Packing bags for three people should be easy- right?
Unless you are packing for a low maintenance dad, a medium maintenance (and more than slightly sloppy) mom, and a mega-watt high maintenance 10 month old.
But, just like everything in life- there is an art to it.
A sleepy, determined, baseball cap sporting mamma fueled by thoughts of Red Rocks and Stephen King novels has yet to perfect her packing ability but she inches dangerously closer with every trip. One of these days, I solemnly swear, I will master the beautiful art that is mom-packing. ....but by then Sedona will probably be 19 and tell me to buzz off. Because I'm embarrassing. And she has already far surpassed my packing skills (I hope).
Despite the sweaty parents and the smelly formula bottles, we touched down in Arizona. I anticipated the relief of not traveling with an infant- what I did not fully anticipate was the feeling of delicious nostalgia when I saw my gorgeous family.
My jaw dropping sister- who is not only a mother but is the most incredible weaver of melodies I have ever heard. She can rock a pair of heels, change a dirty diaper, improvise the lullaby that will send even the fussiest child off to dreamland- and still make me cry every time I leave her side.
My cousins. My niece. My nephew. My tall, handsome, goofy not-so-little brother. Literally growing up before my eyes. It was a mermaid birthday party for Josphine (aka Jo Jo Beans), Reece, and Riley. Mermaids are supposed to be a creature of fantasy, and I will tell you that they live up to the "tail". or the fairy "tale," take your pick on words. Spending time with these beautiful growing girls showed me " a whole new world," ( yes, we are a family of Disney fanatics!)
I saw my dad and Stepmom cradle my baby and my blue eyed baby brothers and beautiful step sisters lovingly stroke her fine, stringy blonde hair. Teach her how to play Hungry Hippos. Let her hold their thumbs while she pushed up and arched her feet so that she could see what the world looked like standing up. These moments are irreplaceable and seeing her surrounded by so much love and energy makes a jet-lagged mama feel ecstatic. safe. happy.
I saw my aunt and uncle- married for so long and still so in love. So full of life. So damn good looking! Watching re-runs of Buffy episodes that are still etched in my brain from my childhood while my chlorine-scented hair dried and I laid on a soggy, pool covered towel. We may have been in Arizona- but it sure felt like back home to me
I saw the night sky in Sedona, while my sweet, teething girl snoozed away beneath millions of stars. Exhausted from flash light tag and White Claws. In awe of the vastness of the universe. My nephews sweet, fuzzy hair tickling my nose as we searched for the rings of Saturn together.