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Road Trip, Day 2

We started our second day out by helping drop our friends’ kids at summer camp. It was fun to see where they go to school!


Audrey & their daughter had a wonderful time together! So much so, that at 11:00 p.m. I went upstairs to check on them & they were still going strong on their “slumber” party!!! Although, not much slumbering was happening!



Ezra had a great time playing Wii with their son!!



Then it was on to Princeton!!!



Not sure if this is considered bad form, but the kids had a great time climbing on the lion!



He looks like he is considering the future & great things to come, but I think he was just wondering how much longer the adults were going to keep looking at this place!!!



Trying on a Princeton tiger tail!



Group shot!!! So fun to see our friends again after two years!

Next up we had to find wifi so I could sign up to volunteer for my Dad’s Hood to Coast team! We conveniently found a Dunkin Donuts! Somehow it seemed a little ironic that I was eating a donut while signing up to help with a race, but they had wifi!!! (And donuts!)

We had considered trying to get the kids into New York City, but we were short on time & everything you want to do down there (even parking) costs SO much! So, we opted for a stop at the Flag Plaza in Jersey City!


The view was really quite good! The kids got to see the Statue of Liberty!



We also got to see the skyline of the City!



A view of the Brooklyn Bridge, which Micah read a book about this past year!!



H&M shot!


From there we spent the remainder of the time driving to our friends’ house just outside of Newport, RI! It was fun to add some more new states to our list, but even more fun to see our friends again & enjoy a pizza dinner with them!

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Road Trip, Day 1

We planned a short little road trip to add some states to all of our ‘lists’ & see some good friends!


Rockin’ Dad’s glasses & hats!



Cool Dude!!



On our way into Pennsylvania!



Lunch at John’s Roast Pork! The kids had hotdogs & hamburgers, but the adults had…






Four dinosaurs outside of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in Philadelphia

(Just have to brag about our Gilbert House Museum Pass again, because we got into this museum for free with our pass!!!)



The dioramas were incredible!!



Hello, tortoise!



Pretending to be an eagle






My little scientist drawing pictures of each dinosaur from the skeletons



Conversing with the T. Rex

(Ezra has been wanting to go to the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, because of the T-Rex there. The bones had been discovered by a man named Barnum Brown & was called Barnum’s T-Rex. We had read a book about Barnum Brown, which led to Ezra’s fascination with that particular skeleton. However, this T-Rex was also technically Barnum’s as it was made from the same casts as the one in the NY museum!!!)



A dream come true for Ezra!!!



They had a green screen you could stand in front of & then watch yourself interact with dinosaurs. My kids were mesmerized! 


From Philadelphia, we drove to our friends’ house in New Jersey. We had a great evening visiting & catching up on life!

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A new experience!

Ezra has always loved movies (as does Audrey), but he has always been sensitive to sound and even will ask us to turn down a movie that we are watching at home. For this reason, we just haven’t tried taking him to see a movie in a movie theater. A couple years ago, we tried taking him to a whale IMAX one time, but he walked out after the first minute. This summer we decided to try again! I found a sensory-friendly film, which I hoped might make his first experience in the theater much easier! Plus, he really, REALLY wanted to see…


It was a success! Ezra LOVED it! I didn’t even feel that it was that much quieter than usual. They might not have had the bass on that makes the movie rumble in your chest, but I didn’t feel like I was at a vastly different showing.


A horrible picture, but the only one I have of my kids at their first movie!

A few days later on family vacation, the weather was calling for rain all day, so we decided to try a regular theater. The movie showing was once again one of a series that Ezra enjoys…


Micah was sitting next to Ezra & said he seemed a tiny bit tense at the very beginning, but he ended up settling in & doing fine!


Fun times at the movies!

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Gilgal House, part 3


Since we’re only together every so often we decided to snap a picture of our whole group! Getting everyone looking the same direction & smiling is a very hard feat! I’d call this a win!



The kids with Nene & Da!



Our family (Ezra is in the stage where he either opens his mouth or closes his eyes in all pictures – it’s SUPER fun)



“After the storm”

(After family pictures, there was a big storm with thunder and lightning. After it ended I went out & took pictures. It’s amazing how still everything was so still when just a short time before it had been so stormy)



Cousins in their matching jammies



The next day, Ezra & Audrey’s cousin left with her parents, so we took a little trip to another lighthouse called Piney Point. We had a great picnic in the park.



