Okay, I lied. The next stop was not actually Buc-ee's, it was 1984. As we headed out of Dallas and north to Oklahoma, we first had a mystery to investigate. Jacob lived in Irving, TX until he was 8 years old and we decided to go by his old house in search of a priceless artifact.
Here is the old house!
The kids and I waited in the car while Jacob went to knock on the door and announce ourselves. After no answer and then seeing a sign that said something like this,
|My kind of guy!|
Jacob stealthily went to the right side of the garage and began quickly moving some junk behind the big crape myrtle tree. After a few minutes he came back with these pictures:
Which totally qualifies him for the Best Impersonation of a low level Indiana Jones award. Cement, why's it always gotta be cement?
Back in 1984 his dad made a cement slab and had all the kids put their hand prints in it. And it was still there! Yes, we definitely thought about taking it, however, it was cemented to the actual driveway and probably could not be removed without some sort of pocket jackhammer. And we left that in Lakeland (dangit!) so we snapped the pics and said goodbye. That was probably one of the coolest moments of the entire trip. Yay, nostalgia!
The other sight I got to see in Irving besides Jacob's house, school, and creek behind his house was "Safety Town." This was a miniature town that was set up as a place where kids could ride their bikes and learn the rules of the road. Yep, that was still there too. 750,000 bonus points to Irving for not changing a bit in 22 years.
Okay, now it was time for Buc-ee's! Pronounced "Shuh-chef-ski."
Buckey's is a chain of super ultra mega huge gas stations that also double as a convenience store, car wash, deli, home goods, honky tonk, feed store, gun shop, used car, beer, bait, BBQ, barbershop, tractor parts, eight tracks, trampolines, tux rentals, grocery, video, post office, taxidermy, and laundromat. Seriously, I think I could have signed up for a Tae Kwon Do class in there. Never seen anything like it.
|This one's for you, Melinda!|
Uncle Mark told us to make sure we had some of these bad boys while we were there and I am pretty sure it only took about 5 miles to make this bag disappear.
|Like a pancake flavored Cheeto|
|We almost turned right, but that road was to Roff. Get it? To Roff? Hahahahaha, I kill me.|
Best way to announce yourself as a house guest: Luke! For throwing up in Uncle Kurt and Aunt Lori's driveway just moments after we arrived there. Yes, Jacob got out of the car with Cindy, rang the doorbell, greeted Lori with great enthusiasm and then they all came out to see why we hadn't made it to the door. Guess Jacob's Formula 1 driving was a little too much for Luke.
Best Identical Twin that Looks like Karl: Kurt! There was some really stiff competition this year, but he squeaked out the win.
|Dad, is that you?|
I have said this about our trip already to those of you I have talked to, but the trip really kept getting better and better and better as the days went on. And proof of this fact is that after all the fun we had in Dallas (which was A LOT), we arrived in Ada and realized that Lori had two horses. And chickens. AND they had a dog. And Cindy and Luke didn't remember our names after learning that.
|Cindy and Arrow, sitting in a tree|
Of course, any trip to Ada would not be complete without.....
1. Seeing these signs EVERYWHERE:
(I also win the award for Best involuntary calf muscle flexing while posing in a photo.)
|Well, alright, that was actually not involuntary.|
2. Seeing this water tower:
WHICH, I might add is totally famous. It graced the cover of country superstar Blake Shelton's 2014 album, "Bringing Back the Sunshine." He's from Ada. Otherwise that would be kinda weird.
3. Hitting up Wintersmith Park...
|I will never doubt the selfie stick again|
You will notice in the above photo that Cindy was walking Holly, Kurt and Lori's dog. A dog that couldn't get to the park unless it rode in my car. I was a little panicked about this, mostly because I am allergic to dogs and the thought of bringing allergies with me all across the country was a little scary, but she was a perfect companion and there were no repercussions afterwards. Holly gets the award for being the First, and Probably Only Dog to Ever Ride in My Car.
3. Seeing one of the "stores" that Nadine and Rufus used to own.
4. Hanging out with Grandma and looking at Grandpa Rufus' old sports articles:
5. Meeting up with these guys:
|Shane and Dianne!!!|
Shane and Dianne opened up their real estate office for a big Ada family dinner. Brisket, watermelon, corn, salad, veggies, beans, strawberry pie and Texas sheet cake. I died and went to heaven, where oddly enough I was eating more sheet cake.
Jacob got to see his cousins Dan and Scott for the first time in, like, 50 years?
Uncle Kurt then elevated himself to the status of coolest Great Uncle in the world by taking the kids to go buy fireworks. We then set them off out behind the office by the creek. Cindy had a nice view from the secret balcony.
I now present the Smiling for anyone else in the entire world but Mom and Dad Award. Gee, who could the winners be?
But wait, did I mention that before all that happened, we got to check out some of the new "toys" that Shane had lying around at the property? Well, we did!
|Old timey motorcycle|
|Golf cart on steroids|
|Beep, beep! No brakes, no insurance!|
Except for Luke, we all took a turn driving around.
Luke wasn't that interested in driving anyway, which worked out good for us because we kicked him out to go climb rocks while we really let the good times roll ;)
Best realization of a life-long dream to actually be Cinderella: Cindy! for getting up at 6am and feeding these guys before we headed out of Ada and on to our next stop.
|Breakfast time, everybody up! Hurry, hurry!|
This trip marked the 5th time I had been to Ada with Jacob and all five were awesome trips. We are treated like royalty every time we visit and we love all the awesome company. Until November, Ada!