Saturday, April 27, 2013

Charlotte Visit

After being home a week we decided we needed another getaway. The Fish's live in Charlotte which is just a 4 hour drive. The girls did great. I always feel like such a family on road trips. Reminds me of my childhood.
Scott and Ryan ran a half marathon first thing. Ryan loves having a buddy to do these things with. His knee is still bad but he will push it for races like this. 
After the race, one of our first stops after lunch was this cute French Bakery. Yummy macaroons. The girls were in heaven with all the choices. 
The streets were so charming. This was my favorite right by Myer's Park. The homes were gorgeous. Kirby's dream street. Charlotte was way more charming than Atlanta. Smaller city and much cleaner.
Playing on the train at the park.
Not sure how Scott fit on that seat.

Love it when she let's me hold her hand since it rarely happens.
Waiting for a blue snow cone at the lemonade stand. Not that hot, but if their is anything blue being sold-Ryan cannot pass it up.
Sneaking up on the ducks and throwing rocks-she could have spent all day there.
Love this girl so much-we get to see each other more than our own families. Lucky to have a friend like her.
Kirby had said it was busier than normal at the park and said she saw something about a tree climbing competition and we all thought she was crazy. Until we finally saw it. Not really tree climbing more of pulling yourself up a rope to ring and bell and lower yourself back down. But it was no joke for these tree-climbers. But they got our attention.
Loved this park-so much like Piedmont in Atlanta or Central in NY. And the fact that it was warm and starting to get green-even better!
We also got to walk around the city and have more Macaroons and then check out their awesome children's museum. Reagan loved this suction tube. Sticking the paper in over and over and watching it fly out-wishing it were real money!
Dancing in the "rave" room-not what it is actually called.
Interested in touching the cockroach...
And then couldn't believe she just did that! Hilarious and then she kept doing it-and always the same reaction.
She was like this all day-couldn't believe all this cool stuff in one place!
Then we had a nice backyard BBQ and ice cream cones to get all sticky before we got back in the car. We had a quick visit but we definitely had good quality time. So fun being with good friends. Lucky for us the boys planned another race so they will be back down in a couple weeks!

Friday, April 26, 2013


Got in the night before Easter to Sacramento and Ryan had to go home to work. It was perfect to have stuff to give the girls from our trip in Easter baskets. They were thrilled but I think I was more thrilled to be back with them. I could stop taking pictures of them for a good 3 days. Hence the overload here and this is only half of them.
Camryn was so excited for me to be back and wouldn't leave my side-at least until the cousins were around.
Reagan on the other hand was a little confused. She was happy I was there but was sure my mom was her mom. 
Exhibit A : My mom got up to go to the bathroom and she had a meltdown and then crawled over to her Uncle Mike to calm her down and I was siting right there. But it was cute because even when my mom came back she still let Mike hold her and was about to fall asleep. Most moms would be heart broken but I was just so happy to see that she had built a relationship with someone besides me and Ryan. And I knew as soon as we went home it would be back to how she always was. I loved the bond that she and my mom had and hope that never changes.
My beautiful Easter girls. Grandma Brenda sent these and I love how they went together but didn't match.
Emma and Owen were the best cousins to my girls-they all had so much fun together. And I love that both my sister and I had one dark and one light. The two together look more like siblings to me.
After church is was hunt time with all the cousins that live in Sacramento. Again-obsessed with this baby-not so baby of mine.
 And she loved the hunt and then died when the cousins showed her candy was inside.

The Atherly, Smart, Motley Crew-look at all those personalities.

 Besties these two! Last visit we thought for sure they would only be frienemies but they both turned 4 and are now so good to each other. I have a feeling they will always be close.
  My handsome dad-loved this picture I captured.
 Me and my sis. Love this girl and think about her daily. Hate that we aren't city neighbors anymore. We had so much fun chatting, buying shoes and doing hair together. What sisters are all about.
The next day we did Fairytale Town and Funderland. Reagan's bunny sniffs with her lips-does it get cuter? See I told you I missed them.
Most kids you have to tell them to stick their heads threw for a picture. Not this one. Found this on her own and kept sticking her head through all of them. This was about the 3rd time she had ran away to do it and finally had my camera on me.
Onto the rides. This girl is obsessed with any ride and then throws the biggest tantrum once they are over. Story of any 18 month old I guess.
And the real princess and her horse. Such an imagination on this one.
So grateful the girls were old enough to ride alone! They loved feeling like such big girls and I didn't have to take one for the team.

