Monday, May 30, 2011

memorial weekend 2011: day 6

monday marked memorial day where we reflected and thanked the great men and women who have and are serving this great country. they were in our thoughts throughout the day and we are so very appreciative of all that they do.

today started off very low key. tita karmie came up to the lakehouse considering it was her off day after working the entire weekend. the kids were so excited to see her as they woke up that morning. lola cooked everyone breakfast and then we got ready for a swim in the lake. i packed our boat bag full of snacks, drinks, SPF, sunglasses, and other necessities because i knew today would be the day where jay took us all out for a long cruise so that we could soak up some quality vitamin D being it was our last day at the lake.(side note: notice jay's "swamp people" t-shirt that he is wearing. it's of troy (our favorite) and as he saw it at the bass pro shop, he knew he had to buy the gem.) so we board up and jay decides to drive us over to ryan creek marina near big bridge. it's about an hour away by boat traveling at a fairly good speed. he wanted to eat lunch at a place called "the wake" since a guy he went to high school with owns and operates it. we even tried to eat there last year, but it was closed due to renovations so we were all really excited that it was open again. i ate a chicken salad sandwich with fries and it was yummy.everyone enjoyed their lunch so off we went back on to the boat for the cruise heading back home. while on our way, abby asked if we could stop at "turtle rock." since the sun was blazing and we were all ready for a dip in the water, we thought it'd be a great idea. words cannot express how awesome it felt to jump in. we let the kids climb up on the huge rock and sit on it as the waves crashed along. here are some pics...jay asked lyla if she wanted to jump off and she said yes. so they start walking towards the top and jay tosses her in. admittedly, i was a bit worried that she was going to freak the freak out. thankfully, her sweet little head popped back out of the water as she screamed, "i did it!" i was so relieved and so proud of her. good job, lyla. next cousin carson slid down the rock and into the water where tita karmie caught him. it was sweet and now both toddlers can say that they "jumped off turtle rock." (rewind if you will, but this is actually a big deal because when the water level drops about 30 feet during the drought of the summer, turtle rock is HUGE. and HIGH. and many people attempt to jump off, but never do because it is scary. so see, it's a victory in itself. good job, kids! lol)about five hours later, we finally arrived back at the lakehouse where lola was taking care of sweet baby jemma. i can't wait till the day that all three of our girls are old enough to spend all day playing around on the boat in the lake. thank you so much, lola...you are a lifesaver in more ways than one and we truly appreciate your help all the time. all in all, we had an awesome week celebrating memorial day weekend with the ones we love up at the lake. can't wait to do it again!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

memorial weekend 2011: day 5

sunday was the day where we decided to have some friends and their families up for the day to play. jay grilled out his usual pork tenderloin and hot dogs for the kids while everyone else brought up a dish to share. as soon as everyone arrived around 11:00am, we all headed down to the dock for some swimming and lounging around. nothing's better than floating in the lake with a bottle of boone's farm...keeping it classy, people. one fuzzy navel at a time. here are some pics...an hour or so passes and the meat is done cooking. everyone dries off and heads back inside to make ourselves a plate. the menu consisted of tenderloin, hot dogs, broccoli salad, hashbrown casserole, corn on the cob, cheese bread, green bean casserole, spin dip, and key lime and turtle pies for dessert. everything was absolutely delicious and definitely hit the spot after being out in the sun and swimming. also, lola took a group picture for me as everyone was gathered in the kitchen. here are some pics...after our tummies were full, we all headed back down towards the dock for more swimming and fun. some of the kiddos wanted to go tubing so jay got everything set up and off we went. i really like the fact that tubing is fun for all ages and very safe for the little ones especially when jay just drives them in a straight line. it's only when the big kids get on till he starts slinging them around every where. hehe. here are some pics...later, jay drops some of us back off at the dock to meet up with others and hang out while taking turns on who's next in the tube. uncle germy comes to visit on his seadoo and gives both abby and lyla a ride. they were both so excited to be in the front seat acting as if they were solely driving it themselves. luckily, we got a picture of abby on it with him, but when it came time for lyla's turn, i was already swimming again in the water. nonetheless, they both had fun and weren't scared. here are some pics...lastly, everyone ended the day with chatting and relaxing at the dock before packing up and going home. the girls had fun dancing on top of the boat to stacy's awesome ipod playlist. it was pretty funny to watch. overall, it was definitely a fun-filled day and everyone slept like babies that night. happy memorial day weekend, everyone!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

memorial weekend 2011: day 4

saturday, we drove over to point mallard in decatur for their annual hot air balloon jubilee classic. we arrived around 5:45pm since the balloons were scheduled to be inflated and in flight from 6:00 to 7:30pm. i was worried that we were running late, but luckily they were too. the weather seemed to be perfect for the occasion since it wasn't rainy and windy like it was last year. that said, there were a total of 19 balloons that we counted and a better crowd that we remembered. we packed a blanket and some snacks for a picnic as we listened to the live band that played nearby. we waited as the hot air balloons were being filled one by one. abby and lyla danced and played with cousin carson and then walked a little closer so that they could touch one as it was going up. sweet baby jem-jem also enjoyed laying down, wiggling, and watching the big balloons in the sky. we stayed for a couple of hours before it got dark. all in all, it was a great night spent with family making memories we'll never forget. until next year!

