Some of you may remember the post Chris did last year about his family’s Memorial weekend celebration–the Fat Hog 500. If you do, that means you’ve been reading this blog for at least a year and should probably win a prize for sticking it out!
On Thursday we loaded up the car and headed north after work. We typically stop at the good ol’ EconoLodge in Oklahoma City, but we were lucky this time and got to spend the night with the Seacats in their adorable new house. Hazel even gave them a little butt scoot upstairs to help break the place in….geez!!! Anyway, it was great to see our favorite doctors and also have a place to crash on the long trip back to Kansas.
We were up bright and early the next morning, destination: Great Bend. I think I’ve made it pretty clear that I love this place. I love the wide open space, the stars at night, the farm house, and now I have something to add to the list: the barn.
I don’t have any before pictures to share but Chris thinks it’s important that everyone who reads this understands what the barn was like before his parents started working on it. Just picture 30 year-old manure, original barn equipment, and lots and lots of junk that had been accumulated over the years. Even so, it always had a gorgeous exterior going for it…
The brainstorming started a long time ago, but it wasn’t until this last year that my in-laws really got serious about redoing the barn. Cleaning, power-washing, cleaning some more, putting in a new floor…I’d say it all paid off.
I was amazed at the transformation. What once was a dirty stall, is now a pretty slick bar that’s covered in old tin from the farm…
Scattered around the rest of the barn are lots of details that give it even more character.
Turns out my father-in-law was a track star 😉
Those Calcaras love their limoncello.
Since most of the work was done when we arrived (thanks Mark and Mel!), we all got to just hang around and enjoy the new party space on Friday night. Delgado’s, cold beer and cute kids…can’t beat that.
Meet Violet. With the best style of any 3 month old I know, she really inspired me when it comes to her future second-cousin’s wardrobe:)
Little miss Violet and “first-cousin-once-removed Chris”. Yes, we had to look it up, and no it doesn’t have quite the same ring as “Uncle Chris”.
Saturday was the big day, but it started off a little differently than most hog roasts. Melanie and her sister Mary threw a shower for baby Calcara–the “Fat Baby 500”.
I’m pretty sure my jaw hit the floor when I walked into the barn and saw this…
I told Melanie that if I had to plan my own shower, it would be just like this…only this was way better. They thought of every detail and it was beyond adorable.
Pages, Calcaras and GB friends…
Everyone chipped in and purchased our stroller and car seat, which was AMAZING! You better believe, I’m counting down the minutes until we’re home and I can play with these new toys.
We also got lots of great books to start the baby’s collection, and some precious new outfits.
Violet really hooked her second-cuz up!
Yes, that’s a hand-embroidered Hazel onesie made by Chris’ cousin, Megan. I told her I’m moving in with her for a month to learn her crafty ways…and when she gets her business up and running I’ll be her #1 customer!
Hunter tested out the stroller and gave it a thumbs up!
I’m still blown away by the generosity and feel so lucky to be a part of this family. Thank you Mel and Mary for a perfect shower!!!
After the gifts were opened and the pig cookies eaten, it was officially time to start the hog roast.
Friends started showing up and I was so excited to finally meet this little guy. Graham was a champ, sticking it out in the heat and the crazy Kansas wind…and he looked so cute doing it 🙂
Apparently we didn’t scare these two off last year! It was so good to have them back again for round 2…
Braving the heat.
I always love some good Whit time 🙂
While I was wandering around taking pictures, Chris and Taylor were busy serving up this guy. Sorry Porky, you were awfully cute…
After a delicious meal, the party continued…
Poor Dr. Niederee had to go out on a vet call right when the party started, but he came back in style…and Taylor didn’t want him to be the only one sporting boots and high socks 🙂
One of my favorite parts of the day was the dance party that began late that night…
Taylor, were you a classy cat?
My fave. Somewhat resembles the Bernie…
By 1am or so, it was pretty obvious that there was going to be some cleanup necessary the next morning…
So after my second official Fat Hog 500, I’m starting to understand what Chris has been raving about all these years. I know I’ll never want to celebrate Memorial Day weekend anywhere else!
Until next time GB…
This piglet needs to head home and get something in her stomach other than bugs and peanut shells.
…And I need to find a spot in the nursery closet for these beauties 🙂