Friday, April 26, 2013

Final Days in Boston

Friday was a day we'd never thought we'd see or experience first hand.  The entire city of Boston went on lock-down (all forms of transportation were shutdown) and no one was to leave their shelter because the bombers were identified and had been discovered in the MIT area. I was shocked by the news and a little disappointed that I wouldn't get to see more of the city, but to be honest, it was one of the most relaxing days I've had in forever! Jason went to his meetings as usual, while I basically stayed in the room the entire day watching every newscast I could find.  I surfed channels looking for the most up-to- date info.  EVERY station was covering the manhunt.  This day of lock-down actually turned out to be perfect and needed (after being in and out of naps and ordering room service) :) That evening the shelter in place was lifted and we moseyed out into the city to find some grub. Unfortunately, nearly everything was closed, but we found some Italian restaurants open in the North end. Woo hoo! Can't keep an Italian down! We ate at Giacomo's with about 20 others MAX packed into about a 15 x 15 room (we could barely get to our table). Let's just was quite personal!  We LOVED our cute little waitress, Rosemarie. She was hilarious. After filling our bellies with some amazing pasta and calamari, we realized they were cash only (the host said to Jason..."Hey Booosss, it's caaash only Haire"-in the best Boston accent you can imagine.  Needless to say, we repeated his phrase the REST of the week!). Not good when you are $20 shy of what you need (and we didn't have our debit card), kinda puts you into a scramble! Jason immediately took off out the door trying to find a solution. Thankfully, after being gone for 20 minutes, he came back with cash in hand (whew!!!). Good thing, I was getting some nasty looks my way for holding a table for that long. The line was all the way down the street and it was nearly 9:30. I felt horrible, but we had no choice other than washing dishes!
This was the entire size of the restaurant
After leaving, we headed to Mike's Pastry (a famous Italian pastry shop that we had tried to go to 2 years ago with the Ogburns, but gave up when the line was wrapped around and down the street!). We got in because not many other Bostonians were searching out food at that hour after the previous events that occurred.
Don't mind that he's stuffing his face with the best canoli ever!
Our final day in Boston we walked through the Boston Commons, took the trolley to all the historical places, watched the Red Sox and Bruins play in one of the most famous local pubs, took a boat ride around the wharf, and shopped on Washington Avenue.
This sweet man told us about some of the 9/11 victims that were on this memorial.  He has researched their lives and tried to learn their stories.  We thought it was so touching that he knew so many of them. 
Our pub stop for the games
Our boat ride around the wharf
After all that, we had dinner at the Red Lantern (an amazing Asian Fusion restaurant) not far from our hotel.  Their crunchy roll was unbelievable and their Lobster wontons were amazing too. Can you tell we're foodies?! YUM.   
Our Boston trip had to end some time.  We loved the city, enjoyed our uninterrupted time together, but missed the girls terribly.  We trekked home with a cooler full of milk for Charli, a crazy stuffed monkey for both of them, and almost another lady's luggage (thank goodness for cell phones!).  We're home in one piece.  Thank you, Lord!!!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Boston Strong....continued.

The next day, Jason had meetings so I walked the streets of Boston (let me remind you again...police were EVERYWHERE) and I nearly walked every street in the Boston area! My first stop was the marathon memorial at the exact moment when a man was placing the three white wooden crosses that you now see in just about every memorial picture on the news. It was such a humbling moment. To make this moment even more touching I could hear bells from a neighboring church playing "God Bless America". I was literally in tears as I mourned the victims, as well as, thanked The Lord for reminding me that every day is a gift from Him.  Thank you Lord.
The rest of the day seemed pretty insignificant in comparison. However, I did refresh some of my history facts and made a few stops into some of my favorite little shops in Beantown before heading back for dinner with the hubs.
Quincy Market eating lunch (did you know that Quincy Market is visited more than Disney World in a year's time?!! Just wanted to share that new factoid I learned.)
Next, on to the Chart House that evening (one of the best meals I've had). The lobster bisque was amazing! And guess who's prime rib that is....that's right.  Mine!  The hubs ate fish and it paled in size compared to my ginormous plate of food. Ha!

The trees at Faneuil Hall
After dinner, we walked along the wharf, around Faneuil Hall, and then along some of the freedom trail in the downtown area. We indulged in some Pinkberry and then headed in for the night around 11:30. When we returned to our room, the news was broadcasting a shooting of an MIT police officer with 2 accomplices (at this point, we didn't realize the two were connected to the bombings).  We had no idea what the next day would bring.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Boston Strong

