NC – Part II

Part II of our trip began with a nice breakfast with Syble before we headed down to Wilmington.  We had two cars and about two hours to drive.  I offered to drive Stacy’s car (since she’d driven all the way down and would have to drive back) and Zach and Isaac drove in our rental car.

We arrived in Wilmington and got settled into our hotel.  We were staying in a place with a kitchen, but we decided we wanted pizza for dinner, we also had a geocache we wanted to do.

We found our first geocache near the Wilmington airport.  We also picked up a GeoCoin that we decided to bring back to Colorado and hide in a cache here.

We really enjoyed this experience and decided we’d have to do a few more while we were in NC.  After finding the cache we decided to go to downtown Wilmington and grab some pizza at A Slice of Life.  It was darn good pizza!  We then wandered around the boardwalk as the sunset.

The next day was beach day.  Even though the weather was cool and cloudy, we decided to check out the beach.  The forecast didn’t look great for the remainder of our trip, so it didn’t seem like it would matter.  We packed a lunch, but didn’t bring our swim gear because we figured it was too cold anyway.

Well, Isaac had other plans.  He made a bee line for the waves and promptly sat down.

After a few minutes of him playing, Zach headed back to the hotel to get towels and dry clothes for Isaac.  We did eat a picnic on the beach and play a bit, but it was so windy and pretty darn cold.

We went back to the hotel for nap time, which we all seemed to need.  Then Zach wanted Seafood for dinner, so we found a place to go.  The place he chose had a patio right on the water where we ended up eating.  Both Stacy and I got the Coconut Chicken and man, it was soooooo GOOD!  I’d eat there every day if I could.  Delightful!  Zach got some soft shelled crab or something like that and really liked it too.

The next day we had many things to get done.

First, we stopped by the library to find a geocache.  It took us forever to find because we were looking IN the library, and it was really outside the library.  Oops!

Then we headed down to the USS North Carolina.

It is an old WWII Battleship that I’ve always wanted to see.  We spent a lot of our day there.  We figured we easily walked about two miles just on the ship.

Next stop was the tea room in old Wilmington that we’d seen on the first night and Stacy really wanted to go to.  We had brought everything for lunch, except for a knife to spread the PB and J, so we decided to go all in at the tea room and have “tea.”  Isaac got a fruit cup and sandwich and the rest of us share a full tea with fruits and bite sized sandwiches and cream tea and brownies.

Next up was geocaching.  We had looked up this cache on the campus of University of North Carolina at Wilmington.  So we headed that direction.  By now, I have to pee really bad, but we haven’t seen a place to go, so we just keep heading to the cache.  We get out of the car and wander around, but I’m the GPS person and I couldn’t concentrate I had to pee so bad, so we all jump back in the car with a mission to find a rest room.  We pull up next to a cop in a parking lot and ask him where the nearest public restroom is and he just tells us to go into any building, they all have restrooms.  Ahhh!  After a bit more driving (in what seemed like circles) we find the Student Center which have very nice bathrooms, which is good, because by now, Stacy needs to go to.

After our bathroom break, we decided to go back and look for our geocache, but we kept running into this fence and couldn’t find a way around it.  So we gave up and went back to the hotel for dinner and a rest.  After dinner we read up on our geocache and found that the description provided a parking location.  Armed with this new information we headed back out.

This time, we found a gate into a nice little preserve.  It was a beautiful walk and Isaac even enjoyed it.  We found the cache near a little lake.  We didn’t stay too long because it was twilight, in the trees, near a lake, which meant lots of mosquitos!

Back at the hotel, Isaac got to enjoy a sink bath before bed.

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NC – Part I

Our trip to NC can be split nicely into three different parts…mainly based on who we were around.

Part I – Raleigh/Fayetteville and Syble

We chose to fly to Raleigh is the only city in NC we could get a direct flight to and it happened to be a little cheaper, so we went with it.  It was a 3 and a half hour flight with about 4 hours total on the airplane.  Isaac didn’t sleep a wink, but we were lucky enough he didn’t fuss too much either.  I think we had about 2 – 20 second meltdowns.

We arrived and got a rental car….that was fun….three bags, a carseat, a pack n play and a kid on a shuttle bus to the rental car place.  Haha!  We got better at that later, but that first trip we were a mess!  We called my sis to see where she was.  She was driving down to meet us from VA.  She didn’t know where she was and we didn’t know how long it was going to take us to get to the highway she was on, so we decided to call each other when we got to a certain exit.  Turns out we got there first, about three minutes before her.  What perfect timing!  We ate dinner before the last leg of the trip into Fayetteville.

Zach’s great Aunt Syble lives in Fayetteville and we were staying with her for the first few days.  She made just Banana Puddin’, which was oh-so-good!  We spent an hour or so talking and then headed to bed.

