Visiting Tiffini is always one of the highlights of our year.
Living across the country from family is definitely not ideal,
but I'm forever grateful that we've been able to figure out a way to see each other as much as we can.
There's a whole write up of our trip a few posts back (with a video), but I still wanted to do a bit of a photo dump as well, although it might be slightly repetitive. Consider this the scrapbook of the trip.
Flying all day across the country with a layover and three kids (and no Garrett), definitely had me sweating. As excited as I was to get to Tiffini's, I knew I wouldn't be able to relax until we were there. It was a long day, but the kids really did awesome. Belle won the award for best behaved, of course. Johnny had a couple hiccups but ended up taking a decent nap somewhere over Ohio, which was amazing. And Rae was pretty thrilled that she got to watch shows ALL day, so she was pretty good too!
Our layover was in Chicago, which has one of the coolest airports. We spent a couple hours there, exploring, eating, and taking like 5 potty breaks. I will say, the airport was awesome, but the people here were super rude and I did get a little fired up after an old man came and sat right next to us (when there were a million open seats that he could have chosen) and then gave me dirty looks when Johnny accidentally knocked down his newspaper. I apologized for John, sincerely, but after the huffs-and-puffs continued, I couldn't help but tell him that he was more than welcome to move to a different seat.
(CONTINUED AFTER THE JUMP)
Old Greenwich, Connecticut might just be the dreamiest town in America. The beach is literally down the street from Tiffini's house, but there's also water access in their backyard. We spent as much time on the shore as we could, and it was SO fun. Rae caught a real-life hermit crab, and was even brave enough to hold it! Johnny spent most of his time throwing rocks/shells into the ocean or playing with his tractors in the sand....he was completely in his element! Belle was her angel self, and napped on-and-off while we were there. T and I lounged next to each other chatting and laughing as we watched the 4 cousins running around, digging tunnels, jumping over waves, climbing up the awnings, and chasing seagulls.
T and John just had a gorgeous fire pit built in their backyard, and we were lucky enough to be there for it's inaugural fire. S'mores all around made for squeals and giggles and sticky, smiley faces.
Saturday was my cousin, Carrissa's, baby shower in New Jersey. Johnny stayed home with Uncle John and Coslton, and me, Tiffini, Piper, Rae, and Belle spent the day at Camp Kennedy. Camp Kennedy is my Aunt and Uncle's house, which is where I spent so many summer vacations and Christmas break's at growing up. My heart was bursting the whole time we were there as I watched some of my very very favorite people love on my kiddos. It was a total full-circle moment for me.
At the end of the shower, my cousin Sean took Rae and Pip and JUMPED IN THE POOL. IN THEIR CLOTHES! Rae literally couldn't believe that she got to be sooo rebellious, haha. It's been over a month and she's still talking about how ca-razy it was!
The next day was Father's Day which we celebrated with a big BBQ, amazing food, the coolest English friends, and more s'mores, of course! The kids ran around giggling and screaming and playing the whole time. At one point they found a long board and started riding it down the hill in the backyard. We laughed as we watching them hold on to each other for dear life, wide-eyed and screaming, as if the hill was ginormous. I'm sure to them it was huge!
The end of each day was filled with the sweetest bedtimes....stories, cuddles, and sleepovers. Every night I thought my heart would burst for these 5 little people. I just love them so much.
We spent the last day of our trip in the city, but made sure to get back to our cousins as soon as we could. We spent that night playing in the grass and taking "magic pictures" (aka: polaroids) until a big thunderstorm rolled in, and then we all cuddled up and watched a movie together until bedtime.
The flight home was a bit of a doozy, but could have been worse. We had to wake up at 3:30am Connecticut-time, which is 12:30am Phoenix-time. And then we came home to a broken air conditioner and 122 degree's outside. Apparently a bunch of flights couldn't land because of the heat, so we were lucky we got in early enough.
While we were partying in Connecticut and NYC, Garrett was off adventuring with his Dad and brothers. They went on a 8-day rafting trip down the Grand Canyon / Colorado River. I definitely need to do a post highlighting that, but that'll have to be another day. When we got home from our trip, we still had to wait a day and half before he got home, which was a little rough with a half-functioning A/C and record temperatures. Plus, we were having MAJOR withdrawals after 9 days without our favorite, favorite, favorite guy! When he finally did get home, we held on tight and didn't let go.