Have you ever had one of those weekends that you just don't want to end? We did.
It started, for me, on Thursday. I took the day off so I could get the house in order before the big weekend away. This was my second of 4 weekends away from home this month, so the extra time helped set my mind at ease. I cleaned house in the morning and shopped in the afternoon. Overall it was a great day. I also dropped Maggie off at the vet and took Meghan to Mom Davis' house, since she was keeping her for the weekend.
Friday morning started early. Lorenzo, Alex and I had a 8am flight out of DFW to O'hare, so we needed an early start. At 4:44 a.m. Alex came running into the room. He was dressed, his teeth were brushed and he was ready. Obviously, he is my son, as I had been lying in bed for a half an hour awake too.
We got going and headed to the airport. Disappointingly, we discovered that the Chick Fil-a on Macarthur didn't open until 6:30, so we ate that the Chili's in the airport instead. Lorenzo genuinely enjoyed my newly earned gold flight status, as we had special (and I mean shorter) security lines and got to board in Group 1. I must admit, I am enjoying it too.
The flight wasn't exciting and I am glad for that. Alex finished his October book reports, so we could enjoy the weekend without homework over our heads. Once in Chicago, we got in the rental and headed to South Bend.
Traffic wasn't too bad, except for some construction on 294 and 80. We arrived at 1 and stopped in for a quick visit with Putt. Lunch was at Macri's and then we headed to the bookstore for shopping.
After doing our part to bolster the Indiana economy, we had a quick visit with Karen Putt at the alumni office. From there, we split. Alex and Lorenzo headed to the band practice, while I walked over the the Grotto. All of the candles were lit and it was beautiful. There was a priest giving blessings. I thanked God for another wonderful year of blessings and feeling refreshed, went to meet Alex and Lorenzo. The band practice was going well. Alex made some friends with his football and was enjoying running around with them.
From there, we made our trip to Meijer to support the tailgate. I got the supplies for Bloody Mary's and we added a few other items.
We had plans to meet Jeff Squyres at Doc Pierce's for dinner at 8. Alex was showing signs of fatigue but wasn't ready to give up yet. We headed to dinner and met up with John Shipman and one of Jeff's computer colleagues. We had fun remebering stories and catching up. About 5 minutes before dinner was served, Alex put his head down and fell asleep. He didn't wake up until morning. Poor kid. When he did finally wake up Saturday he said, "Mom, I don't remember eating my popcorn shrimp.". That's because he didn't.
So, Saturday morning, we awoke early again to prepare for the tailgate. Lorenzo and Alex went out for coffee, donuts and Chick Fil-a, (he was not to be deterred!), while I got up and ready. We helped Putt, Karen Putt and Erin load the cars and headed to campus.
The tailgate was in full swing by 8:45 with flags flying, beer flowing and Mary's mixing. A great time was had by all.
The game started at 1:30 and Alex and I sat together. It was raining slightly, but our ponchos kept us and our nachos dry. There was a family sitting next to us with a son of eight, who made friends quickly with Alex. There were many touchdowns and most were in our end zone. We were in the upper deck behind the students. Alex had a great time and enjoyed the interception for a touchdown the most.
The game ended and we stayed to watch the band play and sing our alma mater. It was a beautiful day for Irish football.
We met Lorenzo back at the tailgate and partied with the group until the sun was well set and the crowds were diminished. With a pizza from Brunos for dinner, our day ended with us watching the replay as we nodded off on the couch.
Sunday, Lorenzo, Alex and I had breakfast at Bibblers and headed back to Chicago. We bought a lottery ticket, because you can't win if you don't play and the jackpot was $125 million. Our flight was again, uneventful, and we made it safely home.
It's been a while since I have seen the Irish win at home. My last few trips to ND have had heartbreaker endings. I am glad we got a win this weekend. But mostly, I am glad to have a family like mine.
Alex was extremely well behaved for the weekend. Lorenzo and I had fun and got to meet some old friends. My in-laws took great care of Meghan, as always, and we all got home safe and sound. This is one of those times that it's really good to be me.