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Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Nashville... Part 3

... and so today we pick up with our adventurous souls heading for IHOP for breakfast, armed with cell phones, a map and a phone book. The plan, as I learned, was to visit a local needlework shop after breakfast. Of course, considering I’d never been to an IHOP...

*waits and listens to the stunned silence as many people learn that it took until WG turned 34 to go to IHOP*

...the others in the car were a little stunned. So we went in, and sat and started to order. Our waiter was a lovely guy by the name of Junior. Well, we think his name was Junior, that’s what his tag said. Could have been anything really. I’ve got Stasha next to me on one side, Kari on the other, with Suz and Wendy across from me. And I swear, the rest of us could have had food spilled on us for all the attention that Junior was paying to Stasha.

Shameful flirt that one is, and believe me, that was just the beginning. (Yes, Stasha, I still love you.) We loved Junior, especially after he took very good care of Kari until her over medium eggs were just perfect, even if he almost spilled stuff on Wendy and myself in his eagerness to give Stasha her food. Considering the service and the fact that we were feeling pretty darn good, we tipped him well. After indulging in our calorie fest (mmmm, bacon!), we headed on to a Hobby Lobby. I just about died in the Christmas aisle and mentioned that A&B would be dragging me out of there and calling DH for assistance. That’s when we decided that a phone call to my DH was in order.

I dialed the phone and held it out to whomever was willing to take it from me, and started oooohing all over the Christmas items. Suffice it to say, I think we scared DH. Mention of need for medication was made, as was economic recovery. And that was before I got the phone and mentioned the neon pink, bright green and black ornament balls or the neon pink plastic VW Bug ornaments. Believe me folks, I love Christmas ornaments, but I’m sane about it. I like simple classy snowmen, and tasteful glass balls. I was just looking for a good excuse to scare DH, and unnerve him I think I did. And if he’d seen the 4 aisles of Christmas stuff, including the back aisle with even more balls and bulbs, I think he would have lost all hope.

We eventually wandered to the back of the store and strolled through the stitching aisles, where they know how to stock charts and store DMC. Never in a Michaels will I ever find TW Designworks charts alongside Dragon Dreams, Dimples Designs, and Silver Lining. Never. And fully kitted Mirabilias on the 50% off aisle. Amazing. Too bad there weren’t any I saw that I was dying to do else I would have picked up one and started on it right away. Kari retired to the air conditioned car after a bit; Wendy, Suz and I went to sit at the front of the store, and I found a bendable clown to unnerve Suz with – sorry, Suz, but I really couldn’t resist. After Stasha found some fabric that someone else was searching high and low for, and had her own amazing experience with nice mattering, we checked out and got out of there.

While we were driving I called the local needlework shop that we’d found in the phone book to inquire if they had Anchor floss, which they did. Unfortunately they were quite some drive away, so we skipped that and headed back for the hotel because a couple of us needed some downtime. I plopped down in my hotel room’s bar area and started stitching on Guardian, while Kari reclined on the bed, and Stasha curled up for a nap. She didn’t get much of one, but I think the relaxing downtime may have helped. We knew that Wendy’s husband Rob was on his way to us and our rooms, so we figured that this was more of a pit stop than anything else. When Rob came in the room and was introduced around, I know that he was just a touch shy and waiting to see what he’d stepped into.

It was priceless when I looked over at him and said "Hey, I’m the all powerful and knowing WhizGidget. Bow down before me NOW, dammit." Someone should have had a camera. He relaxed slightly when I said I was kidding, but I know he asked Wendy later if I was mad that he didn’t bow. Good gravy, I don’t power trip like that, but I still found it a little funny. Anyway, we packed up shortly and headed back for the market, so that some of us could shop a little more, and the others could get the charts we bought from Dimples Designs signed. I couldn’t believe that I’d forgotten to get mine signed in the first visit, but I was so gosh darn happy to see Terry again that I just walked away on a cloud because he looked so happy.

Anyway, I forgot to mention that I showed off my Phoenix to the ladies at the Picture This Plus booth – they loved it! And that reminds me, I have to email Dracolair a couple of fabric suggestions… Ok, now that that’s done… We were shopping and shopping until we decided that it was time to hit the stitcher’s lounge and socialize before dinner. We spent about 3 hours in there, and I met lots of folks from the TWBB, and managed to finish the baby sampler that I made for my friend’s baby. I met Dana, Erin, Lynne, Goldie, Cris, Ginny, Cheryl, and tons of others who I can’t even begin to remember (or find their blog links)... and am very sorry I’m forgetting the names of – but I think I met everyone who was there at dinner. I hope I did. There were many that I didn’t get to spend enough time with, but as I said to someone else in a private email earlier – better just a few minutes to hug and touch base, than to not spend any time at all.

Before dinner we decided to head back to our hotel and change/freshen up, which turned out to be a wise decision for all of us. I was really feeling sort of grungy, and appreciated the time to attempt to look more human than I felt. That and I worry about spilling food on myself when wearing shorts – not a good thing. Anyway, we changed and headed back for dinner, which was a wonderful buffet. And that’s when the real fun started. Let me set the record straight: Stasha doesn’t drink. Kari didn’t drink. I only had the mudslide (dinner and dessert all in one!). I can’t vouch for Suz, Wendy or Rob - multiples may have been involved there, but don't quote me on that. Stasha is normally that funny, but I'm pretty sure that’s the first time in history that anyone has ever made her that bright red, or forced her hand into running for the bathroom because we’d made her laugh so hard. And Suz? Man, never underestimate the power of turning a camera onto Suz – she’ll smile and her posture will improve to the point that there's a slight arch in her back. Between all of us and good bras, and the power of the "perky puppies" and the media we could probably have world peace in under 10 minutes. Anyway, I won’t repeat any of the conversation from dinner because I can’t remember it all – except for the vignette when the waitress was assigning numbers to everyone. Suz was #1, sitting at the head of the table. Wendy and Rob were a pair of #10s, and she was drinking a "red-headed slut", which is Jagermeister, Peach Schnapps and cranberry juice (told you there was cranberry juice and not Grenadine in it Wendy). I’m thinking that might make a good new title for her on the Wagon BB. Heee.

Cheryl (momstitches) started in on having something that was bad for her now that she’d finished dinner, but we convinced her that chocolate was good for her, dietary and mentally. After she saw Eduardo, the pastry chef, making the Bananas Foster she was totally convinced that a second helping would be good for her too. Heee. Stasha flirted and got her pecan puffs. I don’t know what Suz did, but I think it involved her totally engaging smile and showed off the Perky Puppies. Yes, I know that sounds bad, but honestly, we were all laughing because we knew that we’d just get what we wanted.

After dinner was over, we all headed out – some for the water show, which I happened to miss; some for the stitcher’s lounge. Our little group headed for the lounge, even though I didn’t have anything to show off or anything to stitch with me. Oh well. I passed the time socializing with folks that I hadn’t had a chance to speak to for any great length of time, and I was part of the group photo before it was time to go back to the hotel. We were all feeling pretty wiped out, and Suz was admitting that the room she was sharing with Wendy and Stasha was actually cold. Figuring this for a chain of events that could lead to the end of the world, Kari and I decided to go to our room and pack up since the next day was a travel day.

Our room was nice and comfy, and most of our things were in good order for packing, so we just cleaned up a little and then went to bed. A little bit of chatting – a very little, compared to our previous sessions and the nonstop chattering we all did while stitching in the room on the other nights – and we were pretty much out for the count until my phone went off as our alarm clock the next morning.

Tomorrow... saying goodbye, one last shopping trip, and heading for home.