Tag Archive for travel

Thanksgiving ’13

We celebrated another wonderful Thanksgiving down at OIB with my Mom & Dad & my Dad’s parents, Nana & Pawpaw. {We missed my brother & SIL in NY & my mom’s side in Charlotte!}

And their dog, Bocce was a huge hit with Zach & Lucy. Who needs toys when there’s a dog?! Even better that they’d just learned to say dog & woof woof & learned his name while we were there. Zach just followed him around & loved to pat him on the back & head. L liked to talk to him & look from afar & thought his fluffy tail was fun to pet. They were surprisingly gentle, & Bocce, who can be skiddish, did great putting up with them. I think Bocce’s a big fan of L & Z because he gets to do clean up floor duty after every meal & snack {bribery at it’s finest}.

Thursday morning, we made a chilly walk up for beach church on the sand. Rev John spoke quick because it was cold! Z ‘played’ with sand & had fun watching birds then got too cold even all bundled up. Lucy was snuggled into me & lasted in her owl fluffy hat & ruffle coat.

Thanksgiving was also my mom’s birthday! So we had birthday cake along with our Thanksgiving meal. :)

Dad enjoyed lots of books with L & Z including hallmark The Night Before Christmas which he recorded his voice reading. It’s so cool.

Thanksgiving Thursday

Friday & Saturday we shopped, ate & ate, played, L & Z had dance parties with Nana & their Cici.

Jason & I escaped for a day date to see Hunger Games Catching Fire & a quick Boj’s lunch. Our first movie since the weekend before I went on hospital bed rest.

Lucy & Zach took baths in Nana’s big garden tub. Zach loved it & I think he’s going to be our lil fish. Lucy liked a quick duck tub {within the tub} bath then to watch.

Saturday, OIB starts off the Christmas holiday with a bunch of events. L&Z were napping during parade time & we skipped the floatila bc it was dinner/bath/bedtime. But we made it to the fire station for cookies & meeting Santa. LOL. It didn’t go so well! Poor L was hating it!
Friday and Saturday Thanksgiving

Sunday, we went to my grandparents’ church {where we were married} & L & Z did great playing I the children’s room while we worshiped & listened to Nana in the choir. Afterwards we finally remembered to take a four generations photo!
Four Coggins generations

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend. Now onto Christmas holiday posts!

Summer Beach Reads

As I was working on our beach trip pack list, I went online & reserved some summer beach reads for myself. Yes, I was maybe a bit over confident that I’d have time to myself to read. But between car rides, marathon nursing sessions, & sneaking away time without babies on the beach, I managed to finish four books in the last two weeks. I shared my thoughts One Thousand White Women Monday.

IMG_20130707_145908Mary Kay Andrew’s Spring Fever was first. Spring Fever reminded me immediately of the other Mary Kay Andrews’ books I’ve loved. Her writing voice is exclusively her own. I was half way through when I realized the title doesn’t fit the book IMO. I’m not sure what I would’ve called it, but Spring Fever doesn’t exactly match.

The characters in this novel are southern charmers & I’m not saying this because they’re set in a {fictional I believe} NC town not far from where I live. The soda referenced so frequently throughout Spring Fever {Quixie} does remind me so much of Cheerwine which fellow NC’ers will know as a delicious cherry soda you probably grew up drinking.

Spring Fever tells the story of two friends & the brother/ex-husband they have in common. It weaves together friendship, family, employment & the history & love they all share with lots of laughs, drama & a lil romance thrown in for fun.

IMG_20130707_150043I’ve been excited about reading The Next Best Thing by Jennifer Weiner since I discovered & finished Swim {her short story prequel about the same characters}.

I really enjoyed this novel. The characters were fun & funny. I wanted to be friends with the main character, a struggling writer-turned TV show runner in LA, & her fabulous grandma.

Like other books by Jennifer, this was a great, light read. While it might be ‘chick lit’ & doesn’t have a super heavy subject, it was still good & kept me engaged until the very end. Actually after the end too as I was left hoping we’d get more of the story!

where we belongIn full disclosure, I read Emily Giffin’s Where We Belong exclusively once we were back from the beach. But I’m including it here because I group Emily with the other authors as perfect beach read novelists.

I laughed when I realized Where We Belong also featured a main character, Marian, who was a NYC based TV writer. That took a bit to keep Marian’s character straight from my last read.

