Monday, July 27, 2009

Mottastic Weekend ~ July 23-26, 2009

This past weekend was a lot of fun. Not only did my brother Todd & his expecting wife Erin drive in from New York for a visit, but two of my four cousins drove from Minnesota to see the rest of the Mott's. Therefore, we found it only appropriate to have a mini-Mott family reunion along with a Mottastic Baby Shower for Todd & Erin.

On Saturday, we had a mini-Mott family reunion at my Dad & Berneda’s house. It’s the first time in three years that all of my brothers and sister and I have been together (since my wedding) and the first time in ?? years that we’ve seen any of my cousins. It was a really nice day with great conversation and lots of Cornhole (as usual!)

My brothers, sister & me ~ Travis, Tracy, Todd, Shannon & Sean...Kristin wanted to be in the picture too :)

Seven of the nine Mott cousins (from oldest to youngest) ~ Newell, Wendy, Travis, Tracy, Todd, Sean & Shannon (Where's Kristin?)

Todd & my Dad during a friendly game of Cornhole

Dad & Sean playing Cornhole

My niece, Kristin guess is that either Sean & Steve were chasing her at this point.

Todd & Erin

My sister Tracy, our sister-in-law Erin & Shannon

The following day I hosted a small baby shower for Erin & Todd. It was a nice and relaxing day where a bunch of the Mott women were able to get together and talk. Personally, it was the best baby shower I’ve ever been to :) We had great food, cocktails, Rock Band, American Idol Karaoke and Cornhole!

Shannon, Alex, Wendy, Berneda, Tracy, Coletta & Erin (Leslie was there too, but left before the picture was taken...)

Erin opening her gifts

Tracy & Wendy

Tracy, Wendy & Shannon

Todd & Mom

During the girly part of the shower the guys all headed down to Whiskey Island to waste some time then joined back with the girls to play Rock Band and several games of Cornhole. It was an all-day event that took us late into the evening and left us all exhausted as we headed into work on Monday.

Rock Band ~ Wendy on bass guitar, Joshua on drums, Jacob on guitar, Tracy on vocals.

Todd on drums, Daniel on bass guitar, Steve on vocals, Joshua on guitar

Jacob & Sean playing Cornhole

It's the girls' turn! Alex & Erin playing Cornhole

Wendy & Shannon

Family is such an important part of life and this weekend gave me the opportunity to spend a lot of time with the people that I love most. It was great fun and regardless of how many years pass until we see each other again, we created memories this weekend that will last a lifetime.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Treasure Island, FL ~ July 13-20, 2009

Very rarely do Steve and I vacation alone in the summer. We really enjoy sharing the vacation experience with the people we love and as a result, so many of our memories revolve around our vacations with friends and family!! We always have so much fun. Anyway, this year we did it...After a week of family fun in Myrtle Beach, we spent a week in Treasure Island, Florida for a much-needed and very relaxing vacation…just the two of us! Our month-long home renovations did some real damage to my nerves and this vacation (which I usually spend with Jenny!!!) was PERFECT in every sense of the word. Steve knows that I’m a sun addict and knew exactly what was in store, so when he found the beach umbrella in the condo closet, he too was on cloud nine :) Time passed by quickly, but it was great. We sat on the beach, we sat in hammocks, we ate, we drank, we laughed, we talked, we watched dolphins, we watched sunsets, and we had a lot of fun doing absolutely NOTHING. I guess you can say that this was a trip to celebrate our three-year wedding anniversary…July 21st marks that day and we couldn’t be happier.

This is a view from the balcony of the condo. I found a really great deal online and we were very happy with everything. We were located at one of the widest parts of the beach in Treasure Island, which made it a longer walk to the water, but a much more secluded beach. It was fantastic!

Steve & I at Middle Grounds Grill. We made this place our staple during our stay. Not only did they have great food & drinks (especially the raspberry mojito!), but their happy hour and drink specials made for a very affordable night out.

We walked to John's Pass located in Madeira Beach, FL. It's a little village with touristy shops, restaurants & a boardwalk. It was a long and HOT walk, but also an adventure :)

We stopped in a few bars to get out of the heat and grab a drink. Here I am at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. with a fancy drink in a fancy flashing glass (that I got to keep!)

