Sunday, October 19, 2014

Jacob William Pepper (aka Jack)

Sooo...we had another baby! Surprise! Okay, so most of you already know this by now. That's the beauty of Facebook. Here's the birth story, which really isn't crazy because it was so short!

On May 7, my mom was scheduled to come into the Raleigh-Durham airport. We met her there and I on the way home from the airport I started to feel contractions. We started timing them. We got home and my mom and I ran to the grocery store after Drew got home from work. We were still timing the contractions, which were super close & strong. I had to stop walking around at the store every time one came. We got home and Drew left for his youth activities at the church. He always did his activity from 7-8:30 and then played basketball afterwards until around 10 or 10:30. My mom and I were making freezer meals while he was gone and by 8:30 I called Drew and told him I couldn't handle it anymore--we HAD to go to the hospital.

We get to the hospital and there is no one else in the waiting room. We get checked in around 9. I hate all the tests they do, by the way. They decide my contractions are close enough to keep me. I get a fancy (HA!) room and I can tell you honestly that this was the most painful labor of my three children. I was in so much pain. Those contractions were no joke! I asked for an epidural as soon as they could give it to me. I got one but I could still feel some pain in my left leg, but I didn't care because most of the pain was dulled. They broke my water around 10 or 10:30, I think. The contractions started to really pick up after that. Jacob came in, like, 20 minutes! It was crazy! I was in the hospital for a total of 3 hours before I had him. That seems so fast to me. But it was the most painful 3 hours OF.MY.LIFE. Good thing he's beautiful.

The next morning my mama brought Luke and Gracie in to meet their new brother. They love him so much!

LOOK at how small he is!! I can't even handle it!!
Two months later we had Jacob's blessing at church. Our parents were all able to come, so it was really special. Also, Drew's grandparents, his younger brother Matt, and my brother Steven came out.

In the blessing, one of the things Drew said was that Jacob would be a joy to his family. It is already so true. He is so smiley and happy. (Not that you can tell from the pictures.) But he really is. And he makes us all so happy when we see him because he has a huge, beautiful smile. Welcome to the family, Jacob William!! We're so grateful you're part of our family!!

Sunday, March 2, 2014


Drew learned that he may be going to Hawaii for work last year, around September-ish, I think. I told him: if you're going, I'm going. And I stuck to my guns. I knew it would be crazy expensive but how many times am I going to have an opportunity to go to Hawaii with my man? 

Since we were already going to be in Texas for Christmas, we asked Drew's parents to watch the kiddos while we skirted off to Hawaii for 10 days. They graciously agreed. So here's our Hawaiian adventure:

Day 1: 8 hour flight to Hawaii. Drew upgrades our car rental to a red Mustang convertible, which takes me by completely surprise! We go to Wal-Mart for food for the hotel room and we eat at the "restaurant" that's inside Wal-Mart, called L&L Hawaiian BBQ.

8 hour flight!!

Mustang Sally

Fine Dining

Hotel beds pushed together

Day 2: We started our day with driving to the Dole Plantation. This is where the famous pineapples come from. We had the "famous" Dole Whip, which is really just pineapple ice cream. It was fine, I think people had talked it up too much and it was a bit disappointing. Anyway, we also did a maze at the Dole Plantation and took a little train ride around the grounds, which was a little boring. My advice to anyone going to the Dole Plantation: get the Dole Whip and wander around. Don't spend the money on all the other things. 

Then we stopped at a shaved ice place on the side of the road and that shaved ice was like butter. Seriously, it was shaved so fine that it was smooth and oh so delicious. We then drove on to see BYU-Hawaii and the Laie temple. Then we went to the Polynesian Cultural Center and stayed there for the rest of the day. That place was so neat but we were so exhausted by the end of the night that we ended up leaving early. But there is so much to learn there! It was really awesome.

Dole Whip

On the train ride

Pineapple plant (I had never seen one before!)

A gorgeous spot along the North Shore

Pina colada shaved ice...yummmm

Oh you know, just driving around Hawaii in a convertible. No big deal. 

Laie Temple (the grounds are GORGEOUS!)


Day 3: We went to the Pearl Harbor Memorial and we also hiked Diamond Head.

USS Arizona Memorial

Diamond Head

Day 4-8: Drew had his conference these days. I would exercise and hang out at the beach. Drew got to hang out on the beach with me one day for about an hour. On day 8, we got to see the Beach Boys in concert and John Stamos performed with them!

Day 9: We went to Hanauma Bay to go snorkeling and it was AH-MAZING! We even saw a huge turtle! Then we went to North Shore for some shaved ice from Matsumoto's (we heard it was the best and it did NOT disappoint!) and stopped at a North Shore beach. Then we went back to the Laie temple to the visitor's center. After that we stopped for some Loco Moco - a local favorite apparently. I wasn't a huge fan.

Hanauma Bay

North Shore beauty

The temple


Loco Moco...not so delish

Day 10: Our last day! We explored downtown Honolulu and drove around looking at different beaches and then we ended up going back to Matsumoto's for more shaved ice. Then...back to the airport and back to our babies!

The ONLY royal palace on American soil

And that's it! We had so much fun! If you made it all the way to the end of this post, congratulations!