 And the boys were pretty stoked too.
Prettiest girl-and they had just as much fun doing this and not having to spend a million dollars at Disneyland.
 So happy...
 to tanturm.
Mom, Amy and I-got to have Costa Vida sans children courtesy of my dad. As close to Cafe Rio as I was going to get and I loved my time with the just us girls.
Later that night we had dessert at the Wilkes-second family to me and got to see David and Vanessa who were in town! Reagan again not needing me-went and sat with my dad and actually ate "good" for the first time in 2 weeks, such a sweet moment.
As was this one. At home the girls and I lay in bed while I "wake up" and they were so giddy to have me back to do this again. They were so cuddly and I can't believe I captured this one-hand on the face and all.
Camryn while we were gone became very brave with horses. Petting and feeding them. Such a cute brave little girl now! Glad my dad was able to help her overcome her fears. Now she is ready to ride one. Or so she says.

Owen and Reagan-such a cute little relationship. Owen is so good to her and loves playing. They played together like this for at least an hour. Both Camryn and Reagan are obsessed with Owey boy! So hard to leave and I have to say I wasn't quite ready. 
But this guy was so happy to be reunited with his girls. And I think they weren't mad about it either. Love these pictures so much! 
Good to be home but it is easy knowing I have another trip to Sacramento come July!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Hong Kong Part 2

After getting back to HK we had one day to try and fit in a few things. 
A day there wouldn't be complete without a "Smart walk/hike"-this was their Bowen Road that is one of the only street that is for walking that is flat and about a 5K. I loved how clean this park was. 
Afterward we walked down to the free zoo and botanical gardens. These were prettiest flowers and I also just love this picture of Brenda. We also found the most amazing chocolate croissants-best I've had at the market across the street.
The monkeys were going crazy and that huge nasty thing is a enormous Orangutan. So fun to have a nice city zoo that is free. 

Then we took a little 30 min boat ride to Cheung Chau. I little island off of HK with again no cars. Boats and bike is how they do things. Small little markets and restaurants are the main attractions. 
We ate at a little Thai place but everyone else was loving this Chinese Seafood place-we weren't feeling up to being adventurous. 

We explored the rest of the island-saw one of the Temples-Jake photo bombing.

And hiked around the island on the "Mini Great Wall"-trying to climb in between two rocks is harder than you think.

A lot of people come over for the nice beach too. Really pretty but no where here has waves. Which I like.
Then we rushed back in time to meet some friends of the Smart's that are our age for some bowling. Not time to change-so we look real good. We played at their other club by David's work. All so fancy. It was fun getting to know the Rowland's and all the friends we had in common.
The next morning we were all packed up and headed out to the airport when we realized it said PM not AM. So we had a whole other day to play! 
We pretty much walked the entire city of HK and got our delicious croissants again and did some shopping. Since I had room left in my suitcase it was only necessary.
We even got in another foot massage. Vacation can really be so stressful. Why don't they do these in the states. 45 minutes for $15. I would do them weekly and that is exactly what Brenda does. 
Boys wanted noodles and I was over them-so Brenda and I devoured burgers instead. I love BK and McDonalds outside the states-something so good and comforting about it.
Then when it was finally the right time to go to the airport that night Ryan got his last meal of noodles before heading home. "Beef Noodles" was the running joke because he search for them at every restaurant-so he was so happy to get a good dish at the airport. We had such an amazing vacation. It was so good to be with Ryan's parents and his brother and see where they are and what their life is like. So hard to feel connected when we are so far away and this exactly what we needed to feel connected again. We miss them but cannot wait for another trip back in a couple years as they will probably be there another 4-8 years. And huge thanks to my family, especially my mom and dad who were able to watch the kids. I think they all had just as much fun as we did.