August 9, 2021

Rarely at a loss for words . . . even now, as it happens

This blog rarely finds me at a loss for words . . . but here I am. So much going on, I don't quite know where to begin. I had a post ready to go for today. I scheduled something knowing life was going to kick up a notch. That post didn't cover how ramped up everything is at the moment, so I decided to start fresh. Part of the reason for being so busy is a long story that I'm drafting in bits and pieces. It will pop up here eventually.

Fun fact about me:  I don't like to start a story and leave it unfinished. If I'm at a social gathering and I go off on a tangent (who me?) or get interrupted (the nerve), I struggle if I can't get back to my original thread. When it dawns on me later, I think OH SHOOT, I NEVER FINISHED TELLING THE REST OF (insert really important tale here). So the story I'm working on will be shared once I have all of it ready to go. Get excited.

Last week I finished my grad video for Tank, not without the usual hiccups and nightmarish moments. The movie is so long. What can I say, Tank is hard to recap in under 30 minutes. I realized one night when I was almost done that every time I cut and paste a video clip and dragged it to another part of the movie, that I inadvertently deleted whatever clips were near the spot where I pasted the clip.  I refused to panic, but went back thru my clips and re-entered them. *Initially I dragged the clips, but cutting and pasting was so much faster - um, editing fail. 

While sleep is one of my favorite things, it was sadly not a priority last week.

First there were the late nights spent 'fixing' the movie, once till 1 am and my internal clock wakes me at 6 am. Of course my movie drama happened while Mini was away at Young Life camp so she couldn't help me. Sigh. But, it all turned out. I decided to let myself off the hook. Left the movie in it's intended natural state of a whopping 45 minutes. The end result might be crazy long, but it included iconic moments that I couldn't bare to leave on the cutting room floor. 

This bit made it into the video. Mini and I 
were dying laughing when we stumbled upon it.



So . . . that late night was spent trolling Amazon till we had ordered an extra pair of sneakers. Shower shoes. Fake rubbery Birkenstocks. Ed bought a pair at CVS for a few bucks his first weekend away at college and he loves them. He sold Tank on the idea. Those cheap shoes come in unisex sizes. Translation:  they only go up to a  men's size 12 or 13, but all 13s were sold out. You know that Tank wears a size 15, right? 

All this while I cleaned the house for the Aug 7th grad party. By clean, I mean seriously organize loads of STUFF and REALLY clean the areas that are apparently easy to ignore on the regular. I had so many lists to remind me what needed to be done - not the least of which was the groceries. I bought mountains of food:  5 lbs of Italian Beef to throw in crockpots and then everything needed to whip up 10 lbs of baked mostaccioli, a full crock pot of sweet and sour green beans, and I doubled the always popular 7 layer taco dip. I let myself off the hook and ordered three of the amazing Portillos chopped salads, and a cake from Costco. I thawed dozens of my chocolate chip cookies and hired my niece to make a surprise 'special' cake featuring Tank's college mascot. 

The party was Saturday. All went well. Lots of people we invited couldn't come, which was a true bummer. Weather was a little sticky, as in hotter than hell, but no rain. We were worried people would flock inside and we'd need to enlist the service of the basement where we currently have an unidentified AWFUL smell that we cannot tame. The plumber came by and assured us it is not a sewage issue. Interesting because the stench says otherwise. Remember the dropped milk gallon on the stairs? Could that be coming back to haunt us? That was 6 months ago and we've had no issues since our dedicated clean up. Hmm. 

When not pondering gag-a-maggot smells and just how much food is necessary to feed a smallish crowd, I asked Coach if he'd consider fixing the Great White up since we are having a heck of a time finding a replacement. 

He's not interested in fixing 'er up, which I get, but we drive Tank to college on Friday the 13th and we'd like to drive a newer version of the Great White. We have no idea when a gently used, former airport shuttle will become available. Lad came home from work just before the party and told me that they found a possible car for us, but it said DAVE'S PLUMBING on the side. Desperate times, I'm not opposed. 

Sunday, the day after the party, we packed up all the vacation food I'd organized while preparing for the party (some of which I stored in my folks' fridge so I could make room for 8 small trays of pasta), the leftover trays of pasta, and a bunch of other crap and woke up the teenage crew and drove to Michigan for a three day vacation at a rented house near Lake Michigan.  

We return Wednesday and then spend Thursday packing before we make the college drop off with Tank on Friday. And there you have it - not exactly a loss for words, but busier than all get out. Have I mentioned that I'm exhausted? 


Nicole MacPherson said...

WOW. That I am exhausted just reading this. I hope you get a little downtime after this week! How hectic. And Tank's heading off to college!!! That snuck up quickly!

Ally Bean said...

Good gravy, you've been doing the things. LOTS of things. I can understand wanting to finish what you start, especially when it comes to writing and/or telling a story. Telling your truth all the way through is important. Laughing about a boy child only owning one pair of shoes. One! Oh my!!

Kari said...

Woof, I'm exhausted reading this.

Maybe the smell is Tank's feet since he only owns one pair of shoes? I AM KIDDING.

All that food sounds really good. I'm glad your party went well and that you were able to sneak in a family vacation too. :)

Kara said...

You have a very busy life!

Those shoe organizers are great! I have one in the kids bathroom, and it holds extra shampoo, razors and all of the other stuff they need. I've also seem them used in pantries to hold snacks. Basically "shoe organizer" is a misnomer, as they can be used in so many other ways.

