we just got back from our second summer *vacation* on friday. and it's only the second week of june. never mind that we are not going anywhere else the rest of the summer.
oh, and to get some much needed sympathy/attention/praise/admiration, let me just mention that this was the second vacation that it was big h, the goo, and me.
read that again.
i did NOT mention buz. hence, the reason i put an asterisk by the word vacation. because i'm not really sure it can be classified as a vacation when i travel 5 1/2-6 hours in the car by myself with 2 children under the age of 4 and spend 2 nights and 3 full days without my husband.
now, to all you gals out there with either husbands who travel regularly or have more than 2 children, i tip my hat to you. way to go. you have my respect. i'm just sayin' i am one tired mama.
this time, we traveled south to visit one of my best buddies, marino. no, that's not her real name.
marino and i met 12 years ago working at a summer kamp. we worked in the kitchen serving food and cleaning the kitchen after mealtimes. now, if you ever met marino, you would keel over laughing at the thought of this. let's just say marino is not quite the gal you would expect to carry a big bucket of slop (leftover food) to the trash room and dump it out, while wearing a beauty of a canvas apron. in 106 degree heat. with no makeup. just not that girl. not that i know who that girl is. but marino, she is not.
sometimes there would be a conversation going on and then joke telling would begin. you know how you get started with "one time, i was doing _____," and another person will say, "oh yeah, well i _______." and marino was that person who would finish, "oh well, one time i _______." and then you'd hear the sound of the broken record. and everyone would look at her. and she would look at me and say, "i took it too far, huh?" and that actually gave me more laughs than the original joke ever did.
somehow after knowing me for a month in the hottest time of the year, she decided she wanted to stay friends. insanity due to humidity, i guess. because let's remember, people. i am NOT A SUMMER PERSON. and i sweat like a junior on the high school football team during 2-a-days.
somehow we have stayed friends. i moved here when she and her now husband were living here. they were my only friends when i first got here.
you think i'm kidding.
and i had no trouble being the awkward third wheel girl. because i needed friends, people.
somehow i started calling her husband chris, c-dawg. no idea why or when. but he answered to it, so we were cool. however, he and marino began calling me "big jan." not sure how that came about, but i'm cool with nicknames, you know. and so big jan stuck.
chris and marino were around when buz and i started "hanging out." chris was there for all the times i had ask really important questions. (these are typically questions my brother would answer, but because he lived in another state, i needed answers NOW.)
ok, chris, buz just fixed me dinner at his house last night and had rented one of my favorite movies and had cold dr. pepper in the refrigerator. does he like me?
ok, chris, buz just asked me to come have dinner with his mom, who is in town for the weekend. what outfit says, "hi. i really, really like your son and really, really want to date him?"
ok, chris, if he took me to a movie and paid, does that mean it was a real date?
ok, chris, what happens if he walks me up to my door after the (backstreet boys) concert? and what if it's awkward?
you know...the important stuff.
anyway, i LOVED chris and loved him for marino. they were/are perfect together. so perfect that i got to stand next to her in their wedding seven years ago next week.
and she stood next to me 11 months later.
suffice to say we're pretty good friends. such good friends, in fact, that she's only seen big h once, never met the goo, and had a 2-year-old daughter that i had never met.
so we decided to remedy that. we really tried to get together in april. you know, before SUMMER hit. but apparently, we are too busy. (i say we to make myself sound cool. we, our family, are not busy.)
we played, ate, slept, and did more eating, sleeping, and playing.
and ironically enough, for those of you in blogville (or whatever you call it), she just happens to have a sister. now i knew her sister, you know, because we were in the same wedding and all. but that was the extent of our little relationship.
so i was fortunate to get to introduce her to big h and the goo and i was able to finally meet caroline. (somehow i forgot my camera. only big mama holds the key to such a blackmailable piece of goodness.)
and in true big h fashion, we, meaning he, left in tears. nice.
don't think big h didn't like miss caroline. oh he did. it just happened to be that miss caroline had too many cool toys. all of which big h wanted to play with, at the exact same time caroline was playing with them. it is so rough being 3 1/2, you guys.
but they exchanged email addresses and promised to be lifelong pals. big mama, SUPER FUN hanging out with you.
the goo was her usual high maintenance self.
marino, i cannot tell you how much fun i had laughing, crying, and being mommies with you. your sweet SG is so lucky that you're her mama.
