Monday, July 20, 2009

Home from Holiday

I love how the Europeans go on "Holiday" instead of vacation. So, the Lathams (and my parents) went on holiday Sunday/Monday, to... of course, Holiday World.

I so miss the days of my youth when I went to Opryland every year. I was so distraught when I heard it was closing to build a MALL that I vowed never to shop there. Of course, that passed, but I still have very fond memories of every summer there. I should find and scan a photo of me with my friends back then at Opryland -- I have them.

Anyway, I digress.

Josh has been asking for two years for me to take him to Holiday World. Finally, I heard it was going to be cool weather (well, not 90*) on Sunday and we decided on a whim to head out. It turned out to be a classic Griswald family vacation. Those of you not familiar with National Lampoon's Vacation might not get that reference, but if you are familiar and LOVE those movies as much as I did, know that this movie will air on Nickelodeon on Saturday at 7 p.m. CST.

I digress -- again.

We had not gotten more than a mile down the road when Ellie threw up. She's never thrown up so imagine our surprise. Imagine the view from my parent's car behind us when all the windows go down and heads start popping out of the windows. We made it all the way to McDonalds and got her and the carseat cleaned as best we could with wipes and Febreeze and sat it in the back of the truck to air for a bit while we ate breakfast.

After breakfast, we gassed up and were on the road. Holiday roooo-aaaa-dddd (think the theme from Vacation). Ellie apparently has allergies or a cold and every three-five minutes she sneezed and (pardon the grossness) blew snot all over everything. Poor Bryce (Josh's friend), spent the three hour ride pulling out a wipe, wiping her nose and throwing away the wipe. We also had a bib we christened the "snot rag" on the trip. yuk.

We were almost there when we were pulled over by an Indiana State Patrol. Apparently we were doing 65 in a 60. (Reminiscent, again, of Vacation). Ironically, he saw us, all our luggage and three kids crammed in the backseat (all we needed was Aunt Edna on the roof) and said, "You must be headed to Holiday World." Uhhh.... what gave it away? He came back with just a warning, so we were happy about that.

I was beginning to fear we would arrive and find Wallyworld err, Holiday World closed and a big moose out front telling us it was closed for repairs. Fortunately, we didn't and we got in without incident. After making our way across the park to Splashin' Safari, we all got slathered up in sunscreen and everyone headed their separate ways. Do you know how hard it is to make sure everyone has fun when you have a toddler, two tweens, two adults and two seniors? Well, we somehow made it all work and only lost the tweens once. I suspect they found us instead of the other way around.

Ellie only played in the small water pools but seemed to have a good time splashing and wading. She took a nap in the park in her stroller and generally was such a good baby (other than the poor thing sneezing and having her nose wiped every few minutes).

My mom took tons of pictures because I was doing all I could do to make sure I knew where everyone was and keeping up with Ellie and all her accessories, to take many pictures. It was funny -- the few I took of Ellie show the skill she has recently decided she wanted to develop: feeding herself with a spoon and fork. She has become quite the independent little chickadee and wants to feed herself as much as possible. She is also all about drinking from cups with straws. She thinks herself too mature to drink from a mere sippy cup when everyone else has a straw. OY!

I only packed two regular diapers for the park (what was I thinking??) but packed four swim diapers. Near the end of the day, Ellie had to have a new diaper and we realized we were out. I had the great idea of just using a swim diaper. You'll see why this wasn't such a great idea in a bit. Interestingly enough, because of all the water, ummm... throw up, ummmm... snot, and pee, I didn't pack enough clothes for Ellie. Remind me, next time, to overpack for her. When I woke up in the middle of the night and her bottle had leaked all over, her, her pillow and the bed, I just about had my final breakdown.

I continue to digress. (Could someone try to keep me on task???)

We stayed until the park closed at 8:30 and then, like my parents before us, spent another hour wandering around Indiana trying to find our hotel in the midst of what seemed a massive cornfield maze (literally, we looked out our hotel window and were situated in a cornfield). Not realizing that our hotel was an hour ahead of us, we didn't eat dinner at the park and were all STARVING and could only find a Rallys and a McDonalds. I finally gave up on finding Ellie anything remotely healthy to eat and went into the local CVS and bought her a frozen Lean Cuisine.

When we got to the hotel and got Ellie out, SURPRISE, her swim diaper had leaked and her car seat was soaked and so was she. Joy.

We finally all passed out from sheer exhaustion went to bed around midnight. Ellie didn't sleep well and woke up about every hour - two hours crying. It must have gotten bad because this morning I found both Kevin AND Josh sleeping on the floor. Obviously, Ellie, Bryce and I didn't see this as an option because we were all still in our beds.

After breakfast, swimming and packing, we all decided to go by Abraham Lincoln's boyhood home/working farm and do the touristy thing there as well. It was pretty fun and the boys enjoyed it a lot. I told them it was their educational moment for the summer.

Since my mom took the pictures, it might be a bit before I get some posted, but I will as soon as possible.


Mom to 2 Angels said...

I LOVE all the Griswold references! We are thinking of a short day trip there next month. Did you take advantage of the free Pepsi and sunscreen? I think that's the only reason Andy wants to go!

Jeanne said...

What a great story you tell!!

I got caught with the swim diaper problem recently, too.

LaLa said...

Glad you had fun : )

Yeah, swim diapers don't hold in pee...good to know when you are in the baby pool LOL

Corinne said...

Great story ! It gave me a good laugh.As we always say, expect the unexpected !

multimom said...

What a story! I enjoyed every word. Loved the Vacation and Griswold stuff. Nice to know that we're not the only family who has these kind of experiences!

Big hugs to all,


Terri said...

Too funny! Thanks for sharing your 'holiday' story. lol