Friday, August 12, 2011

Part 3 of Road Trip Extravaganza

Before I continue on with our little road trip recaps, I would like to take a moment to recognize some very important van-members that we could not have made the trip without:

Emma the GPS. Your contributions have been invaluable, even when you got us a little turned around on the country roads in western Kansas and Oklahoma. We forgive you. The roads over there all looked the same to us too.

Backseat laundry basket full of food. Groceries, you have saved us quite a bit of change on this road trip. We will never again leave for six days without our adequate supply of bread, peanut butter, snack crackers, granola bars, chips, Craisins, applesauce, fruit snacks, water jugs, and a 12 pack of diet coke with splenda. Honorable mention goes to the roll of paper towels and stash of empty trash sacks.

Stocked cooler. Who goes on a road trip without a gallon jug of milk? Not this family. We kept her stocked with the milk, flavored coffee creamer (I am a bit of a high maintenance coffee drinker), Capri suns, fruit, yogurts, hot dogs, jelly, and (at one point) leftover pizza from dinner Monday night in Oklahoma City. We loved having options for hungry kids on the road, without having to stop for chicken nuggets constantly.

DVD player. Self explainitory. It would have been even more invaluable had we remembered to bring any of our DVDs from home, instead of relying on a $5 Smurfs movie that we picked up from WalMart.

Moving on.

We pulled into Brandon’s grandparents’ house in Wichita at about 4pm on Saturday, and spent some time catching up with them and chasing their terrified kitty around the house before heading out for some dinner. Emerson never fails to impress us with her ability to clean her plate, regardless of what she is eating. Saturday night she ate her entire bowl of pasta, several breadsticks dipped in my spaghetti sauce, what was left of MaMaw’s pasta dish, and polished it off with a scoop of blue ice cream from Braum’s.

We had a chance to catch up a little with Brandon’s uncle and his family at the Braum’s. My children have good days and bad days, and to say the least, the trip to Braum’s was not their finest hour. In the hour and a half that we were there, Emerson’s nose started spontaneously bleeding, requiring a 10 minute trip to the bathroom with mommy. Then my sweet girl saw a “little person” (is that the p.c. term for it? Is it rude to put that in quotes?) I guess I shouldn’t worry if my quotes are rude, since Emerson went up to the little person, pointed at him, and with an awestruck expression on her sweet face, said “Wow! Look, Mommy!” I was horrified, to say the least, and kindly apologized to the nice man who just wanted ice cream that night, not an audience of preschool gawkers.

Because my children hadn’t embarrassed us in front of extended family enough for one night, Dane and Aidan engaged in a wrestling match ON THE FLOOR OF BRAUM’S when they were sent to throw trash away, then Harper licked the table where some of her ice cream had spilled. We got the kids settled, drawing on some paper napkins with pens from my purse for a little while, then I realized that Dane had been writing letters that started "Dear Poop, " and then digressed from there. I would have written if off as normal 7 year old boy stuff, until he started drawing illustrations of his subject matter.

I did not take pictures of his illustrations. There’s enough filth on the internet without looking at Dane’s poop drawings.

Sunday morning we packed up and loaded up and headed to church with Brandon’s grandparents, and then corralled everyone afterwards for a few pictures...

After a little lunch and some hugs goodbye, we headed over to visit Brandon’s Grandma Helen. I’m making this sound so simple, but the reality is that we drove around Wichita for over an hour, not sure of where Grandma Helen lived, and unable to get ahold of any family members who may know. Heaven forbid we get the address ahead of time. We felt pretty ridiculous.

Finally we made it...

And as a bonus, saw Brandon’s Uncle Charles also.

After another trip to Braum’s, we headed out for the three hour trek west to Dodge City.


Adrienne said...

Great pictures with the Kansas GPs! Can't wait to see how Dodge City was for you guys :)

Brand al Thor said...

Has anyone else noticed how amazing the kids were at taking great pictures this trip? In the past it took a miracle from God (literally) for them all to look at the camera and smile at the same time. We were able to accomplish that about 10 times this trip! Hooray!