We had a great trip to Tennessee at the end of January! We bought non-stop tickets on Alaska Air instead of trying to go on buddy passes, and it was amazing! We got to the airport and didn’t have the added stress of wondering if we were going to make the flight! Virginia was so excited to go on a plane, we boarded the flight and she was so good! I figured out that Luke was almost exactly the same as Virginia was for her first flight. The flight was about 4 hours, and both kids were perfect! No tears from either of them at all. We landed at BNA and Rick was waiting for us right outside our gate! Virginia was so happy to see Pops! Cindy picked us up and we headed to their house.
Gracie and Matt were already at the house, we were pretty excited to meet him. Virginia was happy to be at Mimi and Pops’ house and see Missy and all of her toys there! She immediately made Matt have a tea party with her. The Mayo’s and Henson’s came over for dinner and we had a party for Gracie and Joe. Virginia was super well behaved even after the long flight and no nap (she literally didn’t sleep at all on the flight like I’d hoped). Luke was also very sweet and just happy to hang out. After dinner and presents, we started getting Luke and Virginia ready for bed. The time change had us all a little out of whack.
I had bought tickets for Joe, Gracie, Matt and I to do the Escape Game in Nashville, so we left to do that around 9:30. We did the Nashville room and were paired with one other couple. Joe and I were the only ones that had done an Escape room before, so it was fun to kind of have the upper hand! We all worked great together and the room was so much fun! We made it out with almost 15 minutes to spare!
Sunday morning we all hung out a bit, but Matt and Gracie had to drive back to Charlotte and we had to get to Lebanon for Joe’s party at the farm. Mom was amazing and picked up Joe’s cake and all the sides, and we just had to pick up the bbq. The usual people came over, and everyone was super excited to meet Luke! Virginia had fun seeing Lillian and Christian. I couldn’t believe how big they both are, especially Christian! He was so much bigger than I was expecting! It was so great to finally be in the farmhouse, it looks amazing! I’m so glad it is finally done and they are all settled! There was so much room to move around and hang out.
Sunday night Joe and I had reservations for The Mad Platter, so we got dressed up and went out. Something wasn’t sitting right with me though, and I started feeling super sick at the restaurant. I had ordered mushroom risotto, but I couldn’t even eat it. Joe ate his dinner really quick and we rushed back to the farm. I felt fine by the morning, and felt horrible for making us rush through a date (especially a pricey one!) We hung out Monday in Lebanon, and Tuesday we drove to Maryville.
The kids were both great on the way to Maryville, sleeping most of the way there. Nana Blackburn made tacos for lunch and we ate with Papa Charlie. He seemed to be doing as well as expected, but he didn’t say much during lunch. Virginia had fun running around their house, and Luke was in a good mood. Tim, Jean, and the girls came over when the girls got out of school so we got to visit with them. We stayed until about 6 and then headed out. We stopped at Sonic to get dinner, and it was packed because they had some special running that night. It took a while to get our food and eat (the weather was so nice we were able to sit at a table on the patio!) We got on the road and Virginia was kind of crabby, she wanted me to sit in the backseat with her and Luke but I didn’t want to be squished. Halfway home we stopped to get gas and feed Luke and change his diaper, and Joe spilled diesel gas all over his pants and shoes. He had to take off his pants and shoes and leave them in the trunk because it smelled so strongly! Both kids were upset most of the way home so it made for a very long two hour drive!
We hung out in Lebanon on Wednesday, and then went to Thompson’s Station Thursday. Rick got home from his trip Friday, so it was nice that he got to see the kids again! On Saturday we went out to lunch and went to a playground for Virginia. My parents and grandma Carol drove out Saturday night for dinner, we tried to go to Mellow Mushroom but it was crazy packed so we just got Papa Murphy’s and ate at Rick and Cindy’s house. It was easier that way, we got to hang out and not worry about entertaining the kids. We got to go to Chuy’s for lunch on Sunday before heading to the airport.
The flight home was about an hour longer, but the kids still managed to be really well behaved. We landed just before 8 our time and got our bags, got the shuttle to our car, and were home around 9. It was such a great trip, we spent our time in Lebanon just hanging out with my family. Virginia loved seeing her cousins, and Joe and I managed to see a movie and go out to eat without the kids a few times. At the farm Virginia gets to play with Willow, and she loves giving the dogs treats every day with mom.
We’ve been busy with our playdates, gymnastics, and other fun stuff since we got home. Luke is such an easy baby that we’ve been getting out on the weekends to do errands and explore different areas. It is so nice that Joe has his own car again, he has been working late the past few weeks and it is always great when he can grab dinner on his way home!
Virginia has started to show a lot of my traits, like being a bit of a control freak. If we don’t do things her way, she throws a fit. We’re working on getting her to be more easy going but she is very independent and stubborn. She is so smart though, so we have to be careful what we say in front of her! She is so sweet to Luke though, she really is a great big sister! The other weekend I asked Virginia if she wanted to go to the grocery store with me, and she asked if baby Luke was coming with us. I told her he was staying home with daddy, and she started crying and said she needed to stay with Luke. It was adorable, and great for me because I got to grocery shop alone!
Virginia has learned me and Joe’s names, and that our last name is Blackburn. So we do role call every day, but she calls Luke “baby Luke Blackburn.” Luke is almost four months old, and really is just the sweetest little boy. He smiles if you smile at him, giggles if you tickle his sides, and loves to sit up and watch Virginia play. He has pretty good control of his head, and we have started letting him sit in the Bumbo.
I’ve been really lucky the past few weeks to get to go out and have breaks with my girlfriends. A few weeks ago I did Bunco, then a dinner out, then a baby shower brunch, and last weekend I walked a 5K race in Seattle. Joe is amazing and doesn’t make me feel bad for taking time to myself! He has been working really hard, and it has paid off! He just had a review and got the highest score he could. Because of the great review he gets a big bonus, and a promotion with a pay raise! I was pretty sure he would get a great review, but we were both surprised by the promotion! I’m so proud of him!