Hi, Internet. I am back from a trip to visit my dad for Thanksgiving. It was a great mini vacation, and I am - you guessed it - thankful for a lot of things.
- That this year, we only had to drive six hours for Thanksgiving dinner. We did not have to spend two days driving like we did last year (apparently after having smoked a whole lot of crack). We also didn't have to get up at the crack of dawn, drive to the airport, lug the suitcase, car seat, stroller, and kid onto the shuttle bus, then wait in line at the ticket counter, then wait in line at security, then take a shuttle to our gate, then fly to one airport, then another because we couldn't get a direct flight. Then get our luggage, then go to the rental car counter, then lug all of our stuff to the shuttle bus to the rental car place, then install the car seat, then load up the rental car, then drive two hours to FINALLY get to my dad's house. I am really damned thankful I didn't have to do all of that crap.
- That, at the halfway point, there is an exit where you can find all in one parking lot, a Shell station, a McDonald's, and a Starbucks. I swear, that place is a little slice of heaven.
- That this year, unlike in years past, Jack was actually willing to sleep.
- That we live so much closer to my dad and Vickie that Jack actually knows them and is excited about visiting them. He did well in the car, but for the last 20 minutes, he got antsy. This he displayed by kicking the back of the seat and saying, "Where is Mawmaw and Papa's house?" It's slightly more charming than it sounds, really.
- That Jack was so excited about the prospect of spending an afternoon walking around the lake with my dad looking for snakes that Steve and I were able to spend an afternoon Christmas shopping.
- That Jack is now old enough to see a family movie. We saw Enchanted, and if you have a heart in your body and a brain in your head, get to the movie theater pronto and see it. It's fantastic.
- That this year, we do not have Jack's surgery looming in the near future like we did last year.
- That Jack is now old enough that we don't have to watch him every second for fear he will launch himself into the fireplace. And that he is happy to play with his cousins, giving us a moment's peace.
- That Jack can play independently for long enough that we could unload the car. Granted, this came at a price. In the short amount of time it took for Steve to take one load of stuff out of the car and for me to pee, Jack emptied every single toy out of his toy bins and onto the floor. It was an unholy mess. He then found our shopping bags and started shoving his toys in random order into them. Why? Because he was one of Santa's elves, and he was getting things ready for the sliegh. It should also be added that Jack should be thankful that he is so cute, or this would have been a lot more annoying than it was.