could this be the end?

The van died again.
Kristie was driving it on Sunday and it just died. She was able to pull it into a driveway where no one lived and then I had to go back and push it into a Target parking lot. There she sits.
The oil pressure light is lit up but the oil level is fine. On Sunday, it started and chugged out for a second. Yesterday it wouldn’t even start. It’s trying,but no luck. Looks like I’m getting it towed today. Hopefully the place I’ve been recommended to is reputible and not expensive. We’ll see.
I did find a nice used Honda Odyssey with low mileage that could be an option. That sure would be nice.

Our 1st family vacation…

we recently got back from our 1st family vacation to watersound, florida and boy did we have a grand ole time! our close friends, the williams, graciously hosted us at their gorgeous beach house in watersound.

as if it isn’t enough traveling with a 2 1/2 year old and an 8 month old we also thought it would be an adventure to drive the 12-14 hours in order to get there. andy and i thought it would be best to start our trip at 4 am so that we would potentially arrive around dinner time. explaining to caleb that just because he was up a 4 am didn’t mean he would have to STAY up was a difficult concept for him to grasp. eventually he fell asleep only to awake as soon as he first saw the sun popping up – “i’m awake, the sun is up” he said. after further thought on the situation he said, “the sun is going to follow us ALL the way to the beach” – and he was right, it did. usually parents dread the usual “are we there yet?” comments however we heard “daddy, what are you doing?” andy would reply, “i’m driving.” caleb would then say, “mommy, what are you doing?” i would say, “i’m just sitting here.” a minute or so would pass and this routine would begin all over. i wish i had gotten paid for every time he said that… i think we could’ve bought our own beach house. 🙂

caleb, a geography nut, had mapped in his mind the way we were to travel from missouri to florida. so it really surprised him when we drove through arkansas and it bothered him that we didn’t go through kentucky (or “mentucky” as he says.) to keep things interesting, andy and i made a united states passport for caleb. this way he could place a sticker on the page with each state he has been to. crossing the border became more than just honking the horn, it became ab about picking the perfect sticker to place on that state we just entered. needless to say, we arrived rather quickly and thankfully soundly!

of course we hit the beach the first full day we were there. this is when caleb discovered “little pool.” it was a tide pool from a neighboring lake that actually dumps out into the ocean. he loved fishing for minnows, hunting for crabs, and just swimming at ease. caleb and emmry both were true salty dogs. caleb loved “smacking the waves” and searching for seashells. emmry loved sitting on my lap to have the waves crash into our legs. she shrieked with joy every time she saw the waves headed her way… too cute!

the trip is loaded with so many details from catching frogs to late night chats with friends. andy and i even had an entire day to ourselves, thanks to grant and em for watching our kiddos. we hung on the beach and got to listen to our ipods and read with NO interruptions, we went for a long bike ride to neighboring communties and ate lunch, we swam in a private pool together, and we even played tennis together, which was by far the high for both of us that day. the night ended quietly in the carriage house where emily had set up our dinner by candlelight and easy listening. too awesome!

by the end of our fun filled week caleb decided that he wanted to learn how to swim without his water wings. this was exciting and rewarding all at the same time. caleb was so proud of himself that he could swim under water that it literally brought so much joy to andy and i in the pool those last 2 days.

eventually our vacation came to an end and we sadly said good by to the beach. our trip home took much longer but we were safe and content with all of the family memories we had made. we took lots of pictures with my early birthday gift, a digital canon rebel xt, and hopefully you can enjoy some of them on this site. Lord willing, andy and i will have many more opportunities to take family vacations in order to pack away family memories for and with our kids!

settling back into missouri life,