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Browsing Tag: family trip

Mom’s Decline: Where We Are

I was on the phone with my mom the other day, laughing about my parenting skills while David was away for work. “I’m really good, Mom,” I told her, “really patient and calm, right up until about six o’clock.” She laughed, because she remembers. “But after six?” I continued. “Nope, I’m done. That’s when the shutters get closed on my brain and the patience goes out the window.” My mom was listening to me. Sometimes she pays only half a bit of attention to me, especially when the TV is on in front of her (sixteen months into brain cancer, and she can still tell me everything going on in the news), or her caregiver is in the room, or when she’s simply tired or extra-weak that day. But that afternoon, she was listening, and talking, and it almost felt like old times. “Well,” Mom said. “It takes a lot of patience to have patience!” When I started to write this update last week, my post was a bit different than it is today. I was going…

For Mom and for Quinlan, a Field Trip

SO. Let’s catch up, shall we? Quinlan, our second kiddo, is in 4th grade, which is The Project Year in her school, aka The Year That Just Might Do In The Parents Yet. One of the fall projects she was assigned involved visiting a place in Pennsylvania as a tourist, and her teacher sent out a list of options that ranged widely in distance and cost. But you know how life goes: by the time I got to the online sign-up sheet (The world of online sign-up sheets is cutthroat, man. Other parents make me nervous), all the cheap/local options were taken, so I started eyeballing two other places that have been on our family’s “wanna see” lists for a while now: Fallingwater and Longwood Gardens. When I broached the ideas to Quinn, who really just wanted to go to Hersheypark and call it a day (ALL READY TAKEN, QUINN), she asked which choice would be one at which her Grammy could join us. Fact: Fallingwater is stairs upon stairs in a wooded forestland. Problem: my mom is in a wheelchair. Conclusion: Longwood Gardens, here we come. We chose Columbus Day…

Onward to Victory Sounds Kind of Easy After All

We took our kids to South Bend, Indiana this weekend to see Notre Dame (go Irish!) play Navy.  It’s always a good game to take kids–respect! honor! tradition! a flyover!–but it’s also an incredibly intense weekend: we drive out early on Friday from our home here in Pennsylvania, pack in some activities that night, spend most of the day Saturday on the go, and then try to pack in a bit more before we drive home Sunday. We’ve never done it with all three children before. We would be traveling with my mom, and meeting up with my brother and sister-in-law, who were driving in from Wisconsin. People thought we were nuts. I’m not even going to wager a guess as to what my bro and his wife were bracing themselves for. Thank God for sibling love. 10.13.15. Notre Dame. flyover. MOV And even though we knew we were supposed to be nuts, we had absolutely no expectations going into this trip: on one hand, the kids have become really good travelers (well, SK and Quinn have always been, and Cian suddenly has done…