Family Matters

Staycations seem to be all the rage these days. For those who don’t know, a “Staycation” is {according to the always dependable Wikipedia} a relatively newish term for the period of time in which an individual or family stays and relaxes at home, possibly taking day trips to regional attractions. Viewed as a good alternative to the stereotypical blow-your-budget summer getaway, Staycations have become increasingly popular with those looking to save big money while still escaping the daily grind (a.k.a. everyone).

For the past week and a half, Missy and I have been gearing up for what is promising to be a busy end of the summer for the Hardinge and Florer clans. As parents of 15-month-olds, we’ve realized {as I’m sure have other parents waging daily battles against teething, minimal attention spans, and the general lack of wanting to ride in car seats for longer than 10 minutes} that taking any sort of vay-cation this year has become virtually impossible. Yet with various family members arriving to visit throughout the month, August has quickly evolved almost into a pseudo Staycation; a welcomed change and much needed break from the norm for everyone.

The fun started in earnest this past Saturday when an east coast delegation consisting of my Dad, my sister Hannah, and her boyfriend-newly-turned-fiancé Chris rolled into town caravan-style with Fred ‘n Erma (Dad’s trusty Chevy Extended Cab & Airstream trailer). Although we wished that the whole family (cousins, aunts, uncles, and all) would have unloaded from that silver bullet, seeing even a few familiar faces from my neck of the woods sure was a awesomely heart-warming sight, especially since it had almost been an entire year since our last visit.

Dad's Digs.

The Iowa flag is a new addition for the trip!

We immediately reconnected over lunch, and spent the majority of the afternoon letting the girls “warm up” and get reacquainted with the new faces.

Jovie made a new friend fast!

It feels like a whole six months of stories, outings, games, food, and entertainment have been crammed into the past 48 hours since their arrival…

Sistahs! Posing at Jasper County Winery

The Tasting Crew

Dasher Licking

…but the fun is only just beginning. Missy has really gone above and beyond the call of duty in creating the itinerary for the week while the three travelers are in town. Still to come: dinner and drinks at the High Life Lounge, a visit to the National Balloon Classic coming up on Wednesday, Go-Karts, tubing the Raccoon River, farmers markets, local brewery hopping (no pun intended), shopping, and much more!

The Skedge...

But wait…that’s not all! Almost immediately after the Hardinge clan pulls up their stakes (trying not to think about that part yet :-|), Melissa, Jake, and Tennyson fly in for their two-week visit! It promises to be a lively time; Tennyson is so anxious to play with her baby cousins now that they aren’t fragile little infants. Plus, the state fair starts soon after their arrival…can’t go wrong with that! I’ll be dropping the occasional update to share more pictures and anecdotes as they come, so stay tuned!

Whew! I get exhausted just thinking about it all. Missy and I will need a vacation from our Staycation (hey-o!) once all is said and done… 😉

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Sorry for the cheesy title…just be thankful that I couldn’t fit “Dinosaurs” into it any way I tried.

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About Tom Hardinge

Loving husband to my wife Missy, loving father to my four daughters Sienna, Rowan, Jovie, and Lola. I'm a chronic over-packer who loves good coffee, good music, running, waffle tee's, fleece pants, and Jesus Christ!

2 thoughts on “Family Matters

  1. Pingback: Staycation Rewind | Balloons, Photoshoots, and More! | living in pursuit

  2. Pingback: Construction Update #10 | Week 12 | living in pursuit

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