Wednesday, July 05, 2006

ROAD TRIP!!! (Oh, and some other stuff, including the second-scariest moment of my life)

Oh, didn't I call it? The Karmas took a 4th-of-July Family Roadtrip. We left at 11am and didn't get home until after 9pm. We drove through three states! We estimate that we put about 800 miles on the car. But we'll get to that in a minute.

First, I want to say that I don't want to talk about My Cardinals. I'm just not going to talk about their recent suckiness at all. I'm just not. I absolutely refuse to discuss it.

And another thing I'm not talking about is my progress on the Lucy Bag. Suffice it to say that I'm not a Jedi Grafter yet. And things were going so well up until the point where I had to attach the strap using Kitchener Stitch. Ugh. I had to drag my pitiful three-needle-bindoff-attemptin' ass to my LYS for some Major Professional Intervention.

But I'm not going to talk about it.

Anyway, to get the full chronological effect of the holiday weekend's events, it would probably be best to start with Saturday. R worked, as he does every Saturday, so I got to stay home with The Apes. I had been charged with bringing Cookies out to the Fireworks Soiree at Chez Inlaw, so I whipped up 3 dozen super-easy Peanut Butter Cookies (1 cup Peanut Butter, 1 cup sugar, 1 egg - what's easier than that??) although the recipe after I doubled it should have yielded 4 dozen. Can I help that I love peanut butter cookie dough?

After R got home from work we embarked on the hour-long drive to Chez Inlaw. R's sister and her hubby and 2 sons were in town from Indiana. They're really cool. They're a 2-Lexus family, so we'll call them Mr. and Mrs. Lexus. I should point out that I'm not being derogatory - they're extremely successful and in no way flashy and in-your-face with it. She's a plastic surgeon who specializes in helping military burn victims. He's a corporate lawyer and an accountant. They're doin' ok. More power to 'em. Their sons each have laptops. Must be nice. I think I'll call the boys 1Gig and 2Gig, which is appropriate as the younger one actually has the better laptop.

Of course, in stark contrast, the Aldi family was also in attendance. Mrs. Aldi got me with her famous "Oh, Sarah, I have a new picture for you!" She gave me a picture of Aldiboy which, at first glance, was cute, but as you looked at it longer, you realize that Aldiboy is still growing into his features. He kinda resembles an Anime character.

I was also offered the opportunity to purchase the DVD of Aldigirl's recent dance recital performance for a mere $39.99. I was on the verge of blurting out that I would rather suck $39.99 worth of manure through a straw than watch that, but fortunately I was cut off by the sound of Aldigirl running shrieking through the house. I secretly love it when she acts like an ass. It makes my kids look like angels by comparison.

At dusk, MIL, FIL, the Aldis, the Lexi (plural of Lexus - get it?), and all five Karmas went to stake out a prime fireworks-viewing spot by the lake across the street from Chez Inlaw. The fireworks were actually quite spectacular. I thought the boys would freak out, but they didn't. No, friends, the real excitement came AFTER the fireworks were over.

I loaded up my arms with the blanket, diaper bag, knitting bag, and cooler we had brought. R asked me if he could carry anything for me, I said No, I'm fine. Just get the boys. We looked around and we saw Pie, but we didn't see Beebie or Tito. We figured Beeb must have run ahead with Aldigirl, but I still didn't see Tito. I asked R if he had him. Nope.

Someone from our group must have him, I thought. If he couldn't find me, he'd be screaming his head off. I mean, this is the kid whose incessant screaming once got us kicked out of mass. There are six other grownups in our group. He must be with someone he knows. Surely he'd be freaking out if he was suddenly all alone. He's fine.

It's just a short walk to the house, but in the dark, through a road crowded with people milling about, then through a field of tall grass to Chez Inlaw, it felt a lot farther. R went ahead of me to make sure T was back at the house, then I saw R sprint past me through the tall grass, almost knocking me over.


My heart stopped.

It didn't start again until we found him about a minute later, standing with a mother and her children by the side of the road. I was close to tears. He was cool as a cucumber. I thanked the nice lady for keeping him safe, and I felt like the shittiest parent ever for letting my kid get lost in a crowd in the dark at The Fireworks.

