Tuesday, September 05, 2006

A Rock and a Hard Place

Saturday night I asked Pink, "Would all of this had been better if I told you mid week that I wouldn't be surprised if my parental units wanted to do something on Labor Day?"

"Did you know then something was up?"

"Nope, I just know my parents..."


I've fallen far from my family tree, but not far enough to enherit some of their traits. One of them I didn't enherit, but am very aware of, is planning to get together with extended family, on holidays, at short notice. Some could be "light" holidays like Memorial Day, the Independence Day, and Labor Day, others can be more "heavy" like Turkey Day and Winter holidays.

So, on Wednesday, when nothing was being mentioned, I knew something was going to be up. I had an innate feeling.

Saturday Night, after we did a neighbor toddler birthday party (and Pink convinced me to go to the craft store for presents...Stealth Fighter and the F-16 Blue Angel jet snap models...toys are too easy to get), Pink and I are cuddling up to Memior of a Geisha, I head into the fridge during a lull moment, grab a Diet Coke, and check for messages on the phone. This is about 9pm or so. I listen to the message, then ask Pink to pause the movie.

"One message from Dad, wants to know if we can get together with them Sunday or Monday, my bro/SiL/Baby, my Aunt, and Great Grandma. Options he suggested were to go to Grandma's house so she doesn't have to get around, but didn't mention anywhere else. He also wants to cook chili."

*enter in debate about planning stuff at the last minute* Eventually, Pink and I settled on inviting everyone over OR going over to Grandma's. Pink loves to cook for people, and admittedly so it's not chili weather, so she was going to grill some hamburgers and brauts.

Not only that, my daycare provider would have my head if I took Little Blue to daycare with chili in his system.

So, I call Dad back, fill up his message letting him know why I was getting back so late, we'd be at the Royals game on Sunday, but would love to have everyone over on Monday for a get together.

So, at this point...Pink and I unspokenly agree that since it's at our place, we'd cook.

About an hour later, Dad calls back. *pauses movie* Dad doesn't know any more information other than my bro has Monday off and we're free Monday, and we're going to be at Grandma's house. He'll call around to the family and see what's up. He said he'd call me back after the baseball game, but I said I'd call him when we got home.

Then, I can hear my Mom talking in the background, and when Dad went quiet to listen...I knew plans were changing.

Sure enough, the first words out of his mouth was, "looks like plans are changing."

No, shit!

Dad asks if our house is free. Knowing we'd have to clean up a little, and Pink would be more comfortable in our own home and all of Little Blue's entertainment toys are here, I said an enthusiastic Yes! He'll call me back after the game (no, Dad, I'll call you!), and Pink and I are again on the assumption train that we're cooking and chili is out of the menu.

Sunday rolls around and we have a great time at the game. About 10 minutes after we get home, I call Dad.

"Got room for everyone?"

*I cheer inside* "Yup, we'll be ready!"

"All right, Bro/SiL are up in St. Joe during the day, so we'll do dinner. I'll be over early to cook the chili."

*cheer dies* But, knowing Pink would be happy about the festivities at our place, I reluctantly agree. I also get more information about my Aunt not being there.

I hang up the phone and could have sworn I told Pink that Dad would be over to cook the chili in the early afternoon (Dad didn't give a time, so I assume Noon if he does his chili like he always has done). But, I occasionally think/stew about stuff so much that I felt like I've said it, where in truth, I didn't, but I assume I did.

Needless to say, I'd be safe to say that about the 20 or so times it happens throughout the year, 2 or so fall on important details like this one, and I think for those .021256897452 seconds, she literally hates me.

Course, I'd hate me too if I expected her to have some psychic ability to read my mind.

*Pink and Blue watch the 40 Year Old Virgin*

Monday morning, Little Blue is right on the usual schedule of waking us up a hair after 7am. We do our business, go snuggle Pink, then all head down for breakfast. My stomache wasn't agreeing with me, so I had a bagel, then visited the ceramic god for a little meditation.

