NYC was fun

Last weekend I decided to take the family to New York City for 4 days. We left Thursday and had a fun flight out of town. The kids were happy, I had been telling them all week the fun things we could do. It was a huge planning process. I forgot Sarah used to handle all of those things. Now it’s on me to figure things out. We were able to stay COVID safe. We all wore our masks and protected the girls by making a circle around them anywhere we went. They are not vaccinated so it was important to me to do our best. It’s hard keeping a mask on the baby but she’s doing much better.

I took everyone out to see the Statue of Liberty on a tour. The ferry ride out was interesting. We clustered away from most of the group. We found out we could not go up to the top or even go in the pedestal but that’s okay. Just standing outside and looking up was amazing. I have done that tour a few times. In fact somewhere on this blog is a photo of me with Lady Liberty in the background. We all had a great time. I think it’s some place we need to visit again this year.

So the Delta variant is here. That’s scary. It sounds to me like even if you are vaccinated, you can still catch it. So we are back to wearing masks, not going out much and social distancing. I don’t know when this will end but I do know that people that claim to not want the vaccine, will catch COVID and will be hospitalized. You can think you won’t get it, but some day you will and then you go through hell and regret that decision. Joe Biden has really turned things around and I am so thankful most of the kids have their shots already. Please continue to wear your mask, social distance and do your best to gather in small groups if you must. I did notice in NYC there was a huge surge in safety and health protocols. Trey had asked if we could ride the Subway but I said no. That’s too enclosed. Everything we did was a timed tour with just our little group involved. We had food delivered or I had my car service stop and pick it up for us on our way to or from places. That worked out the best.

Our next trip we are going on a car ride up to Steamboat Springs. I’m trying to get familiar with Colorado. We have not done much exploring. I am getting more into the local shopping. I love supporting small local businesses. I try to buy something even if I don’t find something I love. I can always use it as a gift.

I’m trying to plan a trip to Cancun, Mexico soon but with Covid restrictions that may not happen. There are a lot of International trips I had planned but I’m backing off of them. Not all of the world has been lucky enough to have the vaccines. It’s still not fully safe to move around the world like we used to. I’m going to be doing more road trips until things get a better outlook. Hope you guys are staying safe. I will add my photos into my photo section on here. Thank you guys for reading this and have a great week!

I took a Buzzfeed quiz

I shared my results with my nannies. They all agreed.

Have You Ever Wondered If You’re An Asshole?

Take This Test And Find Out

No, you’re not an asshole That’s right. Sometimes, people might think you’re a dick. But the reality is that you are a good-hearted person on the inside. You care about people. You care about everything and everyone around you. You might not have the best social skills, but that doesn’t make you an asshole. Keep being you.

Well that’s good to know. It’s what I have always thought about myself. I know I can be a dick sometimes. Ask Kate Lol She knows, but it’s very rare. Most of the time I’m upbeat, happy, joking around. I love to laugh. I have a lot of fun in life. It’s because I’m tired or I’m frustrated with something when I can be a dick. It’s short lived. Give me about 5 to 10 minutes, and it will stop. At least I can admit it. I’m not perfect.

What else is going on? More cleaning. I’m getting closer and closer to hiring a maid service. I can move everyone out to the guest house while they clean. That way we have no interaction with them. That may be the best case because at this point I’m exhausted.

Oh, I am taking my family out of town next weekend. I have been in quarantine for a week waiting for Canada to get their shi** together. They apparently took that to mean, let’s not mask up, lets not social distance. Let’s try to beat America on Covid cases. It’s ridiculous. So now no shot of me crossing the board, Ontario is on a 6 week lockdown. No sense quarantine myself anymore. We are out of here. I’m so excited. I need to pick a spot then check out all of the Covid restrictions. We will not be going into town for any reason. We are going to rent and AirBnB close to a town and do outdoor stuff. Away from people. The only time I might be around folks is getting the rental cars. That may be in. I think we will be okay. I have no idea where we want to go. I’m going to start that discussion tonight at Family Meeting. It should be entertaining.

I’m dreaming of somewhere WARM! I would love to sit on a private beach and do nothing for an entire weekend. That would be heaven. I need it. I’m beat up. I’m so tired from doing everything, worrying about the kids. It’s draining. I want to also have some fun. We haven’t been doing much big fun things recently. I would love to hear my kids laugh and play. I think my nannies will be happy if we get out of here for a few days.

