Sunday, June 28, 2009

NJ and the Beach - and not even at the same time!

As the Boig family continues with our "traveling" summer we have been a bit too busy to review and cut the video from Ireland - so Part Duex will have to wait a bit as we enjoy non virtual summer experiences.

Speaking of! The last two weekend have been fun travel ones with the "girls" (that would be Lilah and me) visiting my mom in NJ last weekend. We headed up after music class with Lilah being the perfect traveler and sleeping till she was about 20 minutes from my mom - waking up in enough time not to be cranky when we got there! After spending time running around the mall, running around the backyard (in puddles) and running around the house she finally crashed sleeping about half the way back as well. Fun and good travels were had by all!

Then this past weekend, the Boigs, Reiches, Eagle/Diamonds and my sis headed out to Assateague Island for two nights of fun in the sun (and sleeping on the ground). Lilah loved the tent which she calls her "little house" and loved peeking out of it and putting her stuffed animal to bed.

She also had a great time at the beach! And don't worry - we made sure she was fed and hydrated including the now infamous "Banana, + Sand eating scandal of 2009"

After a long morning at the beach on Saturday we headed back to our campsite to find the Reich's had arrived.
We attempted to wash the sand off Lilah in the smallest baby pool ever - but she was no cooperating and so Alexander had to show her how it was done. (for the record this pool now lives with Alexander's parents).

After every had a quick rinse off Lilah got to experience her first canoe ride! She was wondering and even wore her Spongebob Squarepants life preserver with pride. OK , so maybe we WERE lapped a few times by Beth, Darryl, Santiago AND Mookie - but hey they had an extra set of four paws in their canoe. Unfortunately with all those hands and paws....there were no cameras - maybe next time.
Then back to the campsite for some much needed rest and food. Lilah spend some time showing her animals around the camp site in her new and favorite past time of walking her wagon around and around and well around.
There might also been some photos taken of children/dogs holding EMPTY! bottles of beer or Mike's Hard Lemonade, but due to the fear of Uncle Steven calling DYFUS on all of us - those have been shredded (or only shared on a "need to know" basis). So you get this photo of a passed out Mookie instead - super cute.

Heading back to the beach the next morning after a tasty, although sandy, breakfast Alexander tried out his new "floating on air" trick to avoid any possible contact with the water. Then off to Big Al's Pit Beer (and turkey) BBQ and home to hot bath and shower and fresh raspberries off our bushes that seemed to have fruit overnight. Good thing Lilah loves raspberries!

Overall a great to weekend to mark almost the middle of summer. Up next...RNO (you will have to wait till the next posting to deceiver that!), 4th of July festivities, Bugs Bunny under the stars and more.

Get out, enjoy the weather, but always remember to wear some bugspray!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Ireland! Part 1 - The Photos

Welcome back to us!

OK so we actually got back LAST week, but it took some time to pull together our photos, get over jetlag and generally get ourselves together enough to put two sentences together and update the blog.

I split the Ireland adventures into two postings...this one for photos and the next will be video.

To recap, Ireland was amazing and Lilah was even more amazing with her laid back travel attitude and generally flexibility.

We (Mommy, Daddy, Lilah, Uncle Steven, Aunt Sarah, Bubbe and Will) left Newark, NJ May 30th on a 7pm flight arriving in Dublin at 6am local time (1am DC time). After the three hour drive to NJ and the six hour flight (of which she slept three hours) Lilah was ready for a nap in the car which she got as we tried to navigate our way out of Dublin, driving on the wrong side of the road and learning what a "roundabout" really meant.

Sleeping through our first stop in Glendalough, Lilah woke up in time for lunch getting her first taste of what would be a week of "chips" (fries). After lunch we headed to Kilenny where we would be spending our first night. We visited the Kilenny Castle where the above photo of Jason and Lilah was taken - can you tell we hadn't slept in 36 hours by this point! Lilah had a fantastic time running around the grounds of the castle, then to dinner and BED for everyone. The first photo is Lilah, rested the next morning after over 12 hours of sleep. The one to the left is right before heading to bed - can you tell what a trooper she was! (also can you tell how far north Ireland it that it stays light there till about 11pm......)

