I started this post yesterday, but then I discovered that I was too sleepy and sick to be coherent, and so I'm editing and re-writing as I go. (Yes, I caught the Camp Cold.) Expect this report to be disjointed and cold-medicine-addled.
On our way home from camp yesterday (uh, two days ago now), we made a detour over to Prince Albert and got to visit with Dixie, Marc and the whole VanderFamily! I hadn't seen Marc and Dixie since they moved away from Regina, before Madeline was born. And it was so good to see them and their hilarious kids. Dixie even cooked for us, and made her Mom's world-famous French Apple Pie! (I was pretty off-kilter because I'd caught my annual Camp Head Cold and had just tried out Dristan Nasal Mist for the first time. I was oddly relieved to find that Dixie had a cold too, because then I didn't feel like Typhoid Nellie bringing illness into their home. However, now they're dealing with Luke's ear infection and apparently he threw up red candy the day after we left, and so now I'm less relieved that they were sick as well. Poor Vandersluyses.)
Chris was hilarious about the trip. On the way there, he was pretty nervous; he hardly remembered them from when they lived in Regina, and was a little intimidated by the idea of spending an afternoon with such a clever couple. By the time we left, after he'd flown kites in the park with Marc, Madeline and Luke, and after he'd sat down with Dixie and helped to plan their vacation to Southern Saskatchewan, he was sad that we don't live near them. He declared that he wished Marc and Dixie were our neighbours, because they're the sorts of people with whom he'd like to spend all his time.
I guess this was the first time I've met bloggy people in person, and yet these two are people I knew "in real life" first, even though it had been six years since we'd seen each other and our primary interaction for a couple of years has been online. It had been so long that it was jarring to put voices to faces. It felt like I already knew their kids, from their pictures and both of their amazingly accurate descriptions of Madeline, Luke and Olivia (of course, the kids didn't feel like they knew us, and yet did a good job of making us feel welcome -- even by the end Olivia would let me play with her by myself).
You know, it was refreshing to go see the VanderFamily. Marc and Dixie are really as funny and frank as you would expect them to be, and their children as hilarious as you would expect. I like when that happens.