** in which I again brag about my perfect child.
Family Vacation 2005 is officially over. Here’s the recap. We left Saturday afternoon out of the newly remodeled Helena International Airport (what? It has flights to Canada…. That’s international.) Lovely airport, we were on-time, the giant red suitcase weighed in at exactly 50 pounds, it was still above zero degrees, the Saints football game was on the radio and they were winning…. Life is good. Flying time to SLC is about an hour. Sweet Boy & Daddy colored with the color wonder markers (Ok, confession…. When I first heard of color wonder I was horrified….. won’t something that only colors the pictures stunt Sweet Boy’s creativity? I now believe color wonder ranks right up there with yogurt-covered raisins, umbrella strollers & sippy cups as the most amazing things ever invented.) I said, “Sweet Boy, can you color the deer’s nose?” and he promptly markered his own little button-nose…. But hey, it’s color wonder… no harm done!! We raced through the SLC airport…. Only 45 minutes of layover and when you are flying into Concourse E it is always a mad-dash….. Sweet Boy was in heaven…. Pointing and saying, “airplane, airplane” over and over. He wasn’t sure what to call the luggage carriers but he settled on “tractor” and he even saw some “big trucks” and a “pickup” too. True nirvana was reached when we saw a BACKHOE. He promptly fell asleep immediately after take-off. (I didn’t even drug him this trip…. I swear.)
We had a long, long shuttle trip to the hotel (take a taxi…. It costs a few bucks more but takes way less time.) We rested a few minutes and then met up with my mom & sister. They’d been there since Tuesday and swore after a few days you didn’t notice the smoke quite as much…. Yes, I’m complaining about the smokiness. Sorry, but I come from a state that just went completely smoke-free. (Ok, some places have until 2007 to comply.) I’m also going to complain a little about the prices of some things…. Overall, not too bad but there was this one $4.50 hot dog that Sweet Boy didn’t eat that’s really bugging me….. My dad & brother arrived a little later in the evening. Oh yes, the whole nerd herd was there….
We spent two days wandering around, going to Cowboy Christmas (vendor hell) and just acting like tourists. Sweet Boy loved the tram, the helicopters that fly over regularly, the lights & all the water features. We were disappointed the Treasure Island boats were out of commission and we decided not to fork over the cash to go to the Secret Garden and see the animals.
Sunday night we went to the rodeo. Amazing. Truly. I like rodeo anyway but this was an amazing event. We smuggled in a bit of Black Velvet (in the diaper bag… rather than the usual boot-top storage method preferred by my brother). Hot Stuff did an amazingly elaborate dance on the escalator (pretending) to go back down so the lady at the bottom could search his backpack… then she kinda realized he was with Sweet Boy and said, “oh, never mind” and I again realized just how devious my darling husband really is….
Taking cabs (we did it 3 times) made me sick to my stomach. No car seats. Need I say more?
On the way to the airport we bought an umbrella stroller. Best $9.96 I’ve ever spent. Sweet Boy likes to stash his sippy cup on one side of his legs and his toy on the other and away we go.
The flight home was very uneventful. It left at 6:45 am so we all napped most of the way. Being brilliant, I got cheesy-crackers for my “snack” and Sweet Boy broke them into pieces and dropped bits of fake cheese all over me…. Hot Stuff tried to help and managed to smear the cheese everywhere. Ah, motherhood. (I do remember a time when I traveled a lot for work and got on the plane wearing spiffy little outfits carrying a book, my ticket & a bottle of water….. those days, my friend, are LONG GONE.)
Sweet Boy lived up to his title and was, truly, sweet the whole time. What an amazing kid. Running on limited naps, late nights, odd eating schedules and going, going, going and he never melted down once. (Well, not totally true…. We got home Tuesday and went to lunch at Pizza Hut buffet and he cried when he was pooping his pants at the table and everyone looked at him…. Boy likes to poop in private.)