Saturday, July 7, 2012

the stuff dreams are made of

Every June my husbands company, Edward Jones Investments, sends our family to a regional meeting somewhere within driving distance. It's always a great chance to make fun family memories, practice our "best manners" at nice hotels and fancy dinners and usually explore something new. This year the meeting was in Indianapolis -and boy did we wear that town out!!

On our drive down Billy asked me to call and see if I could arrange a group tour for some Edward Jones families to tour Lucas Oil Stadium - the home of the Colts, the NFL team my boys are currently in love with. In typical "me" fashion I decided to bypass the online tour form request and call the stadium directly. It couldn't hurt right? I was blessed to have a super friendly girl answer the phone and she put me right thru to someone who was able to arrange a tour for 50 people the next afternoon! My boys were so excited!!!

 We were in for such a treat...

We started the day off visiting the Indianapolis Colts's hard to tell from this picture, but Mason is excited. :)

Once we made it to the stadium even I began to think it was cool! :) Will's eyes were wide from the moment we stepped inside. He'd only seen the Colts Stadium on TV he was breathing the same air that Peyton had!

The view from the press box was amazing - our tour guide said that during the games all you hear up here is the clicking of computer keys. Funny to think that some of the best seats in the house are filled with people who don't even cheer.

We stopped to take a picture of the Colt's locker room not knowing that our super cool tour guide was going to let us go inside.
I could tell that Billy was starting to get excited now! :)

The boys asked THE question she must get on every tour she gives, "where was Peyton's locker?" and upon finding it my boys lost their cool. They were touching it, pretending to be getting ready before a game, talking football was hilarious. I made them focus for a picture and Will insisted on his game face!
 They were in their element and I loved watching every second of it.

At this point it was obvious everyone was thinking the same thing....
Could we.. maybe.. perhaps.. if we're really good.. go onto the field?

I have never in my life witnessed grown men turn back into little boys so quickly as I did when she said "yes"! The adrenaline was was game time. They were standing in the locker room, and ready to run out of the tunnel.
And run they did!!! :)

My amazing husband, being the ever prepared man that he is, had planned ahead and brought a football with us - just in case. As soon as our feet hit the turf the guys in our group were sprinting to catch the ball and racing each other up and down the field. It really was precious. There was no shame. This was a once in a lifetime moment for them to live their dream and they weren't about to let it slip away. Our tour guide probably thought she'd never get them off the field!
I honestly think even she enjoyed watching their unbridled enthusiasm.

Pretty sure I had to hold the boys feet to the ground during this shot.  They practically floated back to the hotel. For a moment they were professional football players - warming up before the fans arrived for the big game. They could taste it. Through Will's eyes this was simply a glimpse into his future - he loves football and can't imagine doing anything else someday.

For me it wasn't so much about living my dream as it was watching those I love live theirs. That's just one of the beautiful things about TRUE LOVE. True love isn't always about me. I can't think of any other way I would have rather spent the day than watching boys & Billy come alive.
 A day for the memory books for sure.

Friday, July 6, 2012

coming home

A few weeks ago I got to take these two little cuties on a trip. I felt like I was a professional courier with the most precious of cargo! Once our plane landed in San Diego these two would get to be with their daddy for the first time in weeks and more importantly their family would be whole for awhile.

Baseball has blessed them more than they ever could have imagined...but the realities of how hard it is were ever present in my mind on our traveling day. Madeline & Luke live on airplanes, out of hotels, and off the room service menu. These things are all fun when they are treats, but when they become your everyday you start to miss the basics that so many of us take for granted.

I knew they kids were beyond excited to see their daddy, but also a bit sad to be leaving the comforts of home that they cherish like many of us cherish vacation. I was totally caught off guard by what happened the next day.

I was only in town for one day before turning around and catching a flight back to Indiana. I had 3 little ones I left home with their daddy and a VBS program to race home from the airport to see. Steph and Eric were so thoughtful to plan a fun day of seeing the sights for me. We hit the Padres stadium, the famous "gas lamp district", local boutiques and a great coffee shop. Soaking up San Diego was a blast - a great change from the routines of mommahood. Then we decided to take the kids to the beach to play for an hour or so. They'd been so good all day (even with jet lag) being carted from place to place and they deserved some time to run.

Out of the car and allowed to play I watched this family truly come alive. They had been catering to me since the moment we got off the plane - when all this family really wanted to do was to "simply be" together. Hallie was asleep so I found a cozy spot in the sand to sit with her and watch the magic unfold.

The kids giggled as the cold pacific water hit their feet. They drew pictures in the sand and played chase. They let themselves go....unrestricted by time or location. 

They were together....a family...and it was priceless.

I don't think words will ever do justice to the joy I got watch them experience as they played together as a family for the first time in weeks. In that moment it didn't matter that they were thousands of miles away from home because all this family really needs to be home is each other.

When we first stepped on the beach we cautioned Luke to "be careful and not get all sandy" - we were in practical, traveling mode....

This is my sweet boy after 15 min. on the beach... living FULLY IN THE MOMENT - with all of watching in total surrender to the joy we were feeling. This moment was to good to be contained or constricted by silly rules that were torture to a little boy who LOVES getting dirty. So he rolled in the sand and we cheered him on. It was a beautiful, crazy, dirty moment and we could have cared less.

I got to watch this family get lost in the moment and it's a moment I'll remember forever.

They were together.

They were home.