Last week we traveled back home to Indiana to attend my brother-in-law's wedding. Both Kyle and Hannah were in the wedding-Kyle as the best man and Hannah as the flower girl. I was nervous about this trip for several reasons. First, we were driving. It's a long drive, at least 9 hours, and we intended to drive straight through overnight leaving as soon as Hannah got out of school. Second, it was a Catholic ceremony which meant it would be LONG and Hannah would need to participate the entire time. Third, there would be late nights and long days with no predictable schedule. Fourth, we were driving home the very next day after the wedding on little sleep and with impending sugar high crashes.
I should not have worried. Hannah did brilliantly in all aspects of the trip. She rocked the ceremony, the reception, and both the drives out and back. I was SO PROUD of her. Never in a million years would I have expected our trip to go as smoothly as it did. It truly was amazing. AND since it was so amazing I'm going to regale you all with the play by play of the ENTIRE weekend. Feel free to simply skip all the words and just look at the pictures!
Thursday I picked Hannah up from school and while walking home she crashed face first into the sidewalk and got some pretty spectacular looking scrapes-two on her arms, one on her leg, and one on her nose. Just what we needed two days before having to wear a white dress for the wedding. We eventually made it home and then waited for Kyle to get home from work so we could leave. We hit the road at around 5:00pm which was a little later than we expected, but not too horribly bad. The plan was to drive straight through to Indiana and arrive at the hotel around 3:00am. Well, that didn't happen. We hit some horrible fog that slowed us down dramatically and made Kyle super sleepy. We pulled off at a rest stop and took a little nap to perk ourselves up. While Kyle and I slept for an hour and a half Hannah sat quietly and read! I could not believe it. She won't even let us sleep in on the weekends! She really behaved brilliantly on the trip and we rolled into the hotel at 6:00am local time on Friday morning. Oh, and I almost forgot, we also found out on the drive that Hannah was about to lose a tooth and it was bleeding. Another thing involving blood that we did not need paired with a white dress!
Upon arriving we found that the hotel had given away our room because we did not check in at the appropriate time. I was about to panic since we were pretty much dead on our feet, but the lady at the front desk worked her magic and found us a room that we could have for our entire stay and didn't even charge us for the night we missed or for early check in. I think they must have felt sorry for us because we looked terrible. Once up in the room Kyle and I crashed and slept until 11:00 while Hannah happily watched cartoons. That kid had probably 5 or 6 hours sleep total and she didn't even nap! We then headed out for lunch and errands before the rehearsal. While waiting at the church for the rehearsal to start Hannah happily ran around the sanctuary and played in the holy water of the baptismal. Try as I might I COULD NOT keep her out of that darn water. It became the bane of my existence. After rehearsal we headed to the rehearsal dinner where Hannah got a little wild, but managed to hold it together mostly. At this point it was 9pm and she'd been up since who knows when. She crashed so hard on the way back to the hotel that I was able to get her out of the car, carry/drag her up to the room and take off her clothes and drop her in bed all without her waking up. I haven't been able to manhandle her like that while she was asleep since she was a toddler.
Saturday morning we slept in a bit and then got up and went swimming at the pool. Hannah had a blast and made friends with another little girl who was swimming that was also adopted. While the girls played, I enjoyed chatting with her mama about adoption. After swimming we headed out to get lunch and take it to the church. There we ate and got all gussied up for the wedding. Hannah LOVED being in her dress and holding her basket of flowers. At one point there was a minor crises where she began picking some of her scabs and made herself bleed, but the blood was kept off the white dress thank heavens. And of course there was that darn holy water I had to keep her out of only this time not only was she splashing in it, but she was also dropping flower petals into it! During the ceremony I left her in the charge of one of the bridesmaids and took my seat. She handled the ceremony like a pro and even managed to get a little chuckle out of the audience when she flashed everyone the thumbs up sign as she took her place at the front of the church. It was quite cute watching her sashe down the aisle acting like she owned the place. All eyes were on her and she was in heaven. She managed to stay mostly still and quiet the entire ceremony and stand up and sit down with the rest of the girls at all the appropriate times. I was quite proud of her.
At the reception she was the life of the party. She charmed every person that would look her way. She skillfully made her rounds to all the tables collecting the beanie baby dogs the bride and groom had at each seat for guest favors. She managed to charm her way into the possession of six of those dogs! It was pretty amazing to watch her work. There was a chocolate fountain for dipping fruit and other deserts in and Hannah was in heaven. I'm not sure how it was possible, but from the several gallons of melted chocolate she consumed, only two tiny drops of it manage to make their way onto her dress. Once the dancing began Hannah launched herself onto the floor and danced every single song she was there for. She danced alone or with anyone who would dance with her. She had quite the audience. While at the reception I received several compliments on what a wonderful little girl I had and how she behaved just like a mini adult. If they only knew!
Around 9pm I took Hannah back to the hotel and met up with her birthmom and siblings to swim again. The kids had a blast swimming for about an hour and a half and then we headed back up to our room for some snacks and visiting. We ended up visiting until 1:00am! Hannah was BEAT, but I was so thankful for the opportunity to spend some unexpected time with Tiffany and the twins. Now that we are so far away we have to make the most of every opportunity we get.
Sunday morning we were loaded up and on the road by 10:00am and this time we did manage to drive straight through and got home at about 8:00pm. On the drive home Hannah read an entire chapter book to herself in one sitting, colored about a million pictures, and quietly watched a few movies. She dealt with the boredom like a champ. Really the whole trip she handled like a champ. I couldn't have been happier.