Tuesday, September 24, 2013

We LOVE New York!

After the walk, it was vacation time!  We headed upstate to the Catskills area (Boiceville to be exact) to see Nickie and Morgan's new weekend cabin.  The place is AH-MAY-ZING.  Beautiful house, adorable towns, breathtaking views.  You could sightsee for days.

Clay made himself right at home and was all smiles exploring his vacation digs.

Nickie, Clay, and I did a little morning exploring down by the creek that is just a short walk from their house.

The famous Woodstock, NY is only about a 20 minute drive.  It is exactly what I expected.  Tie-dye, guitar players, cute shops, and a lot of dudes with long hair.

A late September weekend trip upstate would not be complete without a stop at the local farmer's market.  They had homemade breads that were to DIE FOR!

A little smore time around the campfire.

The Askohan Reservior was some of the most beautiful scenery I have ever seen.  There is an old bridge that is now a 6 mile walking/biking/running trail.  I would give my right arm to get to see these sights on my running path!

Some more pics as we loaded up the car to head back to the city and get dropped off at the airport.  Clay and I missed Luke, Wyatt, and Hazel but were sad to have to go.  Good times always go by too fast.

A huge thank you to my dad, Nickie, and Morgan for making this such a memorable weekend.  We are SO blessed to have such a wonderful, supportive family.  We love you to pieces and can't wait for our next family vaca in Vegas baby! 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Live from New York!

A few weeks ago me, Clay, and my dad took off to New York to visit Nickie and Morgan, see the our picture up on the big screen in Times Square, and participate in the NYC Buddy Walk.

We had such an AMAZING weekend!  The weather was perfect, Clay was such a trooper and went with the flow of the day - something my "schedule babies" don't always handle so well!  I felt so blessed to be joined by Nickie, Morgan, and my dad as we spread a little Down syndrome awareness.

My little travel buddy!
Waiting for the ferry to go see aunt Nickie at work

The video screening was at 10 AM in Times Square and we arrived a little early to soak it all in.  As we walked through the area to join the other video watchers, our Clay's superhero shirts received quite a bit of attention!  For those of you who have been to New York City, you know this is kinda a big deal because even the lady wearing a purple wig and a cone bra doesn't get a second look from the locals.

Times Square is loud and there were a ton of people buzzing around - some even dressed in costumes.  Clay was a little apprehensive at first but warmed up a bit with the help of some Goldfish crackers.

A big thanks to Morgan for snapping some great shots! 

We got a lot of this look from the Clay man that day
In Clay's defense, they were a little scary 

When the video began, my eyes immediately filled with tears.  Aw, excitement, joy, proud mama moment....and a flood of memories of the past couple years and our journey into the world of special needs.

My favorite part of the whole Times Square experience was the joy of a boy and his family who were standing next to us.  He was probably 14 or 15 years old and SO handsome.  When his picture came up on the big screen, you would have thought he won the lottery.  Jumping, laughing, screeching with excitement, followed by high fives and fist bumps for anyone in his general vicinity.  

It was awesome.  Pure awesomeness.  

I REALLY hope we get to come back sometime when Clay is older so he can experience that same joy.  Being "different" doesn't always make life easy; getting their moment to shine is so well deserved.

Being a movie star is exhausting

Here is the YouTube version of the video.  Our picture is at 4:30 but you should watch the whole thing.  There are some great facts about Down syndrome and some seriously cute kids spreading awareness!

After the video, we headed to Central Park to do the New York City Buddy Walk.  This is considered the national walk and kicks off Down syndrome awareness month in October.

Go team Clay!

ANOTHER nap for our super Clay

Clay was getting A LOT of attention.  That hair!  That cape!  Sweet boy just wanted to be left alone!

Clay, you are a superhero in my eyes as well as many others.  Your determination, smile, and extra chromosome have rocked our world in a way that we didn't even know was possible.  Thank you for being you and helping me to be a better version of myself.