After some good sleep we all headed off to Waterford where Lilah showed off her moose to the Waterford bear as well as more "chips" for lunch. We then drove to Cobh (pronounced Cove). While the rest of us were amazed at the beautiful countryside, Lilah settled into what would be her MO for the trip - sleeping while we drive and being in a good mood as we explored.

And in case you are thinking at this point "Wow they threw her in the car and dragged her everywhere - poor kid." do not fret - Lilah got plenty of exercise time with her Aunt and Uncle throughout the trip. Running, kicking, throwing and sometimes even climbing on hundred year old rocks as you will see in a photo below.

Before leaving Cobh we checked out the last place the Titanic left before it sunk and got our first "Boig Family Photo" of the trip. You might also be wondering how come you don't see any rain - it is Ireland after all. Thankfully we have been told we had the best seven (out of eight) days Ireland has seen in 10 years.
Day three brought us right outside of Cobh to Cork and one of the major highlights of the trip - Fota Wildlife Park.

You may notice that these animals do not seem to be in cages - that would be because they were not. Only the ones that might eat us fully in one swoop were restricted with many of the rest free to roam about.

You can imagine all of our delight with this experience - Lilah taking it all in and loving every minute of it. She surprised all of us when - without prompting she yelled "Zebra" at the top of her voice point to EXACTLY where the zebra was. Amazing the things she remembers.

After Fota we headed to lunch and then over to the Jameson Experience which, after realizing we had to wait an hour for a tour, decided to purchase our goods and ditch the rest of the "Experience".

Which gave us enough time to head to Blarney Castle where Lilah got some good shut eye with Bubbe and the rest of us climbed up and up and up to kiss the Blarney Stone. (Full disclosure - kissing was only done by Jason, Aunt Sarah and Uncle Steven).

We also played a game of "Where's Waldo" with each of us popping out different widows in the castle to see how high we could go with Lilah still seeing us.

Finally heading back to our hotel on Day 3 (wow that was all one day!) Lilah got her first Irish bath. You would never know from this photo how much she hates baths - both Irish and American.

Day 4 was our scenic day of exploring starting at Drombeg Stone Circle where Lilah made friends with the rocks, while we debated if you could actually tell the time by the way the stones were set.

Giving new meaning to the phrase "rock hugger."

Heading out from Drombeg we hit highlight two of the trip - the Ring of Kerry. The most beautiful place I have seen in my life, Lilah woke up from her mid day nap long enough to enjoy the amazing sites...take the second Boig Family Photo...go to the beach...and then fell asleep again.

At least she knows her priorities!

Bunking down in Killarney that night, Lilah proved that naps do work as she climbed up and down and up and down the stairs of the hotel, while the rest of us were just looking for our rooms.

On Day 5 we started heading north on the west side of Ireland, stopping at the Cliffs of Moher on our way to Ashford Castle.

Lilah once again reminded us to save our energy for what lie ahead.

Being every bit as stunning as you could imagine (or view if you click on the link to the web site), Lilah got to be a true princess wander the Castle grounds, enjoying exploring the landscaping and sitting in the "big girl chairs" they had spread all around.

We spent Day 6 at the Castle taking in every activity and seeing everything that was available to us, but then sadly as it got close to dinner time we started our trek off the coasts of this amazing country and inland in the direction of Dublin.

Night 6 and early Day 7 spend in Athlone for sleeping and eating (yummy Italian) we headed out early for our last full day in Dublin. Unfortunately our last day brought rain, which did not deter us from visiting Guinness and Trinity College, but did hamper the photo taking for that day.

Getting to bed early to head out early, we left Ireland on Day 8 leaving behind fantastic people and stunning landscape but bringing home some great memories. As good as any toddler could be, Lilah held out well during the seven hour plane ride home playing and walking in between her parents - who only wished maybe she would get a tiny bit tired for a nap.

Getting home at 1pm local time (6pm Ireland time) the Boigs wished goodbye to the rest of the family and headed back to Maryland around 4pm. Lilah gave one big wave and then fell asleep at 4:02pm sleeping straight through until 4:02 am (she did think it was 9am so you can't blame her too much).

Speaking of sleeping I am headed off to do some of that right now. Videos and Part II to come later this week as well as an update on all the words Lilah can say and all the sassiness she can give!