Oh, boy... the drive from Colorado really kicked my butt and I am just now coming out from under the cloud. I suppose a 16 hour drive in this heat and no air conditioning will do that... must make a note to remind myself of that little fact. More on that later, though. I'm going to do the trip all in one post, so hold on!
To start from the beginning... we had a great time. Having more than a couple of days to see everybody really made a big difference. We slept on a futon at Randy's, 'cause he's the only one with an extra room. We split the cost of the futon with Randy and R-Beth so we would have someplace to sleep while we where there... it was definitely cheaper than a hotel, although, perhaps not quite as comfy. It was double bed size and just a tad short for Glenn, but we managed. It was neat 'cause I got to wake up to Aiden standing in the doorway to say good morning on the last day... it's the little things, y'know? Here's a pic of Aiden with Cain, their dog. Both of them are chunks!
It took a few days for both Sophia and Aiden to really warm up to us, but they finally did and we were pretty good substitutes for Mom and Dad by the end of the two weeks... well, at least for a couple of hours at a time! ;0) Sophia is a handful but that pretty much comes naturally, considering who her Mom and Dad are... hee! Here's a pic of her styling for the camera... with spaghetti-o's on her nose! LOL!
We also got to see Josh and J-Beth's new little house AND their new little bundle of joy! We did alot of baby holding... I love babies! Here's Chloe with her loverly Mama.
Both Glenn and I got smiles out of her when she was awake enough, which was great. We ended up spending the night a couple of times... we went up for supper and then we were having such a good time (plus having a couple of drinks) that we decided to stay. I'm really glad we did because we got to see Chloe during the morning when she was really awake.
We did ALOT of cooking and eating... ribs on the grill were a hit...
as well as a delicious Beef, Portobello and Gorgonzola stew that Josh made one night for everyone at Randy's (along with some grilled chicken). It was the first time in quite awhile that the family was all together... a big meal with some late-night, early morning Wii action was just the ticket. Here are the girls somewhere around 1am or so... we were having fun! ;0) From left to right:
J-Beth, yours truly, R-Beth, and Mollie (Nat's girlfriend).
ETA: I didn't get a pic of Randy in here so I need to rectify that little oversight... here he is feeding Aiden dinner...
The tattooed Wild Child is a very good Daddy. ;0)
We also went out to dinner with my brother, Ed and his wife Dana, as well as my mother and Josh and J-Beth. We went to Bisetti's in old town Fort Collins and I highly recommend it. We had a private dining room and the food was stellar. We had a really good time and Chloe slept through the whole meal which allowed everyone to eat and chat. I forgot to take my camera, though, so no pics.
We also spent quite a bit of time (and money, ahem) getting long, lovely Luci ready for the road. Here she is on our carport...
Luci is a 1978 Cougar that Josh bought for himself a few years ago. It was a great car when he was single, but it doesn't work so well with car seats. Glenn wanted to buy it from him but then we had the idea to trade our 1999 Avalon for it. This would allow us to get the Cougar and Josh and J-Beth to have a good 4-door family car. So, that's what we did. Unfortunately, ol' Luci needed quite a bit of work done on her, as well as new tires; however, since the amount of money we spent on Luci doesn't even begin to touch what I have spent on sewing, crafting, quilting and stitching over the years, I consider it a fair trade. ;0) But she is home now, and that's what matters.
Last, but certainly not least, I managed to wrest Titania from Nat's hands. Here she is in all her glory, the voluptuous little minx!
I love it! It should be great fun to embellish. I'm not sure if the original Titania had red hair but it just seemed right to me so that's what I asked him to do. Now, to see if I can manage to get it printed successfully onto some silk for the Midsummer CQ... keep your fingers crossed! Here's the artist, doing that other thing that he does so well... video games...
And now, about that trip home. See, there was this oil leak in long, lovely Luci... it wasn't much in Colorado; however, with the pressure of continued speeds around 75 mph the engine started knocking after we managed to get over Raton Pass (Luci doesn't like heights) and when we stopped to check, she was 3 quarts low on oil. Gah! We loaded her up with oil and over the next 9 hours or so, we added 10 quarts in all. She was NOT happy, so we weren't using the air conditioner and it was in the 90's coming across New Mexico and into Arizona... man, it was hot. By the time we got to Flagstaff and headed for Phoenix, Luci was verra upset... she REALLY DOESN'T LIKE HEIGHTS! (Flagstaff tops out around 7000 feet above sea level or something like that.) By the time we got to Phoenix at 9pm, it was 106° and I was really wiped; although Luci was doing better since we were much lower in elevation. Last weekend is a blur as I reacted to the heat and other stress. But... it's over, I can once again think straight and I know never to drive nearly 1000 miles in a car without air conditioning in the middle of summer in the southwest! See... ya' learn something new every day!
Whew... that was a long post! Thanks for hanging in there... see ya in a few days!