Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Busy Weekend

Wow, we had an incredibly busy weekend this past weekend. My parents came in from Ohio on Friday afternoon for a visit. We had dinner with them on Friday night and the kids ran around and played with them a lot. They call them Grandma and Papa and think they are tons of fun! My mom has always been good with kids, but my dad really came into his own after having grandkids. It is such fun to watch him tickle Zoe or play "bridge" with Ian and Emma. Probably my kids favorite thing is to play "monster" or "Eat me" where they tell my parents they are some form of food, and then my parents chase after them saying they are going to eat them. Ian, Emma and Zoe can never get enough of this.

On Saturday Brendan and I left the kids with my parents so we could go out to dinner and then to his sister and brother-in-law's new condo downtown. They just moved in at the end of September and were having a house warming/ first game of the World Series party. Patrick, the brother-in-law, is a huge White Sox fan, and he's converted his wife into a big fan, too. They have a great place. It's a one bedroom one bath condo with a fireplace and a great patio/ deck. Their kitchen is impressive with stainless steal appliances and what looks like marble countertops. The whole place has hardwood floors, except the bedroom, and they have exposed ceiling and ductwork. The roof of the building is very cool. It has four industrial type grills for anyone's use, some stainless steel prep tables, and several benches and tables and chairs for entertaining or dinner al fresco. The bathroom is a really good size, bigger than our full bath in our house. The only part I wasn't impressed with was the bedroom. It had a decent closet, but it was really tiny and had no door. I could live with the size, but the no door part would bug me, I think. It's really a great place.

The party they had was a lot of fun. Patrick and Elizabeth served two kinds of Pumpkin Ale, and I got mine in a glass rimmed with cinnamon sugar. Quite tasty. They have a lot of great friends and family who came out. I have been going to functions with Elizabeth's friends for quite a while now, and they are always so friendly. I'm very comfortable with them, which always makes me look forward to any party Elizabeth and Patrick throw. I like catching up with them and seeing what they are doing. One of her friends even helped get Brendan an interview when he was out of work. They are good people. What I am most amazed about is the different things each of them is doing with their lives. Elizabeth has been friends with a lot of these girls since junior high (maybe earlier) and they are doing incredible things with their lives. Elizabeth is a lawyer. Debbie is a teacher of junior high students, Katie has her masters degree and is an event planner for the city of Naperville, another friend just recently married is now pregnant and due with her first child. It is amazing the variety in their careers, but they are still the best friends. They're very fortunate to have found each other.

After an amazing Sox victory, we headed home late and got into bed. We got up for 9:00 AM mass the next day and after headed out to Sonny Acres for some Fall fun with the kids and my parents. Brendan loves taking the kids to Sonny Acres because his parents took him when he was a kid. There are all kinds of rides like a giant slide, spinning strawberries, kiddie train and truck rides, and pony rides. They have a haunted barn, which Ian thought he wanted to do, but changed his mind at the last minute. Emma loved the giant slide and would have been content to just ride that over and over. It was quite a "mom" moment for me when I asked Emma if she could go by herself, and she said "yes" and then did! She was this little three year old climbing these huge stairs all the way to the top, and then sliding down as fast as possible. She always had a huge smile across her face as she came down. Ian enjoyed the "shooting range" probably the most, while Zoe loved being in the kiddie trucks and driving around and around. After eating a lunch of hamburgers, bratwursts, hot dogs, nachos, Doritos and hot apple cider for the adults, we picked out a pumpkin and went home.

For dinner I tried a new recipe for Stuffed Pork Tenderloin and we celebrated my mom and dad's birthdays. We got my dad a tree limb lopper and my mom these special slippers that she wanted. They both seemed happy with their presents and Ian and Emma were proud of the drawings they made in their cards. They drew a picture of Papa in my dad's card and a picture of Grandma in my mom's card. After dinner we sang happy birthday and had some pumpkin spice cake that I made that afternoon. My parents aren't big cake eaters, but they loved it. We had ice cream with it, which of course the kids loved.

After dinner we settled in to watch the Sox beat the Astros in an awesome game.

My parents left yesterday morning and we are now back into our everyday routine. It was a fun weekend.

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