Monday, April 08, 2013

Whew! a hard weekend...

Okay, I'm about to do that whiney thing that I HATE when people do. Consider that your warning.

I had a hard weekend here in bead land.

It was my own fault. I took my girls to The Ancestral Homeland (Ohio!) to visit grandparents, Great-Grammie, Aunties and Unkies, cousins and more. I planned on driving them up there on Sunday and then returning back to NC on Thursday afternoon, in plenty of time to greet our visiting artist (Diana of Suburban Girl Studio) and get all set up for her trunk show AND Carol Owen's class this weekend. Of course, the trip would be a bit squeezed in but if I don't go when I can squeeze it in, I'll never go.

So I went. We went.

The trip up was kinda, sorta uneventful. We stopped at our favorite mid-way place, Tamarack, and bought some hand-made goodies. We ate too much Easter basket candy. We listened to podcasts and talked and watched the weather. We cheered as we crossed bridges and went through tunnels, looked for deer by the road side and laughed at the dogs in the cars driving next to us. Even my speeding ticket in Meigs County, Ohio, didn't dampen the fun.

The visit was fabulous. We had a week of really, really awesome visit fun that included tons of cousin-play time, fancy hair-do's with Auntie, our first-ever Varsity Men's Volleyball game (go Rocks!) and a tour of an inspiring Mark Rothko show at the Columbus Museum of Art. We hugged and chatted and laughed and talked. Then we got up really early to come home so I could begin the weekend.

Uh-oh. Snow, traffic, snow, more traffic, accidents on the side of the road, keep the gas tank full, more snow, is it April?, completely stopped traffic, glad we stocked up on snacks, let's turn the van off for a while to conserve gas, MORE SNOW?!?, traffic moves, exits are closed, more snow, traffic moving again but heck, it's so late, time to get a hotel room.

We finally pulled off in Bluefield, West Virginia only to find out that everyone else on Interstate 77 had thought to pull off for the night, as well. There were no hotel rooms, even at the hotel next to the biker bar and 'adult entertainment' venue. We finally pulled in to a booked hotel just to eat our take-out dinner in the lobby and use the bathroom. When I asked them where I could buy 3 sleeping bags at 11:00 pm on a Thursday in Bluefield, Nick the Night Manager took one look at my worn-out face and my two tired girls and convinced two unrelated guests to share a room so we didn't have to sleep in our van. Thank you, Nick of the Quality Inn in Bluefield. You are awesome. King-sized bed + snuggly Mom in the middle of two tired girls = perfect night.

The next morning we awoke a bit late and strapped ourselves back in to our seats to come home. I hit the ground running and tried my best not to look too road-worn as I helped Diana set up and found her hubby, Colin, the perfect BBQ in our very own parking lot. On Saturday, Diana had a fabulous day of bead-selling at Ornamentea  (including a door-busting, early morning visit from her posse who traveled many miles to see her!) I probably wasn't at my best all day; I was still worn out and even disoriented, but the day was really fun.

And that Crunchie bar? A gift from Diana. I ate it Sunday morning, with a cup of coffee. Yes, it was really delish. Somehow, the Brits really do get candy just right...