Friday, June 6, 2014

An Eating, Talking, Laughing, Thankful Week

I don't mean to brag or anything, but I'm writing my Ten Things of Thankful post an entire day early. Okay, totally bragging.

Last Saturday afternoon, my daughter and I drove to Branson to meet my person and her kids at my parents' lake house. We hadn't seen each other since March, so we've been counting the days until this trip! Our drive was two hours; their drive was 8 hours. Guess who almost let her friends arrive at her house before she was there herself? It was a close one, and only the beginning of a week chock-full of thankfuls:

1. Terri used to live in Branson and performed in several different shows in town. This means she has CONNECTIONS and was not afraid to use them. End result was that we got to reap the benefits of her connections and attend a myriad of shows and events, either for free or at greatly reduced prices. 

2. While Branson is a huge tourist destination, our family uses it as a place to be complete sloths. Not this time. We hit the ground running from the time our friends arrived and didn't stop the entire time. Saturday night, we attended the Haygoods Show. Five brothers and one sister, all talented musicians, singers and dancers. I am always in awe of talent that runs through a family like that (think Osmonds, if you will). 


The girls with Matthew and Michael Haygood.
They are each scheming to marry Michael.

3. Monday morning, armed with a pocketful of quarters for the food dispensers, I took the kids (all 15 and 16 years old) to the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. I failed at getting a video of them, which saddens me a little, because I wanted to record their giggles as the fish lunged at the food pellets they dropped into the pools. 




4. Tuesday morning, I took three of the kids to the Ralph Foster Museum at College of the Ozarks. This place is a gem: admission is free for kids under 18 and only $6 for adults, and it's filled with local artifacts, from furniture and dolls to stuffed animals (the real kind, not the toys) and weapons and more. 

The pièce de résistance of the Ralph Foster Museum is this:


Yes, kiddies, it's the REAL Clampett car from
The Beverly Hillbillies.

5. Terri's son was in seventh heaven at the sight of all the guns on display. I don't know nuthin' about guns, but I do know there were old pistols and rifles and such. At one point, after staring intently into a huge display case of weapons, he turned to me and said excitedly, "If this place ever gets attacked by zombies, THIS is where you go!" I think he was only partially kidding.

6. Wednesday, we packed a picnic lunch and headed to Moonshine Beach on Table Rock Lake. In spite of the following, it was a fun time:

I got bitten by a housefly on my ankle and the little bastard drew blood.
The sand was not that ultra-fine beach sand you might be used to, but rather hauled-in sand that was coarse and rough and made it feel as though you were scuffing your feet on coarse-grade sandpaper. Which you kind of were.
There were rocks in the sand. Sharp ones.
It was windy. And sand being sand, it blew onto you and stuck in your sunscreen.
The water was pretty cold. Which didn't matter to me, because I had no plans to get in it, but it mattered to at least two of the little angels who were with us.




7. The amazing Terri also scored us tickets to see Jonah, which is, you guessed it, the story of the guy who was swallowed by the whale, told as a musical. I know, I know, but it was really good! The scenery and special effects were spectacular. The cast was talented. I would not have believed I would enjoy the production, but I was wrong and stand corrected. She also arranged for us to go to the Dixie Stampede, another show that I wasn't too sure I was going to like, but I did. Plus, they feed you so much, you sometimes were so busy eating, you forgot to watch the show.




8. Thursday, we went to Silver Dollar City, an 1880s theme park, which is my happy place. After a morning of severe thunderstorms, a power outage that lasted about an hour and a half and caused four teenagers to huddle in the living room with us, because they were varying degrees of scared, we ended up with a delightfully cool, non-humid afternoon at the park. I made it my mission to eat my way through the park and did a pretty fair job of it. The kids rode rides and ate THEIR way through the park. I stopped to listen to the Homestead Pickers, people watched, rode the steam engine train, as Terri had never done it before, got cheese in my hair, and enjoyed sitting in a shady spot and talking and laughing with my person.

9. We visited a lot of folks. Like Freddy (as in Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers), Billy Bob (as in Billy Bob's Dairyland), Danna (as in Danna's BBQ), Andy (that would be Andy's Frozen Custard). We had lunch with Terri's former boss, Buck Trent (that was a hoot). We sat up late and talked. And talked. And talked.

10. Sadly, Friday morning arrived and they departed, but not without one last meal at Freddy's before they left. We spent a long time saying goodbye in the parking lot, and Terri, who is not good at such things, tried to take a selfie of us. 


Her daughter, either feeling sorry for her or disgusted by her failure to take a decent selfie (or some combination thereof), took command of her mom's phone. We were just posing for the picture when Terri made some rather unladylike sound (a burp, maybe, or possibly a throat growl), and we fell apart. Because that's what best friends do.



Sometimes, they nearly wet their pants. NEARLY.






Who wouldn't be thankful after a week like that? 

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38 comments:

  1. ...and there was ode to boris and natasha! What a great trip! I love the photos of you cracking up!

    We have a fish hatchery not far from here and it is fun to feed them... If you had told me I would dig that I would have thought you were nuts so I guess I can accept that Jonah and the Whale could be a good musical! Somehow that made more sense in my head.

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    1. I love my Ode to Boris and Natasha picture, so I decided to throw it in the mix. I also love the pictures of us cracking up. It made it easier to say goodbye, since we were laughing so hard.

      I finally told myself to suspend reality and then I was able to enjoy the Jonah story.

