Sunday, June 28, 2015

Girls camp and Chris drives cross country by himself with the kids

Well, the U.S. Opened ended on a Sunday and around 4:30 the next morning we were driving to UT to pick up our boys. Ohhhh, I missed them, and they missed Freddy. The few times I spoke with them during the whole time we were gone they would always ask, "Can I say Hi to Freddy?"  Here's the younger two on the drive out to UT: 


Then around 5:30 the next morning, I was off to the airport to fly to MS by myself. I kept feeling like I was forgetting something with only my bag and purse to care about. Then I had a few hours to unpack, do any laundry I needed and repack for girls camp and finish my presentation. I got 3 hours of sleep before needing to wake up to meet the girls and the YW president from my Branch so we could carpool up to girls camp! Chris had our van with the kids, so I was driving the little '95 Honda Accord with no air conditioning and a nonfunctional drivers-side window. About 2 and a half hours into the drive  I felt and heard a CLANK BANG CLANK right under my feet. Then two seconds later the exact same thing. CLANK BANG CLANK. After that the car seemed to swerve on its own even on straight roads, then I noticed a big grinding sound when I turned and I my stomach started tying itself up in knots. Sister Oglesby was following me in her car with 3 young women and I had 2 with me in mine. I so desperately wanted nothing to be wrong and told myself I would just keep driving until I couldn't possibly drive anymore. We were driving on windy country roads in the middle of nowhere Alabama. Then we rounded a corner and I saw a little gas station on the edge of a small town called Winfield.  Something told me to just pull over and at least talk about it with Sister Oglesby. She thought it needed to be taken to a mechanic right away and marched into the gas station to ask about a nearby mechanic. She got a recommendation for one just a mile or so down the main street but the lady didn't think the mechanics would be up yet. It was about 7:45 am. We went on a hunt for it and after not too much searching figured we saw something that could be it, and we pulled in and stopped. Within a few seconds a guy walked toward me and I was able to get out and explain the situation to him. Within 5 minutes, he had my car up on a lift and within 30 min had diagnosed the problem. A small, specialized screw connecting a rod from the turning thing to the wheel somehow had come out. It was an easy fix.... if they could find a correct replacement screw. He said we were very lucky the bar and/or screw hadn't banked up and got the whole tire stuck. With a serious expression and eyebrows raised he said "you don't want to be driving with it like this for long, not long at all."  The girls in their matching camp t-shirts were good troopers and just played games and practiced their skit all smiles and giggles for the 3 hours we waited. Then $65 dollars later we were on the road again and only an hour and a half late to camp since we had left so early. $65!!! That is the cheapest car fix I have ever had.... by far. Those mechanics were so nice and God definitely was watching over us. 


The next 4 days were filled with smiles, certification, skits, dancing, eating, laughing, praying, reading, and more dancing. With a theme of Be[YOU]tiful we talked about true beauty, righteous women, and finding happiness and contentment in being and in developing yourself. It was great. I learned a lot of names and took a lot of pictures, and slept not as much as I would've liked. I did the ropes course, went on a hike and shot a bow and arrow...or is it 'used a bow to shoot some arrows'...? 

 

The first couple of days Chris was texting me updates on how his cross-country drive with the kids was going. Remember, I left him in UT with all the kids? Apparently the morning I left for the airport, he packed up the kids from Jared and Ashley's, stopped by his parents house to pick up a few boxes where his sister Jess met him so our kids could have cousin time and she watched them play for a bit so Chris could take a nap.  Then it was a stop at Walmart to buy some new movies and a few pillows before he set off on the 29 hour drive home. With a few stops for food, gas and bathrooms, he drove until 4:00 in the morning before pulling over and getting a few hours of sleep using his new pillows to get some horizontal sleep across the driver and front seat.  Then he pushed hard again for most of the day (stopping for breaks during meals at sit-down restaurants) and by early evening he was ready to find a hotel. The next day they got off mid morning and drove the whole day getting home with enough time to have our traditional Friday night Movie night eating pizza in the living room.  WHEW. I was so worried for him. He's amazing. 

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