Thumbs up: I’m baaaaaak. And out of the car. Happy dance.
Thumbs up: I thought I could. And I did. Ate well. 99% of the time. If you don’t bring it in the car you can’t eat it in the car. What a simple idea! In the almost 36 total driving hours, I snacked on seven colored peppers, two bags of snap peas, a half-dozen apples, a smattering of cheese and jerky, two ounces of almonds and two servings of sugar free candies. I ate my packed meals for lunches and dinners (three salads from home for the trip out and two salads from the store for the trip back). Thumbs up for Wegmans: OMG – this grocery store’s prepared food section is amazing!
Thumbs up: Restaurant meals. Yes, I stayed on plan even at my three meals “out.” One night I had scallops with broccolini and roasted tomatoes with leeks, and just two very small bites of my husband’s molten lava chocolate cake. (Of the five people at dinner, I was the only one who didn’t eat at least one roll or order dessert.) For my one lunch (outside the car) I had a yummy salmon with pineapple and mango salsa and double veggies on the side instead of the starch. Thumbs down that I suspect the veggies were only pretending to be healthy since they tasted awfully good, making me suspect the addition of butter and cheese. My last restaurant meal was a quick dinner at Panera near our hotel at the end of a long day. A small thumbs down that I was so tired that I didn’t realize that I had been given a baguette instead of the whole grain roll I requested, until I was halfway through eating it.
Thumbs up: What I DIDN’T eat. That my husband or meal companions DID. Candy and more candy and, yes, more candy. Cookies, and more cookies, and MORE cookies. French fries. Banana chocolate chip bars. Chocolate covered granola bars. Ah, bars. It was interesting to reflect on how I would have eaten had I not been really motivated to stay on track on this trip. And, just for Leslie, I need to add that I walked right past a display of Devil Dogs with hardly a second thought! (Hubby said, “You should take a picture.” So I did.)
Thumbs down: Technology. No surprise with my track record. Top of the list are the CD player that broke halfway through our first book on tape and the spotty cell service that meant losing this post midway through my first unsaved draft. Thumbs up that I did manage to have some internet time from the car, slow and intermittent as it was. The internet in the hotels was equally uncooperative.
Thumbs exhausting: Apartment hunting. On Saturday we saw eight in eight hours. Or maybe it was nine. (There was a lot of “down time” in between since we had no idea how close to schedule appointments.) Thumbs up that we found several viable options for our son. Thumbs crossed that the one he wants is still available by the time the credit check gets completed today. Thumbs down that he chose the most expensive of everything we saw. But it’s his money and his choice and with his new job he’ll be able to afford it. It’s a brand new unit in a building that is still under renovation. It’ small but very nice. And in a great location. Thumbs up for walkable Historic Downtown Bethlehem. Thumbs down for street parking. Thumbs up at how excited I am for my son and I hope he feels it too. Thumbs down that he can’t take occupancy until a couple of weeks after graduation so will have to figure out what to do with his stuff in between. Thumbs down that I can’t let go yet and am sending many email reminders of things to add to his “to do” list. Sigh.
Thumbs down: College housing. All I can say is OMG. My son’s house was a disaster. He says it’s his two housemates. He might be right. But I’ve seen HIS room too. Just saying. Because I’m a mother and a neat freak, I couldn’t help myself from suggesting he not let his pristine new apartment get like that. Note to self: add “buy cleaning supplies” to son’s “to do” list.
Thumbs up: Girlfriends and girl friends. We got to meet our son’s girlfriend. I’m not sure that’s how he refers to her but according to Facebook they have been “in a relationship” since mid-February. She seems very nice. We went out to dinner with her and one of my son’s housemates, probably his best friend at school, who happens to be a girl. (We’d met her last summer when she drove back to Kansas with my son for a week.) Thumbs up that against the odds, the three main women in my son’s life are all redheads! Although the girlfriend dyes hers. (Okay, I dye mine too, but only to cover the gray.)
Thumbs up: The weather. In PA. Thumbs down: the storm that rolled through about 9:00pm on our drive home. There were warnings about like “high winds” and “hail.” Fortunately it wasn’t that bad and we got out of it relatively quickly and decided to take advantage of our early morning start and fast pace to drive straight through. We got home around 1:00am (cst) which to me felt like 2:00am (est). Thumbs down at how thoroughly drained, physically and emotionally, I feel today. I think a return to bed is in order. Okay, I’m back. Feeling a bit better after my first nap but still like I have a car trip hangover.
Thumbs down. Ouch. Ouch, ouch, ouch. For some reason my shins were killing me beginning on Saturday morning. My guess is that my lack of cardio (since early December) was making my legs complain. Loudly. Uphill. Downhill. Upstairs. (And thumbs down that all the stairs in Bethlehem seem to be unusually steep and shallow.) Thumbs down that my back really, really, really hurt. Saturday was not a good “body” day. Thumbs up for my mom’s lumbar support pillow that I used in the car. Thumbs up that with all my other worse aches and pains, my calf didn’t bother me at all.
Thumbs up: Sleeping pills. Thanks to my mom, again, for teaching me that travel trick.
Thumbs explained: Why drive? A reader asked if there was a reason. No and yes. We had looked into flying at first. But our son was taking a while to figure out a game plan, which would impact flights, and maybe he’d even find a place all on his own requiring no visit at all! By the time we had figured out firm dates, the airfares had skyrocketed. And there are no direct flights, so it takes a fair amount of time and the hassle of changing planes. My husband actually prefers to drive so he can be master of his own destiny rather than at the mercy of the airlines. And I do appreciate being able to over-pack if I want to:)
Thumbs to come: Future road trip(s). Or maybe plane trips. The jury is still out on how we’ll get back to PA for graduation next month (between helping my son with whatever he needs help with and my having to now request time off from work). Because, as with our last trip, dates (other than commencement itself) are up in the air. And chances are pretty good that I’ll be going back again for the big move in early June.
Thumbs up: Dorothy was right. There’s no place like home. Hope my son feels the same way about his new place AND about this house where he’ll always be welcome.