A whirlwind of a weekend.

Leave Indy early Saturday, just ahead of a quick burst of snow, heading west through rain and dreary skies. Our traditional lunch stop at the St. Louis Bread Company in Maryland Heights. Into sun and warmth in western Missouri. Finally arriving at our home base for the weekend in Overland Park.

That evening, dinner with friends from S.’s days as a resident. Minsky’s pizza and Boulevard beer.

Sunday morning, an early trip to Legoland in Crown Center. We were a little frustrated by the ticket purchasing and entry process, which takes way too long. But once inside, the girls loved it. I thought the area where many of the architectural landmarks of Kansas City are recreated using Lego was fantastic.

I tried to push a couple of my favorite spots for lunch, but the girls weren’t having it. So, much to my chagrin, we ate at Kona Grill. I say chagrin not because Kona isn’t good; it’s perfectly fine. But we have one about 10 minutes from our house. We can go there any time. The saving grace was it was a gorgeous day so we were able to eat outside. Followed that with a quick stroll around the Plaza and swings by S.’s and my old apartments. Sadly M. remembered that there had been an explosion not too far from S.’s old place so we had to point out the remains of the late J.J.’s as we drove by.

Next, our friends the Belfords were kind enough to host the big get-together of the weekend. We saw lots of good people there. The catching-up is always far too brief, but I’m grateful we get the chance to do it. It was fun watching the 50 or 60 kids that were running around.

All three girls were pretty quick to find kids to pal around with. But M. was especially funny to watch. See was super excited to see her old friends Caroline and Mia. Then throw new friend Liza, who she had met before but not spent much time with, and suddenly there was a flock of 7-9 year old girls acting like they were the oldest of friends.

Everyone was worn out as we headed back to the hotel, but we needed some food. Fortunately, there was a D’Bronx right around the corner. First time I’ve had a hot Wild Bill in six or seven years. And it was taaaaasty.

Monday, lunch at Oklahoma Joe’s. As much as I wanted to go with one of my usuals, it was a burnt end day, and I had never sampled their burnt ends before. So I got the platter. They were awfully damn good.

We did some light shopping afterward. Well, light at first. The girls got new outfits at the Gap since it was warmer than we expected and we hadn’t brought clothes for the heat. Dad got another KU shirt for his collection.

I also made a rather controversial choice for my hat for the spring. I bought a plain Royals hat. I honestly don’t remember the last time I had a (replica) hat like the team wears. I’ve had a whole swath of KC Monarchs hats. I’ve had a couple “fashion” Royals hats in non-traditional colors. But it seriously may have been since high school, or even middle school, since I had the royal blue cap with the white KC on the front.

The Royals promptly blew a two-run lead and lost their season opener 4-3. Blame the cap.

Then it was over to Oak Park Mall, where the shopping got serious at the American Girl Doll store. We didn’t plan on going, so the girls had not brought their dolls. They still managed to spend some money despite that hurdle. They also rode the two-story carrousel, which they thought was amazing. And I ran into a guy who grew up across the street from me. Which wasn’t awkward at all as he A) recognized me and I did not recognize him, B) he remembered my name, and C) I now realize he’s probably either mildly autistic or has Aspergers or something. It was an odd conversation. At least it wasn’t one of the hundreds of scorned women I left in my wake during my single days! Amirite?!?!

And, finally, Monday night we visited the Nesbitts of Jackson County, or at least a good chunk of them.

We were up before the sun Tuesday, to ensure we didn’t get stuck in rush hour in Indy on the way home. We rolled into the neighborhood after seven-and-a-half hours, a new record with kids in the car.

We are grateful for all our friends who took time to host us and/or spend time with us. These trips don’t happen often enough, nor last long enough. In fact, as I write this on Tuesday night, I’m realizing I only took a few photos all weekend, and those are mostly of the kids in front of things in Legoland.

The girls had a great time. In fact, between the weather – they think every day in Kansas City is sunny and 70 – their friends, and the American Girl doll store, they think it’s the best place ever. C. even said when she grows up she’s going to live there.

And now we’re in the midst of the mad dash to get the house ready for the girls’ four-year-old and two-year-old cousins who are visiting from Denver.