We headed out last Thursday morning with an extensive itinerary.
My stretch goal was to be on the road by 7:00 am, putting us in Auburn around 11:00 for lunch with my friend AnnMarie and her daughter Hannah, though my drop-dead pull out time was 8:00 am. We pulled out of the driveway at 7:08, which I considered nothing short of miraculous, especially considering how much crapola I had to load into the car.
In addition to clothes for three people for six days, we had the wheelchair and all of its various accessories to return, a blanket and pillow for me for the sleep study, both American Girl dolls (and their dog), Sarah Kate’s knee immobilizers and canes, a tote bag with various PT home program accessories (straps, e-stim, etc.), a stroller, and two bags of hand-me-down clothes for cousin Emily.
Mr. Andi gassed up my car the night before and picked up a little happy for me while he was out: a Dr. Pepper in a glass bottle. I snapped a quick photo from the street next to the house before we drove away, and at that moment Green Day’s “Wake Me Up When September Ends” came on the radio. I decided it was the perfect theme song for the Endless Summer (though just making it to the beginning of September would be good enough!)
I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best re: finding a parking space in downtown Auburn at Toomer’s Corner. As we pulled up to that historic intersection, the clouds parted and the angels sang and we nabbed a space right in front. I had grilled pimento cheese and (of course, if you’ve ever ever ever been there you know) a glass of lemonade.
We stayed in Auburn about two hours – most of that with AnnMarie and Hannah, although we did pop in to J&M Bookstore for a few minutes to browse. I bribed Sarah Kate with a new pink Auburn hat and Auburn T-shirt (which she wore on the trip, although she also wore her Alabama Softball shirt) and picked up an Auburn Tervis water bottle for myself.
I told Sarah Kate we absolutely positively had to leave Auburn by 1:00 (i.e., 2:00 Atlanta time) so we could make it through downtown Atlanta by 4:00. SUCCESS! We pulled out at 12:59. Unfortunately, we had to stop an hour up the road for someone to take a potty break, so we were driving through downtown right at 4:00 (we barely made it, but we made it!), arriving at my sister’s house before she or my brother-in-law made it home from work (my mom and stepdad were there with the cousins, though). Chaos ensued.
On Friday, we went to the American Girl Store and Bistro for lunch. I wish I could say it was A Delightful Girly Adventure For All, but it mostly was just A Delightful Girly Adventure for Sarah Kate and Emily, because in addition to the two girls, my mom, and my sister Meredith, we also had my sister’s youngest who is fifteen months old and … Nathan. We did, however, bring “his” doll so we could pretend he was legit.
No one was fooled, I can assure you.
On Friday night, we went to Family Bingo Night with Aunt Meredith and Uncle Jonathan. Most of my evening was spent in futile bursting attempts to have an adult conversation with Meredith while Nathan drove cars under the tables and plotted his escape, but Jonathan and Sarah Kate were ALL IN on the bingo.
On Saturday, we hit the Converse outlet where all three Slighs in attendance got new kicks, then headed for the one-year-old birthday party of a very special little boy whose momma has been a dear friend to me for a quarter century (which makes me sound so old!)
I’d love to share more about him – especially a photo, because he is ADORBS! – but at the moment I can’t. What I will do is this: ask you to please pray very, very hard that I’ll have the opportunity to tell you more about him soon. It’s so very important that you do. Trust me on this.
After the presents were opened and the cake was smashed and Sarah Kate got hyped up on a giant red swirled lollipop and left her cane in the middle of the cul-de-sac (which we did not discover until we had driven a half hour east), we headed back to Meredith’s, grabbed her and the other kids and headed off to paint pottery.
Are you tired yet? Because reliving the weekend through the keyboard is wearing me out.
But it could have been much worse. Nathan was remarkably well behaved at Meredith and Jonathan’s house – mostly because he found his cousin Jon David’s stash of cars and trucks and spent a ridiculous amount of time lining them up and driving them around.
On Sunday, we drove to Birmingham, where we met my dad and stepmom for an early dinner. Sarah Kate went home with them while Nathan and I headed to Children’s Hospital for a sleep study. He even had sleep study-themed pajamas. 🙂
Oh, sleep study… How do I loathe thee? Let me count the ways.
I loathe thee to the depth and breadth and height…
Unbelievably, I had to wake HIM up the next morning. I honestly couldn’t tell you the last time I woke him up in the morning. It is always, always, always the other way around, and I am not a late sleeper.
Bottom line on the sleep study: We survived the night. He still has sleep apnea. It hasn’t gotten worse. No C-PAP for now. Come back next year.
I returned the wheelchair and picked up Sarah Kate a new cane for school (purple!), as the ones she’s using now are loaners and really too short (cane photo to come next week). The rest of Monday was largely uneventful – we rested and prepped for Sarah Kate’s follow up with her rehab doctor the next day. Bottom line on that visit: Sarah Kate is a good bit ahead of where they expected her to be at this point, but she still has a ways to go.
On Tuesday morning, we packed up our things and I loaded up the car one last time, less the wheelchair and hand-me-downs but with a few extra items, including a new set of golf clubs that Uncle Jonathan bought for Sarah Kate (now she has to learn to play, right? 😉 ) My dad entertained Nathan by teaching him how to drive (!!!) the golf cart.
Look out, world! The next #MayberryRoadTrip may be quite an adventure.