O.K., I hate to be a whiner but I need to unload a few things that I really DID NOT like about my visit home to my parent’s in Illinois. The following is my list for this week and a few complaints I know you would all want me to share:
(and by ‘you’ I’m referring to the two of you who read my blog besides my mom)
1. My Mom’s cooking and my Dad’s BBQing.
Honestly I know that the piles, containers, pans and tins of cookies, cakes, pies and treats aren’t being made for me anymore, they’re being made for the grandkids but I’m still subjected to the amazing food my parent’s have or prepare for us when we visit. No matter how slim and trim I am before our visit I know going in that I’m not leaving my folks without packing on a new 20 pounds (usually in the first 24 hours of the visit). Gooey-Butter Cake. Blackberry pie. Peanut butter rice krispie treats. Melo-Cream donuts. BBQ ribs. Steak. Buffalo Wing Horshoes. It’s just not fair.
And now I’ve drooled on my keyboard.
But you know, I’m going to take it and pretend to like it all just for their sake. It’s a sacrifice but one I’m willing to endure. That’s just the kind of son I am.
2. Seeing My Brother & His Wife
You know, with family like my brother and his wife I’ll never get a guest spot on Jerry Springer or even Dr. Phil. Why can’t I have a severely dysfunctional brother who married conjoined twins who is getting a divorce from one of them because they’re in love with me? Instead I get two of the funniest, most generous and caring people that I know.
When I first got home my brother phoned from Arizona where he lives to say, “hey” before they got on a plane and flew all the way across country just to see us (well, again, the niece and nephews). He asked me questions about my parent’s health and problems they’d been dealing with that I had been completely oblivious to. I’m the firstborn who is supposed to be on top of all that sort of stuff but he’s the feeler, the compassionate and big hearted second born who, with his beautifully pregnant wife, loves us all very well. Spending time with them playing wiffle ball in the backyard and playing Texas Hold ‘em together and laughing our heads off and snorting pop out our noses when mom threatened to beat us all in a very unique way only reminded me that he and Jenn will never get me a spot on Springer.
Maybe if I can get them to move into a trailer park…
3. Catching Up With An Old Friend
The problem for me was not the visit with my old friend so much as not being able to ask some of the questions I really wanted to ask her, most of which I thought of about 5 minutes after we left her house and others I realized in the moment might not be about stories ‘familiar’ to her mom & dad and I was too thick headed to come up with ‘code speak’ fast enough to talk about it.
Sure, it was amazing to see her folks again and swap stories and to have my kidlings hanging out with hers and hear her laugh (which hasn’t changed a bit and always reminds me of the laugh of someone plotting mischief or a world takeover). But can I get a few things clear? (and this applies to any of my old friends)
First, If we get together, please have put on, proportionally, as much weight and grey/white hair as I have. It’s just good manners. Under no circumstances should you look younger than me.
Second, please act like a jerk, be rude or completely un-interested in me, the elusive Donna or the kidlings so that I don’t have to leave our time together wondering why the heck I have fallen out of touch with you. Maybe call me bi-bi-Bri again and question my sexual orientation like the old days in Spanish Class. It’s MUCH easier for me if I haven’t seen you in 15 years because of YOU rather than me.
Third, you’ve GOT to make plans with your husband to come visit us so we can get #1 & #2 correct this time.
That’s all I didn’t like about my visit home and that’s my whine for today, vintage stuff!