But pretty quickly, I became engrossed with this story. The author chooses the write in two voices Marian & Kirby, the now 18 year old who Marian gave up for adoption at birth. I loved that we got both the adult & teenaged perspectives of all the action. I was cheering & wishing well for them both.

I loved the emphasis placed on fathers in Where We Belong. And I admit I was a bit swoony over Conrad.

While I told my mom I might not recommend these for a weighty book club discussion, they are perfect for deliciously light, fun summer reading. Anytime I’m looking for something I know I’ll enjoy without my brain exploding, these authors {& yes, these books} are good picks!

Beach Week

I’ve finally complied all my favorite photos from last week. Get ready for beach pics overload! A few are a little out of order as I made the collages by what was on my cell then ones from my SIL.

Zach slept most of the trip down Saturday. My view of the Atlantic from the back deck Saturday afternoon. Zach, J, Lucy & I at dinner Sunday night at River City Cafe.

Zach slept most of the trip down Saturday. My view of the Atlantic from the back deck Saturday afternoon. Zach, J, Lucy & I at dinner Sunday night at River City Cafe.

Lucy loved her cousins ~ especially Reid’s beard!

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Lucy & Reid Saturday night.

It rained every day we were in Surfside with my husband’s family. We tried to make the best of it though including playing in their tailgate style tent on the beach in the rain!

Sunday Zach touched the ocean for the first time. He wasn't a big fan. Lucy had a blast on her aunt Sissy's lap on our rainy beach morning.

Sunday Zach touched the ocean for the first time. He wasn’t a big fan. Lucy had a blast on her aunt Sissy’s lap on our rainy beach morning.

 

I escaped during afternoon naps &/or playtime with Dada & their Nana for some quiet beach reading. Thanks to Sara, I discovered side braids were Lucy-proof. Adventures in babies wrangling with Nana Monday night before dinner at Dead Dog Saloon!

I escaped during afternoon naps &/or playtime with Dada & their Nana for some quiet beach reading. Thanks to Sara, I discovered side braids were Lucy-proof. Adventures in babies wrangling with Nana Monday night before dinner at Dead Dog Saloon!

And when the sun did shine long enough to get us fed, bathing suited & sun screened, we hit the beach.

Monday morning naps with Nana then playing on the beach while we could.

Monday morning naps with Nana then playing on the beach while we could.

The babies enjoyed play time with their teenage/young adult cousins as well as dining out & eating off the kids’ menu! I had a great time soaking in the sun when I could, reading in the house while nursing/listening to the waves & playing Apples to Apples with everyone.

Tuesday was a rainy wash out ~ so we napped, ate, read & played instead.

Zach on Nana's lap on the porch Tuesday. Not sure when this photo of Felicity & Zach was taken but I love it.

Zach on Nana’s lap on the porch Tuesday.
Not sure when this photo of Felicity & Zach was taken but I love it.

A perfect day for Zach napping on the couch with his Papa & rocking with Dada. & for Lucy to nap on the deck {girl loved the ocean breezes!} with me.

A perfect day for Zach napping on the couch with his Papa & rocking with Dada. & for Lucy to nap on the deck {girl loved the ocean breezes!} with me.

Playing with their cousins Tuesday afternoon.

Playing with their cousins Tuesday afternoon.

We enjoyed a full day of sun on Wednesday & took advantage as best we could.

Beach day!

Beach day!

 

Wednesday we celebrated the almost 4th with a beach day then breaking out their chervon Lolly Wolly Doodle outfits for dinner at Inlet Crab House & a family photo.

Wednesday we celebrated the almost 4th with a beach day then breaking out their chervon Lolly Wolly Doodle outfits for dinner at Inlet Crab House & a family photo.

J wasn't feeling good after dinner, so I was grateful to their cousins for helping get Zach & Lucy ready for bed.

J wasn’t feeling good after dinner, so I was grateful to their cousins for helping get Zach & Lucy ready for bed.

We left Surfside during midmorning nap time & drove up to OIB where my parents & grandparents & the sunshine awaited us. We unpacked, ate lunch, sunscreened up & hit the beach!
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We had a happy July 4th beach afternoon complete with Lucy putting her feet in the ocean for the first time, Zach taking an epic nap on my Nana & Lucy playing her heart out in their baby pool.

Friday was a beautiful day, so we hit the beach early. Zach played in the sand & both played in the baby pool {no pics as I left my cell in the bag}. We went home in time for lunch & the babies napped with their Dada & Pops while Mom & I soaked in the afternoon sun.

