Thursday, March 29, 2012

Rollercoaster Trip

No, we didn't go to an amusement park. I'm talking about our recent trip to SLC.

It was kind of a strange trip because it was really nice moments all mixed up with really stressful ones. A lot of the stress came from the fact that Ethan had been sick ornery, Terral was still very sick, and we were all sleep deprived. Normally, when we get ready for a trip Terral and I just kind of naturally divide the prep work, but since he was out of commission, it fell on my shoulders. What with one thing and another, we were already leaving later than I'd hoped, and then Terral couldn't find his wallet. After searching for about 15-20 minutes, we gave up and decided to just leave. This meant I had to drive the whole way, which also meant I couldn't work on the crochet project I brought along. Terral usually does the driving when we're together, but because he was sick I expected to drive most or all of the way up, but hoped he could drive back. He was planning on taking turns because of the broken driver's seat. Yeah, that's another thing I haven't mentioned yet. The driver's seat in our car recently broke and now assumes only the reclining position. We tried bolstering my back with pillows, but that didn't work out too great. I tried to sit up straight some of the time, but because of the way the car is built my head touches the ceiling and my line of sight is reduced.

Whoa. Sorry about that little rant. Just so you know, Terral temporarily fixed it by shoving Ethan's hiking backpack that was in the trunk behind the seat so the back is in a semi-normal position. The drive home was consequently a lot easier on my back.

Now for the good stuff.

We spent the night at my sister Sarah's house, and Ethan had fun playing with his cousin H. Sometimes Ethan reminds us of H, so it was fun for me to see them interact.

Here's Ethan wearing H's sunglasses. He thought they were pretty cool since they actually fit his head.

And here he is squeezing H's cat. They both are big stuffed animal fans.
 All three cousins drawing. Ethan kept trying to use crayons on the chalkboard.

And then we spent quite a bit of time outside. The boys had tons of fun with these cars.
 H posed for me on the slide. I was surprised that Ethan didn't seem too interested in it. Apparently things with wheels eclipse slides.
 Yeah, this kind of stuff. I pulled them around a long time. H deigned to sing a few Primary songs with me, which made it a little more fun from my perspective. :)

Later, Sarah and Kyle fed us a very yummy Cafe Rio style dinner, and then it was time for us to go on our date. (Which was really just a way for me to earn re-certification points for my teaching license turned into something better.) I was nervous about finding a place to park, and my back was still sore from the long drive, so when Sarah suggested we take Trax, we decided to go for it. It sounded like a good way to avoid more stress.  Until we got there and the ticket machine would not work. We tried it for about 20 minutes until a line started piling up behind us. Then we traipsed around to the other side and got our tickets without further incident.

Riding the trax was kind of fun because it reminded me a lot of my mission. We talked about the different kinds of transportation we rode in Russia, and the many interesting people too. We saw some of those on this trip too. :)

Our stop was right in front of the concert hall which was really nice. We got to meet one of the violin players on our way in. She was an older lady with a leopard print capelet, and she was really nice.

The next day, I went to church with my friends Erika and Brennen, while Terral stayed at the house with Ethan to get some more rest. He felt pretty awful. Thankfully, that afternoon was the turning point and he's been recovering since. I picked up Terral and Ethan after church, and we had lunch with our friends and a good time visiting. Erika lent me the Fablehaven series to read, and I'm currently on book 3. Good stuff.

After a few hours there, we left so we could spend the rest of the afternoon at my sister Rachel's house to celebrate her birthday. We had a really good time there too. It's been quite a long time since I've been with Rachel on her birthday, and it's been a long time since she had a party, too. She usually just wants to spent the day quietly with her family, but decided to have a little gathering since we were going to be up there. I was so glad she did! We had fun seeing some of my siblings and their families. The only blemish on the evening was that as I was showing Ethan his cousins hamster, he stuck his finger in the cage and got his first animal bite. Poor little guy screamed and I pulled him close to comfort him. I didn't notice the blood at first because of the way I was holding him. He bled quite a lot out of that little finger before we got him all fixed up. After the first hour or so, he did really well and it has healed up quite nicely.

We left later than we were intending from my sister's house, but it wasn't terribly late when we got home. Aside from my tiredness, the drive was actually rather nice. Ethan slept most of the way, with only a couple wakings. The seat situation was greatly improved. And Terral and I had a really good conversation about things other than Ethan, the business, health choices, or immediate plans for the future. I hadn't realized how long it had been since we had a conversation like that. It felt really good to reconnect on a deeper level.

So there you have it. A good amount of highs, some lows, and some in-betweens.

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