Tuesday, July 12, 2011

July 4th

Hello Friends! Have you missed me? I'm sure you have. We were out of town for July 4th and just got back Friday around noon. I've tried to update since then, but it's been non stop since we've been back (and I had to catch up on Keeping Up with the Kardashians last night) so it's taken me a while to update this. There's lots to catch up on, so get ready.

We decided months ago to visit St. Louis for the 4th for a big family reunion. My dad is originally from St. Louis and all his siblings and the majority of my cousins live there as well. Once we decided that's where we were going, then came the big question--to drive or to fly? It should be an easy decision when a family decides to travel right? Traveling is not a hard thing, but when you travel with small kids, it's a whole different ballgame. If you drive, you can take more kid stuff, but it obviously takes longer. If you fly, you get their quicker, but run the risk of being subjected to the "please don't sit next to me" look on the passengers' faces when you board with a spunky 3 year old and a super fidgety almost 1 year old. We finally decided that David would fly since he had to get back to Atlanta for work and I would drive with my mom and the girls. My parents have a 2nd home, aka "the farm" in small, small, small town Missouri, about 2 hours south of St. Louis. The girls have never been and the last time David and I were there, we were dating. So, when planning this trip, we decided that we all would stay in St. Louis for a few days, David would go back to Atlanta and then myself, both girls and my parents would head to the farm for a few days. My sweet mom made the road trip with me because there was no way I could do all that driving my myself. So, she drove to ATL and then we headed to St. Louis on Thursday, June 30th. We decided at the last minute that Finley would fly up with David to avoid two 9 hour road trips. David and Finley flew up on Friday, the 1st and then David flew back on Monday and then we headed to the farm on July 4th. My mom, the girls, and I left the farm on Thursday, drove to Nashville and spent the night, and then drove the rest of the way to Atlanta last Friday, July 8th. Got it?

The road trip to St. Louis was uneventful and easy, thanks to the DVD player in my mom's van. We had such a fun time while we were there. Lots of family, lots of food, and lots of fun. We had our reunion on Sunday and for the 1st time, it rained so everything was moved indoors. There were over 70 people there and as Ella said to me, "Mommy, I have lots of friends". A special thank you to my cousins Pat and BC for taking an extra 8 people into their home for a few days. We had a great time and Ella was beside herself with all the fun things to do (pool, choo-choo train, drums, guitars, Uncle Rico etc) and Finley loved having all the extra attention. I say 8 people because my brother and his girlfriend, Kelly, came in town from New York as well. This was the first time Kelly had met anyone in the family. Nothing like meeting your boyfriend's parents, sister, brother-in-law, 2 nieces and 70 of your closest family members all at once. Kelly is AWESOME and we love her!! I told John not to mess this one up because I might like Kelly more than I like him.

After St. Louis, we left for the farm. Finley was not a happy camper and cried for about 2 hours on the way down. Oh well, what can one do? Once we got out of the car, she must have sensed she was in "God's country" because she was so happy. The farm was so much fun and thanks to the craftsmanship of Grandpa, the girls had a custom made rickshaw and box seat for the 4 wheeler, both painted pink and "John Deere green". It was so cute!!! Both girls loved the rickshaw and riding on the 4 wheeler and the tractor was a big hit too. Ella went fishing a couple of times and caught several big catfish. My dad and I even managed to sneak in a float trip. The last day, we took Ella over to some of my parents land and on the way we stopped to take in some of the local attractions, which included pigs, horses and cows. Ella was quick to point out that one cow was a "mommy cow because her take care of her babies" and the "daddy cows go to work at Mckesson". My dad and I died.

It was an awesome trip and a great way to celebrate the 4th of July. We are so blessed to live in this country and we are so thankful for all of past and current military. I think we took over 500 pictures from the 4th (and those are just my mom's). I won't share all of them, but are a more than a few:

The Rickshaw in Action

Ella and Grandpa on the Tractor

The girls on the 4 Wheeler.

Ella and Grandpa went fishing.

This was Ella's reaction when we told her we had to leave the farm to head home.

Our funny little girl.

Grandpa and his girls on the tractor. If you look close enough, you will notice Finley's camouflage pants. Her "camo couture" look for the farm.

All the toys at the farm, minus the tractor.

Close up of the "camo couture" look.

Me, Uncle John and the girls.

Ella and her new BFF, Cade.
Cousins Pat, BC and the girls. Our fun hosts in St. Louis.
Grandpa's craftsmanship. The girls LOVED it!!

Custom box seat on the 4 wheeler. Again, it was a big hit!

Ella's favorite, Uncle Rico.
The family.

Ella's "gobbles".
Too much action for Finley.
Uncle John, Kelly, and the girls. We LOVE Kelly!
Ella excited to see Daddy and Finley at the airport.
Ella Pre-Cupcake.
Ella Post-Cupcake.

Finley and Cousin Annie.


Sage and Jack said...

SO fun!! I'm glad y'all had a great trip. Love all the pictures.

Anonymous said...

Ella those are pretty little knickers you are wearing, with your legs up like that could you pull them aside for me please and show me your bald p-ssy, bald is the best kind