Friday, July 10, 2015

4th Fun 2015

For as long as DW & I have been together (and years before, for him), tradition has always found us on the beach for the 4th of July weekend. DSC_0723As many of the family who can, always pile into my in-laws’ condo for a few days of fun in the sun.

It’s always more fun when the 4th actually falls at the end of the week or on the weekend, because it means a 3 day weekend!

We packed up and headed over to the beach on Friday morning. IMG_5081We arrived in time to try the new Culver’s for lunch. It was a hit for sure, and not just because they promote agriculture and thank farmers. IMG_5566The food was great and it will definitely be added to our fast food at the beach rotation. ;)

We got our suits on as soon as we got there and hit the water. IMG_5125IMG_5102IMG_5155IMG_5146IMG_5128

After an afternoon of beachin’, we went to dinner. Pappy & Nie-Nie volunteered to keep the smallest of the herd at the condo and sent the rest of us off to the dog track. IMG_5089We decided to take the girls with us, because I knew they’d love it.

They must have known the big-money 10-cent betters had pulled up when we piled out of my loaded-to-capacity car, because a nice gentlemen on a jacked-up golf cart came over to take us to the front. IMG_5183

We had a good time picking our dogs based solely on their names and if they’d pooped on their way to the gate. IMG_5199IMG_5213We laughed and cheered and placed our bets, and by the end of the night everyone had won at least one bet except ME. IMG_5195So, I’ve written off the dog track… as in it’s DEAD to me. I’m D-O-N-E. I lost my entire ten dollars and you can bet Mr. Jacked-up-golf-cart man was no where to be found to pick us up on my walk of shame back to the car. However, everyone else did pretty good and they were glad to remind me of it. I’m looking at you, Adam. IMG_5240

IMG_5232We ended the night back at the condo with sleeping kids (& Pappy), laughing our heads off playing a couple rounds of “Things”… which led to our downloading DubSmash. All I can say is, “it wasn’t me.”

Saturday was the 4th and we woke up to fresh, hot, picked up just after the sun rose, Krispy Kremes. Pappy is good to us. Parker woke up with the roosters, too, so Adam & Nen went and got coffee for themselves and sweet teas for me & DW. It was the royal treatment for the Devin Whitehurst family that morning. :)

We hit the beach by mid-morning and settled in for some sunshine and sand. We jumped dump trucks on some sand ramps, made sand castles, consumed mass amounts of sand (Tucker & Parker, not the rest of us), got ice cream from the ice cream truck, grilled out on the beach, and rinsed off in the pool. IMG_5264 IMG_5581IMG_5257

 

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Mamie, who’s spent all summer scared of the beach, finally opened up to it. Something clicked and she jumped waves like a pro and ran back and forth from the tent to the water. Hallelujah. IMG_5459DSCN7230

It was a great 4th! IMG_5422

After dinner at Red Robin, we had a mini dance party in the yogurt shop and a trip to Super Target. We ended the evening with a walk on the beach. Nen snapped these pics of Uncle Adam, Parker & AB and me & the girls…DSC_0673DSC_0694

That night, we watched fireworks down the beach from the balcony. IMG_5540

Nen picked up some light-up toys for the kids and they enjoyed those…

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Sunday was another beach day.

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After lunch, we loaded the kids up and all the girls headed home. The guys stayed behind for the races.

It was a great weekend. It’s always fun making memories. IMG_5571

~amw~

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Cousin Camp 2015

I started the whole “cousin camp” thing three years ago with my Georgia girl cousins as a way to recreate a little of our childhood experiences for our own daughters. I wanted my girls to get to really know my cousins’ daughters. Summers were always fun for us when we were kids and the weeks we spent together were always my favorites. There were five of us girls, and ten years between Becky, the oldest and Stephanie, the youngest. But we all meshed well together. The older ones looked after the younger ones and we were always able to find something to do together, despite our age difference. Along with having my cousins together, another highlight is when we had our mom and aunts together at the same time, which was always a ball. I wanted my girls to get to experience their Grammy & their great aunts together, too. They’re all fun on their own, but put them together and it’s a barrel of monkeys. Ha. They get silly and sing and laugh and talk in funny voices and all have their own unique way of making things memorable and special. I wanted my girls to get to KNOW them and experience all of that, too. To hear them call hogs, or sing hymns, or to hear one yell, “PLATES!” and know that the others would chime in, “FORKS” and whoever was last would be “Ice in the glasses” because that’s how they’d decide who was doing what for dinner that evening, when they were kids. 

My Mom & Aunt Kay have been the best about helping make cousin camp happen. I plan it and then they help me execute the plan. It’s been special times for us for sure.

This year, we extended the invitation to include the other girl cousins. Many of them had other summer plans and couldn’t come, but we did gain four more this year.

We picked and shelled peas and put up creamed corn for our gardening experience. IMG_4259IMG_4269

Some of the girls in our Uncle Jerry’s watermelon “graveyard”

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For our fun days, we hit the beach in St. Augustine. IMG_4446IMG_4452IMG_4470It was a fun day, except for the dogs on the beach. They pooped in the water and one tried to catch Mamie. It was a scene for sure.

My mom rented a couple rooms, so after swimming in the hotel pool, we hit the downtown area. IMG_4507We walked down to the fort while we waited on our table at Harry’s. IMG_4508IMG_4512IMG_4519

We got to sit outside under the twinkle lights with a live band playing in the background. IMG_4571

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Lest, anyone think it sounds like the perfect evening, let me keep it real and say that Tucker had the blowout of his life during dinner. The kind of blowout that left me throwing away his clothes and him wearing nothing but his bib out of restaurant. The ultimate mom-walk-of-shame.

We witnessed a big brawl, altercation, or fight, whatever you want to call it in the lot we were parked at and I had to even make a call to 9-1-1. Lots of stories to be shared and memories made. :)

We made it back to the hotel and settled in for a good nights sleep. The next morning, we checked out and headed back down to the historic district. IMG_4588Mom had done a scavenger hunt down there for a conference she went to in the Spring and we planned to do it with the girls. IMG_4600It was HOT and humid and the big girls had stayed up LATE, so everyone was a little grouchy and didn’t seem too interested in it, so we finished that up fast, got some snacks and headed out. IMG_4623

That evening, DW grilled burgers for dinner and we watched the slideshow of pictures from the week. When it was good and dark, we went outside to send up a few floating lanterns. I only had two and one had a hole in it so we had to tape it up. The lanterns are really thin and if they get holes in them, it’s almost impossible to get them to float. I was sure we’d get the good one up, but was worried about the taped one. When we lit them, the good one filled up fast and started to lift. I gave it a push and it looked like it was going to fly but then just fell to the ground and burned. The girls were so disappointed, they really wanted to see one in person. The other lantern still hadn’t filled up and when I looked at the side, I could see why- there was another bigger hole running all the way down the seam of it. It was really sweet when my mom said something along these lines, “Lord, help us get this thing to fly. Remind us that we’re just like this lantern- broken- but you can use us to be lights for you.” and I promise yall, we got the thing to FLY! It was precious. It was one of the sweetest moments of the entire week. I hope the girls always remember it. We ended the night sitting around the table with rootbeer floats telling memories of my grand (their great-grand) parents.

Coming back from the garden at the beginning of the week, we saw a gopher (which RARELY ever) happens anymore.IMG_4303 My Granny loves gophers. Then at the beach we saw one there, too! It was precious and we all loved that a little bit of Granny was with us. I’m pretty sure she’d be glad her family is still getting together even though she isn’t here to be in the middle of it.

~amw~