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Monday, March 13, 2017

Momza's Crazy Adventure to Arizona

I won a trip for 2 to Arizona from work. The 2nd person has to be at least 21 so that meant my 2nd couldn't be kiddo.
Hubs couldn't go because we didn't feel comfortable not having one of us with kiddo. My BFF has health issues and she wouldn't be able to handle a trip like that so I invited a friend from work that manages a branch across the state.

I didn't get home until almost midnight Thursday night and had to wake up at 4 am Friday morning for my flight, my plane arrived in AZ about 12:15 and my luggage WAS NOT there!! Eek, had to file a report and turns out my bag was at Dallas.

Then we went to transportation and a driver was suppose to pick us up. He wasn't there. I had to scramble and find a number for the hotel and ask for somebody handling travel for our company and they said driver left, thinking I wasn't there?! what the?! they sent somebody to pick us up but it took 30 minutes to get them there but they upgraded our ride there to a Cadillac Escalade.

When we got to the resort, my room had been given away because I wasn't there?!!!?? But no worries, they upgraded me to a casita, lol

The gift card for incidentals wasn't there either. By this point, E and I were STARVED!!! We went to walk to the restuarant near the lobby, but got lost and ended up in a senior living center, lol (the resort is 65 acres and our casita was on the very west edge of it), shortly before 4, we managed to find the lobby. I'm all icky feeling since I couldn't change when we got there because I have no luggage, so we asked the lobby which of the restaurants I would be allowed to go in in my travel clothes that was close enough to find without getting lost again. Lunch was at 4 (after being awake 12 hours). Finally, I was relaxed and chilling. lol.

E wasn't though, because she was upset that I was having to buy lunch on my dime because the company gift card they promised wasn't there for me and it was going to be about $60) HR lady came in and we waved and chatted with her and I let her know that my luggage was delayed and that the gift card that was suppose to be waiting for me wasn't. She called a girl and left message her to find me and get me the gift card. K (HR lady that we were talking to) told me to go shopping and get one outfit for the night and turn it in to get reimbused and she bought our $60 lunch for us).

Can't say enough good about this place:

What was possibly BEST hamburger I've ever had in my life. Oh, and birds ate with us.

We went shopping and I got clothes for the night and bath and body works and the cab was $15 for 2 miles, lol came back and was dropped off at lobby and we asked bellhop for golf cart ride to the casita and she called the other bellhop to get cart. I said I was running into gift shop to get drinks to take to room because I was feeling thirsty. Emma came with me, we ran into friends and 2 drinks and 3 hours later, we remembered we had a golf cart waiting on us, lol.

When we came back thru the lobby, the girl looked at my face and just died laughing. I said "I'm sorry, we ran into people and 3 hours later, I remembered we asked for a ride". They were so sweet and it wasn't like they rejected giving people rides waiting on us and she said it was no big deal and she was glad we were having fun anyway.

I can't say enough good things about that resort.

I have been there once before, but it was years ago and it was even better than I remembered and I still recalled it as the best place I'd ever stayed in my life:

11:30 pm AZ time, my luggage showed up. That's 1:30 my normal time.

Next morning, we get up at 7 am AZ time because we want to fill in every second we can since we missed out the day before on so much, still no gift card. Company had breakfast waiting, we decided to go to the ghost town and have fun. We weren't able to go the day before as planned because by the time we got in, ghost town was closed. I was much more annoyed about not getting to do activities the first day than the fact that the luggage was delayed.

E said for me to call HR and get card before we went since the day could get expensive. After a few calls I tracked down M (the girl K had contacted), she met us in the lobby and gave us the card. We asked a bellhop about a ride and he said the cab to the ghost town would run 127 each way and suggested uber instead, lol. He helped us get set up and got us a $15 coupon, but uber doesn't take the gift card, lol. So my money again, $30 there, $45 back. lol. Get to the ghosttown and buy our ticket for 3 of the exhibits and hand them the card we got. They don't take cards, it's 1837, they need cash, lol. You can't even make this up. I just fell across the counter at that point.

I had to call hubs and get the pin number to our credit card because I had to go to an ATM machine and you can't use gift cards on an ATM. so our money again, lol. We went ziplining, rode a historical train tour, went in a mystery house and toured a gold mine. By then we were ready for lunch and found a cute place for burgers and hotdogs. They even took cards. yay!! Gave them my gift card, ummmm, we don't take American Express, only Visa and Mastercard. I was dying laughing at this point, probably looking like an insane person. I paid cash and we ate, explored the ghost town more, watched a gun fight, toured a church, bought souveniers. The "cat house" I wanted to visit was closed.

