The following is an interview/conversation about our first IRL visit between myself and the RaMbLeR. You can see HER version of the story HERE!!
The RaMbLeR: So, tell me
Mary (as in Typhoid Mary) I mean Mel, how was your drive from North Dakota all the way to Oklahoma?
Mel: Hmm, lets see, it started out great. I figured we had the whole day to get down there, so I really tried to make it fun for the kids (all 4 of them)
The RaMbLeR: Did you drive straight thru or did you have any detours?
Mel: We stopped often (I think I said I wish I hadn't potty trained the 3-yr-old), but really my intention was to drive straight there, not overnight stop. I didn't realize we wouldn't get there until 2am. It was really great until the last 2-3 hours.
The RaMbLeR: Until the end? Even with the long drive all of that was ok?
Mel: Well, it was about the last few hours when the FIRST two kids started puking. I was on the turnpike so there was nowhere to pull over. I yelled from the driver's seat "Grab your McDonald's bag!!! Puke in that!!" I kept calling to update, and when I could I stopped to clean and change the 2 pukers. Good times, good times.
(Oh, I also convinced all of them it was the McDonald's so we wouldn't have to eat there all the way back. It worked)
The RaMbLeR: Are you sure it was your convincing or just that they decided it wasn't quite as good a second time and didn't want to chance a third....or forth?
Also, I seem to recall someone needing me to send them directions along the way cause they thought they could 'wing it'?
Mel: GAH! Oh yeah, I didn't trust the Google maps directions, so I kept calling for better ones. I ended up pretty much using the route it sent me in the first place!
The RaMbLeR: Well, once you FINALLY pulled into my driveway (or actually spotted me as you came around the curve), what was your first thought?
Mel: I thought you looked just as cute as your picture, even at 2 am. And for some reason I thought you'd be waaay taller than me (like everyone else), but we're not far from the same size. How about you...?
The RaMbLeR: HeHe...Honestly (since I couldn't really SEE you - except your little hand frantically waving back and forth), I thought "Thank you Lord for getting my poor crazy friend here in one piece!" and wondered what I could possibly do to help get you settled.
Then as you stepped out of the van I thought you were just as cute as a button! (whatever that means...but I always took it as a great thing...either way, you were so cute crawling out trying to gather up whatever you could)
Mel: Were you afraid to take my vomiting kids in??
The RaMbLeR: Nah, not at all! I'm used to dealing with lots of vomiting/spit up/drool from Roo. At that time I had NO clue you were bringing the plague into my home! You also had ME convinced that it just HAD to be the McDonald's food. ;)
Mel: At the time, since it was just the two, I really
hoped thought it was!! I really thought about turning around back about 2 hours, but I'd made it this far...!
The RaMbLeR: Really? You really thought you could drive back another .... how many hours did it take?? 12, 13, 16? LOL
Even with the plague, I couldn't let you!
Mel: Well, I appreciate you being brave enough to take us in, especially considering what the rest of the week was like. SO, what exciting things
do did you have planned for us?! I'm sure as soon as these two are feeling better we can get to the fun!!
The RaMbLeR: Oh, I had researched and bugged other friends trying to find some fun interesting things to take the kids to. I had to ask others since typically we don't go anywhere.
I figured we could take the kids to a local water park that only costs
$6 $7 or less to get in. And, another fun adventure to a museum that has dinosaurs, but.....
Mel: Oh, #1 and #2 are feeling better, but now #3 is sick. AND your school called to tell us your son #1 is sick... sigh. Maybe tomorrow will be the right day??
The RaMbLeR: Sure....or so we thought!! Luckily we hadn't already made the 45 minute drive all the way to the museum! So, we turn around, I park YOUR van (that I had to drive because YOU were too ill to handle the driving) and after helping UNLOAD all the very confused children (that had advised me that we were going the wrong way as we pulled into the neighborhood) I hopped into my vehicle to race off to the school for the baby.
