On Sunday morning following the family reunion, we checked out of the Keeter Center and headed out to Mom and Richard’s to have breakfast.  After breakfast we hung out for a while and waited for nap time to arrive.  At 12:45, we hit the road, with Carina and Craig in the truck, followed closely behind by Callen and I so that I could keep my eye on our triathalon bikes, which were mounted in the back of the truck.  Traveling at nap time turned out to be a great plan.  Carina slept for about an hour and then was pleased as punch to ride in “daddy’s truck” while intermittently watching Curious George on the portable DVD and having yelling contests with Craig.  Not that bad kind of yelling, but the apparently fun kind of yelling that girls and their fathers do when mommies are not around to put the keebosh on.  Callen literally fell asleep before I started the car and slept all the way until we stopped for lunch in Conway.  What an easy, easy trip.

After our lunch, we proceeded on to Little Rock and checked into the Embassy Suites, which felt like home away from home since it is owned by everybody’s favorite Springfield native, John Q. Hammons. Ok, maybe not, but it was pretty comfy.  We just hung out and relaxed for the evening.

In the morning we went to the closing company for our 9am closing.  I’ll just keep it brief by saying that real estate transactions are handled somewhat differently in Arkansas, and luckily our moving truck was flexible enough to delay their arrival time to our house from 8:30am to 11:00am, when we finally got access.  And just so I don’t get accused of sugar coating things, I will record for all posterity the oh-so wonderful memory of being half way through signing paper work at the closing company when I noticed Carina’s fingers had what looked like grease all over them and turned out to be something even less desireable than that. ‘nuf said.

The rest of the day was spent showing the movers which boxes went where, and getting a head start on unpacking the kitchen, in between trips back and forth to the hotel for naps.  The unloading went much faster than the load, and the unpacking will probably go on for the next couple months. We met our neighbors across the street, whose names all begin with C and who have two boys age 2 and 4.  Carina also made friends with another neighbor’s cat, who we learned later also has a name that begins with a C – Copernicus. The next day we met Copernicus’s people, who seem very friendly as well. We stayed at the Embassy Suites through Tuesday night.  It was so nice to have a fairly clean place to go back to where we could order up hot food and enjoy luxuries like internet and TV.

We only stayed at our new house one night (Wednesday) before we turned back around and headed back toward Branson on our way to Kansas City for Craig’s annual Fantasy Football draft weekend with his dental school buddies, and also for what is now going to be our annual KC meet-up with our good friends the Nords.  It was a great weekend to just relax and not have to worry about dealing with boxes, or movers, or what color to paint the bedrooms.  In fact, I was so busy relaxing, I managed to only take one picture while in KC, and it is of the back of Carina’s head.  Drat it all.

Finally, on Sunday August 24th, we returned to our home in Little Rock for a slightly longer stay.  We are enjoying having all this time together as a family to work on making our new house our home, explore Little Rock, and just generally see how many of each other’s buttons we can push.  That’s what family time is for.