Friday, May 18, 2012

A Special Visit

This past weekend, we headed west and stayed the weekends at my parents' house.  While there, we got to enjoy time with my family and celebrate my mom for mother's day (even though she didn't get what she wanted -- peace and quiet!).  On our way back to Ohio, we stopped at my sister's house and picked up her youngest daughter, 3 year old Gabbie!

Gabbie has stayed away from home several times at my mom's and her other grandma's house and she's stayed at our house before but either my mom or her mom were here.  This marks her first solo trip at our house.  I wasn't sure how she would do or how long she'd be able to stay, I shouldn't have worried at all.  She did great!
(On the ride to our house, she was supposed to take a nap.  Instead, she talked the whole time and ate all the ice out of my drink.)

We stopped for dinner at Wendy's on the way home and got to our house in the evening.  We had just enough time to play with her favorite baby doll (which was mine when I was younger) and watch a movie.  Sunday night was the Survivor finale, so Steve and I watched it on our tv while she watched High School Musical on my laptop.  She thought it was cool to wear headphones.

(All ready for bed and watching "Troy Bolten" -aka Zac Efron - sing "Bet On It" from HSM 2)

On Monday, we woke up and watched some Beethoven's 2nd (she calls it the one with Missy) before heading out to go shopping.  We had to get some groceries and find a new slip'n'slide.  When we lived in TN, we bought a small slip'n'slide for the girls to play on when they visited.  I didn't take care of it (it was only $5 and wasn't worth my time - ha ha) and didn't want to mess with packing it for the move, so it got thrown away.  We went to Meijer first for the groceries and to price slip'n'slides.  We of course got slushies to start off.  Meijer didn't have a good selection of slides, so we headed to Walmart where we bought the "Double Wave".  We opted for a 2 lane slip'n'side with 2 inflatable boogie boards for $14.  We'll make this one last longer.

(Waiting patiently for the slip'n'slide to be all set up.)

(It was kind of breezy and the hose water was really cold, but that didn't stop her.  However, towards the end, she claimed a spider was on her -- there was one in the water -- and she had a freak out.  She was done with the slip'n'slide and was convinced that spiders were everywhere.  She wouldn't do the slip'n'slide the rest of her stay because of that little spider.)

(One more shot before the spider freak-out.  She enjoyed playing in the pool at the end.  She would use her "surfboard" to escape from the "sharkies" on the slide.)

After playing outside some, we went inside and played Chutes & Ladders.  After playing it the normal way and then with her made up rules we at a snack and watched Hairspray, which is now her favorite movie.  She absolutely loves Link Larkin  (Zac Efron).  Throughout her stay, I think we watched it almost 2x a day.  After our break inside, we went outside to plant and water flowers and wait for Steve to get home.  When he got home, we headed to a nearby Park to swing and slide (that's all they had to offer).

(She tended to water small spots in front of the flowers instead of the actual plant, but she wanted to do it all by herself!)

(How cute is she??)

We of course ended our day with some more Hairspray and popcorn.  I make my popcorn on the stove the old fashioned way.  I also have different toppings you can sprinkle on your popcorn.  She ate "popcorn with the cheese" every night while watching Hairspray!

On Tuesday morning we played with her baby doll and went to the neighbor's house to play on her swing set and see the fishies in her "pond".  For lunch, we packed up a picnic lunch and met Steve at his work.  From there, we found a spot nearby and ate our lunch.  We brought bubbles and blew them after we ate and watched a groundhog in a field.  We took Steve back to work, made another stop at Walmart for groceries I forgot, and went home to take a nap!  The previous night, Gabbie didn't sleep the best and kicked me all night long (so I didn't sleep the best either!).  We slept on our guest mattress on the floor in our bedroom while Steve had our bed all to himself.  My other neighbor had stopped by and gave Gabbie some books and toys.  Among the books was a Cookie Monster book that we had to read before every nap and going to bed.  After she woke up, we went back outside to have a water gun fight.  Mine didn't work the best, so I guess you can say Gabbie won.  We ended our evening with more Hairspray and popcorn with cheese.

(Playing outside on the neighbor's swing set.)

Originally, Gabbie was supposed to go home on Wednesday, we were having too much fun and she wasn't ready (and neither was I) to go home.  We negotiated with her mom to stay an extra day.  With our extra day, we played American Girls, went to the park (without Steve), met the neighbor's animals, took a nap, played more on the swing set next door, did some laundry (involving Gabbie slipping down some stairs in the basement), more Hairspray and popcorn with cheese, and painted each other's nails.   Gabbie picked all the colors (a different one for each nail).  I painted her nails, and she painted mine.  She didn't do too bad of a job!

(Swinging at the park!  The park also had a really tall (20+ish ft) curly slide that scared me to death.  I was terrified she'd slip and stumble down all the stairs or slip at the top and topple down.  But she was a big girl and did it all by herself.  I stayed at the bottom to "catch" her at the bottom of the slide.  When we went with Steve, he was supposed to catch her once and didn't and she shot off the end of the slide, landing in the dirt. Ooops :)!)

(Check out all those colorful nails!)

On Thursday morning, we got in one last viewing of Hairspray before cleaning up all the toys and packing up her stuff.  I was an emotional mess and wasn't ready to say goodbye.  We had so much fun and I enjoyed having a little companion 24/7.  She, too, was a mess.  Only she is an introvert and just shut down.  She had her shoulders cowered and sat on the floor in my bedroom and wouldn't talk or look at me.  We had a little talk and I explained I was going to drive her to meet with her mommy and we'd eat lunch together.  She seemed okay with that and proceeded to get ready.  We met halfway at a little town that had a Subway sandwich/gas station combo.  When she saw mommy, she shut down and just held on to me.  I told her I wouldn't leave until after lunch and she perked up and went to mommy.  We got lunch and then headed over to a play area across the street to eat outside.  After we ate, we headed over to a little park where Gabbie played on a jungle gym and swings while I got to catch up with my sister.  After a couple hours, we headed back to the gas station and said goodbye.  Luckily, she was distracted by freaking out about a fly in the car to realize I was leaving.  I found out later that she had a fit in the van about going home. and is still not happy about leaving my house today.  The feeling is mutual.  

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