Thursday, August 25, 2016

Pooles Take Baton Rouge - Part 1

For the Fourth of July, Wade and I knew we wanted to take a trip with the babies somewhere special, just our little family of 6.  Needing a quick getaway to celebrate one of my most favorite holidays, we found the Freedom Festival in Baton Rouge and decided to take the long weekend and make an entire field trip out of it!!  #homeschoollife

Before we left, though, Samuel reminded me of his big sister when he climbed back into the tub after he was already in his jammies.. and couldn't have looked happier, hahaa!!

Big sister, Savannah, at about Samuel's age now - 18 months!!
Nothing like a tub of cold water after you're already in your warm jammies!!

We left after church on Sunday and arrived at our hotel early that afternoon. Knowing that ALL THE MUSEUMS ARE FREE THE FIRST SUNDAY OF EVERY MONTH, we hurriedly parked and started our adventure right away!!  

Hello, Mississippi River!!

I couldn't help it.  Once I saw the beautiful Old State Capitol, I made the kids immediately stop and take a picture, hahaa!!

THE USS KIDD!!  For a complete history of this battleship, click here.  It's pretty amazing. It's the 661st destroyer built by the US Navy.  It's captain, Admiral Kidd, was killed at Pearl Harbor. It flew the Jolly Roger flag, the only ship in the history of the Navy "to ever have such leave granted to fly the flag of piracy."  She was hit by a Japanese kamikaze, rescued downed pilots, fought off enemy fleets, gave early warnings about torpedoes, the stories go on.. It was incredible and for a lover of history like myself, she was a true honor to board.

Ready for our very first museum to explore!!

I love adventuring with these people!!

All aboard!!

It was cloudy, but still OH, SO HOT.  Bless you, Wadie, for holding Samuel so I could take pictures!!  Wade was our tour guide and explained what each stop was for!!

Little gunner man.

This is from the USS KIDD website:
It was here, just ninety miles east of Okinawa, that KIDD suffered her most severe damage of the war. The date was Wednesday, April 11, 1945.  A lone suicide bomber crashed into her forward boiler room, killing everyone inside. The bomb carried by the kamikaze was catapulted through the ship and out the other side, where it detonated just seconds later. Thirty-eight men were killed; fifty-five were wounded. 

The plaque on the ship in memory of these soldiers:

The kamikaze struck the boat right. here.

Some views inside:

Private Pooles in the kitchen!!

Red faces, but ready to to venture on!!

At the very front of the ship!!  Ahoy, Captain!!

"Hiiii-yah" is what I'm pretty sure Brother shouted every time he made his little salute!!

With my little Captain Cutie. ;))

Front view of the ship:

Getting all our ducks in a row. ;))

Going below deck!!

Hiii-yahing again by the missiles.

Captain's wheel to steer the ship!!

We all got a turn to ring the bell..

And sit in the gun swing sling thing...

This bunk room (which they rent our for sleepovers!!) was the only air-conditioned spot on the boat.  We came down here for a little breather!!

Piece of a Japanese plane..

V for Victoryyyyy!!

Everyone got a turn to put a helmet on and work the guns!!

At this point, everyone had taken in about as much history as they could for the day, ha!!  But it wasn't over yet!!  We headed inside to the USS Kidd Museum ((WITH blessed air conditioning!!))

This wall showed the names of the fallen American soldiers in the Vietnam war, written in the order that they were killed..

...and precious Wade looked and found a member of his family!!  Richard D. Randall.

Last stop as the museum was closing:

Hahaa, love this time with you, my babies!!

Right outside of the museum:

So, so neat to see it all!!  I loved stressing to the kids the importance of learning and appreciating our country's history, and hope trips like this inspire them to become godly and wise leaders themselves..  for they are our future.

Walking just a few yards down the road, we stopped in at the Louisiana Art and Science Museum!! While the kids really needed to be a little older to appreciate it, they loved the Toddler Room which was like a small children's museum!

I couldn't take pictures inside, but this cutie little cart was waiting for us on the outside, and oh my goodness - yes, please, and thank you!!

Strawberry Gelato made with Ponchatoula strawberries?!  Perfection.

While we indulged, we enjoyed the view across the street.

This bearded boy loved his chocolate ice cream.  Can you tell??

Our hotel for the weekend!!  I thought it was SO pretty!!

And after arriving and unloading, I knew the Lord had planned this entire weekend for us.  He had a specific purpose.. and after about 10 minutes upstairs, I knew what it was.  There was a knock at the door and when I opened it, a familiar voice said, "Well, it's only been a decade."
AHHHHHHHH!!!!  One of my dearest friends from church and school growing up had been working the front desk when we passed through the lobby.  Recognizing us, she came upstairs and was able to meet all of our babies, catch us up on her life, and we exchanged phone numbers, now able to keep in touch!!  I almost passed out when I saw her and couldn't stop squealing and screaming and hugging her!!  Hahaa!!  Lord.. only You could have done that!!  What perfect timing!! What a sweet reunion!!  YOU. ARE. SO. GOOD!!!!!!!
For the rest of the evening, we took the kids swimming (our pool overlooked the Mississippi River.. which was muddy brown, but it still felt a tiny bit exotic, HA!).  We went inside, showered, got in our jammies, and then rode together to pick up dinner - Chipotle, yuuuum.  We got back to our room, ate dinner in a circle on the floor, and then curled up in bed.  It was blissful.
We all needed a good night's rest, too.. for the next day was the FOURTH OF JULY IN DOWNTOWN BATON ROUGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!  That post, coming up next!! 


  1. I'm pretending that you are izzos instead of chipotle.
    On a serious note-- it looks like the kids had a blast!

  2. This is such a fun and festive trip! I love it!! And that pic of Vannie in the tub was always one of my faves!!


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From childhood friends to high school sweethearts, and now newlyweds and brand-new parents, Wade and I can only thank Jesus for His incredible blessings. Our three children are the ULTIMATE gifts from God and we pray that our lives glorify Him. He is our everything.