Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer Vacation 2011

If this was a vacation then it was a vacation to hell.

As it is obvious that no one, including myself, wants to hear about how awful it was and how emotional and drama filled, I thought it best to just point out some of the highlights.

After working a full day and then driving over-night (see, the highlights, just like I said) I heard the most wonderful sound in the entire world...

and then I kissed the most wonderful toe-headed boy ever.
about a million times...
ok, ya got me...two million times.

It was as if I hadn't even been gone. I swear this is the last time I go that long without him.

Later that night there was a torrential storm. It was nice to sit with my two favorite cousins and my brother on the porch and watch and listen to it. Never mind that I had been up nearly 72 hours and could have been rambling about how TOTALLY AWESOME cheddar cheese is. This may have actually happened. I also think I claimed to be related to The Little Mermaid.

Now fast forward through the entire rest of the trip to Little Rock. Arkansas. I decided that due to the massive suckiness of the trip Little O and I deserved at least one fun day.
We left Indiana in the dead of night during an incredible lightening storm. Little O slept all the way across the great Mississippi.

We stopped just inside Arkansas at a rest stop to play "mommy go get da ball/I frowed it" and "look a big truck!".

All throughout the trip there were multiple slide opportunities...
non of which O enjoyed...

I grabbed some brochures about Little Rock and we hit the road again.
Singing Veggie Tales song for the millionth time.

We started our afternoon in Little Rock riding the trolley.

We waited and waited and played "super hewos"!

It was really neat and cost only a dollar for me and free for O!

"Here is comes Oliver"
"Hewe is comes Mommy"

"There it is Mommy! There is the Choo-Choo Twain!"
"Wets go for a wide mommy. okay? yeah. okay."

Little O was the highlight of the entire ride and entertained everyone with his squeals of delight every time the trolley would start up.

"all weady to go"

"ooooooh! Hewe we go! Hewe comes a big one!"

"You hear dat mommy? Is da engine!"

"hahahahaha! fwunny"

"ooh man...we stuck"
(meaning we stopped at a stoplight)

He was ever so clam as we crossed the river...

Little O's classic hand position whenever sitting and observing anything...

Little Rock is a very cool city and am actually considering just pursuing the job market there...
just a heads up.

Here is my Monster pouting because I made him get off the "hug-a-hug-a-choo-choo"...

The trolley let us off at the River Market
Inside the gourmet market (where I could've lived forever and ever) I grabbed a baguette, shaved chicken, grapes, and brie cheese.
We took our loot and headed down to "see da BIG WRIVER".
It was really neat as it was all decked out for 4th of July.
I didn't get any pictures because I was without a stroller and just couldn't manage the Nikon and all that spending a day outside with a 2.5 yo monster entails.
Also, let's mention that it was 9 billion degrees and I still wasn't even close to feeling tip top.

We sat in the big amphitheater on the river and watched as they decorated that Arkansas Queen Riverboat for festivities.
I plan on making a weekend trip back up here and taking Little O out on the Riverboat.

It was then, as sweat is dripping down my bacl, great visual, I know. You're welcome, that I noticed out of the corner of my eye, the coolest splash pad ever.
Being the supermom that i am I just so happened to have a "lil swimmer" in the backpack.
For those of you in the world without kiddos and have no idea what in the world a lil swimmer is go google it. I am too tired to explain that.
It has a spray fountain, slide, tunnels, and stones for climbing. So freaking cool. literally.
My Monster, not being shy at all, dove right in and immediately began splashing and playing with all the other kids.
Thank goodness I decided against the pale yellow sundress I had planned on wearing or someone wold be bailing me out of jail for public indecency.
I last about 5 minutes before Little O dragged me in saying "you go to the this way".
It actually felt really amazing and i really don't care that I was the only adult in the pool and not reading a very important newspaper on the benches safetly out of the danger zone.
I had a blast.

Little O was nearing the disaster stage of I-need-a-nap-NOW- but don't-want-to-so- I'll-just hit-every one so I pulled him out (ie major breakdown).

By the time we got back to the car I was completely dry (thank you Southern heat) and Little O was dry excepting the swimmer which was now sagging to his ankles.
A quick clothes change, a juice box, and one round of Veggie Tales later he was out before we even hit the highway.
About an hour later I saw a sign for Dinosaur Putt-Putt.
"Can you say Monster heaven?"
I risked a melt down waking him up but went for it anyway.

This is how it went:

1) Mommy explains the ball/hole/golf club relationship.
2) Mommy demonstrated miserably
3) Little O spends holes 1-3 petting each stone dinosaur.
4) Holes 4-9 are spent actually attempting to hit the ball.
5) Holes 10-12 he simplified it to just picking up the ball, dumping it into the hole, and saying good job Oldiber!
6) Holes 12-18 Mommy just played and Oliver hit a small child for not being nice to the dinosaur

I cannot describe to you enough how much I needed that afternoon alone with my Monster.
I am a very outgoing and bubbly person but I am also incredibly private.
An oxymoron, I know but sometimes it feels that, in order to always give and give, one needs some down time.
Even as a child I cherished being alone just as much as I loved being the star of the show.
Little O is the only person in the entire world that I can be with and still feel alone.
I love it.

So let's do some Top 5's...
Top 5 Things I DON'T Miss about the Midwest:

1. Clover leafs. I got discombobulated at least 15 times and then had to turn around. When I moved to Texas I hated the feeder system. Now I can't figure out the cloverleaf.

2. Mosquitoes. What the hell man! We may have flying cockroaches that are, indeed, a tad creepy, but at least we don't have a million blood hungry little insects.

3. The used car dealer/antique dealer/motel combo that all looks trashy and may involve a mullet and a toothless Grandma.

4. Sticky. Who chooses to live in a place where you stick to absolutely everything..even at 4am?

5. The terrain. No offense you lovely mid-westerners but you go not much to look at. pretty boring. corn. flat. corn. more flat. soybeans. end of story.
Top 5 Thing I Miss about the Midwest:

1. Storms. Gosh darn-it I miss a wicked thunderstorm.

2. Upland Brewery. Oh Upland and Bloomington...how I miss you.

3. H&M. Dear H&M CEO, build one in driving distance of me and I will single handedly keep you in business.

4. My Brother. Granted he can, in face, leave the Midwest but for now he is there and that is just not cool.

5. Zip and Sip. I love diet cherry coke with crushed ice. Can someone ship them to me?

Top 5 Moments of this so called "vacation":

1. Little O telling the EMS Tech to "go to your room" when they were walking me to the ambulance.

2. Those first 3 hours headed home from Indiana in the dark, rainless lightening storm.

3. Strapping Little O into his car seat after lunch and a game of "kick-a-da-ball" he points to the drivers seat and says "you sit down der mommy. go-go"
4. In the hotel after a wonderful day in Little Rock Arkansas, 4am, Little O lifts his arms, touches my hair, sighs, and rolls closer. I melted and replied, "mommy is here".

5. Learning that 3 Forks Ranch really is where my heart is.

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