Beach Vacation

August 6, 2009

To celebrate summer in the most traditional way possible, the fam packed up for a week at the beach. We met up with the Bowlings in Sunset Beach, North Carolina for a fun time in the sand and sun. Here are some of our favorite memories.

DSC_3452Mary loves birds. Her goal in life is to catch one.

DSC_3629Over the dunes to the shore

DSC_3636Beach fun

DSC_3654Our family

DSC_3740Daddy’s girl

DSC_3817In Willimington

DSC_3900About to say goodbye


Creeper Trail

March 20, 2009

Yesterday we went to the Creeper Trail in Virginia. We rode 16 miles of what used to be a railroad line on bikes. The big kids rode tag-along bikes, little half-bikes that attached to grown up bikes, and the little kids were pulled along in a trailer. The ride starts at the top of the White Top Mountain in the Appalachian Mountains and goes down the mountain into a nearby town. It took us about three hours with several picture stops in the first half of our journey, and riding as fast as we could with sobbing children through the cold rain during the second half of the journey.

Despite the rain, it was a fantastic day that involved generous dads who took off their socks so that their children could have “mittens”, Mary wearing a shirt for pants, and sore bums for all riders. I would do it all over again. This is what great memories are made of.


Recent Update

March 17, 2009

There is so much to write about…

New House

First, last Thursday and Friday we were able to move into our new house.

It was a week later than we planned, but we got in and are trilled to be there. We are delighted to be in and can’t wait to complete all the initial plans we have for it – the kids’ bathroom has already been tiled (thanks, Clinton) and painting is happening pretty quickly.

Not So Baby Girl

Our sweet newborn, who we just brought home from the hospital, turned four on Saturday. I can’t believe that she is getting so big. Really, if it hadn’t been for the stress of the new house, I probably would have had a much harder time with this birthday. I mean, we don’t have any babies in our family anymore. Now, we have big kids – it’s a new reality.

We had her birthday party at The Ice Cream Shoppe – an old fashioned soda shop in town. It combined two of her favorite things – friends and ice cream. What could be better?


Road Trip

Despite being in the middle of a move, we have had plans to come visit our friends, the Bowlings, for several months now. Sunday night we started our 20 hour drive to east Tennessee and arrived Monday at supper time. It feels like being home. Not only are we with great friends, they have all these fancy luxeries like sheets, towels and furniture. So fancy.

The kids and I will be here for two weeks – a visit that I plan on enjoying every second of. Bristol is beautiful and the kids are having a great time with their friends. It’s nice to have normal for at least a little while.



Animal Kingdom

October 10, 2008

We had a great day at Animal Kingdom. The kids loved seeing all the animals and we had fun on the rides.


October 9, 2008

A fun part about going to Disney World is their desire (or EXTREME lack thereof, in some cases) to meet the friends that they’ve watched in movies. Each of the children with us had an autograph book and couldn’t wait to meet the characters that are present in all four parks. Here’s who we met:

Hollywood Studios

October 7, 2008

I’m back to recapping our trip and today we go to our favorite park – Hollywood Studios. We all had something that we loved at this park. The boys loved the Indiana Jones show and Star Tours (a Star Wars ride), the adults liked Tower of Terror and Rockin’ Roller Coaster, the kids liked the Playhouse Disney show, and we all loved Toy Story Mania, a ride that takes you through interactive carnival-like games. Here are some of my favorite shots:

New York Street

Block Party Bash – the interactive parade

Prime Time Cafe

Jedi Masters

Port Orleans Riverside

October 2, 2008

We stayed at the Port Orleans Riverside on property at Disney World. It was so much fun. Not only was the resort beautiful – styled after a southern plantation – there were fun things to do. We went swimming (we only hit two of the six pools), rented a bicycle surrey, and almost went fishing, but got rained out.

Even better, we got conecting rooms, so that gave everyone a little more space than what just one room would have provided. It was the most beautiful hotel I’ve ever stayed at for that long a period of time. What a nice place to relax between going off to the parks.

Magic Kingdom

October 1, 2008

Our first day at Disney was spent at the Magic Kingdom.

Our favorites: the boy – Space Mountain, the girl – the carousel, Mary – Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, James – the train

Disney Friends

September 29, 2008

My favorite part of the week at Disney World was that we were there with friends. Not only did we get a family vacation, we were able to share it with the Bowlings, our friends who moved to Tennessee last year. Our group of eight included four adults and a 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-year old. It was quite a sight.

This was a trip that we have been planning and looking forward to for over six months. It was so nice to finally see our plans become a reality in ways I could have never planned. Our families complimented each other – at times pushing through the tired, at others encouraging rest. I love travelling with them.

The other fun surprise of the trip was running into the Bentons. Stacey and I knew that our separately-planned trips overlapped, but we kept the secret from our children until we “bumped into” one another at breakfast at our resort. I loved the look on the kids faces when they saw their friends from home in Orlando.

There is nothing like sharing fun with friends. I am so glad we had the chance to be with two different sets of friends while we were at Disney World.


September 28, 2008

Magic. Just a magical moment…

These were her favorite moments of the entire trip.