The Barone Blog

The Barone Blog

Thursday, July 14, 2016

4th of July Rockport Trip 2016

Last year I hoped that our 4th of July trip to Rockport would become an annual thing, and we were able to go for a second year in a row (read about our trip last year here). We had a blast! One thing that was different - well, actually two ... We took our camper along this year so that we would sort of have our own space and wouldn't bombard my parents too much (but we spent majority of our time at their camper. It's bigger). And we also had Claire come along with us! Having Claire with us was almost like having a Nanny along for the trip. It was awesome! She would help with Walker and William so much. We were very grateful she was there to help and to join in on the fun. She also fit in PERFECTLY with the wild bunch that are my Mom and Dad's friends.

We arrived Saturday afternoon and started the evening with a delicious fish fry - Going to Rockport is really the only time I can indulge in some good seafood (Matt is not a fan of seafood). The rest of the night was spent hanging out and playing washers - Claire is now an expert at the game.
The next morning we woke up and it was magical vacation time to where we weren't rushed to do anything. My Mom and Dad were participating in the annual 4th of July golf cart parade at the park and we helped my Mom decorate the golf cart to look like Uncle Sam. It came out super cute! - The boys weren't able to ride in the parade this year because it was during their nap time. However, they did get lots and lots of golf cart rides in. After that, the girls headed out for a pedicure (ahhh) and then we went swimming at the indoor pool and made the most amazing hamburgers!


That night, we stayed up a little later and played a board game that we always called "bump" growing up (it's a lot like the board game "sorry"). We taught Claire how to play and had a blast. Later we went over to the other campers to hang out with the Rockport Peeps (Pawpaw was on Walker and William duty, but I think he used it as an excuse to want to go to bed early. And I was completely fine with that). We spent the night talking, singing and playing music. Matt brought out the guitar and started taking request.
On Independence Day, we really didn't do a whole lot now that I look back, and I am completely fine with that. I love just being able to relax and not do a whole lot and still have a blast.
Do you see Walker under the pillows?
Like last year, we didn't go to the beach due to the bacteria levels because we just didn't want to risk it. I was sort of bummed about it, because I know how much fun Walker and William had at the beach on Memorial Weekend, but we were just not willing to risk it (read about our Memorial Weekend trip here).
4th of July night we drove near the Bay and waited for it to get dark and watch the fireworks. I was so excited for the Boys to have their first experience watching fireworks. I was prepared with plenty of water, snacks and toys to keep them busy until it was time. When the fireworks began, I had a feeling that William was going to love them and Walker would be a little timid with them, but it ended up being the other way around. William did not enjoy the fireworks and ended up sitting with Pawpaw and falling asleep. Walker however, enjoyed watching the fireworks the entire time.

On Tuesday (our last day), we headed to the pubic pool (the same pool we went to last year), and the boys had a blast. They slid down the slide over and over and over. Another good thing about bringing Claire along with us, she took a ton of pictures for us!

Walker ready to go swimming

Then Tuesday night ... The night I was waiting for ... We went to the BUTTERCHURN! So good! We headed back to the campsite and had a Bump tournament. Claire and I were partners and we did pretty good! We just had a blast and hated leaving the next day (as always).

The Boys were so great the entire trip and the more trips we take with them will just keep getting better. They are so fun, and we love every moment we get to experience with them.
We headed home on Wednesday and Claire went back home Thursday. We were sad to say goodbye to her too. I took off the rest of the week and we spent the rest of "staycation" relaxing and having quality family time.
We can't wait to go back to Rockport ... Hopefully it won't be too long before we go back!
We hope you all had a safe and fun 4th of July.
God Bless America!

The Barones

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Gram and Papa Prato Visit from Washington

Gram and Papa came for a visit at the end of June and we had a BLAST! We played, swam, shopped and ate lots of yummy food. We always enjoy their visits and are sad to see them leave.
Papa and Gram arrived late Thursday evening and left Monday afternoon.
Friday I still had to go to work for a bit, but met up with everybody after lunch (they had also gone to the park that morning). The boys napped and then we went swimming. We discovered that Walker loves to swim as long as he has his own floaties and can basically do it on his own (Mr. Independent). William on the other hand doesn't want to be in the water without you holding him - just another example of how opposite their personalities are and their personalities shine through in so many different ways.

That night I made spaghetti and salad that tasted just like Olive Garden's salad (OMG! It was so good!). followed with playing outside and jumping in the jump house. It was a really nice relaxing day and night. 

The next morning we woke up and everybody came over for breakfast and we started the day by going shopping for some Aggie Gear! WHOOP! That has pretty much become a tradition when Papa and Gram come to visit. We had a small lunch and then spent the afternoon in the blow up pool and that night we went to eat at my favorite Mexican food restaurant, Ninfa's. Their margaritas are the BEST!!!
Anytime we went anywhere, Walker had to make sure
he was holding Lynleigh's hand.

During their visit, William became so attached to his Papa Prato and the entire weekend wanted nothing to do with Mom or Dad, he only ever wanted Papa. Only wanted Papa to play, get him out of the car, or hold him. At the end of the night when they would need to leave to go back to their hotel rooms, William's heart would just break into a million pieces and would let us know it too.
Along with Gram and Papa's visit, we also got a lot of cousin time with Lynliegh and Logan and Aunt Kristen. We don't get to see them often. Lynleigh and Logan are two of the sweetest kids and Logan is always so sweet to Walker and William. And I always love to hear what Lynleigh has to say. She keeps me entertained. She went with me to the grocery store on Friday to get food for our spaghetti dinner and for breakfast. Lynleigh loves to assist in the kitchen and watches cooking shows all the time (which I think is the cutest). While we were shopping and going through the pasta aisle, she asked me what kind of sauce I was going to get for the spaghetti. I told her that I don't like to get sauce out of the can, that I like to make my own sauce. She then followed that with "now you're thinking like a Chef". and then continued telling me about people on a cooking show that she likes to watch. Cracked me up. I am thinking that girl is going to be a gourmet Chef one day.
On Sunday morning I made breakfast and then we all headed to Academy. Papa and Gram bought floaties for the boys and like I said, Walker has been loving to be able to "swim on his own". We followed that up with more eating and I took them to Kreuz BBQ - Kreuz is originally from Lockhart (I'm proud of my hometown BBQ) and they opened up a Kreuz in the BCS area about 2 years ago, so I was excited to have them try some of my "hometown" BBQ. I also am convinced that I gained about 10 pounds during their visit. When we got back it was nap time and then we went swimming again and Walker was so excited to try out his new floaties in the pool.
Ready to swim.

OBSESSED with his new floatie

That night we followed up with pizza for dinner and then it was time for the boys and I to say goodnight and goodbye to Gram and Papa since we would have to go to school and work the next day. It was sad saying goodbye and William was super upset too.
I wish I would have taken more pictures from the week, but I guess I was too busy enjoying myself as well.
Papa and Gram, we can not wait for you to visit again and we hope to see you both really soon.
We love you! Thank you for such a wonderful visit.