Favorite place to visit while I’m home? Always Max’s! I don’t know how it came to be but a few years ago, Max’s Place settled into a little space in downtown Bloomington (minutes from my parents home).

My Dad started going there all the time — and it became the local hangout for he and many of his buddies. He is friends with the owners and everyone likes to say he “keeps the lights on” because he goes so much!

Soon, his love of the place grew on the rest of us. They have phenomenal pizza that I constantly crave here in DC and I seriously never care to visit any other restaurant while I’m home as long as I get at least one trip to Max’s. This time was no different and we made it a family affair — and if you don’t know what the title of my blog post refers too, you should probably go ahead and listen to this.

L to R: Mom, Giovanna, Shelby, Me, Lindsey, Glenn, Dad, Marshall

This was my second trip there this time around and we went for lunch on Labor Day so we had the place to ourselves and decided to utilize the stage for our own photo op.

We also met my extended family of aunts, uncles and grandparents there. I’m so lucky that I have an amazing, large, extended family. I know a lot of people don’t have that and I’m incredibly thankful I do.

L to R: Grandma, Andrea, Cheryl, Grandpa, Angie, Chloe, Dad

And we got a little silly too: 

Those were of my Mom, my sisters and I. Of course the only thing that was missing from my fun weekend in Indiana was Rick! It’s hard living far away from your family because 10 hour drives are no fun and 2 plane tickets can cost $700! So, he stayed in DC while I visited but hopefully next trip, he will be there!

I was also able to visit with my friend, Megan, who came over one night with her three kids. We’ve been friends since were 16 so its hard to believe she is a mommy of three now but when we are together, sometimes it seems like no time has gone by at all:

Marshall, Me, Megan

Just loved meeting my nephew for the first time and seeing how much G has grown — she’s such a little girl now it’s hard to believe. Thanks for giving me this post to gush about the fam — I suppose we should all take time to do that once in awhile, huh? A bit I capture on video:

For now, we say farewell: 


Thanks to everyone who helped with the Tough Mudder fundraiser for the Congo kids at CCC. We have now surpassed our goal and all 58 of the kids will be able to attend school this year. It’s no small feat to raise $7,500 in such a short period of time. I’m touched that so many reached out to give.

Next Saturday, our team will run the Tough Mudder, proudly donning our team t-shirts dedicated to the kids:

*If you are new to The Sweet Life, I hope you will take a look at my section dedicated to the Congo HERE.
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