Thursday, February 17, 2011

ESPN, grieving, and Tampa - otherwise known as my longest post ever

Woo boy, has it been awhile since I've posted. So much has happened... I must catch you up on the crazy, busy, exhausting past 2 weeks. It all began two weekends ago... We spent a quiet Friday night at home but Saturday was full of activities - Seeger's tae kwon do (referred to as TKD from here on out - just because I have think too hard to remember how to spell it) and Nicklas and I had a research study to participate in on campus. After, I made a few appetizers for the evening and then we headed to the IU baseketball game. The reason for the apps... stuffed mushrooms, fruit pizza and something else I don't remember... for game night with some friends. Sunday was LAUNDRY and Nick's hockey practice. I had great intentions of cleaning the apartment but chose to spend time with family instead. I knew I should have done it but I didn't. And I regretted it. Because Monday and Tuesday were busy with activities. Actually, we had a quiet evening at home on Monday so I should have cleaned the apartment then BUT I didn't. I don't remember why. I'm sure I had a good reason. Tuesday was the PTO meeting, TKD, and Nick's first basketball game. His team won and he played great defense.

So obviously, I didn't have time clean on Tuesday.

Wednesday was the closing on our land/future house. Exciting! (Although, while we were at the closing, we got a call from Nicklas who informed that Seeger had taken the bus home instead of going to aftercare so GASP, he was home alone - well with Nicklas - but that's bad. And it was his teacher's fault because I had written a note to tell her he should go to aftercare and she got the note but she "neglected to see that Seeger got in the wrong line" and she was very sorry "but sometimes he is forgetful". Forgetful? FORGETFUL? You make a mistake lady and your blaming a SIX YEAR OLD?!) So yeah, no cleaning on Wednesday.

And I felt bad because I knew that the following Tuesday, I was headed out of town for a week and the Polack's parents were coming to stay with him and the boys to help out. And our apartment was dirty and we didn't have any food in the house. So I needed to clean and shop and have everything ready for guests. And I knew I had some upcoming busy days so I decide that I'll do all the cleaning and shopping on the upcoming Sunday, pretty much the only free day I have. Sounds good, right? I love having a plan.

Then Thursday comes. On Thursday evening, the Polack and I went to the builder to pick out all of the stuff for our house... carpet, cabinets, wood floors, sinks, shutters, siding. The whole kitten kaboodle. (Does anyone ever say that anymore? It's so 1980's.) Everyone says that this is the worst part about building a house because of the fighting that occurs when two people can't agree between sandstone and merlot. So with each choice, the Polack and I internally picked out our favorite, said "one, two, three" and pointed to our favorites. And each time WE PICKED THE SAME THING. Except one time but it was settle amicably. Cause we're cool like that. For the record, it's dark tan siding with black shutters and merlot cabinets with dark countertops.

And let's black track a bit. Just before all the choosing, the Polack gets a phone call from his dad and finds out that Uncle Tom has passed away. So sad. We knew the call would probably happen soon but it definitely didn't make it any easier. Uncle Tom was the T family patriarch. So in the midst of all the choosing and decisions and what not, we are makings plans to take the trek to Detroit for the funeral.

So after our appointment with the builder, it's pretty late and we head home BUT because I was going to spend the next days hosting some VIP's, I have to stop at the car wash to clean my salt covered car. And vacuum the inside. And armoral everything. Just what I wanted to be doing in 20 degree weather at 8:00 at night.

Oh and I forgot to mention what the boys did all day... Nicklas got home from school and our new awesome babysitter (who is a local so she is around during spring break and summer woo hoo!) met him and waited for Seeger to get off the bus. Then she helped them with their homework and walked Seeger down the street to TKD. Then she made them dinner. Did I mention she's awesome? I would seriously pay her every day if it meant she helped with homework and cooked dinner!

So the next day... the first VIP I spend the day with is Sage Steele. She happens to be an IU grad and we've invited her back to campus to receive a distinguished alumni award. Since we flew her here all the way away from Connecticut, I packed her schedule for the two days she was campus. I spent the Friday driving, walking, dragging her from place to place. And she is AWESOME. So gracious and so open to talk to anyone and never wanting to leave until she answered every question and posed for every picture. And since we have the same kind of car, we both have son's named Nicklas/Nicholas, and we both met our husbands at IU, I definitely think were soul sisters. Or at least, I want to be just like her when I grow up.

Friday night was the Boy Scout Blue and Gold Banquet. Pitch in = no cooking. Woo hoo! Nicklas loved the all you can eat pizza and Seeger was so proud to receive his next badge.

Saturday was another work day for me. Nicklas and I hosted some students and Sage for lunch. The students freaked out about the menu because they didn't know what any of the options were - except Macaroni and Cheese. Nicklas did much better... he ordered Calamari. He also wowed the group as he was reciting statistics from previous sporting events that he had attended. Sage wants to hire him to help her out! After lunch we did some tours on campus and returned folks to their respective places as I headed back to campus to pick up our next VIP, Dominique Dawes. Dominique isn't an alum but we paid to bring her to campus to serve as a keynote speaker for our event. So I had to drive her to a community Q&A and then to big event. By the time the event came around, I was exhausted from constantly being "on" the past two days. Luckily, I snagged a drink ticket, got myself a glass of wine, and chowed down on dinner. I also ate two deserts. So there.

My Sunday cleaning plan didn't happen. We got up early and made the trip to Detroit for Uncle Tom's showing on Sunday and funeral Monday. It was a long drive but the boys were awesome. Praise the lord for portable DVD players and the Nintendo dsi. We spent two days with family, relaying memories about Uncle Tom, eating at Big Boy, and crying. Lots of crying for me anyway. This was the first funeral Nick attended where he actually knew the person. We spent 8 hours at the showing and right as we were leaving, Seeger looked at the casket and asked if Uncle Tom was a real person. After showing we headed to my aunt and uncle's house who also happen to live in Detroit. Well close enough anyway. Next day was funeral 0 they played Taps so that made me cry a whole bunch more - a meal at the Hazel Park Lion's Club, and then we headed home. My mom happens to live half way between Bloomingotn and Detroit so we were able to make a quick stop for dinner at Culver's. She wanted to go to my favorite restaurant - Casa d'Angelo's - but it was Valentine's Day so she decided against. Oh yeah... Valentine's Day. We arrived at home around 11pm Monday evening. Thank god, the boys feel asleep before we got to Indianapolis. So we go to bed and the next morning the Polack goes to work. (He was exhausted I'm sure. I don't know for certain though because I was still asleep when he left.) I got the kids off to school and then unpacked and repacked myself. Because I had a 7 day work trip to begin. So now I'm in Tampa. I'm spending three days at a conference, two days doing donor visits, and one day attending an IU Alumni Association event. Good times I tell ya. Everyone is all, 'oh you're so lucky, you're in Florida.' But when I'm here by myself, it's definitley not as fun. Actually, I'm not by myself. My Dean is here. So that's almost worse because I have to be "on" around him all the time. So after spending two days holed up in the conference hotel, I made myself go outside and spend a few hours by the pool today. I took my lap top and got a lot of emails taken care of. Tomorrow the conference ends at noon and we're changing hotels. It will be relatively relaxing. Saturday, we're driving three hours to visit a donor who lives on Lake Okeechobee. He's an interesting character but he's going to take us out on his boat so I'm really looking forward to that. I'm a lake girl after all. When I was making plans with us, he said it was too bad he didn't have any frog legs to prepare for our visit. And he was serious. Eww.

The Dean leaves on Sunday and I'm here until Tuesday. I'll have most of Monday to myself so I asked a local what I should do. He wrote me a list:
Busch Gardens
St. Pete/Clearwater Beaches
Dali Museum
Tampa Museum of Art
Billy Elliott at Straz Performing Arts
Outlet Mall in Ellentown
Ybor City - historic Tampa
Lowery Park Zoo

I'm not feeling beach prepared. No sunscreen or blanket or chair or anyting so that's out. And I don't want to pay for Busch Gardens. I've seen Billy Elliott. I'm not a big Dali fan. I will happen to be at the Tampa Museum of Art for the alumni event on Monday so that's something I can check off the list. I think I'll try Ybar City Sunday evening, after I drop off the Dean at the airport. That leaves the Outlet Mall and Zoo and I figure the Zoo will be cheaper. That's my plan for now anyway!


Becky J said...

FYI - Be careful of Ybor city by yourself at night. When I was in Tampa, the conference advised us not to go there at night alone. There are a lot of muggings. But have fun. :)

Christy said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your Uncle Tom.

You have been busy, busy. No wonder you have been MIA. Looking forward to seeing you next week!