So there we were, no longer in the cool north, but in the oh-so-pleasantly-warm south. We'd dressed warmly for the drive; the kids were both in warm pajamas, and I was in workout pants, a long-sleeve t, and a sweatshirt. Sorry, Abe, I don't remember what you were wearing, but I'm sure you looked awesome in it, whatever it was. Anyway, when we stepped out of the car and into 80-degree weather, it was a surprise. A lovely surprise. The kind of surprise you could really use when you're writing a recap of your trip and it's snowy and 30 degrees out, hypothetically speaking.
Another lovely surprise was seeing Steve and Katie's home, which we've never seen in person. But the best surprise of all was meeting a sweet little guy named Levi who was so excited to see us that he slept through all of the introductions. I will try not to hold it against him, since he is, in fact, but a month old, but I'm just saying, Levi: you're going to have a hard time remembering your favorite aunt and uncle and cousins if you're going to sleep through the actual meeting process, and also because you really have no capacity for memory yet. So there.
As I mentioned, it was not long before we all needed to crash. We all chose a soft spot to land, and snuggled in for a much-needed rest.
Hours later, Steve got home from work, and we re-lived the arrival excitement. I have not seen my brother and his wife since they visited us after Judah's birth 20-some months ago, so it was wonderful just to be in the same room with them. We speak most often via Nextel 2-way or IM, so it was a complete novelty not to have wait for the pauses in conversation. Though I did want to pepper my speech with "brb" and "lol" and "L8R"s.
It stands to reason that, since we haven't seen them in person in almost two years, they haven't seen us. Not such a big deal with Abe and me, because we mostly look the same; we've gained a few pounds, Abe shaved his head, and I acquired a nose ring, but everything else is the same. But the KIDS. They are very different. For one thing, Judah weighs more than 8 pounds. And Charis can actually pronounce the word "blanket." Steve and Katie say that they feel well caught-up on the kids' growth, but it's quite another thing to have a conversation with tiny people you mostly see in pictures.
So beyond becoming reacquainted with each other, there were no huge activities that first night. We may have played Catch Phrase, but then, we did that quite a few times during our visit, so maybe not. The next day was when the real excitement started: a visit to a playground leads directly to our first glimpse at the inside of an ambulance.
to be continued . . .