Saturday we headed out on our annual scenic train ride. This is our 4th year doing this with Matt & Karen. It's always an all day kind of outing, and Matt does not like change. Which means we were going to be taking baby on a very long day of adventures. We packed up a backpack FULL of crap and hoped for the best. We left the house at 7:30am and returned home at 10:30 that night. He did really good up till dinner that night when he had a minor meltdown in a restaurant cause he had just simply had enough. Pretty good for a 7 month old!
Check out baby in the TINY fireplace! Why would you have a fireplace that small?
The morning started with the long drive to Uniontown, PA for breakfast and another short drive to The Friendship Hill House. Alfred Gallatin lived there way back when and blah, blah, blah. I'm not much of a history person so I pretty much walked around looking at the pretty stuff and playing with Sam on the lawn. The boys had a great time looking at graves and reading the 500 plaques around the house. Karen, Sam & I had a much better time rolling in the leaves on the grass.
The train ride was next. Oof. Now, this is the 4th time I have gone with the boys on a scenic train ride. They've been doing this since they were in high school, so they have many more under their belts. I'm telling you this so you can appreciate all four of us standing in the parking lot watching the train pull into the "station" with our mouths hanging open in a mix of shock and concern. The train station was an open gate in a chain link fence. The train ticket booth was a lady with a clipboard and a cash box sitting in a lawn chair under an umbrella. The two coach cars attached to the engine were dented, rusty, and you could see the faded letters spelling out "Potomac Eagle" written on the side. It should be noted that the Potomac Eagle was the train Karen & I rode on our first train ride with the boys, so by the look of things these were retired coach cars from that operation. Oh, and the brakes. The brakes on the train were so loud and screechy that everyone in the parking lot plugged their ears. It was all pretty funny and after seeing that it was kinda obvious why this is the last year this particular train ride is operating.
The train ride itself was nice. We chose to sit in the caboose so we had the option of standing outside the train on the back grate during the ride. I was nervous about taking Sam out on the grate, but for the last leg of the trip I did wrap him up snug in his Moby and take him out there. He wasn't scared! That really surprised me. He kept looking down at the ground rushing past under our feet, but he never got scared. Then he fell asleep. Asleep, with the rushing air and the clack of the track under our feet. I couldn't believe it. The train conductor for our car walked up to get a closer look and laughed as he radioed the train engineer to tell him about the "sleeping adventurer" on board.
The train was supposed to be going to a pumpkin patch with a 40 minute layover while us passengers could roam around and get hot chocolate. There was no pumpkin patch, but there was a cute little town with an ice cream parlor so it was all good. But what a strange train operation!
From there we started to head home (train ride lasted an extra hour beyond what it was advertised). The stop for dinner was a bit stressful. I didn't get to eat much since I was walking Sam back and forth next to our table. And of course the stinker fell asleep as soon as the check came and everyone else was ready to leave. But really, I'm proud of him for lasting that LONG day with lots of new experiences and being such a trooper about it. I'm so glad baby is chill.
Then Sunday we spent playing with baby, carving pumpkins, and decorating the house for Halloween! Every year, two weeks before Halloween, Morgan groans and watches from the front door as I go ape shit on the front yard. Halloween is my thing. It's the best holiday of the year, as far as I'm concerned. And even though he gets a little embarrassed having to park his car next to a cemetery and walk past rubber rats to get into his house, I know he likes it too. And with this being Sam's first Halloween, I went a bit overboard. Just a bit.
I think I partially blame Pinterest for the overboardness of this year's pumpkin carving. I mean, you know I'm not that creative on my own! Although I did come up with the following in my own little brain. Mainly because I have a need to have as many photos as possible of him that will make him blush when I show them to his future girlfriends. Behold! The OMG SQUEE HEADSPLODE photos!
"No, Mom! Don't show those to Amanda! Gosh, I hate you SO much!!!"