2. I get very anxious before I travel. I'm not scared to fly but I just feel weird when I leave my family. My preparation to leave seems to include doing laundry until I'm sure there is not a sock left and going to the grocery store and stocking up on an insane about of snacks. Not sure if this is guilt induced but for some reason I think if they have enough snacks it will make it easier that I'm gone.
3. Emory put a picture of herself in my suitcase and took a picture of me to school with her each day. She wept when I was walking out the door. She has been upset the last couple of times I have left, even if it's for a night. My fear was realized when Jason called and told me she was upset because it reminded her of when I left to go to "Mommy School" (rehab). She had just turned 6 when I went so she does remember. I just give her extra love and assure her that I am coming back. Then I make sure I am "on the beam" with my program. Am I thanking God for each sober day he gives me? Am I talking about things I need to talk about and not holding things in? Am I growing in my relationship with God and trying to be of service to Him? Every day. Her tears and fears are a good reminder to me of how much my sobriety is worth.
4. I really didn't take too many pictures. I was busy! Jason asked me what I did Thursday when he called and I said, "Walked Hattie to school, went to the Post Office, took Josie to school, picked Josie up from school, went to the grocery store, picked Hattie up from school, did homework, ate dinner (Mom was on cooking duty), bathed everyone, read books and put them to bed." And he said, "So basically everything you do here, but in New York." Exactly. I did get to spend time with some friends and I am happy to call them my friends, not just Betsy's. (New York gets the idea behind community. I will give them that. I think that we sometimes use our cars as a shield from other people. If you are walking where you are going, you have no shield from people. Love being a part of that community if only for a few days.)
5. I read a book the day I left for NYC. The whole book. I started it when I got on the van to go to the Atlanta airport and finished before I went to bed. It was called Burnt Mountain by Anne Rivers Siddons. I loved it until the end (strange ending) but what I loved more was reading. What mom has the time to read a book in one day? (Insert Fifty Shades of Grey jokes here. And no I haven't read them and don't plan to. Did you see the Amazon.com commercial on SNL?) That really is my favorite part about flying. Sometimes the flight goes by too fast and I don't want to land.
6. Every time I visit New York I fall a little more in love with this city. Without Betsy there to lead me around, I had to do it all by myself and I did. I texted her about a thousand times but I lived the life for a few days. I just can't really describe it. In my day to day life I just don't see what I see on an ordinary day there. Dog walkers, baby walkers, old people walkers. Celebrities and crazy people in the same block. I am still trying to stare into people's windows at night, although I am sure this is against New York city code (or maybe the law?). I want to ask every Nanny (or Manny) what the people they work for do for a living. I want to ask the doormen, who work the buildings around Central Park, who lives in their building that I might know. And I still get overwhelmed with the amount of people that live in one city block. My brain can't handle it.
7. Sunday we went to a 25 year celebration of Hippo Park, Betsy's local playground, about a block away from her building. It's in Riverside Park (remember the end of You've Got Mail?) and on the Hudson River. When we got to the park this is what we saw. Hundreds and hundreds of parked strollers. You couldn't take them into the playground area so you had to park them. This is the tiniest shot of how many there were. It looped around on two sides.
8. Let's talk about my baby. Lolly is the sweetest. She is walking and talking and singing. Without her mom around, she was all mine. I didn't really share her with Mimi (because I knew Mimi was staying an extra week). I will say that she is feisty. I knew she would have to be to deal with her big sister, Jo. She is also teething which resulted in some yucky diapers. Which resulted in me picking her up out of her high-chair at Artie's and sticking my hand straight in the poop that was so far up her back it almost touched her neck. Not kidding. We made an emergency trip to the bathroom and then went home as quickly as possible for a bath, both of us covered. It's been a long time since I had poop under my fingernails. I don't know if I could deal with that with anyone else's child, but I really didn't flinch since it was my Poppers.
9. One special part of this trip was spending Saturday afternoon with Hattie. Hattie loves Emory and whenever our families are together I don't usually get to spend time with her by herself. I snuck her out of the apartment while Josie was watching a movie and we went gallivanting around the city. I wanted to go where there were lots of people so we jumped on the subway and went to Columbus Circle. We went to FAO Schwartz and watched people dance on the piano (remember Big?), we watched street performers, walked by The Plaza, and shopped, of course. (Thanks Papa.) I loved walking and holding hands with her, not because I was scared she'd wander off but just because we wanted to hold hands.
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
10. Want to be really convicted about your phone usage? Read this. I am guilty.
11. Current kitchen dancing playlist.
*Somebody That I Used to Know/Goyte
*Lonely Boy/The Black Keys
*Turn You Inside Out/R.E.M.
*Feel so Close/Calvin Harris