All Gave Some; Some Gave All
Our GoPro Show - The Ridiculous Introduction

Trips Afield: Bradenton & Sarasota Visit To See Stephanie, Lucas & Vinnie!


This past Friday was a day we were looking forward to all week! Remember our good friends Stephanie and Tim, and their two boys Luke and Vinnie, from Virginia? Well, Steph and the kids came down to Florida to visit family and have some fun. Of COURSE we had to drive up to see them! They stayed in Bradenton for the week, and though money was tight, I told Steph I would move Heaven and Earth to be able to go see them. And we did!

2016-05-27 13.07.47

We got lost about two miles from their condo, because our GPS would not connect. I drove around for about an hour until we finally landed in the right development. When we arrived, 6-year-old Luke rushed out the door, bear-hugged Jack, and then ran back inside ignoring the rest of us. It was too funny! All five kids were getting along famously, which was great, since Steph and I had no firm plans other than to hang out and enjoy the day together. She wanted to go to the beach, and since I had lived in nearby Sarasota many moons ago while I worked at Mote Marine Laboratory, I suggested we go down to St. Armand's Circle and nearby Lido Beach. I thought it would be exactly the sort of fine white sand and low waves that would suit all of us.

Camera Uploads-002

Four-year-old Vinnie was worried about getting sand on his feet and initially didn't want to go to the beach, but he was able to have some fun after all!

2016-05-27 13.14.37

2016-05-27 13.16.17

Stephanie - one of my favorite friends in the world ♥

2016-05-27 13.16.57

You know when you're trying to take a decent candid shot of everybody (except yourself, of course, because why would you want to do that?), and everyone keeps looking away from the camera? Yeah, that kept happening.

2016-05-27 13.18.28

Lucas Wayne, showing off his way-cool, totally indestructible glasses

2016-05-27 13.18.46

I love this kid and his zest for life!

2016-05-27 13.19.09

Mama Stephanie and her boy-childrens ♥

2016-05-27 13.19.44

Of course, I took a few pix of my own children, but I can do that all the time. Vinnie and Lucas were my lens' focus that day!

2016-05-27 13.20.04

Look at that little nub of a nose! *Swoon*

2016-05-27 13.50.45  2016-05-27 13.50.49

Jack River buried himself up to his, as Chloë put it, nipples. Er, uh, looks like his nipples are on his clavicle? :P

2016-05-27 13.53.37

Sisters eatin' sammiches

2016-05-27 13.55.12

This is my favorite picture of the trip. Or maybe ever. So cute!!! ♥

2016-05-27 13.58.07

I'm not sure what it is about this simple foto of Chloë drinking water, but I love it. I seriously love it.

2016-05-27 14.07.20

☼ ♪ ♫ The sun is hot. It burns all day. But I don't need no Bain de Soleil.

I'm on the sand. Girls at hand. I got secret plan.

The sun don't hurt, 'cause I got on a t-shirt.

I've got a Farmer Tan! ♫ ♪ ☼

(No one from my Durgee Junior High days - in Baldwinsville, NY - will probably be reading this; surely, they would remember singing this ridiculous but fun song in chorus!)

2016-05-27 16.50.22

After we finished up at the beach, we went back to Stephanie's condo in Bradenton and put Vinnie down for a nap. I stayed with him in the condo, while Steph took the other four kids to the pool. Not enough swimming in a day!

2016-05-27 16.51.36

Eventually, Vinnie woke up, so we walked over to the pool together. These five waterbabies had a splish-splashin' fun time!

I didn't swim in the pool, but I should have, because I quickly overheated.

2016-05-27 16.52.15

Steph was throwing the kids up in the air ... even my two big girls! Something I could never do, after the reached a certain size. She's a strong girl!

2016-05-27 16.53.18

♥ One more of my Virginia bestie, Stephernuggets ♥

And there you have it!

{From there, we raced home to meet Rob, who was having some serious neuro stuff going on. He'd had a migraine for a few days, and his other symptoms related to the tumor-formerly-in-his-head were acting up. I took him to the ER, and they treated the migraine but didn't do another MRI. His symptoms have since abated, but we'll still follow up with his neuro team as appropriate, this week. I hate when he scares me like that!}

Great to see Stephanie and the boys, and I was excited to learn that Vinnie can now wear cotton and linen and all the things! Like, store-bought things! After 4½ years of wearing only silk, cashmere, and/or wool, that's a fantastic development!