The Sisterhood

Just a little over two years ago, I became part of a group of expectant quad moms who connected online.  In a situation that could be otherwise isolating, we found ourselves sharing our experiences weathering quadruplet pregnancies.  We encouraged each other and commensurated.  After the babies were born, we maintained close contact, celebrating the small victories and sharing the challenges of raising quadruplets. Since there is no book about parenting quadruplets this group has become the go-to resource.   About a year ago we began toying with the notion of taking a girls weekend trip to finally meet in person and to relax.  At first it seemed like an unlikely scenario.  After all, we don’t exactly live in the same neighborhood.  Literally states and thousands of miles separate us. 

Several months ago, Amber B. took the reigns as travel agent and coordinated our very first girls getaway weekend.   She scored a condo in Gruene, TX, which is nestled down in the beautiful Texas Hill Country.  In the months leading up to our trip, we communicated almost daily (sometimes several times a day).  It wasn’t solely about the trip, but was more about sharing our daily lives, which made each of us feel “normal”.  As each day passed leading up to the trip, our sisterhood grew stronger.  I felt like a child anticipating Christmas morning as the trip grew nearer.  Since this trip would mark my first time away from both the quads and George, I wasn’t sure what feelings it might bring.    My thoughtful child decided to throw some whopper tantrums earlier in the day, which helped stave off any mommy guilt associated with my departure.

Once my bags were packed, they were waiting by the front door.

 

 

My sweet Rylin wanted to ensure I would have zero mommy guilt for leaving, and threw whopper tantrums all day before I departed,

 

As soon as all husbands were firmly posted at their respective homes, the journey began.  Amber B., Griselda, and I carpooled from Dallas.  Meanwhile, Krista caught a flight from California and Becky from Michigan. Ashley headed from Houston to Austin to pick up our flying sisters from the airport.  To our surprise, all six of us arrived at the condo within five minutes of each other!

Road trip!

Road trip!

 

The moment when all six of us united in person for the first time, can only be described as surreal.  It played out like a movie scene full of heartfelt embraces, shrieks, and laughter.  Although we’ve shared some of the most intimate aspects of our lives, meeting in person was all new.   Even away from home, Amber B. was an expert at hospitality.  After everyone was settled, she presented each person with a goody bag consisting of some of her favorite R & R  items  (e.g. Moroccan body lotion, Texas Trash trail mix, stationary, bath soak, body spray, peach tea, and facial masks) as well as hand crafted cookies from a mother of triplets.

In utter excitement, we chattered away until the wee hours of the morning.  Despite only clocking a few hours of sleep for the night, we awoke refreshed the next morning as we sipped hot coffee together.  It’s amazing what uninterrupted sleep without any responsibilities can do for a person.

 

United at last!

United at last! Back Row: Me, Krista, Becky, Griselda Front Row: Amber B. & Ashley

 

 

 

These cookies were so beautiful, I refused to gobble them up too fast and brought several home.  George was impressed.

If you are dying to sink your teeth into some of Mary’s gorgeous cookies, please visit Sugar Coma Cookies to order your very own.  She can ship to you!

In order to give our out of state visitors a taste of Texas, we headed to Saltgrass Steakhouse for lunch situated along the Guadalupe River.   The spring weather was as stunning as our table side view.  Much to our dismay, Griselda started feeling bad shortly after lunch.  Although we begged her to stay and recover in the condo, Griselda opted to go back home.  We missed having her for the remainder of the weekend, but we genuinely appreciated her commitment to keeping the rest of our group from experiencing quad mom contagion.  Between the six of us, there are 29 children whom we hope to keep well. 

