A couple times a year Mike shows his true nerd-colors and travels for a few days for some academic conference or another and has way too much fun all by himself. One of these conferences (the nerdiest of all) takes place in Kalamazoo, MI and we have accompanied him before and also had way too much fun considering that we were in, um, Kalamazoo. Kalamazoo is only 1.5 hours from here, so a couple of years ago I decided that bringing the girls along and playing in the hotel while he discussed all of his favorite Medieval topics was better than sitting at home counting down the hours until his return. And it was, much much better.
However this year, with the addition of another child and more legit home schooling underway, I was not even close to wanting to bring the older children anywhere with me and Mike. When Mike reminded me a few months ago that his conference would be falling in the middle of May, I made a prompt SOS call to my saintly mother and begged her and my dad to move their already scheduled May visit back a week so they could watch the girls while I ran (almost literally) away with Joseph to keep Mike company on his academic venture, and she said "yes"- hence the "saintly" thing.
Here's how the conversation went down between me and Mike- or something close to this- after I got the yes from my mom:
Ana: My mom said she would watch the kids so Joe and I could come with you to Kalamazoo.
Mike: Ok, but I have a lot of sessions to go to
Ana: Ok, I don't care we're coming
Mike: That's great, I have a paper to give so I will be working a lot on that
Ana: That's ok, we are coming.
Mike: It is possible that I won't get to see you guys much at all
Ana: Don't care, WE ARE COMING
I think he could sense from the crazy in my eyes and my voice that I just really needed a little break from the crazy females I spend my days with and he went ahead and made arrangements for me and Joe to crash his historical party, and crash it we did.
My mom came Wednesday evening and Mike and I hit the road first thing Thursday morning. This was the day with all the sessions that Mike was attending, so I took the opportunity to con the hotel workers into letting me and Joe check in early and take a much needed looooooong nap- the first I have taken in a really long time. And then we went to find Mrs. Jenna Hines of Call Her Happy and force her and her insanely adorable kids to hang out with us.
It was a blast and even included my first- and hopefully my last- experience of witnessing fellow moms peeing in the grass at the park with no bathrooms- MOMS, not kids.
I had joked with Mike earlier in the day that Joseph and I were going to go get margaritas while he was at the conference dinner and then I couldn't stop thinking about margaritas. So naturally after I departed from Jenna and passed a little authentic Mexican restaurant with signs about their cheap margs, the deal was sealed. Dining alone was never so fun.
I also got the best, the very BEST, quesadilla of my life and had to fight the urge to get a second one really hard. Joseph took a little siesta in the van while we waited to pick Mike up, because he can only handle so much fun.
On the second day Mike impressed me thoroughly by finishing his paper early and so we had the rest of the day to dine out, get the best donuts of my entire life, go thrift store shopping, watch TWO movies, dine out again and sleep as much as Joseph would let us. It was spectacular.
In short (uh huh, right): I do not need a tropical getaway, just give me one kid to take care of and a hotel bed to sleep on and I will be the happiest little camper you ever saw.
Back to Monday reality!