What do I do with Sarah? She has her baby. They are kind of a load Lol You have to take both of them and the baby stuff. It would be nice if we all got along but that never happens. I need to think about it. It may depend on some good behavior this week. I don’t know. Brenda and Lynn do enjoy getting off of work and going to their home. They come back the next day appreciative, refreshed, in a good mood. A nice weekend away would be a small treat.

What’s the Covid numbers in Miami Beach? How about South Padres? Malibu? I don’t know. I’m going to start looking up AirBnB rentals now. I’m excited to go!

I just thought about renting an RV, but I would rather line up my kids, and let them each kick me in the nut sack before I pile us all into an RV for 3 days Lol No way that will ever happen. I’m done camping. I don’t mind hiking or kayaking but I’m all done setting up tents, cooking, and trying to wrangle my kids out in the woods. We camp in my backyard. That I can do. Cross RV off the list, cross of camping, and any type of theme park. Too soon for Covid life. Where should we go?

She’s my Bahama bikini mama

Guys, I’m really tan right now. I’m so happy to be home. The boys had their last day of school on Friday and we decided to celebrate with a trip to my favorite vacation spot, the Bahamas. I took Stephanie with me and 1 nanny to help out at night. The nanny said sign her up for every trip this summer because she had a blast. Stephanie asked when we can come back I said we can come back 1 more time this summer if she wanted. That was a solid yes vote. The kids had so much fun playing in the sand and water. We actually got to go on 2 excursions of sightseeing this time around. I had never done that before. It was easy sitting in the back of the jeep while they showed us around. It really is a beautiful part of the country.

At night Stephanie and I snuck off for some adult fun. She looked so beautiful. I mean really really pretty. She was so happy all weekend and I think she’s starting to fall in love with me too. We still haven’t talked about it. I’m not ready. My dusty heart is waking up though and it feels really good. It feels right. My kids adore her and are starting to get attached to her. We are still going to do 2 nights a week for now and switch off weekends at each others’ homes so we can still get the kids acclimated.

In other news I have this entire summer planned out. I’ve been working on it since January. We actually have a schedule of when we are traveling and when we will stay home. We won’t be staying home much Lol Especially once Friday hits and Steph is off work. I asked if she wanted to go on our next trip next time and she said yes. That’s in 2 weeks. Alex is doing great but I don’t want to push his little lungs. We are back on the medicine that cleared him up and it helps a lot. Heston is great, Peace is great. Everyone is great.

I’m happy. I really am things are so chill right now I love it.

I came on to tell you guys a quick update but mostly to share some more photos. Head over to our Family Facebook page to check out all of the photos I uploaded last night and this morning. It takes time to upload then label them and put them in the right albums. But as you will see it’s more organized now. I worked hard on it last night when I got the kids to bed. The beard is gone Lol Yes I look 12. Okay not really but I still look kinda young.

How are things? I missed you all. Especially one of my readers who I stopped talking to at the top of this month. I see you still come here. I’m happy you still care. You will always be a dear friend to me but we can’t talk right now. We keep finding out way back to each other, don’t we. I mean I don’t know why but there’s something. So be safe, know I do miss you and I’m sure some day we will find each other again.

I love you guys, talk to you again this week! Go check out my smoking hot girlfriend in a bikini. Dammmmmnnnn I’m a lucky boy!

It’s sandy daddy, why?

Hi from the Bahamas!

My kids love it here. The weather has been perfect everyday so far. I’m sunburnt, the kids are okay, and they don’t want to go home. I keep asking just in case one of them cracks. The water feels amazing in the heat of the day. It really is nice being on vacation and finally not having to cater to everyone else I’m with. I have real help this time. I didn’t know it would be this easy. I told the 2 nanny (friends) that came along we need to do this more often Lol Although I’m sure my buddy wants his wife and sister back soon. I just posted about 40 photos from this trip to our family Facebook page and I also uploaded the other photos from my phone and Ipad. I think you guys are all caught up on photos. I took this great photo of Peace splashing both of her brothers and she has the most incredible smile on her face. She really is a part sweet and a part naughty Lol She knew not to splash them but she did it anyway. The boys have been so helpful with her this time. They are growing up and I think they innately understand she’s the baby and needs extra attention. We have gotten in some serious beach time, then some doubly serious nap time Lol I think all of this sun is making us sleepy.

Jesse is having the best time. I know this because she keeps saying that to me. We have had 2 romantic dinners together and have found a little alone time here or there during the day. It’s nice to have someone with me that just wants to chill and have fun. She has made this trip very relaxing for me. I really have enjoyed getting to know her more and sharing some of my life with her. She didn’t realize all I had going on. I’m not very boastful about everything so a lot of people close to me are’t aware. I’m trying to balance my work/home/vacation life and I can honestly say, from here, I got it.