Tired, we called uber to pick us back up and headed back to our casita. On the way we saw a casino and I got excited thinking about moms ashes and that she'd like to visit there and asked E if she was interested in going to the casino after dinner. The uber driver said it was a nicer one closer to our place and gave us recommendations, etc. E was too excited, she said she hoped I wasn't kidding because she REALLY wanted to do that.

Dinner was a company required dinner (the only thing we were required to do with others). She asked me what time dinner was over (it was open and no close time) and I said no specific time, she said look at her when I was ready to go and we'd go. Not long after dinner, we bailed, lol. Oh, but before dinner, there was a reception. I said I wanted to go to the orange grove and then hit reception late. We ran into a golf cart guy that picked us up and we forgot about the orange grove, lol. We had an amazing time at dinner, but still excited about our adventures planned.

After dinner, we hitched a ride with a golf cart driver, but he got lost. We ran into our normal golf cart driver and he told the guy that he didn't know what he was doing and that they needed to take us, that he could drive the local resort people and he'd take those of us in casitas. We were dying laughing. Our new golf driver told the one that was lost that he'd taken us there numerous times and we'd be fine. ALL of us were laughing.

We changed into our play clothes and called uber to pick us up after dinner and we headed to casino. As you can guess, I made next to nothing, lol, I quit quick knowing how my trip was going. E came out ahead about $250 and gave me $45 (she made me use $25 there and the other $20 was for the trip back to the resort--uber was $27 each way, my money because they don't take the gift card, only normal cards, lol). We ran into people from our company that we had met at the dinner from other states, so we caught a ride with them and saved some moolah, lol. So, I told E since we forgot the orange grove, we needed to wake up 1/2 hour early and go see it and then head to lobby to check out. We set my alarm for 6:10 am, since we had to leave in the company provided bus at 7:30 to go to the airport.

Alarm goes off and I felt so groggy from getting in late night night before. This girl doesn't do partying and late hours.

I get up though and take my shower and then wake E up. She looks at me like I've grown 2 heads. My phone had auto advanced an hour for time change, but Arizona doesn't have time change. I woke up an hour early for nothing.

We forget we were walking to the orange grove and got on a golf cart, where our little guy spins around the corner and drops my luggage. I scream "I can't believe I forgot to go the orange grove". At that point we didn't even have time. He said "girls, I've got this, I can ride you over real quick and get you back in time". He dropped our luggage at the bus and told them to give us 5 minutes. The orange grove smelled so amazing.

We head back, get in the bus and go to the airport.

Once at the airport, I pull out the gift card and go to the kiosk, check in and want to use the gift card to pay for my baggage claim. They don't take that gift card, so I use my own money again. 1st leg of the journey home went well, connecting flight was delayed. I hate the Charlotte airport so of course that's the one I was stuck in during the delay. Get back home after finally getting on my plane and my luggage isn't there.

What?! Luggage? Missing? Both ways?

How does that even happen? It's 11 am and I still don't have my luggage. It was promised by 5:30. I called, they do have it and it will be delivered, but good grief. What a ton of challenges for so much fun and yes, the fun WAY out weighed the bad.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

The broken road

5 years ago today, there was a little girl visiting for the weekend that woke us up crazy early. She was so beautiful and spunky.

We assumed that since a visit was planned with us, it was because we were going to be chosen to be her parents. It's unusual for a child to be visiting multiple families.  During that weekend, she mentioned to us that she was visiting another family the following weekend.

A few issues happened with that little girl outside of the visits that caused her worker to delay her decision a little longer than we thought it would be.  

That's what we were told though. We didn't know then it was really a different reason.

We weren't the ones chosen and it would be several months before we realized that there was a grander plan that was coming true and the perfect daughter was just around the corner, one that we were meant to parent forever and would instantly fall in love with.

That delay happened about the time things were coming to a head in our daughters first adoptive home.  I'm convinced the delay was so that child would go elsewhere and we'd be available for our child.

Thank God for that broken road that led us straight to our daughter <3

I can't imagine life without her. The moment I found out about her though I knew why WE went through all we did before finding her. Every tear, every rejection was all a part of what needed to happen so we'd be available when it was time for her to be with us.

When I think of those visits vs the visits with our kid was so different, I see now that it just wasn't there.  She was fun, we enjoyed it, but it wasn't like having a daughter with us.  Our baby even felt like our daughter from the very first moment we laid eyes on her.

I was exhausted when we dropped Ms H off after that weekend with us.

When we dropped our kiddo off after the first weekend with us, it felt like she'd only been with us a few hours. I cried that she wasn't going back home with us.  It was like the difference between babysitting and parenting.

Okay, maybe I do believe in love at first sight.