We had an extraordinary trip to Boston this week. I know that phrase seems strange to most after the tragic events that recently took place, but it was just that....extraordinary. We've had the privilege of traveling to Boston 2 years ago with our friends, Alex and Meredith. Details of that trip can be found HERE. This year on Tuesday, we had to make an important decision to either, leave for Boston under the recent circumstances or stay home safely with our babies. Most people reading this would be thinking, these people are crazy if they even THOUGHT about going! Well, that's the funny part...we thought about it AND we went. And you can call us crazy. We know already.
The reason for going to Boston was primarily for Jason to attend his annual conference for work. We actually thought that the conference would be canceled, but they assured us Tuesday morning that the conference was still a-go and they were taking every precaution to keep us safe in Boston (including asking the FBI and other city law enforcement if they needed to cancel). So we went! This is the point where my friend, Sheri says (because she actually did)....this DOES NOT surprise me! You have always been the girl that is driving in the same vicinity as the oncoming tornado, walking down the same street as the neighborhood creepster, or going to the beach after an oil spill. She's right, I do constantly find myself in these situations! Here's how I look at it, God does NOT want us to live in a state of fear, so this is my opportunity to fully trust Him, because LORD KNOWS there are a number of other things that can sometimes cripple me with fear.
Our flight there was pretty typical for us...I received a full fledge pat down, my breast pump was confiscated for about 30 minutes because of my "mysterious" gel pack inside of it, our flight was delayed in the air because of an "emergency" on a plane in Philly, and Jason lost the credit card. Sounds fun, huh?! Not exactly. :)
When we arrived in Boston the amount of law enforcement there was unbelievable. When I say this, I'm not over exaggerating in the least bit....there was a police man, swat team member or FBI agent (most of the time 2) with their hummers on every street corner. No lie. We were FULLY protected. Like one SWAT team person said "you're in the safest city in the U.S., ma'am" and we believed it! It was like NOTHING we had EVER seen before!!
This was what we saw coming and going to our Marriott hotel
This was our view for almost every street. (Bolyston). You can see the Lord and Taylor building that caught the bombers on tape.
After arriving, we showered, rested, and caught up on some of the Boston news. We had dinner plans that evening with a company Jason has been researching with the possibility in the future of using their services at the surgery center, so dinner that night was free at Turner Fisheries (bonus!). The clam chowdah and the sweet potato pecan pie with gelato were our favorite dishes that evening. It was nice to meet and mingle with some people and see the city at night.  What a sight....even with all the commotions going on.

Days 2-4 coming soon!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Purple hair!

My cousin, Danielle does my hair and any time I go without Ansley in tow, I get in trouble.  Danielle is usually upset I didn't bring her and Ansley is upset I didn't take her to see Dani.  I'm just in trouble with everyone!  So this time, I decided to take Ansley out of school a little early and take her along.  Danielle was so excited to put purple in Ansley's hair and Ansley was thrilled to get the royal treatment.  I figured since she won't be getting her hair cut anytime soon, I would let her have a little pampering.
Miss A getting her hair purplicious!  
She put foil around it and everything.  She thought she was so BIG!
Then to the dryer with Momma.
She was a little short for the sink :)
But she thought it was so neat. 
After the 15 minute process she wanted to snuggle with Bea and head to gymnastics with her new do.  She wanted to show all her little friends her purple streak!
She enjoyed her pampering and can't wait for our next trip back.  Mommy can't either. :)

Friday, April 12, 2013

Easter Weekend and More!

Easter Sunday was such a great day.  It was beautiful here and an absolutely perfect day to celebrate our risen Lord!  After church we spent the afternoon at the cabin (thankfully, we spent Saturday night with Jason's fam, so we only had one place to rush off to) and Ansley played HARD all day outside while we relaxed and watched the basketball games inside.  She got to bring her new kitten, Piper, so of course, she had to show her all the exciting things at the cabin.  :)      
Ryan, Whit, and Brynn
Messy Morning was at the Show-Me-Center this past Saturday, so we went for a little bit with the girls. There was lots to do, but for whatever reason, Ansley was more excited about the turtle and the police car.  
She waited for quite a while to sit in there!
Charli just kind of took it all in for most of the day (the little thing is usually pretty laid back).  Afterwards, we picnicked with our favorite Chicfila lunch on the grass at the Surgery Center and then Jason cleaned up some branches around the office.  It was a pretty spontaneous decision to picnic....evidently they were calling for 50 mph winds, because it was nearly impossible to eat without your hair getting in your mouth or our food blowing over into the grass.  Ha!  But the girls had fun and it was a nice change of pace, so that's all that matters:)         
Loving this Spring weather!

Friday, April 5, 2013


Our lives are busy, yet full of simple moments.  Thought I'd share a few random ones from recent days.
Charli and Daddy watching Alleigh on the deck
Ansley rockin' Daddy's boots
Charli at her 9 month appointment AFTER the shots
Our first Simply Swirled experience.  LOVE!
Charli getting sized up by Redbird
Ansley playing with her princesses in the middle of an auction
This is how I found Ansley during naptime.  Her window seat was more comfy apparently.
Snuggle time with the girls

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

GG time

I haven't even mentioned what Ansley's been doing on Wednesday mornings!  This girl has been hanging out at GG's cottage (an assisted living facility) for weeks and loving every second of it!  It all started with me missing the cutoff to sign the kiddos up for childcare at the church so I could do Beth Moore's, Daniel bible study.  Thankfully, Jason's grandma, offered to keep Ansley while I went. was such a hit.  Ansley enjoyed her time with GG and all the residents so much that she was BEGGING to go back (GG was pretty excited to spend time with Ansley too).  It has been such a great experience for her.  She LOVES to serve the residents their food, entertains them, and gets to spend some quality time with GG all the while.  Also, while she's there, she gets her nails polished, they play babies with her (they even get down on the floor with her, believe it or not), and she even dances with some of them during the live music that they have every month.  I's really unbelievable how much she loves it.  The life lessons and the bond that she's establishing with her GG and the other residents nearly brings me to tears.            
This is Ansley and Miss Megan.  She's a gem and she spoils her rotten!
Ansley and GG having a moment

On Wednesday, Megan put together an Easter egg hunt for the kiddos, so of course we HAD to go! The residents had filled 100's of eggs so that the hunt could take place and the kids really enjoyed it.
Ansley's first egg.  She especially loved the stickers that they had placed on the outside of each one (get this girl a sticker and she's happy!).  
Brooks, Paisley, Trevor and Abby joined in too
Charli hung out with GG
Here's Brynn, Ansley, and Charli with GG after the big hunt
I love that the girls get to spend this time with GG and all of her friends.  It's such a blessing to have our grandma's still living and hope that we have many more years to come with them.