Traveling Through.

Yooooooowsas.  Remember me?  Didn’t plan on disappearing like that, but here I am and two weeks have passed.  Sorry about that (I know some of you worried!).  What actually happened is that we went out of town!

I had planned to continue writing and posting during down time and sleep time, but it turned out that those two things didn’t really exist – ha!  We had a wonderful time visiting family and all down time was spent chatting and catching up.  I opened my computer exactly once.  The kids had a blast but sleep was rough, so any nap time breaks required naps for mom as well. 

So with that out of the way – let me tell you about our trip!  We have been hoping to get back to the Midwest to see our families for a while now.  The boys and I haven’t been back since last May when my sister graduated from college – feels like an eternity (and Graham was in my belly!). 

Now that we have two kids, our travel has really slowed down (which we anticipated!).  The logistics and expenses seem far more than two times more complicated.  So when Casey had a business trip to Cincinnati pop up, we jumped at the opportunity to tag along! 

It was our first time flying with both boys, and I went into it expecting the worst (and hoping to be pleasantly surprised).  Casey says he thinks it was better than anticipated.  I thought it was tough.  Graham isn’t a sleeper (don’t let this pic fool you – lasted 20 minutes!) and also doesn’t take a pacifier, so it’s harder to keep him happy in a small space.  All things considered though, everyone did pretty well. 

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We got to Ohio very late Wednesday night, and immediately had to set up camp in our hotel and figure out the sleeping scenario.  We were really lucky that since it was a business trip for Casey, we were able to share his hotel suite.  This nice new hotel just opened up and is walkable to my mom’s house and all my favorite spots – so convenient.  We had a large master bedroom (which we shared with Graham). 

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And we also had a HUGE living room!  This picture doesn’t do it justice.  Cullen slept in another pack n play in a half bathroom (that we didn’t use otherwise), and it actually worked out really well.  Figuring out how and where we would all sleep was my biggest concern going into the trip, and it turned  out to be no big deal. 

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While we were there, we followed the same type of routine we do at home (with a three hour time change thrown in – yikes!).  My mom, friends, and Casey all had to work during the days, so I hung out with the boys and found fun things for us to do.  Sadly, I brought all the Seattle rain with me and it poured the whole time we were there other than a few small pockets of sunshine. 

I spent Wednesday morning having brunch with my best friend, Thursday morning at the house of other good friends, and Friday morning at the zoo (in the rain!) with my mom.  Afternoons were spent napping, or waiting for Cullen to wake up from his nap.  Graham and I had fun relaxing and playing on the giant king size bed. 

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And despite doing a lot of the things we do when we’re at home, it just felt really nice to get away and unplug a bit.  The boys handled the travel and the time change really well, and they both seemed so happy to be around so many loved ones.

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Friday was our trip to the zoo with Grandma, and we managed to see a few of our favorite animals despite drizzly skies, lots of wind, and even a power outage! 

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We spent evenings over at my mom’s house enjoying home cooked meals and a plethora of toys and entertainment. 

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She was in Grandma heaven! 

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Once Casey was off work on Friday, we loaded up the car and headed to Indianapolis for the weekend.  We wanted to make sure we had the chance to visit both of our families since we’d made such a far trek across the country!  We saw Casey’s parents back in February, but it’s amazing how much Graham has already changed since then.

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And both boys got to spend time with their great grandma, Jacque, which is extra special since it is hard for her to travel out to see us.  It’s really important to us that we get back as often as possible so she can be with them.  Pictures just aren’t the same as the real thing. 

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We got to see grandparents, uncles, and cousins and we had a great time just hanging out at the house catching up. 

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Four generations of Malone!

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We also got to see my sister Sarah while we were there!  She lives in Indianapolis now, so we got to see her for dinner on Saturday as well as brunch on Sunday.  Somehow still never enough, sniff. 

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Checking out dad’s very first baseball bat back at Mimi and Grandpa’s house…

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And a (pretend) ride on Grandpa’s motorcycle!

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Sunday afternoon we headed back to Ohio, as Casey had to work two more days in the Cincinnati office.  We checked back into the hotel, and got ready for a few more days with my family.  One of the perks?  An indoor saltwater pool!  Cullen was totally pumped to swim – he hadn’t been in a pool since last summer!  And this was Graham’s first dip (and first tiny bathing suit!).

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The boys had to go one at a time since I couldn’t hold them both in the water alone (while my mom watched the other one).  Graham went first and was not a huge fan.  Lasted about two minutes. Cullen was a fish and didn’t want to get out even when he was shivering and pruning like a raisin.  We had a blast. 

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Is there anything more fun than a baby in a bathing suit?

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We spent our final (rainy) mornings at the children’s museum and the Newport Aquarium.  We do the museums and zoos all the time in Seattle, and it was fun to try them out somewhere new. Cullen is finally at an age where he can really enjoy this stuff, and I love it.

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It was a long but wonderful trip home, and I’m feeling homesick for our loved ones now that we’re back.  Although I don’t miss eating out so much and hotel room life (despite how nice it was).  Counting down until we see them all again at the end of the summer!

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More to come on Monday!