Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Spring Break 2013

 The kids did great on the 2-day car ride down to South Carolina.  We were met by Jacob, Rebecca and Don and so happy to see them for the first time in nearly 9 months.   We drove on Friday and Saturday, staying in W Virginia Friday night.   Sunday morning, Rebecca put on an Easter egg hunt in the back yard:

 Later, we went and walked through downtown Charleston--it was cold, windy and rainy when we arrived, but cleared up pretty quickly and we spent a few hours walking around, playing at playgrounds and grabbing snacks at a little coffee shop:

 Later on, we did Easter eggs:
 Then Rebecca made a delicious dinner--what a busy, fun day!

On Monday, we said good-bye to Uncle Don and headed down to Hilton Head--hoping for better weather than the weatherman said we'd have.  It wasn't as easy of a trip as we thought--first stopped at Target in Charleston where it took waaay longer than anticipated to pick up just a few items.  Then as we were heading out of town, Ryan puked in his carseat. Big time.  So, we went back to Rebeccas for hosing off the carseat, cleaning car, cleaning Ryan and trying again.  We did eventually get to the island at 5pmish. It was only a 1.5 hour drive and that's pretty much all we did that day.  I honestly did not even think we'd get there after Ryan puked, so I was thrilled we made it.  We went out for a pizza dinner that left much to be desired, then down to the beach just to see what it was like.

The kids couldn't resist the water and went jumping in the waves, clothes and all--despite the chilly temps, especially at 7pm.  They all got disrobed for the car-ride home since they were so cold in their wet clothes and could not stop talking about their "naked car ride" for the next few days.

Tuesday, we went to the stables.  We were greeted by this beautiful fellow here and the kids loved feeding him apples and carrots that someone left for us.

They immediately wanted to ride the ponies.  Last year, Caitlin wasn't so happy to ride the horse at Easter, so I wasn't sure how she'd do--she loved it. I thought she was brave to re-try.  Nora was all excited until it was time to put on the helmet then she decided she didn't need to ride the pony that badly and was happy to watch.  Ryan loved it.


 Later on, Caitlin and I went for a walk around the subdivision where we stayed:
 Once the little ones were up from nap, we went to Sea Harbor area of the island.  There was a Lighthouse that you could walk up (or be carried up if you were Ryan) for the view.  I'm not a lover of heights so I was up and down in a flash.

 There was also a great playground and the kids ran around for a while there since it was pretty chilly. Then we went to the Salty Dog cafe and tourist trap for some overpriced burgers and dogs and to get eaten by gnats before calling it a night.

 Wednesday morning, we said goodbye to Rebecca and Jacob--we had such fun with them.  It was cold, but we decided to go and play in the sand anyway.  Brought suits just in case, but it was really cold. and windy.  I didn't even take off my long sleeved, thermal shirt and jeans.  Nora, my little fish, wasted little time and wanted to get right in and play in the waves--she did it for at least an hour until I got too cold to supervise.

 Caitlin and Ryan played in the sand until my other fish, Caitlin, got curious. Ryan was having none of it. He got his toes wet and that was it.

Thursday morning, we left Hilton Head at 9:30 and then were in the care for TWELVE FREAKING HOURS for the 9.5 hour trip to DC--it was gray and raining the whole trip. The kids were awesome, again, though despite the terrible trip.  We arrived at 9:45 and were greeting by Auntie Ella and Uncle Colin--the kids had a much-needed long game of hide-and-seek with Uncle Colin before eventually going to bed around 11pm.

Next day, Friday, they were up at 7:30 and ready to explore.  We started out with our first subway trip:

 First to the Smithsonian for a little natural history....

 Caitlin took notes about everything we saw...
 Then we walked around the national mall...
 Carousel rides...
 Kids loving Auntie Ella...

 Saturday was beautiful. We started out at the Air & Space Museum

 Then spend a long while resting on the lawn at the national mall.  John even caught a little nap there. The kids wrote in their journals.

 Then we went back to Elizabeth and Colin's for a fantastic mexican fiesta and watched the Wolverines beat Syracuse.  There was also more hide and seek on Saturday as well with Uncle Colin and his brother Chris.  We left early Sunday and had a great, fast drive back home.   The kids did great on all the long days in the car.  We felt well rested and rejuvenated after getting so many consecutive days of sleep in a row.  Amazing! We are blessed.

We owe big thanks to my Aunt Julie and Uncle Jim for sharing their home on Hilton Head Island with us.  We are also so so thankful to Rebecca, Don, Jacob, Elizabeth and Colin for being such gracious hosts to us and spoiling us during our visits. Love you guys!