Tuesday, January 3, 2012

charming Charleston

The Friday before New Year's, Brian said, "Hey, let's go to Charleston for the weekend!"  And I said, "Hey, that's a really bad idea!  We don't have reservations, we don't know anything about the city, I would have to pack all the little's stuff, we'd have to fight our way into restaurants since it's a holiday, oh, and our car dvd players stopped working, so we'll have to listen to screaming the way there and back."  I said something like that.  I may have used some cursing, too.  I know that one of my New Year's resolutions was to be brave, but it wasn't technically New Year's yet.  So I thought that ringing in the New Year at home and in jammies sounded just fine.

But I somehow got talked into taking a last minute road trip down to Charleston.  I think there were drinks involved, but I don't actually remember agreeing.  But Saturday morning I found myself being shuffled out the door with two sleepy kids and my in-laws for a trip to the coast.  I was grumpy, and pretty certain that the trip would be a disaster, and I prepared myself with a little "I told you so" speech for when things started going downhill.  It was going to be a good one, but I never got to use it!  The littles were great, and good little troopers all the way.

Why does Rowan look so happy?  Well, she kept shouting out "Jingle Bells*!" to the one man band, and he finally agreed and gave into her.  I'm sure it helped that they dropped some bucks in his bucket first. (*she technically calls it "Jingle Away")
Why does Brian look so happy?  Well, you can see what's in his hand there.  On our first day, we just got our bearings in the city, ate some good food, and then found the hotel for a quick naptime.  Our hotel was a lovely historic building, just like every other building in the city.  There are rooftop porches all over the city, and our hotel had a great view of the water and the city.
We took champagne, sparkling cider, cheese, and children in jammies up to the rooftop well before midnight to celebrate. 
Then we went back to the room and had a dance party!  For about 5 seconds before the littles dropped from exhaustion.
We were all sound asleep when the New Year came.  Brian and I tried to stay up, but when you're in a quiet room with two sleeping kids, it's hard not to give in to the sleepies!  The littles woke us up bright and early the next day for some sight-seeing.
I set Rowan down to walk so I could snap a picture of this building.  She promptly tripped and fell on her face.  When she looked up, her entire mouth was covered in blood.  I went into panic mode, grabbed her, and started shouting gibberish commands to Brian.  It was something like: ohmygodshesbleedingtoomuchcall911sheneedsstiches-andohmygodwhyareyoujuststadingthere????  Brian calmly wiped out her mouth, decided it wasn't too bad, and gave her a sucker.  This is why he makes a good Army officer, and why I would NOT.  My adrenaline finally went back to normal, and my hands stopped shaking enough to take about a billion pictures.  So here you go!  Enjoy!
Although Charleston is indeed very charming, there are lots of reminders that it wasn't always so charming. 
 Doorbells.  The temptress of any 3 year old boy.
 Reese, we hardly knew ye.  Just kidding.  Reese Witherspoon is alive and well, last I checked.
After lunch we decided to take a horse drawn carriage tour of the city.  It was supposed to be about 45 minutes, so we thought it would be ok with the littles.  They both LOVE horses.
 How clean is Charleston?  Well, when one of the horses pees in the street, the tour guides throw these little flags down and call sanitation to come power wash the streets.  Whoa, that's clean.
It was about this time in the tour that the hour mark passed, and Rowan started a full on melt down.  I mean, she FREAKED out.  She was screaming, crying, and kicking other passengers.  She threw out her balloon, threw out her sucker, and threw out my favorite pair of sunglasses.  Goodbye, sunglasses.  We had a special kind of love that I'm not sure I can find again.  Until I go replace you, that is.  Anyway, Rowan tried to throw herself out of the carriage, but I was able to restrain her.  She still screamed, and my mother-in-law urged me to get off the ride.  In the middle of a city I didn't know.  With a screaming child.  Alone.  That's how bad this melt down was. 
I threatened to leave her here at the old prison, and she quieted right down.  After that, I decided enough was enough and announced it was time to go home! 
It was definitely time.

We'd like to go back before moving to Missouri, but we also have Savannah on our list, along with a handful of other places, so we have a lot to squeeze in before March! 

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