I still can't believe he didn't freak. The one time I was counting on him to make a whole lot of noise, he didn't make a sound. In retrospect, I guess I'm glad he didn't panic. We figure he must have started following someone and when realized it wasn't me, he just froze until someone found him. He was so quiet, I must have walked right past him. Thank God we were in a gated community in the middle of nowhere instead of downtown St. Louis or something.

For some reason, he told the woman that his name was Sammy. Maybe he didn't want to be found. Ya think?

Ok, so that was like the second scariest moment of my life. I'll tell you about the absolute scariest moment of my life some other time.

The next day was Sunday, and we were invited to R's Aunt Drama and Uncle Ear Hair's house to swim. Aunt Drama is MIL's younger sister. She and FIL have an interesting history that I don't even fully understand, but apparently the animosity between them goes back many years. I think Aunt Drama is a hoot, but there's a reason why I chose the name Aunt Drama for her, just as there's a reason why I chose Uncle Ear Hair for her hubbypoo. Aunt Drama and FIL both talk shit about each other to me when the other's not there. I LOVE it. Aunt Huggie (MIL's other sister) and Uncle Prickly came to Aunt Drama's too, as did my favorites of R's cousins.

Aunt Drama gave me some detail on what the rest of the family thought of me when they first met me. You kinda have to appreciate that R and I, personality-wise, are polar opposites. R's sister and brother both married other introverts and so they and their spawn are all kinda on the shy tip. Then there's me and my Ape Squad.

The general consensus among the family, according to Aunt Drama, was that upon meeting me, they believed that I "would either make {R} or break him". And Aunt Drama said they all agree that I have really brought R out of his shell, and I am "the best thing that ever happened to R". Awwwww. She also said they love me because I don't take any of FIL's crap. I was so flattered that I've somehow managed to give them that impression.

Everybody hates FIL and loves me, the kids were good, the food was good, there was plenty of beer. Sunday was a really good day.

Monday R's best friend Mr. K was in town from Boston. He's a Major in the US Air Force, and he's single, gals! But you might have to fight Beebie for him, as I believe she has a lil bitty crush on Mr. K. We went to the Science Center (where we saw this unfortunate pubescent boy who looked like Harry Potter in a white Polo shirt and Pie went completely apesh*t) and to Cici's Pizza for lunch (have I ever blogged about the Macaroni and Cheese Pizza? It's fuggin AWESOME). Then R and Mr. K went out for grown-up beverages and R didn't get home until 3am. Beeb stayed up with me and watched Napoleon Dynamite. Dang! I can't get enough of that movie.

Yesterday, kids, was the Road Trip. We went to lunch in Sikeston, MO, at Lambert's Cafe, home of Throwed Rolls. Throwed Rolls means exactly what it sounds like. They literally throw hot rolls at you while you're at your table. It was somethin' else. We'd never been there before, and it certainly isn't the little hole-in-the-wall place I'd envisioned. It was HUGE.

I had the Chicken N' Dumplings. R had the Beef Sandwich with Mashed Potatoes and Gravy. It always seems that I like what he orders more than I like what I ordered. Why is that?? I've even tried asking him what he was thinking of having, then ordering it and forcing him to order something else. Still doesn't work. Guess we'll just have to go back. It was definitely worth the 2.5 hour drive.

L is for Lambert's -

M was going to be for Monkey's Eyebrow, Kentucky, but we drove through the town twice looking for a City Limits sign (or something to serve as proof that we did, in fact, spend part of our Independence Day Celebration in the thriving community of Monkey's Eyebrow, Kentucky) and there was nothing in the entire town that said the words Monkey's Eyebrow on it. Nothing.

I couldn't believe it! No "Welcome to Monkey's Eyebrow", no Monkey's Eyebrow Liquors, nuthin. Such a disappointment. Maybe it's a Luckenbach situation, where the signs kept getting ripped off so they quit putting them up. How could there not be at least a sign explaining why some idiot named the town Monkey's Eyebrow? Why not Monkey's Butthole? I mean, as long as you're coming up with the dumbest name you can think of? Makes just as little sense.

We left Sikeston and crossed the Ohio River to Illinois and then Kentucky (Tito called it "Tucky"), searched in vain for Monkey's Eyebrow, and then crossed back into Illinois at Metropolis.

