Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Final Thoughts Month of August: Blog 4- Letters from Mom & Mimi

Dear Ellie,

Last weekend, we went to the beach and stayed with our cousins (for a 4 day trip, the entire trunk of the car and beneath the car seats were full).  It was such a wonderful few days.  Your Daddy, you, Will, and I stayed with Amber, Brett, Colin, and Greyson.  And your Mimi and Poppy stayed with Jackie and Steve.

Final Thought: Continue family legacies and traditions. 

Steve and Poppy are 1st cousins but their relationship is much more than that.  They are best friends and so are the wives, Mimi and Jackie.  Since Uncle Ryan and I were small, we would go to New Jersey almost every summer and Steve, Jackie, Brett, and Craig would come to State College in the winter.  Now that us kids are grown, they do annual summer vacations together.  It’s quite a special bond that they have.  And I feel a close connection with Amber (Brett’s wife).  I hope that you and Will continue this bond with Amber and Brett’s boys and their wives one day.  

Not only was going to Cape May an amazing mini-vacation but also so was whom we spent it with.

As soon as we arrived at lunchtime on Friday, we dropped off our luggage, picked up sandwiches and headed to Stone Harbor.  Amber had the beach routine down to a science- she had a cart so that she could lug the sand toys, towels, chairs, and children from the car to the ocean.  Although, it did look like we were coming to move in!

We had a barbeque that first night at Amber and Brett’s house.  Amber invited her mom, sister Cindy, and niece Kendall too.  You already knew Cindy and Kendall because we pray for them each evening.  Kendall has a very rare and progressive disease called MLD.  

Sweet and beautiful Kendall is a living angel.  Cindy put her in a blue dress, which made her eyes sparkle.  To see Kendall smile, especially when her Mom would talk to her, lit up the room.  Kendall, only 3 years old, has touched so many people in her life including us.  I feel very blessed to know her and am thankful for social media so we can see Kendall daily.   

On Saturday, we went to the zoo.  Cape May has one of the coolest zoos (and it’s free) so we spent a whole morning there.  Most of the main path is on boards, which you and Colin pretended board monsters were lurking beneath so we weren’t allowed to step on the cracks (which is pretty hard to do with adult sized feet on 2x4’s!).  
Just outside of the entrance is a giant park, which is where you were begging to go the entire time!

That evening, we all went to the boardwalk.  You could go on so many kid rides now that you are officially over 36 inches (just by a hair though!).  

You were even brave enough to go through the Haunted House with Mimi!  For the adults, we ate the greasy and yummy food- ice cream, pizza, and fries (always the best on the boardwalk!). 

On our last day, we spent hours at the beach again.  I thought that you would have just stayed in the sand but you actually really liked the water.  You even tried boogie boarding and with your Dad’s help, you rode a couple of waves!  
You also found it very odd and then very cool that there was no bathroom on the beach.  It gave us many giggles!

You and Colin for the most part got along well.  My favorite was when you were trying to boss him around to play house.  You told him to be the dad and Will to be the dog!  Greyson and Colin were so kind to you and Will sharing their toys (even when Will tried to destroy the amazing castles that Colin made with legos).

The final night that we were there, Mimi, Poppy, Jackie, and Steve babysat the four of you children so that Brett, Amber, your Dad, and I could go out.  Brett and Amber took us to Atlantic City for a delicious dinner and some karaoke (and yes a little gambling).  
Despite not winning any money, we had a blast… so much so that we didn’t get home until 1am!  You kids were all fed, bathed, and sleeping when we walked in.  But we got to see your arts and craft projects drying on the counter- painted and decorated seashells… the perfect memento to take home and remind us of this trip.  

You already have yours proudly on display in your playroom (up high of course so Wreck-It-Will can’t reach it).

You said your favorite part of the whole trip was playing with your cousin Colin.  And when you got in the car for the long trek home, you said that you missed him already.  That melted my heart and I knew then that this legacy relationship that started generations before you will continue.

I love you Ellie,


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