Here's Steve at Middle Grounds Grill again. It was half-priced Van Gogh vodka on this particular night so we opted to have a couple :) Although he looks a little fruity with this coconut martini, it was so good that he got another!

On our last day I wanted to soak up as much sun as possible so before our flight we made sure to get lunch on the rooftop patio at Crabby Bill's.

Steve & I at the southern-most part of Pass-a-Grill Beach where the Gulf of Mexico & Intercoastal Waterway meet. It was very nice and quiet :)

The sunset from our balcony.

Steve & I at Player's on Madison for our 3-Year Anniversary Dinner. As always, we had a great time with great food & great drinks.

We had a really great trip and look forward to our next destination....whether it be with friends, family or just the two of us, we know that more memories will be created and a good time will be had by all!

Myrtle Beach, SC ~ July 3-12, 2009

My 30th birthday was one that I will never forget! Steve and I vacation in Myrtle Beach often, but this year we were able to celebrate my “Big 3-0” with our great family and friends…In the end, 11 of us (Shannon, Steve, Paul, Sue, Karen, Andrew, Sean, Alex, Elizabeth, Coletta & Rich) made the trip south. Paul & Sue worked their magic and coordinated with my mom & Rich for them to make the trip and surprise us! Even more special was that we also celebrated Alex’s birthday on this trip, so they were able to be there for her Mexican fiesta. It was quite shocking and I still can’t believe all of them were able to keep it a secret (especially Rich!), but it was a very special treat and a really nice time. Don’t worry…we didn’t all cram into one living space; the “adults” stayed in one condo, while the “kids” stayed in another :) We had a whole lot of fun!

On our drive down to Myrtle Beach, we stopped in Winnsboro, SC and stayed with Cal & Keleigh Caldwell. As always, they were very generous hosts and coordinated with Greg & Karen Airasian and Ryan Stack to meet up with us for some drinks.

Here are the boys...Steve, Ryan, Cal & Greg.

With the help of and our own research conducted on previous visits to MB :) we ventured to some great happy hour locations during our trip. Here we are on the patio at Greg Norman's Australian Grill. Great appetizers & cocktails!

Steve & Elizabeth

Elizabeth, Shannon & Alex

We celebrated Alex's 28th birthday at Malibu Cantina Tex Mex.

Feliz Cumpleanos Alejandra!

Just after we entered the restaurant, my mom & Rich walked in and surprised us! They had driven 12 hours so that they could celebrate with very special. We came to find out that they were actually hiding in the bushes when we arrived outside. I would have to loved to see that!

The night before my birthday we went to the Thirsty Turtle. Karaoke was the highlight of the evening!

Shannon & Steve

Rich & Coletta

Shannon, Alex & Elizabeth

The "Big Kids" table. Sue, Paul, Rich & Coletta.

The karaoke gang! Rich, Sean, Coletta, Steve, Elizabeth, Alex & Shannon

On my birthday, we ate a delicious dinner at one of my favorite restaurants in MB (California Dreaming). After dinner we enjoyed some birthday cupcakes. Yum!

Shannon & Steve

Andrew & Karen

Anyone who has traveled to Myrtle Beach with us knows that the trip isn't complete without a car bomb at Finn McCool's. It was only appropriate that we topped off my birthday celebration with one.

On our last night, we went to Greg Norman's again for happy hour. Here is the Horan/Schur crew...Andrew, Karen, Paul, Sue, Stephen & Shannon

Elizabeth, Shannon & Steve on our last night.

Steve & Shannon at the site of our wedding ceremony. Nearly three years later and still so happy :)

We have created so many great memories in Myrtle Beach and this trip only added to the list. Thanks to everyone for making this trip so fun and fantastic!!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Jenny & Bob's Wedding ~ June 27, 2009

On June 27th, 2009, my friend Jenny married Bob Donlon at the Black Horse Inn in Warrenton, VA. Everything about the weekend was beautiful, fabulous and fun!

Here is Jenny with one of the horses prior to the wedding…It was very picturesque!

The beautiful bride!

Jenny & Bob’s first dance

Steve & Shannon. Aren’t we just so adorable?!

Shannon & Jenny with Irish car bombs after the wedding. As much as I tried to peer pressure Jenny, she wouldn’t budge and I had to settle with a picture of her with Steve’s car bomb…the wedding night just wouldn’t be complete without one :)