By 8am, food was in out tummies, and I had an internal schedule that the place needed to be clean by 10am so we could go get me some clothes at Casual Male XL at the Great Mall and still be back in time to meet Dad for the chili cooking. Little Blue and Pink set up cleaning up the floor, I work on the kitchen, getting the dining room table cleaned off, changing the kitty litter out, trash out...then I remember.

Baby Kate.

I mention to Pink that the changing table needed to be cleaned off in case SiL needed to change the baby while they were here. Pink, like the genius she is, has Little Blue go with her and they start cleaning up Little Blue's room while Pink finds a place for all the winter clothes hand-me-downs that were piling up.

I get done vaccuming and they get done cleaning at about 9:30, which is when Dale mentions she needs to go to the store to buy burgers for the grill. Then I mention Dad being over for chili prep.

"Wait...he's coming to our house, to cook his food he's preparing for everyone...at our house."

I shrug my shoulders. Yup.

*enter in an actually polite debate about the whole situation and what we're going to do*

I dash into the shower, Pink and LB get ready, and we're out the door at 10:30am. 30 minutes later than my internal clock, but we're doing good.

We do my shopping in 15 minutes or so. Woot.

Little Blue figures out what the little sensor means when you walk into a store at the mall. Little Blue is working well on his way of breaking the sensor. :) I give him a hard time about it because depending on how the store ran their figures, they might average how many people walked in vs. amount sold per day...and with 20 Little Blues walking in and out...I didn't want to futz their numbers.

Sickening I think about that stuff, isn't it? My mind does NOT shut up. Don't feel sorry for me...feel sorry for Pink...she has to put up with me. :P

So we're off to the new bodacious HyVee at 119th and Ridgeview. I made sure to pick up some Boulavard Wheat and Pink picks up some wine coolers.

At this pace, we're going to need them.

We get back home a little before Noon (did I tell you I rarely tell Pink my internal timetable?), so we let Little Blue eat his lunch and put him down for his nap.

At 12:30pm, Dad calls.

He's not making the chili at his house now...he's making it Grandmas. He'll be here about 5:30.

*more of my 74% evil thoughts race through my head*

So...Pink and I play video games for three hours while Little Blue takes his nap. After his nap, he wakes up, comes down into the basement with us, and plays for a while while I finish up playing some bowling on pogo.com (best score is a 203 btw).

Pink heads up to start slicing up the fixins for the burgers, Little Blue and I play for a bit more, then we head up stairs.

"Your Dad said he'd be here at 5:30 with Grandma and your Mom," Pink reminds me, "It's about 4:45 now, should we start the fire for the burgers?"

"If Dad said 5:30, then he means 5:30 or later. We'll start it at about 5:10 or so."

Well all be damned if he isn't 15 minutes early.

And the 5th sentence my brother mentions, "So, you still interested in World of Warcraft?" He's getting better, he's usually asking that right after, "Hello!"

So, the fire gets going and we sit down to eat at 6:15ish by the time we got everyone sat down with drinks in hand.

Kudos for Bro watching the baby and letting SiL eat first.

We gab, talk, laugh, enjoy Little Blue's antics, and watched pictures of Baby Kate and Little Blue scroll by via the DVD player.

In the end Pink and I were happy, double glad we grilled the burgers, and glad everyone left right after Little Blue headed to bed.

So, I made Pink happy by getting the festivities at our place.
I also made Pink sad by being so flexible about the whole thing and the chili thing at the last minute.

I made Dad happy that he could cook the chili.
I'm sure Dad was a little down that Pink made burgers too.

I choose a game I can't win, but a game I won't loose, either. Thankfully, Pink doesn't hold it against me.

Thus is the life of the extended pamphlet household...

1 comment:

scott said...

Well done, doctor. You're a pro at adapting on your feet. :)