Well if you regularly read my blog and I don't think anyone out there does, you can see I have not been around much. That is because we were in Houston, Texas having the time of our lives last week and this week has been a series of sicknesses. I have been sick and my internet connection has been sick. I am not sure which is worse!!!! Not getting here to blog has been weighing heavily on me, so I am going to do my best today. I can't promise this is going to be a short post. Quite the opposite probably.
So let's start with our trip. We went to Texas to spend a week with the other four families that adopted their daughters when we adopted our favorite Ping. Two of the families who didn't know each other happened to live in the Houston area. So each family invited a family to stay with them. We stayed with Jim, Jan, Larkyn and Hope in Katy and James, Michele and Caleigh from Michigan stayed with Phong and Siany in Houston.
Bill and I left Boston on Sunday the 28th and headed to Dallas, Texas. From there we took another small plane over to Houston, Texas. We picked up our rental SUV and headed out to Katy, Texas. First of all, the weather was downright gorgeous. I could easily live there. However, I would have to move out of there before summer or I would be one cooked chick! So we drove to Katy which was less than an hour from the airport. We were greeted by our fabulous host for the week, Jim. We hadn't seen Jim in two years, so we were thrilled to see him. Jim gave us a tour of their gorgeous home. Jan is an interior decorator and so her house is a beautiful showpiece of course. We were shown to our room, which was their second oldest son's room, but he is in college. There we were greeted with two wonderful bags of gifts. Ping got a stuffed bear with a hat on it that said Houston. We got some cookies, a mug, a bumper sticker, an ornament, some salsa, some candy and a few other things. What a beautiful touch. There was also fresh flowers in the bathroom which was attached to our room. Yay for getting a bathroom to ourselves.
Bill and I proceeded to unplack and then join Jim downstairs. Hope was waking up from the nap she was taking when we arrived. It wasn't long before Hope and Ping were running the place. We had some hamburgers and then relaxed. Jan and Larkyn were not home as they had a big event that day. We stayed up way past tired because we wanted to say hello, but finally collapsed and missed seeing Jan by about 5 minutes. They are an hour behind our time though and we had been up since 3:00 am.
The next morning we got up and reunited with Jan. It was so nice to see her after two years. We had plans to meet Phong, Siany, Megan, James, Michele and Caleigh at a Vietnamese restaurant at 11:00 am, so we headed out the door. Phong explained the various items at the buffet and we all sat down for a nice lunch. It was so nice to all be together again. It really warmed my soul. That plus it was hot out and I was sweating! Their ethnic areas are very different from us. It was fascinating. After we ate, we went to a mall of all Vietnamese stuff and then to a Vietnamese wholesale place. We got Ping a gorgeous new dress, a fan and a few pairs of shoes. We were then going to go to a Vietnamese temple, but it started to pour. We headed home. Dinner was lasagna. We were exhausted, so it was great to sit at the table and just chat. Unfortunately, Jim was unable to join us as he had to fly to California for business.
The next day we all met at the zoo. We had a fabulous time. The zoo is not only nice, but it's huge. My feet were killing me, but it was so nice to be out in the gorgeous weather. For dinner we all were able to eat together at Papasittos, a Mexican restaurant. We sat outside in a heated tent. They have more restaurants in the area than I can count. We had a great time.
On Wednesday, Phong and Siany decided to cook dinner for our. Real Chinese food was on the menu. We didn't meet during the day so that Siany could cook. Instead, Jan and Hope and the three of us headed out to do a few errands. Jan had to grab something at the grocery store and she took me to Hobby Lobby, which I have heard a ton about. We don't have one here. We had lunch at Chik Fil A first. I had always wanted to try one, but we don't have any around us. They have Sonics too!!!!!! We only get the commercials.
We headed to Phong and Siany's house for 5:00 pm. Siany is a wonderful cook and their home is absolutely lovely. A fifth family that traveled with us were able to attend. When we were in China, there was a couple with two children there to adopt an older child. The little girl was 6. Unfortunately, mom and the other two girls were so sick in China, we never met them. So even though there was a group of 5 couples traveling, there were only 4 couples always present. All of us ran into the husband a few times with the new little girl, but nobody ever met the mom or the other two girls. The also live in the Houston area. Crazy coincidence! So David the dad and the three girls came to have dinner with us. Michele made a wonderful cheesecake for dessert and the girls all played.
