Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Myrtle Beach

Once upon a time, way back in May, our family went to the beach for a week. 
We swam in the ocean, and didn't see any sharks.
We enjoyed several different pools, hot tubs, lazy rivers, and spray pools at the hotel... because my husband is amazing and finds the best places.
We ate high-calorie, high-fat, high-cholesterol, and high-in-taste beach food all week, and promptly drank protein shakes and ate salads when we returned home.
We had fun. We laughed. We played. We relaxed. 

The end.
But wait. RELAXED. I just said the word "relax" in the context of the beach with four kids. My turn for having a vacation and not just taking a trip has actually happened. Let that sink in.

We had one day of rain and because of all the indoor pools the kids weren't bothered by the storm outside. Grady and I drank coffee and read. (See the above paragraph on relax.)
And, because the only family member who cares about lasting photo memories (yours truly) didn't remember to bring the camera 99% of the time we were at the beach, these few pics will suffice.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Morning at the Gardens

Periodically throughout the year, we enjoy visiting the botanical gardens to explore. Each season has unique colors and smells and displays. Since we're on summer break I suggested we take a morning to walk around and enjoy the gardens before the heat of summer arrives.

It's no secret my kids are strange. (Aren't all kids?) It's no surprise my kids are loud. (Lucky you if yours aren't.) And it goes without saying that my kids operate to the beat of their own drum. (Quite the symphony over here.)

So, obviously a trip to the gardens means a couple of hours scaling walls and creating ninja warrior obstacle courses...
Catching critters - from flower beds, from fountains, from fences, and from other places I'm sure raised an eyebrow or two from garden workers...
Smelling and observing flowers, but only those that were convenient to the merry-go-round or in close proximity to a fountain because why else would we stop to observe BEAUTIFUL colors and shapes and smells (?!)...
Posing with mirrors and comparing exaggerated muscles... 
Splashing in and running through fountains, and then laying out on the walkways to dry off and warm up...  

  Enjoying snow cones to rejuvenate from all the "walking and learning when it was hot outside."
Like I said: we're a strange and loud bunch. But I make no apologies.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Always

They are always dirty.
They are always wet.
 
They are always exploring.
They are always critter catching.
They are always adventuring.
They are always discovering.
They are always learning.
And, seemingly, they are never tired.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Patriots Point

During our recent weekend away to Charleston, we spent a day at Patriots Point. 

It was an incredible visit. Our almost four hour visit was full, but we left with still more to see, watch, and read. While there, we were able to tour the USS Yorktown, the USS Laffey, the USS Clamagore, and the Vietnam Experience Exhibit.

A few points:

- The USS Laffey was our family favorite. An on-board movie and battle simulation made the tour come to life.

- The USS Clamagore was stifling. I can't possibly imagine spending weeks on end in a tight submarine like that. My kids thought it was fascinating; I couldn't wait to find the exit.

- Renting audio headsets for the USS Yorktown was helpful for detailed stories and behind the scenes information.

- Micah happened to be wearing his Patriots football jersey that day and was a walking hero. He was talked to and high-fived by so many people. Grady, wearing his Panthers jersey was entirely ignored!

We took a lot of pics and I'm sharing a big handful of them. No quips or quotes... just enjoy the pics. 
There is a lot about our history I'm not proud of. There is a lot about our government I detest. There is a lot about our current economic, political, and social status that is angering.

But.

I'm thankful for America. I'm thankful God chose me to be an earthly citizen here. I'm thankful for the freedoms I have. And I'm thankful for the MANY men and women who sacrificed everything to fight for those freedoms.

God bless America.