Friday, November 22, 2013

Summer Catch-up 2013

Turns out I haven't updated this at all lately....So, here is a large smattering of info for our summer adventures.

1. Adam graduated! he now has a masters of public and international affairs.
Adam's sister and her family were able to come up the week before graduation to spend some time.
 This picture is one of my favorites because CandyLand came down to Adam and his sister and they got kinda competitive. It was so fun and a little glimpse into their childhood.
 Brigs loved hanging out with his cousins.

My parents were able to come out for the ceremony and it was so fun to explore Pittsburgh a little more.

The building behind us is the Cathedral of Learning - 
a historic Pittsburgh building that's a part of the University.

His building

We celebrated at a delicious italian restaurant we love

We also went on one of those land/water Ducky tours.

And made Serendipity's frozen hot chocolate. YUM!

2. Brigham had his FIRST BIRTHDAY!!!!!!

During the day we went downtown to the Point State Park. It was perfect and we didn't realize you can actually swim in the fountain - otherwise we would have brought Brig's swimming trunks.

We had a few people over for cake and presents that night. While Brigs was digging into his car cake, a huge storm came to Pittsburgh and the power went out for our entire area. 

Even in the pitch black, Brigs still kept chowing down. 

The next morning I was able to clean up the spills and get a good luck at how much Brigs finished. He did an impressive job!

3. After some prayer and thinking, we decided to stay in Pittsburgh. However, we felt we should move to another ward on the other side of the river. So, we moved out of our 1br apartment. Even though we were really excited to have more space and a yard for Brigs, I still miss our little 1br. I mean, just look at the huge Frick Park right in our backyard. Brigs and I loved hiking in it everyday.

Brigs was even so tired one afternoon, he fell asleep.

Even though Frick Park is irreplaceable, it is so nice to have a tub to bathe Brigs in and not just our kitchen sink. ha
Oh, and he did love climbing the stairs to the third floor. 

4. A couple days after we moved into our new place, a great friend from college was driving through Pittsburgh with her family. They agreed to stay with us for a day so we could catch up and have our kids play. She has the cutest little girls! It was such a gift to have them and reminisce over old times.
We went to the zoo together:

The day was so hot and humid, that most of the aquarium was fogged over. Can you even tell what animal enclosure is in the picture below? You had to swipe the moisture away to see the penguins. It was really funny.

Brigham petting the sting rays.

Brigham and Lily

5. A couple days after our visitors headed home, we drove down to the OuterBanks for the Shields' Family vacation. It was amazing! Brigham LOVED the beach/the water/the sand and especially being with his family!

On our way down to North Carolina, we drove through D.C. and had breakfast with Adam's sisters (and brother-in-law, and nephew and niece). It was a final hoorah since the one of Adam's sisters and her fam moved to TX the next day. It was really fun to have them close the last couple of years.

Once we got to North Carolina, we stayed in a beach house RIGHT on the beach. 

The rest of the fam was there for a week before so Carson had LOTS of time to get extra tan. Carson is on the far left.

Mom also organized family pictures.

Garret requested the traditional pyramid pose. I was impressed we actually pulled it off.

While we were in the Outer Banks a couple dramatic things happened...First, there was a little drama on the beach outside our next-door-neighbors. Long story short....two men were in a knife fight and neither one made it. A double homicide! Crazy!
Second, our last day there we decided to rent some boats and tubes and stuff. It was a blast! However, on the last ride of the day, Mom and Garret were going impressively fast when they barrel rolled the tube and Mom's shoulder was shattered. She was so strong and handled her pain remarkably. She didn't even know how bad it was until she was home in AZ a week later and scheduling shoulder surgery.

 The whole family then drove up to Washington D.C. for a few days to see the sites. It was really fun to show them around a city Adam and I have grown to love so much.

 At the National Cathedral

 Brigs loves Stanton because he would fly up and down every staircase with him. 
 Brigham just LOVED playing with the entire family.

 After a few days in D.C., my fam came up to Pittsburgh since my siblings have never been. It was really great to show them around a little. They even were able to go to a Pittsburgh Pirate game and loved it. I do think it is worth pointing out that we had my entire family stay in our duplex with two bathrooms for 10 people. They were such sports! Also, I think this proves we have PLENTY of room for any and all future visitors.... (hint hint).

6. Adam and I both had birthdays, but I only have pics of my bday on my computer. So, I'll have to post his another time.
I definitely requested Brigham wears orange :)

We spent the day in Amish Country

Chinese food for dinner

 And had my delicious 4 layer German Chocolate Cake.