We always love going to visit my parents in southern MO. They live on Table Rock Lake and have lots of toys to play with and space for all of us to stay with them when we visit, so it’s more relaxing than going to a hotel and everyone having to share a hotel room. We wear the kids out at the lake every day and have fun in the boat and on the jet ski. Branson is close by and there’s obviously tons to do there as well, although we didn’t go there much this trip because I’m pregnant. They live like 15 mins from Silver Dollar City so next time we’re there we’ll go there again, but being pregnant and going to amusement parks don’t go too well together.
Ben is by far, our most cautious kiddo. He was so excited to go to the lake but then when we got there and it was time to jump off the dock, he wasn’t super excited about doing that. It took us a good 10 mins to get him to jump in the first time, but after that he probably jumped off the dock at least 250 times while we were there. He also actually rode on the jet ski and on the tube behind the jet ski too and loved it. I like that he’s cautious and not a crazy dare devil like some boys are.
Jamison, on the other hand, is crazy. He would have easily gone sailing off the dock by himself without hesitation. His adventuresome spirit makes me so nervous because you have to watch him like a hawk. We made sure we always put his life jacket on him before we got anywhere near the water or the dock and we had him wear his floatie thing and sit in a tube. When he just wore his floaties, he’d have his mouth in the water the whole time. He still would almost tip the tube over trying to put his face in the water and he loved splashing. That boy is going to keep me on my toes, that’s for sure.
Jamison loved the boat rides and so did the big kids. The second night there they fell asleep on the ride home from dinner. That’s always a good sign that we’re wearing them out. I wish we had a lake so close that they could go swimming in. They loved it. Jamison didn’t even mind wearing his life jacket in the boat too much. He fell asleep a few times in there too and Ben would go underneath the front of the boat and fall asleep on the bed down there. I used to do that all the time too, so I’m not surprised that he did.
My mom borrowed a high chair from a friend and they have some toys at their house for the kids to play with. I would love to have a big house like they do someday, especially when we have grand kids, but I guess even before then. The 2 of them probably don’t need anywhere near that much space, but when you have 4 kids, you do need space. (And 3 dogs.) J was fascinated with my parents cat, Lucy. She wasn’t super fond of him, but he learned to say “key” (kitty) when we were there and he loved following her around.
My cousins came to visit from central IL while we were there too, so it was good to see them. Their kids are 14 and 18 and it seems like the last time we saw them they were Abbie’s and Ben’s ages. My kids loved spending time with their kids and Mark and I enjoyed talking with Marc and Alli too. It was a nice visit, but very short. I wish we could see them more often.
I had 2 requests while we were there. I really wanted to eat at the Crap Shack since we don’t have any of those near us and I wanted to go to the quilt store in Branson that I love. I got to do both and my mom and I had a good time wandering around the quilt store while the kids stayed with Mark and my dad. I could spend HOURS at that store looking at everything they have to offer, but we only spent about 30 mins there and I only bought one package of pre-cut Tula Pink fabric. I added it to my collection. I still have all the fabric I bought on my last visit there 2 years ago… I tend to hoard fabric. It makes me happy.
Getting home was a bit of a mess. We were supposed to fly out at like 9pm but the plane we were supposed to fly out on hit birds on the landing into Branson, so they ended up cancelling the flight around 11pm and rescheduling it for the next morning at 10am. We had to rent a car and get a hotel room near the airport, which was okay, just kind of expensive, but we made it work. And we were able to have breakfast with my parents at Cracker Barrell the next morning before we flew out. The kids did great on the flights, despite us having to hold Jamison in our laps because we didn’t buy him a seat. Abbie was fine saying goodbye to my parents, but as the plane was taking off, she was crying. I asked her what was wrong and she said she didn’t want to leave. =( Breaks my heart so then I sat there and cried too… ugh. I wish we lived much closer to them so we could see them more often. Someday.