The crazy part was that our van was in the shop that whole week so I was worried that we wouldn't be able to go, but amazingly it got done in time and we picked it up on Thursday night. Just in time for the kids and I to set off for Ohio early Friday morning! (Unfortunately, Scot had to stay back and work.)
My favorite view driving through Cincinnati on our way there:
And our crazy crew:
We arrived at their house that evening (after a quick stop at Kroger for red velvet cake, flowers, cards and poster boards - I had already made two batches of Oreo chocolate truffles to give her and froze them ahead of time). We let ourselves in, hid our van, set everything up and waited in the family room for Mamaw and Papaw to get home. The kids were dying to surprise her!
We heard Mamaw's voice when they walked thru the door, and it was hilarious. I guess Brian had a hard time getting her out of the studio, so he had told her there were some people waiting at the house for her. She had no idea who it was and she was totally thrown off because she didn't have time to clean the house or prepare, so all we could hear was her saying "Okay...okay..." like "I don't know if I'm gonna like this..." until she rounded the corner and saw the kids. Her reaction was priceless!
She was so happy to see me and the grandkids - and to know it wasn't a big party or group of people she had to entertain on the fly! She was truly surprised, just the perfect moment.
We shopped around on Saturday and picked out some things for our August birthdays. On Sunday, we went out to a restaurant to celebrate Mom's birthday lunch with steak.
I love these cute and crazy three:
Monday was our last day - our big day at the Ohio State Fair. Me and the kids' favorite!
The big kids talked me into riding the Sky Lift right when we got there, which I haven't done in years. Now, I'll preface this by saying that I am very scared of heights, but I had remembered riding this a long time ago so I thought I'd be fine. Boy, was I wrong! I probably had about 5 panic attacks as we rode from one end of the fair to the other thinking I was about to fall out, but all the kids had a total blast!
I tried to focus on taking pictures and breathing my way through it. My riding buddy was Connor and his face made it all worth it!
Just look at the views:
Once we landed, I thanked Jesus we were all still alive and walking on solid ground again, and then we headed straight for the fair food.
The kids spent several hours on all the rides.
The giant slide. Hands-down, the kid's favorite. They went down it over and over and over again.
We love the Ohio State Fair!
It was hotter than Hades that day (literally), so slushees were the perfect afternoon treat.
We checked out some bugs and animals...
More food and shopping around in the outdoor pavilion.
Then, it started raining and the kids and I looked like wet tired rats. We started the long walk to the van and headed home.
The next morning on Tuesday (August 2nd) was Mamaw's actual birthday, so we surprised her with donuts and candles in the bathroom of all places.
Nothing like getting sung to while you're getting ready - Ha!
Unfortunately, we couldn't stay. We had to pack everything up and make the drive back to TN. (Thank goodness for Jake and all his help - couldn't have done it without him!)
Goodbyes are always the worst...
Our sleepy crew on the drive home:
We got home late that night, but Scot was so helpful to unload everything and clean out the van before we all collapsed in bed.
Such a great weekend to celebrate my mom's birthday and spend time with family. We miss Mamaw and Papaw already.