Monday, May 10, 2010

Charleston

Click here for the story behind the trip.

Last Thursday morning Annabelle and I pulled out of our driveway a little after 6:00 a.m. Both rubbing our eyes, because we aren't morning people and certainly don't normally greet a new day at 6:00. Annabelle went back to sleep and two hours later, we pulled up at Carrie's to load the car with our 750 lbs. of luggage, strollers, pack and plays and other baby-girl paraphernalia.


We pulled out of Carrie's driveway and headed toward I-95.

We stopped in Hilton Head, SC for lunch. We thought we'd try the Oyster Factory for lunch.
It was right on the water and looked like a great place.
We unloaded the girls and let them stretch their legs, while I ran up to make sure the restaurant was open. To our disappointment, it wasn't.

We drove back down the road to a place we'd seen on the way in. The name of the restaurant was "Roastfish and Cornbread," so Carrie and I thought it would be an okay place. I mean, how could it not be, with "cornbread" in the name?
We were a little caught-off-guard by the hostess, who was wearing hot pants, and high heel sandals. I should probably also mention that she was in her 50's. She took us to our table, but said she only had one high-chair, but she had a booster seat, too. Allie sat in the booster and kept Carrie on the edge of her seat (literally) the entire lunch, worrying she was going to fall off of the booster. After we were seated, we were surprised again, but this time by the decor. The sign out front claimed low-country cooking, but Carrie and I aren't quite sure their decor said the same. I wish so bad I could have taken a picture. The best thing I could think of to describe it is Bohemian? Or maybe Indian? It really looked like they had just bought a restaurant that was previously something else (probably Indian cuisine), hung a couple crabs on the wall (for the low-country feel) and called it done. The whole deal was just odd, to say the least.


We were back on the road and decided to stop in Beaufort.


I had only one thing on my mind, and that was The Chocolate Tree.


Adam & Lauren went to Beaufort last year for their first anniversary and brought us back a box of chocolate covered nuts from there and I have had them on my mind since. The story is that these chocolates were the actual ones that Forest Gump (Tom Hanks) ate in the movie. The box in the movie is a Russell Stover box, but the chocolates inside were from The Chocolate Tree.

I ran in and got us an assortment to taste, along with a box to bring home to DW and one for Adam & Lauren.


See that already bitten-into peanut-shaped thing? Those were called Jimmy Carters. One word. YUM. I had only gotten two of them and after our first bite, Carrie and I decided that we'd better get some more. So we circled the block, saw there was a rear-entrance and this time she ran in to get us an assortment. Carrie returned with some more Jimmy Carters, and some other treats.

We parked the car and put enough quarters in the meter for an hour and headed to stretch our legs. The girls loved playing at the waterside park.
Annabelle smelling the jasmine. Mmmm, the whole place smelled like it. When we got to Charleston, the whole town smelled like it.


After a glass of tea,
we did a little shopping. The girls both got a couple prizes from a children's store. When we got back to the car, we had one minute to spare on the meter!
We were back on the road, Charleston bound!

The girls both fell asleep, so when we arrived in Charleston, we decided to ride down by the plantation homes and romantic gardens to decide which house we wanted to tour the next day.



We rode into the Middleton Place Plantation first, which was hosting an event, but the lady at the gate was nice enough to let us drive through and turn around. The next one we drove through was the Magnolia Plantation.


It had me at the name. We drove through and on our way out, Carrie said, "Look at that!" When I looked up, we saw something in the road headed toward us, but neither of us could figure out what it is. As we got close, we saw it was a small alligator!

Crazy...

We headed downtown to get checked into our room.
We stayed right on King Street at the Fulton Lane Inn and had a beautiful room.
We grabbed the girls' strollers and headed to find some dinner. The concierge had suggested a couple places that she claimed were kid-friendly. When we got to the first one, I ran inside and put our name on the list. My first thought when I went inside was that our concierge and I had to different ideas about what kid-friendly was. I put our name on the list any way and crossed my fingers that the girls would be good. 30 minutes later, we still didn't have a table and we decided to try something else. We stumbled up on a little restaurant on a side street. The best part was that we didn't have to wait to be seated and they actually had two high chairs.

After dinner, when we got back to the room, the girls ran and squealed for the longest time. It was so cute. When Carrie booked the room, since it was a trip for she and Adam, she'd booked the suite with a king size bed, which came with a big jetted tub. I don't know if anyone has ever enjoyed a tub more than these two. The splashing and squealing went on for a good 30 minutes, and neither one of our little shriveled up prunes wanted to get out!

