Vernon Volumes text

Vernon Volumes text

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Connor and Paige stay with Grandma Alice and Grandpa Rick

Connor and Paige spent the weekend with Grandpa Rick and Grandma Alice while Andrea and I were in Hilton Head. The kids went to Sykes and Cooper Farms to do a crop maze and play outdoors with Grandma and Grandpa.

In Grandma and Grandpa's cul-de-sac, the neighbors all got together and did pumpkin carving (or decorating). The kids made some new friends and enjoyed riding around and playing with all the kids.

Grandma and Grandpa got them a couple pumpkins and took some pictures of the kids decorating them.

Both kids had a fun weekend with Grandma and Grandpa! I'm so happy they have family so close by!

Hilton Head weekend with Andrea

Andrea and I drove to Hilton Head for a weekend of relaxation and tennis. We were excited to do a bunch of tennis clinics and maybe do some round robin. We had quite a bit scheduled, but unfortunately the tennis was cut short on the first day. I was up at the net, getting ready to hit a volley, but the ball took an unexpected bounce off the net and then went directly into my left eye. I dropped to the ground, punched the clay a few times, then got up and walked off the court. Andrea helped me get some ice to put on my eye and then she found a local eye doctor that was open. We drove over and had a thorough and painful eye exam. I had a pretty bad abrasion on the cornea and the doctor also had to pick out green tennis fuzz with tweezers.

She put some drops in my eye to dilate it and while we were waiting for it to take effect she got ready to check whether my retina was detached. I asked her what would need to be done if it was detached and she started to describe how they'd use some kind of "nail" to anchor it back in place. I had to stop her at that point because I was feeling really dizzy and I got really light headed. I had to close my eyes for a bit and it sounded like Andrea was really far away while she shook my arm and said my name. Eventually I felt a little better and had to lie down on the floor for a minute to get my composure back. The doctor was very patient with me and once my eye was dilated properly she looked in it from all kinds of angles and thankfully said that it looked ok. I was terrified that I'd lost vision in my eye forever at one point, so although I was in quite a bit of pain and had to wear a bandage contact, I was happy that things looked like they'd heal.

We spent the rest of the day relaxing and ate some lunch and then dinner out. The next morning I went to Andrea's tennis clinic and afterwards went back to the doctor for a follow up appointment. She changed my bandage contact and checked to make sure everything was healing ok. She recommended I see a doctor when I got home to remove the bandage contact and be sure everything continued to heal. She put some dye in my eye and then took a picture with my phone so the doctor would be able to see where the abrasion was. In the picture, it's the crescent shaped area at the bottom of the cornea.

It was a fun weekend to spend with Andrea and we enjoyed our time together, although we didn't play as much tennis as we'd hoped. It was neat to explore the area and to eat at the local restaurants. We will probably go back, and hopefully will get to do more tennis together next time.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Amazing Grace Crop Maze with friends

On Saturday evening we met the Bunnell family, as well as Anna and her boys Charlie and Owen, out at the Amazing Grace Crop Maze. Andrea had found it online and it had pretty good reviews, so we decided to give it a try. We almost decided not to go at the last minute because of a small storm blowing through, but we drove out in to the country anyways and were happy to see that most of the rain had missed the farm.

When we first arrived, we ran around and checked out all the things to play with and things to do. With the price of admission you had lots of fun activities available and lots of cute decorations around the property. Everything was pretty spread out, so it didn't feel crowded at all.

Paige liked the huge pile of corn to play with. She spent quite a while rolling around in it with the other kids. It was a little dangerous because it was impossible for kids to resist throwing it at each other.

Connor's favorite thing to do, by far, was the big rolling tubes. He would run on them as long as we'd let him. He'd probably still be there playing on them if we hadn't made him stop. The kids liked to get it going and then would fall and tumble over each other in a shrieking pile of children. Somehow, nobody got hurt on it, which was a miracle, although a few people almost got crushed because they were walking on the tracks and not paying attention.


Before everyone left and it got too dark, we went to the big crop maze and walked through it. The kids ran in every direction once we got in, and it was quite a chore to keep everyone together. I wasn't paying too much attention at first, but after a few turns Andrea was worried we were getting lost and told me to figure out which way to go. Thankfully Chad had the foresight to suggest taking a picture of the maze picture before we went in. I pulled it up on my phone and was able to figure out where we were and I navigated our way through it.

After about 15-20 minutes we were deep in to the maze. Rachael was carrying Keagan on her back, Owen was pleading with Anna to carry him, and then Paige got smacked in the face by a stalk of sorghum. Paige was freaking out and crying and I was worried it had scratched her eye. I used a bottle of water to flush the plant material out of her eye and then we decided to keep trekking on. We didn't have much choice. Thankfully, in about 5 more minutes Paige said her eye felt fine and she was running full speed with everyone else through the maze.

We finally managed to navigate our way out, and somehow we didn't lose any children in the maze. It was pretty fun, but we were all pretty dirty when we arrived at the finish. Most of our friends left pretty early to get the young kids to bed, but we stayed around and did the kiddie crop maze and then we ate some hot dogs and a "walking taco" that was essentially a bag of Doritos with taco ingredients stuffed into the bag. It was actually pretty good, although didn't look too appetizing.

All in all, it was a super fun day and we're glad we went. Looking forwards to going back next year.

Paige's tennis at JCP

Paige has been going to the Tiny Tots clinic on Wednesdays as well at JCP. It's only a 30 minute clinic, but she enjoys it and works hard the entire time. Paige ended up as Queen of the Court for one of the games they played and was always competitive on all the drills.

I took a video of her doing a few of the games. I love watching her keep those feet moving. I don't think anyone else worked half as hard as our Paige!

Connor's tennis at JCP

Connor has been going to the clinics for kids at JCP and has also been taking an additional 30 minute private lesson with Scott L, one of the pros at the club. Connor swings the racquet so smoothly and he's been learning a lot and has been improving all year. I took a few videos while he was doing his lesson and during the clinic.

During the clinic, Connor was paired up with Geoff and they were a good team together. They ended up beating the other two teams, which consisted of older children, in the game they were playing.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

On Friday, we went to Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween party for the fourth year in a row. It's one of our favorite days to visit the Magic Kingdom. The weather was a little hot when we first got there, but it ended up being fairly cool most of the time when the sun started to set and it only rained for an hour.

The kids were in great moods and looked cute in their Halloween outfits.

Everyone had their favorite Disney snacks. Not pictured is Daddy's pineapple float.

Paige and Connor both enjoyed the Barnstormer this visit. Paige screamed her head off the entire ride after the first drop. Once the party started, we didn't have to wait in line at all, but usually they'd kick us off and we'd have to run back around to ride again. We rode the rollercoaster five times and they let us stay on without getting off once, which was nice.

We did trick-or-treating once the sun went down. The kids looked cute in the glowing goodies that Mommy bought for them. 

On Saturday we went to Disney Springs (previously Downtown Disney) and then ate dinner at the Disney Boardwalk.

At the Disney Boardwalk we rented the family bike and rode it around the pond a couple times. It was super hard on a few of the hills, and it was challenging to avoid all the oblivious pedestrians, but it was a bunch of fun. The kids were both too short to help with the pedaling, maybe next time they will be able to assist.

It was an awesome weekend and we're excited for the weather to cool off a bit so we can be outside more. We are all very thankful for Andrea planning the trips and getting everything together for them. It was a fun family adventure!