A Weekend Away With Friends: Hocking Hills

B and I just got back from a weekend away with the kids. It was our first trip since our summer getaway to Toronto and Ithaca, and it was our first trip ever with some other couples with kids. And it was a success! We all got (some) sleep, had good food and had fun on some hiking trails. We spent the weekend away in Hocking Hills, about a 3 1/2 hour drive from our house (longer if you’re traveling with 2 kids and one gets carsick about halfway through …).We got into town around 8 ish or so on Friday night. We had dinner with the kids and just hung out for a while talking after the kids went to bed late. We were beat – the car ride down had not been easy. LM cried for a good portion of the trip, FW needed to get out to go to the bathroom when we were in the middle of nowhere, and then LM got carsick twice. But we did have this pie waiting for us when we got there (made by my friend Anson).Saturday, we started off with breakfast. I had made a French toast casserole that we just had to heat up before the day began. Our activities began with a drive to Ash Cave and a hike to the cave. We hiked the Gorge and Rim Trail. Those trails were only about 1/2 mile or so, so we ended up walking a bit on the Grandma Gatewood Trail before turning around and making it back to our car for a picnic lunch.After lunch, we opted for another trail – this time to Old Man’s Cave! We hiked the lower falls and Gorge Trail, both of which were fun and not too hard to do with the kids – we had the little ones in backpacks and preschoolers with us at all times (basically FW was holding my hand as we walked up the tons and tons of stairs and anytime we were along the cliffs).Then, back to the cabin for nap time. We finished the afternoon with a cookout, complete with s’mores and the s’mores cookie bars I had brought.

These were pretty good 🙂

Sunday morning we had to pack it up and leave. But not before one last hike! This time we walked a little around the property. It was 80s and the kids were getting tired so it wasn’t too long of a walk – just enough to get out some energy before the car ride home.

All in all, it was a great weekend. Being around 5 children at a time could be a little overwhelming, but I would definitely do it again!

Questions for you:

  • Have you been to Hocking Hills?
  • Have you done a trip with other couples and their families?

A Stormy Weekend: One Sentence Per Photo

This post will be semi short (in terms of words), because we are still without power and internet. So in the meantime, here are some photos from our weekend, oneish-sentence-per-photo style.

We went out to breakfast for B’s birthday on Friday! The restaurant sang him happy birthday and he got to blow out a candle on a muffin 🙂

We had a date night and tried duck tongue for an appetizer. 

Friday night we had a SERIOUS storm hit our neighborhood. Our neighbor’s tree limbs fell on our power and cable lines. 

While we did have some car issues with the storm, thank goodness this was not my car (but it was on my street. There was a line of cars hit by a line of trees that all went down.

You can’t tell from the photo, but my driveway is between that down tree and the down power line in the distance. We were stuck in our driveway for a bit on Saturday.

That didn’t stop us from having fun at our block party! LM enjoyed some watermelon.

And FW and B did an egg toss (and lost).

Sunday morning included a 5k – we ran with the kids in stroller. 

And the rest of the weekend included buying ice (for our coolers, since we have no working electricity/fridges), cleaning up our yards and dealing with the electric company. Here’s to hoping we get power back soon!

Some questions for you:

  • What’s the longest you’ve been without power?
  • Does your neighborhood have block parties?

 

3x The Weekend Fun

What a fun long weekend! I wish it didn’t have to end. It was full of plenty of outdoor time, good food and even some work.

The weekend started with this amazing treat. Ham and cheese croissant from Stone Oven.

And it also included a pedicure and some reading.

Followed by watching the delivery truck drop off some supplies – B is redoing our back patio!

After much of the work was done, I took FW out for a short stroller run and we hit up the library on the way back.

We had our favorite pizza for dinner on the porch.

Sunday morning started with a stroller run – FW and I ran to the bagel shop again and brought home breakfast.

After breakfast, it was time to head the our favorite playground for a playdate.