The following day we went to the Livestock show. The Rodeo and Livestock show was in Houston while we were there. I was thrilled that we could be there at the same time as this was all going on. We didn't see the Rodeo, but we went to the Livestock show and the Mid-Way which is all rides. Ping got to ride the slide, the carousel, Aladdin and the spinning dinosaur. She had a blast. The Livestock show was cute. There was a petting zoo for the kids. I wish I had gone in, but I didn't. They had a fawn in there Bill said. I was too busy looking for the group that we were meeting there. Finally, Michele and I connected. Also, Kendra the mom of the three girls came with the girls, so we met her for the first time. Seeing the animals was cool. At the end of the day, Jan, Jim who was home from his business trip, Hope and the three of us walked around the vendor area of the show. We bought Ping a bright Ping cowboy hat with a tiara on it!!!!!! We then went home for a jambalaya dinner. It was nice to sit as I was exhausted. My poor feet. We had an absolute blast though.
On Friday, we met at the Childrens Museum. The kids had a blast. To be honest, I didn't really participate in much. It was an absolutely wonderful week, but I was really tired by then, so I watched Ping and the girls play and have a great time. For dinner we went to Rainforest Cafe.
Saturday, the familes came over to Jan and Jim's house because Jim was cooking fajitas for everyone. The fifth family was able to attend as well. Jan and I ran to do a few errands before everyone came over. Bill and I packed for our departure the next morning. Dinner was great. We really enjoyed sitting around and talking. Unfortunately, I felt really tired and a little off. That sort of spoiled it for me.
The next morning, we got up at 6:00 am and got ready for the airport. I didn't feel good. I kept gagging. Now this occasionally happens in the morning, but this seemed different. We said our goodbyes and headed to the airport. The entire drive, I just breathed deeply and tried to concentrate on not getting ill. At this point, I knew something was really wrong. We drop off the rental car and hop on the shuttle. We drop Bill off at the main office of the rental place and swing around in the airport to grab someone before heading back to get Bill. I nearly lost it. Six times I gagged really, really bad. Bill jumped on the shuttle and we headed across the street to the airport. We checked in, went through security and settled in at the gate. Suddenly, I needed to use the ladies room. At that point, I knew something was really wrong.
We boarded the first airplane to Dallas. We had very little time to get from one airplane to the other. We boarded the second plane in Dallas which would take us back to Boston. We were in the air for about 45 minutes when I had to use the ladies room. It was then that I started to literally lose everything. I was throwing up in the sink and using the toilet at the same time. If you know what I mean. I don't need to spell it out! After 15 minutes or so, I went back to my seat and concentrated on breathing and keeping calm. Approximately an hour before Boston, I start waving my hands like crazy. The bathrooms had lines going to them and so I needed a bag to throw up in. Bill grabbed the bag for me and I opened it just in time. Some jerk had stuck two gummy pieces of candy in the bag. Like a sour watermelon or something. Needless to say, I needed none of that sweet smell. The flight attendant saw that I was throwing up and got me a big plastic bag. Sadly, again I had an issue with both ends. I did the best I could. I was afraid to even look. I held my lovely bag for the last hour of the trip. Once we landed, they couldn't get the stairs over to the plane. That delayed us from getting off. We let everyone get off before us. The flight attendant took my bag from me. I said I would carry it, but she said she would take it. There was someone a few rows back from me also throwing up. I heard everyone talking about it. That didn't help. Anyway, we got off and went to the baggage area and then to the shared van pick up area.
After 15 minutes of waiting, I called the company of the shared van. They proceed to tell me that my credit card never went through. At this point, I am so weak. I can't even wheel my damn bag. So I tell her that I gave my correct card number weeks ago, but she said she needed it again. Once it was run, she told me the van was 10 minutes away from us. When the van finally arrived, it was absolutely full of people. I had to get in the front seat!!!!!!! I nicely said to the driver that I will do my best to keep my germs on my side, but if I asked him to pull over, please do so quickly as I was sick. He called the company and requested a couple of vans to meet us in Framingham so that we could all get to our destinations quicker. He then turned on the a/c for me. I was so grateful to him for that. I need to be cool when I feel that sick.
Once in Framingham, we jumped into the oldest van in the fleet with the oldest driver in the fleet!!!!! I swore that I would never see my house again. He drove 30 in a 50 miles per hour zone. God help me. Once home, I tried to get myself into the house in the dark while the gentleman told my husband that the van wasn't paid for. I told Bill to tell him to call the company for verification. Needless to say, it was paid for. I crawled to my chair. I didn't move. I was so weak. It took me over five tries to get up a few hours later. I was a total mess.
