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Magical World

Wouldn't it be lovely if, with just a twitch of the nose, life, or any aspect of it could be changed. Instead, positive changes always seem to involve tremendously hard work, determination, and endless setbacks. How lovely it would be to have the powers of Samantha Stephens.

Monday, July 17, 2006


Up at 5:00. Normal for me--not for my kids. They went back to sleep. I did my scripture study and prayer while Darrin showered and ironed all his shirts. There are few things that Darrin does that get on my nerves, but this is one of them. We pack for a trip and he has to iron all his clothes before we go. There is ALWAYS an iron wherever we go--and then he irons the clothes AGAIN. It's been this way for 20 years. However, I can't complain about infidelity, abuse, or any other mistreatment, so I know this is extremely petty. It won't cause a divorce. I showered, finished packing, and woke the kids again.

We loaded the car and left arount 7:00. We have to hit the airport around 10:00. I forgot the paperwork with the kids' e-ticket info. We decided to just keep going and hope we can get everything sorted out at the airport. Adam started feeling ill before we left. That continued on the trip to the airport. I gave him my mp3 player and headphones, and told him to try to go back to sleep.

We got to the airport in plenty of time, checked the kids in (no problem with the tickets) and got Darrin and I gate passes to see them off. Adam walked next to me as we went to the gate. He asked if there was any way to change his ticket and come with Darrin and I. He's nervous. I called my aunt to let her know of his worry. She promised to give him a little extra attention. He'll be fine.

The airline assigned an attendant to be with the kids the whole time they were in the air, and to escort them to the baggage claim to meet my aunt. DJ raised his eyebrows (feeling that he probably didn't need a baby-sitter). I told him that it was probably because of Tabitha and Adam. DJ still looked skeptical, but just put on his headphones and listened to music until the plane left.

Darrin and I wandered the airport for an hour, then boarded our plane. Darrin slept almost immediately. I listened to my mp3 player--all the music that DJ loaded on it. Darrin asked me one time why I listen to DJ's music. I said, "Well, do YOU know what he's listening to?" Darrin admitted he didn't--he doesn't like DJ's music. I said, "One of us needs to keep track of him..." I'm the natural choice since I don't "bond" with music. I listen to the lyrics, analyze it harmonically, decide if it seems harmful, overtly sexual, or obscene, then I give DJ the thumbs up or down. Because I don't get emotional about music, it's easy for me to be objective--not something most people do, since music is used as an emotional escape or expression. Just an occupational hazard for me--I'm too critical to get emotionally attached.

Darrin woke up and asked what I was listening to. I told him I'd finished the All American Rejects, a little bit of Fall Out Boy, and was midway through Dashboard Confessional, at which point we'd be on to Shinedown. Darrin grinned at me and said, "You're a good mom." I laughed and said, "This is pretty mellow compared to DJ's last download." I have to admit that some of the stuff is actually well-written, musically, and, if you're into emo, the lyrics aren't all awful, either. Darrin asked me if I got into music when I was a teen. Honestly, there was so much going on in my life then, that I don't really remember. I think I must have--is there a teen that doesn't? But after I started suppressing all my feelings, well, lyrics all seemed trite, and totally disconnected from what I was doing. Honestly, though, I really want my kids to have normal, healthy growing up years--not like mine. So DJ and I continue to work on making good choices in mainstream music, and I'm just glad he'll let me be a part of that.

We landed in Las Vegas. 110 degrees. Need I say more? No swimming for me--all the pools are outdoor, and I'm staying in the air conditioning!

I just have to say--I don't love Las Vegas. Too many people with whom I have nothing in common. I am a HICK!! And I kind of like being that way. Smoking is allowed in the casinos and lobbies of our hotel (MGM Grand), so I'm living on my asthma inhaler--which I absolutely HATE. And I find it totally ironic that you can put quarters in any of 150 cheesy slot machines
but walk fifty feet and be in a classy, immorally expensive restaurant in which the least expensive steak costs $98.00. I'm not kidding. Lobster is less expensive ($65.00), and you can order sides (grilled vegetables) starting at $10.00. AMAZING!! I ashamed to admit that I kind of want to go order one of those steaks, just to see if it's worth the cost. And I don't eat meat!!

Darrin and I checked in, registered for his convention, then went up to our room and found our friends who are also attending. They just moved to another city, so we spent some time catching up. They're pregnant (after 6 years of trying) with twins. How fun!!! We dressed and went to the opening reception which had LOADS of alcohol (the bar tenders hate the soft drink orders, but love me because I drink lime and tonic water. I always got fun extras put in my drink--cherries, parasols, other stuff. Darrin says I always get the fun stuff--but you just have to know what to order), great food, and no place to sit. We watched Cirque de Soleil, which is amazing and weird. We ate the great food and sat on the floor. Then when everyone else was very drunk, we went to our room, said good night to our friends, and got ready for bed.


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