Two Saturdays ago my mom dropped us, along with the GIGANTIC pile of crap that has to be dragged along when traveling with a small child (or maybe just my small child – but keep opinions about that quiet for Keri’s sake, m’kay,) off at the airport at a semi-insanely early hour of the day.
We checked my gigantic suitcase at the counter -attention to The Mr: I am packing for TWO in that thing, OK? Most of that stuff is totally for Jr, not really I swear! Then I wheeled Jr’s carseat strapped to an old school folding luggage cart through security, on to the train and to the gate for gate-checking, and off we went to the great state of Ohio for a week of family fun with The Mr’s extended family.
In honor of this trip, I present to you:
Keri’s Fun Facts From Family Vacation!
- Southwest loaner car seats are actually really nice – as we learned when ours remained (lonely and abandoned) on the jet way in Denver while we jetted to the Buckeye state. It arrived later that day on a different flight – I hope they gave it a juice box and some pilot wings, flying alone is scary!
- Evidently, to a 4 year-old, one has not truly visited a place unless one has pooed in a potty at that place. (This includes, but is not limited to, private homes, restaurants, quaint destination Inns, and coffee shops.)
- My father-in-law’s chocolate martini recipe isn’t NEARLY as complicated as I previously imagined. (So. Damn. Good.)
- It is a good thing I took the giant suitcase *ahem, husband, as the amount of gifts bestowed upon Jr by The Mr’s generous family meant we needed the space (and my luggage gained 5 lbs.)
- Speaking of gaining 5 lbs… the Midwest has a LOT of good food. I did my best to eat it all.
- Fireflies are kinda scary looking in the full light of day.
- If you ask Jr about the Columbus Zoo, where he spent like, 5 fun filled hours looking at all the animals and frolicking in glee, he will only tell you that the animatronic pirate out front “was scary but it’s ok ‘cause he can’t move from there.” (oh, pooed at the Zoo too, BTW.)
- Deep-fried,Bacon-wrapped Deviled Eggs are an actual thing. Long live The Walrus !
- Ohio Squirrels don’t look like Colorado Squirrels – they grow ‘em lean and scrappy in the O.H.
- You can get Brutus the Buckeye on literally ANY product you could ever think of in your mind. EVER.
- O-H-I-Oh my effing gawd does humidity jack up Keri’s hair.
- Most importantly: You can pack a lot of family fun and shenanigans into one week!
I am not going to lie – travel sometimes takes me out of my comfort zone, and there were some moments that I was definitely not at my best as a mom, (there was a particularly horrifying moment involving an airport escalator that is burned into my mind with regret.)
But I hope that Jr’s memories of this trip will be of all the fun adventures he had; of chasing his big cousin Adam around bugging him to play; of his great uncle calling milk “Moo Juice” and giving him high-fives; of his GaGa and Grandpa watching him proudly display his gymnastic moves in the twilight of the front yard; of late bedtimes and sweet treats and new experiences… and most importantly, of the amazing amount of love he got to soak in from his wonderful extended family during his first trip to “where Brutus lives.”