Back from the cold desert

Ken and Mary got hitched this weekend and so we took the trek out to Phoenix to witness the event. The drive usually takes about five hours, unless you are traveling with a pregnant lady and a toddler. Add an hour for each and you have our approximate travel time. Here’s some photo and commentary from our travels.

One of the rest stops we peed at (and yes, I will pee in a port-o-potty if need be, I’m over seven-months-pregnant and will stop at nothing to empty my bladder) had a little hole full of fire ants. Lily was fascinated with these little creatures and if I had been in charge I would have scooped her up and ran like HELL away from the freaky little biters. But since Mark was watching her they chose instead to throw sticks in the hole and watch as the ants worked together to pull the things out. They had a blast.

Shortly after that stop, Lily became very restless and so we decided to let her friend Piggy drive.

He did rather well and only ran us off the road two or three times (but who’s counting?). If nothing else, it made Lily very happy to see the little man take such position in the world.

We got into Phoenix at about eleven at night and without a hotel reservation had to head towards the wedding site and see what we could find around there. By this point I had a raging cold and was producing more snot than should be allowed. Lily was sleeping soundly while I sang a song about my eyes feeling like little black coals in my head. We finally found a Hampton Inn… which was booked solid. But the nice lady behind the counter was kind enough to give us some phone numbers and before long we were checking into a Days Inn. Cheap AND the room was nice. Lily woke up and ran around like a freak in the room for a bit before we wrestled her into the king size bed and held her down until she passed out again. Let me just tell you one thing, sharing a bed with a toddler in a king size is VASTLY different than sharing a bed with a toddler in a queen. I couldn’t even find that child and my husband was in another country he was so far away. She still managed to grope at my face and drive me slightly batty until I turned my back on her. Unfortunately my cold had me waking every hour or so to drink water, shove Kleenex up my nose and yes, pee. Lily had us up and hungry fairly early and we called my sis and her hubby to meet up for breakfast at the Cracker Barrel. We don’t have Cracker Barrel’s in California and my goodness it was yum. And by that I mean there was LOTS of it. I like food.

Back to the hotel for a nap and then off to the wedding site. Now here’s something interesting: Phoenix is in the desert, which is where they keep all the heat. IT WAS COLD. Clouds, wind and rain off in the distance. Cold. Lily started out in her cute little yellow dress and ended up in an extra pair of pants, sweater and jacket. But there was a playground nearby and THAT was all she needed to be happy.

Two skinned knees later (this was before the pants when she was just wearing the shorts) and she’s still happy. See:

And just look at this if you wanna be overwhelmed with cute:

We made it through the actual wedding ceremony with only one meltdown which was quickly halted by the wedding planner swooping over with crackers in hand to distract her from the horror that was the dropped cookie. Brilliant woman. Afterwards we were blessed with the presence of Cristianna who was our flower girl at our wedding five years ago. She has grown to an amazingly wonderful nine-year-old who Lily instantly fell in love with. The two spent a great deal of time off at the park and Mark and I had moments of enjoying each others company like real adults rather than monkeys.

OK, so she looks scared, but she actually had a blast with her new friend. Cristianna carried her all over the place… tough little girl, if you ask me.

Everyone was gathering over at the Bride and Grooms house after the wedding to drink themselves silly but Lily and I ended up crashed out in the hotel room. Mark went alone and enjoyed some time with friends he doesn’t get to see very often. I enjoyed some sleep in between waking every hour or so to drink water, shove Kleenex up my nose and yes, pee. Another Cracker Barrel visit in the morning and then we hit the road once again to get our butts back to my comfortable bed and air with some moisture in it. Phoenix may have been uncharacteristically cold but it was quite characteristically dry. She did pretty well on the trip home, thanks to Mark’s computer acting as a DVD player, me sitting in the back seat with her and some books from KB.

This shot was taken right before she decided to smash her feet inside the book (something that is outrageously funny, if you ask her) and rip a page. She enjoyed some nice board books after that little feat (HA, a PUN!). Am happily home now where I can post any word I want from my own computer in my very nice living room with my freaky dog running around in my very own yard and waiting for my very own cat to come and try to take over my lap. It’s good to be home. Even if the dog just ate about a pound of homemade playdough. Now that’s gonna be pretty on the way out!