Saturday, July 5, 2014

July 4 2014

We had such a good time on the 4th this year.  I got a patriotic taste earlier in the week as I was called for jury duty.  As much as it is a pain and a disruption to life (and it certainly was this time!), sitting in the courtroom and listening to the judge and feeling the weight of my possible responsibility makes me feel very patriotic.  Fortunately, I did not get selected this time (apparently the defense lawyer for a man accused of child abuse doesn't want a mom of four and a daycare provider sitting on the jury; the man was convicted by the way.) One day I wouldn't mind doing my civic duty and sitting on the jury.  Anyway, all that to say, it was a patriotic week and a very patriotic day...I even made some apple pie!  We had some friends come over for the evening.  The kids ran around the yard while the adults and the teens played Kill the Overlord and King of Tokyo.  Somehow Sara ended up winning both games....still trying to figure that out!.  I let Sara have the camera for most of the evening so most of the shots can be contributed to her.
My beautiful friend Amy who is a photographer

trying to catch some fireflies

Vacation 2014

A week after school was out we packed up our van (and by packed, I mean you were lucky if you had a place for your feet) and headed south to the beach.  We have been to New Symrna Beach, FL a lot.  The first time Joe and I went was the summer before we got engaged when we joined his family for their first 19 years ago! It feels a little bit like a second home.  This trip was special in that we stayed for almost 2 weeks which Joe and I have never done.  We've always just been able to do a week. We were also joined by Joe's parents and his oldest sister Alissa.  We basically sat on the beach and did nothing.  It. was. great.  Okay, so maybe we did a few's the highlights:

  • Introduced the kids to Brisco County Jr.  
  • Watched The Incredibles on the way home and felt like accomplished parents since the kids could quote all the great lines (No Capes!)  Watched The Princess Bride as well and quoted right along with it.
  • Searched for sea turtles, but I think we were too early.  The beach where we stay is popular for sea turtles to come out at night and lay their eggs.  In the past we've been fortunate to actually witness this.
  • Spent a day in St. Augustine exploring the oldest city in the U.S. and doing some shopping at one of the best Outlet Malls I've been to.
  • Played Kill the Overlord more times then I can count
  • There was word of a snake on the dunes between our condo and the beach.  If you know me, you know that made my walk to the beach a lot more adventurous then I had planned for it to be.  
  • Nathan discovered hair glue thanks to his wonderful aunt.
  • We hate driving through Tennessee.  This isn't new for us, but I thought worth mentioning.
  • Joe and I both read 3+ books.  I think this broke some kind of vacation record for us.
  • The kids taught me how to use a boogie board
  • We perfected our football catching and throwing by some rousing games of monkey in the middle in the pool.
  • We really can drive straight through without stopping at a hotel.  We were on a little bit of a time crunch when we returned home as we had to be back for a wedding.  So we thought we would give it a try.  We did it.  We couldn't walk very well by the time we got home and our hips were creaking and complaining, but we made it!
  • The kids all saw dolphins for the first time and we enjoyed checking out the manatee as well.

Here are some pics:

the fort at St. Augustine

Father's Day at the Beach

A sand castle builder graciously let the boys help him

This is how I looked and where you could find me most of the week

I love these boys!

View from our condo