Thursday, August 29, 2013

Home From Arizona

It was a great trip! 
Left Pittsburgh, which was somewhat crazy given that we saw a wreck that had traffic on the bridge stopped and the parkway was lined up, but we arrived and our plane took off on time.  L O N G plane ride (4+ hours).  It was 111degrees when we landed in Phoenix, so we went to the hotel.  Interestingly enough you couldn't lower the temperature in the room to less than 76. 
Headed to Flagstaff the next day and thank goodness for relatives!  She took over where I was chicken, like hiking down Walnut Canyon. Although I went on a wild jeep ride through the desert, I would have settled for the mild ride.  Hanging on for dear life, wondering on this first day of the trip, if I would ever survive for the rest of the trip. When our guide asked if we wanted to take the "safe" way back or the "wild" way back, I couldn't even speak...I thought this was the mild ride.  Noooo, everyone cheered and wanted the wild way back.  When asked about the different levels, our guide said there was a mild one, a wild one and an OMG, buckle up wild one.  I swear we were on the OMG, buckle up wild one.  All four tires were off the ground on at least two occasions. 
The train ride to the Grand Canyon was fun....well, kind of fun.  Kids said it was their least favorite part of the trip.  But doesn't everyone have to see the Canyon at least once?  Did I mention, heights are not my favorite thing?
The kids did an adventure course, so proud of them for even doing it.  Not an easy task, for sure.
The "road trips" afford me an opportunity to experience three children for a week.  Without their parents. 
It's wonderful to watch Matt tap someone on the shoulder and be on their opposite side.  Such a wonderful prank that seldom works. 
It's wonderful to see a group hug in the middle of the parking lot at Target.
It's wonderful to stand at the top of Walnut Canyon and hear Matt let out a....what?  Scream?  Wild call?  And then to hear a child next to me ask "us that a wild animal" and me respond, "no, that's Matt". 
It's wonderful to hear Katie sing show tunes non stop, morning, noon, and night.
It's wonderful to hear Alyssa and Matt giggling non stop from 6PM until midnight, and I do mean non stop.
And you know what is really wonderful?  To see three children on the bed, two on ipads and one on phone texting, doing face time, trying to help Matt set up instagram. 
Oh, and did I mention making videos?  Something about Pip.  Dragging me to be a part of it, and if they post it....well.....I think they know better.
The pillow fight on the last night has become a tradition. I think I won.
I hope road trips never end.  Although Katie begins college next fall, the kids get older, one can always hope.  They did ask where we were going next year.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

This is what showed up at Phipps on Wednesday.  She came through the door with an attitude.  She was the cutest thing ever.  I asked her mom for permission to photograph her, which she gave me. Our theme for story time was Garden Fairies, so I thought perhaps she dressed for the occasion.  Her mother explained that for her birthday party they had decided on the theme of "Breakfast at Tiffany's".  And you know, I cold see the resemblance of Audrey Hepburn!

Here we are, a week away from the road trip 2013.  It will be to Arizona.  And it really isn't a road trip, we are flying.   We had a pre-travel planning meeting on Thursday and we are all excited.  Lots to do, lots to see, so we'll keep everyone posted.

Observation.  Garbage men. The recycle truck seem to lumber down the street first, usually around 6AM.  Jokes abound between the driver and the pick up person.  Laughter.  Fun times.  So, now I am awake.  About an hour later, down comes the garbage truck.  Not sure if these are just generally angry men or if they enjoy seeing how far they can throw the empty garbage can.  Either way, they wait until they are in front of MY house to turn on the thingy that chews up the garbage, and then the throwing of cans begin.  It was suggested that the plastic liner be taken out and have that along the curb (we don't really have curbs in this neighborhood, it's just a figure of speech), but that would mean the animals would have a feast.  Just an observation.

We have this plant now at Phipps.  It's a corpse plant.  Allegedly when it blooms it smells like dead meat. Or a rotting corpse.  WHY would anyone want to see/smell this?  Apparently it was a big success in DC, but you see, in DC you could see it for free.  You have to pay here to see it.  I'll keep you posted about that one.  I won't be here for the most part, so sad......NOT.

Well, dare I say it?  For the most part, the Pirates are doing very, very well.  They are 26 games above 500, and up until last night they looked great.  We are playing the Rockies and they beat us 10-1.  That is not a is the score.  Now, Tim, I know you are working hard.  But that's not a good enough.  I know, it's probably the thin air and the trip from Pittsburgh.  Let's hope tonight is a better night for them.

The Steelers are playing tonight also.  I can't cheer for two teams at once.  I couldn't get excited for the Pirates when the Pens were playing, and I can't get excited about the Steelers now.  My cheering energy must go for the Pirates.