Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Stripper poles, navymen, and babies.

Ahhhh... Hello there, friends!

I'm back after an incredibly relaxing week at the beach, and I have lots to catch up on!

To begin, rewind back to last weekend.. Not this PAST weekend, but the weekend before that. If you've kept up with my blog at all, you probably know that in January, we lost a very dear friend named Aaron.  His wife, Cheryl, is my sweet best friend.  On June 26, their sweet baby boy, Jake, was dedicated at church.

It was a very bittersweet day.  I'm pretty sure I cried during the entire thing.  

You see, not only was Cheryl offering up her sweet baby to the Lord without her husband, but she was also "celebrating" their first anniversary.  They were married last year on June 26.  So the bittersweetness was doubled.

Because, naturally, it was going to be a difficult weekend, Cheryl and I, along with two other friends, Haley and Rachell, spent Friday night at a fancy hotel in downtown Mobile.  In all honesty, I really expected it to be a pretty depressing night, but it was the complete opposite.  We had so much fun, and I really think Cheryl thoroughly enjoyed herself.  It was so nice to see her laugh that hard and smile that big again.  

Cheryl and Haley.. This was not planned!

Haley and Rachell.. on her stripper pole.  This is about as wild as it gets for us.

Cheryl and me

Spice Girls!

Me and Rachell

Me and Haley
We had a really good time.  We ate at the same restaurant for supper and lunch the next day, all because Cheryl wanted to.  We danced down the halls of the hotel.  We got lost looking for the pool.  We walked the streets of downtown Mobile.  We just had a lot of fun.

The Monday following that weekend, we, along with 8 other people, left for a relaxing vacation in Destin, FL.  Relaxing is exactly what it was..

Anybody ever go on annual family vacations and HAVE to get an airbrush t-shirt each and every time? No? Just me? Okay.  Well.. I designed us an airbrush t-shirt while we were waiting for pizza one night..  

Of course we didn't actually get airbrush t-shirts.  Apparently, we are much too cool for that.  A girl can dream though, right? 

Maybe next year.

It rained a little while we were there. Before it started, I got some pictures of the storm forming.  This was my favorite.

I thought it was pretty awesome for two reasons: 1. I think it's completely rad (yes, I just said rad) that you can see the rain falling and coming to meet in the middle.  2. It reminds me of how amazingly artistic our Heavenly Father is.

The water was a little crazy while we were there.  It was loaded with algae.. especially the last two days.  It was plain nasty.  I'm talking.. the SAND was green.  It also had a bangin' current.  I know.  I got stuck in it!  Real talk.. My sister-in-law, Rachell, and I were just sitting in our beach chairs watching all the guys try to boogie board.  I got hot so I decided I was going to get in the water real quick like.  I went until the water was about to my elbows and started "bobbing" in the waves.  I turned and looked back and was MUCH farther out than I found comfortable.. and I could barely touch anymore.  I tried to walk closer to the shore but couldn't get any closer.  I tried to swim but wasn't going anywhere.  I mentally panicked for about 30 seconds before I remembered that you were supposed to swim perpendicular to the current if you ever get caught it in.  Cha-ching!  It worked, obviously, because I'm still alive.  Praise Jesus.

We went shopping and found some awesome sunglasses.

Me and Rachell
One of my favorite parts of the trip was when I had this for breakfast.

Party in my mouth.

It was a good trip.. We were just chillin' out max and relaxin' all cool and all the whole week.  We cooked a few nights, spend a lot of time at the pool due to the algae abundance, went crabbing, and turned Steven into a mermaid.

We came home Saturday, and Sunday, we had our 4th of July celebration at church.  I was pleasantly surprised to see my navy-man cousin, Collin, walk in the doors!  

I almost cried.

Collin joined the navy a few months ago.  He went to boot camp in Illinois and then to "A-School" in San Antonio, where he trained to be a Master of Arms.  Master at Arms.  Of.  At. I'm not sure.  He is trained to work in the security detail.  After A-School, he, to my family's delight, got sent to Gulfport, MS.. which is an hour away from home!  My parents and Josh and I went to pick him up from the airport and surprised him two weeks ago!

There was some definite tearing up on my part as I had not seen him in months!  I missed my Colly!  

He, along with his high school buddy, Gabe (who joined the Navy a few months before Collin) were recognized at church.  They were both in their dress whites and were looking very sharp. 

Collin and Gabe

I never would have thought growing up that my little Collin would EVER be in the military.  Not in a million years.  But here he is, and I couldn't be more proud of him!  He's all grown up, and I'm very grateful for men like him who will stand up and believe in our country.

Have a good evening!!

1 comment:

  1. Wow Ashley, you've been busy! I'm so glad yall were able to take Cheryl out for a fun weekend in Mobile. Such sweet friends she has :) I'm also glad yall had such fun at the beach, and that you were able to fight the riptide. That's so scary! Oh, and I'm happy you were able to see your cousin at church. He's a cutie in those dress whites :) Happy weekend, friend!


    PS---LOVE the picture of the storm coming together over the ocean. Our God is indeed quite an artist!