Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Thanks, Irma

I always feel bad for liking hurricanes. Hurricanes happen at the beach. Hurricanes cause lots of trees to fall. Hurricanes give my family money. While we go to the beach.

This time it was a beauty named Irma. Irma pretty much wiped out Florida, but lucky me, our tree work was in my favorite place, Jacksonville. Daniel was there about a month before we came down, so the kids and I only got to be there a few weeks. We made the most of it, though. We got a coveted spot at Flamingo Lake Campground. What an awesome place that is!

I'll go ahead and get the beach pictures out of the way. We spent a lot of time there even though Flamingo Lake isn't near the beach. We went to Jax Beaches a few times, but our favorite is Mickler's Landing in Ponte Vedra. 

If you are ever in Jacksonville, you must visit Sweet by Holly. 30 flavors of cupcakes in mini sizes. Addicting...

We spent an exorbitant amount of money to go to Boo at the Zoo. I wasn't impressed.

We spent Halloween in Florida, and it was perfect. This was from the trick-or-treat night at the campground. So. Much. Candy. The big Florida-Georgia game was the next day in Jacksonville, and the campground was packed!!

Meme came down to visit while we were there. Her best friend Ricki lives there, and she is so sweet! Just the best hostess and a great friend. I've known her and her sons since I was born, and we had a little reunion. It was so good to see everyone! And could that backdrop be any prettier?!

On Halloween Day Meme, Ricki, the kids, and I went to St. Augustine. I wanted it to be a little field trip for Avery. We had a yummy seafood lunch then went into the heart of the city to walk down the main street full of shops. However, right when we got there some idiotic, ignorant, plenty more adjective/expletive college students were protesting a poor grandmother who works at a bakery on that street. She dressed like Aunt Jemima, black face and all, and these entitled, attention-seeking children thought this was a good opportunity to make it on the news.
I was beyond angry, and we just left. I don't even have words for this sad, Millennial generation. So my little field trip idea went bust. Oh well. St. Augustine is still beautiful.

We hit the jackpot when we decided to trick or treat in Ricki's neighborhood. There was not one crappy piece of candy to be found. It was all the good stuff. It was just a fun time all around.

We left Jacksonville a few days later. We went to Meme's for a few days, Fayetteville for a few days, Paducah for Thanksgiving, and now we are in Indiana again. So, in the month of November we have been in Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Illinois, and Indiana. Gypsy life is tiring.

December is Indiana is going to be awesome!

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name."      Psalm 100:4

Back in Indy

After spending a grueling 6 months in Paducah, we finally got to go back to Indianapolis. I dreamed of it for at least a year, and it was finally here! We stayed at a campground north of Indy in Noblesville. I would not recommend this place for long term living. It was rough. I'll just leave it at that.

Leaving Paducah (hallelujah!)

Living in a van down by the river.

One of our first days there Avery and I got out by ourselves. I had heard about this place. It's just like Steel City Pops. Delicious. We also went to Indy Reads and The Best Chocolate in Town for ridiculously expensive, but ridiculously yummy, truffles.

We had fun grilling out, building fires, and making s'mores.

I signed up for my first half marathon, the Indy Women's Half, at the end of September. Daniel was off on Sundays, so I did all my long runs on the Monon Trail. It's so pretty. I trained my little butt off, but on the day of the race I didn't have a babysitter. I was super bummed. I decided to run the 13.1 around the campground. Afterwards I got injured, and 2 months later I'm still not running. It's torture.

Fun downtown

 Avery got to run her very first race! It was a 1k to start off the football season. She got to run around Lucas Oil Stadium and end on the 50-yard line. I was so proud of her, and a little jealous!

We went to our favorite apple orchard, Tuttle Orchards, a couple times. We love that place! Our sweet neighbors, Addie and Easton, went with us one time. We really enjoyed playing, going on the hayride, and picking apples.

Avery got to run another race at a cool place! This was the Indy Mini-Mini at the Indianapolis Speedway. She actually got to run on the race track! It was so stinking hot, but she killed it! 2 medals under her belt!

It was unseasonably hot in September. We weren't able to find any swimming pools at the stores, but our neighbor found this slip-n-slide, and the kids had a blast! We never really got a real autumn while we were there.

The Indianapolis Children's Museum has a discount night once a month. The kids absolutely loved it! So many fun exhibits and hands-on things to do.

At the end of our time in Indy Meme and Jack came to visit. We went to Bloomington and South Bend, and showed them our favorite Indy spots. Jack had fun seeing all the colleges. It was also Jack's birthday, a perfect excuse for The Flying Cupcake! What a fun weekend we had exploring Indiana!

The weekend Meme and Jack were there Peyton Manning was being honored by the Colts. They put up this statue of him and retired his jersey. Excited I got to see it before we left.

Our very last night in Indy Daniel and I got to do something I will never forget. We got to see Garth Brooks in concert at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse. It was the most amazing show. To say we were in the nosebleeds is an understatement, but we could see him, and it was perfect. What an awesome way to end our exciting trip to Indy.

Four weeks before we left Daniel went to work in Jacksonville, Florida after Irma hit. The kids and I were in Indy by ourselves, but got to join Daniel mid-October. Another post on that fun...