Hurricanes, Birthdays, and Insurance, Oh My!
Warning: this is a long post with a lot of pictures.
We Davises are masters of jamming events together to make all things possible. We once leaped off a red-eye flight from a weeklong trip in Hawaii, drove straight to Missouri for Shawn’s big sis’ wedding reception, after which I booked it several hours in a car to meet with a client in another state. We have also been known to strategically plan one of us being able to drop the kids off at daycare and hop on a flight making sure the other lands in Cedar Rapids in time to pick them up—not the best idea, clearly. It’s craziness (hopefully with my new non-traveling gig we will no longer need to employ ninja scheduling tactics). So it’s right in our fashion to plan a little family birthday celebration for the little man (who would be turning one!) the same weekend as Mr. Davis and I would be at the Chairman’s Round Table for Monumental Life in Washington, DC.
We try not to take kids on work-related trips but this fell the same weekend as Rex’s first birthday. Pretty much either the little man had to come or I would be staying back. And, YES, I realize he will have no recollection of any of it—it’s the principle!
Mr. Davis had to be out there the day before which meant I flew with both kids on my own. Now, I’m a pretty low maintenance traveler, but this was a new kind of carry-on luggage for me. I’m happy to report they’re little pros and did amazingly well…thank you Steve Jobs for the iPad.
The convention was at the Gaylord National Harbor Hotel which sits right on the Potomac River. It has this gorgeous atrium with a small town set up and tons of activities…and great decor to drool over.
Our room was pretty sa-weeeeeet too.
No, really, it was one of the suites. With our two adjoining bedrooms, we were sitting pretty with our choice of three bathrooms plus a walk in closet and a full kitchen with a dishwasher. …the fact that they kept restocking all the wine made it even sa-weeter. You’re probably wondering why we had such a kick ass room and, well, it’s because it’s meant to entertain—no problem! Done! Speaking of, have you seen Cedar Rapids the movie?
The best part is that hubs’ incredibly fun, baby-whispering big sis, Shanna, agreed to come along and help out with the kids when we had to go to the receptions and meetings. She’s awesome like that. It also meant I had another adult around while Mr. Davis was running around in full on work mode. Pretty sure we need to bring her on all future trips! (BTW, I’m in love with new dress above from Shabby Apple).
Friday afternoon we hopped on a tour bus to the Smithsonian. With the kids in tow, we opted for the Air and Space Museum and the National Museum of Natural History. Clearly, an afternoon tour was not long enough to take it all in.
…and then we got more news about our friend Irene headed toward DC—as if an earthquake earlier in the week wasn’t enough. Okay, we lived in Florida, we get the hurricane thing and this one wouldn’t be too bad. But, the potential of no flights for days combined with losing electricity at the hotel prompted the flight rescheduling task force (Shan & Shawn).
Lame, Irene. Lame.
This meant Shan, the kids, and I would be flying out on Rex’s birthday, a day before we originally planned. I’d also be missing out on the awards ceremony and seeing hubs in a tux. Sadsville. He promised to take a pic of him all penguin-like but he forgot so if anyone has oneplease send it my way.
Cue early birthday celebration for the little buddy! We quickly found the closest cupcake store to the hotel, Cakelove, which was conveniently a couple blocks away. The cake of choice for the little man’s first ever? Red velvet.
He destroyed it. :)
Even in all of the event planning craziness, a couple of hubs’ coworkers, Linda and Amy, brought a cupcake for the little guy when they found we were leaving early. These ladies are beyond amazing considering they were trying to take care of the 900 people at the event.
The next morning, Rex’s actual birthday, we packed it up, said goodbye to Mr. Davis, and trucked it to the Reagan International Airport. Rex was beyond entertained, throwing and chasing a bottle cap for the hour we were waiting (if you want Christmas gift ideas, I’m going to suggest a lint roller).
The airport closed shortly after we took off. Shan was able to be on the first leg of the trip too which was an added bonus. Once we got to Cedar Rapids, Lindsay insisted on being in charge of the suitcase. She’s a little pro traveler already.
While hubs rode out the hurricane without power, we came to the comforts of home. Well, minus any working toilets. I completely forgot about the siding and tile projects that were happening while we were gone. We threw the guys for a loop showing up early while they were working. They were great to get one of the bathrooms up and running that day for us. Phew!
Happy crazy first birthday Rex! I wonder what’s in store for year two.
Updated: I got a pic of the hubs in a tux. Isn’t he so handsome? Penguins everywhere are jealous.