Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Our Vacation to the Great Smoky Mountains

 OK so every vacation typically starts with a bit of planning and packing right?  Yep, here it is for everyone to see.  This is the mess that eventually becomes organized outfits. 
 We had a last minute opportunity to leave a bit early by a few days so we did what any sane human does- WE LEFT QUICK!!  Before we could leave though we noticed this....what is it you ask?  Ummm.......water damage in the boys' bedroom.  Lovely right?  OK so pull everything out, pull up the carpets, get the fan going, and find it is not the bathroom leaking, but water from the outside.  Great......trying to figure out the how's and why's this week.  Oh yes lots of fun!
 So I am a matching freak, fanatic, fun loving mommy who loves to keep track of the kids while we are out.  So this year we had 2 matching shirts- our Got Love? as well as Live, Love, Loud- Thanks Kryste!!!  The other days I decided to do matching colors every day (yes you read that right- every day).  So we had orange, brown, white, red, etc.  We did not however take enough clothes for the whole time we were gone.  That is way too many clothes!!!! 
 How did we pack the car you ask?  Well, let's be honest really we drive a bus- albeit a 15 passenger van.  We took out the last row, crammed and squished had our kids get close and love each other in 3 rows of 3.  Which meant that car seats were a bit snug, but Abigail as always is between the babes and since she is tiny in the waste anyway it works. 
 So after hours of throwing things here and there- and yes THERE IS A LIST!!! 
 WE had packed up the whole house!!  Ok it just seemed that way.  I packed enough food for about 10 meals worth minus the fresh things for evenings, as well as enough food for all the breakfasts we would be there- cereal, oatmeal, and even a few pop tarts for the last day that we would be coming home.  6 outfits each, water shoes, swimsuits, towels, hygiene stuff, baby food for the whole time, Mt. Dew of course, enough snacks for the whole time there keeping in mind all the hiking we would be doing, plenty of juice, diapers, wipes, books and quick easy things for the kids to keep occupied (in case of rain- although it only rained once while we were there), 2 back packs- for the 2 little twins, small stroller, and the kitchen sink.  Ok so maybe not the kitchen sink, we left that behind :)
 Whew!  HERE WE ARE (this is the next day by the way)- After getting up at 5:30 AM Singing plenty of Mandisa, Bekah Shae, Alison Krauss, Nylons, Buddy Holly, Lion King, Oldies, and so much more, eating at McDonald's, running through the parking lot, doing finger exercises, shoulder circles, eating at Chick-fil-A, playing follow the leader in their outside seating area, getting red Fanta drinks at the gas station, granola bars, plenty of other junk food, we arrived around 9PM!!! 
**This is our bay window in our bedroom :)  Ahhhhhh...........

Seeing the familiar sites of the area like the HUGE cross, shops, the mountains.....just made us go- Praise the Lord!!!!  It is time for FAMILY!!! 
 The following pictures are of "the sinks" at the Great Smoky Mountain National Park- our home away from home for the next 2 weeks!!!!! 
 Awww....the twins fell asleep.......too cute!!!!!  **and yes I put Michael up in his seat to rest his head, but babies? 
*** This is an excerpt from my hand written journal that I don't use very much any more, but since we had no internet except our phones while we were away I had to write somewhere ;). 
 There is something peaceful about the Mountains.  They pull you close and make you remember God is in control.  Like the ocean waves that forever roll.  The mountains rise up in majesty more grand than any castle.  They cry out protection over you.  as you climb them they give you time to draw close to the Maker.  Oh Glorious and Wonderful God You Are Greatly To Be Praised!
 After getting settled we found out there was a piano in our cabin and Jason has started playing.  Something I have not heard him do for quite a long time.  :)
 **Sugarlands information center.
 **Catarac Falls
 I truly feel as though God sent us here to heal our family, our marriage, and to remember who we are as a family!  What makes us tick and how much we really do love each other!  I pray God will reveal Himself to us in a REAL WAY! 
 This my friends is why we love our vacation time!  It is NOT about the money spent, but about memories, a new surrounding.  A time just with family!!!
 Lots and lots
 and lots and lots
 of time to PLAY together!
 To laugh, talk, listen, and enjoy each other.  To remember that God has knit us together!
 God Himself has ordained our family, but if we forget how to play together or how to be a family and show that unconditional love.....we could lose it all.  That would be a HUGE mistake! 

Vacations don't fix families, but GOD GIVES US REST!  That rest helps restore our relationships.  This last year and a half have come with lots and lots and lots of change.  We have needed a REAL BREAK for a while. 

PRAISE GOD for time away and together!


  1. Hey woow lots of photo of little children :) And I wonder about little children who just start to school? So here maybe you want to take a look at my first storybook written and illustrated by me for those children who just started to school :)

  2. I added a lot more books to my give away on my blog for girls. Please stop by. These are all new books and I need to clean out my closet!

  3. Thanks for the link, I'll take a look at this website :)