Thursday, August 7, 2014

These Are My People

Having six weeks or so of Louisiana under our belts, we thought it was time for a vacation. So, we packed up all the crap that we spent so much time unpacking and set off for the beach with Wendy, Chris, and Vivian. Before we left town, the Frenches stopped by for some beignets and coffee... It was nice to see all these Fairweather babies together! Who would have imagined this 9 years ago?!?

About three hours down the road, we found ourselves a nice little place by the beach with a pool and lots of sea shells to hunt! The girls were in heaven!! So were we...

We left Wendy & Chris in Pensacola yesterday to fly home. It was a great trip and we were sorry to see them go!

The girls and I dried our tears and headed to Gainesville to meet up with my old friend and rugby coach Kerri. While we failed to get a picture, we did have a wonderful time!! After dinner, we drove through the UF campus and continued south to my sister's in St. Pete. I have to say, spending a couple of weeks with family and friends has been refreshing. The move has gone well and we are adjusting, but there's nobody like my people!!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Home Sweet Home

Our stuff finally arrived and we unpacked quickly. Most things made the trip just fine, but Lilly's bed and the crib were both broken in transit. This was disappointing as I only really wanted the kids to have their beds back. Lilly has a bunk bed. So we were able to set up the other bed from the set and she was in business. Nora on the other hand is spending her 33rd night in  a Pak n' Play. This makes me sad. 
On a bright note, Tom should be able to fix the break tomorrow (now that we have garage space and tools unpacked.) So, Nora should be in her own bed tomorrow night! Fingers crossed!!

We have definitely made the best of our time here. We toured a historic plantation, celebrated the Fourth with our old friends the Frenches, went to the beach, visited the French Quarter, and went on a swamp tour. Here are some shots from the festivities!! 

  (photo credit: Garrett Mahaney)
This plantation was known as Oak Alley... now you know why. They said those trees are 300 years old. (photo credit: Garrett Mahaney)
 I toyed with posting this and saying it was a picture of our house! Oh well, I was really taking a picture of the 2+ story tall crape myrtle tree for my mom! Aren't they beautiful?!?

I have to admit, I went into the Plantation tour a little hesitant. I was mostly concerned about the portrayal of the atrocities around slavery. There was an area specifically dedicated to depicting the slave quarters. There was also a memorial with the name of each slave who worked on the property written on the wall. The reality of seeing those 120 names on the wall was moving. The tour was family-oriented and I think they did a reasonable job of respectfully discussing the horrors of slavery while not glamorizing it. As you can tell, the grounds were spectacular. 

Our 4th was a little unconventional... but we had some great food and a great time setting off fireworks!

The beach is a little different here... the water is warm and we had a really nice day playing in the sand and looking for shells in the "surf."

We got a (very hot) quiet morning in the Quarter. It was nice to walk around and showed Judy the sites (Jackson Square and St. Louis Cathedral) before the afternoon crowds hit.

Last weekend we surprised Garrett with a swamp tour. The girls are too little to be safe on a trip like this and we were both very excited to spend an afternoon with our soon to 8th grader! 

Judy and Garrett both left last week. The house is very quiet and we are settling into a bit of a routine. I guess what I have been reminded of most over the last month is that home is where we make it. 

So, Low-eese-yana will be our "Home Sweet Home" for now!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Finish Line

We made it! Actually, we've been here several days. Unfortunately, our finish was less of a triumphant leap and more of a head-long, staggering dive for the ribbon with lots of writhing and complaining at the end.

So, we have been recovering... and adjusting... (mostly to the HEAT!)

When we left Iowa we stopped over for a night at the Great Wolf Lodge in Kansas City. We got to catch up with our old neighbors (and dear friends) the Turcottes. The Lodge was a blast, but WOW! I think I even had some sensory overload!! (Check out Lilly's expression in almost every picture!)

After we left Kansas City we headed for Oklahoma. On the way we found out that our stuff wasn't going to be delivered to our new home on June 30 (as scheduled), but instead on July 10...

I'm just going to let that sink in. July 10.

TWELVE days with no furniture, no kitchen items, no sanity!!

Despite the setback, we made it to my mom's for a quick two nights. We did manage to catch up with my friend Tiffany and her girls and spend the afternoon with the world's greatest octogenarians!! We rode the tractor, ate bar-b-que, and made two trips to the snocone stand.

While we were in Shawnee, we also managed to relieve Nana & Papa of some "extra" pots, pans, pillows, blankets, kitchen items, and SANITY!

We arrived here on June 29 and the only picture I have taken since is of Tom's first day of "school." I even made him stand on the front porch AND he did it!! I told you we were short on sanity...

Part of this is pure, unabashed laziness... Part of it is that it is so hot outside that every time I take my camera out the lens fogs up!

I promise pictures are forthcoming... we have a few outings planned over the weekend and there is that whole national holiday thing coming up. At least it is socially acceptable to eat with plastic forks and knives on the Fourth of July!