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Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Sobering Wet Trip

Jennifer and I took her kids to Ohio for the week end. The men seem to always have something else to do LOL. It was the week end of the walk in honor of Andrew in support of suicide prevention and it was also the week end Charlie and his family were moving out of Ohio and back to Maryland.

We didn't get there until Saturday afternoon, driving through rain most of the way. No one likes to travel in the rain but we were going to a CAMPGROUND and planned to participate in a walk OUTSIDE at the zoo. We decided to upgrade our rustic cabin to a house with a bathroom and HEAT. After checking in and teaching Jack the word "organize" we took off to the mall to meet up with Charlie and family at the play area we have grown to love there.

Jack remembers the play area and Wyatt of course and it took a lot to get him through dinner and to the time we were to meet up with them. Imagine our panic when we got there and it was no longer the play area but a store YIKES.We quickly realized that it was just in a new location. Crisis averted.
Jack wasn't suppose to be in the little kids area. It appears that at 3 1/2 he is too tall at 41"

Come on in. He is such a good big brother. He doesn't refer to her as Lily or my sister. He calls her "My Baby"

Then Wyatt and Piper showed up and their parents asked if they could leave them with us and go see a movie hahahahahahaha wait hahahahaha

Piper and Lily. only 4 months apart

Piper Wyatt. They all love this house. Maybe he is too big for the toddler area but he's not too old. Lily loves that house too. Lily and Piper Yes, that's me with a lot less hair. I donated it to Locks of Love. Now I need to decide what color I want it to be. PIPER LILY
Cousins 9 months apart Cousins

Wyatt(& Lily)
I didn't go far without my Mountain Dew all week end.
Lily & Piper
Jack & Lily
Can I borrow your binky?
What was even funnier was them trying to get out. I had to walk away and laugh while Mommy helped them.

Even Lily thought they were funny.

Piper & Jack


Our Escape Artist

The Boys

The girls made a good trade. A binky for a sippy cup.
Where does she think she's going?

Uncle Chuckles
What you say, this isn't the right way to pick you up.

Wyatt, stop being silly and come in and play.


The boys were excited to sleep in bunk beds but a little disappointed that they couldn't sleep on the top. That honor was saved for me and Jen.

sweet Wyatt

No, your cousin cannot sleep in your bed. Piper actually had her pack and play in the kitchen and Lily had the walk in closet, lucky girl.

Sunday morning, moving a bit sloooowww.

Piper sneeking that cup again.

The boys decided to take the bull by the horns and get Charlie out of bed themselves. Jen & I took Lily to church and left Charlie and Michele with the other three. We met up again at our other favorite meeting place, McDonald's PlayPlace.Where Charlie and Michele desserted us(with nary a diaper or dry pair of pants) to finish packing their house up.

Our wild woman, Lily. She can keep up with the best of them.

Our Princess P was so good. She sat in the high chair the whole time but when I lifted her out I realized she had pooped through her pants. With no spare clothes it was off to KMart.
Jack is such a ball of energy and always so happy. My brother and sister were amazed at how much older he seems.No longer a baby or even a toddler but a little boy.

Lily made a new friend and actually thought this little girl could catch her. Yes that's Jack rolling around the floor.
Look at our Little Man, Wyatt, waaaay up there. He didn't want to come down and for a newly potty trained boy that's not such a good idea. Oh well, had to go to KMart anyway.

Wait, where's Wyatt?

Just take it.

Thank you Piper here is something for you too.

Back at the 'cabin' again. Charlie & Michele said they had about three hours worth of work. Six hours later . . . . WHERE'S MY MOUNTAIN DEW?

We tried to get them all to take a nap and I think eventually they all did but all at different times. Did I mention there was no TV or internet?
We had to start getting ready for The Walk. I guess Lily thought Piper needed her hair fixed too.
Not quite sure how Piper got this chair away from the boys. It was a chair battle all week end. Maybe it was those big blue eyes. riiiiight!
I can't remember why Lily doesn't have a shirt. It could have something to do with the fact that she's eating dinner.

The Walk

Our main purpose of the visit was to support Suicide Prevention in honor of our 21 year old nephew, Andrew, who shot himself May 30,2011 by collecting money for and participating in the Into The Light Walk. Our team colleted over $6,000(including the matching contributions made by my sisters work place) for SPEA which targets suicide prevention and awareness in teens and young people.

Thank you to my friends for donating $200.

It was rainy and cold but the kids didn't seem to mind. Originally Shawn & Jen were both going to come. They met in AIT (Army Individual Training) when they were both being trained as Mental Health Specialists (her as a Reservist, him as Active Duty). He spent two tours in Iraq and has dealt with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) of his own as Andrew did and in his duty has listened to many soldiers also dealing with it. They wanted to support this cause as a family but in the end duty called him away and he was not able to go with us.

My sister had T-shirts made for all of us with Andrews picture on the back to wear. Only thing was we had to put them over all our warm clothes. We weren't the only group there with matching shirts of a loved one but

there were so so many, it broke my heart. During the walk itself I was able to walk with Andrew's big sister or as she calls herself, his second mother, Erin. I am honored that she chose to spend this time with me. I can't even imagine her pain.

The kids stayed in the stroller most of the time. Pretty hard considering the excitement in the air. They acted up some and Jen was stressed but I was happy to have all three of them with me.Thanks Jen.
It was very sobering to stand in this pavilion with thousands of people listening to testimonies from families going through the horror of suicide. It touches so many. OK, so by the time we left we were willing to do anything to keep these two happy including potato chips (hey, they were giving them away). We brought pj's along and got them ready for bed in the van. I'd like to say they both fell asleep and we just carried them in and put them to bed but I can't.
We left for home Monday morning and decided to take the scenic route. The kids were good and the rain had stopped. It's good to be home.

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