After everyone had been lotioned down and jammied up, some more playing was on the books.
I love this picture. I told Carrie seeing them "doing makeup" is like history repeating itself.


On our Atlanta trip, we learned the hard way how almost impossible it was to get two baby girls to go to sleep at the same time, in the same room. In Atlanta, we had our own beds, but it was still a trial to get some sleep. This time, I packed AB's Pack'n'Play. Her normal bedtime routine is to be laid down around 9:00 and she honestly goes right to sleep. I set the Pack'n'Play up in the bathroom so that we could close the door in hopes that AC and AB wouldn't wake each other up in case the other woke up during the night. I felt bad putting her in there, especially after she was snuggled up under the covers next to her BFF,
but I knew if any of us wanted any sleep, I'd better. She dove right in her Pack'n'Play and we didn't hear from little miss until around midnight, when she woke up scared since she didn't know where she was. I put her in bed with the rest of us, and she went right back to sleep. Both girls did so good! When they woke up next to each other, the squealing began again! They were so excited!!! Sleeping "four-deep" as Carrie called it, in that bed was something. I wish we had a picture of it. Carrie and I were hanging on to each side trying not to fall off our sides, while Priss 1 and Priss 2 were stretch out cross way on the bed! Ha. They were big stuff, for sure. They lived it up on vacation in their king sized bed. Here's AB asleep the second morning, you can see how much room she left for me. Ha.
When "Breakfast in bed" was delivered, we had "Breakfast on the floor." After we'd all gotten ready, we headed for the Magnolia Plantation for a tour! Me & Annabelle on the porch

The mansion was quite impressive, especially considering it was once a hunting lodge, which belonged to the plantation owner, who's previous home had burned down. He made renovations to the lodge, making it into the home it is today. His wife, a city girl, missed city life, so he had beautiful gardens planted for her. He wanted to create, what the tour guide called, "his own Garden of Eden" for his wife, to help her adjust and learn to love plantation life. After a short house tour (we skipped out early, because, what 16 and 18 month old can last for a 30-45 minute guided tour?), we walked around outside admiring all the beautiful trees and flowers,
ponds, and bridgesDown every perfectly manicured pathway we ooohed-and-ahhhed!
There is so much beauty in the outdoors... God's pure creation. I just love it. I'm not one for getting too hot, but the sweat beads dripping down my nose from the heat were so worth the small glimpse of God's splendor.
After our plantation tour, we stopped at a Chick-fil-A for lunch, because we hadn't really had much luck on the food front so far into our trip, so we decided to go with old faithful. After lunch, we did a little shopping and some junkin'.....on one of our junkin' stops, Carrie scored a baby doll cradle for Allie Claire, that is so precious... It's stained such a pretty color and is going to make such a cute bed for Allie's baby dolls. The best part was she got it for like $10.00!!! I got a few things, too, and am hoping with a little paint, I can make some treasure out of it! Ha....

On our way back downtown, we stopped by Cupcake, to get what else, but a cupcake!

After we'd changed for dinner, we headed to do a little more shopping at a cute little shop that had all things personalized and monogrammed. We got the girls the cutest monogrammed sun hats and Carrie ordered a couple other things, too. Since they had to be monogrammed, they're shipping them to us, so it's going to be like Christmas this week when they arrive!!!

We had dinner at Hyman's Seafood. Carrie had seen it in Southern Living before and a couple other people had recommended it to her. We were glad we did, because the service was amazing, and it was a fun little stop. We ate upstairs by a window, and Annabelle loved waving to all the passing cars. Lots of famous people have been to Hymans, and on the table where they sat, there's a nameplate telling who had eaten there. I had to show who had eaten at AB's spot...

Yes, Vanilla Ice. Hilarious. I know Stephanie & AB's Uncle Beau will be jealous.
Hootie (Darius Rucker) had sat in my spot, and Sandra Bullock had sat in Carrie's. I can't remember who Allie's was??? Before dinner, they brought us boiled peanuts, which we had to request a second bowl, because we have a peanut-eating piggy on our hands... AB was loving those boiled peanuts! I know my Papa and DW's Granddaddy would be so proud!

