The dissertation was only the beginning.

People & Places
T: Amazing Husband
ST: Three-year-old Wonder
Prof. G: Advisor I
Prof. C: Advisor II
Julie: Stylish Sister
Rob: Awesome Brother
Belle: Our Cat
Bill: Grumbling BIL
Rita: Uncomplicated SIL
SMU: Smallish Midwestern University
Doctoral University: where I got my Ph.D.
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Sunday, November 26, 2006
Blissfully Long Weekend
Tomorrow another work week begins and I am definitely not in the right frame of mind for it. I've been reluctantly writing lectures all afternoon -- I cannot even bring myself to finish the last one for my Senior Seminar because it's just taking too much out of me. I've had to keep reminding myself all day that there are really only two more "real" weeks left in the semester; my final exams are scheduled for December 13 and 15. Then I'll have another blissful long break but still... after this short teaser break I'm completely unmotivated to work even two short weeks.

Our Thanksgiving break was lovely, positively lovely. Corinne, Ben, M (3 days older than ST) and Baby Eva (9 months) arrived late on Thanksgiving Day after getting lost in Midwestern State. (They never travel -- really, never -- and so any car trip longer than 1.5 hours throws them for a loop.) I had spent the morning of Thanksgiving preparing two turkeys (which had been in brine overnight), putting potatoes through my ricer, baking bread, and preparing my dressing and cranberry sauce. I was frantic, but then when they arrived everything seemed to calm down. They are such good friends of ours that just having them in the house made me feel instantaneously relaxed and happy. Corinne fed Baby Eva and then jumped into the kitchen to help me, T and Ben walked around our property, and ST and M giggled and laughed and ran around as only preschoolers can do. Baby Eva scooted around my hardwood floors, trying to catch Belle, our cat.

The meal turned out wonderfully, and for the first time in my life I made gravy that was actually edible and the correct consistency. (I only make gravy on Thanksgiving because it seems like the thing to do, and every year I buy a pre-made jar of gooey, gross gravy to have on hand just in case mine doesn't turn out. This is the first year I haven't had to use it!) After the meal we all sat around the table and talked each other's ears off before I served apple pie, pumpkin pie, and homemade raspberry sorbet (new recipe -- to die for).

One of the best parts of the weekend was watching ST and M. They have literally grown up together. Corinne and I shared our pregnancies when we lived right next door to each other, I was one of the first ones to hold M after she was born, and ST was born three days later (on M's due date). After the kids were born Corinne and I spent a lot of time together and we continued to do so as long as T and I lived in the neighborhood. ST and M are best friends. Watching them chatter away together, hug each other, run around like nuts, and even argue with each other was so wonderful. Although they hadn't seen each other since July 28, it was like no time had passed at all for them.

Corinne, Ben and the girls stayed until Saturday morning. By that time we had already crammed in a lot of memory-making events, including paddle boat rides on the pond, a bonfire by the pond and a visit to Santa for ST and M (where M was absolutely astounded that Santa could possibly know that she wanted a Barbie and a dollhouse... just like every other girl he talked to! ST asked for "a box of rescue vehicles from Dad's Special Store." Unfortunately, we have no idea what "Dad's Special Store" is. We've been told in no uncertain terms by ST that it is NOT Toys R Us. Hmmm). We also took in New Town's fantastic holiday light display near the lake, where we all attempted to sing "The Twelve Days of Christmas" without waking Baby Eva who was sleeping in her carseat. We were not ready for them to leave on Saturday morning, that's for sure. There was still so much left to do, so much more to talk about.

But we will see them again, and soon. This visit merely confirmed something we all already knew: we will be friends for life, no matter the distance that separates us. It's rare to find friends who are as comfortable in your home as they are in their own (Ben took out the garbage, snored in front of the football game on the floor of our living room; Corinne ran the dishwasher, poked her head in the bathroom while I was in the shower to ask me a question, etc.), and people who make you feel even more comfortable in your own home. So comfortable and happy that you don't want your time with them to end, and you definitely don't want to return to the real world the next day.
Posted with care by Prof. Me @ 11/26/2006 10:05:00 PM  
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