Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Final Thoughts Month of August: Blog 3- Letters from Mom & Mimi

Good Morning Ellie,

I am writing this blog a week and a half before it is due.  Actually I am writing it while traveling home from Green Bay.  I am not sure what my “Final Thought” is yet, but I do know that I must share with you the final journey of our Green Bay trip.  What a fun and crazy time it was and a memory worth cherishing!

Final Thought:  ?

Ellie, Poppy flew in late on Thursday, which was perfect as it gave us the whole of Friday to pack in another full day… which of course we did!  We started off with a trip to the Green Bay NEW Zoo.  What an awesome place for all age groups to visit!  They have a children’s section filled with goats, llama’s, chicken’s and of course a playground.  You and Will fed the animals in pure childlike delight.  A Zip-line and Climbing Walls were also on premise, but I don’t think we will attempt them for a few years yet.  They also house giraffes and a special feeding time for little ones like yourself to actually hold a leaf plant and let the giraffe take it from your hand!  Only here you and Will opted to let Poppy and I hold the plant… I think it was because you saw how long its tongue was and didn’t want to tempt fate (getting eaten yourself!). 

The rest of the walk within the zoo was through lush vegetation where we saw lions, prairie dogs, a moose, penguins, bear and of course a carousel and train!  You being the grown-up girl you are, found the perfect carousel animal to ride.  Will on the other hand might have thought they were real as he held on to Poppy for dear life and cried the whole way around!  

The train ride was much more Will’s speed but you were not receptive at all when it came to taking pictures!  Ughhhh… getting you two on board so to speak at the same time takes great ingenuity!  

Anyway on the way out, you politely asked Poppy if he would buy you something from the gift shop.  Knowing that you still had it in the back of your mind that you were determined to purchase a gargantuan Packer fan cheesehead, I clearly told you that you could only get one thing.  You had to choose either one gift item from the Zoo or the cheesehead… not both.  So of course you smiled sweetly with those baby blues of yours and handed Poppy a stuffed giraffe! 

And I should have known better because later in the day Poppy made a special trip to the Packer Pro Shop and, yes, got you a cheesehead too!  When Poppy handed you the bag with the triangular shape inside, you got so excited.  

And I think with that twinkle in your eye and broad smile you knew all along that Poppy would come through for you!  We grandparents can be such pushovers… well, more like Poppy can!  Anyway, Friday evening Gram Bubbles treated the whole family to a fish dinner.  Now Ellie, you might be thinking, “what’s the big deal about a fish dinner?” and I will tell you, “everything!”  Friday night fish dinners in Wisconsin, (fried perch plates), are as common as brushing your teeth daily.  Since the restaurants where we live don’t host any such thing, I make sure that when I go ‘home’ a fish dinner is a must.  I will also tell you that you totally turned your nose up to such a yummy meal and opted for a grilled cheese sandwich and french-fries instead… nibbling only on the french-fries.  At some point in your life I do hope you broaden your taste-bud horizons!  But on to Friday night which also proved a bit interesting as the air mattress that you and your mommy were soundly sleeping on popped and deflated almost immediately.  Your Mommy, who was so tired, just got up and moved into Gram Bubbles bed while you never budged and slept peacefully on the floor till the next morning!   Oh to be young and not worry about stiff muscles and sore bones! 

Anyway, we are now on to Saturday, which was Stephanie’s wedding day.  And it was a beautiful one at that!  Well, except for the mini melt down you had when you decided that you no longer liked the silver shoes you chose to wear as the flower girl!  As hard as it was to ignore you, it honestly was the best medicine because when it came time for you to ‘walk’ the flower girl walk… there was no problem.  Or it could have been because your cousin Cody had plopped you up on his shoulders as soon as you arrived which seemed to help ease your shyness.  

No matter, you and Barrett sprinkled colorful pedals the whole way down the path while Brandon carried a small chalkboard hosting the words “Here Comes Your Girl” as he followed you two!  Since Stephanie is Aunt Sheri’s free-spirited child she was very true to herself and held the wedding ceremony at their cabin in the woods, which holds personal history for her.  The deep greens of the forest, the purple, turquoise, and black themed attendants attire, the beautiful bouquets that Aunt Sheri made herself, and the arbor that both your Uncle Jim and Aunt Sheri handcrafted couldn’t have been more fitting.  And you, Barrett and Brandon were the icing on the cake, so to speak, as flower girls and ring bearer!  And of course your cousin Stephanie made an absolutely gorgeous bride along with her husband, Mark, who was equally handsome in groom camo attire.  

Of course there was a quick photo shoot of the wedding party, which surprisingly you not only looked dead-on into the camera lens but actually smiled too!  Go figure.  But as soon as the photographer was done, it didn’t take long for you to don the flower girl dress and put on your comfy old shorts and stained pink T-shirt!  (And you did this El before we even left the cabin for the reception!)  Thank goodness Stephanie did not mind, as all she wanted was for everyone to be happy and have a great time.  And once you found the volleyball sandpits on the side of the building that hosted the reception, that is exactly what you did… have a great time that is! 

Sadly Aunt Phyllis who flew in from Philadelphia for the wedding fell ill for most of the trip and was not able to join in the festivities.  That is until the following day, Sunday, when Aunt Sheri hosted a gift-opening/pool party for the happy couple and family.  While we watched the lovely presents being opened and filled our bellies with the delicious leftovers, you and all your cousins got water-logged and shriveled fingers from playing, splashing and jumping in the pool.  Again… another fun day to remember! 

Now we come to Monday which was the day that you, Will, your Mommy and Poppy had to return home to State College.  I think your Daddy, who was unable to make the trip, was missing you all very much.  Anyway, your flight was in the latter part of the morning and since you are not much of a morning person we let you sleep for as long as we could before awaking you.  Your Mommy moved you from the bed to the couch where you could watch cartoons while I fixed you some pancakes for breakfast (just so you know, Will was awake, dressed, fed and happy way before this time frame!).  Anyway, here is the funny part of the morning’s story.  Knowing that you can be a little bit of a grump-a-lump, I set your breakfast plate down on the side of the kitchen table where Aunt Phyllis was also sitting.  I did this so that you could still see the TV.  When I called you into the kitchen, you quietly walked in and took a look at your plate, then Aunt Phyllis and then your plate again.  And without saying a word, you slid your plate clear across to the other side of the table before seating yourself to eat your pancakes.  Aunt Phyllis watched you and your antics before stating, “Hmpf!  Good thing I don’t get my feelings hurt easily!”  Ellie I busted up laughing because that is sooooooooooo you!

Anyway, I took you all to the airport, kissed you all good-buy and returned to Gram’s house where I stayed on for a few extra days to visit with my high-school girlfriends, who always bring me much laughter and a gratefulness to our long-lasting friendship as well as spending some quieter time with my Mom (Gram Bubbles), Aunt Phyllis, Aunt Sheri, Uncle Stevie and Aunt Dawn.  Playing UpWords, having a delicious homemade dinner on Aunt Dawn’s patio with a glass of wine, and ice cream with Aunt Sheri was for me the perfect ending to a ‘never-enough-time’ trip home.  Your Gram Bubbles should be ranked as one of the best hostess’ of all time!  How the chaos and craziness of the week did not put her over the edge is beyond me… I guess Gram B. loves us El… with her whole heart she unconditionally loves us!  And for as much fun as you had with all of your cousins, I think you would agree with me that next years trip to Green Bay won’t come soon enough!

See you soon my little Travel Companion!

Love Mimi

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