Category Archives: Family

Up to the Mountains

In June we had an exciting thing happen for the very first time; a family vacation!

We have had lots of mini-trips over the years of visiting family and friends in different areas (Mississippi, Alabama, all over Florida and even through Louisiana and into Houston). However, we had never actually taken a trip, just us and the kids to a place all on our own.

It was amazing! Seriously, so refreshing and relaxing. Stephen took the reigns and picked out a week to rent us a cabin in the Mountains of North Georgia. My heart was bursting when he told us. The girls were so excited, so we made a countdown on our family calendar for the trip.

We went to the library the Friday before we left so stock up on books for the road. We’d been to St. Augustine and Houston with them when they were younger so this wasn’t the longest drive they’d had, but we were also adding a 6 month old to the mix this go around.

I packed us lots of snacks and drawing supplies, and the added surprise of bringing movies in the van that they’d get to watch on the DVD player that we had YET TO USE in the almost 2 years we’ve had the van. They were so surprised when Tangled started playing about 4 hours into the drive.

We left on a Sunday morning and got back Thursday evening. We stayed in a 2 bedroom cabin on a nice sized property, lots of room where the girls explored and played. We took family walks, which is pretty much my biggest love language, and watched Star Wars together one night and Stephem and I got lots of card game time in at night. My cup was overflowing. We ate out for dinner a few evenings, which we never do, and the girls did wonderful. Piper was the sweetest little chilled out baby, which was such a great bonus since we were usually out and about during her naps and them again past hers and the girls bedtime.

Now, on to what really matters here, the photo evidence of our First Family Vaca 

 

A Glimpse Inside: Our 2016 Holidays

At the request of my overseas sister, Sara, I am sharing a look into our 2016 holiday season.

It was crazy, fun, tiring and the weather was flippantly confusing, in true florida fashion.

We did a lot of cuddling, playing, crafts, dancing and, in true we-have-a-newborn spirit, napping (Stephen, me and the baby that is, Sarah and Elanor laugh at naps ).

 

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That Time I Was a Runner..

Back in July of 2015, which was somehow a year ago, my sister and I decided to train for the Pensacola Half Marathon. It was the first time in over 4 years that neither of us were pregnant or nursing babies and so we decided to celebrate with the joy of exercise (aka: a bit of freedom and brain break time). I totally understand now why women ages 29-39 are the biggest age group of runners. Running/training = FREEDOM!!!! Oh, and healthiness, I’m sure that has something to do with it also.

We signed up for a boot camp class to kickstart our muscle growth because that is a sure fire way to get your body ready for anything that requires long endurance. And a half marathon definitely would require that of us. After a few weeks of grueling but amazing workouts we went running for the first time and were both floored that we made it 3 miles. This coming from two gals that probably couldn’t do more than 1 mile a few weeks before. We actually got a picture when it happened – check out all that sweat… running in July you guys, it’s no joke!

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We continued working out at the same place and ran 3-4 days a week. On Saturdays we did our long runs at a nearby trail or in our neighborhood and surrounding roads. We gave ourselves almost 5 months to train for 13.1 miles. It was pretty much a perfect timeline for us.

We would text our mom and dad photos after our runs. I’m telling you, those endorphin’s were awesome for our tired mommy selves.

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Our last long run before the race! Only 1.5 miles short of what we’d be doing on race day.

 

 

Race Day: We had a crazy thunderstorm roll in and one thing we read was about wrapping your feet in plastic bags to keep the rain from soaking your socks. We looked silly but it seriously helped a ton. I think I got a good 5 miles in before my first one broke. Miriah wasn’t as fortunate, but anything is better than having soaked feet before you even start running.


At one point around mile 5 (which is why I still had energy to jump) we saw a friend and she snapped a few photos of us while waiting to see her husband.

 

The finishing stretch!

 

 WE DID IT!!!

 

Our race time!

my post-race attire

 

We kept running after the race, though not as consistently. Then one day at the end of December I told Miriah I wanted to run the Pensacola Beach Half Marathon and that she was going to run it with me. So I did the sisterly thing and signed us both up and locked her into it so she would HAVE to train with me ;)  #SiblingLove

It was in the middle of January and I thought it was a great race. The weather was super damp and cool, with flat terrain the entire time. Miriah may give a tad different account, but I’d say it was a great start to our 2016 running. I even made us special shirts for it. Nothing quite like some fun clothing motivation.

Plus, we invited mom and dad to come and were SO psyched when we saw them at the finishing stretch. It was awesome. I hope to one day do a race and Stephen comes and has the girls there. It’s such a huge motivator.

