Friday, July 24th
With Nana now on the disabled list (spiral fraction of her fibula, in case you missed yesterday’s post), things took a slightly different turn. Normally, we’re a family on the go. We try to do as much stuff as we can with the short time we have together. Now we got some extra visiting time and time to play with cousins.
No trip to the States would be complete without doing a bit of shopping. Especially in the tax free state of Delaware. Friday morning after breakfast we headed out, just DW, Crash, Bang and myself. We hit up Dick’s Sporting Goods first. DW was looking for a specific pair of running shoes. No luck there. But I did find a pair of running shorts and DW got a new kayak paddle to replace one of ours that had broken a few years ago in a hurricane. (She got to use it yesterday. But more on that later). Crash used some of his birthday money to buy a glow in the dark basketball and Bang got a pair of purple (his favorite color) Umbros- the greatest pair of soccer shorts one can buy. We grabbed a quick bite in the food court, which, except for Sabarro, was entirely different than when I was there however many years ago. It now marks the first time Bang tried a new food- deep fried broccoli cheese bites.
Thursday, the 23rd, was supposed to be family picture day. But because Nana broke her ankle, we postponed it to the next day. Five years ago, when we were all together last, we went to a nearby state park and had photos taken. This time we had an extra person, Bang, who wasn’t even born at the last photo shoot. At our last family photo shoot five years ago, DW had just shaved her head to raise money for Relay for Life – a cancer fundraiser. Her hair had been cut and donated then cut as short as the clippers could cut it. This year, Nana was in a boot for her broken ankle. We hid the crutches from the camera. Then it was back home for meatball subs made by my brother and sister-in-law. Mmmm. Delicious.
Saturday, July 25th
Saturday morning was pretty low key. It wasn’t until after lunch we got on the move. My dad had made a bet that he could fit inside the dog’s kennel. The bet was if he fit we had to buy him ice cream and if he couldn’t fit, he’d buy it. He didn’t fit. Or at least he didn’t force it for fear of needing the fire department to come get him out. The video my brother took of dad trying did make to Facebook. So, after lunch we went to get ice cream courtesy of Pop Pop. Afterward, we all went swimming in the pool of friends of my parents, also my former soccer and wrestling coach in high school. While there, my other high school soccer coach showed up. He said that now he’s retired, don’t be surprised if he and his wife randomly show up at our door. We extended the invite, of course. We only live 1,100 miles away! It was great to go for a dip, the kids loved it and I got to play catch up with some people I hadn’t seen for a long time.
Sunday, July 26th
While Saturday was fairly low key, Sunday was not. There was a big family bash planned at my aunt’s house. There was also rumor of a slip-n-slide. However, before that, we met another aunt at church for Sunday mass. Crash picked up on a couple big differences between mass here compared to home – we sung more here than at home and the communion wafers were crunchier. Then, it was home to change and off to my aunt and uncle’s house for the afternoon. First was the crab feast (or hamburgers and hotdogs if you didn’t like crabs).
Since it was the first time we had this much family together in quite a while we went ahead and celebrated every holiday at once. The crabs we just ate were for the 4th of July celebration. There was also crab chowder for Christmas. This was followed by an Easter Egg hunt for the kids.
Finally, the slip-n-slide was prepared with water and 4 bottles of baby oil. The kids changed into bathing suits and away we went. Myself included. Then my aunt decided she would try it, too. Why not? It looked like so much fun! Unfortunately, when she stepped onto the slip-n-slide she turned it into a slip-n-fall. She intended to go headfirst, but her feet slipped out from under her and she landed on her tailbone and in a lot of pain. The ambulance came to get her, which really made Bang’s day- getting to see an ambulance up close. The next morning we found out she had a compressed fracture of her L3 vertebrae. Fortunately, there were no floating bone fragments she wouldn’t be needing surgery. Remember, my mom already had a broken ankle. Now this!
Once we got home that evening one of my oldest friends came over with his wife and two kids. I’ve been friends with him for about 32 years now – since 1st grade. It was great playing catch up with them and seeing their two boys who are each a year younger than Crash and Bang. On their way out they surprised us with the news that they are expecting baby number 3 in February!
Sorry for the long posts. I do want to you all about trip to see family and friends without boring you with too many details. We really didn’t travel much once we got there. No fancy sights to see. No big outings. Just some fun times with those we love most 🙂 Thanks for reading!