Utah For Science!

Thumper and I left for the airport at the crack of dawn Saturday morning.  Our flight to Salt Lake City was scheduled for 7:10 am, so we left the house at 5 am.  The Webmaster drove us there, while Grandma rested on the couch for adult supervision purposes.  Since this was only an overnight trip, we were traveling very light – one carry-on suitcase, the diaper bag, and my purse.  And because Thumper is now two, he got his own seat.

On our way to Utah

He was pretty good on the way there, and the non-stop flight is about an hour and 45 minutes.  I had some doing to convince him that he really did need to wear headphones in order to listen to the iPad, but he eventually caught on.  We landed right on time, and then took a shuttle van to our hotel.  I was hoping that since we’d had such an early morning, Thumper would drop off for a good nap (and then I could rest, too).

Well, Thumper did nap…. for just under an hour.

I was dead on my feet, but I had to keep him occupied.  This is when I discovered that I’d made a major mistake – I’d failed to pack any of Thumper’s toys, aside from two of his stuffed animals for bedtime.  Oops.  Mommy had screwed up.  But since we were both hungry, we walked over to the Red Robin next door for lunch.  I had been hoping to make this a big meal (late lunch/early dinner), but it was a little too early for that.

Having a glass of water

Thumper ended up eating his weight in fries, and discovering that he really, really, REALLY likes Red Robin’s Campfire sauce.  They served it automatically with the fries there, and Thumper stuck a fry in the sauce and licked it.  Well, it was all over.  He dove in and was eating that sauce like there was no tomorrow.  He was using the fry like a spoon to eat it.  I was dying of laughter while being simultaneously stunned that he was so in love with the stuff!

In an effort to kill even more time, we walked across the street to the nearby strip mall.  I had done a little research ahead of time and discovered that there was a cupcake shop there – and not just any cupcake shop, but one that had competed and won Food Network’s Cupcake Wars show, Sweet Tooth Fairy.  Ane was kind of miffed that she was going to miss out on this part.  But I took pictures for her.


They also sold “cakebites” – bite-sized and chocolate-coated pieces of cake in their best flavors.  I brought back a half-dozen for Ane to try, since I knew that would be the best kind of souvenir for her.  And since they didn’t have frosting on them, they traveled quite easily!


Thumper and I shared a cupcake (I chose Key Lime Pie).  I was just trying to kill time, because the MRI appointment wasn’t scheduled until 9 pm, and we were supposed to be there, at the neurology center on the University of Utah campus, at 8:30.  So I decided to give Thumper a long bath and begin to prepare him to wind down.

Yeah, can’t really give him a bath when the tub won’t plug.  Maintenance was called, and the poor guy, after 30 minutes of working on the drain plug, finally told me that the catch had become disconnected from the plug and the drainpipe, and there wasn’t a way to fix it quickly, so…. he was going to run over to Wal-Mart and get me a drain cover.  Well, that was fine by me, but by that time, Thumper was out of the mood for a bath and playing in the water.  I washed him up anyway, got him all ready, and then went down to the lobby to wait for the cab.

And the cab was already waiting.  I had asked the front desk to call the cab at 7:45.  They scheduled the cab to show up at 7:45.  This required a little scrambling and a phone call to the research team on my part, since it was the weekend and the neurology center wasn’t open.  A friend of the lead doctor on the team showed up to greet me and wait, while Dr. D, the research doctor we’ve been working with all these years, and Mandy, the MRI technician who runs all the scans, collected their stuff and hustled over.  Which was a good thing, because Thumper had tried to fall asleep during the 5 minute cab ride over.  I got him dressed in the parking lot while we waited in his 2 piece thermal jammies (no metal snaps allowed in the MRI machine) in order to keep him awake.  He caught a little of a second wind once we were inside and getting ready, but by the time I had him in the MRI room, with the door closed and all snuggled in a blanket, rocking him and singing his bedtime songs, he crashed within 15 minutes.

He was so tired that he slept like a rock through the entire set of scans – which takes about an hour to complete.  And when we were done, he was still out like a light.  It was almost too bad they couldn’t run any more scans on him!  And then he slept all the way back to the hotel, where I tucked him into the hotel pack’n’play for the night.  We got back to the hotel at about 10:30 pm.  He woke up at 6 am the next morning, confused and upset, so I picked him up and took him to my bed, where he fell back asleep.

Sleepy baby

I finally had to wake him up to get him dressed, but only after I was pretty much all packed up and ready.  We checked out and had our continental breakfast down in the lobby, while we waited for our shuttle van to pick us up and take us to the airport.  The van arrived on time, and in no time at all, we were back at the airport, waiting for our flight home.  And this time, Thumper got the window seat on the plane.

Veteran flyer

The Webmaster and the older three picked us up at the airport, and the second we got in the door at home, Thumper walked straight to the back door, wanting to go play outside in his OWN yard.

And I took a nap.

Our Utah adventure for science had been a success!

2 Responses to “Utah For Science!”

  1. Nana
    May 26th, 2015 07:19

    Our little Hero and his Mom!

  2. Deanna's Corner » Blog Archive » If One Was Fun, Two Is Even Better, Right?
    January 14th, 2016 07:21

    […] diagnosis was again confirmed by the infant brain study program when he turned two (and we got a trip to Utah that time).  And we also put our name on the waiting list for the next available ABA therapist at […]