I walked in the door around 415, grabbed Lucy & two steps later, she threw up & continued to do so for the next 45 mins til we got to a local after hours doctor. The cause- an epically bad ear infection without a fever but with puss drainage. A big, painful antibiotic shot & antinasuea shot later, she went to bed ok before waking up & proceeding to vomit every 1-2 hours throughout the night.

We made the decision in the wee morning hours to head home when she was stable with my parents following us home to help. We finally got her keeping down liquids {& thankfully making tears & drool & pee}.
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She slept almost the entire trip home. Slowly by Sun evening, she was up to normal amounts of milk & eating again too.

Husband told the doctor at her follow up appt Mon (still two ear infections & were doing a 10 day oral antibiotic) it was quite a hell of a week. And yes, we could have done without the rain, babies colds which they gave to his mom, most likely food poisoning for J & his Mom Wed night, & then Lucy’s ear infection/vomiting.

I’m much more of a look on the positive side person though, & I feel like there were many more fun times than bad ones. And in the future, I’m hoping we look back on the adverse moments with a laugh & focus more on the silly, unforgetable memories.

The babies & I loved spending time with his sister & her family. It was the first time for most of them meeting Lucy & Zach & it was so awesome to see 20+ year old guys rolling around with my littles.

Lucy & Zach light up at the sight of their Cici & Pops. Their relationships are so special to witness. We are lucky & blessed to have been able to get away for a week & see both families. And we are so blessed with our families & the help & love they generously provide to us & Lucy & Zach.

Happy {belated} Independence Day

Just getting back to reality after a week long beach vacation. {Did you catch my liberating working moms post on it?!}

I downloaded the photos from our dslr & realized these are all that are on there. I’ll update later this week with photos my sister-in-law took & ones from my cell.

Needless to say, we had a wonderful break from reality. It was a fabulous week full of family- both my ILs as well as my parents & grands.

As you might’ve seen from instagram/facebook, Lucy girl got sick Friday afternoon & we cut our trip a few hours short.

But Jason took these photos Thursday evening of me & my babies.

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Lucy & Momma OIB July 4th

Lucy & Momma 2

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July 4th OIB Zach, Lucy & Momma

July 4th OIB Zach, Lucy & Momma

Love the evening light! Love them! {posting from our new mini-laptop chrome book so excuse weird photo errors}

Enjoying Car Trips with Two

Car trips. They used to be three hours of husband & wife chatting in the front seat. Catching up after busy weeks. Or time spent napping or reading or playing online.

Now I tend to sit in the way back of the minivan while Jason drives. There’s little chatting between us as it’s hard to hear in the back with the AC on.

If the stars align & both Lucy & Zach sleep, I’m sometimes able to pull out my book or catch up on blogging.

But for all those times at least one if not both are up, here’s the few tricks up my sleeve.

Keep favorite toys close at hand. Bright lights & colors & music might seem annoying to parents at first, but its way better than hours of crying.

Books, books & more books. I read in silly voices & alternate which baby gets to help me hold. We bring board books & soft crinkly ones.

Extra bottles. If I think we’ll need them, I premix & keep them in a Packit cooler. We didn’t need them Monday, thanks to timing nursing & naps. But Friday night, hungry babies meant a McDonald’s stop for hot water to warm the bottles.

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Snacks! We have a boon snack ball {which is cute but spills out easily} & the Munchkin snack catchers. Before we take a trip, I fill up the snack containers with a mix of their favorites: Cheerios, yogurt melts, puffs & chews. It cracks me up to watch Lucy dig through & skip over the Cheerios for the melts.

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Monday, I introduced Zach {once he woke from a beautiful nap} & Lucy {my hungry nap fighter} to Sprout’s new toddler snacks. They loved the yogurt bites. The chews were a new texture they quickly warmed up to. I tried them both & thought they were delicious! I felt good giving them snacks I knew were organic as well as mostly fruit/veggies versus being just basic grains.

If all else fails, whip out your smart phone or tablet & pull up baby Einstein &/or the Chica show on YouTube. We might’ve watched 45 mins of Baby Einstein lullaby Friday night!

What are your best car trip tricks & tips?!

I was sent sample sizes of the new Sprout snacks for purpose of this review. I wasn’t otherwise compensated. My thoughts & opinions are genuinely my own.