The older I get, the less my parent's house feels like home to me. My room is a guest room and everything is always so clean, much cleaner than when I used to live there with 4 siblings. I've lived in so many places since I moved away from that house in 2002. I've created so many homes by myself, with room mates and with my husband and son. Still, no matter how far removed those memories of growing up are, my parents house will always be my home away from home. It is always there, always the same. It is my place of comfort. I can actually relax and enjoy a vacation when I'm there. We had a wonderful time laying around, playing together and putzin' around town.
Eli played with the doggies and uncle Jesse in the back yard while Dan dug up some wild onions. Grandma and grandpa had lots of opportunities to squeeze Eli's cheeks and make him giggle. There was a lot of "feetball" and "GO IRISH!". Grandpa and Eli also played airplanes! And of course, Eli had plenty of fun hanging out with the cat, BAM.
Eli has been counting for weeks now, but I wasn't able to get it on tape until now. He always forgets numbers 2,4 and 7. Sometimes he will go up to 12 leaving out only those three numbers. Sometimes he gets to 5 and then gets distracted by something else, then says "twelve" over and over again. Either way, it's hilariously cute!
Even though it was rainy on Thursday, grandma and Eli played outside with the dogs. We had forgotten Eli's rain boots. Thankfully, my parents are prepared for any situation...they still had the little cowboy boots my sister Abby used to wear while riding. Sure, they were a little big, but they did the job. Plus, Eli loved them.
Aunt Abby came up from Chattanooga on Wednesday night and stayed until Friday morning. It was so fun to see her again. Elijah loves playing with aunt Abby!!! She had her 20 lb. kettle bell at the house, and we all marveled at it's weight and the fact that Abby exercises with it regularly! She teaches a class in Chattanooga and often swings heavier kettle bells than all the guys! Eli wanted to give it a try and was even able to get it off the ground for a second....with the help of Aunt Abby.
Lunch was great and I fulfilled yet another craving for a fried chicken salad with extra honey mustard. Eli didn't eat anything but a piece of bread and a lemon. He has been so random with food lately, but it's not a battle I have chosen to fight. Most kids his age go through this, and I have decided to wait it out. Plus, with his cheeks, you KNOW he ain't starvin'!
After goodbyes, we hopped in the car and made our way back to the great Midwest. Eli took a very short nap, but was happy to get some typing done. By the way-keyboards are GREAT car/road trip toys for toddlers. Who can resist a bunch of buttons!!! We picked ours up at a thrift store on half-off day for a whopping $0.75. Just wipe it down (or not and count it as vaccinations against who knows what.....germs don't scare me!) and voila!
Our time in Tennessee was short, but much needed. You just can't beat 4 days in the country with a stocked fridge and free babysitters! Now, it's back to school and work until mid May. Let's hope our vacation was enough to get us through the next 6 weeks!