We went to St. Louis, MO, to visit Lowell’s grandparents/Felicity’s godparents and had a really great time. We flew out of Connecticut, to save a few bucks, on Friday morning. When we arrived in St Louis and got to the rental car place, we were given a red Ford Mustang! That wasn’t exactly going to work with 2 carseats in the back, so we traded it for a Ford Escape. We headed straight to Grandma Basler’s for lunch, but she forgot she promised us lunch and went with Lowell’s Uncle Gene, and his wife and son, to the hospital to see Grandpa Basler. So, we drove around until we spotted a Jack In The Box. We HAD to stop and eat there as it had been ages since either one of us had eaten there, it was like eating at some exotic restaurant!! Those of you who have Jack all the time probably could care less, but those of us who know what it is and what we are missing out on will surely agree with me – YUUUM! After our exotic lunch of burgers and fries, we went to Aunt Denise’s house, Mom Schaper’s sis-in-law, where we were going to call home for the weekend. We all took a much needed nap and got up to head back to Grandma’s place. When we got there, Grandma was just getting back from the hospital and had the BIGGEST smile on her face when she saw us waiting in her driveway for her! :D We all visited, had dinner together, snapped some pictures, and called it a night heading back to Aunt Denise’s around 9:00.
On Saturday morning, we picked Mom Schaper up at the airport. After we picked her up, we went in search of some breakfast and found Sonic! Lowell was in fast food heaven by this point, Jack in the Box AND Sonic?! So, we feasted on some more “exotic” foods and went back to Grandma’s house to spend the day cleaning, eating, and having fun laughing about all sorts of great stories and things that were going on at the time. On Saturday night, we (Mom Schaper and the four of us) went to visit Grandpa Basler at the hospital. Grandpa has been in the hospital for about a month now getting treatments for cancer. He looked to be in great spirits when we got there, but it was noticable that he’s been sick and was quite tired. He was his great chipper self with lots of funny things to say as usual. He got to meet Faith and Felicity for the first time, too, so that made our little visit extra special. We left Mom there with him for the night and headed home to Aunt Denise’s. Aunt Denise was so great to let us stay with her! We were coming and going all the time, but she was always there with a smile and offering us any and everything we might need. She has four kids, her youngest, Emily, is still at home wrapping up her senior year of highschool. When we got back from the hospital and got the girls put to bed, we spent the rest of the evening talking to Aunt Denise about life and the things that make it wonderful.
On Sunday morning, we went wit Grandma to South St. Louis for Mass at St. Francis de Sales Church. It was the most beautiful church I have ever seen! I tried to take a picture to share a glimpse of this 100 y/o masterpiece, but I couldn’t get a good one without a flash :/ It was just… AMAZING, BREATH TAKING, WOW! If you are ever in St. Louis, make sure you stop by there for mass, it will make you feel closer to God than you’ve ever felt. After Mass, we went to the Union Station for lunch. It is a big train station converted into a mall! It was one of the neatest things I’ve seen. Outside the eating area was water with fountains and lots of really big gold fish. Needless to say, Faith loved the fishies! ;) After we ate, we went back to the hospital to pick Mom up and saw Grandpa for a few minutes. He got to see Grandma in a dress he bought her for the first time and couldn’t get over how beautiful she looked! She did look very lovely in it. It was black with light pink roses all over it. Grandpa called Grandma one good lookin’ girl whenever we showed him pictures from our camera of our visit. While we were there, Grandma made sure all his things were in order, his belongings were all organized and folded just the way he likes them. As he watched her do this for him, he just glowed! It is so sweet to see them so in love in their 57 years of marriage, I will never forget it :) Grandpa was pretty worn out, so we went back to Grandma’s where we spent the rest of the day taking more pictures and talking about all sorts of really fun and funny memories. That evening, Mom’s sister, Ann, came by with all her kids and shortly after that, their brother, Ted, stopped by too. Lowell’s cousins, Rose-Germaine, Julie, Catherine, Elise, and Joseph, are so much fun! They came in and fell all over our girls, literally, (Catherine actually stepped on Faith by mistake :) ) and asked Lowell all sorts of questions about what he’s been up to and all about life. It had been 4 or 5 years since they all last saw each other. Then, as most good thigs do, our night had to come to an end because our Big and Li’l F’s were very over tired. After our many good-bye’s, we headed back to Aunt Denise’s for bed.
Monday morning we woke up, got our things together, freshened up a bit, and went by Grandma’s one last time before heading to the airport. We said our good-bye’s and I love you’s to both Mom/Grandma and Grandma/Great Grandma after an hour of more laughs and more food. Grandma was always making sure we were eating! Great Grandma was so sad to see us go and kept telling us she was going to keep “her girl” (Felicity) with her and that we can just “get some more later”! We had such a great time with everyone and I especially enjoyed getting to meet most of the Basler side of the family since I’d only met Grandma and Grandpa, and Uncle Bill, up to that point. Our flight leaving St. Louis was delayed, so we missed our connecting flight in Chicago. But, We found a later flight and spent 3 hours in the O’Hare USO. A USO is a place where service members and/or their dependants can go while traveling during layovers for food, drink, computer, TV/movies, etc. We finally got to Connecticut at 8:00p and drove 2-1/2 hours home. The girls were both very good for us during the whole weekend, but most especially flying and driving home. We all had such a wonderful time and can’t wait to see everybody again!