Monday, July 13, 2015

In the Meantime...

It's been a few weeks since a post, so I thought I'd show you what has been happening since we last chatted...

We went to Holiday World, otherwise known as Redneck Disney World, with these precious people and had such a fun day. We have been friends with this family since the beginning of time, and all of us parents are really hoping they will just pair off and get married some day. But they are more sibling than not so it's probably a long shot. I really could get on board with arranged marriages.

Anyways, I highly, highly recommend a trip to Redneck Disney World Holiday World if you are close by. Totally reasonable prices (well, for an amusement park) and great rides, plus one of the best water parks! One of the boys said, "No offense, but we need to make this a summer tradition." Uh, none taken. I think. 

So cute! And so are the kids!

Then it rained a lot. 

Like, tons. Or inches. Whatever math term measures rain. 

But rain leads to good gardens, so all is well. That is my Grandma's pressure canner in the background. She gave it to me soon after we married, saying I had so many years of canning ahead of me, and she didn't need it so much anymore. I miss her. I can't even fathom the number of times we sat and snapped beans together. 

Then my family had a Variety Show. This is the second time we have done this, at the behest of the children, and the rule is everyone must participate. They draw up a program and list everyone's talent, and believe me, I use that word extremely loosely. The kids generally have a couple entries, songs and piano playing, and the adults are desperate to think of one thing we can still do. Hope and Eva decided to do this little sketch everyone has seen before and called it "Getting Ready for Church." It involved curlers, eyeshadow and lipstick. It was hilarious. My brother presented a selection of limericks, and then ended with one he wrote:

There is an odd family I know
Who staged a variety show
The attempt was quite valiant
But none had much talent
And the guests were all eager to go.

Then all kinds of crazy went down, and someone who knew I was off Facebook sent me this. I laughed until I cried. And then I cried for other reasons. I definitely have thoughts about all of this, but I have dear, Jesus-loving friends who have different thoughts from mine, so I will leave it with this meme I thought was hilarious, no matter what your deep thoughts.  

Next came the two week vacay. This was our first and most important stop on the road to St. Simon's Island. I can be your good, true friend and disagree with you on lots of stuff, but if you think Dunkin' Donuts are superior to Krispy Kremes it's the end of the line for us. 

The view off the balcony of our room at FCA camp. Not a great pic. But somehow I hardly took any pictures at FCA camp. So this one. 

The girls got to do "campy" things while Preston and I were in chapels and doing "campy" things of our own. Overall a good week, but when we asked the girls if they would like to go back next summer, these were the responses:


Pretty much how every conversation goes. Never ever can something be unanimous. So we shall see. 

We climbed to the top of the historic St. Simon's Lighthouse, (129 steps - middle girl counted hoping to catch them in a mistake) and then one girl had to be dragged out onto the platform having just birthed a fear of heights. She walked all the way around the platform, shaking, and then told us never again. We shall see.

$25 on ice cream. Obviously worth it. 

We saw a fisherman catch a shark off the pier. He was definitely not trying to catch a shark. Luckily there were some people there who knew what to do because this guy had no clue. Preston took his picture holding the shark so he could prove it to his wife, and then he tossed it back. To come along and eat us one day.

After FCA camp we met up a little further south at a beach house with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. We spent a day at Kennedy Space Center, which confirmed everyone's general feeling that none of us ever want to be involved in the travelling to or living in of space. We are wooses. 

We have a couple traditions at the beach, and we added a new one this year: a week-long nerf war. From 9 am - 9 pm you can take one shot per hour. Each person is responsible for keeping up with the number of times he/she has been hit. If you miss, that's still your one shot, and the person with the least number of hits at the end of the week gets a prize. But Aunty Martha is changing the rules for next year because there was a whole lot of "practice shooting" going on. 

Another tradition is a cake decorating contest with a theme decided by the grandparents who then also judge. We draw names for teams. My team has only won once. Which is purely coincidental. The theme for this year was "Something Seen on Vacation." The middle cake was this year's winner, but clearly it should have been the bottom one. 

We also went to an alligator farm, which was Lillian's favorite thing. She says she's going to be a vet when she grows up. She did not get that plan from me. I genuinely dislike animals, especially our own dog right now who weighs about 125 pounds and is so afraid of fireworks she clawed through the screened in porch last night. If you are setting off fireworks here on the 13th of July, what the heck are you celebrating? Is there some holiday I am being left out of? 

We played a ton of games, this being a particular favorite of the intelligent people in the family (a group of which I am left out). It's called "Labyrinth" and with good reason. One child of mine likes to choose this game because she knows she will be done before I have completed the first step. This is a game for mathy-type people. Not that there's math. It's just those of you people who like math would like this dumb game. I, being of the bookish crowd, detest this game. But I play it because:

How could I possibly resist that grin??? 

And of course, the main attraction at a beach vacation is...THE BEACH!

(By the way, I think I saw a woman wearing my bathing suit in Target today...while shopping. That's not clothes! "Modest is hottest!" I'm going to cross stitch that on something for our girls. If their daddy ever lets them out. In our hyper-sexualized culture I am 99% sure he won't.)

And after we shut down the beach on our last night, we headed home with one teensie-weensie stop in mind.

After which...



P.S. As far as our partial media fast, it was delightful. So much so that we cut our data even further. I did put Instagram back on my phone because it feels more like the Christmas card version of Facebook, and I will still be jumping on Facebook occasionally, too, because I do love/hate it. Before we left we got to spend time with several different groups of friends and may I just say that beats the socks off Facebook? Invite someone over (like us, especially if there is a meal involved that I will not be cooking). Get take out or throw hot dogs on the grill. Play Labyrinth. Let the kids run wild. It is so much more fun in person than in pictures. 

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