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Amber Squared

 

After lunch, we meandered through Gruene and became accustomed to taking “selfies” of the group.  When we saw a beautiful view of the river, decided it was time to trouble another tourist to take a group shot.    Up to this point, we kept our identities as quad moms a secret.  It was all too nice not having to field questions or remarks.   For some reason, Krista felt compelled to reveal our little secret to the kind woman who snapped our photo.  Instead of asking questions or making crass remarks, the woman stood quietly as she pulled an odd expression.  It was as if something had gone terribly wrong.  To our surprise, the woman casually revealed that she was a surviving quadruplet!  I’m not sure who was more surprised at our unusual connection, the quad moms or the quadruplet herself.  She graciously allowed us to take a picture with her to commemorate the moment.   As the evening came to a close, our stroll through Gruene landed us at a serene wine bar, which served as the ideal spot for relaxation and more girl talk.

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Our second day consisted primarily of pool time followed by a group dinner at the famous Grist Mill.   Everyone found something they felt confident wearing at the pool, but Krista and Amber B. rocked bikinis!  While at the pool, Becky demonstrated acrobatics from her former life as a competitive gymnast.  This little quad mama can still do the splits!

 

poolside

quad mamas rocking bathing suits

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As we took turns showering and getting ready to pain the town, we found quiet moments to relax and actually read magazines!  My magazine stockpile usually becomes a fine motor activity for the quads and I never get a chance to skim them.  It was a nice change of pace to say the least.

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Ready to paint the town

The power of Four!

The power of Four!

Gristmill

Gristmill

Gristmill

Gristmill

Joy filled hearts!

Joy filled hearts!

 

A girl’s getaway is never complete without a spa visit.  Though we weren’t willing to sacrifice a day of togetherness, we still managed a spa experience, DIY style.  Krista, Becky and I used parts of our goody bags to create a foot soak and cucumber facial, which went awry when the mask didn’t peel as anticipated.  It may not have been the relaxing “spa experience” of our dreams, but resulted in laughter and memories to last forever.

What have I gotten Krista into?

When we realized the masks wouldn’t peel off easily, Krista leaned over asking, “What have you gotten us into???” as if I offered them illicit drugs or something.

Looks like Becky has a skin condition.

It took the better part of 20 minutes to peel the masks from our faces, but it was all in good fun.

 

 

As the weekend came to a close, the emotions were bittersweet.  It was undeniably  hard to leave such dear friends to return to our normal lives.  Yet, I was more than ready to return to my family back home.  On Sunday afternoon, I returned refreshed and rejuvenated.  I’m not sure George had the same sentiment after a weekend of holding down the fort.  He’ll be sharing his weekend stories soon…stay tuned!

 

hugs!

 

Amber

 

P.S.  This trip was such a success, we have grand plans of making it an annual thing.  Don’t tell George though, I’m not sure he’ll agree to staying behind again.  I am encouraging him to take a camping trip in the near future.  He deserves time to recharge too!

15 thoughts on “The Sisterhood

  1. Awwww how fun!!! What an awesome idea, and how cool that you were able to actually make this happen! Good for you guys, I’m sure it was wonderful, sounds like you had a blast!!

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  2. I could have sworn I commented on this post however It didnt show up. Hummm. I must have got side tract and didnt hit send. Anyway, all of you ladies look fabulous and I am very proud of all of you. My goodness Amber Shawver, I didnt know you could jump so far off the ground. I am very happy that you all came together and had your little get away. Thats so awesome. Yes, Amber S. please send George on a camping trip so that next year it will all work out for you. LOL. Way to go ladies. Like I said you all look so amazing. Glad to know you had a wonderful time. God Bless all of you.

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  3. The sisterhood of the traveling Quads?! Lol
    How wonderful that you guys met in real life!!! Looks like you had an amazing weekend 🙂

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  4. How awesome that y’all finally got to get together and spend some time to relax! It’s amazing what a short get away can do for a frazzled mama. A couple close friends, my sister and I have also started the same thing. Last year we planned a relaxing trip to the beach in Florida. It was so wonderful that we decided it needed to be an annual thing, so we’ve already got our trip booked for this year. I absolutely can’t wait!! Y’all definitely need to make it an annual thing too! Thanks for sharing your amazing weekend.

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    • A girls getaway is so good for the soul! I’m glad you get an opportunity to get away too.

      Ps- I’ve written several pieces for Twiniversity thanks to you! 🙂

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