Vacation 2014 Uncle Wesley's/South Carolina
This year we wanted to visit Uncle Wesley and show the boys and ourselves what all he does and where he lives! Now when we talk about Uncle Wesley going on missions they understand a lot better.
Uncle Wesley at the moment lives in Charleston, South Carolina so we had to plan for a pretty good driving distance... and with 4 kids that can be pretty challenging or it can be tons of fun or as in our case BOTH!
First we had to find a vacation sitter to go with us and after praying and asking and begging (just kidding we didn't have to beg) Laura Calverly was so kind to say she would go with us. Laura is an awesome young lady who goes to our church and as I learned on our trip is an amazing help, way more than we bargained for. We were so blessed she said yes! Autumn is a very, how do you say, picky young lady when it comes to who she shares her love with. SO we were very very grateful for Laura. Autumn loves her!
James is a big Braves fan so we had already planned on going to a Braves home game since we were going to be close to their field in Atlanta. Even though it was several hours away from Wesley it was closer than if we were home for sure. And the plan was for all us adults to go (hence the reason for a sitter). James and I also wanted a date night while we were out so poor Laura had 2 nights with just herself and the kiddos. We also had the beach and seeing Uncle Wesley's plane on the list of things to do. After we started on the trip Jessica and Chris (James sister and her husband who were also in our bandwagon) shared with us about going to Fort Sumter and we were so glad they did!
We liked having a few plans without really being tied to a specific schedule. It was freeing to be able to decide to just sit and relax at Uncle Wesley's apartment pool instead of constantly filling the schedule with activities or events.
On the way there we decided to make it a 2 day trip since we were privileged to be able to attend Victoria's wedding that Saturday! She was a beautiful bride and I couldn't be more happy for her and her new life ahead!
That next morning after our complimentary free breakfast we headed for the second leg of our journey. Which was much better after some leg stretching and at least a little sleep. We ended up making it to Wesley's by supper time where Wesley had supper ready for us! Super sweet and a great blessing. We were ready for home cooked food after the last several meals on the road. That evening we also did meal planning for the week and sent Jessica and James to the grocery store.
Uncle Wesley's apartment was new and beautiful with white carpet, white walls and all I could think was..."Oh NO!" 4 kids, 4 days in a sterile environment with neighbors on the other side of the wall, how will we survive?! Well I'm glad to say we did and not only survived but thrived! Ok maybe thrived is a bit of a stretch....
Justice and Dawson at the pool.
Aunt Jessie holding Autumn in the cold water.
Daddy showing survival skills ;)
We got to take 2 trips to the beach both trips were for a pretty good chunk of the day. The kids LOVED the ocean. Justice and Dawson scared me a little with how confident they were in their own swimming skills. I am just grateful we had so many adults to help watch and go and be with them in the water. I mostly stayed in the shade with Autumn and people watched with my brother in law who was enjoying just watching the kids and chilling in the sun. I was also glad it was early in the year we were there. So it wasn't too hot! It really was perfect.
A friend found floating in the ocean.
The beach wore her out!
Eli people watching from the stroller on a forced sun break from momma.
The day we went to Fort Sumter was fun as well because the kids got to ride on a boat/ferry for the first time which they enjoyed. Fort Sumter was built on an island so that is the only way there and back. Very good for older kids but I think Eli and Autumn were done within the first 10 minutes of being there. I don't think war history is really an interest to them at the moment. But James was loving it! It was definitely worth the trip though regardless of what the younger ones thought of it. Also it was right at lunch time so the kids were starving by the time we arrived back. But thankfully Wesley saved the day with a Steak and Shake not too far away!
Had us some Steak and Shake.
The first day we went to the beach we decided to go figure out and see exactly what Uncle Wesley does first. The base was on the way to the beach so really it was perfect. First we had to get clearance, check. Then drive around a little before the kids saw many different planes and already started getting exited. By the time we made it to Uncle Wesley's plane they were ready to climb up there and see what all cool things there was to see. We weren't allowed to do too much as far as pictures and video goes, understandably. But we did get some and the kids and daddy loved pushing buttons and making the back of the plane OPEN up! It was pretty impressive. So proud of our little brother for all he has become. He's grown to be such a responsible, kind young man. Who happens to also fight for our country. WAY TO GO WESLEY!!
Autumn walking into Uncle Wesley's plane...
Autumn thought the plane was pretty sweet.
Dawson my poor claustrophobic one pretty much parked on the steps of the plane. Even though it was a huge plane he needed fresh air.
Up to the cockpit.
checking out the back of the plane
then again after it was opened to show how they load and unload
Can't remember what was so interesting but must have been important.
All the boys strapped up but it was too hot up there for this momma so I only got a picture of Eli.
For date night we found a spot known only in Charleston which is what we wanted. No chains something unique to the area. Jessica, Chris, James and I double dated for supper. It was very nice getting some time away to just ourselves. Then we went shopping in the same open buildings where they used to buy and trade slaves. Very sad... You can see the roof of one of the buildings behind us in the picture below. Then behind that a church.
Date night downtown on the rooftop!
Uncle Wesley has the coolest pictures from his travels!
Before heading home our last day with Uncle Wesley was spend traveling to Atlanta, then that night we had the game. It was also a date night. So SCORE! Not often we get 2 nights in one week. One blessed momma right here!
Braves WON!! Whose that good looking guy next to me? A cutie for sure!
On the ride home there was no air flow to the back except through the front windows! But everyone did very well considering and still had smiles on their faces. We originally had a fan blowing the air from the front into the back but the fuse or some wires must have blown/broken because it just stopped working... Thankfully God gave us an over cast kind of cooler day on the ride home.
The kids loved the pool at the apartments, they loved the beach, they loved Uncle Wesley's awesome plane he rides in. They had a blast! James and I loved seeing them love everything, we loved getting to see the Braves play PLUS a date night! And mostly we loved playing games and seeing family we don't usually get to talk to face to face with. Over all it was an amazing vacation.
And I left this one for last because it's one of my favorites! This was from inside Uncle Wesley's plane.