Monday, October 22, 2012

Visiting family

Last week was the boys Fall Break from school. We decided to head up north to Virginia and Delaware for the week, and I am so glad we did. We had a marvelous time.

We headed out Tuesday around noon and made our 9 hour drive to Williamsburg. After sleeping that night, the boys and I headed up to New Castle, DE where Steve's sister Kristin lives. Steve wanted to spend some one on one time with his Dad so this gave the rest of us a perfect opportunity to visit cousins.

We drove the additional 4 hours through D.C., and Maryland, and into Delaware. I really enjoyed the drive. You get through the craziness of the city and then you are in beautiful country. And we really loved the cooler weather when we got to Delaware.

The first day we were there, we went to Pennsylvania to the Herr's chip factory. It was a perfect outing for 8 kids. We even got to taste chips hot right off the belt. It was so much fun.

 [A baby just enjoying some chips]

The next day we had planned to go to an apple orchard and pumpkin patch, but the rain made it impossible so we found ourselves at chuck e cheese instead. Another great place to go with lots of kids. Especially on a Friday at noon. Everyone else was in school!

After we were done playing on Friday, we headed back to Williamsburg to rejoin Steve. On our way up north we drove through a tunnel that took us under the water. On our way back we took a different road and went on a huge bridge to get across the water. Both were really cool to see.

On Saturday we spent some time with Nana and Papa and then we got to go to their trunk or treat. We weren't aware of this trunk or treat when we were packing, so we didn't bring any costumes with us. These are the ones we came up with after a trip to the dollar store.

[cousin Daniel as Incredible Hulk with Nathan bothering him as usual.]
 [Steven with his $1 mask on]
 [Nathan found a sheet to be a ghost]
 [Brandon as a camouflage guy with some dollar store face paint]
[Here is our little skeleton after dessert]
[Jacob was a pirate for the evening and he has had a sucker in his mouth ever since that night.]
Also at the trunk or treat,  Steve won 2nd place in their chili contest. Yahoo! Go Steve.

The next day we went to sacrament meeting and heard some wonderful talks and then we were on our way home. It was a wonderful week.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Remember Alexander?


So, Laura (my sister) made a comment on a picture of Alex saying he is not the baby she remembers from the last time she saw him. At that point it dawned on me that I haven't been sharing Alex's abilities. He is definitely not a baby anymore. He has got a great vocabulary and I have decided he is going to have Steven's intelligence and Jacob's short height genes. Enjoy his video (and ignore the cluttered desk).

                             video

Our anniversay trip



So..... you are wondering what is happening with the Hughes family huh? Sorry about that.

I am going to pick back up with a wonderful weekend get away that Steve and I took. Our 12 year anniversary was on September 1st of this year. I really wanted to go away for the weekend just the two of us and it wasn't until later in the month that we were able to do that, but WE DID!

I have a wonderfully marvelous women in my ward who said she would be totally comfortable taking care of all of my boys for the weekend. She adores Alexander, so that helps a lot. She also has twin ten year old boys of her own. So she was alone responsible for seven boys for the weekend. She is amazing and they had a smooth and wonderful weekend by the way.

So, with the boys in good hands, Steve and I left for Atalanta at noon on Friday. We made it to a nice hotel and checked in and changed clothes to head over to the Atlanta temple. We had a wonderful time doing temple ordinances and loved being there together. 

Afterwards we headed to The Cheesecake Factory for dinner. I have only been once before and it was a delicious dinner. It was a nice evening to not have to rush back home or make sure the boys were going to bed for the babysitter.

The next day we slept-in, had a great breakfast, checked out and headed to the neatest little place in GA. There is a town here called Helen. They have turned it into a German town, complete with great German food, nice German shops, and German words used everywhere. I absolutely LOVED it. When we got there we went on a fun little trip tubing down the Chattahoochee River. I wasn't sure quite what to expect but it turned out to be so hilarious. The river was quite low but they were still happy to give us a tube and send us down this rock filled river. We kept getting stuck on the rocks and losing control and the greatest thing about that is there are people watching the river our whole way down. It was great.

{This is a picture I found on-line since we didn't have our camera of course. I remember passing this restaurant on our way down the river and people just watch the people tubing while they have dinner. So funny. And boy do I wish we had had our camera because those would have been some great pics!}
                               
When we were done there, we headed to look at the shops around Helen. They did such a good job of making it look and feel like Germany. We didn't buy much but thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Then we were off to dinner and had a delicious German meal that took us back to our life in Germany.



When we were done with Helen, it was time to find ourselves a campsite. I had looked at campsites a million times in the weeks leading up to our trip and the place I decided I wanted to go didn't accept reservations for camping. Well, I didn't feel like we needed a reservation because who was going to be camping on Sept. 21st? Well apparently lots of people because we were barely able to get a campsite and we found it right as the sun went down. Where the miracle comes in here is that we were just two adults camping. It took us all of 5 minutes to put up our little tent and we were done! It was fantastic. We then headed off to the store to buy stuff for breakfast.

{Finishing up last nights cheesecake while we waited for the fire to heat up.}


It was such a nice night for camping. It was still quite hot in Brooklet, and we had gone up in elevation a bit and we were able to snuggle up in our sleeping bags in the cooler weather. I LOVED it. The next morning we made a fire and had eggs in a frame before we took down camp and headed out for a hike. The hike was a quick mile up and mile back. It was a nice hike but the "top" was anti climactic. Not much to see. But it was a good work-out and great weather.


After that it was time to head our five hours back home to relieve Stacey. We made it by 4pm to all smiles. They all said it was a great weekend and she even asked when we plan on going again!! The perfect thing to say.