A family vacation

Ryan and I typically take a vacation every summer:
- 2011 Montreal
- 2011 West Coast road trip (Washington, Oregon and California)
- 2010 Southern Illinois and Missouri
- 2009 Atlanta
- 2008 San Francisco

However, with Henry arriving this year, we didn’t plan a trip. (Good thing, too, since he made his arrival a little early.)

But, we did decide to have our first true family road trip with Henry last week. Ryan took off work (I’m still on maternity leave) and we drove six hours (although it took a bit longer with the little guy) to the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri. My parents have a condo down there for the summer and invited us to join them.

It was a really nice trip. Henry did great in the car – sleeping much of the way. And we got to relax (and even do a lot of sleeping since my mom was more than happy to get up during the night with Henry), enjoy the sunshine and even try some new things with our son.

This is quite a view for Henry during naptime.

And not such a bad view to get a bottle, either.

He got plenty of attention during the time away.

Most of the days, we left Henry at home in the condo with my mom while we enjoyed some time on the boat. Ryan, my dad and I did some cruising, some lounging and some swimming in the mean time …

Henry did a different kind of lounging.

But, he did get a chance to ride in the boat (he loved it) in his brand new life jacket. He may not look like he liked this contraption, but he fell asleep in it almost right away and never really fussed. Babies are strange.

We even took the boat to a restaurant. Yes. We had a baby. In a bar. (Name that movie.)

Technically, they were restaurants. See? He likes it. ;) (We are actually really lucky that he loves being in noisy places. He was a happy boy.)

Since the pool water was as warm as bath water (and he loves the bath), we wanted to see what he thought of it. He mostly slept through the few minutes we had him in the pool the first time.

The second time we tried, he stayed awake but seemed indifferent to the entire thing.

He was so cute in his swimming gear.

But, most of the time, he did a lot of this.

It was definitely a new type of vacation for the Woodwards. Slower paced. Lots of focus on Henry and his sleep and eating schedule. (And I’m so thankful for grandma and grandpa being so much help with him.)

We couldn’t help but talk about all that Henry will be able to do next year – get in the water, go to the beaches … I think that we’ve found a new family tradition. (I do love traditions.) I spent time almost every summer at the lake. I think our little guy may be doing the same.


  1. Looks like such a fun trip and Henry looks adorable in his little bouyancy aid!

  2. I’m not sure how I did it but i think I picked a fave. Henry in his little sink bath is quite possibly the cutest thing ever. Followed by his little swim trunks. I can’t believe how much he is growing! Well yes I can, I know that happens, but still.

    This trip looks pretty much perfect and I’m so glad your mom and dad got to spend so much time with him!

  3. We just got back from Myrtle Beach and had a very similar experience: awesome grandparents, SLEEP, and lots of life revolving around milk & poop. ;) I’m glad you guys had fun!

    btw: where did you get that awesome swimming suit? It’s fabulous! You look amazing!!

  4. Glad you guys had fun! Great pictures!

  5. Looks like you guys had a fantastic time – although I did pout a little to read ‘lake of the ozarks” since we are only an hour or so away and haven’t been all summer.

    You look amazing btw. I’m feeling whale-ish.

  6. Looks like a fun time was had by all. Could your folks be any happier??? Henry is so loved and nurtured that he feels comfy sleeping anywhere. Glad you and Ryan had some time to yourselves too. What a blessing family can be!

  7. You look so cute in the bucket hat!!

  8. You look so cute in the bucket hat!!

  9. Holy views!! Good work parental units!!

    Glad you all had a good time. I’m digging your hat. And Henry’s swim get-up!

  10. What a fun time! As a native Missourian, I know the awesomeness that is The Lake. :)

    And that picture of Henry in his little lifejacket? I almost DIED. Soooooo adorable!!

  11. Aah it looks like you were all having a great time! So glad you went away for a bit.

    ps. don’t worry we had our Cat in a pub when she was 6 days old (just to show her off).

  12. what a gorgeous view!! i loved seeing the instagram pics as you were there – but these are even better! i’m so glad you guys are getting to have all of these summer adventures with little henry – and he seems to be loving them! glad you got to have a relaxing vacation and had some extra hands to help :)

    ps – love your suit top!

  13. What a fun trip! Carter’s inaugural lake visit will be in a couple of weeks and I hope he loves it as much as Henry.

    I was just thinking “next year” will be even better because he will be able to do more things:). Carter will let Henry know what cool things there are to do as a 1 year old to prep him for next year. If we are really good planners maybe we could meet up sometime next summer there even if it is just for lunch. You know because we cannot impose on precious grandparent time…

  14. I’m so jealous! This looks like my idea of heaven (including someone else getting up with the babe at night!).

  15. What sweet family pics! He is such a cutie!! Give your mama a big hug next time you see her–you are SO lucky to have a mom who will help out with nighttime stuff. My mom didn’t do any of that. :s

  16. Sweet Home Alabama! What do I win??? :-) just kidding. Looks like you all had a great time! We’re taking Megan to my husband’s parents place in Florida in August. Her first flight will be interesting. I love seeing others traveling with their babes, though. We have to take advantage of this maternity leave, right?

  17. A place at the lake?! You guys are so lucky. My aunt and uncle live on a lake in Michigan and I used to LOVE to go up there for the summer. My parents are not what you’d call outdoorsy, so I’ll just have to live vicariously through you!
    Glad Henry was such a good sport for everything and that you had an amazing time. I love Lake of the Ozarks.

  18. Looks like a wonderful family tradition to start! It must have been nice to have your mom and dad around so you and Ryan could get some R&R. Not gonna lie, that’s why we live within 10 minutes of our parents!

  19. That baby life jacket is hilarious.

  20. the movie is “Sweet Home Alabama”, thankyouverymuch.

    we have Nora in a bar often – it’s our favorite place to eat in Holiday Shores, and one of only two close options. what can ya do.

    looks like you guys had fun. what a great opportunity!


  21. Sugarr2518 says:

    It looks like everyone had a great time! Henry is just too. Cute:)

  22. Debbie @ My Little Mess says:

    I love the Ozarks! Growing up, my grandparents had a trailer pretty much right on the lake so I spent a lot of time there.
    It looks like you guys had a great time! Henry is so cute in his life jacket and swim gear! <3

  23. Tara @ Tara Being Tara says:

    First of all, you look amazing. Like… amazing. Second of all, Henry is starting to look like a Gerber baby. A-dorable. Third, that life jacket is creepy. =)

  24. Looks like a great trip! And that view from the condo is wonderful!

    I could only remember Reese Witherspoon saying that line, but now I see that it was Sweet Home Alabama ;)

  25. He looks so cute in the tub. Great trip, and I”m so IMPRESSED that you rode that far with the baby. We can’t do it now, and we were probably scared to it back then. :) Great photos. So glad you had a nice time.

  26. Anonymous says:

    That’s the part that made me a little jealous about nursing—that no one but me could get up with the baby!

  27. Looks like you had a wonderful time. Love the life vest :)

  28. Looks like you guys had a great time! I especially love the pictures of Henry in his life jacket. So funny!

    Also I love the Sweet Home Alabama reference.. ;)

  29. Looks like you guys had a blast! I vote to annual tradition! Loved seeing all your pics on IG!


  1. [...] also made this trip last year when Henry was only a few months old. (And this is also a trip my family made every year while I was growing up.) I’m reminded [...]

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge