Saturday, August 1, 2009

Breakfast with Grandpa

Ev and I loaded up early and headed up the interstate to the Boondocks. We were meeting Grandpa Ray for breakfast. He pulled in right behind us, so even tho we were late, he was technically later.

I wanted to see Dad, but I could tell he really wanted to spend some time with Evan. I excused myself to go to the restroom and wandered around the attached convenience store. When I returned they were talking about teaching. Evan was asking my father such thoughtful questions about his experiences as a teacher. Dad's first teaching gig was in Ida Grove, IA in 1951. He was hired by the superintendent because he played basketball for Primghar High and he was willing to coach in addition to his appointment as high school math teacher. I remember a time when he refereed and even drove the school bus to the game!

Evan was eating it up. I left again a little later, just so they could talk alone some more. This was one of the first times in a long, long while that both Ev and I sat entranced listening to these new stories.

After enjoying a great breakfast with Grandpa, it was time to part. We said our goodbyes, enjoyed hugs all around, and loaded into the Mini. I asked Ev if he wanted the slow trip home or the fast one on the interstate. He shook his head, "Mom, do you even have to ask?" We headed west, over to the state highway. We made one stop along the way at an old junk shop. We shopped together for awhile, then apart, then together again. Ev found a old picture for his new digs, an old tin box, and a valentine written from Virgil to Lorraine Luppes in 1929. I am sure Ev must have a young woman in mind ;)

On our way into town, we found a local grower who was selling his sweet corn out of the back of his pickup. One dozen ears of Peaches 'n Cream, please. I am a woman hungry for corn....

Friday, July 31, 2009

Me vs. Mom vs. Me

Well, I am back to being Mom again. I rousted the youngsters about 10, then we headed out for dental appointmets, grocery shopping, ping-pong table assembly at Yia-Yia's, lunch at a favorite cafe, drive-up banking, and a quick stop at the library.
SOLO on August 10th!

I have to be honest. Two weeks without family was nice. They went to Greece. I went to Chicago and St. Louis, with a few day trips here and there. I made a list back in April: Things to Do on My Summer Vacation... and I pretty much nailed it, with the exception of a few odds and ends. Like paint touch-ups on the house before school starts and the neighborhood garbage sale Aug. 7-8th.

Tess starts swimming camp on Monday. She'll finish up her clarinet lessons, then start girls' swim season at Ames High School. Oh, and the biggie is that she will start driving on the 10th of August. She got her school permit this summer, so she is legal to drive BY HERSELF! to and from school functions. Yikes!!

Ev will go back to Iowa City this Monday. He said, "Early", so I am holding him to it. By the time we arrive, it will be close to lunchtime; we'll go eat Pad Thai, then I will drop him at his new digs. He claims his roommate will help him move from the storage unit, so I am off the hook! I should be done with him around 12:30 and then it's just Me again, not Mom, for a few more hours...

Postcard Friendship Friday

Thursday, July 30, 2009

One Down, Two to Go.....

Tess, Paul, and Evan have been vacationing in Greece. This is my husband's mother's homeland and he wanted to take the kids there to experience the Angelos family ancestry.

Like chickens coming home to roost, my family is slowly circling, making their way back. Late Monday morning, my husband called and spoke in his usual, calm demeanor. The news was anything but. He had just been pick pocketed and wanted me to call the bank and two credit card companies to report the theft. I am thankful I was home and by the phone to receive his call. He reported that they would be home in two days, and that Ev had his debit/credit card. Could I please transfer $$$ into Ev's account? They could get home on that.

Their fight was to arrive at the Des Moines International Airport Wednesday night. I had their flight numbers, so throughout the day, I followed their journey from around the globe. Early evening, the phone rang. It was Evan reporting that they had arrived in Atlanta and would be home before midnight.

An hour before I was to leave for the airport, another call. Even tho they had these plane reservations for 3 months, the plane was overbooked. Only one of the three of them could get on the plane. Paul stressed that he was putting Tess on the plane because "she needed to get home", i.e. she was having a meltdown! No sleep in 24 hours and being marooned in Atlanta, GA was more than she could handle. I could hear just a bit of the edge in his even tone. He needed to get her on that plane!

Twenty minutes passed, and the phone rang again. He wanted me to find his itinerary for his Thursday flight to Dallas for a one-day business meeting. The original plan was that he would get home from vacation late Wednesday, fly back out early Thursday morning for the noon meeting, then return on Friday night. Now things were getting jumbled. He was traveling to an important meeting with no credit cards, very little money, and dirty laundry. This was not my husband's style, but what a trooper.

Number 1 is home. I retrieved Tess late last night. She was sound asleep by 1 AM this morning and just got up for some peanut butter toast. She offered that her dad had mentioned he had one clean white shirt, but only dirty khaki shorts to wear to his meeting. Somehow, I know my husband will pull it off.

Paul was able to reroute to Dallas from Atlanta, leaving Ev in Atlanta. This is the son who traveled solo on bike, train, and bus throughout India last semester. With a taxi voucher to and from a hotel, three food vouchers, AND a $400 voucher for any flight within the US, he was in Seventh Heaven! But there was another glitch. Ev was placed on standby for a noon flight. If he could not get on that one, he would have to wait until 3 pm to catch another. His luggage came home with us, so the poor guy did not have any toiletries or clean clothes. He did have his backpack and I know for a fact that it is always loaded with books!

This is turning into quite the little adventure. When I checked the flight status this morning, his standby flight was delayed for 2 hours. But just minutes late, the phone rang and it was my son, sounding wonderful and cheery. He got the last seat, they are on the tarmac, and he is heading home! I leave for the airport in an hour and will gladly welcome home Number 2.