Thursday, December 5, 2013

Thanksgiving travels

So…it’s been nearly a month since I list posted.  Oops.  Time flies when you are having fun.  Or when you are busy.  Or something like that.

I spent Thanksgiving in Michigan, visiting my parents.  As of the afternoon of Thanksgiving Eve, I wasn’t sure I would be able to make the trip.  My area of Ohio was hit by the snowstorm that traveled north that week.  We had nearly a foot of heavy, wet snow dumped on us over 36 hours.  Thankfully it had tapered off by the time I was finished work on Wednesday.  Late that night I packed up the car and the pups and I headed west to Michigan.  As I figured from checking the weather, just past Cleveland the ground was clear.  Since I was on the road in the middle of the night, there wasn’t a lot of holiday traffic on the turnpike.  The pups and I arrived at my parents’ house just in time for my parents to get up to see my dad off to work.  In other words, we got there around 5 a.m. 

Spike thought Luna Belle made a good seat.  She didn't agree.
I swear having a second “kid” has added at least 30 minutes to the trip!  Even when we don’t stop for potty breaks!

Mom and I hit up a few stores during the day, mostly for groceries – and in search of a particular brand of gingerbread cookies for dad.  We came back to the house and, after putting a couple of pies in the oven, cleaned.  Around 3 p.m., right before Mom was to put the turkey in the oven, the power went out.  After figuring out that it was the neighborhood – not just their house – we decided to go to the movies.  We had been told that the electricity wouldn’t be back on for a couple of hours – if not longer!  It was getting dark and cold, so there wasn’t much we could do at home other than nap. 

So off to the theater we went.

Both of us wanted to see The Book Thief.  We had both read the book and loved it.  Feeling a little nervous as to how well the film adaptation would be, we settled in and hoped for the best.  What a wonderful movie!  There were a few changes from the book, as to be expected.  Nonetheless, we were both pleased. 

By the time we returned home, the electricity was working once again.  Dad was expected home from work shortly after we got there.  Mom was finally able to put the turkey in the oven, but it was going to be several hours before it finished cooking.  This meant we were not having a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving.

Luna Belle sniffing her sleeping Grandma.
The turkey cooked.  Dad and I chatted and watched our beloved Steelers play football.  Mom napped on the couch.  Overall, it was a nice evening.

Eventually, after Dad had gone to bed, the turkey was finished.  Just in time for Mom and I to hit up a few stores for Black Friday Shopping!

Now, I am not a fan of Black Friday shopping.  I hate the crowds and the rudeness.  It seems like the deals aren’t worth the hassle, either.  But my mom LOVES it.  She knows that I will go with her – because I know how much it means to her.  We arrived at the stores a few hours into the madness, which may have contributed to the fact we didn’t buy much.  Well, during that part of the shopping day at least.  We arrived back home around 3:30 a.m.  Mom made mashed potatoes and veggies to pack in my dad’s lunch and I finally had my turkey dinner at 4 a.m.  It was delish.

After a few hours of sleep, we both woke up to do some last minute cleaning and preparations.  A cousin of mine and her boyfriend drove up from West Virginia so they could attend the Michigan-Ohio State game (Go Blue!).  Once they arrived, we all headed north to Great Lakes Crossing – a gigantic indoor outlet mall.  Being that it was Black Friday, the place was PACKED.  It was here that I did the majority of my shopping.  After several hours, we left there and headed to another mall closer to my parents’ house.  We shopped some more before heading home for the night.

Our first view of UM's Big House
The next day was game day.  We all got up early and headed to Ann Arbor.  After dropping my cousin and her boyfriend off at The Big House, Mom and I hit up a few different stores in the region.  I “watched” the game via my phone while we shopped.  After the game, we took a scenic route back towards Detroit, stopping at another mall on our way to the house.

Since my cousin’s boyfriend had to work the next day, they left that evening.  Mom and I talked about going to see a movie, but we were both too tired. 

Sunday morning I set an alarm for 5:15 a.m. so I could say good-bye to Dad before he left for work.  I knew I would be heading home before he was done for the day.  Of course, I went back to bed after he left.  I’m not sure he fully understands how special it is that I woke up that early voluntarily!

After packing up the car, Mom and I headed to the casino for lunch and a little of penny slot playing.  I won enough to fill the gas tank and pay the turnpike fee.  Around 5 p.m. the pups and I hit the road and came back to Ohio, where the hubby was waiting for us.  The drive home was quicker than the drive there, even with the abundance of traffic.  We were all happy to be home and sleep in our own bed again.

That was my Thanksgiving weekend.  I can’t believe that Christmas is just a few weeks away.  Most of my shopping is finished.  Christmas cards have been sent (other than a few that I needed addresses to complete). I even did a little decorating!  Next up – holiday baking.  What to make this year? 

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