Monday, September 22, 2014

Sum-sum-summa Time, Summatime Travels

So, Tanner coaches a local Babe Ruth baseball team - and was then asked to coach the Babe Ruth All-Star team. He handpicked a (legit) team, and the ended up winning the state tournament. This resulted in a road trip to Richmond, VA.

The State Champs!

In typical Collins planning... we decided to leave town at 9:00 pm Monday night, drive through the night to Richmond...stay there until Saturday...leave at 6:00 pm and drive straight to Cape San Blas, FL for our annual week at the beach for family vacation.

With a 3 year old. (And the assistant coach. And one of the players.)

Needless to say, we were skeptical. Turns out, driving through the night is the way to go. (Not to mention we rented a minivan with a DVD player. I am embarrassed to say that I actually liked the minivan. Let's not go crazy and think I will ever purchase one... But the doors that open automagically and all the room... It was tempting.) Fisher watched movies and slept through the night both ways. It was such a pleasant 11 hour drive - if that is possible.

Tanner's team made it to playoffs in the regional tournament, but with a heartbreaking loss, came in 3rd place. (They were headed to the World Series should they have won.) But, it was such a great trip. We have family in Richmond that we obviously don't see very much, and loved spending some time with them.

 
Representing Florida well.

We made it back to town about 6:00 am Sunday morning, stopped to pick up my mom and return the beloved minivan, and headed to the beach for a wonderful week of family, relaxing, fishing, scalloping, and beaching.

Tired boys.
Best location for a morning run. Ever.
 

2 weeks from our original departure, we made it back to Bear Creek. We have never been so happy to go home! ...And I think the same goes for the dogs!


Now... Time to settle in for the Sunday of Summer (August), and anxiously await our most favorite time of year..... FALL!

(We squeezed in a little in town fun pre-roadtrip marathon.....)

Painting with Henry.
Vacation Bible School!
Movie date with Jayden!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Boat Days of Summer... and Water Days Too

Tanner and I bought a boat last year, and have really enjoyed our first full summer using it. To say Fisher loves it would be a gross understatement. He LOVESSSSS it! Such a water baby... Loves to fish... Fits right in.

 

We have also spend an enormous amount of time in various water locations this summer... Be it the ocean, a pool, a splash pad, or a random blow up pool... We are there!

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Fisher and Sammy are besties!
He might not look thrilled about it, but he graduated swim school!
Showing Sofie the ropes at the Splash Pad.
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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

TeeBall Season Wrap Up

Fisher's first season of teeball was a smashing success. He is naturally a very sweet, very shy little boy. The change in him from the start of the season to the end was amazing. He has started learning what it is to be a team, how to interact (and share) with others, how to take turns... the list goes on. He really started to come out of his shell, and we are so pleased with this direction!

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His very last run home : )

 
 

His last game happened to be on my birthday, so later that evening we went to The Melting Pot to celebrate...both my birthday and his season! He was so proud of his medal, he decided he should wear it to dinner. (And obviously we agreed!) 

 

NOW! Time to gear up for SOCCER SEASON! (How fun will it be to see a bunch of 4 year olds running wild on a field chasing a ball?!)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

New York, New York, New York

So, I had to visit NYC for work (tough life), and on a last minute whim, my mom decided to join me. We haven't been to NYC together in almost 10 years, so we were very excited to explore the city and have some one on one time together - sans babies! Our hotel was in a great Midtown location, so we were able to walk almost everywhere we wanted to go.

(Obviously) I watched Serendipity on my flight there, so I could arrive with the hopes and dreams of all NYC has to offer. My mom has never eaten at the actual restaurant, so that was a first stop. (Amazing)


Then we took the Staten Island Ferry for a spin... My mom read this was the best free way to see the Statue of Liberty, and it honestly was! I have been to NYC a few times and never gone to see it - so this trip was a must - and totally worth it.


When we got back from our boat tour, we went to the Financial District pay our respects and honor the memory of those lost on 9/11. The statue of "Double Check", also know as "the Survivor", faces the site of the attacks, and if you Google it you will see that the statue was the only thing standing in the midst of destruction. Then the office building nearby is still completely covered in smoke damage. Erie feeling on those grounds.

 

We also took a stroll down Wall Street. The entire time, all I could think about was the movie The Wolf on Wall Street..... I was sure every man I passed was up to something (illegal).


That evening for dinner, we paid a visit to the iconic Carnegie's Deli. We split one of their sandwiches and a side of onion rings - and didn't even eat half of the half. HUGE. Then of course, we had to get a slice of their world famous cheesecake!


One of my meetings was at the Estee Lauder headquarters, and I have to say, provided the best view of NYC and Central Park. Such a beautiful city.


Really not sure how mom and I never managed to take a picture together, but I will chalk it up to the fact that we were having such a great time exploring that we just rarely thought to stop and document.

We went to the Toy's R Us in Times Square and I bought Fisher all 4 Ninja Turtles, which is apparently the thing right now for 3 and 4 year olds. Mom and I did a little shopping, and a lot of walking. (a LOT of walking) It was such a great few days, and now I am ready to go back again!

Oh, and of course, on the way home.... watched When Harry Met Sally. Like any respectable NYC tourist would do.

Success.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Viva Las Vegas

So. Las Vegas was not only on the list of places I never thought about going to, but it was actually on my list of places I never wanted to go to. (Yes. I watch way too much CSI Las Vegas. I know what happens there.) (And also how to solve the case.)

But lo and behold, I had to go there for a work trip. (I travel a lot for my job. And I realize having to go to Las Vegas is nothing to complain about.) With Las Vegas being on Tanner's "I have to go there" list, he immediately made plans to join me. This obviously made me way more excited to go... I LOVE traveling with him.

So plans were made, and we were off.

First stop upon arrival.... In n Out Burger. It is one of those places you always hear about, so obvi you have to give it a try. I would say prices are comparable to McDonald's, but the food is way better. But at the end of the day, its totally just a fast food burger. And it was worth it! Especially given the fact that as we ate, we realized it was the equivalent of eating a hamburger and french fries at midnight back home. (Super healthy.)


Then we made our way to The Venetian where we were staying. I LOVED our hotel. Right in the middle of everything, had shopping and restaurants (including Carlos' Bakery.. from the Cake Boss.. which was awesome), amazing decor, 2 casinos in house, and the really cool wax museum of celebrities.


We made a trip to the Hoover Dam and made countless references regarding dam bait and dam tours. (Which they clearly hear 268431 times a day, because they did not find it nearly as funny as we did.) The Hoover Dam is quite amazing for modern day, but even more amazing when you think about how long ago it was constructed and what materials they must have been working with.

See that bridge? We climbed to it and walked across it.
Nevada/Arizona border.
View from said bridge that we climbed to.

We also walked the strip and went into all the major casinos (Harrah's, Bellagio, Ceasar's Palace...), we watched the Bellagio fountain show (loved it), accidentally found (scary) Old Las Vegas and saw the Little White Chapel.

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This isn't the real Caesar's Palace is it? I didn't think so.
Ole Dolly was our lucky machine for this trip!

To end the trip, we stopped at the Welcome to Las Vegas sign for the obligatory picture.


For someone who never wanted to go to Vegas, I have to say, I would actually love to go back. We had such a great time, and it was so nice to be able to get away... just the 2 of us. (Although we referenced Fisher 500 times a day and FaceTimed him at every opportunity..... : )