It’s been about two weeks since I posted about Nashville, so today we’re back on the road! This time we’re off to Texas to see Trev’s brother and sister, who both live in the Dallas area. In a happy coincidence, it turned out my in-laws’ yearly Texas visit lined up with our stop there. The drive from Nashville to Frisco was uneventful. Like, really uneventful. Some of you may know Trev has a thing about Delaware (and that thing is he hates it). Every time we drive through, he complains for the whole hour it takes to get through the state and wonders aloud how anyone could ever live there. Well, on this trip I found out Arkansas is my Delaware (but seriously, how can anyone possibly live there?!). It was big and boring and mostly ugly. I hate to say it, but even the part of the Mississippi River we crossed was underwhelming. I’ve seen it in Minneapolis and Missouri and it was way prettier in both those places. Sorry Arkansas, but you’re bringing down everything around you.
I’ve never been so excited to see the Texas border. I’m not exaggerating when I say there was a visible difference crossing the state line. We were staying with Trev’s brother Geoff, his wife Lindsay, and our adorable niece and nephew, Grace and Brodie. We arrived earlier than expected, which meant we got to spend some time with the kids before they went to bed. They greeted us outside the house in a fit of kid-glee. Within minutes, I was talking superheroes with them while I got a whirlwind tour of both of their rooms. I think all of our lives would improve tremendously if we could find a way to be as excited about anything as those kids are about dinosaurs and superheroes. Actually, Trev may have been that excited about the cookie cake Brie got for us.
The next day we got to pick up Brodie at school with Lindsay, which was a treat for all of us. We got there a bit early and saw what looked like the exact same person get out of the exact same car all over the parking lot. Every mom had long blond hair and wore yoga pants. They got out of their SUVs, popped their trunks, pulled out a stroller, and headed in to get their kids. Now I know what it’s like to be stuck in a time loop. Or surrounded by clones. Or both? Lindsay let us go get Brodie and the teacher totally thought we were kid-snatchers for a second. Probably because we weren’t in clone-mom uniform. Once Brodie confirmed he knew us, we got to hear all about his day. It was pretty great seeing him get so excited and hearing about what the youth of Texas is learning these days. In particular they don’t just pledge allegiance to the U.S. flag, but also to the Texas flag. And if I do say so myself, the state pledge is not very creative. Only in Texas.
We also got to go to Brodie’s gymnastics class, which was pretty adorable. When we got there, Geoff told us to look out for the older kids in the back and he was not joking. These kids were probably 15 or so and they looked like professionals on the parallel bars and rings, flipping around with precision. It was like watching the Olympics or something.
Brodie is very into Wii bowling, so every night before bed we played a few rounds of bowling with him and Geoff. I’m pretty sure that kid would Wii bowl all day every day if he were allowed. He’s also insanely good. He crushed me every time. We also got to hear several renditions of “Let it Go” by Grace with an accompanying dance. I may be biased, but these kids are pretty much the cutest.
Lucky for us, we had two days in Frisco. On day two we got to take a family trip to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas. I was pleasantly surprised to see science in Texas is pretty much the same as it is in Boston (at least at the science museum). Brie graciously drove me, Trev, the kids, and my in-laws into the city. Brodie and Grace had so much fun checking out the dinosaurs and weather exhibits. Apparently weather/storm watching runs deep in the Sullivan blood.
After the museum, we finally went out for Mexican food. I had already spent way too much time in Texas not eating Mexican food. Thankfully, El Fenix lived up to expectations. The margaritas didn’t disappoint either. We also got to see Brie’s new apartment while we were in the city. She moved in to downtown Dallas a few months ago. Her apartment was really nice and pretty spacious. One thing I love/hate about Texas is that everything is new. It’s convenient and comfortable, but it also lacks character. Brie’s apartment was both in a convenient location and very comfortable, but I was happy it also has some character. It has a basketball court too, which was a hit with Trev and the kids, even in the rain!
*Aunt paparazzi alert!
The next morning we packed up and said our goodbyes. As we pulled away from the curb in front of Geoff and Lindsay’s house, we heard a terrible noise coming from the Jeep. We decided to pick up the dogs down the street and take a look under the hood if it still sounded bad. It wouldn’t be a cross-country road trip without some car trouble, right?
The bad news is we needed to replace some spark plugs, the silver lining was we got some extra time in Frisco.We were on a tight schedule and we needed to make it to Roswell that night in order to not screw up all of our reservations. But in all honesty, there aren’t many better places this could have happened. We were in a suburban area with lots of options for repairs and we had family there to spend the day with. To the surprise of Brie and my father-in-law, Kevin, we pulled back up to the house minutes later. Everyone else had gone out to the movies, but Brie drove us to get the car fixed while Kevin watched the dogs. The repairs only took a few hours but in that time we were able to get lunch with Brie at In-N-Out Burger, our first of the trip.
A few hours later we picked up the car and said our goodbyes again. We drove off around dusk, into the west Texas plains.