Home Alone

Vince went back to work for the first time since Friday. Chad is still sleeping. Speck has finally calmed down and is asleep. The Christmas decorations are mostly packed away. XM has been turned back to it’s regular station, Christmas music will not be heard again for about 11 months.

Part of me feels good to be home alone and part of me is fighting back tears. When Mom and Dad leave or when I leave them, I always cry. I remember as a kid we would go to my grandma and grandpa’s house 100 miles away almost every weekend. Every Sunday afternoon when we’d leave, Mom would cry; my grandma would cry and being the weenie that I am, even as a little kid, I’d sit in the back seat of that big old Buick and I’d cry too. Didn’t have a clue why but I guess if everyone else was going to cry, I might as well too. Today, about 50 years later, I’m still crying when we go our separate ways and I don’t even know why. Chad and I will go home for Spring Break so it’s just a few months before I see them again and I talk to them every day so .. I’m just being a wimp. As much as I love living in Missouri, I hate living so far away from Mom and Dad. If I could just live where we’re 4 or 5 hours — an easy drive — things would be so much better.

Despite my best plans, I didn’t think about Speck being so unfriendly until right before they got here. When they got here on Friday night, it was constant growling, snarling, showing teeth and trying to get at them. I had given them each some banana to give to him. He loves bananas! Mom was so scared of him I think she was ready to leave about an hour after they got here so we finally stuck the crate in the master bathroom and put him in there for an hour or so. I guess he decided to be nice because when we got him out of the crate later that night, he was ok. He was never friendly enough that Dad could touch him but he did hop up in the recliner and sit with Mom for a while. Dad fed him from the table so Speck was his best friend as long as Dad was eating.

We had a great visit except for a just a few bumps along the road. Put my south Louisiana family together with Vince’s Sicilian heritage and it’s a mix about like oil and water. I’m constantly on edge explaining to Mom that Vince didn’t mean it like it sounded to her and explaining to Vince that Mom doesn’t hate him and everyone just does things and says things differently.

I think the highlight for Mom was Interior Motives. Mom bought one of the W. F. Norman framed tins (the same one I have, in fact), along with quite a bit of other stuff. I think she’s already planning to go home and re-do some of her rooms so she can come back here and shop.

Dad got to see snow so he was happy, although he swears he’ll never come back here in the winter. He and Vince went over to Ft. Scott, KS so Dad could say he’d been to Kansas. They ended up walking through the buildings on the fort and I think he enjoyed that. I’m not sure he ever got warm. Last night he had his wool socks I’d made for him over his regular cotton socks trying to get his feet warm!

My menu plan went perfectly. I had thought they were staying through Friday so I had food planned for today too and then yesterday, they just wanted more turkey and dressing and asked me not to cook anything else so we had leftovers so I didn’t spend as much time in the kitchen as I had planned. They raved about my cornbread dressing and I would have thought they were just trying to make me feel good except that Dad ate about five helpings of it last night. We have leftover brisket, a whole smoked turkey breast we didn’t even cut, ham and roast beef so if I add a few fresh veggies, I might not have to cook again til New Year’s!

Vince’s second sock was finished this morning and as always, I promise myself I’ll do better with getting my gifts made earlier next year!

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  1. 1

    Randi says

    Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas, Judy! Glad you got to spend some good time with your folks. Here’s to a wonderful New Year!

  2. 2

    dee says

    OhJudy, that thing with your Mom and Vince is just a natural occurrence of engineer meets sensitivity. My husband is the nicest man with wonderful generosity and care for thers…but….he has no sensitivity filter for company sometimes. I’ve seen it in many other engineers we know. They are plain spoken and breathtakingly honest-to a fault! It’s the analytical mindI’ve had a number of things I’ve had to smooth over-I feel your pain.

  3. 4

    Becky says

    This sounds so like my family visits. When my Dad visits from Louisiana, I feel like a referee trying to keep my husband and Dad both happy. I always say its just too much male hormone in one place. Like Speck, my Rusty doesn’t like sharing his people. We are currently in Lafayette. I’ll eat some seafood for you. My oldest son is dog-sitting our dachshund back in Atlanta. We are hoping that Rusty, the dog, doesn’t run away like he did the last time Jason dog-sat. He was out on the streets for four days (the dog, not our son).

    Take care!

  4. 5

    Diane says

    I agree completely about wanting to live within a couple of hours, since I live 8 hours away now. We will be moving in a few months and we will then be about 17 hours. Too sad, but it is necessary. I have lived near my family only a couple of times and only for short periods.

  5. 6

    Vicky says

    Everything sounds like it went wonderfully, Vince and Mom aside! That just means they need to spend more time together!!

    I really hope you get to meet Daisy one day soon. I think she’s the total opposite of Speck! Wait, since opposites attract .. hmmm……. Relax and enjoy your quiet time!

  6. 8

    Marianne says

    I totally agree with Dee. Let’s just say these analytical types don’t exactly excel at interpersonnal skills.
    All in all, sounds like it was a fun visit. Undecorated already?, my, my!!

  7. 9

    EileenKNY says

    Sounds like you had a great family visit. Don’t sweat the oil and water thing. Deep down, they probably keep it going because it’s an odd sort of fun.

  8. 10

    Peggy says

    I fully understand the problem of being so far away from your parents. That is why I live in KY. When they lived in IN and I was in OH they were four hours away. When they moved to KY the drive became 8 hours. If I wanted to fly the time would be even longer. Since my brother lives in CA my parents and I mutually agreed that I should move to KY. At the time I was not married and we mutually needed each other.

    I enjoy reading your blog and check it often.

  9. 11

    jillquilts says

    I am glad that you had a nice visit with your folks! My parents are coming north to see us in about 3 weeks. I will be happy to see them, but they won’t like the cold that we have in Cincinnati!

  10. 12

    Erin says

    I am glad you had a nice Christmas! I am also glad Speck is keeping you company! Cry happy tears Judy! You have nice memories for the holiday and more memories to come right! My hubby is not an engineer, but a scorpio, born in November, and is very analytical, non sensitive in many ways, so I fully understand!! That is why Woody, my cat, is on my blog a lot!

  11. 13

    Mrs. Goodneedle says

    You are so organized, I’, very impressed with your meal planning. I’m relieved every time I learn that all family get togethers are far removed from the Norman Rockwell ideal. I used to think it was just mine… I know Speck’s happy to return to his normal routine. Enjoy the solitude.

  12. 14

    meggie says

    It can be a bit fraught when people dont know each other well. Always hard to meld families.

    I hope you have a Happy New Year, & wish you Joy & Love for 2008.