Should we move to the Bahamas??? Yes!! Are we going to??? No Lol I wish.

I do think we need to make this a yearly trip though. I already don’t want to go home and we are 5 days from it. I needed this guys. I really did. I also needed that couples massage we are about to get. Rub my legs and my sore feet please! All of this walking and chasing sandy coated babies around the beach has made me a little sore.

Hope you are staying warm or at least trying to back in the States. I will update again this week. Love you guys. I will be home soon!

Vacation anyone? Okay

We will be leaving tomorrow for our 1 week vacation. We will get home late Sunday night next week. I’m really looking forward to the warm weather and playing with my kids in the ocean/sand. It’s going to be so much fun. I’ve hired 2 nannies to help me. Okay, well they aren’t nannies. They are friends of mine who wanted to go Lol We are also taking Jesse. It’s going to be our first trip together. We had a lengthy discussion about getting 1 room for her or she shares my room. Then it turned into okay we share a room, but 2 beds? We settled on a shared room with 2 beds in case she feels like it’s weird but she said or we can just mess up both beds Lol Soooooo I’m thinking this vacation is already awesome and we haven’t even gotten there yet!

Sun, sand, nothing to do but play with the kids all day. It sounds perfect. I’m almost done packing up for all of us but I’m still not sure what else we need. Oh well I will figure it out. I have someone coming to stay at the house all week to take care of my dog, my 2 cats, and the damn birds. I really wish the cats would get used to the birds instead of trying to eat them every morning. They also both sit underneath the cage and plot how to jump high enough to knock it down Lol

I hope everyone has a great week coming up. Stay warm and enjoy the week ahead! I will miss you guys. Love ya’ll, see you soon!

#Dublin #Ireland Day 3

Where am I at? Oh day 3. Okay. The third day we had spent a lot of time with my wife’s Irish family. They were sharing so many funny stories and really explained to us about how and why a lot of them stayed in Ireland. Her parents obviously did not. They left in the 1970s because it was getting too dangerous and they wanted to move far away. I don’t blame them after reading some of the books I had read before we got there.

Me and a few others went and grabbed bagels, donuts, and Starbucks for everyone so we could eat and get going for the day. This was the day we all stayed together, all day. Huge mistake. We are better off in smaller groups. The dymanic of all of my wives’ siblings all grouped up can be overwhelming. My boys aren’t so good in crowds yet anyway so actually being a part of one wasn’t their favorite thing. We struggled with them a lot this day. After lunch I took them home myself and hung out for a few hours.

This was the day we really looked at our Dublin passes for all the great things you can do.

I better add the website for anyone that’s thinking of going to Dublin soon.

https://www.dublinpass.com/dublin-attractions/?aid=171

I think it’s 40 things you can do and it saves you a lot of money. With a big group like this we were going to go to all of the sights we could and this pass gave us a lot of free info on each site. It was a very good deal also. My wife found out about it and made sure we bought some asap.

We decided to do the 2 cathedrals in the morning. I wanted to see if they would bless my boys and our new baby. They did which was very cool. I appreciate both Churches doing that for me. It was selfish but I just thought it would be a good thing to do. And let’s face it, with my luck as much of God’s help as I can get, I need to take it.

We went to St Patrick’s Cathedral first. Wow. It’s huge first of all but all of the great history. You can read about it here:

https://www.dublinpass.com/dublin-attractions/st-patricks-cathedral.html

Built in honor of Ireland’s patron saint, St Patrick’s Cathedral is one of the most important historic landmarks in Dublin. Dating back to 1191 to the site of an ancient well where, legend has it, St Patrick used to baptise new converts into Christianity, St Patrick’s Cathedral has played a vital role throughout Ireland’s social, cultural and spiritual history. Walk through the nave and see the 200 monuments and impressive alter which makes St Patrick’s so breath-taking.

That’s the little info from their website. This is what we thought about going inside.

https://www.facebook.com/stpatrickscathedral/

My wife’s family was very proud to show us this on our trip. It’s the Irish equivalent of the New York Cathedrals, all historic, all beautiful, all very well known. I had been reading articles on this place for a few months not only because my wife kept printing them out, but because she said it’s more than just a Church. It’s a spiritual parcel. You have to walk onto the grounds to feel a shift in your spirit. It really is a holy ground. I loved how detailed all of the rooms are. You go from one to the other and just see all of these great tapestries, banners, and very colorful decorations. They welcome you and they want to show you around. We had called ahead to get a tour time set up so we had our own little group going together. That’s why all of us stayed together for this. My father in law acted like it was his vacation home and we let him. He kept grinning and puffing out his chest as he walked. One of my brother in law’s said Look Dad’s bursting and he really was. We got to sit in for a service which I was very excited about. I wondered what the difference between Irish Catholic Mass and American Catholic Mass was. It’s not that much different except the blessings are much much longer. They really are proud of their Church and we loved learning about it. There’s so much more to see and we tried to fit it all in but we missed the 2 famous graves that are there. We ran out of time but I told my wife, next year we will make sure to come back and see it all. She agreed.

