Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Indiana Visit

 My mom had several free airline tickets, so she offered to pay for me and the boys to visit over Labor Day weekend. Who can say no to free airfare? We had a great time. As always, we were SO busy. If we weren't going places, we were downstairs in the basement playing dodgeball and tag. My mom and older sister just never, ever stop moving and playing. The kids love it! Me . . . well, I love visiting my family, but I come home exhausted. 

I wasn't the only one exhausted.
We took a late flight, and arrived around two in the morning. What did the kids want to do? Go play in the basement. So like good grandparents they are, my parents went down and let the kids play while I unpacked . . . at 2 a.m. They just couldn't get over the fact that my kids weren't tired. Alemitu was even jumping on the trampoline, and of course, talking nonstop. An image of that night that I will never forget is when we were walking in the airport after just getting off of the plane. Alemitu had her cute little book bag on, and when she saw my parents waiting for us at security, she took off running. That backpack was flopping all around, but she just kept running right towards her grandparents. I wish I had my camera out to capture that moment.

The next morning, we played at our favorite park and surprised their cousin Carter. We ate lunch at my favorite restaurant, Pizza King, and then we surprised their cousin Sydney when she got home from school that day. 

At the park

The next day, we went to Kings Island. Once again, they were having a heat wave when I came to visit, but we still had a blast and managed to keep cool. Wes was officially tall enough to ride on every, single ride. Even this one:

Notice the coaster is moving UP that hill, and getting ready to go down a hill that looks like it is straight down. At 80 mph, this ride seems terrifying.

He even sat in the front with Uncle Phil one time. Thank you, Uncle Phil.

Wes and grandpa on the drop zone ride.

Grandpa Jerry and Jerry Jr. -- no one else was brave enough for this one.

That kid has no fear. In fact, later on Wes wanted to do the bungee swing. I had done this once with Adam many years ago, and I remember being absolutely terrified. Well, 15 years later, nothing has changed. I agreed to do with it Wes, and I was absolutely terrified. As we were going up, I gave up the "tough mother" image, and started whining/almost crying to Wes, "I don't think I can do this. Wes, I don't think I can do this!" He agreed with me (but he has selective memory about that part when you ask him.) We went so high, much higher than it appears from the ground looking up. I had to be the one to pull the cord to drop us. My hand was shaking so bad, and it took me a few seconds before I built up that courage --- and then I screamed like a baby all the way down. I guess Alemitu told my parents, "Mommy loves it because she is screaming!" I am so glad I did it and am able to share that memory with Wes, but wow, that was terrifying. There is a new roller coaster coming in April 2014, and when Wes read that on a sign, he immediately said we need to come back in April. He loves Kings Island so much.

Prior to getting on the bungee swing

Alemitu did really well too. Last spring, I put her on a roller coaster that she wasn't ready for. It backfired. She hasn't wanted to ride on anything like that since. So when we went to the area with rides for her age, I had Aunt Tina go with her on a little kid roller coaster. I think we called it the pumpkin ride or something because she kept asking if it was a roller coaster. She was definitely scared at first, but Aunt Tina did a great job, and Alemitu was all smiles when she got off the coaster. After that, she wanted to ride everything. Going with grandpa on the log ride was her favorite. She did that a few times.

Alemitu and Aunt Tina in the 2nd car

Even on the little rides, Alemitu would scream off and on. She thought that is what you are suppose to do if you are having fun.

My easy going Calvin had a great time too. He rode all of the roller coasters that he could, and always had a smile on his face throughout the day. 

Getting soaked by a river rapids ride was Calvin's favorite.
The next day, we went to the movies and spent time with family. On our last full day, the girls went shopping and grandpa and Uncle Phil took the boys to the Indianapolis 500 race track. The boys have been so interested in seeing that race track, and had been talking a lot about it after they saw the movie, Turbo. They really enjoyed themselves, and even kissed the bricks (although if you ask them, their lips didn't actually touch). They had a fun boys' day, and I was so happy my dad thought to take them there. 


The next day we left and went back home. It was a whirlwind trip, but totally worth it. We had such a great time!

Doing homework on the plane

Completely soaked and dripping wet after the river rapids ride.

Whenever they say goodbye to my mom, they have to give her a "monkey hug". This means that they stand on a piece of furniture and jump at her. So far, she hasn't fallen over . . . yet.

This one almost knocks her over.

I love this picture of the boys taken at the Indy 500 track.

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