Sunday, June 23, 2013

Headed Back to Arkansas

Well we did it.... we ALL survived 3 weeks in Canada... and I don't just mean the kids and I... I also mean Opa and Nina who let us take over/ invade their house.... and I quickly realized that having 3 small kids invade your home when you are not use to it can be A LOT... but there were good sports about it and we had a great time!!
I joked with them and mentioned something like.... this visit was probably good for you... it won't make you sad to see us leave... you'll be happy. throwing a party instead!! : )  Actually, after having us destroy their house (see how Ethan is into EVERYTHING) and running them ragged.... they will probably be sleeping and cleaning for a good 48 hours after we leave... no energy to party!! : )
I was sad to go but also ready to get back to "normal" in Arkansas, get back to our schedules, and get back to our social life.... and while I was ready to get back to "normal" I was SO happy to have so many wonderful memories to look back on and was so glad we are headed to Saudi with strong relationships between my kids and my family.... before this trip Ethan was a little more reserved around Opa and Nina... and the rest of the family... but not anymore!!!  I think Opa and Nonnie (Nina) are some of his favorite people!!!!
After our trip to Canada 3 weeks ago, I was prepared for this trip!  I knew we could do it... we had already tested the waters and this time Ethan is a bit older (seems like even being weeks older makes sure a different in young kids) so I knew we'd be fine.  The airport is SO close to my parents house and we don't go through Customs here so we waited until about an hour before our flight to get there... once there we found out we had an hour delay so we headed to the little airport cafe for drinks... headed back to check in.... to find out we had another hour delay.... then another hour..... UGH.... there was bad weather in Chicago that was delaying everything... I just prayed our connecting flight was delayed too so I didn't end up missing it and having to stay the night in Chicago airport with 3 kids!!
 After a couple of hours worth of delays in a tiny airport, the kids were going a bit stir crazy!!  Thankfully there were not many people in the airport so I tried not to worry too much.  Look at the bright side, they were burning up their energy now so they'd be good and tired for the airplane!
 The kids did great entertaining themselves!!!  They look out the window at airplanes, played hide-n-seek with out kids at the airport, and turned their suitcases into fun riding toys!!!
 I love how Owen had a girl pulling him around!!!  After a couple of hours of play time, these kids formed a nice bond.  There were many goodbyes between them when it was finally time for us to go (they were not going, they were dropping someone off).
Things got a little crazy at the end, we weren't sure how long our flight would be delayed so we went back to the cafe for dinner.. we were told that when we see our plane land we should head over.... about 10 minutes after ordering and before we got our food.... our plane landed... go figure!!!  We had to quickly get ours to go, say our goodbyes to Nina (who had to stay and wait for their food), and then dad quickly walked us over... I had so many bags of luggage and food, I must have been a sight to see.... thankfully it is a small airport and not far to go... after going through security I realized I had left my backpack somewhere.... you MUST be kidding me.... so security went to find it... and after 10 minutes they did... WHEW!!!  Just in time to board the plane!!!
Landing in Chicago was a MESS... but I was SO thankful we didn't check bags.... although many thought I was crazy for not checking bags, it would have caused us to miss our flight in Chicago..due to ALL of the delays, seems like everyone landed at the same time and it was a MESS!!!!  I kept asking to go to front of lines because I had 3 kids by myself and I had the boot on and we were allowed to every time.... another blessing.... we ended up making it to our gate with literally 5 minutes to spare!!  Whew!!!  Our flight was 2 hours late..... we didn't land until 11:30... and the kids didn't fall asleep on either flight until 5 minutes before landing in Arkansas.... I can't believe they held out THAT long!!!  After a long day, we made it safely in our beds at midnight.... what a day!  Glad that we all made it and the kids did great!  I have a feeling I'm going to spend the next couple of days trying to recover from all of this!!! : )

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