 

We were shuttled off to the next Church and I have to say it was equally beautiful. A little less decorative and a little more stoic. You walk in and are blown away by all of the grandness of it.

https://www.dublinpass.com/dublin-attractions/christ-church-cathedral.html

Christ’s Church Cathedral is also huge. It’s the oldest building in all of Dublin. They have a crypt built there from the 11th Century I think they said. We were there in time for another service and we got to see their choir. Now that was amazing! So beautiful and very harmonious. My wife teared up just in time for my boys to start fussing so I had to take them both outside to walk around a little. Sarah came with me and she said it really is an amazing trip and thanked me. She said she had called her mom a few times to tell her everything and she said her mom said to tell me thank you for taking her. I told them both when I hired her I would show her the world and take care of her the rest o her life. I hope she believes me. She must have she’s still here after I told her it’s twins! Lol I realized how thankful I was too. God is showing me a little piece of his heart with all of these great sights and I know I need to do more to praise him. I try everyday to share his word with people and offer my prayers several times a day. I am very humbled by all of these things we keep experiencing and I am also proud to be able to afford to take all of these people with me. My boys did calm down enough for us to go back in. My wife said we missed 4 songs but that’s okay. There is always next year. As we were leaving we were in time to hear the bells tolling. Wow. Such a huge bell and it sounded great. They said it had been replaced a few years ago because the old one had hung there for 70 something years? Amazing sound.

After that we decide to go eat. I thought they said they just wanted to go back home to eat but one of the Irish cousins said we weren’t too far from The Bull and Castle.

Bull and Castle is a pub that serves really interesting food. We tried 10 different things on the menu. Most everyone got steak or burgers. I went for the salad with my boys but we got to also try some nachos. The place is so huge we went upstairs to eat. My wife got the buttermilk chicken and said it was the best she’d ever had. I tried a bite and it was okay. A little too greasy for me. Not a big fan of the animal heads all over but the photos on the walls were nice. It was loud in there. It was pretty packed for a lunch. Great place to eat!

700 years ago the Vikings took over Dublin for a time period that is well documented. We were all full and wanting a nap but this was the one place I was really pumped up to visit.

Dublinia is an entire medieval experience. You walk in and they immediately start harassing you Lol It was hilarious. My boys were in awe. They both had big eyes looking at all the cool stuff. We learned so much on our tour. The best part was getting to see everything up close. We got to try on some clothing and we shackled up my brother in law who’s the cop. They were going to lash him a few times but his wife said “Maybe tonight” and we all just laughed. Some of the kids didn’t get it but he really laughed at his wife’s comment. They have some really cool souvenirs here too. We got to see one of the battle performances and it was really fun for everyone. They come right up to your group and try to mess with you a little. One of the shirtless Viking guys tried to take my wife and she just laughed and went with them. We found her a few minutes later in a new outfit. She said they converted her and she’s going to live there now Lol Okay babe. It really was a fun experience. I think everyone really liked it.

After that we hit the last stop for the day, Dublin Castle.

I have more photos to put up of it but I did add some to my Facebook the day we went there. It’s this huge sprawling place filled with more Viking stuff but also a great amount of Irish history. I really liked learning how the city went through so many changes. It even shared some of the lesser known tragedies that I hadn’t read about. Some of the Irish cousins even said they hadn’t ever remember learning that. We got to walk around and this place let me use the stroller. Usually we have had to take the boys out and wrangle them. I was very happy I could just push them along. At this point they were getting pretty tired and I think we all were.

We went back to the house and decided to go out for dinner. I fed the boys and left them with Sarah and Brandi for the night. A few of our older relatives wanted to stay in too so I made sure they had plenty to eat and snack on before we left. Heather was finally ready to go out with us at night since it was a much smaller group. We decided to try some Irish cuisine.

