We drove the four and a half hours north to Isle of Palms, South Carolina on November 21st which was a Saturday. Andrea reserved a small house for us and with the pandemic this year it was just us. We definitely missed having family to celebrate with, but we are thankful that everyone in our family is safe and healthy at this point.
We brought both of the kid's bikes and surprisingly didn't have the car as packed as we have in the past. The rental came with some bikes, but the kids do better with their own bikes and it's not too hard to just bring two. I worked during the week, but I've recently gotten some travel-friendly equipment so my work gear is much more compact. Since we weren't sharing the house with anyone we didn't need to bring air mattresses or anything like that. The drive was pretty simple and we stopped at a new charger that was pretty fast, thankfully not a lot of traffic.
We arrived, unpacked, and got some pizza and spaghetti delivered from Luke and Ollie's which is one of our faves.
On Sunday morning before tennis, Paige and I went for a walk and I snapped a pic of her in front of the house and on one of the trails nearby.
Since the daily clinics are still not being offered, Andrea arranged a green dot private lesson in the mornings for Paige and the rest of us did a group lesson together. Andrea, Connor and I had Jessie most of the days and Paige had her private lessons with Patrick. Connor has gotten to be a strong player and we were pretty worn out after our hour and a half. It would have been nice to play with other people, but it was neat that we had such a high level of tennis with just our family.
On the day of Thanksgiving, we set up our tripod and snapped a few family photos together in the house and then went to Coastal Provisions for our Thanksgiving meal reservation.
Our reservation was for noon and we were a little nervous that we would get an outdoor table since we only eat at restaurants when we can eat outside. We planned to take the food to go if the weather was awful or if we couldn't get an outside table. When Andrea set up the reservation she was told that they couldn't guarantee a table, but I think we were the first ones to show up on Thanksgiving. The table was in a nice covered area by the hotel pool and while we were a little disappointed that they didn't do any special decorations for Thanksgiving, the meal was amazing.
After our meal we went back to the house and I watched football with Connor while Paige played on her computer. We had a brief video call with Grandpa, Grandma, Alex and Charlie and it was nice to see them on Thanksgiving day.
The rest of our time in South Carolina was pretty relaxed and we got to spend a lot of time outdoors. The weather was amazing and was possibly the best weather we've had over a Thanksgiving. It was cool in the mornings but not cold. In the afternoons it was perfect for biking and pickleball. Our pickleball playing has improved overall, but Paige's pickleball has gotten crazy good. We had some unbelievable points and some of the other visitors that were playing nearby commented on how well Paige was playing. It is hard for Paige being the littlest and youngest, but she played hard and won a few times with me and with Connor. Connor is probably the best player in the family at this point and is so consistent and dominant at the net. Sadly we forgot to take any pics during pickleball.
We did take some pics and videos during our bike rides and walks together.
We drove home on November 28th and while it rained the entire drive home it was one of the only times it rained throughout our visit and we made it home safely. We are thankful for so many things and for each other. We all got along well and enjoyed watching the Grinch movie, the "Princess Switch" Netflix Christmas movie, and spending time together.
On our last day as I was tucking in the kids I asked everyone what their favorite foods were on the visit and I wrote them all down so we could remember.
Paige and Graydon have been cute about playing online together quite a bit during the pandemic. This past week Paige was telling me about her latest build that she and Graydon were working on in Bloxburg. She invited me to join their world so I could see it and I joined their server and also the Facetime call they had going.
Paige and Graydon went to their desks and I went in to their four story hotel. Paige had a large desk downstairs in the lobby and she checked me in to their fancy penthouse room on the 4th floor and then I took a tour with her. After my tour I went to the second floor to check in at the restaurant with Graydon and they sat me by the window. There was also another customer that came through and also was seated. We ordered our food and the kids brought me a few things to eat and drink. They were both having fun with their roleplaying and I love how well they get along. Paige has gotten creative within Roblox and actually paid extra on the "Welcome to Bloxburg" game so she could have advanced building and placement options available.
On Saturday afternoon, Connor's tennis team played their final match of the 2020 fall season. Their match against Atlantic beach was rained out a few weeks ago and Andrea has been working with their coach and team mom to get something scheduled for quite some time. There were six boys available for the match so we were able to schedule a singles match for everyone and a doubles match as well. The team won the match, winning 3 of the 4 singles lines and both doubles lines. The team ended up with a 6-0 record and was the only team in the 14U division that was undefeated. Unfortunately because of the way the league is setup, only the top 2 teams play each other in a playoff. While our boys had the best overall record they didn't have the opportunity to play the last place team so there were two other teams that had more overall games won because of their easier schedules. Due to this scoring system, our team technically ended up in 3rd place. It seems a bit crazy, especially since our team has won every head to head matchup and beaten every other team in the league including the 1st and 2nd place teams.
After the match, Andrea was presented with a thank you note and a gift card to the PV shops for all of her hard work. This was Andrea's first time as the team mom and she did an awesome job coordinating the matches, organizing the lineups, working with other teams to schedule makeup matches, coaching the boys during matches when needed, confronting other parents that were breaking the rules, and sending a lot of emails.
Some of the families went over to the beach and the pool to hang out for a little while and Andrea snapped a pic of the boys in the pool.
Paige went to the beach with Cailyn for a little while to
On Saturday morning we went by the club for a golf club fitting event. The kids were both measured and the pro Leslie determined that Connor should use between a 60-63" club and Paige would use 54". The kids got to hit a bunch of balls on the driving range and Connor determined that the 63" clubs were a good fit. We got them both a glove for their left hands and we are going to shop around for some clubs.
My birthday fell on a Wednesday this year and while the kids had the day off from school for the Veteran's Day holiday, I had a regular old work day. To make the day special, we went to lunch with Grandma and Grandpa at Nona Blue.
Connor missed lunch since he his neighbor friend Casey invited him to golf along with Wolfie and Charlie. They played a few holes and then went back to Casey's place to throw footballs around and chill out in the garage "man cave" and play with Casey's new puppy.
In the evening, Andrea and the kids gave me some birthday gifts and then we went to get our favorite banana crème florentine from JJ's. Andrea popped a candle in the dessert and we snapped a couple pics with the kids.
So thankful for my family and for another great year!
While Andrea and I were away at Sea Island, the kids had school and both had USTA team tennis matches. Grandpa came up to our house on Thursday evening and stayed the night with the kids so they could do their school at their desks on Friday and then be in PV already for tennis.
Thursday night, Paige had a makeup team tennis match at our club and played singles and doubles against Sawgrass.
On Friday, Connor and Paige had tennis matches scheduled at different clubs with their teams. We decided to try and simplify things for Grandpa and planned on only Connor playing tennis since it was at our club and was nearby. Paige's match was up at Atlantic Beach and obviously Grandpa couldn't be at both places at once. Paige had just played on Thursday, so we decided it would be a good idea for her to sit out on Friday. Paige realized that she was going to miss her match and she has been super motivated and cute about her tennis lately and was especially motivated to play after she realized it was the last match of her team's season. Paige called, texted, and Facetime called Mommy to beg her to figure something out. Andrea did some coordination and arranged it so Grandpa could drop Paige off at Gina's house and Paige could ride with them to the match and then Grandpa and Connor went to PV for his match. Both kids had very competitive matches and they both won their singles and doubles matches, so we're really glad that they both went.
After tennis on Friday night, Grandpa picked up Paige from Atlantic Beach and they went back to Grandpa and Grandma's house for the rest of the weekend. They mostly relaxed around the house and played games the rest of the weekend.