Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Livingstones, I Presume

I know I’m a day late in posting. I think I’ve come down with the post vacation blues. I could be wrong, but the fact that I picked all the M&Ms out of a bag of trail mix leads me to believe it’s the doldrums. I'll make it up to you with a Wednesday Random Six. Forgive me, Fellow Adventurers?

1. When you count the people you love who aren’t blood relatives, who do you count? The Intrigues just took a ten day vacation with some people on our list. After ten days, they’re not only still on the list, but they've moved up a few spaces. We first met The Livingstones two combined kids ago, while living in Sri Lanka. They were present for many adventures, and were first featured on the blog in Monsoon Dinner Theater. As you age and your family changes, it’s harder and harder to find friends who mesh with you, especially entire families who mesh with your entire family. The Livingstones and The Intrigues are a perfect match. All four adults enjoy each other’s company in any given combination or pairing. All seven kids can wander off and play for hours without arguing. The downside of our friendship is that this little vacation we just shared took place in between The Livingstone's assignment in Sri Lanka and their next assignment in Zimbabwe. Distance is a bummer, as all you Fellow Adventurers who move on a regular basis understand.

2. The three Livingstone kids are all girls, so we’ll name them after the three fairies from sleeping beauty- Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather. Flora is six months younger than Gertrude Bell. Fauna is six months younger than Arthur Dent. Merryweather is, you guessed it, six months younger than Laura Ingalls Wilder. The adults have high hopes for a possible Intrigue-Livingstone merger in the form of a marriage twenty or so years down the road between Arthur Dent and one of the little Livingstones. Should that happen, all future holidays will be spent with the happy couple and they will never have to worry about splitting their time between families, since each set of in-laws will insist the other be present!

3. Whenever Mr. Livingstone and The International Man of Intrigue get together, they manage to invent games that involve throwing things. In Sri Lanka, when both families were quarantined with Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease, (more severe than its North American contagious disease counterpart) they invented a game called “CrocShoes,” which was a lot like horseshoes, but with more ridiculous rules. This time around, as we sat in the hallway of the hotel at Disney World, drinking beer and whispering to keep from waking the kids who were sleeping on the other side of the doors, Mr. Livingstone and The International Man of Intrigue invented “Ninja Card,” the basic gist of which is seeing who can fling a hotel key further. 

4. Speaking of putting babies to sleep, Laura Ingalls Wilder was less than cooperative upon being asked to sleep in a pack and play at the hotel and at the beach house. Fortunately, there’s an app for that. White noise apps are a thing, which is amazing and something every traveling parent should know!

5. Proof that The Livingstones and The Intrigues parent in a similar fashion came on one of our last days together. Mrs. Livingstone and I were standing in the kitchen, talking over coffee. She looked at me and said, “We’re just tuning it out.” I looked at her questioningly. She said, “You know, the babies?” It was then that I tuned into the fact that both Laura Ingalls Wilder and Merryweather were both splayed out on the kitchen floor, throwing temper tantrums. I can't end this without noting that The International Man of Intrigue described Merryweather as "squishy and soft, like a marshmallow." She really is a perfectly chubby one year old.

6. Yesterday, we hugged and fought back tears as we sent The Livingstones off in a van, weighed down with suitcases, to catch their flight to Zimbabwe. The Intrigues love you, Livingstones! Godspeed! If you have Livingstones in your life, take a minute to tell them you appreciate them!

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