So M is for...

METROPOLIS, Illinois! Notice the top of Clark Kent's phone booth to the right of the tree in the top photo.

You have now officially seen the entire town. You're welcome.

Which brings us to today. R had to go back to work, the boys went to Mom's Day Out, so it was just Me And Beebie McGee from 9 to 2. We went to Chris' Needle Craft Supply where I was assisted on my Lucy Bag by one of the owners. She was great. I bought some yarn to make Pie a hat (I have no idea why the boys always want me to make them hats) and a DVD so I could try to learn Continental.

I'm someone who has a real issue with mental blockage once I've learned to do something a certain way. For example, I have a huge mental block that prohibits me from learning to drive a manual transmission. I know. I am a HUGE dork. I'd love to learn, I just can't make my feet do two different things. For this reason, I've not been able to figure out how to make things with yarn and only one needle (e.g. crochet).

Next, Beeb and I went to Club Libby Lu at The Galleria. What a cool place! Beebie got The Princess Makeover (complete with tiara) and I got The Rocker (complete with pink hair streaks). We decided we'd like to go there again sometime. Still in our makeover makeup and hair, we went to lunch at Carl's Drive In and then to Pennie's Place for more yarn before picking up the boys.

We stopped by home and I got a PACKAGE! FROM JAPAN!!!!!

Fellow Mizzou Alum and all-around ubergroovy chick Rachele sent me a righteous package of laugh-out-loud-until-you-taste-it Kooky Japanese stuff. Beeb LOVED the Hello Kitty Macaroni. I loved the goofy "We Love Doughnut" stationery. I'll put up a pic for you guys tomorrow, since it thoroughly enhanced an already stellar day.

Domo, Rachele!

(Did I get that right? I totally just sang Mr. Roboto in my head to remember the word for Thank You in Japanese.)


Jennifer said...

I'm still chuckling of the "Jedi grafter" comment. You crack me up.

Glad you were able to have some fun!

JRS said...

"Domo" it is! Or "domo arigatou", which is also in that cheesy 80s song! (A very popular choice at karaoke for foreigners in Japan. Until you realize just how anti-Japanese the song is!) Anyway, I'm glad the package made it to you.

I am SO envious that you went to Lambert's. I *love* that place. I was so disappointed when they took down the billboards for it on I-70 b/t Columbia and STL--they were guaranteed to make me smile. I took my older nephew there when he was about 6 (7 years ago) and he still bugs me about when we're going back to the "flying bread" restaurant. Mmm...fried okra...

the kitchener bitch said...

too funny. Nice to hear your weekend story and glad you ended up with all Apes accounted for and intact.

You too will learn the way of the Kitchener Stitch, grasshopper. Just hang on there. (Not that I can three-needle-bind-off out of a wet paper sack.)

I think the "arigato" part of "Domo arigato" means thank you - I think "Domo" means "Very Much" or "Many." But then I thought that Dennis DeYoung was smokin' hot when I was 11. Go figure.

turtlegirl76 said...

You just have to do a couple cuff-down socks and then you'll have the Kitchner mastered! I don't even have to look at my reference books anymore. But were I to, I look in the Knitter's Companion. It's fab for cheating.

Sounds like you had a good weekend (if a bit heartstopping for a moment - glad you found him safe and sound - I did that when I was a kid and it freaked me out that I could be standing in line next to a man for so long thinking it was my Dad, then looking up to realize it was a complete stranger. It does make you freeze.)

Rachele is great! She sent me the cutest little turtle change purse. So thoughtful!

DomesticOverlord said...

Please tell me you have pictures of you and beeb after your makeovers. You know what would be awesome? A knitty meetup where we all went and did princess/rocker/whatever makeovers. Hey, I know! We could have a blog party where everyone makes themselves up and posts a picture! I have my own tiara...

Poops said...

If I lived closer to you, we would totally hang out, diss the relatives, and let our apes romp together in screamy goodness.

It would happen, I tell you.

xoxo Poops

Kevin said...

Warning, Japanese fanboy mode engaged...

Domo is a shorthand way of saying the (slightly) more formal Domo arigatou. If you want to go really formal, you can go with arigato gozaimashita.

Standing down from fanboy mode. Resume normal levels of geekiness.