James got a hold of my phone and took a selfie!
I boiled some quail eggs just to see how I liked them. They taste exactly the same as regular eggs, but you can eat them in one bite!
We had a thunderstorm come through our neighborhood with unusually high winds (a few weeks before Hurricane Matthew) and it took down a few trees. Our neighbors across the street had a tree that just snapped.
Rett walked up to it and started trying to pick it up. He was grunting and pushing and then he said, "Too heavy!" I love that he thought he could do it.
I was so surprised that Rett fell asleep on the couch early one morning after taking James to school, so I took a picture of it. Then about 30 minutes later he woke up crying with a 102 degree fever and vomited everywhere. Poor baby! He was miserable for about 24 hours, but then he was fine. No one else got sick thank goodness!
During the thunderstorm, a small snake came up to our front porch and hid behind our screen door. Anthony caught it for James and put it in a spare aquarium (Of course!) I am planning to use him at our 11 year old scout day camp for animal identification and then let him go.
Some red okra from our garden. So big!
When Hurricane Matthew was projected to hit our area, we started to get a little nervous. Since we live so close to the beach, our neighborhood is in an evacuation zone (something you don't think about when you love living close to the water!). I wasn't too concerned about damage to our home, but I was worried about how crazy every one else in town was acting and what traffic would be like if they ordered mandatory evacuations. The hurricane was projected to hit late Thursday night and during the day Friday. James still had school Wednesday, so we decided to go to my brother's in Gainesville Wednesday night. School was canceled Thursday and Friday and Anthony's work closed for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
All during the day Wednesday I prepped the house, packed our bags, and cleaned everything. I don't know why, but somehow it just felt better leaving everything clean :) Our landlords had hurricane shutters in the garage that already had screws placed in the exterior walls of the house, so I pulled them all out, figured out which windows they went on and put them up. We took the tortoise and the cat with us, Anthony brought all his coral to a friend's house who had a generator for his tanks, and we put a tarp over the quail and gave them extra food and water.
It barely rained in Gainesville while we were there, so we spent our two days there trying to wear the boys out. We went to the natural history museum and checked out all the exhibits. It is such a cool place! Rett really was happy, I don't know why he made that face.
They have exhibits with different ecosystems that you walk through and there are all kinds of animals around you in the display. They look so life like! This rattlesnake was hiding in the cave section. James saw it and said, "Look! A diamond rattlesnake!" Anthony couldn't have been prouder that he knew that.
Checking out the microscopes.
They have a kids play area with all kinds of educational toys, so we played there for a little while.
Hands down James' favorite part about visiting Daniel was walking his dog Henry every chance he could get. Henry is an old dog and a basset hound, which makes him pretty low key. I think he got more exercise in the two days we were there then he has had in a long time! Henry weighs more than James, so a lot of times he would be pulling James around.
Rett figured out how to climb out of his pack and play, so it was really hard to keep him in bed at night. We didn't want him to wake up James, so if he was too loud we would let him come out in the living room with us. Usually his excuse for coming out is, "I hungry Mommy!" so I gave him some crackers. He took them to the stairs and was stretched out happily watching us. This kid is so cute, it is hard to be firm with him!
Friday a lot of places were closed for the hurricane, but we still needed to get out of the house or the kids would bounce off the walls! So we started driving around and ended up showing James places we lived and worked in Gainesville. We drove past the house I grew up in from age 5 to 14. I couldn't get over how much smaller it looked. All my memories of it are from when I was little, so I think of it as being so big. It was for sale, so we got a flyer to look at the pictures of the inside. James said, "Can you believe this house is free because it is on sale? We should live in it!" I wish!
Then we drove past the house I lived in from age 14 to when I went off to college. The owners have done a lot of work to the house, including putting in a spa type pool and redoing the barn. It looked so different to me!
There was a curfew in place for our county during the hurricane and you could get in big trouble if the police caught you driving around before 8am Saturday morning. So we decided to leave Gainesville early in the morning and get back home right after the curfew lifted. There were trees down all over the neighborhood and the city was working on clearing branches off of the streets, but our house and yard looked almost exactly how we left it! We just had to clean up some pinecones and branches that blew into our yard and sweep. The power didn't come back on for another 2 days, so it was hot inside the house. Plus, no power means no tv or netflix. Torture for parents of small kids :) They helped me sweep the driveway and ran around a little bit.
The schools were closed for two more days after that since it took so long for clean up and for the power to come back on, so James has had 5 hurricane days off of school this year! They are going to have to make them up at some point. I just hope they don't cut Christmas vacation short.
Since Rett learned how to climb out of his crib, we took it down and moved him to a mattress on the floor. I'm pretty sure his room will never be clean ever again :) After a night of sleeping on the crib mattress, I ordered him a twin size. My big guy looked so cramped on that small mattress!