The next day I slept in till over 1:00 pm. I felt bad, but there was no way in heck I could get Ping to school. I was too weak. The throwing up had started, but I was still having terrible diarrhea. Needless to say, I had one small bottle of G2 for the entire day. I just sat and vegged.
On Tuesday, I had a little more energy. I was still having some lingering affects, but I was much better. Unfortunately, I had gone to Houston with a cold and had come back with what seemed like a new cold on top of it all. All I did was make sure that Ping got to school. Anything else getting done was gravy in my opinion. Don't forget all the unpacking and mail that had to be done or gone through!
On Wednesday, I took Ping to school and then went for a CAT scan on my sinuses. Other than that, I didn't do much else but putter around the house and try to organize it a little.
Thursday I felt my best. I had a 1:15 am appointment with my primary care in Norwood to go over several issues. While I was away, I got an email telling me that it was discovered that I had an abnormal EKG back in September. Mind you, I was told it was fine. I was also told I had low Albumin. That worried me. This was all told to me via email from a surgeon who I would like to have surgery with in the future. So I was going to the doctors for a new EKG and some blood work. The worst part of the appointment was downing water so that I could leave a urine sample. I tried three times, but it was hard to have water since my belly has been so wishy washy due to the stomach bug. I finally told them that I had done the best I could. I wasn't driving back another hour to do it, so I hoped that my sample was good enough. My EKG is still abnormal, so next week I have to go for an echo and stress test. I also need a CAT scan of my lungs. It's a follow up to one I had in September. It was a long day. Bill came home early to be with Ping so I could go to the doctors by myself. It's hard to bring a young one when you have to go to the doctors, but you have to do what you have to do and sometimes there isn't another option. Last think I want is to have an EKG while I am pulling Ping off the wall.
Friday came and I was feeling my best. I got back to eating a little better too. Other than Ping going to school, I took her to her Creative Movements class in the afternoon.
In addition to all that has gone on all week, we have barely had a phone or any internet access. It's been really frustrating. Several calls and visits from Charter and still it's not much better. So I am switching to Verizon in a week. I can't take it anymore. I need a phone and a reliable one at that. I also need to get internet access and it's really sketchy and that is only if it's not completely out.
Today is Saturday. We are home. It's pouring out. Ping is watching TV and dancing around the house. I am catching up here and Bill is catching up with all of our laundry. A nice boring day at home. I sure miss the sunshine that Texas had. I haven't been that happy in a long time and I know the sun was a huge factor in that. I even got a sunburn while there. Mind you, it's long gone now. I can't handle all this gray darkness. Other than wishing we were still in Texas, we are all good for now.
Well I better get to posting some pictures of our trip.
Goofing around at the airport.
Ping ready for a book.
Jim reading to Hope and Ping.
Hope and Ping during lunch.
Ping, Hope, Megan and Caleigh. So incredibly sweet.
Joined at the heart.
Fish at the zoo.
Megan and Caleigh.
Girls at the zoo.
Ping and Hope. Hope loves to sit on rocks. Adorable.
Ping and Hope in a nest.
Hope and Megan brushing the sheep.
Caleigh, Hope and Ping.
Hanging in a bubble.
Hope and Ping climbing with James and Caleigh in the background.
Feeding the ducks.
Baby elephant playing.
Caleigh pushing Mama Michelle.
On the train.
Ping and Caleigh.
Ali, Hope's doggy.
Girls having dinner.
James and Phong.
Michelle and Bill.
Siany's fine cooking.
Siany and Phong.
Megan blowing bubbles.
Caleigh. Such a poser.
Girls from the 5th family.
Ping and Hope waiting to go to the Livestock show.
On our way via golf cart.
On our way.
What can I say?
Ping in the petting zoo.
Dancing with the cow.
Driving the big truck.
In the wheel well.
Ping on the slide.
Heading back to the car with Ping's new cowboy hat.
Jan and Ping in the hot tub.
Hope after the hot tub.
Jan reading to the girls.
Caleigh at the Childrens Museum.
The cute grocery store.
The ambulance and police station.
Ping in Vietnam.
Ping rock climbing.
Hope and Ping.
Playing in the sand.
Watching a movie.
Hot tub and pool at Jan and Jim's home.
Beautiful home we stayed at.
Hope's beautiful bedroom.
Upstairs sitting area.
Our room for the week.
Another entertainment room with offices and a work out room.