After a fun month, it was time to go back to Georgia. (warning: this is a bit long...but a good story to remember!) We were all so sad to leave our cousins in Utah. Andie said, "Mom - I want to stay at David's house! We can skype Dad everyday!" Isn't she considerate? She did not want to go. I told her, "Dad misses us, he loves us and wants us to come home." She said, "I want to live in Utah, I don't want to live in Georgia." It definitely was a great time.....we can't wait to go back again someday!!
So, our story of the travel home. We were supposed to fly out of SLC at 12:45. We got to the airport just before noon (cutting it close, I know.) I went to the kiosk and signed us in, to find out we weren't flying out until 2:30. (Good - I don't have to rush.) I then looked at my phone to see that our airline had called about 15 minutes earlier to tell us our flight was cancelled and we had been re-booked to 2:30. Because of this, checking bags was free - YEAH!!! So I was able to unload another bag I was planning on carrying on. This was good news.
We were about the 5th party in line to check the bags - AN HOUR LATER!!!! we made it to the counter. Everything looked good. So, we said our last goodbyes to "the other uncle tys" aka Perky aka Eric. Headed for security. It was just past 1:00, so we had just over and hour to wait for our flight. We get to the gate and find out it had been delayed another 30 minutes. Thank goodness for the portable DVD player. After yet another delay, we finally left Salt Lake at 4:00pm.
Here are the girls *finally* on the flight home - well the first flight. They did really good on the airplane! Every plane we took.
So, I called Shawn to see if he could look up our flight, if it had been delayed. He looked it up and guess what - it had been cancelled!! Fantastic - now what? The airport gave us another gate, so we only had to wait about 20 mins. rather than 2 hours. We get out and of course, no one is around to tell you what to do next. I get in line for a flight going to Canada (might as well flee the country, right?) I got up to the person and said, "I'm not going to Canada, our flight was cancelled to Atlanta and I'd like to know what my options are?" (Thinking in my mind - Yes, I'll take the hotel, dinner and free tickets you would like to offer me.") The lady said, "Well first of all, we don't offer any compensation because this is weather related." (bummer!) "They have you re-booked on a flight for 5:30pm tomorrow." In my mind I'm thinking - "Are you nuts, you do realize I'm traveling with 3 kids, by myself and you expect me to stay in an airport overnight and all day tomorrow?" So, I calmly ask, "What other options do I have?" She said, "There is a flight scheduled for 9:15, you can wait on standby for that!" So, we voted for that. It was about 7:30, that would give us plenty of time to find the gate and hopefully get some dinner.
We get to the gate to find that the flight was delayed (surprise!) until 11:00pm. (by the way: All of these delays were because of tornado threats and thunder/lightening storms IN Dallas.) So, I call Shawn, give him the current plan and then we go find some dinner. We get back to the gate about 10pm, children now getting tired. Well, the flight was delayed for an additional 45 minutes and as people were boarding at 11:45pm, I was realizing that we were not going to get on that plane. I was regretting not finding a hotel at 7:30 and somewhat enjoying a good night sleep.
Instead, here are the girls, waiting somewhat patiently as Mom tried to figure out what to do next. I asked the lady if we could fly in to Greenville, SC or Birminham, Augusta, Savannah, Columbia - ANYWHERE - the next morning, there was no way I was going to wait till 5:30pm for our flight to Atlanta. So, she booked us on a flight for 8:30am to Birminham, AL. It's about 4 hours from our home, but worth it to GET home. I really, was blessed with cooperation from my lovely daughters. If they would have been having melt downs with me, it would have not been good.
She finally fell asleep, and I tried to cozy in with Adalyn. I might have got maybe 40 minutes total worth of sleep, in about 10 minute intervals. Andie woke up around 3am and had to go to the bathroom, Ali woke up too. Fortunately, we were by this really nice old couple, whom I had to just say a prayer and put my faith in Heavenly Father as I asked the lady (who slept about as much as I did) to watch Adalyn while I took the girls to the bathroom.
We I picked up our luggage, I told the lady we were supposed to not fly in until 8:00pm that night, so I was glad our luggage had been sent on the 11pm flight the night before. She said, "Oh, you're lucky - they've been canceling flights out of Dallas this afternoon and are supposed to have a big storm again tonight, so you probably wouldn't have made it!" CRAZY!!! SO glad we decided to fly somewhere else.
We did stop at a Golden Corral on the way home for dinner (at 3:30) - we hadn't eaten all day. The girls were exited to get some food!!
Ali, I think had just enjoyed some ice cream.
I'm so grateful for the wonderful trip that we had, despite the difficult journey home. I have such a wonderful family, immediate and extended. We love them all so very much!!