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This is when I saw dad. We were in the last 1/4 mile of the run and it was such an exciting moment to see him there cheering for us!

 

 

 

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I don’t know what she’s doing, but this one is too funny not to share :)


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My friend Nicole and I ran 1 race before this and then 1 more after, the Jackon Blues Half (the first week of January) and then the Gulf Coast Half. Both were a lot of fun, though the Jackson Blues race about killed me because of the crazy hills all over the city.

A before and after :)

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I ate the biggest breakfast of my life after that race! We made it back to the hotel with 20 minutes til the continental breakfast was over.

Then the Gulf Coast race -

 

 

Miriah came with Addison to this one. It was a blast seeing them there at the home stretch. Addison made me a sign and everything ♡

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Between all those races Miriah and I ran one more, the Pensacola Double Bridge. It was a fun race and we had amazing tail wind the entire time! We found Nicole out there while waiting for the race to start.

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And just for fun – this is what happens when mom agrees to watch the girls so we can go running on a weekday, without us waking up at 5:20AM to do it before the kids get up…

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They always find us …   ;)IMG_0305

 

Here’s hoping some more running occurs in the rest of 2016 and at the very least 2017 is a year of running again! Just looking at these photos has me wanting to get out there!

Life Update: iPhone version

The summer season has come on fast. It felt like we just had Sarahs 5th Birthday and now we are 1/2 way through May.

The girls and I have been enjoying a few of our favorite warm weather activities. Miriah and Addison are often with us with the help of our extra seats of the van. It’s also hard to believe we’ve had that for over 9 months already.

So in March Sarah turned 5. We had a little get together with family at our house and the kids all had a blast.

We got her a bike and she is really loving it.

The week after that I turned 32! We had a joined bday fajita dinner at my parents for Jeff and I since our birthdays are close. A friend from church, Melissa, made me a from-scratch strawberry cake. It was amazing!

After that was Miriah and my camping trip, which I wrote about a few weeks back.

Since then we have gone on a few beach trips, blueberry picking, and visits with friends and park trips.

                   Fort Pickens visit

 

Easter 2016

I love the real-life of this group kid photo.

Stephen on puppy-patrol at the park.


Just a couple girls cruising the neighborhood.


Burying Nana :)


Stephen and I slept in one Saturday morning and found the girls like this around 7:30…

My sweet friend Rebekah, who is about to cross the globe with her two kiddos to join her husband in New Zealand,where they are moving to. So excited to see their adventure unfold (Instagram to the rescue!)


Family meal at Jason & Kelley’s. Dad was there too, he snapped the photo to send to mom, who was out of town.
Grandma with her girls.


And that about sums up a life update from my iPhone photos.

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Last night I was told by a sweet friend that lives far far away, across an ocean and 3 hours in the future (that’s how I like to imagine time zones), that updates without words or explanations or big life events are needed. “Just pictures will do. Even if they’re straight from your phone.” So I am going to start doing that, because I love her and when someone I care about asks to see pictures of our life I provide. 

To my Uruguay family.

        Christmas with the Wells: 2015   

    
    
    
    
   
  

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http://www.thehandmadehome.net/2015/06/simple-outdoor-candles/My sister planned a night to take the girls so Stephen and I could go out for dinner. It was a fun evening and before leaving I told Stephen we needed a picture together because, well, it had been forever since we had one that wasn’t from the back of our phone. He  of course was being goofy and made me laugh. He always knows how :)

Aaaaand, I’m including a portrait version so you can see that he is tickling me and nothing more, due to the funny hand placement in the picture above. Now if you weren’t thinking anything about it you are, so oops and your welcome ;)

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Another version of yesterdays photo. I wanted to share it because I love how you can see how close Sarah is cuddling up to Stephen. When we sit or lay together after the girls are in bed I do the same thing, I lay my legs across the top of his from the side like that. I claim it’s because he steals all the ottoman, but apparently it’s just in my blood ;)

Also – that is one HAPPY Elanor after getting a good nap on her dad. That smile and the PB sandwich are just perfect!

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I can’t tell you how much it fills my heart when I see the girls getting cuddles with dad. Elanor took a late afternoon nap and Sarah joined in on the snuggling and played an iPad game with him. I love these three so much.

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Stephen and the girls have started playing a little on the Wii. They absolutely love it! Sarah has gotten really good at bowling, and the few times we golfed were hilarious and very entertaining.

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Nana came by for a visit and the girls love to tell her stories about their day. Elanor talks like me, with some crazy hand motions and body language. Then again, looking at this picture I suppose she gets it from her Nana, which is quite likely where I got it from as well…