Sunday, May 20, 2012

Nashville

We loved every minute that my sister Emily was here! 
(Thank you Ryan!  Best Christmas present EVER and it wasn't even mine. :)

I asked Emily what she wanted to do when she came and she said, "Just chill."  So we did that a lot and kept the week pretty low key.  Which worked out well, since both of my boys got pretty sick the day after she got here.  Kamden had a double ear infection and slept for about two hours the night she came.

We kind of laugh about it, but when Zenock gets sick he becomes a seriously sweet/calm/obedient child.  The day he got really sick we had gone shopping and I told Emily I knew something was wrong with him, because he only asked for one thing and threw ONE tantrum the entire day!  I love my Zenock and he is a good sweet boy, but he is no where near calm and peaceful... although, I think he has gotten lots better in the last year.

We did lots of shopping while Emily was here... it's kind of our thing. :)  We also had lots of good sister time, talks, good cries, and ate plenty of cookie dough and ice cream.  She is so much fun and we think so much alike.  I am excited to see what her future holds.  

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A couple of weeks before Emily came I was checking my e-mail and had gotten my monthly newsletter from the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.  I had already checked to see who was playing when she was here... they didn't have anyone listed who I even knew, so we were still planning on a day in Nashville, but were going to skip the Opry.  It just so happened that they announced Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley to perform for the exact day we were going to be in Nashville.  The decision to go was a no brainer.

Oh my goodness... Carrie is kind of another one of our sister things.  We (and my Mom) watched every episode the season she won and bawled like babies when she did win.  We kind of think of her as a sister, if only she knew about it...  AND, well, Brad Paisley has always been my favorite.  I kind of love his wife too.  It was all too good to be true... I called up the Opry and got tickets as soon as they opened for the day.

Did I mention we are an hour and a half from Nashville.

Kind of crazy to think this was our first trip... The Washington DC us would have been there at least 10 times already.  Owning your own home and actually having responsibilities to do on the weekend kind of puts a stop to your fun sight seeing adventures. 

It also hasn't been too long since they reopened everything from the 2010 Spring floods, which put the Opry under TEN feet of water.  The mall just reopened in March.

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We had heard lots of good things about the Rainforest Cafe at the Opry Mills mall, so we decided to not rush the morning and get to Nashville in time for lunch.  We knew the day would be long.  Our concert didn't start until seven (when my kids normally go to bed).

The Rainforest Cafe was seriously awesome!  We had to wait an hour and a half for a table, which was ok since the cafe was in the mall and we could just walk around and wait for them to text us when our table was ready.  The cafe has all sorts of big/huge moving animals, trees, aquariums and the ceiling is covered with jungle looking stuff (like the picture below).  Every fifteen minutes the animals start to move and make noise and every 30 minutes (all while you eat) there is a rain/thunder storm and the lights go on and off, etc.  My boys loved it!


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We loved the $14.00 dessert JC decided to buy us... It was huge, fed all of us, and was worth every penny.  It is called the Volcano. :)  I wanted to take more pictures, but it was a little awkward taking pictures of the scenery with strangers eating at their table right next to it.

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After we stuffed ourselves with lunch, we walked over the the Gaylord Opryland Hotel.  (Everything was right next to each other within walking distance.)  In the center of the hotel is an enormous atrium and gardens to walk through.  There are three levels of walkways, a riverboat tour, and tons of little shops and restaurants to browse through... all in the hotel.  When we walked in Zenock told us it was the best surprise/present ever... It must have been, because I have never seen him smile so much for pictures.  It was gorgeous and pretty awesome.

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Next was our concert at the Grand Ole Opry. :)

I'm sure some are thinking, "They took their kids to a concert?"  BUT, I assure you it was very kid friendly.  It was a fairly small venue and everyone stayed seated.  There were a lot of older/grandparent couples who were there and told us afterwards how well behaved our children were.  I laughed... "My kids?!"  They were still recovering from being sick. :)

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Kamden was hilarious when the concert started, he was SO excited.  He stood up on our laps and clapped and yelled, "Yeah!" for most of the evening.

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We were nine rows back from the stage... awesome seats. :)  Scotty Mcreery (American Idol winner) sang a couple of songs.  I honestly can't stand the kid, but I admit he has a good voice.

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Enjoying the show... At about eight my boys started their nightly routine of hugging, laughing, and wrestling with each other.  They were so funny.

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Emily and I were so excited to see Carrie and even Zenock cheered with us when she came out.  I opted against posting the picture Emily took of me possibly crying... I admit it... It is so sad.  I totally blame it on the pregnant hormones.  I cry over everything these days.  You also know you have good seats when you can see the performers legs and think... Good heck, I need to start jogging - as soon as I have this baby.  Carrie is so little, has awesome legs, (I say that in an I need to get in shape, I have a husband and am married kind of way), she is also really darn pretty.

Zenock is a fan forever. :)  He gets excited now when she comes on the radio or when they mention her name.

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Mr Brad Paisley. :)  At the end Carrie came out and did a duet with Brad.  I would post video, but pretty sure I read something about that being illegal and I kind of need to stay out of jail and set an example for my three sons.  

Some of the other performers were Kristen Kelly and Love and Theft.  (Check out Kristen's song "Ex Old Man" and Love and Theft's song "Angel Eyes"... They are on my ipod playlist favorites.  They were JC's favorite of the night.)  Both of which are new up and coming country artists with songs on the billboard charts.  We really liked them.  It was such a fun concert.  

We loved everything about Nashville!  So fun to share it with Emily. :)

6 comments:

Shennie said...

Fun new updates. It was fun to see all pictures of places we went too.

Glad you had fun with your sister.

Glad you posted a picture of Jessica. I miss hearing about all of you guys!

Congrats on the next baby. I completely understand about the looks because of pregnancy... I'm happy to be having another kid but I really wish everyone else would be as happy for me :)

Traylor Family said...

You are the cutest pregnant lady EVER! Also, we're seriously 10 minutes from the Opry, if you ever want a date night with the hubs, play date at our place :) My boys would LOVE to play with Z and K.

Heidi said...

Shawn & I stayed at the Gaylord in DC. It was pretty awesome. :)

Jake and Melissa Kinghorn said...

I am so jealous of your adventures that you guys had without me. One of these days we need to do a girls retreat with everyone.:) Carrie really is like a sister. I think we may have made a huge contribution to her winning on american idol. Do you remember how mom would tell emily to start dialing after every episode!;) Haha I love our Mom! Oh and Carin your legs are freakin awesome! The pictures you have with Emily I kept thinking dang she looks so skinny and her legs look freakin amazing! I really do have two gorgeous sisters!:) So randomness maybe when you peak at your pregnancy weight and I drop a few all 3 of us girls will be the same weight for like the first time ever! Mom is probably right there with us as well. Let's make this a goal!:) Lets set the goal weight for like 130! Yes that is random and a little ridiculous but I kinda think it is funny and I am so close to calling you right now and planning it out. This comment is way too long but I love you and your cute little family!:)

Annie said...

wow! looks amazing! and i am loving your yellow capris! (and that teeny tiny little baby bump)

Jacque Hadlock said...

Carin! Congratulations on 3 boys! I LOVE boys! (of course;) I didn't even realize you were pregnant again! And Josie keeps reminding me that she still wants 2 sisters... I just tell her maybe but for now I am just enjoying what I have and we will leave that up to Heavenly Father... meaning He has to send a girl and mom some more sanity as well! You look just beautiful and I am so glad Emily was able to come out and visit you! Sister are the best!