Billie Hollidaysburg

The problem with going to see your friend and her daughter in Hollidaysburg, PA, for your friend’s 40somethingth birthday is that you and your girl children have so much fun that Monday finds you desperately hoping not to nod off and faceplant on your keyboard.

Or maybe that’s just me.

Driving Route 22, which is how we usually go to Hollidaysburg, is always interesting. Places with names like Mundy’s Corner and Nanty Glo (Welsh for “seams of coal” — h/t to @shadow), roadside strip bars (I’m thankful Flora spent a lot of time playing her DSi and Kate can’t read yet), and my personal favorite sighting: a barn-like structure that advertised on the side “Live Bait!” and “Tattoos and Piercings.”

Um, no thank you.

And then, once we arrived, we had a picnic lunch at a state park (Canoe Cabin State Park?), played in the sand, swam (okay, I didn’t swim, but I did go in the water to play with the kids a bit; it was really cold! — oh, I bought new swim suits!), the girls ate their weight in cheese puff balls and homemade chocolate chip cookies (not homemade by me, made by my friend’s friend). After a few hours, we picked up all the toys, went back to the house and cleaned up, put on dresses, made dinner, drank wine and beers, ate, nattered endlessly about our lives, let the children stay up way too late (Kate actually fell asleep on the couch), and then stayed up too late ourselves.

It was really delightful. Although I got the stupidest looking sunburn ever on my nose. Seriously.

My friend has made lovely friends in this tiny corner of Pennsylvania, and I’m glad we got to meet them. I’m glad on Sunday we went to church and sat in the choir loft, bought ice cream and coffee at the corner gas station, and let the girls play some more while eating leftovers for lunch. I’m glad that Kate passed out in the car, her fingers and lips dusted bright orange from our car snack of cheese puff balls, and Flora played the DSi while wearing ear plugs (Kate snores). I’m glad that my boys were glad to see us when we got home, and I’m glad that while I made mac ‘n’ cheese for the children, Dan picked up dinner for us at Mad Mex.

Being this tired is worth it if it comes with weekends like that.