(A two-part entry)
I am writing this post from a hotel room in Redondo Beach, California. This is only my second trip to California - my first trip to LAX Airport - and my first time at our corporate headquarters after being with this company for over five years. I will be here for the next three days before returning home and hopefully welcoming some sanity back into my brain. Work has been such a crazy whirlwind for the last month with so many big events to plan, and with this being the last of them -- and my last trip away from home for 2013 -- I can't wait until my plane touches back down in good ol' Iowa on Wednesday night.
I must say it's easier being away from home now than it was when the boys were babies. They can talk to me on the phone now, I know I'm not missing any big milestones like a first word or a first step, and I know that they fully understand how many days I will be gone - and that I WILL be coming home. However, I am a home body, I do not enjoy flying like I used to, and I could definitely do without the hassle of airport security. I'm so lucky that my trips are always brief, but the days are long and exhausting. I'm looking forward to returning to a calendar that's full of good things - birthday parties and football games - daycare concerts and Jaden's first basketball practice -- holidays and weddings. And though I'm missing the sights and sounds of Fall here in California, my room's view of the Pacific Ocean is helping fill that void a little bit. Here's where I should mention that my "boot camp" at 6am tomorrow morning is taking place on the beach on the ocean. Yes, there are perks.
So... during my only bit of downtime for the next 72 hours, I'm here to share a few pictures from our Panther Homecoming yesterday.
It was the perfect day for tailgating so we decided to head to the Dome early, take part in some of the entertainment... and the free wrist bands and beer for all alumni. ;) Next year with the boys a little older, we're going to make tailgating a regular part of our routine. I guess between now and then I need to stock up on all the finest tailgating essentials!
I convinced Jaden to get a picture with some of his Blessed Beginnings teachers! Brandon's always really excited to see his teachers in their dance team uniforms, but he's always too shy to pose with them for the camera.
We found the perfect patch of grass for Cody and Jaden to play catch, and Brandon was just as content to shake his poms and watch the people.
...and then during the game Brandon spotted someone else with their poms in their back pockets...
One of a kind, that one.
...it's now Thursday morning, and life is good. I finally got home at Midnight last night, and I'm so happy to be home. I had a fabulous work experience the last four days -- the event I planned went off without a hitch, everyone loved the agenda and organization of it all, and I am so blessed by the people I work with. Everyone in our company marvels at how lucky we all are to work with such a great group of individuals. We worked hard - but played hard, too. And I got to watch the sun set twice on the Pacific Ocean. But as pretty as that sunset was, I'm always happy to see Iowa corn fields again. I came home to a clean house (my husband knows my love language!), and two kids who were very happy to see their Mommy. Today, while the boys are at school and daycare, I am taking a full day for myself. I've got Blueberry Cheesecake melting in the Scentsy pot, and I'm going to catch up on the DVR, catch up on my sleep and stay in my sweatpants the whole time. We're going to eat leftover spaghetti for dinner, read Halloween books tonight after bath time, and start focusing on all the good that's in front of us. Fall is going by way too fast, and it's making me a little sad. Time to savor it from the comforts of home.