Since we were seated upstairs, we had to exit using the stairs that lead down to the gift shop. As we were going down the stairs, my right sandal broke, causing me to skip a few stairs, and almost fall. When I caught myself, Annabelle was screaming because I was carrying her and it scared her big time. My shoe was flopping everywhere and the bottom of my foot was throbbing and bleeding from being scraped on the rough surface that the stairs were covered in. How embaressing. I was mortified, and asked the cashier if they had any tape or string or anything I could tie my shoe up with...they returned with scotch tape and some string. I wrapped my shoe to my foot and around my ankle and tied it on.

I was pretty embaressed walking around with my shoe tied on, but what else could we do? AB and I went outside to wait on Carrie & Allie, who were shopping a little and tracking down their stroller.

After dinner, we were headed to do our "romantic" carriage ride, that was part of the package that Carrie had booked. The girls were loving seeing all the horses and carriages around town, and we knew they were going to love it. On our way there, we passed a shoe store, so I ran in and bought a new pair of flip flops....
When we finally reached the back forty, where the carriage company was located, they told us that the horses were done for the day and that we could come back another time to cash in our voucher for the carriage ride. Dang. We may have not gotten our carriage ride this trip, but at least we got to ride on a rickshaw later that night...a first, for all four of us.
It was still early, so we decided to just walk down by the water. We ooohed-and-ahhhed over every house we passed and we took pictures of the really awesome ones while trying to look like we weren't, in case the owners were in their yards. Ha.

We finally made it down to the battery and let the girls get out of their strollers to run in the grassy park that's right in front of the water. There were squirrels running around everywhere, and Annabelle had a fit over them. She chased them,
and chased them, and chased them.

We laughed so hard....

She and Allie saw this big stack of "balls" that they needed to check out... but they didn't even stop long enough to take a good picture before they were running around again, chasing squirrels, dogs and each other.
Saturday morning, we woke up to head home. On our way out, we spotted the Hot sign, and neither of us has enough willpower to resist the hot sign.


We ended up stopping in Tybee Island for lunch, at the Crab Shack.






After lunch, we were ready to make the final trek of our journey and we were so glad to see that Florida welcome sign!
There's no place like home.

It's always an adventure, when Carrie and I strike out, and the past year and a half, adding two little girls to the mix has made it even MORE of an adventure! I know the trip wasn't what Carrie had in mind when she planned it, but I think it's safe to say, "a good time was had by all." Thanks for letting us be your back-ups Carrie & Allie Claire!

~annie~

10 comments:

Lyndsay said...

It looks like a great time! There are really some cute pics of AB in there. I love that you tied up your sandal with string, funny thing is mine did the same thing today!!

Julianne Hendrickson said...

that looked like a weekend to remember!! i have had the same thing happen to my shoe--it is totally embarassing and there isn't much you can do! I am just so glad you didn't fall or drop AB! Those gators are scary...yikes--loved all the confederate jasmine..I want some in my backyard!

Carrie said...

Thank you for going with us! We had such a good time with you girls. I love that picture of AB walking through the battery like big stuff swinging her arms. She's so cute.

I love that neither one of us in our re-caps told the w-h-o-l-e story. Ha!

Stephanie Heintz said...

That was a fun post to read. You two friends make me envious! Can't wait to make some memories with you soon too! Glad you guys had fun and Allie calling Belle "bill", is just down right hilarious! :)

P.S. I love you.

Katie said...

Before i can comment on anything....your shoe....hahahahahahaa! That is hysterical! Too funny. I am so sorry to laugh. Y'all's trip looked like so much fun. I'm so sorry you didn't get to eat at the Old Oyster Factory. It's one of our fave restaurants...they have oysters Savannah...sooo good!

Heather said...

Are you kidding me?!?? What a great time and what fun memories for the girls to look back on one day!! You have got me wanting to go to Charleston right now!! Beautiful!! I have broken my flip flop before with nothing to do or fix it, such a pain!! So glad you girls had a great trip, I am so jealous!! Can I come with y'all!!??

Seizing My Day said...

Oh my gosh... I don't even know what to comment on!! he he!! SO much FUN!! I love taking adventures with my wee little family like that!! Now I want to come to the East Coast!! =) I haven't seen the East Coast in a long long time!! Such beautiful memories you made!!

Charon Benton said...

Looks like some serious FUN!!! Love that pic of AB in the park swinging her arms!

Whitney said...

I bet no one even noticed your shoe! :) What a fun trip! What beautiful scenery! Next time, I want to go along! ;)

Tania said...

Looks like a fun time. I know you enjoyed your trip with Carrie and the "little ladies". Such cute pictures.