We're Back!!!

We are back from our trip to Tennessee! I won't even attempt to share all of the photos we took, but here is one shot of the three families. Reardons, Henicks and Waits.
The trip down was surprisingly uneventful. Alex was a real champ, took all her meds and didn't get sick at all. It also helped that we drove both ways through the night. And Cullen was a trooper too even despite having his nap schedule essentially demolished.

The first night and a half, we stayed at the Christmas hotel. Alex LOVED the Christmas theme that could be seen throughout every inch of the hotel. She especially enjoyed the cookies and milk with Santa each night. And, though not so toddler friendly, we had the most beautiful and ornately decorated Christmas tree right in our room!
The hotel also had a pool, which the kids really enjoyed. Even I, gladly entered the waters. You know it must be over 90 degrees for Sue to go swimming!

Our cabin was wonderful. 2 master bedrooms, living room, dining, kitchen, game room, 3 decks, hot tub, etc. The view was incredible, though the drive was a rather hair raising experience. Some of the hills were 40 degree inclines with many sharp twists and turns. We also experienced some excitement when a black bear decided to join us for some steak dinner. It was fun watching him from above. Then another paid a visit one morning right outside our door. We had to wait a few minutes to leave the cabin as he was circling the dumpster next to our van.
The first night was also spent with some special guests. Gabi's birth grandma (Kathy) and two of Gabi's bio-sisters (Ashley & Erica) joined us for the night. It was such a treat and Kathy soon became "Grandma" to all. Cullen took to her particularly well and spent the second dinner literally hanging onto her. The kids all enjoyed the water rides at Dollywood's Splash Country.
On Sunday we did some shopping and eventually landed at the Dixie Stampede. Everyone enjoyed the show! And we were really surprised at how much Cullen enjoyed all of the dinner shows. He laughed, danced, clapped and screeched the entire time.
On Tuesday we visited an area in the National Park called Cade's Cove. Alex was having major wardrobe issues that day (hated her shirt) and refused to cooperate with the first half of the pictures. I told her how many wonderful pictures we had of Cullen, and so few of her. Since she has a wicked case of siling rivalry, she then decided to play American's Next Top Model the rest of the trip.
Wednesday, my birthday, was a lot of fun. We spent the morning at Ripley's Aquarium. I was surprised at how much both of my kids loved the aquarium. For lunch, we stopped at some Cantina style Mexican place. We were all dying for Mexican. Anything to not be served fritteres and country fried "meat of ones choice". And dinner was great! We all came back to the cabin. Teri and Jen threw a little party and we indulged in Filet Mignon and Chocolate cake! Good times.
Thursday we did some outlet shopping and the the BlackBear Jamboree at night. Again, the kids LOVED the show. After dinner, Alex and Gabi mined for their own gems, which was fun.
Friday, our last day, was pretty low key. More shopping, packing, shopping, dinner and then the Comedy Barn. A complete collection of photos can be found on my shutterfly page.

Of course, the best part of the trip was seeing our dear friends Shane and Jen again. It's hard to believe it was nearly 3 yrs since our last trip. 3 year and 3 babies later! It was wonderful to finally meet Emma and to see how much Hannah has grown. Now if we can only talk Mr Shane into a trip up North next summer!


Heather said...

Welcome back! So glad you guys had a wonderful time!! Have to head over to Shutterfly to check out your pictures... :)

We're in the final countdown to our trip to Disney and getting very excited! We're taking a link of the chain we made each day to count down!

Rebecca said...

It really sounds like such a great trip. I'm so glad you had a good time. The hotel looks like fun. Your birthday cake is the same one we got for Jeremiah this year! Your pictures really make me want to take a vacation.

Paulette said...

Great vacation!!

Jen said...

I'm hoping you can talk Mr. Shane into it as well. Unfortunately, he doesn't read blogs! He hasn't even been invited to read ours because I know he doesn't read blogs. LOL!

Seeing your photos makes me want to go back!