Thursday, August 24, 2006

Home again, Home again, Jiggity Jog

We're home, alive and in one piece, and perhaps a little more rested. I had this great idea that my 'after-trip' blog post would be some ridiculously dreamy version of our wonderfully magical holiday....but now that I have PMS....I'm gonna give it to y'all straight up.

It all began with the border crossing to the ...duh duh duh (think drama...)
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA..., the hubs was quite nervous and I was beginning to think he was hiding some fresh fruit and vegetables, or perhaps some small fuzzy wildlife in our suitcase. Several times I had to tell him to breathe and remind him that he was not on trial, but rather travelling with 2 children and his wife to Frankenmuth, Michigan, to spend a night on holidays and that we be be returning tomorrow. His nervousness was consuming him and I thought he would blurt out: 'My 2 wives and child are going to Frankenstein and we'll be spending the night ...tomorrow and returning today (with lots of fruits and vegetables and little fuzzy wildlife)'.
But the wait was long enough for him to finally regain his composure, until I told him I was going to ask the border official how long ago 'September 11' was ...2 years or 5 years ....he told me to "keep quiet ..and TAKE those sunglasses off, you look suspicious..." Welllll then...happy holidays to you too Mister merry pants.
Turns out we were only at the toll booth.

The border man was a large southern gentleman who was very kind and let us weirdos through without any delay....ahhhhh, Dwight was back his usual self.

We got our mapquest map out and took the I-69 as directed .....or did we? I decided to snuggle down for a nap as this portion of the trip was the longest stretch and after the first few Big Boy's, Bob Evans and Applebees', the thrill of being in a different country wore off. So there we were cruising down the interstate at a good clip and we'd driven for about an hour when I awoke and found that we were nowhere I'd been before. I looked at Dwight and asked him where we were and he said we hadn't yet reached the turn off. Wow this IS the long stretch.

Well as you are imagining already ...we had indeed gone about an hour into the heart of Michigan when we really should have headed to Northern Michigan. The kids were still asleep and The hubs decided to pull into a bp gas station (I thought bp stood for Blood Pressure.....and man, mine was elevating). A couple of Truckers going into the store, stopped Dwight when they knew he was looking for directions and said "Well, What the Heck are Ya's Doin Waaay out Here???" mmm hhmmm. Thanks. Rub it in.

Then they told Dwight that there was a Black convention in Frankenmuth right now and we were gonna stick out like a sore thumb. Then he slapped Dwight on the shoulder with a big " I'm just kiddin' with ya man!!!" Ooookay then.Bu-bye.

We were on our way the Right way and it only took us an hour and a half MORE to get there.....arrrgg. Once we arrived everything was great....people were very friendly, place was big and clean and food was Dee-licious.

This was our room at the Bavarian Inn and as you can see the kids and the hubs would have been content to stay in the room all night and forget the rest, but with enough persistance I was able to get them up and going to the beautiful town of Frankenmuth.

It's very scenic there and the gardens were in full bloom. There are so many quaint shops to spend hours (and lots of money) in. We mozied around for a while and went in and out of a majority of the town's offerings. We settled on Zehnders World Famous Chicken dinner for our eats and enjoyed a family style spread with 4 salads, soup, bread, german buttered noodles, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, gravy and of course southern Fried Chicken. It was SO delectable. Why oh why we thought it would be a good idea to bring the leftovers "home" I still can't figure out.....but alas...we did. and they ended up in the bin at the Wheels Inn anyway....
Frankenmuth also offers horse drawn carriage rides, which we didn't do, mainly because I could just picture Ashlyn reaching over and yanking on some of the horsies tail hairs and us going for a bucking and then being barred from ever returning to the town. We did get to pet the sweet horses though.

The next day we were off to Bronners - Woo Hoo! this is the Christmas store that is open 364 days of the year and is equivalent to 7 football fields of decorations, trees, lights, nativity scenes and everything Christmas.
As we strolled through the aisles, it was just overwhleming for Gabriel. So cute, he saw 100's of santas and the lights were so brilliant! Even Ashlyn woke up wide - eyed when we entered the building. This is one of about 20 large nativity scenes.. This next picture is of ashlyn and the singing reindeer. She was so intrigued by him.

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