Destin Florida Recap
I remember before getting married hearing so often wives complaining about their husband’s friends. I heard scenario after scenario of terrible friends hanging on for dear life and the wife scheming to cut the ties one way or another. I was blessed enough to witness my parents have fruitful relationships and friendships that were such a gift to both my mom and my dad and I thought “I don’t care what happens to anyone else, we’re going to have rich fruitful married friendships. That’s it.”
When I met my husband, I learned very quickly that there were two men in his life closer than brothers- Leigh and Alex. They met playing football at Stanford and bonded so quickly and strongly I knew for sure these guys were going to be in my life for the long haul. I’ll never forget my first weekend meeting “the guys.” They had taken over the V.I.P. section of the hottest club in Atlanta. I was 19. I got all dressed up, walked nervously up to the front door, avoided eye contact with the bouncer, handed him my I.D with all the faux confidence…you know, all the things you’re supposed to do when you’re trying to get into a club underage. To my horror and shame, it didn’t work and me, my new outfit and my poor 27 year old boyfriend went back to the hotel to watch the Office and retire to our respective hotel rooms for the evening. I was so embarrassed and felt the weight of the epic failure that was “meet the friends weekend.” Thankfully the next day after a few jokes we moved on and had such a good time.
I’ve been through a lot with this crew since that mortifying weekend 8 years ago. And I prayed since day one that these two great men would marry women that would enrich my life and give birth to babies that my kids would all friends for a lifetime. I’m so happy to report that the Lord answered my prayer with a resounding “Yes.” Between all three of our weddings, all six of these kids, all three of these guys going through their own personal journey retiring from the NFL, we’ve seen it all. And they still choose each other.
We’ve all worked hard to see each other at least once a year and no matter how much calendar shuffling it takes, we have always made a way. Last year, though, we decided to make our get togethers a standing annual trip booked a year in advance rather than a haphazard trip to one of our houses. For the inaugural trip we settled on Destin since it was driving distance for Leigh and Lauren who have a freshly 3 month old baby and on the same coast as the rest of us. We learned a lot from these 7 days (next time, we’re bringing a grandparent!) and survived things like a leaky beach house, two 2 year olds and all that entails, baby sniffles and a hurricane. We figure if we can go though all that with huge smiles on our face, we must be in good company.
Looking back on these photos, I’m already nostalgic for our time together and above all I’m just so grateful that the Lord brought a teenager from Denver, a teenager from Atlanta and a teenager from Canada to sunny California for college. I’m so grateful for the bond that they’ve cultivated over these last 17 years. I’m so grateful for the women the’ve chosen as their wives and for the gift each one of those babies have been. This trip found us with twin 7 year old boys, 2 two year old boys, a three month old boy and one 9 month old girl- I’m very aware that our kids will never be these ages again and am holding tightly to our sweet week in Destin, Florida with the family we chose for ourselves.
these two are such expert travelers, I'm so grateful for the smile they bring others around us...even when we have a five hour delay. (yes, that happened.)
We rented a beach house in the neighborhood Destiny By The Sea which could not have been more perfect. We were a one minute walk to the beach and while Hurricane Cindy rained on our parade for a couple days (literally,) we were able to utilize the pool on the days the ocean was off limits.
all the ladies on Father's Day
For Fathers Day, we sent the guys straight to the golf course first thing in the morning and we wrangled the babes all day. O is very anti-golf but he enjoyed manning the golf cart and hanging with his guys while they did their thing. We met back up in the late afternoon and had a bit of down time before heading out for dinner on the beach.
godbaby hair twin
little lady does NOT like the sand unless she's shoveling it into her mouth.
those sweet beach nursing sessions are my favorite.
We had the quintessential "perfect beach day" on day 2 of our trip. O stayed at the house while K napped and I just kept Oshiolema there playing with the kids for a good chunk of the day. Once she finally woke up, I fed her and raced to the ocean with her only to find that she has zero interest in being hit by the waves. I tried to let her sit in the sand and she cried immediately until she discovered she could scoop it up by the handful and shove it in her mouth. Needless to say, so far Keogena is just like her daddy when it comes to the beach.
We all realized we had denim for our kids and headed to the beach just before the storm hit for a little photoshoot. It made for some really sweet photos we'll cherish for a long time.
The middle of our trip looked a lot like this. Buckets in the living room and entertaining way too many boys through the hurricane winds and rain.
Once the sunshine returned, we lived on the beach and at the pool! I can't even recommend rash guards enough after this trip. Both my kids lived in them.
We're already planning our trip for next summer and you better believe I'm counting down the days.