I keep thinking my friendship with the girls, the Posse, couldn't get any better. Already, this is the coolest group of women I know that I get the honor and pleasure to call my friends. But then, we went to the lakehouse. And I discovered even more love for them, their kids, and even their sometimes crass but hilariously funny husbands. It isn't even remotely possible for me to describe the greatness that was our short few days at the lakehouse. I'll give it a quick try.
A few months ago, Tracey emailed us that we should make good on our idle comments of "we should have a family vacation sometime" and make a plan. Not only that, she found some options for us. We spent three or four hours one Saturday morning with a fury of emails back and forth between the six ladies (well, Amy was copied but Trey wasn't letting her on email because he was hungry and fussing for her to hurry up and get ready to get out of the house). Fifty some odd emails later, we had a date, location, and a plan. We were getting a lakehouse!
Tracey and Rich were the first to arrive since they were coming from Austin. Not even going to get into the caravan fiasco/frustration of the rest of us getting there! My phone rang to Tracey saying, "Wait till you see this place." You know, that could go either way. It could be "Wait till you see this place because it's a complete shithole," or "Wait till you see this place because it is totally incredibly wonderful!" Thank goodness, it was the second. The house was PERFECT.
Our time just flew by. When I was telling others about this and how the women are such good friends, more than one person asked, "then why not just do a girls weekend?" Of course, let's be honest--six women with no kids and no husbands would be A LOT easier to plan for, cook for (well, the cooking seemed quite easy to me since I didn't do any of it), clean after, and general keep up with, but we knew that we had to make it all our families. We want our children to know each other. We want our husbands to hang out together. And we want to create these memories together. And standing at the lakehouse, I knew it was the right decision. At any given time, we had one or two kids circling the wrap around porch on little bikes, one or two on the hammock, someone sliding down the slide on the swingset, a few glued to the Wii inside at the living room, and kids grabbing a snack in the kitchen. The children were great. Of course, we had the obligatory meltdowns--have you ever TRIED to get a picture of 15 children? Especially at the end of the trip when they're all tired and melting down?
Here are a few Lakehouse highlights--
- Tracey's Birthday Surprise--"The Posse: Parents with a Passion" t-shirts made with all of us anxiously waiting at the bottom of the stairs. The pic on the t-shirt? From the 5K last year with Tracey looking like she's about to open a can of you know what on her sons! Thanks to Megan for the t-shirt design!
- S'Mores! Chuck Weintraub saving the day for all the children. Do you want your marshmellow done--Chuck will shove it into the fire for you (much to the dismay of Bailey Robinson).
- Late night parent swim--wait, are those heads in the window? Are they watching us? Crap, they are!!
- Returning from changing out of our swimsuits after the parent swim to see only four adults out of eleven still awake (we were minus one dad at that time who arrived late). All others were sacked out at 11:30pm, leaving just me, Andrew, Rich, and Amy.
- Teaching Amy to play poker--no, just because you have a Two of Hearts and an Eight of Hearts does NOT mean you have two of a kind.
- Playing Apples to Apples at 2am with a drunk Trey yelling, "Oh, you have Coconut!" Cue seething look from sober Tracey.
- Um, yeah, she was sober because--the night before? Not so much.
- Sugar Photography on location! Family photographer couldn't resist and photographed the Franklins and the Robinsons. Jen is AMAZING! She was even willing to snap a few of Maggie!
- Salty chicken. Really, salty chicken.
- Rich and Andrew practing their throwing arms--launching chicken into the brush at 2am after we noticed lots of bird left over on the grill.
- Fireworks! Pretty sure that while the guy at the management office gave us clearance to shoot off a few, he had no idea that they would be setting off some pretty big ones. Thank goodness for Andrew. And the fire extinguisher he had just in case.
- Men on one side, ladies on the other side of the fenced in pool. Like watching something in the zoo.
As long as this list is, I could go on. I could tell more things about what happened--funny, inside jokes, cute kid stories, etc. We're in the process of booking of 2009 trip. Tracey already found a new house with slighter bigger accomodations (same location, just a different house). Hopefully, this tradition will become an annual trip not to be missed. We'll plan our summers around it.
Lots of love to the Posse! You're amazing. Thank you, thank you to Tracey for orchestrating this entire thing--you are most definitely More than a Minivan Mom!
And now....for the pictures. Not even a portion of what was actually taken.Me and my man on our first night. I'm fairly satisfied with this picture given the fact that I don't have a single bit of make-up on.
Moms hiding in the little bedroom. Children? What? Go find your father!
I love this picture. She was mad at me for telling her she needed to keep her shoes on.
Sweet Bailey holding baby Beck. He was so gentle with them.
Maggie and her man, Megan's little guy.
Wrangling the children for dinner.