On Saturday afternoon after a few long days of meetings, networking, entertaining prospective clients, eating too much food and gaining back those precious pounds I have been trying to lose, Nathan and I were able to get away for a few hours with friends Eric and Nicole to Temecula Valley. Eric is one of Nathan’s longtime friends from college. We had not seen them since our wedding and it was an incredibly fun afternoon we shared. Plus on Saturday night Nathan and I were able to have a real date at Roy’s before our early departure home yesterday. After two babies in eighteen months, moving three times, building a house, a major career change and the numerous other changes I cannot think of right now that we have experienced over the past three years, a real date is precious, valued time together.
I snapped some pictures on my phone both of Nathan above overlooking the Callaway vineyard as well as the traffic we drove in from where my conference and meetings had taken place to Temecula.
There were six lanes of traffic like this in the early afternoon on Saturday. On our way home it was raining cats and dogs and again tough traffic.
While my 90 mile one way commute to the airport at times is a challenge on the prairie, it is a breeze compared to the grind of California traffic. My love and appreciation for raising our family in rural America grows when I experience the opposite life of it.
The winter is getting long on the prairie right now as my mom blogged about today. We have had three months of snow. Having an afternoon to enjoy the green landscape and ripe fruit trees of California gave me hope and reminded me that indeed the snow will melt on the prairie and my bulbs I planted last fall will peek through in the next couple months.
Plus I have spent parts of four of the last six weeks in California, mostly northern CA and this past week in southern CA. All have been business related and nothing touristy about the visits. Visiting wineries and just visiting with friends had me unwind and enjoy being a tourist.
But then we were ready for…
a return to life on the prairie again where Miss E was ready for her daddy to fix her broken piano book. Of course with the quick turn of a small screwdriver he did and she promptly began singing “The B-I-B-L-E” song from the book for us.
And Hunter had a new tough guy t-shirt Nathan bought him in Disneyland. I promised our tough guy son that I would not post the picture I took of him actually flexing his muscles. He was hugely disappointed at how small his muscles looked on the camera. Obviously a flawed camera.
Miss E and Hunter had lots of fun stories to tell us about their time with Mayme and Grandpa Fred staying at our house. E was thrilled with her Minnie Mouse backpack and new princess water bottle. When we got home, she crawled up next to me to sit and said “Well I was a dood dgirl (good girl)”. Translation: she was very deserving of her presents.
Of course Anika was her happy self and ready for evening story time last night. She let out her first ever whiny “I only want my mommy” cry this morning when Nathan was holding her before he left for work. I will be holding her a little extra over the next few days to catch up on baby hugs.
But the best absolute best part of our trip? Yes it was a productive work trip, a fun Saturday getaway in southern California wine country, wonderful for my husband and I to actually have one on one conversations together and great bonding time for our kids with their grand parents.
But the best part was that my sweet mother did every single piece of our laundry, washed, dried, put it away. Every sock is paired. Every towel is washed. All four baskets of clean clothes of mine that never get put away are hung in my closet or neatly folded in drawers. And she organized my closet. It is neat, tidy and organized. She even put a basket together of clothes I should get rid of at our local consignment store, my secret source of making cash to buy new clothes. I was so excited that Elizabeth got excited too and we jumped up and down together in celebration. Who knew clean laundry would have me jumping with glee?
I feel pure relief. I am a new woman.