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  2. Ohhhh I LOVE that picture of you where you're absolutely cracking up laughing. Just one of those perfect 'this is what life's all about' moments. I'm delighted you got to spend so much solid time with your Person. This is a beautiful, wonderful post of the very best kind of happy.

    And I giggled at the girls all plotting about how they were going to marry Michael. And that the teens were afraid of the thunderstorm. :)

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    1. It was a beautiful, wonderful, marvelous week! And the kids were SO FUNNY! They were already a little restless, because there was a lot of thunder and lightning. The lights going out were the last straw.

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    2. Oh, and two of the girls decided to go with the sister-wife plan. One of them was going to hold out and try to get him all for herself.

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  3. What a marvelous week! I like the last photograph best.

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    1. Thank you, Romi! I love that picture, too! So glad I didn't wet my pants!

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  4. well how wonderful was your week! TOTALLY !!! WHAT a fab list from one of my fave peeps!!! xoxoxoxox jean

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  5. What a great get-away! We have been to the fish hatchery. Going in I thought....WHY????, but it was awesome. I have wondered about the Noah show. We may have to trek over sometime, though Branson kind of overwhelms my introverted soul.

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    1. Where do you live? Did I know you were close enough to come here for a vacay? If you ever do, WE CAN MEET!
      The fish hatchery is awesome fun! It's especially exciting to be there if they are running water over the top of Table Rock Dam, which just may happen this week, the way it's been raining.

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  6. Great laughter pics! Sounds like a wonderful week. I'm going to ignore the stuff about Moonshine Beach, thought because when you just say the name it sounds like possibly the funnest place on Earth.

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    1. Moonshine Beach is a great name, isn't it? There's another beach nearby called Lawnchair. It used to be a party place, but I don't know about that now that I'm a grown up ;)

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  7. Sounds like you had a great week! I've never been to Branson, but it sure sounds like fun.

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  8. Any trip that includes a place called Moonshine Beach has to be awesome. I've always seen those tourist commercials for vacations in Branson and thought "who the heck goes there???" Now I know! So glad you all had a wonderful time!

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    1. Well, Lisa, come on down to Branson! We'll have a big time!

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  9. "Action"shots are usually the best. Isn't it great to capture moments as they happen? Your Person's daughter did an excellent job manning the "kodak"!
    Very cool week of thankfuls Dyanne. The hatchery brought back pleasant memories. We had a pond on our property in FL. For a while we had lots of huge catfish in it. We'd go out many mornings and throw dog kibble to them. They loved it! We eventually started naming the catfish. lol

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    1. I love those pictures of us laughing hysterically! So much better than the posed one she planned!
      Did you eat the catfish? It would be hard to eat something you named....

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    2. No! I could never eat something I named!!! Eventually an otter family came along and wiped out the whole lot of them!

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    3. Obviously, the otter had no qualms about eating something you named.

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  10. very cool trip! (the actual car from the Beverly Hillbillies? damn… that was such a…something part of my childhood)
    successful vacation is all that sounds like!

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    1. THE ACTUAL CAR, CLARK! Several episodes of the Beverly Hillbillies were shot at Silver Dollar City.

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  11. Sounds like you had a wonderful week ..i love those moments when we let down our hair and actual experience or engage or be in the moment...isn't it something those moments are actual times where there's a connection...well for me it is ...enjoy the week and thank you for stopping by ;)

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    1. It was a great week, thanks! We finish each other's sentences. That's some kind of connection between two friends!

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  12. Sounds to me like the best week ever! I am so happy y'all had such a great time with friends. I love the pics of you about to pee your pants....that would have been absolute perfection for me after last weeks post and the snickers I got!
    How long has your Pinterest button been right there? Please tell me you just put it there so I don't feel like a total dolt for not seeing if all these months!

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    1. IT WAS SO FUN! And when I nearly wet my pants, I was thinking about you, Sandy!
      I put the Pinterest button on a few months ago, and it took me ages to figure out how to do it. I need to do a little design housekeeping, obviously.

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  13. Now, THAT'S a week to be thankful for! I've been following your adventures on facebook, but I somehow didn't realize you were with your person. So glad you had such a great time: such great adventures, entertainment, and food! This is the third week in a row that someone has mentioned peeing her pants. Christine (though I don't think that was TToT, then Sandy last week, and now you). Maybe I'll take up the baton. Someone needs to be get me really laughing.

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    1. We had such a good time! I don't usually post that much on facebook, figuring no one else really cares that much about what I'm doing at any given moment :)
      I would like to point out that, unlike Christine and Sandy, I did NOT actually pee my pants, although I came dangerously close. You are welcome to pick up the baton and go with it. Will be looking forward to the story next week.

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  14. This sounds like an amazing week. Definitely full of thankfuls.

    I love the picture of you and your friend laughing. It is perfect.

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    1. We laugh like that a lot, but it's the first time anyone ever got a picture of it!

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  15. Gosh, Dyanne you've had a great week by the sounds of it! Great photo of you with the giggles. But where's Ruby?!!!!

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    1. I was without Ruby for the entire week, because my friend is allergic to cats. I MISSED HER SO MUCH!

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  16. Oh my goodness! Love those last 2 pictures of you guys!

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  17. Mean old flies! We have more yellow flies here this year than I've ever seen and they hurt so much when they bite! Evil little jerks.
    I love the pics!

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    1. I didn't even know a fly could bite you enough to draw blood. Still waiting to turn into a fly.

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  18. You have so much to brag about! It looks like you had an awesome week with Terri. I just love the picture of both of you cracking up. I can really go for some Freddy's right now. I hope next week is better :)

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