Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Pooh's Vacation

Well what an incredible few days we’ve had with our cousins, Blake (a.k.a. Pooh) and Pat.

The entire family, which isn’t very big, all gathered at the airport last Wednesday night to meet and greet them. Gathered there luggage and off we went to a little diner to have coffee, tea and dessert.

Thursday my parents took them to Lake Tahoe to spend the day in nature and enjoying the spectacular view of the lake.

Prior to my cousins arriving I was asked for input on things we could do while they were here. Knowing most…..well ok not most, ME, is on a fixed income and yet still wanting something fun to do I found out about these free concerts in a beautiful park in the downtown area. Moreover, knowing my cousin was formerly in a band and played the drums, I thought he and his wife would really enjoy such an event.

Friday with work and preparing to get together with the family afterwards was a little crazy, but we survived it. Family gathered at my house to head to the concert (Held every Friday night from May until August). The performers are local area bands. The night before Tesla was playing but we didn’t find out about it until it was too late. Anyway, we packed our ice chest, our blankets, jackets, chairs, etc. (looked like a group of rednecks gathering) and headed to the park. We got there relatively early so were able to mark off a territory in the grass that allowed us a great view of the crowd, located well enough away from the speakers, under beautiful trees and most importantly created a barricade that just encircled our group.

However, this event was extremely short lived because one of the family members made such a big fuss over the event that we had to load all of our stuff and leave before things really got started. My poor cousins were so disappointed because they didn’t understand why we had to leave; they were having a good time. They were enjoying the little bit of music they heard, they were enjoying the great outdoors, and were enjoying watching the people, but were overruled.
(By the way - this is the bottomside of a Muffin Top)

So, another family member, a little baffled by this situation, suggested that maybe we should go to another park and hang out there, which we did. Anthony (my nephew) and Amira had a fun time playing on the equipment.

Saturday morning we got up early as we had to meet my cousin and brother at the Mall because it was Pat’s (Pooh’s wife) birthday and we were also celebrating Anthony’s 11th birthday later that day. Around 1:00 p.m. we all gathered at a bowling alley where they were holding Anthony’s birthday party with 15 of his closest friends. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEECK! They were allowed to bowl for an hour, then went into this party room where they had pizza, soda, candy, ice cream and cake. Can you just imagine the over stimulated energy in that room of 14 boys and 1 girl? Oh my Gawd! I had to take shifts going in and out of there because it was too much. However, my poor sister-in-law was pretty much left to handle everything on her own, so we had to jump in and offer whatever kind of help we could to her. Poor thing! She’s an amazing woman. Will definitely have to blog about her later and her incredible story.

Later Saturday afternoon we all went back to my parent’s house to have a bbq and celebrate Pat’s birthday.
My brother had bought Anthony paintball guns so when they go camping over the summer they can have paintball wars. Must be a guy thing because I certainly don’t understand it. =) My brother, his friend and my cousin decided they needed to test the guns out in my parents pasture to make sure they worked properly.
However, I felt bad for Anthony because I got him a huge box of paintballs as his birthday present and he never got to use them because the 'guys' burned them up. :-(

We had a lovely evening with good food and good company. Dad started the fire pit they have and we all gathered around it after sunset and just visited for hours. Great fun!

Sunday morning came quickly, but we were on a mission now to take my cousins to San Francisco for the day. We drove to a town called Vallejo and caught a ferry that takes you right to the Fisherman’s Wharf on the San Francisco bay. It’s about an hour or so boat ride and it is most pleasant. It’s certainly the way to travel into the city. You don’t have to fight traffic, pay for parking, or end up going down the wrong one-way street. We meandered around the Pier 39 area, had lunch, and watched the sea lions. Talk about loud----oh my goodness. Although really cute, they are loud and obnoxious. We walked up to the cable car and road it from the Wharf area down to Union Station where they turned the car around. We jumped back own and road it through a different tracked area, which allowed us to see some of the major highlights of the city in a really short period of time. However, since the boat to return to Vallejo was coming at 4:00 p.m. we were quickly running out of time, which meant not a whole lot of sight seeing or gift shopping for the cousins……felt bad for them because no one asked them what they wanted to do. Well, I did, but was over-rode by others. My cousins kept saying, "Wow, this seems to be happening so fast and we’re not getting to see much. Why can’t we just stop and look?" I told them I didn’t know, but that if they decided to return to California to call me secretly and I’d meet them and do whatever they want to do. =)

On the way back to the boat, I discovered my camera was broken hence the reason you won’t see anymore vacation pictures. I was so bummed, but things like that happen. Hopefully have it up and running again soon, inshallah.

Monday back to work or maybe I should say back to catching up on our sleep…..LOL After Amira and I finished working we went back up to my parents house for a final dinner with my cousins as they are leaving. It’s always so sad to say goodbye to family/friends/loved ones because you never truly know when you will see each other again. However, we are so blessed with wonderful memories from their vacation, alhamdullilah.


Mixed Up Me said...

Sounds like fun (except for the concert incident) I'm taking that same Ferry to Pier 39 on Friday, and quite possibly, that same trolley!!

Sorry you were stressed, I didn't mean to add to it. I thought "Pooh" was an inside joke that I didn't get!! :) I do feel your frustration with the loading picture thing though . . . that's why I stopped loading graduation pictures the other day!!

a_akak said...

I am happy to see it was a good weekend with your family and yes Paintball seems to be a guy thing and I love it :) not sure why but it is great fun

fe aman allah

ibeebarbie said...

Hi Mixed Up Me,
You'll love the ferry ride. It's so peaceful and relaxing.

I know there has to be a better way to upload and arrange photos but I haven't figured it out yet. So, I just wrestle with it until I'm nearly out of my mind. LOL

Salam A_Akak,
LOL@not knowing why paintball is fub but do it anyway. My brother, his friend and cousin we thrilled to death to show us their lumps on their heads from being blasted with the paintballs. Almost like proud of their wounds for some reason.....LOL This I'd be curious to know know an explanation on. =)

Mixed Up Me said...

Love the muffin top picture!! Well, you know what I mean . . .

Anglo-Libyan said...

looks like a good weekend, sometimes we all get a family member that can be annouying but its life :o)

ibeebarbie said...

Salam Anglo-Libyan,
It was indeed a great weekend.

The beauty of annoying people is it's our opportunity to grow, inshallah.