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Jul 3, 2012

Prelude to a Family Vacation

Spending time relaxing and catching up with your closest kin in a setting unfamiliar to each of you is pretty high on my list of best things ever. Good thing too...because vacations are like crack in our family. Can't get enough of them. Especially in the summertime. We've been taking a big family vacation each summer for as long as I can remember. My mom, dad, sister, and D (he made the family vacay list around age 15) were my immediate vacationing partners, but those aren't the only usual suspects. My MeeMaw (grandma for all you non-Southerners), Papaw, aunt (my mom's sister), uncle, and two of my favorite cousins (and now my new cousin-in-law) were always in tow. Quite a big group of knuckleheads, dontcha' think? 

We've mostly vacationed in places like Disney World, Kansas (where my cousins live), and various beaches on the East coast. Nothing too big or fancy...just simple, fun, family time together away from the craziness of our everyday lives. Well, that is until this year.

As soon as D and I found out that we were moving to Germany, our little yearly family vacation to the coast of North Carolina turned into...

Can I just tell you how both crazy excited and terrified out of my mind I was for this endeavor? From December 2011 to May 2012, my life consisted of planning and organizing a family vacation of epic proportions. I won't say it solely consisted of playing travel agent (I did have help, thanks Linds!), but it was on my mind 24/7...literally eating away at my brain. Truth be told, after all the logistics were set in stone and 8 of my most favorite people in the world were excitedly packing their suitcases, I might have gone a little nutso. Tears, sleepless nights, and lots of wine happened that week. Murphy and his stupid law also made an appearance or two, making for a few heinous ugly cry sessions. Believe me, planning a trip of this magnitude for this many people of varying ages was no easy undertaking. There were alot of moving parts...mostly because we were going to be vacationing in Europe, and traveling around Europe is very complicated to navigate. More so than the states, as you can imagine. Figuring out to how transport 10 Americans and all their luggage across a few countries was like decoding an intricate web of foreign languages and timetables. My mind wants to explode just thinking about it. I also had a lot of people to answer to if things went awry (although they'd tell you I would have never been the scapegoat...they're sweet like that). This could be the only time in their lives that my family might be in Europe, so I wanted everything to be PERFECT. Talk about being under pressure. Not to mention, this is the first time in my adult life that our vacationing rolls had been reversed. Usually the mommies plan the whole shebang. Right down to the grocery shopping and laundry washing. That's what mommies do, right? This trip, well it was the "kids" turn to take up the reins, a thought that easily terrified the crap outta me, but somehow, by the grace of God, we survived. 
And we had a pretty fabulous time.

So, this is our story.
10 people, 3 countries, 14 days. 
Let the vacation recaps begin!


  1. That sounds amazing! My mom and grandma came to visit me and they were just staying at my house which I stressed about for months so I cannot even imagine what you were going through!

  2. I love Emerald Isle - thats where my husband's family always goes! And how cute are your little captions! How did you make them?

  3. I can't wait to read all about it! I'm close with my family too, and I can only imagine the epic-ness that was your big, fat, European family vacation!

  4. Yay! I can't wait to read about your fabulous vacation! :)

  5. Your photos have given me serious beach fever even more than I already had!
    I can't wait to read all about your amazing big, fat, European family vacation!!

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