The Irish cousins told us to go to Gallagher’s. Boxty is an Irish potato pancake and they leave a bag of the mix you can buy right on your table. I tried a bite and it was very light and good. Great taste. It’s a great location with this huge bar. The bottles go all the way up to the ceiling. Very classy place and it was a great meal. Huge portions of food. You get what you pay for there. It was a nice quiet dinner because everyone was so tired from walking around all day. My wife grabbed my arm and told me she was having the best time. I thought that was sweet. I was really trying hard to make sure everyone was okay. I felt bad for my boys. I knew 3 tourist things in a row would be too much but they held in there as long as they could. My wife said her feet were a little sore but she would make me rub them later before bed Lol Anything my pregnant wife wants, she can have!

We made it home and some folks went out to a Pub nearby. They just wanted a nightcap. I think no one stayed out too late that night. I don’t know I was sawing logs around midnight again. My boys slept in from all the fresh air and traveling around so I was happy about that. The next day we were going to the zoo so they really needed their rest.

#notbatmanyet #SamuelJacobCooper

 

#Dublin #Ireland Day 2

We all got a decent night sleep except the drunk family members and 1 nanny that tried to out drink Irishmen Lol Good luck on that one Brandi. We got up, had a great breakfast that was quick and easy than we packed up some backpacks for haul around for the day.

In the morning our entire group toured my wife’s family farm. It’s right outside of Dublin and has been in her family for 6 generations. That’s a very long time. Her great x 5 bought it because it has a small creek running through it and he thought it would be a great place to live. He got married soon after and had 9 kids. I see now where that tradition started. It’s a very beautiful family farm and nothing at all like the farms in Nebraska. They have all of the modern-day equipment but they don’t irrigate like we do. I found that very interesting. I asked how they do it and they use a system of man-made or non man-made aqueducts that feed into each other. How cool is that? We just pipe water in from the nearest, whatever there is really. This system has worked for the farms around the area for over a hundred and something years. I thought it was very cool and had a lot of questions about it but no one else seemed so excited. Everyone else just wanted to pet or feed the animals. The 3 houses on the land aren’t close together. They are spread out but we took the trucks out to visit each one. We spent about 5 hours out there and came back into the city for lunch.

We ate at a place called Paulie’s Pizza. They have very good food there. My wife loved the pizza and pasta. Some of her sisters got sandwiches. I guess it’s a pretty good place to eat at. A little small for our group but fast service. It was a nice place to relax plus my wife’s cousins kept bragging about how good the pizza was. They were right.

After lunch my nannies took the boys back to the house for a few hours so they could rest up for the night’s activities. We were going to be hosting family for a cookout. We split up into 2 groups. The men went to the Guinness Storehouse and any woman who wanted to join us did. We had a few. The women went to a full tour of the Cliffs of Mohr. I had no desire to go look at cliffs. I’ve seen photos, they look cool, I’ve seen cliffs before.

The storehouse is in St. James’s Gate which isn’t so bad. The place is huge and crowded. I think it was 6 or 7 stories tall. The history of the place was amazing. I really like learning how the brand started and has kept a long, great legacy for so many years. My gosh I think it’s probably the #1 tourist spot Lol After the tour and the smells of aromatic beers of all kinds you get to go up and get a free pint. You can also sit and enjoy the view except there’s not much to look at from up there. I liked that we got a free Guinness Dublin glass with our pass. We bought Dublin passes for everyone. It offers 30 attractions and that way we can plan out which days to go do what things and people could decide. I really thought everyone wanted to go to the Guinness thing but women just aren’t into that kind of thing. And my wife said she’s been around Guinness her whole life she doesn’t need to see how it’s stored Lol I just laughed at that one. She really is funny. I love her.

My wife said they had a girl tourist guide named Sara who was very nice and knowledgable. She said she loved getting there and looking around. She did take some amazing photos. All of them did however she said it was way too long and she learned her lesson. I told her doing anything that involved a bus and a guide, don’t do it Lol I learned from my Greece trip last year. Never again! She said it was something that was easy for all ages and she really thought it would be more than just looking at the cliffs. I said it’s just like the Grand Canyon with no edge on one side. She said it’s beautiful and she’s really happy she went. They all prayed for our family at the cliffs and offered a pray for all of American because they heard our President is nuts Lol Agreed, Ireland, I agree!

We all met up back at the house and got ready for dinner.

We grilled out a bunch of fish and veggies that night. Everyone was pretty tired from the long day and we had some Irish family come hang out at the rentals. We stayed up until 2am talking. I think we all crashed and slept in. My babies woke me up at 6am. I do remember that but I was able to get them back down for another hour.

Great place to vacation with kids!

The photos from this day are now on my Facebook page if anyone wants to go see them.

#notbatmanyet #SamuelJacobCooper