Saturday, July 24, 2010

Texas Trip

Charlie and I got back from Texas late Tuesday night. Brad, of course, got back yesterday (Friday). It was a successful flight home, even though I realized right after take off I didn't charge the portable DVD player correctly. That was a tad sickening. Charlie was looking at me like what's the hold up? Let's watch us some Yo Gabba Gabba! Or as my mom called it, Yo Baby Baby.

But he was so good on the flight - I couldn't have asked for more from him. We played and talked and then chatted with quite a few people on the way to and from the bathroom. I figured out how to rig the CARES harness a bit tighter and Charlie seemed more comfortable in it on the return trip, even though he never did fall asleep. I might rent it again if we fly around the holidays.

We were in Texas for about 2 weeks and it was a really fun trip. Charlie had a blast with my parents. My mom taught him lots of new words, downloaded him a bunch of music, danced with him and let him swim in her garden tub about 3 times a day.

He also ate a bunch of yummy food, including spaghetti and meatballs, which is a new favorite. And pancakes. Lots and lots of pancakes. All eaten, of course, with grown up forks and spoons. Don't hand Charlie a baby spoon or fork unless you want it flung back at you. I find it hilarious that he has to have grown up utensils but also insists on drinking milk only from bottles. At what age do babies start appreciating irony?

My mom also let Charlie play with her cell phone quite a bit while we were there. Imagine her surprise when he downloaded Katy Perry's California Gurls and set it as the song you hear instead of the phone ringing. At just $2.50 for 3 months, Charlie must have found it to be a real bargain. We couldn't figure out how he did or how to get it off, so it will stay. Give my mom a call if you'd like to hear it.

Our first order of business when we got there was to get Charlie's hair cut so he wouldn't be the ragamuffin nephew at Aunt Megan and Uncle Bruce's engagement party. We found a salon that had DVD players at each station and took the Yo Gabba Gabba DVD with us for Charlie to watch. Worked like a charm! However, my baby was replaced with a little boy and I'm still not sure how I feel about that. Here's the before and after:
Why yes, that thing on his face is a smile. During a hair cut! I was shocked as well.

I managed to squeeze in seeing a few friends while I was there, though I never can fit in as many as I want. Between working, seeing my family and trying to spend time with Brad, there just wasn't a lot of spare time. But I met up with some people I hadn't seen in quite a while for lunch or dinner. Always over food. By the time I flew home, I was SICK of eating! Poor me and all the yummy food I had to eat. I also got to hear some exciting pregnancy news from a couple of people. :)

Last Saturday I got to go with my sister Megan and my mom to buy Megan's wedding dress at this cute little boutique, Stella, in Plano. Megan already had it picked out so I got to see it in person and help her pick out a veil and discuss other accessories. It was so much fun. She made an awesome choice on the veil - it just took the dress to a very sophisticated level when she had it on. I wish I could post pictures of it, but alas, we must wait until April!

I tried on some bridesmaid dresses at the salon but there wasn't really anything any of us loved. Megan's considering a knee-length, one-shouldered look, which I think will be gorgeous. Now we just have to find it! I've been scouring the internet but no luck yet. I think we may look some when we're in NYC for Meredith's 30th birthday later this month.

That night, Brad and I got to have another overnight date while my parents very generously watched Charlie for the night again. It was really fun. We stayed at Hotel Zaza downtown, which is where you will find Brad most nights of the week right now. Because he's there so often they gave us an awesome themed suite - West Indies - that had a balcony. We had drinks at Nobu and dinner at my old favorite, Trulucks. Wedge salad, stone crab and their famous chocolate cake. Heaven!

After dinner, we hung out in our room on the balcony some, watching all the action down below at Urban Oasis, which is the loung around the ZaZa pool. It was a spectacle. Being away from Dallas for so long, I forgot how very Dallas it is there. Everyone is dressed up and blinged out everywhere you go.

I remember moving from Dallas to DC and feeling completely overdressed the first 6 months when we'd go out. Now that I'm all East coast acclimated, I'm pretty sure I was underdressed everywhere I went in Dallas. Need to remember to pack my A game next time. I suppose when the only walking you need to concern yourself with is tottering from the valet stand to your seat, heel height is really no object.

Anyways, we had a great time and even had breakfast delivered to our room the next morning. I got to actually sit down and read the newspaper. For a single day, I was caught up on current events. Now I'm back to saying things like "Wait - there's a tropical storm going on?".

Sunday after we got back to McKinney, I got to see my childhood friends Julie and Lindsay and their little baby girls who are both a few months younger then Charlie. Lindsay just moved back from Shanghai after 5 years there and I don't think I'd seen her since my wedding, almost 8 years ago. We took the babies to the pool at our friends, the McAnally's, house, and had a great time. My dad made some awesome enchiladas and we killed some of the leftover alcohol from Megan's engagement party last weekend.
Monday, our last full day there, my parents took Charlie to eat at the Original Pancake House and then over to the playground at one of the malls. I had never really considered outings to mall playgrounds before, but it's really such genius given the heat.

At the Pancake House, they deliver little pancakes to the table immediately when there are kids sitting there. They call the Baby Cakes. Really cute idea - take note IHOP. Charlie ate his weight in baby cakes, worked off the sugar on the slides at the playground and they all had a great time.
That night my parents took us to downtown McKinney for a celebratory final dinner at Sauce. Downtown McKinney is very cute - lots of little shops and restaurants, some older restored homes nearby. Kind of a historic town square. The food was delicious and the server was very nice about Charlie going completely crazy and getting food everywhere.

By the time we got home, both my parents looked exhausted! Charlie does tend to have that effect on people. As a result, Tuesday we just took it easy until it was time to leave for the airport.

It's always hard to leave after we visit and fortunately we have a weekend in NYC to look forward to in just a few weeks. But I was sad to go. I know it was hard for my mom too, when she got home and the house was so quiet after two weeks of Charlie chatter.

Thank you Mom and Dad for an awesome visit!!

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