There was a big bell the kids had fun ringing!



The little lighthouse & the keeper’s house



The kids look like giants!



The Potomac River



A one-room schoolhouse used back when schools were still segregated. They said that they sometimes had as many as 40 students in this school!



Painting birdhouses!



Drawing with Daddy

We were sad to have our time at Gilgal come to an end, but we had a wonderful time together and enjoyed the days with our family!

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Gilgal House, part 2


There were tons of little jelly fish in the water around our house and Ezra really wanted to “fish” for them. So they rigged up a bucket & a string & were able to scoop one up at a time to examine them before returning them to their home!



Making “slime”



The finished product of their mermaid “slime”



Painting with Nene!



Another neighbor that came to visit occasionally!



On a rainy day, we took the kids to the Patuxent River Naval Air Museum! It was fun to walk around & see lots of different airplanes.



Climbing on things is the best!



Making Tie-dye cake!



The finished product!



Another day we headed out to play at the “beach”! It ended up being a perfect day as it wasn’t too humid, there was a nice breeze, AND we found a great shady spot along the water’s edge where the adults could relax while the kids played.



Visiting Point Lookout!



We climbed up into the lantern room!! It was a tight squeeze up the ladder, but we made it!



Visiting a nature museum at Point Lookout State Park

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Gilgal House, part 1

The day after Micah arrived we headed to Southern Maryland with the WHOLE family for a week of vacation together! We’ve never had that much time all together & it was SO wonderful! We did lots of fun things, but we also had lots of time for relaxing!


On our way! (Listening to Adventures in Odyssey made the trip go faster!)



After a stop at Cracker Barrel for lunch, we arrived at Gilgal House (picture taken from their website as we were having too much fun to stop & take pictures)!



The next morning we discovered that the caretakers who live in a house nearby had ducks! The kids really wanted to be friends with them, but the ducks had other ideas!



Sewing with Nene!



Working on his sticker book!



Fashion show!! (We’re not sure where Audrey learned her ‘model face’, but it seems pretty accurate!)



Nap time! (It’s hard to see clearly in this picture, but Micah didn’t shave for the 9 days we were apart & then for this day he shaved everything, but his “mustache”. Needless to say, I wasn’t impressed! Thankfully, it was gone by the next morning!)



Slip & Slide time!!!



Definitely a pro!!!



Audrey had fun, but wasn’t crazy about getting her face wet! She got better as the time went on!



The kids put on a “show” for all the adults complete with assigned seating & a paper for review comments afterwards! It mostly consisted of them running or riding around the circular drive and some “animal” tricks by Ezra!



We couldn’t do fireworks in this county, so our sister-in-law found these great masks!



Happy Fourth of July!!!

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With Micah having to work for all of June, the kids & I flew to Maryland ahead of him. It was my first time flying with both kids without another adult, so I was a bit nervous about it!


Watching planes take off at the Portland Airport (I love the mountain in the background!)



A Victory photo – Saying “Goodbye” to Daddy at security was emotional for Audrey, but we made it! Ezra was really good at encouraging her that it wouldn’t be too long before we saw him again!



Checking out our plane



Thank goodness for technology!!!  (They did other things on the plane as well, but this kept them occupied when we needed it most!)



We ended up with a slightly longer layover as our flight was delayed by about half an hour. I was thankful for all the ‘tricks’ I had packed for the kids.

Overall, the trip went well! We had a couple incidents with bathrooms where I was wishing for another adult to help with supervision, but the kids did a great job! Even Audrey who had been super nervous about take-off!


Audrey in her “Pepper Protection”! Nene & Da have an Irish Setter who LOVES Audrey, but Audrey wasn’t quite as excited about having her kisses all over her!



She has warmed up to her more as the time has gone on. Here she’s giving Pepper a drink!



Church on Sunday at Da’s church! This week was “Family Sunday” which meant no Sunday School. Thank goodness, Nene packed us lots to do in church!



Ezra drew lots of pictures!



That afternoon we got to go swimming with our cousin!



Playing at the park!



Audrey is really good at pumping & can swing on her own now!






Ezra is in LOVE!!!



Looking at pictures of “Little Micah” while eating breakfast!


We survived the 9 days without Daddy, but all of us were beyond thrilled to have him back with us!

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