We went to England at the beginning of the month for just shy of 2 weeks. It was such a wonderful trip. The primary purpose of the trip was to celebrate John’s mom’s 70th and our new baby niece’s Christening, for which we were honored to be named Godparents. We did so much that I don’t really know where to start.
We decided not to rent a car, since Michelle and James would be off work as well and we figured two cars would be enough between all of us since we’d normally be going places together. That meant poor James was chauffeuring us here, there, and everywhere – but always with a smile, even when he was knocked out by a nasty ear and sinus infection, bless his heart.
We were fortunate that even though we were not that mobile, our friends from when we lived in Basingstoke – the Carters, Gemma, and the Roberts – were able to drive up to see us one day. We have 5 kids + one on the way between us all, so it was a lot of fun seeing each other and the kids and catching up on everything with them. The Carters are actually moving to Indy with Rich’s work in January, so we are so excited to be able to see them a lot more soon! Layla was funny, because she was not too bothered about me holding Maddie most of the time, but as soon as these friends showed up with their kids she got pretty protective, not wanting Mommy to hold anyone but her. Compounding the problem was apparently Rich and Anita’s daughter loves dark haired women (oddly, since they are all fair (I’m thinking something to do with her previous life)), so she kept wanting me to hold her. Layla would insist on being held, too, and try to push Sophie away, but it didn’t deter Sophie. I tried to tell them they were going to have to sort it out because they are going to be spending a lot of time together soon!
The big Christening/70th birthday party (M&M party! – Madeline and Maddie) was a great success. Maddie was Christened in the same church we had Hayden and Layla Christened in last year, which we found out later was the church where John’s dad’s grandparents were married! That blew my mind. I guess it’s not AS shocking considering it’s England and they have many more historic structures than we do in America, but it’s a fairly modest sized church and I consider it an unfathomable coincidence that Hayden and Layla’s (and Maddie’s) great-great-grandparents were married there. Anyway, Maddie did very well in the limelight, and our kids were also well behaved which we were happy about. There were plenty of M&Ms being consumed by one Mr. Hayden, as well as cake, so by the end of the night he was literally running/dancing around in circles with some balloons on a sugar high, but I’ll take that over a meltdown, right!
We did some other fun things which I will mention but try not to go into too much detail for fear this post will be too long. We went to a zoo with some of John’s college friends and their families, went to London with Granddad (unfortunate, rainy weather but Hayden got to see Big Ben which he has been waiting months for since it’s featured in Cars 2 which he was obsessed by all summer, and Mommy and Daddy got Pizza Express which they were happy about, plus London is so great that even if the weather doesn’t cooperate, the sites are still amazing, and last thing about it, it was Maddie’s first time out in the city and she did AMAZING – she only woke briefly to feed while we were eating and we didn’t hear a peep from her the rest of the time!), celebrated the evening of Madeline’s actual birthday in an Indian restaurant while an “Indian Elvis” entertained us, went on a grown-up night out with our friends while the kids spent the night at Camp Granddad’s (which they loved and we got glowing reports on them afterwards), went to Legoland twice (can I mention again what a trooper James is??), and sometimes in the midst of all this action, we even relaxed with MMM&J. 🙂
I think that’s enough for this post. I left out so much stuff, I might do another one to try to capture a little more but you are released for now. 😉