Monday, August 25, 2008

Group date: Steak and siblings

It has been a dream come true to live in the same town as most of my siblings (all but one, actually). We have regular Sunday dinner get-togethers at each other's house, swap babysitting, go tag-team errand running, and celebrate birthdays and most holidays together. It is the best set up! The other weekend while we sat in Cliff and Lisa's garage eating popsicles and watching over our precious yard sale items that weren't selling we started calendaring. Among other things, we planned our first group date. Like I said earlier, we usually just swap babysitting for our dates. We decided Outback was the place and all found babysitters. You can't imagine how excited I was for the date--great food, the best company, and NO KIDS!!!!!! When we showed up and were being seated, the hostess asked if we'd be needing high-chairs or kids menus and we practically burst out laughing from glee. It's not that we don't love our kids, but when we ALL get together, an uninterrupted conversation is not possible--there's just too many little people with all kinds of different needs. A break every now-and-then is the most refreshing and wonderful thing.
So here we all are at Outback in early August. Sunni, Josh, Lisa, Cliff, Samia (Joe had to work), Me and Jesse.

Guess who's walkin' now?

15 Month old Lucas !
You can see my hand in the pic with a toy trying to coax the little guy to walk over so I could snap a pic. Jesse wasn't around for the very first steps and I wanted to document every little bit for him. Lucas was a good little boy and waited until he saw his "Papi" to take more than two steps together. In fact, he took his longest walk across the room in Artesia when we were up to visit Jesse over the weekend.

He is a 'late walker' compared to most, except Collin who waited until 16 months to start. Fine with me--I don't mind my kids waiting a while to get mobile. And to me, there's nothing cuter than the wagging diaper behind of a crawling baby. Although, the first clumsy steps are a close second to that.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The 4th of July

Hey, not bad, only a month late on this one. :) We took a trip down to Carlsbad for the 4th, there was a big Williams shin-dig reunion sort of thing and we booked a hotel and were totally excited to see everyone. For some reason, I was particularly looking forward to a road trip with my little fam. I always forget the annoyances of handing toys to boys who've dropped them, singing songs till I'm hoarse, and answering a bazillion questions of what this or that is that we're passing. Collin got a little sick on the day we were planning to leave and we thought our trip was going to be no-go, but the next day he perked up a bit and we hit the road.

By leaving a day late we missed most of the reunion but got some good immediate-family chatting. We all went to Gaga's (Jesse's Grandma) and then to the river to watch fireworks. It was one of those experiences I'd like to create over and over again. To sit on the green grass with almost all the fam. together and watch a spectacular show. It was bliss. Perfect weather, perfect company, and it felt great to reflect on the amazing blessing of living in the good ole' USA and all that was sacrificed so that it would be such a great nation. I am blessed and grateful.

Another fun reflection of this trip was that it was the first time Jesse and our little family have stayed in a hotel. I liked to walk into our room as if I were housekeeping and notice that it must be a little family staying in the room--a pack-n-play in the corner by the bathroom, a little bed-pad on the floor made of beach towels and the parents on the bed. I may be sounding really silly, but I just loved our short stay and our little trip.

We got to look around Artesia some more and went to Jobe's (Jesse's cousin) house for a fish-fry and anniversary celebration for the grandparents. All I have to say is--GOOD PEOPLE. I love the Williams bunch. From the parents, the brothers and sisters, to the aunts and uncles, to the cousins. I just felt surrounded by wonderful folks.

After the party simmered down, we got in the pool with the boys and had a grand old time. I sure am feeling better about moving down to Artesia after such a pleasant time with all those Artesians--mostly Jesse's cousins and their families.

Tired little boys--we did a lot of driving.