"I'm on a boat"

Slacker--I cannot believe I have not posted since May 13th! It has been crazy busy around here but I have to take a sec to relive the weekend I just had so that it doesn't turn into a dream.
Because that is what I thought Monday morning when I woke up, "was that all a dream?" Because as the reality of Monday sucker punched me with all its deadlines and laundry and phone calls to return and refridgerators to be filled and a baby completely off schedule, the only proof I had of my weekend was some pictures and bruises up and down my arm. Because that's all I could do all weekend was pinch myself saying "you're here, this is actually happening."

About three weeks ago, I received this invite in the mail from my college friend, Catherine Anne, inviting Bert and me to Miami for her 30th birthday weekend. I looked over the cutest invitation I have ever seen and texted her that I would try to figure out a way to make it but that it may not be in the cards for me. She texted back, "we've got your plane ticket and hotel room--you have to come!" Now this is a friend who is there for everything! We moved to Atlanta together after college, went through all the "oh no, I'm a grown up" stuff together, and met our husbands around the same time. Not only that, she came to my wedding that was two days before Christmas and her baby was only 6 weeks old--That is a GOOD friend! 
Once we figured out that my parents were moving and my in laws couldn't keep Loulie, my sweet husband sent me without him saying to go and have fun! No trouble fulfilling that command :)
They put us up here. Seriously, I could have stayed at the Holiday Inn and been happy being able to sleep in and take long showers without interruption but our hotel was amazing! All I know, is that it is Gwyneth's favorite and she could recommend toilet paper and I would totally go out and buy it--I think she is awesome! So staying where GP prefers pretty much made my year.
At the SoHo Beach House with the birthday girl!
Friday night they had a birthday party at the SoHo Beach House. I'm not sure if it was the endless glasses of champagne, the lobster, the fabulous reggae band or the company of great friends but I could have stayed all night. After taking a not so planned tour through the old hotel (my favorite was the bar covered in white Christmas lights--if I could just get my backyard to look like that), we headed over to what we thought would be just a regular bar. 
Wrong! If you know Catherine Anne and Patrick, they never do anything half-hearted. The thing about this entire weekend is that it was supposed to be for Catherine Anne, except she just kept asking us if we were having fun and wanting us to enjoy Miami. So instead of hitting up the hotel bar (which was still out of this world), Patrick sent us on a detour into LIV. Now I haven't been into a club in about oh, 20 + 9 months; but this was pretty incredible. Although, it was tons of fun, it was the only time during the entire weekend where I felt my age. No longer am I used to music vibrating through my chest, dancing close to about 2000 other people and drinks being spilled. Lynmarie and I ducked out a little early so we would be well rested for the next day.

They rented the Never Say Never for the day. Now I tried to be cool about this but I may or may not have danced down the side of the boat at one point singing "I feel like Beyonce!!!" Because only someone like Beyonce gets to sit on a yacht in Biscayne Bay getting a massage while drinking champagne and having waiters bring you fresh scallops and crab claws. The joke was we might get struck by lightning heading back in because no one deserves it this good.

It was a weekend of such luxury and fun and friendship. I have known most of these girls forever it seems like now and any weekend with them would be fun. It was such a blessing and a treat to celebrate Cat Anne's 30th together in such a fun way--I know it will be a memory none of us will forget! We kept joking that this kind of living takes some of the edge off of aging and we really can't wait until she turns 40! ;)


Don't Blink

Thank you to the Subway sandwich artist who tonight commented, "Wow, your daughter is really busy!"
Hmmm, what gave that away?--the purple circles under my eyes that make me look like I belong in the Cullen family or the fact that Loulie has turned the chip display into a track and is doing laps around it!
Either way, my Loulie Bug turned 20 months this week and this is how we get most places...
Notice the motion? It is constant. From the moment our feet hit the floor to the moment our heads hit the pillow. I kind of crack up at what Loulie wakes up thinking about. I swing open her door every morning and every afternoon after nap and this is how she greets me...
"Bidge? Sussi? Outside! Socks and shoes--go away!"
Translated that is "Bridget and Sulli--come here. Let's put on our socks and shoes so we can go outside! Woohoo!"
Seriously, those are her priorities right now--where the dogs are at all times and spending every possible second outside. And if she isn't talking, then she is singing.
And I am still loving every minute of it and trying to soak in every last second of her as this sweet still somewhat of a baby girl! 20 months has gone by waaay to fast.


