Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Go West

2 weeks ago, I was chatting with m'Mama about our upcoming visit to GP. A little girl that I used to babysit is all grown up, she's now a DENTIST, and was having a wedding reception at her parents' farm after getting married in Italy this summer. (Yes, that makes me officially old. I used to babysit a dentist. Sigh.)

Things took a turn for the worst at about this point:

Me: Well, we'll see you in a week from today!
Mom: You mean less than a week.
Me: No, today's Friday. We'll be in sometime on Friday night.
Mom: The wedding is on Friday.
Me: WHAT?!?
Mom: Yeah, August 6th. Friday. You'll have to come Thursday.
Me: Crap.

You see, my darling husband is a busy accountant at a company that has a July 31 year-end. That means his busiest time is the couple of weeks immediately after July 31, which means there was no way he could take a day off work in the first week of August. So I braced myself for a solo trip out to Grammie and Grampy's with my small fries.

Since I was taking the kids by myself, and I'm a lady of leisure who doesn't work and all that, I thought we would go a little bit early and have a visit with Grammie & Grampy. We left Wednesday afternoon at naptime. Since it's a 4 hour trip, and the babes typically sleep for 3 hours anyway, it all worked out. I usually like to stop halfway to GP but with 2 still sleeping kids in the back of the van, I pushed through. Talia woke up around Ste. Rose and Declan woke up around Dauphin. We rolled into town just in time for supper and I was able to get the kids to bed around their regular bedtime, although Declan had a hard night.

I thought Talia would be really missing her Daddy, but the first night all she asked was "Where Nernie? Where Puppy?" (We left the boys home with Daddy - Grammie & Grampy don't have a fenced in yard, and Ernie likes to chase cars, so the dogs are a real PITA when we go to GP.)

On Thursday morning we were up at the crack of dawn. The babes usually sleep through anything, but we were downstairs and it sounded like a pack of elephants was trampling the house above us as soon as G & G got up, so we all got up. We spent Thursday playing with the kids from Grammie's daycare. My healthy little Talia, who makes her own daycare provider pull her hair out because she refuses to eat things the other kids typically love (chicken nuggets, hot dogs, etc.) succumbed to peer pressure and ate a chicken finger for the very first time. Well, part of one. Thanks, Grammie. (And she still didn't like it, and still won't be served them at home, so let's hope she's not any closer to acquiring a taste for them, mmmmmmmmkay?) After supper G & G wanted to take Talia for an ice cream, then turned her loose in the sandbox. After a nice bath, she went to bed early, played out from her big day.

Declan, on the other hand, was a terrible sleeper at G & G's house. He hates the playpen. HATES IT. Oridinarily he's the type of baby that needs to be swaddled, given a soother, and left to his own devices to fall asleep - just like Talia at this age, he hates to be rocked, cuddled, etc. When he's tired, he wants you to PUT HIM DOWN and LEAVE HIM ALONE. In fact, he will scream these directions at you until you figure out what he's saying and do it. Except, apparently, in GP. He was too much of a princess for the playpen, too much of a princess for the cold basement, too much of a princess for the warm upstairs...... sigh. Every nap & bedtime was a big fight, he was a lousy sleeper the entire time. At home he usually sleeps 3 hours in the morning, 3 hours in the afternoon, and 11 hours at night, so I was NOT used to the fussy little guy that showed up in GP, that's for sure.

By Friday I was pretty tired after Sir Declan's refusal to sleep for the past couple of days. I was nervous about what that would mean for the wedding, because if he was miserable, we would just come home - which would mean my big solo trip to GP was for NOTHING. Nevertheless, on Friday afternoon we all put on our finest summer attire, put the potty in the back of the van, and headed out to the farm.

We had a great time. I don't go back to GP very often, and when I do it's for such a quick visit that I rarely even have time to see a few friends, never mind going to big events and seeing lots of people. So it was really nice to see so many familiar faces. Out of the 500ish people there, it seemed like I knew about 475. When we first arrived, Talia strutted her way through the crowd like she owned the place, and it was fun to watch people's reactions to her. When people saw my little mini-me, some actually gasped out loud and looked like they'd just seen a ghost - they thought they had lost their minds and gone back in time 30 years to when I was 2. It was crazy that people instantly knew she had to be mine, before they saw or recognized me. Once word got out that I was there with the kids, I barely saw Declan for the rest of the night. He was whisked away by a woman I used to babysit for, and passed around the crowd. Someone brought him back for his supper, then someone else took him again. I spent my time chasing Talia around the farm, running her back & forth to the potty in the van, and catching up with people - some I hadn't seen since our wedding, some I hadn't seen since leaving town 14 years ago.

We stayed long enough to see the first dance (Talia tried to get up on the deck to join the bride & groom) and have a good visit, and were back at G & G's by about 10pm. Talia was all wound up and didn't go to sleep until almost 11. Declan, again, was a lousy sleeper and I was up with him most of the night.

On Saturday, I got us mostly packed up while Talia slept in until 11am. We had a nice BBQ lunch and then hit the road at naptime. Thank God Declan finally slept! He slept until we were about 15km from the perimeter, then woke up screaming so I had to pull over and feed him. Talia only slept about 2.5 hours but is so good in the car, just played with her teddy bear, looked at books, etc.

When we finally got home, Talia walked in the house and said "Yay! Daddy home!!!" which is pretty hilarious, since she was the one that was away. But he knew what she meant.

All in all, it was a good trip. I'm glad we were there to see Ashley get married, and it was great to see so many people from home. And now that Declan is finally settling back into his good sleeping routine (11 hours last night! Woo hoo!) and I'm actually recovering from this whirlwind visit, I'm ready to say we'll be back again.


Amanda said...

Brave woman! I have not attempted to drive to GP myself, nor do I think I ever will. My kids do not sleep in the car well, no matter what time we try to drive. Maybe 45 minutes to an hour of sleep - that's it.

You are your uber healthy eating habits. Do you make your own chicken fingers? I make mine with whole wheat breadcrumbs and spices and my family loves them.

T Mc Q said...

I do make homemade chicken fingers/nuggets sometimes. I sneak wheat germ and ground flax seed in with the crumbs, and I usually make them with homemade (baked) fries. Talia likes those, but she still won't touch the junky ones. I'm actually really glad, and it's my choice to make these homemade things, but jeez. Sometimes it would just be nice to shake something out of a bag, you know? lol