First let me start off by saying this… I had THE time of my life with my family, new friends, new places and just flat out taking a true journey with my son. Something that I hope that he NEVER Forgets. I know that I won’t.
I will walk you through the progression at each stop and who everyone is. I have never taken this kind of trip let alone this much time off from work.. EVER!! I do mean ever. I have had the equivalent of a full time job since the age of 9. Out of necessity and goals I put on myself.
As I sit here and finally type this, almost 30 days out, my son is watching a Lego movie and holding the lego set we just put together. Laying in his robe, feet up, and not letting go of his hard work anytime time soon. I am pretty sure he would sleep with it if he could. 🙂 But I am truly reminiscing over the time we shared, the time we cried together, the stories, the moments… that will always be a part of us.
None the less, you’ve read this far, continue down this page and venture down the journey with us..We both took pictures along the way, and let me say, this kid is a natural..
#summer16 (Yes… that is a Drake reference)
Independence, MO – 7/02/16
My sister Stephanie lives here with her family. She has lived in the KC area for almost 20 years. We have lived together. Didn’t talk at times. Cried. Loved and Fought. You know…like normal siblings. 🙂 I wanted everyone to see the amazing young man that Jaiden has become and will continue to grow into. Plus, it has been way too long since I have seen her. Her health has had it’s ups and downs and I wanted to make sure I made time. I think people forget about that. Making time for those that matter. Making time for those who want for nothing. Making time to create memories and truly connect with loved ones. There was a time I was inseparable from my sister… I missed her. Her laugh… he hard working personality, and her new ‘Big Momma’ ways. Bless her heart, she still smokes, and doesn’t even smoke the cigarette really, just have it lit and slowly burn away… That’s Steph. Always making food.. Loving her children… and everyone else’s… there was always room for one more… and always enough food to go around. She always found a way… I get my business and drive from her… Just like anyone else in my life… I wouldn’t be who, what and where I am if I didn’t embrace my roots and learn from all the experiences.
Seeing my son play with his cousins for the first time was amazing. Seeing them connect, play legos, and other games, sleep in bunk beds, it was good for him. Hell is was good for me. There is so much commotion going on in her house, but everyone has a role and everyone contributes. It can seem chaotic, but honestly..it works..and those kids have a better life because of it. It made my heart melt to see the young ones so grown, KeShay, Stephan, Rose, Moni, Jake and Rachel… the new additions and growing family was awesome. Everyone needs a CRAZY Uncle Mike… I am yours.
I love you Sis.. never forget that.. and my home is always open to you as well… See you soon. Again, thanks for opening your home and allowing us to stay..
These are pics from our stay there.
Muskogee, OK – 7/3/16
So, after leaving my sisters house, tons of iPad games, old cars and random things that distracted us. It was time for a stretch, some lunch and gas. So, while I was on my way to see my other sister, Jenn in Texas, we stopped in Oklahoma. I was originally looking for a state park we could setup a picnic, drinks from capri suns and lunchables. Yes I still love those and had a car full of them. So, as I look left and right, I see this big Ol’ sign that says Castle ahead… I blinked and it still said it. It was on the Highway, and people were turning there in droves, so I thought, hell with it, worst case, we turn around. Jaiden was already enamored with the ‘Red Dirt’ of Oklahoma so lets give something random, fun and frivolous a chance. Boy, was it worth it.
First, peacocks… in the middle of OK? Gorgeous. Like the ones we see here in our Zoo. I soon then found out what this place was and why people were flocking to it. It was a compound that stays up all year for a HUGE Renaissance Festival. I mean the largest I have ever seen. During this off season, it was a huge fireworks stand in the castle, but the remaining area was a ghost town and we had it to ourselves besides a few other stranglers. Spiders, dirt, old signs and jails. It was something that I would envision would be out of McBeth or Camelot. Clearly, it had it’s ‘fictitious’ flare, but I drank from this well because I am here with my son and we are taking photos, walking around playing with everything and enjoying just that… A Father and Son… Bonding, laughing…most importantly creating memories of each other.
You’ll see what I mean..
Rockwall, TX – 7/3/16
Finally… I am in the Dallas area and I am so glad they live on the north side. LOL. I needed to get out of the car. Being 6’2″, I was beginning to get cramped with my new little Hybrid. I had drove a HUGE Nissan Titan for so long.. I needed some ‘rear’ training. None the less, I am almost there. We were staying with my sister Jenn, Jim her husband, Joslyn my niece and Ayessa and Amaveah, my great nieces. Ayessa has always had me around her finger. I love that little girl to pieces. We grilled. We drank. We played Cards Against Humanity, we had meat snacks, beers and then more laughs. I missed these two. Always fun. Being so far away was hard on me. Jenn is where I get my sass. She is the smartest, most stubborn, and at times ditsy and also loosey goosey. I learned how to stand up for myself and my beliefs from her. Like any other siblings, we fought, cried, got way to drunk together, but she will always be my goofy sister who taught me Guns N Roses and how to properly drink and go out and have fun. But there is one thing we should never do…talk politics LOL. Had to sis. Grilling, swimming, playing with the Dog, Ollie, and the cat Simba, (funny side story about that darn cat), hanging with Jim and meeting my nieces boyfriend was great. Just what Jaiden and I needed after another long journey. They opened their home, no question and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Jaiden got to meet his family and spend time with them. His mother is something that learns to test me in new ways but there was no one way she was going to ruin this opportunity on our journey. For Jaiden to truly create his own memories and meet people who have always been there for him and his father…yes.. there was lego time to be had..
Once you look at these, you’ll get it.
more to come…