Having friends with kids is amazing.

Then it was time to pick up some groceries. They had free ice cream samples!

And then we headed home for lunch on the porch.

The afternoon included more work on the patio and finding ways to stay entertained without getting in the way.

It was SO nice to also have Monday off and “sleep in” (as much as you can with a toddler and preschooler). Since the four of us were all home again, I took out FW for another stroller run.

It rained the entire time and I ended up soaked! But FW was a good sport.

The weather cleared up, and the afternoon included more work on the patio, and then we took a break to watch some of the airshow. Every Labor Day weekend in Cleveland, there is an airshow and tons of airplanes perform.

We then got in some quick playground time.

But then it was time to head home for dinner. B grilled for a nice Labor Day meal.

And just like that, our long weekend had come to an end. Between work and after work commitments, it’s going to be a busy week, so hopefully that means it goes by fast!

Questions for you:

  • Have you ever seen an airshow? My first one was in Cleveland.
  • Did you grill or cook out for Labor Day?

A Race, Shower and Birthday Brunch

What a busy, fun weekend! It felt nonstop with tons of activities packed into the 2 days. Which means that it was of course another weekend that went too fast.

The weekend started with a 5k race on Friday evening. The Sunset Sprint 5k is  a fundraiser for a board that B is on, and I decided semi-last minute to run it.

It takes place right next to the beach, so we had a little picnic and spent some time on the beach after the race.

And caught the gorgeous sunset.

Saturday morning I did an easy run and then it was time for my future-sister-in-law’s shower!

There were so many treats, including these amazing miniature wedding cakes that my mother-in-law made.

It was fun showering the bride-to-be and I can’t believe the wedding is just 2 months away!

I didn’t get home from the shower until late afternoon, so we really only had time for a little excursion with the kids. We walked to the nearby playground and had some fun while they ran around.

Saturday night, after the kids went to bed, B and I watched a movie. I stayed up for a WHOLE movie and really enjoyed it! We watched About Time – have you seen it?

Sunday morning started with a run – this time with the whole family. B pushed LM and I pushed FW in the stroller.

After the run, it was time to spend the later morning/afternoon with B’s family. This week is two of my brother-in-laws’ birthdays, so we spent some time celebrating with the family and enjoying an amazing brunch.

look how gorgeous this salad is!

FW and LM had a great time playing with their cousins and chowing down.

The rest of the evening was spent low-key – we did some meal prep, yard work, shopping and NAPTIME. Any day both of the kids nap at the same time is amazing.

Some questions for you:

  • What’s your favorite brunch food?
  • Have you ever done a nighttime race?

Summer Weekends Outside

What a FUN weekend in Cleveland! We had such a good time hanging out and doing ALL of the things OUTSIDE. That’s right, we had pretty much perfect weather and hung out outside from Friday through Sunday.

First, I was able to take off early on Friday and surprised FW at daycare pickup early. We hung out for more than an hour at his favorite playground and it was glorious.

Then, on the way home from the playground we picked up pizza and ate it on the porch for dinner. 

LM chewed on her crust for a while. She has been teething for …  months now? We’re still waiting for one of her top teeth to pop. She has had 3 teeth forever it seems!

Saturday morning, FW helped me make some muffins. 

Then, while B mowed the lawn, FW and I did some weeding.

That afternoon, we headed over to my friend Emily’s house for her son’s first birthday! LM loved the food. 

And their dog!

FW loved the kiddie pool.

After the party, it was nap time. Which meant it was time for me to do some more baking!

And when the kids woke up, it was pretty much time for dinner. We ate it once again on the porch.

After dinner, B built a fire and we roasted marshmallows. 

And since it was such a nice night, B and FW decided to camp out in the backyard. 

Sunday ended up being super low-key.  Nobody slept well Saturday night (in the tent or not), so we were all a little grumpy in the morning until nap time. The day included some meal prep, naps for all, and more meals on the porch.

