Wednesday, June 27, 2012

All 8 of Us

The Farrells and the Stinnetts reunited this past weekend, but the Farrells were plus one since our last gathering.  Sarah, Dan and Dylan welcomed Eleanor in late November of last year and she has finally reached the age where traveling and staying over night isn't too chaotic and exhausting.  Not to say she didn't wake up mom and dad in the wee hours of the morning both nights they were here - she wasn't gonna make it that easy.

We did exactly what young families should do in the summer...

Friday night - welcome with big hugs, let kids go nuts, put kids to bed, have adult time on the porch
Saturday - pool, cookout, put kids to bed, have adult time on the porch
Sunday - beach, lunch, say goodbye

There is nothing more special and comforting than old friends, which is why I treasure every picture we take - and we always get some good ones.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Dada's Day

The term "Daddy" has not yet caught on in our household and I'm not sure if it ever will.  Evan has called Robert "Dada" since he was first able to utter words and it has stuck.  I'm assuming once Evan starts school his name choice might change, but until then it's "Dada" around this house.

So, yesterday we celebrated Dada's Day!

After showering Robert with cards, homemade gifts and a fishing trip for just the boys, we gathered everything we needed to spend the day at the water park.  The weather was beautiful and the kids were were we.  This was Mattie's second trip to the park, but her first time truly getting an experience.  And it definitely was a positive one.

Robert said something to me yesterday that really struck a chord - he said, "When Father's Day is equally as important as Mother's Day, I know that we have a great marriage."  While this may not be true for everybody, in our case it all comes down to  running our household 50/50.  I'm certainly not that mother stuck feeding and bathing the children and changing diapers around the clock.  Robert is extremely hands-on and contributes in all areas, not just being the fun, playful dad who likes to wrestle and throw the kids around.  He is more than just a dad to our family - he is a DADA - and that is way cooler than dad any day.

My children are blessed to have such a loving, caring man who would literally do anything to make them smile.  Watching Robert fall into the daddy role has made me love and respect him even more than I already did.  Every year reconfirms that I found "the one."

Happy Dada's Day, Babe.  You are amazing.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Belated Anniversary to Us

Even though our official anniversary date was June 9th, we were busy celebrating a more seasoned anniversary in Knoxville (Happy 25th to Rob & Sharon).  But we certainly weren't gonna let our 5th anniversary go by completely uncelebrated - who passes up an opportunity to have a night out with just your spouse?

After receiving several recommendations, we decided to drive up to North Myrtle to try out Joe's Bar & Grill.  We sat at a cozy table for two on the covered deck overlooking the waterway.  The atmosphere was relaxed and casual, yet had the perfect fine dining touch to make the occasion feel special.  We started off with crab stuffed mushrooms served with a corn/black bean salsa.  The flavors were amazing.  I then completely devoured a small filet and twin lobster tails while Robert polished off a perfectly cooked filet with roasted potatoes.  I am disappointed that we didn't have room in our stuffed bellies for dessert, but I'm sure whatever they serve is wonderful.  We enjoyed the experience so much we decided this might just be our future anniversary spot.

We had originally planned to see a movie after dinner, but the phenomenal meal paired with delicious wines steered us in another direction.  We decided to head back to Murrells Inlet to stroll along the Marsh Walk.  There was a live band playing and an outdoor bar open for business.  We moseyed up and down the pier enjoying an adult beverage and the music - and of course each other.  It sure has been a lovely five years so far...looking forward to many, many more.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Roadtrip to Knoxville

Not many marriages make it to 25 years these days, but Robert's sister and brother-in-law are one of the few that have beat the odds.  And to celebrate this milestone anniversary, they threw a big bash with friends and family to share in their happiness.  We were more than thrilled to make the trip west to Tennessee to be a part of such a special day.

(The day was also special because Robert and I were celebrating our fifth anniversary, which seemed so inferior to 25! Ha!  We are gonna take the time this weekend to celebrate together - five years of marriage, 11 years of happiness.)

We had to squeeze in a lot of visiting in the four days we were there.  We spent the first day with Grandma and Grandpa Bopp and Granny.  Kaylin, our niece, also spent the day with us.  She was so wonderful with Evan and Mattie - sure wish she lived closer so she could do a little babysitting :)  Granny was talking up a storm when we got there.  At 97 years old and bed ridden for the last two years, I was blown away by how much she was talking.  It was the most verbal I've seen her in at least two years.  Even though much of her conversation seemed confused, it was amazing hearing her verbalize her thoughts.  We asked her if she wanted to get out the bed and she responded, "Let's get out of here!"

I remembered to take a few pictures of everyone - some of them are a bit grainy because I realized my settings were off AFTER I took most of the pictures - of course.

We met up with my dad for lunch since he only lives a hour from Knoxville.  He surprised the kids with a stuffed animal and Mattie has been attached ever since.  Her pink bunny, whom she refers to as "Hop," is dragged around the house where ever she goes now.

We had plans to spend the day boating with Robert's dad and Kathy, but the weather decided to keep us indoors with rain that didn't seem to want to go away.  We spent the time at their house instead and I think Evan was just fine with that.  Any time we go over there, he feels like it's Christmas because they have the mother load of toys stashed away in their closets.  The rain did finally subside, however, and we took the kids outside to play in the yard.

As for the anniversary party, I have no pictures.  But Sharon and Rob had a professional doing that work, so I'm hoping we'll get a chance to see some of those soon.  The kids had an absolute ball at the party.  They danced and danced until they literally could dance no more.  Robert and I laughed when we clocked ourselves leaving at 9:15 pm.  That was by far the earliest we've EVER left a party.  Welcome to the world of parenthood!  We had a blast nonetheless.

We had a wonderful time visiting everyone.  And as always, we look forward to going back to visit again soon.