So we swung back by the house to pick up Cooper, and then we hit the road.
Coco dozed off right away, but Zuzu chattered to me excitedly for an hour as she ate her snacks on our way out of town. She was very cute pointing out things she saw--especially when we got outside the city and she would exclaim, "I see cows! And I think there's a donkey in the barn!"
I mostly listened to podcasts on our way, but when we'd turned off highway 44 and got back in the twisty-turny roads, the ominous clouds got closer and closer, and I turned on local (country) radio to make sure we weren't in a storm warning. Coco started fussing and Zuzu woke up (I think maybe she was having a bad dream, because she seemed to startle awake and was disoriented for a moment) so I decided it was a good point for a bathroom break.
I pulled into a gas station in a small town and made Cooper wait in the car. I had underestimated how exciting the gas station would be for Zuzu--I'm not sure she'd really been inside one before, and the candy aisle was absolutely thrilling. I told her she could pick a treat if she peed on the big potty and she totally managed. She ended up choosing a 50-cent "lully-pop" and was quite delighted with her choice.
While we were inside, the sky opened up and it was POURING. This was most unfortunate, as I'd left the window cracked for Cooper. We waited it out in the gas station for a bit because the rain was just drenching people who were running inside. After a while it hadn't let up much, but I was getting antsy (although Coco was happily flirting with truck drivers, and Zuzu was busy asking me what every type of candy was, so the girls could have stayed there all day). By the time I made it back to the car, the driver's side was completely soaked. Fortunately, there was a beach towel in the front seat from visiting the fountain that morning, so I was able to dry off the seat (and myself, since I was more than a little damp after buckling the girls in their car seats).
We drove in rain on and off for the last hour of the trip, but nothing too terrible. Zuzu at one point said, "Thank you, Mommy, for driving me to Grammy and Bop's house." It was so sweet how excited she was to see them.
We got there in time for dinner, and walked down to see the Bushwhacker Days carnival (we also made this road trip last year).
Zuzu and Grammy rode the hot air balloon ferris wheel, which Zuzu enjoyed enormously.
She's not quite 36" tall, so most rides were off limits and the lines were long enough (and the crowds undesirable enough) that we decided to just do the one ride and then let her do the fishing game she was so excited about.
She loved using the fishing pole, and we let her select her prize without any guidance, which ended up being a huge mistake, at least in Coco's opinion.
My stomach was bothering me (not sure why--dinner didn't settle well) so we made a quick loop around the square but I wasn't feel well and could barely speak when we saw people we knew. So we headed home.
On Sunday we went to my parents' church and the girls wore these adorable matching dresses that I could not resist when I saw them for half price on the Target clearance rack.
They did pretty well for much of the service, but Coco wouldn't nap at her scheduled time and Zuzu got antsy, so before the service ended, I'd hauled them both to the nursery where they were entertained by two delightful high school girls and one high school guy.
We attended the reception afterward for the pastor who is moving on to another church. She baptized Zuzu, so it was nice that we got to be there for her going away party. Zuzu was delighted by the vase filler marbles that were sprinkled on the table for decoration ("Mommy! Look at the treasure!") but the reception hit a real low point for her (and all of us within ear shot, really) when I committed the sin of cutting her meatball into pieces rather than letting her eat it whole. I mean, HOW DARE I?
Sunday afternoon my mom and I took the girls to Wal-Mart (because no visit to Nevada is complete without a trip to Wal-Mart) and picked up an inflatable kiddie pool so the girls could "swim." I also picked up some adorable hair bows for $1 each, so if you're looking for bows and you can stomach Wal-Mart's politics, check out the little girls' section (for the record, I'm not a fan, but the nearest alternative big box store is an hour from here).
We got the kiddie pool set up, but Coco was having no part of the freezing cold water, so really we all just watched Zuzu splash to her heart's delight in the icy hose water. And we watched Coco eat watermelon.
Monday morning Ellie Kate came to play. (Ellie Kate is the first baby I held after losing Eliza. She has a very special place in my heart.) I pushed the girls in the stroller to a nearby playground and had so much fun just listening to the girls talk to each other and play together. Ellie Kate was cracking me up wanting to take care of Zuzu. She's all of six months older, though she is much taller, and when I ran out to the car to get something, my mom overheard EK say, "Don't worry Zuzu, I can watch you while your mommy is gone. I'm an adult."