What were YOU thinking/feeling at that time?
Or were you too busy puking while I was gone?
Mel: I felt pretty bad that Roo was sick, especially since there was probably minimal interaction between my sick kids and him. Poor guy. Made me fear that there was more on the way. But I think he handled it the best of everyone. And I didn't get sick until evening. AFTER I ate tons of quesadillas. Which were, by the way, GREAT...the first time. I think I admitted I was sad/glad I was with you sick instead of at home sick with 4 kids who would want to be fed when I couldn't stand the sight of food. My husband is gone nights and I don't think I'd have survived. SO I guess I owe you for that!!! So while I was going to bed early, how was the rest of your evening??
The RaMbLeR: Ah, one of those double edged swords, eh? The guilt along with the gratitude? I knew you were miserable and more than happy to 'get to know' your family (even in your absence). I just wanted you to be able to puke in peace! LOL
My evening went reasonably well. As you mentioned I think Roo handled the plague the best. Well, at least at home. I forgot to mention when I picked him up from school his teachers were trying to sanitize the carpet AGAIN from all his puking. I'm guessing he probably didn't have much left by the time I brought him home.
So I had fun playing with the kids and hauling 'The Siren' around. Although The Siren was off while you were not in sight. hehe
I fully expected to be up some throughout the night dealing with cleaning up Roo but I was pleasantly surprised and I was not up....with HIM...instead I was up ALL night with my #2.
Did he wake any of you while he was so loudly hurling? I remember I kept telling him "shhhh, you are gonna wake everyone". It was a little inconvenient that the bathroom he uses was right outside the door to your 'hotel'.
Mel: Ha ha, I think I remember hearing him, but I was too busy concentrating on not joining him to mind much. My kids sleep like rocks, so no one woke up. Except JC, who decided 6 am was plenty late. I think by late that morning everyone was feeling a little better. I enjoyed the makeshift water park. My kids thought it was fun. Maybe not ACTUAL waterpark fun, but even the little kids got to play safely.
How were YOU feeling?
The RaMbLeR: Oh yes, 6:00, The Siren, like clockwork! Dang he's the most adorable little siren! His cute smile just makes your heart melt and makes the siren sounds almost forgettable. Actually, other than when I was actually still half sleeping, it just made me giggle!
I think by that time you were really starting to kick back into gear, weren't you? And Taz seemed to be his normal rowdy self. So, yeah, I'm glad the makeshift waterpark, courtesy of a tarp I had, a water sprinkler, my neighbors hose spraying down my Little Tykes slide and of course water balloons, entertained everyone.
Oh, and as for me........well, I suppose it was time for me to have MY turn on your LONG list of infectees.
Mel: Long and Distinguished
The RaMbLeR: I am a little fuzzy on the goings on at this point. I'm not even sure what everyone had for supper, I just remember there was NO WAY I was eating ANYTHING. So, instead I crashed! It was your turn to get to play with the kids without me.
Thank you so much for taking over for me! Even though my Hubby's at home, it takes both of us to keep the house running smooth (or at least the way we are used to).
So, tell me, what did YOU do while I was snoozing?
Mel: Well, your hubby cooked some great BBQ! I felt bad you didn't have any. We managed to feed everyone and settle the babies. I cleaned up the kitchen while our big kids played. I think SM and Aria managed to stay up until almost midnight. I was just happy they got along. I remember when we were on our way SM thought he'd only get to play with Max, since girls do girly things. Aria was eager to show him she was "one of the boys". They bonded over computer and video games. My kids still talk about what SM had or what SM said. I think the NEXT day was probably one of the better ones... minus the water park incident ;)
Aria needed a new suit, the RaMbLeR snapped a shot of our choices (I stayed with the kids!)
Well…is this visit better from here on out…or not??
Please come back tomorrow for part two, where there may or may not be less bodily fluid involved…hahahaha!