This post was started over a week ago.... so it's actually referring to events from the first weekend of October.
So, a while ago, John and I made plans to go down to Ohio on a Saturday night after John got off work and stay until Monday. We were going to see my aunt and her family. It was my nephew's 8th birthday (well, a day after it) and we were going to see them, go to the Cleveland Zoo together, and just spend some time hanging out. We attempted to do this last year, but the weather was terrible. We went to Cleveland but with 50 mph winds, the zoo and anything else outdoor was out.
Well, two days before our trip, the weather report changed to say we should expect similar weather this year. So we contemplated cancelling the trip. But because it was the only weekend we could go (the perfect storm of not having responsibilities at church, being able to take Monday off work, etc. had occurred) we decided to go and if we couldn't go to the zoo, we'd still be able to see family.
John was able to get off early on Saturday in another miracle which meant we'd be there before midnight! Success! The trip was off to a great start! But when we were less than a mile from the house, my aunt called. Her mother-in-law's husband had had a horrific accident - he fell from their barn and was unresponsive. He was not breathing on his own, but he had a pulse after being revived. She and my uncle needed to go to western Michigan. Could we still come and stay with the boys?
Of course, we said yes. We also said we would do our best to distract the boys, help them have a good time, etc.
So that's what we did. We got there around 11:00 Saturday night. Cole was sleeping. Gage was still awake. We put Gage to bed and went to bed ourselves. We were tired!
Sadly, the boys grandpa died during the night. He had shattered all but one bone in his neck (he fell directly onto his head!), never regained consciousness, never breathed on his own, and as soon as the hospital stopped pumping blood pressure medicine into him, he died within 5 minutes. We did not tell the boys, but let their parents tell them when they came home later.
We gave the boys their presents (Wii game for Cole, Legos for Gage). We hadn't been able to go down for Gage's birthday, so we still had his gift.... from March. They loved their gifts. We then got ready to go to the zoo. It was a little cold and rain was expected off and on, but we went anyway!
The Cleveland Zoo is amazing! Way better than the Detroit Zoo! We started off at the Rainforest - a nice, warm, dry, inside exhibit. :) Lots of reptiles, amphibians, monkeys, and more. We spent the most time in this building. Gage had apparently been studying the rain forest at school as throughout the trip we heard things like "Oh look. It's the canopy at the top of the rainforest. It shields much of the sunlight from hitting the wildlife on the rainforest floor" and "the bats are fascinating. Despite having no teeth, they are able to chew due to their powerful jaws!"
|The world's largest rodent|
Due to the weather, we didn't stay at the zoo as long as we would have. 50 degree weather gets pretty cold when the rain picks up! Also, when you're pregnant and have trouble walking, a few hours is really all you can take.
We saw a large cats exhibit, giraffes, aquarium, tigers, reindeer, elephants, and much more! The boys were so wiped out that they both fell asleep in the car on the way home.
We got home to find..... we were locked out of the house. That was less than ideal. We were eventually able to break into the house using a putty knife. We spent some "quiet time" resting and relaxing (I was having pain and contractions, so I laid on the couch and drank lots of water). We then had pizza for dinner and watched a movie.
Around the end of the movie, my aunt and uncle came home and they told the boys the news. They took it okay, though obviously, this was not easy for them. The funeral would be in Michigan later that week.
Monday, they all headed off for work and school. We headed home and spent the day relaxing and resting.
It was great seeing the boys and it was nice to be there when my aunt and uncle needed us, even though the weekend could have had more ideal circumstances.