A little late, as usual...

I was out of town and didn't post anything for Mother's Day but this story below got me thinking about the most generous people I know and how much I admire them for their sacrifices and just the way they give and share with such ease. Which of course made me think of my mother and all she has given me and how I am trying to now emulate that in my own parenting. That I am not trying to exactly copy everything my mother did but instead make sure that each gift I give and lesson I teach to Loulie is laced in love and sacrifice like those of my mother's.  We all know a mother's purpose never ends so Happy Belated Mother's Day to my mom and all the other mother's I know that inspire me all the time with their "precious stones" of wisdom! I love you!

A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation.

The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime. But a few days later he came back to return the stone to the wise woman. "I've been thinking," he said, "I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious: Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me the stone."



He Has Risen Indeed!

Apologies for being completely lame on the blogging front lately. Here is the post I wrote last Monday on our Easter weekend. Prepare yourself for a ridiculous amount of photos.

"Christ the Lord has Risen Today! Aaaaaalllllllleullluiaaaaa!"

I'm sorry you weren't here yesterday morning when I awoke Loulie with my rendition of the above hymn. Consider yourself lucky. My mother always points out that I am lucky that the worship team at our church drowns me out. It could just be my own superstition but I think the gentleman behind me turned off his hearing aid yesterday when they played "Oh Happy Day." I couldn't help it--you just can't sing that song quietly and apparently Loulie just couldn't help but dance.
We have been on a work hard/play hard rollercoaster for the past two weeks which is why I have been so lame on the blogging front. The weeks have been packed with lots of work and running around while we have used the weekends to enjoy all Charleston has to offer in the spring--which is incredible beauty and lots of outdoor festivals!
Last weekend, Bert's parents were here for a wedding on Friday night but stayed on to hang out with Loulie on Saturday allowing me to run a few errands and have an actual date with Bert. The whole time we were getting dressed up and leaving, we kept saying "This is so weird. This is awkward." It's sad but we have forgotten what it is like to eat somewhere that doesn't have a kids' menu. Lucky for us, dating is like riding a bike and we were sipping wine and having adult conversation with friends by 8:00!

Our lack of dates does not equal lack of fun. The best part of living here is how easy it is to entertain your family. I feel like there is a new out door activity to try everyday. I also feel like we packed just about all you can do into the past weekend.
Between egg hunts and beach trips and an incredible Easter service at Boone Hall; I couldn't help but fall a little more in love with the lowcountry. My parents were here for the weekend, their last visit before my mother makes the move to Knoxville so we spent most Saturday and Sunday after church out on Sullivan's Island. Two bike rides, a run and a couple of paddle board excursions left a little Bug tired and me getting out of bed a little slower this morning. But it was a perfect Easter weekend! And I think we all have a new hobby and some sporting goods at the top of next year's Christmas list.

One Tired Bunny

Hunting Eggs

 Hope you all had a Happy Easter celebrating our risen Lord!!!



Where were you...

when OJ was driving down the highway in the white Ford explorer?
13 yrs old, resting on the sofa after a long day of swimming, waiting for my dad to get back to Augusta after his first week of work in Macon.
when Princess Diana died?
at Lake Sinclair with my friend AnnaLee, sitting on the pullout sofa with about 10 friends
when the twin towers fell?
last minute studying for a math test in my apartment in Athens. The Today show stopped and one hour later all of Athens was shut down.
when we went to war with Iraq?
senior year spring break--my dad wouldn't let me go in case we started war and he was called to duty. I was at my parent's house in Macon.
when the US caught Saddam?
in my apartment in Atlanta, getting ready to leave for work. It was December.
when the first black president was inaugurated?
home from work with terrible morning sickness

when the US announced the killing of Osama Bin Laden?
on the elliptical, watching tv when the news came on. All I could think is "what now, Obama?"
Nothing could have prepared me for the news. Turns out the U.S. can still have some good days. After ten years, justice has been served. Thanks and praise to all the servicemen and women who have been battling this man for almost a decade!!!