Saturday, November 30, 2013

Sea Day!

Isn't she just adorbs?  Just like her LaLa!!

Today was the obligatory brunch at Palo (again, if you don’t know what that is, you need to cruise Disney). We were disappointed to find out that Sylvester, the best server ever, was not on the ship but home on vacation in India (what nerve!). But Lazlos, a friend of Sylvester (who isn’t a friend of Sylvester?) treated us very well and we left stuffed as usual.

Steve and Everley spent a little time in the splash area (and yes, I have the same swimsuit of course), Molly did mixology with Nancy and Katie (I guess for any future bartending career), Maribeth went to the movie to see “Thor” in 3-D, and I spent some time with Everley as she rearranged all the pens in the pen display in the shop. Other than that, it was a pretty uneventful day … at least as uneventful as a cruise vacay can be! 

Today was a great day because: we met Lazlos who was a great host; Everley time

Friday, November 29, 2013

Off We Go Into The Wild Blue Water!

Everely - 24 Disney Junior - Score!!
While others are shopping madly for Black Friday bargains, we are boarding the Disney Magic for a 5-night cruise out of Miami. We booked this cruise a long time ago, and it seems funny that it is already here – guess time flies when you’re having fun (or old)!

Anyhow, we crammed the car full of bags for 4.5 (that would be Everley) people and Steve and I headed off to the port. Because the car was jammed full, there wasn’t room to get out the newly-bought car seat and pop up the 3rd row seating in the car. So Maribeth, Molly, and Everley headed out in a cab. Which apparently had no air conditioning. Which made it a crappy ride. Which Everley took to heart, requiring a diaper change on the floor of the terminal. Yes, we’re those kind of people – the kind that prefer clean air to crappy air.

Eventually we made our way onto the boat, had lunch, and were soon on our way. I’ll try to post some pictures, since the ship is very decorated for Christmas, but we also have a toddler onboard who likes to play with the camera and take selfies of her nose, so we’ll see. 
Today was a great day because: boarding the ship for vacation; boiled shrimp for lunch; seeing Katie and Nancy (our cruise family from January) and their family

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today was a great day because: safe travel to Florida for Maribeth, Everley, and Molly; lazy day in the hotel room; safe travel to Miami and meet up with Molly and Everley; thankful for family and friends who make life so meaningful and special

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Over The River and Through The Woods ...

Sometimes I have a packing list for my travels. Sometimes I just count how many days I will be gone and start counting underwear. Sometimes I think I just want to take a credit card and my boarding pass and just leave. I guess I’m saying there’s all kinds of packing, and no matter how hard I try, I usually manage to forget something, even with a list.

This current trip was a no-list trip. Because we’ve got a lot of different things going on, I just tried to think of those activities and pack accordingly. The main things to remember were my passport (for the cruise), my wallet (for the stuff I would forget), and my laptop (how else would you keep abreast of my adventures?). And I am happy to say that all those things were packed and successfully loaded into the car.

On parts of this trip we will have Lindley and Everley. Since part of this trip is a road trip, we will need a car seat, which each parent has in his or her respective car and which I have two of in mine. Since L and E will be riding in the car at some point during this trip (but never together), we would need one car seat to accompany us (they are both eligible to ride in the same size/type card seat but they are not eligible to ride sans car seat). So guess what we forgot to put in the car? Yup – the car seat, any car seat, of the at least six that are in residence in Nashville.

Naturally the absence of the car seat hit me when we were about an hour out of Nashville. Of course those flying in on Thursday could check one of the car seats with them. However two of those, Maribeth and Everley, are flying with an airline who requests a fee for checked bags (which is why we have their pre-packed checkable bags with us in the car). The other person flying in would be Molly, who is flying on checked-bags-free Southwest. Conceivably she could check a car seat. But since none of the car-seat-needing individuals were conceived by her, and since she nor her airport pickup wishes to wait for a checked bag on Thanksgiving, it was obvious that a new car seat was going to have to be purchased.

Thank goodness for text messaging, and Maribeth’s ability to text me (and my ability to retrieve said messages) exact car seats and stores where I could get a parent-approved car seat – in other words, which car seat to get at Wal Mart. Which we did today at some Wal Mart along I-75 in south Georgia. I also picked up some contact solution, which I realized that I had about 6 drops left in the container I brought from home. And some reader glasses, since the ones I bought at Dollar Tree last week for $1 broke today and Molly does not approve of the band aid method I used the last time my Dollar Tree readers broke (yes, I used a band aid, a real band aid, to wrap around the leg to secure it to the glasses part – it’s a variation on the nerd fashion). I possibly picked up a few other items, as one cannot go into Wal Mart without coming out with at least a sack of stuff.

But the best part was the checkout lady who, when observing my car seat purchase, said that she needed to get another one of them, because the dog had chewed through the straps of hers because that was when she had a car that the door wouldn’t close and the dog got in and chewed the straps and it was chewed down to where there was just a few threads left.

Anyhow, now we have a car seat and are headed to our next stop which would be lunch, possibly at Sonny’s barbecue. We’ll arrive in Orlando (but not Disney World) this afternoon for Phase I of this trip, in plenty of time to figure out the car seat straps before we actually have to strap a child into it.

