Twins in Texas!!

When the family reunion came to a close, Casey, Christopher, Michael, and Wesley headed home to Memphis.  The twins, Aidan and Taylor, stayed with us for their “week in Texas” that we started when the kids were just babies.  Living 9 hours away from your grandchildren can be tough, so we LOVE the week during the summer when we can spend quality time with them.   In the beginning, Casey would send two of the boys (at a time) with instructions on what needed to be improved (getting rid of pacifiers, sleeping in a big bed, potty training, using their manners, eating healthy, teaching them to read, etc.).  As the boys got older, it has evolved into Gary and me simply providing time for the boys to eat, sleep, and have fun.  It didn’t take us long to realize that you DON’T have to live next door to your grandchildren; you just have to be present when you’re with them.

Soooooo, after the reunion, we kept the twins (age 11).  I had experienced severe tooth and jaw pain during the reunion weekend, and on Monday had to make a mad dash to the dentist.  After 3 root canals, I was in bed for 3 days.  Not exactly an ideal way to begin, huh?   However, Gary became “grandfather-of-the-year” (if he wasn’t already).  He and the boys went to the movies, spent an entire day at an arcade gallery (and I mean ALL DAY), watched all the Star Wars movies, ate at all the fun places that only guys like to eat (Whataburger, Cici’s Pizza, Slim Chickens, Taco Bell, etc.), watched all the Karate Kid movies, played dominoes and cards, picked out and bought their funny t-shirts, and all the while, took care of me.  Honestly, I don’t think they missed me at all!  :).

    

   

After that week, these are the things that I now know . . .

  • Once a father of boys; always a father of boys.
  • You just have to make the most out of a situation and find the good in it.  (Actually, I’ve always known this.)
  • Casey and Christopher have done an excellent job teaching their boys to be kind, flexible, caring, and compassionate.
  • Gary is a “rock star” in their eyes (and mine).
  • When guys don’t know how to make you feel better, they cover you up with a blanket (and I had 3 of them covering me up).  P.S.  I remember my dad always doing that with my mother, and it makes me giggle just thinking about it. 🙂

I came to life on Thursday, so the week was not a total waste; however, when I took the boys to the Altitude Trampoline Park for a day of jumping, the first thing they said was, “Where’s Gary and why isn’t he going?”  Seriously?????

Summertime is a great time to recharge for kids and parents.  But, it’s also a time to recharge that “grandparent energy” and step out-of-the-box.  We find ourselves at waterparks (no, I don’t like wearing a bathing suit at this age, but I do!), at arcades, on scary rides and roller coasters, at jumping zones, watching movies, and eating at Whataburger (a favorite place since they don’t have it in Memphis).  Ava, Crew, Michael, and Wesley:  “We’re rested up, healthy, and ready for you!!”

Until then, carry on . . . ..

Reconnecting is Such Fun!

Cue song:  We Are Fa-mi-ly . . .

To say that our family is unique is an understatement.  We’ve been through what most families experience . . . births, graduations, weddings, happy and (very) sad times; however, one thing is a constant – we know how to laugh and have a good time.  For years, my mom and dad had a lake house at Lake Texoma, and once a year we would gather for a weekend of swimming, water skiing, eating, and reconnecting.  It probably meant the most to my dad; he loved good times!

After my mom and dad passed away, my brother, Jimmy, and my sister, Peggy, and I decided to continue the tradition.  And, so the Wilhite Whoopitup was born.  We have met every year in Pecan Gap, Texas, which is the town that I grew up in.  Sometimes, it was just family, but most times it was friends, extended family, people who drove by, saw the fun, and stopped to experience the tradition.

This year, we met at my nephew’s house in Argyle, Texas.  My sister and her husband are selling the family property and moving to Argyle to be near their son, Kyle.  Soap Box:  It doesn’t matter where you meet; it’s that you make the effort to be there.

    

    

The pictures speak for themselves; we didn’t let the rain keep us from having fun!!    

    

    

   

And, then . . . the annual Cornhole Contest began . . .

   

    

    

And, the winners are . . .

The adults attending are fewer (my mom was from a family of 10 children; my dad, one of 3), but thankfully, our children are producing babies faster than we could ever imagine.

    

Hopefully, our children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren (Sweet Will is the newest member – 2 months old) will continue this tradition and continue to enjoy seeing each other every year.

Mom and Pop would be sooo proud!

Escaping for a Few Days in the Piney Woods of East Texas

After checking our summer calendars, Gary and I decided we should steal a little time for ourselves and take a trip in the RV.  We decided on Tyler State Park, in Tyler, Texas, for several reasons.  First, I used to camp there years ago and was anxious to return.  Second, it was close to Athens, Texas, where a good friend has a dental practice (and I had scheduled a follow-up appointment).  And, third, I had an appointment in Rockwall, as well, which was on the way.  It seemed like a good time to knock a few things off our list, right?  Not so!

There were mistakes along the way . . .

  • We left at 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday for an appointment at 9:00 a.m. (only to get in rush-hour traffic and construction).  Duh!  Is there EVER NOT traffic and construction in Fort Worth????
  • We were driving a 31-ft. motorhome, pulling a jeep, and fighting a crosswind of 60 mph.  Is there EVER NOT wind these days????
  • And, the ultimate mistake . . . was commenting (after we arrived at my appointment), “Well, if traveling is going to put you in such a bad mood, then I don’t know why we travel.”  To which Gary responded (after several minutes of silence), “I think I have a reason to be a little irritable – anyone would be.”  Thank, goodness, for the silence.  And, yes, I apologized!!

It was uphill from this point on . . .

  • We extended our stay by a day.
  • The weather was absolutely PERFECT!

  • Tyler is about 10 miles away and is a beautiful city.
  • I made my dental appointment and ate lunch with two, dear friends, Jane and Tere.
  • Gary got his seafood fix.  (He said the seafood was amazing, and I had catfish.  Winner/winner!)

We had planned to return to the campsite and grill brats for dinner; however, I had forgotten the hotdog buns.  P.S.  I should have listed that under “mistakes along the way”.  After searching Google maps for a grocery story nearby, I directed Gary to the A&W Grocery Store.  I’ll ask you . . . do you notice anything unusual in the window?

    

Well, Gary did immediately and said, “I’m NOT buying hotdog buns in a grocery store that sells panties in the window.  They’re just something wrong about that!”  And, yes . . . those are panties; we checked.

If you love camping, you will love Tyler State Park.  If you love hiking, swimming, and boating, you will return many times for the scenery and the activities.  I know we will!!

    

    

Until then . . . carry on!