Murray, 2017 edition

This past weekend we all took a trip to Murray Kentucky. Murray holds a special place in our hearts because so many major events in our lives happened here. We both went to school here; We met here, Got Married here, developed our first relationships here. There are a number of things I could focus on, but I really want to narrow it down to a few, the first being the Church.

The Church (Elm Grove) is important to us because we received so much support from the people there. To this day, I’ve never felt so encouraged and blessed by the people around me. Many families there would have Alex and me over for dinner, buy us lunch after church, take us on trips. You name it, these guys did it. When we go back to Murray, we try to link up with as many of these people as possible.

We stayed with David and Dee Morgan. They’re a prime example of one of the families that really took us in. We spent a lot of time with them and with their family (Johnny, Cathy, Jayden, and Kaylee) this trip. Funny fact, when we first started spending time with the Morgans and Morris’, Kaylee was around 3 years old. The same age Ian is now. It’s crazy how quickly 7 years can pass! While Alex and I used to spend a lot of time playing games with Jayden and Kaylee, now their kids are playing games with our kids. It was humbling to realize this.

While there, we did some of the classics: went to Los Portales, Dumplins and DQ. Spent a Sunday morning at Elm Grove. Overall, it was a nice little trip. I’m glad we were able to go.

Here are a few shots from our visit.

Myrtle Beach 2, it’s hot

Because we have two young children, our vacation experience is a little different than a “normal” vacation. We tried to pick a few activities that would be fun for the kids and us. This can sometimes be hard working around two nap schedules. We also tried to do a few things as a group, these were few and far between. The stars had to align for our schedules to match up with everyone else. Besides all the scheduling business, once we got out we found it was HOT! Sunscreen and water were in abundance!

Before getting to the list, you can see all the pictures from the week here: https://www.icloud.com/sharedalbum/#B0h532ODWJG2C2C

Heres a list of all the little things we did with some pictures and a small description.

1. The Beach
On Monday we all made a trip out to the beach. This worked out well because the weather hadn’t been great over the weekend. Since it was a little butty, not many people were at the beach. Some of us played on boogie boards, others threw a frisbee, some a football, others laying on the beach. It was a typical nice day on the beach. I didn't even get a sunburn (which is rare!)!

2. The Pool
Alex, Ian, Clara and I spent a fair amount of time at the house. Of that time, Ian spent most of it in the pool. If you've read some other posts, you know that he and I have been spending a lot of time at the community pool this summer. He broke through a new barrier while at b Myrtle Beach. He will not jump from a raised platform without hesitation. In fact, on the last day, he jumped in the pool while I couldn't see him! Luckily, I'd already put his puddle jumper on! He will usually wait for me to watch him jump; not anymore, apparently.

3. Putt-Putt
On Tuesday Alex, Ian, Clara and I visited a local Putt-Putt shop. This is a popular attraction n North Myrtle Beach so there were several to choose from. The one we picked was the closest to the house. It was pretty awesome. We rode a train from the opening area to the first hole (Ian loves trains). The course was really good too! Ian is really starting to understand the concept of the game. We'll probably make a couple trips to our local putt-putt course sometime soon.

3. Boardwalk at the Beach
One evening we all took a trip to the boardwalk at the beach. This was a local attraction that had several rides and shops to visit. We got a couple good family pictures with the Skywheel in the background (more on that later). The one above is the first picture of all the kids together (now that Clara is here!).

4. The Skywheel
We really wanted to take Ian on GoKarts. We thought there might be some to ride at Boardwalk on the Beach, turns out we were wrong! But, we did get to ride "the giant steering wheel". It's obviously visible from everywhere in the area, Ian couldn't get his eyes off it! We decided it was a good alternative to karts for the evening. Ian had no hesitations about the ride, he didn't even flinch.

5. Go Karts
When we failed to find Go Karts at Boardwalk on the Beach, we went looking for them. Now, this was a little dramatic because the go-kart place requires that all riders are at least 3 ft tall. When we noticed this, we start talking to Ian about standing on his tip-toes. We had him trained to immediately go to his tiptoes as soon as he stood at the height check. Where we bought our tickets there was a height scale, I asked if Ian was tall enough to ride, to which they asked him to stand on the scale. They gave us the thumbs down. I wasn't very pleased with that answer, so I brought him to the go-kart line anyway. They had to check his height again just before the ride. At this point, my brother-in-law, Seth, starts a riot. "let him ride!" Seth said, "Let that boy go!" another person in line yelled. This went on for longer than you'd expect. I could tell the lady really didn't want to let him ride.. but they did! Ian and I dominated the race.

While the guys were racing, Alex took the kids to some of the other smaller rides at the venue. We didn't stay too long, because, again, it was HOT.

6. Calabash!

On Friday Night, we all went to dinner in Calabash North Carolina. It's about a ~30-minute drive out of Myrtle Beach. Calabash is popular because many fishing boats in the area dock there. Several restaurants have very fresh seafood. Several of us ordered crab legs. The notable item of the night was Shelby, my niece. She LOVES crab legs. It was hilarious watching her eat them. We invited our Stepsister, Aaron to dinner with us. It was about an hour drive for her, but she was luckily able to make it. I'd not seen Aaron in a number of years, but it was good to see her.

We invited our Stepsister, Aaron to dinner with us. It was about an hour drive for her, but she was luckily able to make it. I'd not seen Aaron in a number of years, but it was good to see her.

Lastly, I put together a little video from the week. It's not much but it covers a little of our trip: