Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Nora and Cal

Video of Cousin Cal holding Nora the day she was born.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

"It better get better" and the Honey Tree Inn

We had a family reunion this weekend in Searcy, Arkansas, and the entire weekend all I heard about was how my new blog "better get better." Thank you to Betsy, Ben, and others for that. Although I blamed it on Amanda's insistence I do this thing in the first place, I am still feeling the pressure.

Amanda, Nora and I started things off early this weekend by heading towards Arkansas on Thursday evening with my dad and Mary (my youngest sister). She is a high school senior and wanted to check out Harding (don't ask me why). Most of my conversation with Mary this weekend revolved around the fact that it will be great that she will only have to drive 6 hours to see her niece next year while at Harding, as well as other completely negative and biased things against Harding in general.

When adding up the quality time spent with family, full-court indoor gym soccer games (Oh for video footage of Amanda falling to the ground on 2 consecutive kicks.), a 62-55 FOOTBALL game between the Harding Bisons and the Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys (I didn't make that up...check the link), and all the "cool" new things learned about the extended family, it was a fun weekend.

But the best part of the weekend was certainly the stay at the Honeytree Inn in Searcy. Here's how it happened: My great-Aunt Maxine called all the hotels in Searcy to try and find 10 rooms available. After finding all the "good" hotels in town were booked (for homecoming weekend), she ended up finding rooms at the Honey Tree Inn. The outward appearance was certainly something, as it was shaped like a bee-hive. Walking up to the front door, we were greeted by a sign that said, "No smoking within 15 feet of the door." Oddly enough, we then walked in to discover a smell of smoke that filled the entire place, including our "non-smoking" rooms. These rooms featured TV's from the 80s (with no remotes) that were hardly viewable from either of the 2 beds in each room. One room had duct tape to mend a tear in the carpet, while another had thumb tacks and nails holding the wallpaper up in the bathroom. Amanda actually took Nora to check-in by herself and take a nap while I was taking care of some other business (playing a game of 3-on-3 basketball). Nora was screaming, and when Amanda asked if they really needed her license plate number, the "lady" at the frontdesk asked if Amanda wanted her to hold Nora while Amanda went to write down the license plate number. Yeah...that was gonna happen.

The highlight of the Honey Tree Inn, however, did not even have a close second. My Aunt Shelley went in the bathroom to take a shower and found there was no shampoo in the shower. Thinking the hotel simply forgot to put some in her room, she went to the frontdesk to ask for some. Their response was to hand her a half-used bottle of VO5 with the instructions, "Make sure you bring it back when you're done." I washed my hair with Amanda's "Curls Rock."

Benny, Betsy, let me know how I did.