Saturday, June 8, 2019

11 years later...

So we did a thing. Justin and I actually went on a vacation sans kids. I know, shocking. I'm not sure that Justin and I have ever been on a vacation alone since the boys have been born. Yes, we have been on some trips together and some of them being to AMAZING destinations but it's always been work related for me. So this is a first. 

And it was for someone super special too. Our dear friend, Dawn, turned 40 this year in late May and wanted to celebrate her birthday milestone with some of her favorite people. She's been planning this for awhile and since the very beginning it has always been in Gulf Shores, which just happens to be where Justin and I got married 11 years ago. We were pretty excited to be able to head back down where it all started and get to explore a little more and see just how much it had all changed. 

We arrived without any delays and then we ran into a little issue at the car rental. We requested a convertible. They didn't have one for us when we arrived, even though they had confirmed our reservation. Most companies would get us in something similar or upgrade us for no additional charge. Not this company. But for a little extra they would get us in a soft-top jeep. I was not happy. Not happy at all but we didn't want it to ruin our vacation so we paid the fee and then headed out to get our jeep. Only issue, when I gave them the receipt to pick up the keys, they said they no longer had it. We had literally walked 100 ft to pick up the car and they no longer had it. It was a shit show. Turns out they gave our jeep to a family of four (who couldn't fit in it with their luggage as they asked for a 4 door) & their car to another family. Finally someone came in that knew what he was doing and got it all sorted out -- we were finally on the road.

We arrived just as the sun was setting & it couldn't have been more beautiful. 

Dawn and Nolan had rented the house for a week and friends were coming and going throughout the week. They had family and friends from NE that had arrived the same day we had, on Saturday, more family and friends on Sunday and then we would be departing on Wednesday as the last couple arrived. Eight couples in all---thankfully the house was massive, 8 bedrooms with 9 bathrooms, don't get me started on the obscene kitchen. The house was perfect, it even had it's own pool which is perfect for me because I am not the biggest salt water fan -- something about getting wet sand in places it shouldn't be. 

For the next 4 days we lounged by the pool, we hung out at the beach, we drove around with the top off on the jeep and we even went zip-lining.

On Monday even we decided to head out to Flora-bama. When we got married our guests and families visited Flora-bama BUT we didn't. We went out that evening, just the two of us, to dinner while everyone else visited the infamous bar. Eleven years ago it was ONE bar, now it's like 4-6 different bars on both sides of the street. We dined by the water while listening to someone who sounded a whole lot like Chris Stapleton, I could have listened to him all night but we decided to cross the road to the main bar area. More live music was happening and on two separate stages. Honestly, it wasn't as busy as I thought it would have been but we still managed to have a great time. And as we all know, Justin and I are not night owls so about 11:30 we headed back to the house and it was such an weird drive home. No one was out--it was almost too quiet but it made the drive home fairly quickly as traffic there can get out of hand quickly. 

We had to say goodbye to everyone late on Tuesday night as we had an early departure on Wednesday to get back home to the boys and as sad as we were to leave, we were ready to see Kaden and Logan. & when we walked in they had picked some beautiful fresh flowers for us with some sweet, sweet hand written notes--thanks to Emily.

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