I found out I was pregnant at the end of January and already had a trip scheduled to drive down to California with the kids to see their cousins, grandparents, and aunts and uncles in the middle of February. From there, we planned to fly to Hawaii for my family’s annual reunion, meeting Scott.
Morning sickness hit a day or two before I was supposed to make the drive but with Scott’s help packing the car, we made it out the door. A 9 1/2 hour drive turned into 12 1/2 hours with crazy weather, three little kids and a sick Mama but we had great audiobooks and good attitudes and we arrived eventually just as I assured the kids (and myself) that we would.
My parents’ house is a dreamland for kids complete with a tall swingset, a trampoline, a treehouse, marble tracks to build, and stacks of great books. We loved being able to do an hour or two of schoolwork and then just play it up the rest of the day.
My parents took us to Happy Hollow, and naturally my dad made sure my kids had their faces painted… it makes the photos more interesting, dontcha know. 🙂
Poor Caitlyn managed to fall down five(!) times while we were there and scraped her knees up pretty thoroughly. By the time we left, her pink tiger face was a little streaky from tears. 😦
As they are in so many things, my girls are polar opposites with their approach to rollercoasters. Caitlyn can march up to a stranger and speak her mind or charm a whole room full of people with a speech… both of which activities strike fear in the heart of Mackenzie. But put them on a fast ride and look what happens:
Daniel may be a little more like Caitlyn than like Mackenzie:
One of the benefits of hanging out all day with Grandpa (besides the gorgeous photos) is the free ride to the parking lot when the leggies are tired.
I was pretty well worn out as well, but hadn’t told my parents I was pregnant yet so I refrained from asking my dad to carry me (just barely). I took a few epic naps in the coming days that may have raised some eyebrows. We hadn’t told our kids yet and wanted to do that first, so I kept the secret as best I could and tried to look somewhat lively.
Off to Hawaii
My kids really lucked out in the cousin department. They had such a good time playing in Hawaii!
I was relieved to find that despite having no strong swimmers among my three kids they found plenty to love at the water park at the resort we stayed at.
The endless river was a huge hit with all the kids, though I think a few of the adults were looking for the end by the middle of the week. 😉
Although the Disney part of the Aulani resort turned out to be pretty minor, our kids loved reuniting with their friends from the Disney Boat the summer before.
We loved our first ever visit to the Polynesian Cultural Center! The kids were fascinated with all the shows and all three were just mesmerized by the nighttime “fire show”.
Also in Hawaii, our family totally scored with fabulous family photos taken by Dallas White, who’s a local and a SmugMugger:
… and for some reason, it’s tradition for the males in our family to take off their shirts at some point during the shoot:
Back to California
We announced our pregnancy while in Hawaii and it’s a good thing, too, because by the time I got back to my parents’ house with the kids, I was sicker than sick.
I basically laid like a lump on their couch for a week. Our planned drive back to Oregon loomed and I had to confront the fact that I was totally unable to make that drive myself. I bought Scott a one way ticket down to rescue us and he was a good sport about it. Then I pretty much took up residence on our own couch for a whole bunch of weeks! I was really grateful that reading didn’t make me sicker because at least I was able to plow through several great books during that time.
A Quiet Month
Scott and I both spent March preparing for our Paris/Iceland trip. Scott was diligently learning French, researching the best bakeries in Paris, and training for his marathon. I was planning our Iceland itinerary, thinking through the logistics of leaving our kids with cousins, and trying to show my kids love without actually getting off the couch (so morning sick still!).