Wishing We Were Still in Vacation Mode


As you can imagine, once our feet came off the plane and set foot in Connecticut, we were back to work and back to the hustle and bustle of getting ready for Christmas.  Minutes have turned to hours, hours have turned to days, and days have turned to weeks all in an instant flash.  While I love this time of year, all the rushing leaves very little time to savor the moment.  If we're lucky, we'll finally have a chance to unwind  and appreciate the true meaning of Christmas on December 25th.  But before we can get to that place, presents need to be bought, gifts need to be wrapped, the house needs to be decorated, cards need to be mailed, and holiday parties need to be attended.  For a day that's about taking comfort and peace in knowing that Jesus, our Lord Savior, is born, we sure do get stressed out.  Each year I tell myself we're going to make Christmas simpler this year, and each year, we end up dropping the idea as we get caught up in all the buying hoopla.  It's a tough cycle to break...

Today I'm going to dedicate the last part of my post to reminiscing about our trip (which now seems ions away).  Besides the fabulous service at our hotel, we also had lots of fun memories going to the "Holiday Lights" at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden, pretending to be a firefighter at Discovery Place, and visiting the University of South Carolina's Gamecocks Stadium, where my husband did his film and video editing internship for graduate school.

Each place brought unique experiences to our trip.  The "Holiday Lights" at the Botanical Garden were gorgeous, and while I took pleasure looking at all the beautiful plants, my little boy took pleasure in watching the electric toy trains, eating at the hot coco and cookies station, and riding the tram car to see all the Christmas lights.    

At Discovery Place Kids, we found ourselves in a world of pretend where you could be a firefighter, a banker, a pizza chef, a grocery store clerk, a farmer, a doctor, a stage performer, an auto mechanic, and even a crane operator.  Each area had it's own building, so if you wanted to play firefighter, you could enter the miniature fire station, grab your firefighter gear, and head to the truck; you could also take calls at the desk.  If you wanted to play pizza chef, you could enter the miniature restaurant and pretend to make pizzas in the back by the brick oven.  You could also serve customers at the stools and booths as well.  Little Lewie LOVED this place;  I wish I could have taken it back with us to Connecticut.

Finally, we spent our last day traveling to the University of South Carolina, my husband's old stomping ground as a graduate school student.  There he did a film and video editing internship for the University Gamecocks; he also toured in a popular band for a while.  Memories for him were bitter-sweet as he showed me the Gamecocks stadium, the bars and restaurants he used to play in, and the old "band house" where all the guys lived...  He's happy to be a daddy today, but when he was touring in the band ten years ago, both he and the guys in the band thought they were going to sign a contract with Epic Records.  Band politics got in the way of the big dream, and like many bands, they eventually split up.

Here are some final pictures of our lovely trip:

Visiting the Botanical Garden during the daytime.

The fine detail of decorating...

Let the lights begin!

Captivated by the train...

Inside the greenhouse.

Electric trains everywhere!

The best museum on earth for toddlers.

All the little buildings and great places for pretend.

Ready to put out a fire.

Money!!!  (Lewie seemed to enjoy playing with money a little too much!)

Opening the vault...

"I think I'll buy this ketchup please."

Ummm...more money!

"Oh yes.  Can I have more money please?"

The little cafe/pizza joint.

Hard at work...(Notice how he wasn't willing to give up his shopping cart from the store.)

"I'll just throw this in the oven for a few..."

"I'll charge this battery for you!"

Okay.  My husband enjoyed himself too.

Yup.  He enjoyed himself all right.

Gamecocks fever.

Inside the stadium.

One of the beautiful classrooms inside the stadium.

My future football champ.  (Actually, not really.  I'm not sure if he's interested in sports yet.)

Lew and his former internship supervisor.

Words can't express how large this stadium is...

Nice for my husband to go down memory lane with his son.


  1. I love the picture with the lights and the family picture! You had a great trip! I know it can be hard to return to the hustle and bustle of reality. Plus you have the endless laundry to do and probably need a vacation just to rest from the vacation. :) I hope you are doing well. Make sure to rest this weekend and just have fun with the holiday. Have a great day my friend!

    Mama Hen

  2. LOVE that Lewie was able to share some of his Daddy's memories! So cute! Love the pics inside the stadium...very cool :) Memories that'll last a lifetime!

  3. How fun! That museum really looks amazing. Wishing you many vacations in your future!

  4. I agree. It's hard to not get caught up in the hoopla. I'm actually suffering from a lack of Christmas spirit at the moment. I think once we all go out to see the lights and such that I'll be more in the right frame of mind. It doesn't help that it's ridiculously warm here. And rainy. Ick. Funny enough, a lot of my friends are Gamecock Alums, too. And that stadium does look ginormous. Ahh..memory lane. Bittersweet. Anywho, love the pictures! Happy Christmas!

  5. It was so nice to see you stop by my friend! I hope you are doing well! Try to relax over the holiday! Have a great day! :)

    Mama Hen


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