takes you through an enclosed tunnel where fish, sharks, turtles, etc. swim over and next to you.  The kids were so enthralled with it!
I think Ashlyn could have just stared at the fish all day long!
The kids found a great place to explore and climb. 
So, we had a great visit with my brother and his family.  I didn't want to leave!  We did so many things, but also had a good time laughing and relaxing too.  Redmond's absolute favorite thing about our trip to his aunt and uncle's house?  The doggy door of course!  Once he figured out he could go in and out through the dog door - that was the only way he would go in and out of the house!
Silly kid!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Virginia is for.....sunshine!

First stop.....Fredericksburg, VA!  This was the most uneventful part of our trip(s).  My nieces and nephew were in school all week and my sister had to work most of the time we were there.  So, it was just the kids and I for most of the day, without a car (Jason dropped us off and then went to MD to work for the week).  But, we did enjoy the warm weather and sunshine everyday - something we hadn't seen in MI in far too long!  The kids were SO happy to finally be able to play outside!
Probably the most exciting part of this trip was Ashlyn getting her first pedicure (quite sloppy, I admit!) and pigtails!  Hooray for piggies and ponies!
Seriously, how cute is she!?!?!?!?!

One morning, my sister had the day off so we headed to a park.  The kids were sooooo happy to be back at a park.  It had been way too long!


Ashlyn also got some soccer lessons from her big cousin.  I think she's a natural!

Our trip to Virginia was quite uneventful, but we had lots of sunshine and fun!  The kids loved seeing and playing with their big cousins. 
Up next: the Carolinas!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Have weddings, will travel!

We have had an eventful few weeks!  Both of Jason's brothers got married......within three weeks of each other.....on opposite sides of the country....and Jason and Redmond were in both weddings.  Phew!  The other day while eating breakfast, Redmond asked how many states we have traveled to lately.  I was shocked when I realized we had stayed in or traveled through 11.  Eleven!  Eleven states in 5 weeks!

The first wedding was in South Carolina.  We decided to make this a two week trip so that we could spend time with my sister in Virginia and my brother in South Carolina before the wedding.  It was a looooong trip, but we had great visits with family and the wedding was beautiful.  And I'm pretty sure I've never seen a cuter Ring Bearer :)

Once we finally got back home, we had less than three weeks before we had to get on a plane and head to California for wedding #2!  

We were only in California for two full days.  The kids did amazing on the trip.  They traveled well and adjusted to the time change (both there and back) better than we had hoped.  The wedding had a gorgeous venue.  And again, the Ring Bearer was soooo handsome!  The best man wasn't bad looking either ;)

So now we're back home (yay!) and have no plans of traveling anytime soon (double yay!).  So glad to be home and back to "normal" (HA!).

As I have time (ha ha!) I'll post about each trip.  Until then!