Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Our Visit to Historic Charleston

Tristan, Dale, and Grace had a blast on our carriage tour of the city.
This is the cobblestone road made from English stones.
Southern Bell Grace with Tristan & Dale by the bay
Look! They named it after me!

Well, it was a fun but very quick visit to historic Charleston, SC. It was suppose to be a 4 day family getaway but ended up being just an overnighter. Let me begin.

Dale's job. His work schedule changes often and this week was no different. After already booking our hotel for the week, we found out that he had to be in Virginia on Wed. and Thur. Dale still had a demo scheduled about an hour outside Charleston, so we decided to join him anyways.

We drove into Charleston around 4pm and went to the carriage company first thing. We were able to take a tour via horse carriage through the historic area of Charleston. I personally LOVE history and archeticture so I was having a great time, the kids, not so much. I kept hearing "MOM! When can we go to the hotel to swim?!" It was somewhat enjoyable. Afterwards we got some icecream from Maggie Moo's (Best Dark Chocolate icecream EVER) and walked about 8 blocks down to the ocean. Grace had the blue Cotton Candy icecream...she had permenantly blue teeth afterwards. (Check out the pics)

We walked through the residential area and it was amazing. Money, money, money. Nothing was under $2 mil. and those that were for sale were $9 mil + Yowzers! One of the fascinating things about the houses was that most of the structures were original from the civil war period and they were wood. Cypress to be exact. I learned that cypress not only repels termites but also water which makes it perfect for an oceanside home. That explains how these homes are still standing too after so many years.

One of the streets was fit with thousands of cobblestones...very large ones. The tour guide said that all of the rocks came from England. All of the ships had to load their cargo holds with rocks to keep the top level during their journey to America. On arrival , they would unload and the locals would use the rocks on the road. The story is that the king of England found out what the settlers were doing and began taxing them for the rocks they took from the ship. Crazy, huh?

We ate dinner after our long walk to the bay and came back to browse through the downtown market. Lots of vendors were selling everything from hand woven baskets to "I love Charleston" t-shirts. Grace bought a southern bell fan (pink of course) and Tristan found a laser light that had over 42 different light forms...he was happy. We ate dinner at an awesome little place called Tommy Cordons. I had the BEST shrimp and grits ever...and I don't even like grits. I always try to eat what an area is known for. I'm glad I did.

The kids were ready to swim so off to the hotel we went. Tristan was a little anxious when we got down to the pool as Dale was determined to get him to jump from the deep end. We were the only people in the pool until one lone guy from the gym can in to swim laps. Tristan is literally kicking and screaming as Dale is trying to get him to jump in the deep end. After about 10 minutes, he decides to jump...onto the guy swimming laps. LOL I was shocked and mortified but I have to admit I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. Tristan took him right down to the bottom of the pool (9 ft) and the guy resurfaced with Tristan death gripping the guy around the neck. I can't tell you the last time I laughed so hard. The good thing is the guy was very understanding about the whole thing and very sweet. Thank goodness! We laughed and laughed about it afterwards. Whew...good times.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Flowers Galore

Flowers from my honey, Dale
Flowers from my in-laws: Sandy & Leon

I was very blessed this year for my birthday. I felt special in many ways but nothing says "I love you" like flowers....delivered! I've been trying to convince Dale for the last decade (yes...10 years) that flowers from Costco that he sticks in a vase from home aren't quite the same as professionally arranged and delivered. He's finally caught on and really wowed me this year.

My in-laws also did not disappoint with their own special delivery. I thought it was incredibly sweet of both Dale and my in-laws since I know they hand picked almost every flower in the bouquets sent. Yes...I felt very loved this year!

Last Day of School

Grace received a Super Terrific Kid Award
Grace & her buddy Grayson at their end of year luau
Tristan receiving his award for participation in Special Olympics
My luau princess

I'm not sure if this is a good thing or bad. Ok...probably both. Good for the kids...bad for Mom's everywhere. Last day of school. Tristan and Grace's vacation break has begun and mine has ended until the end of August when they return to school.

The kids had a great school year and ended on a good note here in SC. A lot of changes happened this year with the move from Florida and new schools, but they did awesome. I'm really proud of them both.