(don't you want to just eat her up?)
and big h is still talking about his friend "kiss" who called him jelly face/squared cracker head.
amazingly enough, we didn't leave marino's house in tears. but we weren't finished with our "friends from the past" tour of 2007.
we got to go see one of my best buddies from college. (the same "i was in her wedding, she was in my wedding" story.) she was going to be pretty busy the 3 days i was there. so we decided to see her and her 2 DAUGHTERS on the way out of town. these were the 3rd and 4th girls big h met in a 2-day time span. oh, and he met all of these girls on their turf, i mean house, i might add. so things went well until being there 5 minutes too long. and he decided to peg my friend's 19-month-old daughter in the head with a plastic doctor kit. attaboy, big h. he and i had a pretty stern discussion about his behavior (in private, of course), and he got an ever so loving, gentle pat on this hiney.
and we left in tears. again.
and mama just had to push the envelope, didn't she? i was so physically and emotionally tired from the 2 weeks of togetherness with my children that i knew that the only thing that would really make me feel better and all warm and fuzzy was a purse, of course. a really nice handbag.
so i stopped at a really great outlet about an hour outside of marino's house that had some really great handbag stores. never mind it was 154 degrees outside with a humidity level of 110 percent and both of my children were asleep in the backseat. nope, i had to get me a purse. so we stopped.
i couldn't do it. i went in 2 of the 3 stores and there were too many people to get (my double wide stroller) around. so i wasn't able to feel them all and "try them on" and the other important parts of the handbag purchase process. so i got my kids back in the car, realizing the goo was hungry. so i thought we would just run right in to a fast food restaurant and get some piping hot water for her bottle (she likes it like coffee, thanks to uncle bob and aunt emily). so because i'm smart, i brought the double stroller along for this trip.
at this particular restaurant, i had to stand in line for my hot water. i was ok with that. except that it took SIXTEEN minutes to get it ready for me. you think i'm exaggerating the sixteen minutes part. except, i'm not.
i finally feed her and get ready to use the restroom and change diapers.
except that my double wide stroller wouldn't fit through the bathroom door. ok. deep breath. oh, and did i mention that it was 154 degrees? so after a HUGE prayer, i asked this cute little engaged couple if they would watch the stroller (with the kids in it, mind you) while i used the restroom really quickly. and only by God's grace, both children were still there when i came back. thank you, Jesus. and thank you, cute engaged couple. i hope i'm there to repay the favor when you have a child.
fairly uneventful trip until we started creeping back into the metroplex. creeping. because i just had to stop and look at handbags, we arrived into the southern part of the metroplex at about 4:20 pm.
on a friday afternoon.
and we live in the northern part of the metroplex. let's just say it was 5:50 pm when we arrived in the driveway. i don't think i have ever seen big h so happy to see buz. the goo was even excited.
i hugged buz and kissed him. and grabbed my purse. i had to be alone.
in other news:
tomorrow, we start swim 2007. last year, out of the 10 straight week days that we were scheduled to "learn to swim," i believe big h got in the water 6 of them. and mostly sat on the side of the pool eating teddy grahams and squirting water out of someone's bath toy from home. oh, and it was 2 weeks before the goo was born. so i was a vision of loveliness in my motherhood maternity tankini. so we'll see how this goes. i forgot to mention -- he still has to wear his ear plugs this summer. that was one of the reasons he didn't get in the water last year. oh, dear Jesus. have mercy on me.
and....buz and i are going on a childless vacation next tuesday. to denver. anyone know anything fun to do in denver? buz is going to be at a conference during the day. i just know i am going to be so miserable with nothing to do. (insert giggling.)
that about wraps it up.