Saturday, July 18, 2009

May Medley Part 3: Ohio Travels

Finally! Let’s finish up May, okay? Then maybe I’ll feel free to post about my exciting life in July. : ) Oh, and James downloaded a really cool program that might make this blogging thing easier. Let’s hope so. This one is going to be picture crazy!

Grandma Carol and Clara on Clara’s very first airplane ride!

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So, the day after Mother’s Day, Mom Carol, Clara, and I flew to Ohio so that Clara could meet her Great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins (or more accurately, they could meet her). On the plane, someone had a medical emergency and they called for any doctor or EMT on the plane to make themselves known. We saw a man lying on the floor of the airplane and looked at each other thankful that it wasn't Mom (the man seemed to recover okay).

Clara was a joy on the plane. She slept in my arms, ate discretely when hungry, sucked contentedly on her pacifier during take offs and landings, and hardly let out a peep at any time. I was blessed to have an open seat beside me on the long flight to Minneapolis and only Mom next to me on the short leg to Columbus. All in all, a perfect trip. If Clara hadn't picked up the virus somewhere on the way, it would have been even better. Thankfully, she beat it quickly and we got on with our trip.

The two Clara’s getting to know each other.

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Papaw meets his first great-grandchild.

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Grandma and Papaw were thrilled with their first great-grandbaby. It got confusing as to which mother and grandmother we were referring to, but great-grandma just isn't a name you can use to call someone. Clara saw so many people! She saw two great-great aunts, one great-great uncle, five great aunts, six great uncles, at least 12 cousins, and many other long-time family friends. Mom loved it. She was so proud to show off her grandbaby at church or to whoever was around. Sometimes, I felt a little like the wet nurse, but at least every three hours, Clara and I got another snuggle in before other loving arms held, bounced, cuddled, and rocked her again.

The Walker Family meets Clara: cousin Hannah, Aunt Susan, cousin Able, cousin Samuel, and Uncle Archie

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Cousin Melissa came with her little boys to meet Clara too.

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Sunday services: Clara meets Grandma Carol’s kindergarten teacher . . .

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And one of our Daggett cousins (on Papaw’s side of the family).IMG_5668

Clara’s great-great uncle Bruce & Aunt Sally (Grandma’s Brother)

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When we weren't spending time with family, Mom and I were buying up Ohio! I guess I hadn't realized it before, but my mother is quite a bargain shopper. She had a long list of special stores she wanted to go to and ALL of them specialized in really great bargains. We went to Tuesday Mornings, Marshalls, Home Goods, TJ Maxx, Once Upon a Child, Half-priced Books, Big Lots, and even a fancy dollar store along with Good will, Ohio Thrift, and Ohio's Best Thrift Store. We also made a special trip to Whole Foods (my eyes about bugged out at such a massive organic food store), took a day long detour through Amish country (visiting special stores there too), and one mad dash trip through the mall to see some adorable baby boutiques!

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Truly, it was overwhelming: to have specialty stores within reasonable distance that sold just about everything we'd ever want, to go into thrift stores and find rows and rows off nice things priced for only a dollar or two, to find gorgeous antique furniture for the same price you'd find a cheap imitation version at Wal-Mart. Sometimes I'd just have to walk away and remind myself that I love my life in Alaska and do not neat stuff or cheap prices to make me happy. So, we went down with one reasonably weighted bag each and came back with one suitcase and a plastic bin each--loaded with 48 lbs of stuff per container! Plus we shipped two boxes! Phew! I came back with a new summer (nursable) wardrobe for me, a winter wardrobe for Clara, about 20 lbs of Amish cheese, a new stroller, a beautiful pink rosebud wreath to inspire my nursery decorating, a few books, several baby gifts, and a few little trinkets for James.

While in Ohio, we drove up to Sandusky/Castalia to see James' aunts and uncles. The three of us were greeted and made so welcome by the Limberious clan (Sally's brothers and sisters). They even threw a dinner in our honor. Aunt Sharon gave us a room for the night, and everyone showered us with kindness, appreciation, hospitality, and even baby gifts! It was so much fun. I got to meet James' cousin Sarah too, which was a treat.

Uncle Denny holds Clara, and Aunt Sharon shows off a delicious chocolate covered strawberry bouquet made in our honor.

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Aunt Jill and Aunt Sue cuddle with our girl—Sorry, Aunt Tanya, we missed out on a photo op. :(

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Grandma and great aunts admire Clara.

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The “uncles” table

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More of the family in Aunt Sharon’s lovely kitchen

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We also drove down to Parkersburg, WV to visit my great Aunt Helen and a few cousins. So Clara got to add another state to her experiences—and at only 3 months old!

Aunt Helen and Cousin Verna (plus our borrowed car seat—I do not miss it one bit!)

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Clara even got to take a traditional bath in Grandma’s Kitchen sink (where we accidentally scrubbed a bald patch in her hair—oops!).

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Three Generations

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However, the trip finally came to an end. It had been a lovely and blessed 11 days together, but Daddy was waiting at home for “his girls,” and it was time to go home to Alaska. Even though it was hard to say good-bye . . .

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We were soon waiting for a plane back home to Alaska and arrived safely and without problem hours later. God is good.

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So, THAT, my dear Readers, is what happened in May. Now, we resume with daily life again. : )

1 comment:

  1. what a great trip. . you were there in may? maybe i could have met up with you in IN while you were in OH. . . cuz you needed ONE More leg of your trip. i took alani from fiji to the US for 10 days when she was four months old, mike about died. . how did james live without his girls for 11 whole days? love all the photos with family. . . so fun and great memories to share with Clara later!

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