I store up family memories like a ninja because I live 10 hours away from them the rest of the year. So get ready for a blast of iphone memories+ a few extra camera photos.
It was a jog getting to Pennsylvania two weeks before my sister’s wedding. I hitched a ride from Tennessee with my brother in law who was already going on a business trip. But first, I had to hitch a ride six hours west to Tennessee with my husbands’s siblings and their partners who were already in South Carolina visiting their friends.
Traveling 19 hours to get to my native land was not especially grand, but it was better than shopping for a cheap airplane ticket. Well, I tell myself it was. 🙂 I’m beginning to loathe long driving hours in my old age. It’s the perfect setup for a headache, but I try to take care of myself the best I can.
Here’s the best hanging out selfie of the year, compliments of my brother in law’s tall self.
Goodbye’s with my hubby are always so awful, but I got through it without tears. (I did that at home before we left.)
Once in TN, I had to kill time on my Monday before we headed north. My hosts were both at work during the day, so I had the house to myself. I was planning to spend it writing, but my laptop screen decided to malfunction that day.
I was convinced the end was nigh, but the issue resolved itself when I took it in to a computer repair serviceman once I was in Pennsylvania. I paid $15 for a man to drag his TV into work so he could hook my laptop to it with an HDMI cable in order to prove that it was only the screen that was causing the issue and not the hard drive. Amazingly, that was when my screen started working again!
I do have trouble getting my laptop screen to project to our tv sometimes. I usually just play around with it until it works. After I explained the issues I’ve had with it, the repairman thought it was probably the switch going bad, which is minor. I was happy with that.
It’s been working great every since.
Anyways, I do have a way of getting sidetracked. Instead of writing, I had a super chill day watching a show and watching some past services on Betheltv.
It’s always a challenge to feed myself away from home, but sometimes it just falls into place. I fried myself some eggs for breakfast, and was delighted to find kefir in my host’s refrigerator. I made a strawberry smoothie with kefir and the vanilla protein powder my hubby packed for me.
For lunch, I walked to the town coffee shop. The yellow stuff is potato salad. I decided to enjoy because it will be a long time before I eat a white potato again. Ha. I was stuffed.
Top right is my essential oil diffuser necklace from Yellow Reformation plus my host’s house key kept safe while I was out of the house. Well, relatively safe until the clasp came loose and spilled my neck bling all over the coffee shop floor and under a gentleman’s chair. That was awkward, but his wife helped me find the pieces.
I love my diffuser. A drop of essential oil keeps a health boosting scent close to my nose all day. Call me weird, but I prefer this a million times over heady, toxic perfumes. I love me a clean, healthy scent that is kind to my skin. At the end of the day, the used diffuser simply needs a rinse and air dry to make it all new again.
For dinner, my sister in law make a yummy buffet style haystack. I contributed with the guacamole. I was dining like a king.
Tuesday morning came around 5 am. You can see me enjoying the 13 hour drive above. Left is morning with my naked drink. Right is late afternoon headache and all.
That is not a reflection on my company. My brother in law and nephew were great fun, but all day in the back of a truck didn’t make it to my top favorite incredible experiences. The truck was cool though. 🙂
PA skies were beautiful.
My mom and brother picked me up two hours from mom’s house. I was feeling like a truck hit me by the time I got to the house, but I was so excited to see all the babies…and everyone else of course.
My sister and brother in law holding the two smallest offspring. I had to snap a pic.
Story time with grandma.
I went grocery shopping with my mom the next day to get settled in and pick up a few pf my own things to make myself feel better about eating her food + make it easier to fend for myself when I needed to eat.
I have this thing for bows. It works for my shorty short hair right now.
Here is the first set of shameless selfies with my little squishy, Kyler Paul. He always obliges so willingly, which is why there will be so many. 🙂
With my two nephews. Big brother Kameron and little brother Kyler.
That first week I got to go wedding shopping with mysister. We did find a few things for the wedding, and I was happy to oblige with all my coupon apps. We did get distracted with regular shopping though. Can’t pass up thrifting for treasures. It brought back a lot of memories. Lori has always been the best shopping buddy.
We stopped in at a natural health food store and I snatched two of these coffee drinks for us. Wow. Talk about a energy boost. And hopefully a healthier one than just a shot of caffeine. I think it had green tea type effect. I felt better in the afternoon than I did all morning! We were tearing through stores. 🙂
After we got back from shopping, all my sisters headed over to my oldest sister’s house for the evening while their guys were at a baseball game. I’ll always remember that. We won’t talk about the conversation topics, but it was a great evening. We stayed out until 1 am. Imagine that. That was the same evening my little brother was at a fundraiser shoot. He felt pretty happy that he did the best out of his group. He got home late too because of a Cabela’s pit stop on the way home.
The start of a good day: kefir smoothie left. Lunch on the right. The feta cheese and guacamole add the perfect touch. My husband is proud that I started liking crumbled feta. Now he isn’t alone in his obsession. 🙂
On Sunday , I went to church with this big boy and his parents. I’ll never forget what he did when we walked in the church doors together. A woman he recognized was walking towards us with a smile when Kameron let go off his mom’s hand to motion towards me, “Hi, this is my friend Brenda!” I was completely melted.
You’ll understand when your four year old nephew introduces you to a new face at a church. He was so charming. I’ll never get over it. He’s even greeted people at his front door with, “Hi, my name is Kameron. Nice to meet you!” complete with a hand shake.
That Sunday was so special. It was my brother in law’s idea to invite me along with their little family for the day, and I loved it. We ate Mexican for lunch, then did a little shopping. I bought a kitchen trash can for my sister’s new house. Ever practical I know, but everyone needs a trash can. Ha.
We ended with frozen yogurt, which was enjoyed by all. Kameron walked up to the giant chalk board wall at Sweet Frog and started writing ABC’s for the first time.
And of course, no day is complete without a set of Kyler selfies. 🙂
The glorious sky on the way home
Back at Mom’s house letting the handsome shirtless wild child run off built up energy. He did so well in town, but it was hilarious watching him waddle and run around afterwards.
At some point in life, I got to go out for coffee and shopping with this beautiful girl. (Bathroom selfies of course) We had such a good time. I always love spending time with her no matter how long it’s been since the last time. Twila is such an incredible friend.
Helping my brother with his homework in the evening…
One evening was spent printing and assembling wedding programs. The finished product was so lovely.
I spent a day at my sister’s house with the boys. Di was working on some wedding signs, and we also snuck in a quick photoshoot of the boys in the woods. Kyler was teething pretty badly a lot of the time I was there, but we did get a few good ones. I got to give him a stroller ride that put him to sleep that evening.
When I got back to Mom’s house that evening I ended my day with this snuggle bug niece (Karissa) falling asleep like an angel beside me. Talk about precious.
I’ll end with this photo of Kyler screaming and running at the camera like a maniac. 😀