Wednesday evening I spent an hour sitting at my in-law's dining room table working on a post to update you on our Florida week. I just had one more image to add before I hit 'publish' when Tom's laptop froze on me. As a last ditch effort, I refreshed the page.
Poof! My post vanished!
Of course, it was a brilliant post - one of my best ever! Ahem. But I decided playing cards, exploring thrift stores and walking on the beach were more important than trying to remember what I'd written, and I procrastinated re-writing it until now, after a twelve-hour drive home and lugging in all of our suitcases and before starting the laundry.
I'm sure you understand.
I do recall that Nobel-worthy post had something to do with eating lots of peanut butter and chocolate. In my mother-in-law's kitchen there were these cute little Christmas plates that magically filled with all kinds of cookies overnight. Tom and I did our best to eat them up every day but then, the next morning, it would be overflowing in sweet yummy goodies all over again!
It was so weird!
Christmas magic, I'm sure.
We did more than eat peanut butter and chocolate, though; we played lots of cards... mostly 3-13, a kind of rummy. Tom and his family also play cribbage, but they're so fast at it I'd rather just sit and watch in awe.
One of Tom's eight brothers, Joe, lives near his parents; he and his wife Erin used to live in Texas and we've always had a great time with them. On this trip we trekked through antique/junk shops and along the beach, searching for all different kinds of treasure. We also spent one evening catching up over margaritas and 3-13 (they stomped us!)
Martha Stewart has nothing on Mom and Erin when it comes to Christmas decor. I came home totally inspired to finish my tree and create a beautiful table setting. Both of their houses twinkle in Christmas spirit.
Friday, our last day there, Mom had planned to take us to the infamous McGuires Irish Pub right after Pop had a small test run. Unfortunately, we ended up eating in a hospital cafeteria instead of McGuires. (Barbecued ribs, since you asked. And they were pretty dang good!)
Pop didn't even get any lunch... unless you call the stuff that drips through an IV "lunch".
You see, over the last few years - more frequently in the past few months - Pop has been getting anemic. So anemic that he requires transfusions. On Friday the doctor felt his blood count was low enough that he needed another recharge.
I'm glad Tom and I were able to be there to help them out, at least for a day. And we still had fun with them, playing cards and listening to Pop flirt with the nurses (that old rascal!)
As I write this, he's still in the hospital. We're praying the doctors can figure out why he keeps getting anemic and what to do about it. Please join me! (Thank you!)
And now for my sweet! moments of the week...
Sunday: your parents-in-law's faces on a long overdue visit; playing 3-13 even if you lose every game; a tree covered in angel ornaments; chocolate and peanut butter bars
Monday: chocolate and peanut butter bars; chocolate and peanut butter bars; chocolate and peanut butter bars; laughing with your brother- and sister-in-law over margaritas and games of 3-13 (even if they always win)
Tuesday: chocolate and peanut butter bars; Tums; running with your sweetie so you can eat more chocolate and peanut butter bars; swingsets sturdy enough for adults; an evening penitential service in a beautiful church
Wednesday: exploring thrift/antique/junk shops with your sweetie, brother- and sister-in-law; Victorian houses draped in Christmas
Thursday: walking on a deserted Pensacola beach with loved ones, searching for shells; your heels sinking deep into squeaky snow white sand; wearing a swimsuit in December; purple beach flowers; finally winning a game of 3-13!
Friday: spending a day laughing and playing cards with your in-laws, even if most of it is spent in the hospital; old globes; watching old episodes of MASH, Taxi, Gomer Pyle, Petticoat Junction...
Saturday: starting off on time for your return trip home; a pre-dawn deserted interstate; sharing a footlong turkey sandwich with your sweetie; your tail-wagging, grinning puppies greeting you when you arrive back home after a week away; the sight of 2/3 of your kids after a long absence; your son helping you out when you're feeling frustrated and exhausted; three paychecks in the mail