Home from the never ending vacation!

Part 1!

Our whirlwind summer is halfway over! We managed to move out of the condo and in to our house without too much craziness. We got the keys on a Thursday, and we got a U-Haul that Saturday. Joe and I dropped the kids off at Lin’s house, and picked up the truck and met the movers at our condo. They were super fast! We had the truck loaded, driven over to the new house, and unpacked in about an hour and a half. Joe and I had to make another trip to the condo on our own to load up another truck full, but the movers had taken care of all the big furniture (even having to lower our sofa over the balcony with nothing but their hands). We unloaded the truck, returned the U-Haul, and had a lot of our furniture assembled before we picked up the kids at dinner time. We couldn’t have done it without Lin and Brennan’s help, the kids had so much fun with them and we didn’t have to worry about them.

Our first night in the house went really well! Luke cried for a while because he wasn’t used to having his own room, but Virginia was so excited! When I tucked her in, she told me, “My room is so cool Mom!” I was determined to have the house as settled as possible before we went on vacation, and I managed to empty all the boxes by Tuesday! The kitchen was pretty tricky to organize, we have less cabinets than I was used to, but I made it work! Luckily the garage had extra cabinets for storing all my random gadgets! Everything else was pretty easy to set up!

Our trip to Nashville wasn’t too bad. We didn’t have to leave for the airport until about 10 am, so we didn’t have to rush. The kids were great getting through the airport, the lines moved pretty quick checking our bags and getting through security. Virginia was perfect on the flight, but Luke threw a few fits because he didn’t want to stay in our aisle. He didn’t sleep very long, but we made it! We got to the farm and got settled, but the next morning we got up and hit the road to Charlotte! The kids were awesome on the drive, Luke slept a good part of the way and Virginia was happy. She’s definitely our star traveler! We got to see Cindy, Rick, Nana B., Tim, Jean, Gracie, and Matt and a bunch of other people right after we got to our hotel.

The hotel was really nice, and the first night we had a king suite. Joe and I had our own bedroom and the kids slept in the living room, so that was nice! On Friday Virginia and I went to the bridal luncheon at the Duke mansion. Virginia was so happy that she was included, and she was really well behaved. During lunch, everyone went around and told how they met Gracie, and everyone had such sweet stories. I felt lucky that I was included! The rehearsal was at the church that afternoon, and the dinner was later in a happening part of town. The kids and I couldn’t stay long at the dinner, it started at 7 and we left at about 7:50 to go pick up my dad. Luckily we were able to eat some food before we left, and Joe stayed to hang out with everyone. The kids were super excited to see their Granddaddy!

Saturday morning it was fun to see everyone down getting breakfast together at the hotel. Virginia was so excited for the wedding! I had to shower and eat quick, because I had the first time slot to get my hair done. The makeup/hair lady was really nice, she did a great job on my hair! I was pretty impressed with how calm Gracie and Cindy were, everyone was so excited and didn’t seem stressed! I spent the day going in and out of the bridal suite, watching the girls get their hair and make up done. Joe and I took my dad and the kids to lunch, but we were all just kind of hanging out around the hotel visiting with people. The kids took a pretty good nap, and then we had to get ready to go the church. Joe went with all the groomsman to get ready, so my dad kept Luke to take him to the church closer to the wedding. Virginia and I went to the bridal suite and watched Gracie and Cindy finish getting ready.

A limo bus took us all to the church. The ride over was so fun, Virginia was on cloud nine being with all of us. Gracie was so happy and so excited, and she looked so beautiful! We got Virginia dressed at the church, and she looked adorable. At the church we took a few pictures, and then it was time for the ceremony! I was the third bridesmaid in line, I was so nervous walking down the aisle! It was so long, and there were so many people! Virginia walked down the aisle holding hands with Jordis and Audrey, they looked so pretty!

When Gracie and Rick walked down the aisle I almost cried! Gracie was so pretty, and when I looked at Matt he looked so happy! The ceremony was beautiful, not too long. Virginia was a little fidgety, but nothing noticeable. My dad was in the back of the church with Luke, and I could hear him make a few little peeps, but he was quiet enough to stay for the whole service. After the ceremony, Joe and I got to walk down the aisle together, so that was really sweet! We took some family photos, and then my dad took the kids over to the country club. Joe and I rode with the bridal party in the limo bus. They had drinks on the bus, and Matt’s little brother was playing music. It was so much fun, everyone was so happy!

We took some group photos at the club, and then we were stuck in a little room during cocktail hour so the guests couldn’t get to us. After Gracie and Matt took their photos, the bridal party was announced and we went into the reception. Gracie and Matt had their first dance, which was amazing. They’d taken lessons, and it was so impressive! Rick gave a beautiful speech which made me tear up. Joe and I sat at a table with my dad, the kids, Tim, Jean, and the girls. The buffet dinner was amazing, the kids even ate a bunch! After they’d eaten, Cindy took Virginia around to visit with some people, but it was getting late so my dad took the kids back to the hotel. I wish they could have stayed longer and danced, but it was already past 8 and they were exhausted.

Joe and I visited with people, the place was packed! There was a very loud live band, so we spent a lot of time outside. We almost missed them cutting the cake, but got inside just in time. We did a little dancing, but my feet were killing me in the stupid new heels I was wearing. Gracie got on stage and sang a song, she was pretty good! It went by really fast, and all of a sudden it was time for their big send off. Everyone waved them off as they got into a super cute old timey car with a drive to take them away. Joe and I didn’t get back to our hotel until about midnight! Poor Joe had to leave at about 5 the next morning to get to their airport. He took a flight with two layovers to get back to Seattle so he could make it work on Monday. My dad was a great help driving back from Charlotte. The kids were great during the car ride, but it’s always nice to have another adult for an extra pair of hands!

We made it to the farm in the afternoon and the kids were so happy to be able to run free! I’ll finish this extremely long post at another time, because it is 10 pm and I’m sleepy!