It was high times for the Stiles clan this month as we all boarded a snug Southwest flight and made the journey back east for a long overdue visit. We spent two weeks covering New England, from Southern Connecticut to Northern New Hampshire and several places in between.
Early morning flight out of good ole' Gate 24. For those of you who know OAK terminal 2, you'll know that means we lucked out and avoided the long walk down to the gates numbered 26+ and were located nice and close to the coffe place and breakfast burrito place. Off to a good start!
First stop: Mystic Aquarium. M&M mug for a nice shot outside while Mom, Dad, and Grandpa get things together for the big day.
M&M make the very first trip to Chuck E Cheese's to see Nana and Tom (a/k/a Grumpy).
Next stop, a visit with Aunt Jan and Uncle Bruce at the fair. Maddy demanded to go on the Pirate Ship (one of these), and I agreed figuring the ride operator would never let on a 4-year-old. Well, you gotta love carneys - safety concious they ain't. The nice, mostly toothless fellow was more than happy to let Maddy sprint by and grab a seat. He even gave a little tug on her lap bar to ensure she would be nice and safe. On the plus side, she loved it and we both kept our hands high in the air for the entire ride. Thatta girl!
From Connecticut, we made our way north to Jackson, NH. We made a much needed stop in Putney, VT to grab some lunch. Man we miss Vermont style hippies. Altogether different than the Berkeley variety - much mellower and more into cheese.
We hooked up with our old friends Jeff and Laura and their daughter Ella for a great five day stay in the White Mountains. Maddy was very impressed with Ella, who taught her all about dressing up as a scary ghost.
Apparently, if you don't take your kids to Story Land while in Jackson, you could be subject to a visit from social services -- so Jeff tells me. So we figured we ought to check it out. Milo, Ella, and Maddy above - not the least bit intimidated by clowns. By the way, you may notice that Milo is wearing an eye patch in several photos. He has to wear it for a couple hours a day for the next few months to correct a vision issue (his left eye likes to drift off, not unlike his old man). It's nothing permanent and he likes the patch - thankfully.
Maddy takes Mom, Laura and Ella for a drive.
Milo, Maddy, and Ella enjoy one of many healthy, well-balanced dinners (note the carrots).
We also visited The AMC Highland Center and Crawford Notch - home of one of the collest playgrounds around. Above, Maddy happily juants across the bridge while Milo considers his options.
From Jackson, we headed south to visit Aunt Heather, Uncle John, and cousins Jacob and Joshua. Above, Milo and Joshua going big on the trampoline.
Aunt Pam, Maddy, and Unlce John (above) also came by Aunt Heather's for a little family reunion.
Above: Maddy and Milo give Leni and Zoe a big hug good-bye and prepare for a quick visit with Uncle Nathan enroute back to Grandpa's house in Connecticut.