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The LDS temple in Nauvoo, Illinois

I’m back from four wonderful, fun and wacky days visiting Nauvoo, Carthage, Liberty and Lee’s Summit, four lovely cities in our nation’s heartland. The purpose of the trip was to attend the wedding of my beautiful niece Katie to her cutie-patootie sweetheart, Mike, in the Nauvoo temple. A four hour plane ride was between me and my destination and since our flight left at an unsightly hour (very few people are “sightly” so early in the morning) I begged a bed off of my sister who lives close to the airport . My husband, along with our three kids, drove me to her house but insisted on stopping to have dinner along the way to celebrate the fact that they weren’t going to see me for four days.

It was one of the nicest, tastiest meals I can remember having in a long time. We went to Olive Garden and, by gum, it was really top-notch! The waiter was efficient and personable and, as my daughter pointed out, had the good sense to be really attractive, as well. Everybody ate heartily, including my big guy who had more than his share of bread sticks, minestrone soup, raspberry lemonade and lasagna, a menu which will be important to remember later on.

We had one more thing to do before I was dropped off at my sister’s house—we had to give the big guy his medicine or the hour-long ride home would be nothing short of hell on earth for the others trapped in the car with a 260 pound manic bouncing ball. Normally we crush the medicine and put it in chocolate ice cream but when we are on the road, we use a McDonald’s chocolate sundae. We worry that he doesn’t get the full benefit of the meds when we do it that way, however, because it often melts before he finishes it all. So, my dear husband suggested we scoop a little of the sundae out into the lid and mix the medicine in that.

It was a near-fatal mistake. In light of the fact that one of my sisters both reads my blog and hates talk of bodily functions, let’s just say that the small amount of sundae did not compensate for the gag effect of the foul tasting meds and before we could talk him out of it, the big guy’s dinner, every single bite, was all over the interior of our mini-van. Needless to say, this put a pretty big pall over the celebration but it did make our imminent separation a bit less poignant for moi. After helping my husband clean up the van, I closed the door of my sister’s house with a sizable sigh of relief.

My father, my mother and one of my sisters trying to work things out.

Before I proceed, let me point out that I was traveling with my six witty sisters as well as my mother and father (both also witty). My brother, the youngest of 8 children (and witty, to boot. In fact I wish he would get a google ID and comment on my blog, that’s just how witty he is) chose not to go as he travels frequently for his job and took pity on his wife who is often left alone with their four children. At least, that’s the story. I think he was overwhelmed by the thought all that wit.

The first leg of the journey included my parents, three of my sisters, and myself. My eldest sister, as leader of this expedition, suggested we each only bring one bag to check and one carry-on. My parents, as the, er, parents of this expedition, thumbed their noses and brought five bags between them. The rest of us wondered what they could possibly need to fill five bags but the mystery deepened when my mother was stopped at security, her bag seized and searched. The rest of us were busy either re-lacing our shoes or wiping the gunk of the floor off our bare feet before replacing our slip-ons (which brings to mind another topic of conversation—which is better, sox and lace ups for comfort or slip-ons for speed and ease?) but our attention was soon claimed by the drama at security.

Apparently someone forgot to tell Mom that you can only carry-on 3 ounces of liquid. A large jar of cold cream and who knows what else is many more ounces than they can allow. I try not to imagine her humiliation at having all of her toiletries pulled from her bag and thoroughly investigated. One of my sisters, sister #2 (I feel it best to avoid names to protect the innocent as well as the guilty) joined my parents to see if she could do anything to help. In the end, she had to go back to check the bag, making it back to the gate with time to spare. Phew! Now we only had a four hour plane ride and a five hour car drive to reach our destination, a place we soon learned closes down and rolls up the sidewalks far too early in the day . . .

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 8, 2008 at Sunday, June 08, 2008 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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