Anonymous said...

But what happened with the in-laws????

Were they among the no-shows?
Did they come and behave themselves?

A nosy person wants to know!

Bibliomama said...

That video is GOLD. And yes, that's... a lot of stuff. I bet that three-day vacation was super relaxing, right? Or maybe not?

Busy Bee Suz said...

I LOVE the video.
Seriously, we have been so busy around here with stuff and at least once a day I say to myself: Well I know all that Ernie is going through and she still has time to blog---what is wrong with me?!
You are Mother Of The year with the food, the party, the movie AND planned a vacation getaway. YOU deserve to rest. XO

Ernie said...

Nicole - Yes, hectic. And there are actually more layers to just HOW hectic life has been - more on that coming soon. Yes, all this and then a drive to a college drop off in a few days.

Ernie said...

Ally - It has been a crazy nutty summer in general, but the last few weeks . . . GOODNESS. To think, I usually look forward to summer because I don't babysit. That thought process backfired. Technically Tank has two pairs of shoes AND a pair of athletic slides that I like to refer to as skis, because they are huge and always in my way. He owns dress shoes, but he never wears them. It really comes down to the fact that he has SUCH big feet and he's hard to shop for. These things though - like, why not mention this before a week prior to leaving for school?

Ernie said...

Kari- I'm exhausted. I felt like I had to interrupt my other scheduled posts to update people on my hectic life, or I'd feel more overwhelmed trying to catch people up later.

The party was fun. Wish more people could've come. So much effort. It is nice while on vacation to think that so many nooks and cranies of the house are clean. The food was yummy. And leftovers are saving my sanity right now at the rented lake house.

Ernie said...

Kara- I am totally on the same page with the shoe organizer thought process. Multi purpose-organizer for sure. I knew he had very few shoes and I told him that he could use the organizer for other things at college.

When Ed was 3, he drove me crazy if he couldn't find his favorite guys (action figures) he would lose it. I hung a shoe organizer in the basement and told him to keep his favorites in there. Problem solved.

Ernie said...

Anonymous - Oh, the in-laws . . . this post was already long enough so I didn't go into it. They came. Coach texted all his family the morning of the party to let them know that they'd have to wear masks when they came in the house.

His folks were the first ones there. They came in the house without masks. They went back on the deck but came in again without masks. My dad wasn't there yet, and Coach was not in the room. I said: YOU NEED TO HAVE A MASK ON WHEN YOU'RE INSIDE.

My file said: WHAT? RIGHT NOW?

I said: YEP.

They stayed outside most of the time and wore a mask when they came inside. My MIL went out of her way to go into the dining room to chat with my folks. My folks were sitting there . . . to stay AWAY from the unvax people. Read the room much? Ugh. I was glad when they left fairly early. Probably since it was SO humid and they had to sit outside.

There really weren't lots of no shows, just many people we invited RSVP'd that they couldn't come. Here I thought having it when most grad parties were over would work out well. Sigh.

Ernie said...

Ali- That video clip is exactly what I ran into over and over - I could not cut that crap down. I came across so much stuff I didn't even remember that I had. Someone gave the search for cute videos WAT TOO MUCH TIME. While Mini and I edited the movie, she refused to let me fast forward thru the Sesame costume part because it gave her too much joy.

We are on the 3 day vacation right now. I must blog about how long it takes ALL OF US to agree on a movie to watch each night here. It is fairly relaxing but also work . . . packing the snack bags for the beach. And feeding the family without eating out to keep the cost of vacation down. Washing beach towels. Still nice to be away, but not complete stress free.

Ernie said...

Suz- This video clip AND SO MANY OTHERS . . . gems. I think I watched almost every clip in my digital files. I think it was soothing or a distraction. Not to mention . . . fun. But, there I was uncovering all kinds of hilarity that needed to be put into the movie. The final version received rave reviews from the party goers. I thought I'd put it on YouTube so long distance friends could watch. Silly me. One needs about a zillion followers for that.

I would LIKE to rest. Why must I rise early EVERY day? Coach just realized he failed to take Friday off. He's supposed to drive to Omaha with me to drop off Tank. I don't think I can stay awake to do the return trip myself. The plot thickens.

Pat Birnie said...

That video clip is so sweet! And wow could you be any busier? I’m so happy your family got away for a few days. I do hope it was relaxing in some way - in spite of laundry, cooking and all those tasks that follow mom everywhere.

Ernie said...

Pat- 'all those tasks that follow mom everywhere' . . . very true words. It was hard to gather the whole gang but we are all in MI together since Sunday night. 2 boys will leave this afternoon. They hate missing opportunity to make $$ . . unless of course it's to hang at a friend's lake house. Then different story.

Beth Cotell said...

Just now catching up on all the posts I'm behind on. Getting Peter ready for school has me behind on the rest of my life. But now I'm feeling lazy because all I was doing was getting him ready and you were doing that for Tank, plus editing a major video, cooking more food in a weekend than I cook in two weeks, cleaning your house, and preparing for a vacation! Props to you my friend. You seem to excel in chaos whereas I just shut down. I hope everything went off as planned and that you maintained your sanity!

Ernie said...

Beth- It was a crazy busy stretch to say the very least, but the party worked out. Weather cooperated. The food was delish, and I didn't mind taking leftovers on vacation. I don't care what my offspring tell people, leftovers won't kill you. My sanity might have suffered a tad.