Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A Mini Vacation

With a possible move to Colorado in our near future, we are trying to check off a few items on this side of the country. 

This weekend presented the opportunity to use up a weekend in Gatlinburg we bought at the school auction in February. And since we have to go through Knoxville to get there, we decided to add a little time and visit with some of our most favorite people!

Naturally when you're hanging out, talking, and visiting sometimes your brain (at least mine) doesn't remember to take pictures!!! I don't even think it's my brain as much as it is having Hudson as a 2 year old!

But even without photographic evidence, I can write about the time we got to spend with our family and friends!

Grandma and Uncle Eric They made the road trip but Knoxville was their destination. We all went to dinner Saturday night at Mom's favorite restaurant, Shonos. Pretty sure she's been dreaming of that meal since she left Knoxville!! 

Donna and Barry aka BarryDonna aka our bonus grandparents aka my steparents (it's so much easier to explain them to people that way, but it baffles me that people rarely question why my steparents live together!). The kids had a fun time playing hide and seek both times we were at the house - who knew there were so many fun places to hide at Donna and Barry's house?!? And Hudson enjoyed walking Chumlee and added a new recognizable word - "puppy"! Well, it was Chumlee or his new sleeping bag - one of them was the reason for the word!

Kerri and Brian - we got to have dinner with them (and the whole family) and spend the night at their house. Only people who have been through having 4 kids at our kids' ages aren't phased by our family crashing at their pad. The kids loved swimming in the pool and of course, the puppies - they still have 4 puppies waiting to go home from the last litter. Sam insisted on pictures of the puppies - so I have those! None of our friends though! Haha
And the parents - Luke and Lily
And our first child actually went with us on this little trip - he needed a vacation from his baby brother, Nash! 
I got Kerri's arm in that picture - that counts!

Miss Jane aka our bonus grandma We got to have lunch with her on our way home today. The kiddos love spending time with her, especially Marlie (I get it, she's been one of my favorite people since I was 10!) - and today they also mentioned how much they love her hugs! The kids got to play on the playground after we ate so I actually got a chance to visit! Our visits are always too short, but mean the world to our kiddos, my Mom, and Jay and I.

On our way out of Knoxville Sunday, we stopped and had lunch at a restaurant where our friend is the GM. It was good to see his face - he and Jay were friends when I met them, so I have known him as long as my husband. 

We then enjoyed a couple days at a cabin in the mountains. Luckily the kids loved it and enjoyed seeing the mountains . . . Because they're gonna be living in the mountains soon! Sunday was a rainy day so we hit up the Aquarium.
And then there were penguins!
We also stopped in the Pearl Harbor Anniversary Exhibit. Walking through that exhibit made me shiver - there were all kinds of memorabilia from that time period and advertisements urging people to conserve things like gas and tires. We are currently experiencing a gasoline shortage in our region and I am terrified for the results of the election - those things in combination with the power of the exhibit gave me chills!
We went to dinner at one of our favorite restaurants - Smokey Mountain Brewery - beer cheese dip . . . SO GOOD!!

Sunday we went to Dollywood . . . for 7 hours . . . and it was sooooo much fun! I can't wait to do amusement parks more as the kids get older. Dollywood will always hold a special place in my heart - it's where I grew up going all the time, and since everything is supposed to be older, things don't change!
My baby boy being so big!!!
And we rode the water ride 3 times, took the train through the mountains, dipped candles, played games, ate treats, and ride rides. It was a great day with our kids!!!! And oh my - Jay and I both took a turn with Marlie on the Lightening Rod, the country's fastest wooden roller coaster - 74mph people . . . It was the BEST coaster I have ever been on!!!!

Some great signs I saw . . . 
And we wrapped up the day with dinner at the Mellow Mushroom in Gatlinburg. We got to eat outside, upstairs and the place was almost empty - so the kids had fun with buying songs and the music machine!
We said goodbye to the cabin Tuesday morning and left through Cades Cove - such a beautiful drive . . .

It's going to be a hectic week catching up from the time away, but it was definitely worth it!

1 comment:

Pink Caddy Rocks said...

Loved seeing everyone! Hugs till the next time.....