On Friday, Syble made us all breakfast and then sent us on our way.  We drove back to Raleigh area to go to Duke.  If you know my husband, you know he is a HUGE Duke fan, but had never been to the campus, so it was kinda a must as we were so close.

The campus is beautiful.  I love the stones they use to build everything.  We stopped at Cameron Stadium.  Unfortunately, it was graduation weekend and they had the floor covered and chairs set up, but he still got to go there.  We also made a stop at the gift store, and Isaac pretented to play ball on the practice court.

For lunch we had to go to Pita Pit.  Pita Pit is one of our favorite places and happen to only be on/near college campuses.  So we drove the 10 minutes to Duke’s rival the University of North Carolina.  Which is also a beautiful campus.

Before we headed back to Fayetteville, we stopped by our first ever geocache.  It was a virtual cache, which means there is no container or log book to sign, it is just a place….in this case a historic site.  Of the biggest surrender of the Civil War.  Really a pretty cool story and a fun place to take pictures.

When we got back home Syble had dinner waiting for us.  Her daughter joined us for a delicious, relaxing dinner.

We spent Saturday relaxing and hanging out with Syble.  She really is a great lady with lots of stories to tell.  We love hanging out with her and really wish she lived closer so we could see her more often.

Geocaching

Next up is our trip to North Carolina, but first we have to cover Geocaching, as some took place in NC.

I’d heard about geocaching years ago, but it didn’t really stick with me.  It surfaced again last summer, I checked out the site (www.geocaching.com) by Groundspeak and was intrigued, but again, it didn’t stick.  I don’t know why I suddenly thought about it again…oh wait….yes, I do.  I was watching an episode of One Tree Hill and the Aunt takes the kid on treasure hunt around town.  I thought, that would be fun and then remembered geocaching and so decided to look it up.

As with any new adventure, I wanted to share it with my sister.  And since she would be joining us in just a few weeks in NC, I thought it was the perfect time to jump right in.  So I found a few caches in North Carolina and sent the GPS coordinates to our Garmin.

I will tell in more detail about each find later, but for now will just say, Geocaching is a great family outdoor activity….I highly encourage everyone to do it.  And as for the GPS, we’ve had more success just looking at the satellite map on Google, so you can even do it on a tight budget.  And what’s better than hanging with your family, working towards a common goal and being active all at the same time?

Blogging

I haven’t been such a good blogger lately.  I could make a million excuses, but who really wants to hear them-not me.  And in fact, it doesn’t matter WHY I haven’t been blogging, but that someday, when I go back and read my blog, I will be missing huge chunks of time.

So, I have some blogs to go “back” and do.  Mainly, I want to get our vacation done in the near future, but before I get to that, let’s talk about my munchkin. 🙂

Isaac is 17 months old.  He reminds me every day why I always said the age between 1 and 2 was my favorite.  Each age is amazing and has it’s own wonder and challenges, but this age they are so explorative and are constantly learning and applying that knowledge and learning how to effectively communicate with others.

Some quick random facts about Isaac:

  • He loves water, especially the ocean.
  • He loves balls and rocks.  They are good for throwing.  Last night he was throwing one of his big balls up, just a bit, so it would land back in his arms.  He also likes to dribble them around the house.
  • Hats are another favorite, especially Daddy’s hats.  He thinks it is very funny to put a hat on the one of the dogs backs and watch them walk around.
  • He loves his doggy friends.  I really don’t know what he would do without them.  He follows them around, kisses them, snuggles them and tells the to go upstairs (with his hand) when he is eating.  Sometimes the dogs don’t quite understand him, but it’s attention.
  • Trees….Isaac loves trees.  I’m thinking he is an outdoorsy type of guy.  We went on a hike last weekend and he was so happy to get to touch all the trees.  Normally he points to them and hopes we let me get close enough to touch them.
  • Reading books.  The other day, Zach searched the house for Isaac.  He wasn’t downstairs, there aren’t many places to hide, so he went upstairs.  The bathroom was open and the lights were out, but no Isaac.  No Isaac in his room or our room.  Zach asked the dogs where he was.  They just stood there, pretending to want in their bed in the closet.  Mild panic sets in, as Zach opens the closet door and finds Isaac sitting in the dogs bed, which his blanket all wrapped around him and a book inhis hand – not that he could see it in the dark.
  • He likes to “talk” on the phone and sometimes random animals.
  • Isaac has 11 teeth.  I don’t really know when that happened, he won’t really let me look in there all too often.
  • He loves cheese, grapes, and chocolate.  He also eats a lot of goldfish, PB&Js and MultiGrain Cheerios with Milk.
  • He knows how to use both a fork and spoon, but gets frustrated by not getting enough food sometimes.  I guess it’s kinda like me and chopsticks.

And what’s a post without a video or photos?