Ellie Kate later informed me that, now that she's an adult, her mom lets her drink champagne. I sincerely hope she shares that news with the congregation at the church where her mother is a pastor.
Ellie Kate also liked hugs and told me she misses me "so much" so my heart was just melting. I wish we lived closer!
The girls had a blast climbing and sliding and splashing in mud puddles.
Zuzu's dress and Ellie Kate's shorts were completely drenched by the time we left. Then Zuzu was playing in the puddle while Ellie Kate was back up on the equipment, and Ellie Kate called out, "Zuzu, I see a snake on you!"
That got my attention, although I figured maybe Zuzu had kicked up an earthworm.
But Zuzu came UNGLUED. I've honestly never heard her scream quite like that. She came running over to me, crying and shrieking about snakes, and it took some doing to convince her that she didn't have snakes in her shoes or on her legs. She clung to me, screeching and shaking her head as I insisted she was snake-free.
Ellie Kate came over and explained she was just pretending: "It was in my imagination, Zuzu!" But Zuzu really couldn't recover. She might be fearless about climbing and exploring, but creepy-crawlies (insects and reptiles) do her in.
It is possible this is a hereditary issue--I'm not bothered so much by insects (I can even handle spiders pretty well), but I saw a possum on my parents' deck Sunday night and I screamed my head off as Cooper charged it (it brought back so many memories), and then right after that, I was somehow convinced that I'd felt a slug ON MY THIGH, even though there was no evidence of slug presence on me, and I had to take a shower before I stopped feeling totally icky.
The weather has been gray and rainy off and on the whole time we've been here, so we've just tried to fit in outdoor time whenever we can. Last night after dinner, we walked up to the square and got caught in a rain shower on our way home. The girls were covered in the stroller but my mom and I got a little damp.
Today we took the girls to the library and then out to lunch. Zuzu forgot her restaurant manners and when I grabbed her just before she ran back into the employees-only section of the restaurant, I said, "What are you doing?" and she said, "I'm Captain Hook!"
It was clearly time for Captain Hook to go home.
Cooper had a vet appointment today, which he handled like a
We left Coco at home with my mom to nap, but Coco REFUSED to nap today. I kid you not--she slept for maybe 10 minutes when we walked home from lunch and 10 minutes when we drove around this afternoon. She had a bottom tooth pop through last week, but I think her gums are still bothering her. She was totally unlike herself today--fussy, wanting to nurse constantly, but still arching her back and fussing sometimes while nursing, and having lots of loose and gross poops. I hope she pops another tooth through soon because she wore me out today.
Zuzu fell asleep on the way home from the vet (we took the long way home) and she had a nice nap this afternoon, so we didn't feel too bad about leaving them with my dad while my mom and I went to yoga.
It was an hour well spent, and reminded me that I really do benefit from taking classes. I'm promising myself right now that as soon as Coco weans (or is only nursing in the morning and at bedtime), I'm going to start going once a week.
The girls were pretty good for him, except Coco only slept for 10 minutes. I'm just completely astonished that she skipped napping ALL DAY. She's usually so easy and predictable!
Because we're crazy, we decided that we'd go ahead and take the girls out to dinner at the new Italian restaurant in town. I really thought that Coco would doze off in the car, but the thing about a small town is that the car ride to the restaurant was literally like 3 minutes. So Coco was still awake when we got there, and NOT content to sit in her carseat (on a normal day, she will often chill in her carseat without complaint). Zuzu didn't want to sit still in the booth either. We're working on her table manners, so I make her ask when she wants to be excused. Tonight, she asked to be excused before we had even ordered our food.
So I made the executive decision to change our order to carryout, and my dad waited on our food while my mom and I went home with the girls.
Coco finally fell asleep at 8:30 pm but was fussing by 9 pm (BAH HUMBUG) so I'm already bracing myself for being up all night.
Overall, we are having a blast at Grammy and Bop's house, but we are missing David. We're hanging out here all day tomorrow and then heading home on Thursday to make it back for Zuzu's swimming lesson. I'm feeling really fortunate to have the summer off (my class ended on Friday so I don't go back until mid-August) and to be able to spend a few days here. I love watching the girls have fun with my parents, even though the adjustment back to real life might be a little challenging. I'm hoping we have enough sunshine here tomorrow to go to the swimming pool!