Sunday, August 3, 2008

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic 2008

Our summer vacation for 2008 was finally here! This is the trip that Chris' Grandma takes the family on EVERY summer! We left bright and early for the Dominican Republic on Saturday morning to start our trip off. We plucked Charlotte out of bed somewhere around 3:00 AM that morning. She did great while traveling, but as you can see, even the lack of sleep got the best of her on the plane when we were finally in the air.

At the Dominican Republic airport, we surprisingly departed the plane on the tarmack, and walked to the airport. The humidity and sticky heat hit us immediately. We couldn't wait for the ocean breeze.

We stayed at the Iberostar Dominicana at Punta Cana. Here are some of the grounds.

As usual, Chris was very entertained by the wildlife at the resort.

Charlotte and Jeff sharing a banana.

This was our room to the left and Pat & Kristy's. We were the closest to the ocean, but you couldn't walk right out onto the beach. However, the breeze from the beach was great, especially when we would sit outside at night and play cards after the kids went to bed. It was also nice having our rooms next to each other because when the kids napped, we took turns as couples doing something fun for an hour each day while the other two stayed back and listened for the kids.

The grounds were very well kept.

This is some of the little shops we walked past each day to go to the buffet. If I looked left, I could see the ocean.

This was the first night we went to dinner together. If you look closely, you can see Charlotte's new favorite shirt.

Here is a better picture of her shirt and Jefferson's too.

Playing a game with Aunt Jenn

Charlotte loved the pool. She splashed and splashed and had fun crawling around in the shallow end. This was the kiddie pool, but since there wasn't much shade in it, we didn't stay there long.

Charlotte getting her first look at the ocean this year. It was alright for a little bit, and then a wave hit her, barely splashed her face. I think some salt must have gotten in her eye because she wasn't too happy. Then, when we sat her on the beach, she didn't like that too much, especially when a ball from a soccer game came and hit her in the head (it didn't knock her over). It could have hit one of the 4 people around her, but instead it chose her. I think that also created some negative feelings about the beach. The picture below is how she acted when we took her to the beach any other time.... She would cling to Chris as if it were life or death...funny. So we spent a lot of time in the pool with her.

That's more like it...

Steve and Terry strolling after dinner.

Our Water Baby

Jefferson also had a great time in the pool. He was much more daring than Charlotte, putting his head in the water and jumping from the side of the pool into Pat's arms.

The water in most places in the pool was 5'5", so too tall for me to touch. Chris had to taake Charlotte in the deeper water, unless she was on her floatie.

After dinner one evening...

More poolside pics...
I am so thankful that these two get a long so well. I think they have been so lucky to grow up together.
I love this one....she looks like a movie star to me here...

Family Photo...

They had water aerobics every day at 12:00. It was pretty interesting to people watch here. People are not shy about their bodies at all, or what their bodies are doing while doing aerobics.

Charlotte chasing some geese.

We didn't have the opportunity to use Charlotte's walker every day, as when we finally put her down for a nap after being in the pool, she was zonked, and then when she got up, we usually got ready for dinner. But, this day, we found some time and she had a blast.

I love this layed back pose.

Looking toward the ocean from a bench near our room.

There was a beautiful tree in front of our room with gorgeous red blossoms. We thought it made for a cute picture for Charlotte this year (especially since we knew we wouldn't get a good beach one).

Family Photo

Chris' Grandma and her son, Brian from North Carollina

Pat, Kristy and Jefferson

Another Family Photo Me showing off Charlotte's pig tails. She looks so girlie with them.

I love these pictures of Chris and Charlotte. They have such a special bond together and you can just see how much she loves her Daddy. In the picture below, she is rubbing noses, a new thing we taught her.

We made a point to get a picture with Aunt Kim this night because before Charlotte was born, she gave me this dress at my baby shower when we didn't know if we were having a boy or girl. I am so glad Charlotte has gotten to wear it.

It was Grandma Clara's Birthday on July 30th. We usually plan the trip around her birthday.

This was the night we went to the Oriental Restaurant. They had the best food by far.

And finally, at the airport once again. The day before we left, we got a note saying that the Dominican Republic was going on strike and we would have to leave our resort at 4:20 AM because the roads would be closed for traffic between 5:30 AM and 5 PM. We were a bit nervous and frustrated since our flight didn't leave for Miami until 2:20 PM. That means we spent 8 hours in the Dominican airport with 2 toddlers! Wow, we did it, but it was sure a long day. We got up at 2:30 AM St. Louis time and got home finally at 10:30 PM. I have never been so excited to be back in the US!

Trying to stay entertained in the airport with Great Grandma Clara

One last picture of Sharlie, lookin' cute.

Well...this isn't Charlotte. And I guess if you haven't figured it out yet, I guess I'll just let you all know that Charlotte's t-shirt said "Sister to BEE". This would be her younger sibling a couple of weeks ago. So far everything is going well, and the heartbeat was strong at 156. We have waited to tell everyone because on our trip we surprised Chris' family that both Charlotte and Jeff are going to be big brithers and sisters. Kristy is about 1 1/2 weeks ahead of me so we are in this together. Chris and I are hoping for the best and staying optimistic. We would love any prayers for our new little one especially for his/her health as we know that a healthy baby is so such a gift. Some of you may think we are brave, and some of you may be shocked or scared, but just know that we have faith. And we know that no matter what, God is with us. We wanted a family and we feel that we shouldn't let fear stand in the way of that. Faith is stronger.

We will keep you posted on ultrasounds, etc. We get a target ultrasound done between 14-16 weeks and again between 18-20 weeks. Hopefully, we will be able to see all of the major anatomy at those ultrasounds (especially the cerebellum) and put our minds at ease. I am 9 1/2 weeks today, with a due date somewhere around March 5th. Let's hope we get there this time!!!

The Hawns


Anonymous said...

SO happy for you!!!
Kelly W.

Uncle Rich & Aunt Kathleen said...

So happy to hear your news! Please keep us posted...

Love from Aunt Kathleen, Uncle Rich, Alyssa & Jameson

The Frost Family said...

Jenn, Chris, and litte Char,

We are so excited for your new little blessing on the way! This little boy or girl is going to have a wonderful mom and dad and big sister to grow up with. We will say lots of prayers that this time goes super easy.

Congrats again,
Emmy, Tyler, and Aidan

Meghan and Jayson said...

Yay! Congratulations!
Love, Meghan & Jayson

John & Kelly said...

Congratulations again! We're so excited and happy for you! Charlotte is going to be great big sister!

Kelly, John &William

Anonymous said...

I wish I could have gone with you. It looks like you all had a great time! Congratulations on your great news! You too are such great parents, and I know Charlotte would make a great big sis'

Aunt Kelly

dickinsonfamily said...

I just wanted to tell you "congratulations" again, and how sincerely happy we are for you! We have been praying, and will continue to do so for this little baby. Let's get to March!

Thanks for sharing all the vacation pictures as well. They're great, and I'm glad you all had a fantastic time.

Anonymous said...

Congrats Jenn!!!!!!!!!!!

Zehr_Family said...

I am so happy for you all and will pass along your prayer request to our church family here in Colorado. We have been praying for you everyday since you went into the hospital with Charlotte. We will have faith that God will take care of this little one and you! Charlotte will make a wonderful big sister because she has great parents to follow after.

Kristi Zehr
Trinidad, Colorado