Friday, May 27, 2011

memorial weekend 2011: day 3

friday morning, abby and lyla woke up and made a fort in the sunroom just like they do every summer. they hide under a sheet/blanket/towel that they drape over the two recliners and then later find a big cushion to use as a bridge over the two...they lay over it as they both fall in between the middle. it's seem to be funny every time. luckily, no one ever gets hurt. knock on wood. here are some pics...after eating pancakes for breakfast, we all got ready donning our bathing suits, sunglasses, and floaties as we walked down to the dock. the mitchelles were waiting for us as they drove over by boat. we swam, drank, played, laughed, and sang along to stacy's ipod. later, uncle germy stopped by on his pontoon boat and we swam around some more. here are some pics...soon the girls were begging and pleading with daddy to "let's go feed the fishies." this incessant want of theirs is where we go to rock creek marina so that jay can fill up on gas, the girls can feed crackers off the dock to the huge carp fish that are their "pets" there (absolutely no fishing allowed) and then they get to pick out a ring pop. of course they want to "feed the fishies"...a ring pop is always involved. so that's exactly what we did. on the way over, jay sarcastically made fun of me as he opened his arms out wide as if he were welcoming the sun on his skin. i love that white man. he cracks me up.

also, some times during long boat rides, the girls like to lay down and sleep as i cover them up with their towels. i gotta admit, i love when they do this. it's a cute little sight and makes the cruise that much more enjoyable...no opening snacks, answering questions, fixing hair, etc. they just sleep. here are some pics...once we got back in, we decided to eat dinner out. jay was craving a steak from barangus in jasper and then we hit up the wal-mart for a couple of more groceries which included bottles of moscato wine. yum-o.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

memorial weekend 2011: days 1 & 2

jay has a lot of vacation days built up at work, but rarely uses any. i guess reason being is because he absolutely loves his job and well for the most part, it's hard traveling with a nearly 3 month old when you don't have family or someone to help out when the older kids want to go do something. don't get me wrong, we're pretty awesome at tag-teaming, but i don't want to be strapped down with the baby all the time while everyone else is having fun. this is where my family comes in. god bless every single one of them. :) so we decided to take a mini "staycation" to the lakehouse for about a week. my mom took off on thursday and friday as well and my dad came up in between his shifts at work. add on that my mamaw lives only minutes away from our lakehouse, and well, we had the perfect amount of help with sweet baby jem-jem while we went swimming, cruised around on the boat, played with friends, etc all while baby jem-jem slept and wanted to be held.

furthermore, we had an absolute blast from start to finish. it was relaxing and a nice change of pace and scenery. i will try my best to relay the events, but will most likely hit on the highlights. thankfully, my severe addiction of taking numerous pictures help me to remember them. and so it begins...

wednesday afternoon, we picked up jay's boat and headed to the lake. as usual, i called mamaw beforehand and requested our utmost favorite meal: chicken and dumplins. we put the boat in the water as jay drove it to the lakehouse, unpacked everything (by the way, packing for a family of five for a week felt like i packed enough stuff to stay for a month. i'm an over-packer by nature. fact. better safe than sorry, i say.) and then we headed over to the farmhouse where mamaw had a yummy dinner awaiting us. it was absolutely delicious and mamaw got to hold sweet baby jemma for the first time ever as we sat down to eat. my cousin julie bug was there and we all talked for a bit while abby proceeded to brush her hair...that was in a ponytail. nice. here are some pics...the next morning, the girls woke up excited and begged their pawpaw to go outside with them as they picked some wildflowers. this is one of their favorite things to do with their pawpaw because he always makes them a beautiful crown out of the flowers to wear on their heads. here are some pics...after breakfast, we all got ready, put our swimsuits on and enough SPF to supply a small army. then, we headed down to the dock for some swimming and later cruised around on the boat. abby and lyla had a blast laughing and giggling as they tossed their hair in the wind. it was the funniest cutest thing ever. they did it repeatedly until almost giving themselves a whiplash and falling to the floor. silly girls. then they wanted to help daddy drive the boat so they took turns...which actually ended up with both of them sitting on him and grabbing the steering wheel. can't wait for baby jemma to get big enough to make another small seat on his lap. jay loves it. i know he does. there's just something about having daddy's girls. i know because i am one. here are some pics...after cruising around for a bit (which is my favorite because i get to soak up some sun and the fact that the wind in my hair and the hum of the water splashing behind us just puts me at immediate ease), we headed back to the lakehouse. after eating dinner, jay went down to the dock for some fishing. he caught a good size catfish and the girls were in awe at seeing it. lyla even wanted to touch it. pawpaw brought it back up to the house and put it in the sink before cleaning and skinning it. here are some pics...