Summer Road Trip 2009: Part 2: Visiting Friends and Family

I love the Internet (and sites like this blog and Facebook) because it enables me to keep in close contact to friends and family that are spread out over the country and world. But there is nothing quite like seeing loved ones in person, so we cherished the time we spent with them this trip, even if for the shortest of times!

Sorry for the shininess, Jenn!

Sorry for the shininess, Jenn!

Self portrait with Nose and Cheek

Self portrait with Nose and Cheek

Despite the craziness of wedding preparations Jenn and I were able to squeeze in some time together. On Friday night she and I and Esme grabbed some dinner at the American Dreams Diner, or “the Shiny Diner” as it is known among the Bresnans. Amidst mirrors and loud decor we chatted and enjoyed some yummy breakfast burrito-type meals.


We also met up the next day with Jenn’s mom and other bridesmaids at the Westwood Diner. Yes, two diners in two days. The five of us had a great time gabbing and relaxing before heading off to get ready for the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.

When we bid farewell to New York and New Jersey after the wedding we headed south to the City of Brotherly Love. While in Philadelphia we met up with Gordon pal, Amanda Thomson and her boyfriend Rich. The six of us had dinner at Pietro’s Pizza. The coal fired pizza was delicious and the conversation pleasant. Catherine even took a turn at serving some slices. Regrettably (and you’ll find this hard to believe) we have no photos from the evening. We’ll be sure to take some the next time we meet up!

Rebecca, Esme and Sarah

Rebecca, Esme and Sarah

Catherine and Grandpa

Catherine and Grandpa

Once we hit Ohio the socializing ramped up. We spent a lovely lunchtime in Mansfield with several members of the Carter Clan on Thursday. A visit to the Richland Carousel was enjoyed by all; boys and girls, young and old(er), pregnant and non…

While we loved seeing so many Carters; Dave, Katie, Becky, Luke, Caleb, Sarah and Steve, we missed having Auntie Kirsten and Uncle Mark along for the fun.




On Friday morning we headed to Columbus for a visit with the (recently expanded) Neuharth family. We were thrilled to finally meet baby Elena and, as Heather wrote recently, “When Baby Esme Caroline and Baby Elena Elizabeth were introduced by their mothers on Friday, the two babies smiled at each other. They observed carefully, as though they’d met before somewhere and were glad to meet again. “

Preparing Lunch

Preparing Lunch

Heather and I and the babies visited the Friday morning Moms group at nearby Sprout Soup while the Dads and Catherine hung out at the playground. After lunch we headed home, sad to leave good friends behind.

All dressed up for W&Ms wedding

All dressed up for W&M's wedding

Catherine and Esme had a great time with Grandma and Grandpa Wood. They splashed in the backyard wading pool, swung on the swing set and had hours of fun playing playdough, Mr. Potato Head and Memory on the breezeway. We all enjoyed good meals together and Peter and I even got some time out- we had a nice date to Ruby Tuesday’s and saw Harry Potter.

Blowing Bubbles!

Blowing Bubbles!

Heading towards home on Sunday we stopped in Mentor, OH to meet up with Melanie. Normally we swing through and visit her at work (and let Catherine run around the Children’s Library) but since she doesn’t work on Sunday we made other plans. The five of us enjoyed a lovely picnic lunch on the grounds of the Eleanor Garfield park right there in Mentor. It was so nice to be joined in our picnic and to have someone new to blow bubbles with! It was also nice to have a traveling picnic somewhere other than at a rest stop on the highway!

I truly wish that we didn’t have to leave anyone behind as we traveled back home. We are so blessed to have such wonderful friends and family; wherever they may reside! Thank you all so much for your hospitality, great conversation, games, laughs and love. Please darken our doorstep the next time you find yourselves in Massachusetts.

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