By then I’m sure I shall have remembered something else I forgot …
Today is a great day because: I had breakfast at Truitt’s with Steve; shopped at Wal mart and met nice checkout lady; lunch at Sonny's with Steve; chat with bellman at Orlando hotel; another nice bed waiting for me at the hotel; Steve picking up Starbucks drinks and mug for me

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

The Streak Will Live On!!

There are a few races that I repeat because I like them. They’re fun and in a fun place. There are also races that I do for those reasons and for another – in that particular race I am a “streaker” and no, that doesn’t mean I wog around in my birthday suit. It means that I did the very first race and I’ve done it every year since then.

I was very dismayed to find that in 2014, two of my favorite half-marathons for which I am a streaker, were scheduled for the very same day and I would not be able to compete in them both. The Princess Half Marathon at Disney has always been the last Sunday in February. The Donna, or the Breast Cancer Marathon, changes its date, and this year it was going to be on the same date. The Princess is in Orlando and the Donna is in Jacksonville. While both were in the same state, and while there is plenty of me to be divided into two people, I simply was going to have to choose.

I entered both, hoping one would change its date, but neither did. I wrote (as did Molly) both, hoping that my highly sought-after (at least sought-after by my imaginary friends) opinion would be heeded and somebody would change the date. Alas, it was not going to happen. Disney said they always had the same date – Donna was the one who changed their date. I never really heard back from Donna.

I decided to go with Disney. After all, their date had not changed, and it had become an annual girls trip. As much as I hated to choose, I did, realizing that my Donna streak was about to end.

But then something great came about. No, the dates didn’t change. On Sunday while we were sitting in the airport after the St. Pete half marathon, Molly was reading a “Women’s Running” magazine. There was an ad for the Donna race, and at the top was the listing for the races – and one of the listings was for “virtual.”

We went to the website and found that the virtual meant that you could register for the Donna and do the 13.1 miles on your own, then post it and then you would be sent your medal. In the Q&A section was this question:
I am a DONNA Streaker. Will the virtual event allow me to keep my ‘streak’? Yes. You will be able to maintain your streaker status completing the virtual event.
Needless to say I was very excited about this (and am hoping that everybody gets their own race date in 2015).

Today I emailed the Donna and got all the details worked out. I do have to start a fundraising account (minimum is $150 and no, I’m not asking for donations. At least not for this race. I still have another 3-Day in 2014. But if you want to donate money, this is a great cause, as all the race fees go to the Mayo Clinic for breast cancer research and treatment – check it out here).

Anyhow, I’m just happy that it has all worked out. And that Molly paid attention when she was reading the magazine, because I had pretty much given up. I guess it goes to show you to never give up and and also to complain about your issues in case somebody else finds out some important information for you. 

I’m still a streaker!! Yay!! I will go get dressed now ...
Today was a great day because: I spent the day with a puny Everley; went Wal-Mart-ing with Everley; cooked Thanksgiving dinner/Lynnette’s birthday dinner and had all the family over; got packed and in the car by 6:45pm to head to Atlanta on the road trip to Florida; had a lovely bed waiting on me at the Courtyard in McDonough, GA

Monday, November 25, 2013


Sometimes when I fly the friendly skies, the flight attendants start talking about “turnaround” as we arrive at our destination. It's mainly for those passengers who are staying on the plane to continue the flight and get to another destination. The flight attendants talk about how the passengers need to stay in their seats so that they can count them before they change seats (granted, this is for Southwest where if one boarded under a “C” then they for sure are going to charge for the front once the deplaning passengers deplane). Then they discuss turnaround, meaning they need to do some housekeeping before letting the new passengers in. I am only describing this because (a) it fills this space very nicely, and (b) today is my “turnaround” day.
Molly and I arrived home yesterday evening.  For me that involved loading the suitcases (mine and hers) into the house (wondering why I would have Molly’s suitcase when she lives in her own house?  Because in order to get all our purchases home and into checkable luggage, we had to do some creative packing, ergo some of my stuff was in her suitcase and vice-versa).  Today was the day to unpack the suitcases, wrap any gifts that might have been purchased, wash clothes, and attempt to put away stuff.  Why?  Because we are leaving again tomorrow.

Yes, I know.  I seem to travel a lot.  The way Davidson travel works (at least one of the ways) is that we book trips based on several criteria:  work, Southwest cheap sale price fares, races with long finish times, shopping, and cruise sales.  The upcoming trip combined several of those factors.

Steve and Molly have a long-standing Black Friday shopping trip to Orlando every year.  A year or so ago we booked a cruise on the future newly refurbished Magic ship for this week.  Sam has a conference next week in Orlando while Lynnette is in Cleveland at a seminar and Lindley, while brilliant, is legally unable to stay by herself.  Add to the mix that Maribeth managed to finagle a few days off from work while Mathieu could not and Everley wants to go where everyone else wants to go, and you have our current trip plans.  Add in a sista and sista-friend, and there you have it.
I would try to list who’s coming and going, but you would need a calculator, a map, and possibly a slide rule to figure it out.    

Besides, I need to go do laundry and get Maggie the Cat out of the suitcase.  She does not like turnaround at all!!
Today was a great day because:  I got in two miles with KB; picked up Everley from school and had some Everley time; Steve’s safe travel home from Mississippi