And, a stroller run for the entire family! We hadn’t all run (the 4 of us) in AGES and it made me so happy to be out with everyone.

And per usual, we spent the night at B’s parents’ house, enjoying dinner with B’s family. They have a swing set, so FW got in some more swinging before we ate.

And here we are, back at our week. Weekends go by too fast, don’t they?

Questions for you:

  • If you had the chance to take a half day of vacation, what would you do with your time off?
  • Have you ever camped out in your backyard?

When You Have a Good Weekend You Start Monday Tired

Happy Monday! Can you believe the weekend is over? I’m SO tired after celebrating a bachelorette. I can NOT hang like I used to. I was out until 1:30 a.m. Saturday/Sunday … but I digress. Here’s a look at how the overall weekend looked:

Friday night I ended up missing out on some of the bachelorette activities and stayed in with the fam. We ordered sushi and had dinner on the porch, which was an excellent decision for a beautiful night.  Full disclosure – the kids had grilled cheese and tofu nuggets. BUT LM ended up also eating some of the rice and seaweed salad!

 

Saturday morning, B was out golfing, so we did some playing inside on our own.

But when B got home, we rode our bikes (I ran) to the playground, and then to the farmers market!

Later that afternoon, I realized both LM and I were in dresses  – so naturally we had to grab a pic.

But then it was time to head out for the bachelorette! 

We celebrated by having drinks, dinner, more drinks, dancing and more. Is there any better way to celebrate your future sister-in-law?

We stayed out LATE. I was out until 1:30 a.m., which was earlier than most of the crew. #feelingOld

But, I have 2 kids who wake up when the sun’s up most days, and staying out so late meant not as much sleep as usual. Thankfully, B let me sleep in and I got up just before the family went out for breakfast. B had planned to take the kids to pancakes  while I slept, but I have serious FOMO and had to join them. So, I ran to meet them there.

And then did a little run on the way home, putting me at 4ish for the day. Not bad considering I was out partying late!

The rest of the day was spent relaxing and hanging out. I even got in a nap when both kids were napping = win! But still — I need more sleep than that. Here’s to hoping for a restful week!

 

Questions for you:

  • How late is late for you if you’re going out? 11pm is past my bedtime…1:30 a.m. was LATE!
  • What’s your go-to sushi order?

Heat Wave

Hello from HOT Cleveland.

We had a super hot weekend, with temps in the 90s and “feels like” temps getting into the triple digits! That didn’t keep us from doing anything, however. We still had lots of fun!

Friday night the four of us went out to dinner at Aladdin’s, a local Lebanese restaurant. As always, the food was amazing. I love their spicy cauliflower!

It may have been hot, but we still had time outside.

Especially on Saturday. It was HOT so we spent most of the day like this. We had a birthday party to go to (Actually, it was a half birthday party) and luckily there was a pond to relax in and plenty of water toys.

AND chickens! My friend has chickens and goats, so FW loved chasing the animals around (or running from them … I’m not sure).

Sunday was another hot one. But I wanted to get in a run and had some errands that I could do while running. So, FW and I decided to get outside and get in some literal running of errands.

We first did a loop around a lake nearby that has been drained recently. We stopped for a water break (FW sprayed me with his spray bottle in the above pic) and then he took this pic of me!

Then we ran to CVS to pick up a Rx and then the bakery to pick up treats and bread. And then the coffee shop for coffee for B and then we ran home.

5 steamy miles later, FW and B were able to enjoy the treats on the front porch. AND B had made me breakfast!

The afternoon included some playing, baking and working.

B is building a fence for our garden to hopefully keep the animals out. We’ve already lost all our zucchini and tomatoes, but hopefully will get some more tomatoes if the fence goes up.

They made some great progress and hopefully the fence will be up this week!

We finished the day with dinner with B’s parents and some new cousin time.

Some questions for you:

  • Do you have a garden? What’s in it?
  • Are there deer near you?