My truly happy weekend continues. Usually when the kids are all here, I let them go off wherever in the afternoon while I read, nap and fix supper. Yesterday Colin woke me from a sound sleep to say, "Your house will be full of people in 30 minutes." Luckily we were going to the Star Cafe--all 16 of us. That's a nostalgia trip for us--good friends Betty and Don own it, Colin worked there once for about three months, Lisa pitched in a few evenings, and all of us ate there a lot. And I used to work the cash register every Saturday night for six or seven years--they paid me in steak and wine and I had a good time. But I quit my Saturday night routine and haven't been back in a while--the food is delicious but not for one on a diet (I had 3/4 of a bacon cheeseburger along with guilty conscience), and the kids had gotten my favorite Black Forest cake for dessert. We had a noisy happy dinner--luckily the other patrons in the back were an equally noisy party about as large as ours, though they didn't have little kids running around. The grown children gave me a memory book--they had solicited letters, comments, etc. from as many of my friends as they could think of and said I'll have to help them think of others. I had a stash of letters and printed out emails to add to it, and today was going through deleting emails and found more I should print out. It's truly a treasure, and I am flattered by many of the things people have, near and dear, long-distance friends, and casual acquaintances, have said about me and my professional career. I will be writing thank-you notes but it may take me a while.
Then we came home--Megan and Jordan gave me a DKNY pair of lounging pajamas. I thought it was a really cute outfit that I could wear to the office when I run by or to Central Market or to have a porch drink with the neighbors (I'll definitely do that anyway) but Megan had giggling fits trying to explain to me they were pajamas and were to be treated as such. (Maybe I'll get one of them to take a picture of me in my new pajamas.) If we had gone to Jordan's house today, I would deliberately have worn them (Megan said, "You are so bad!") but instead that crew came here combining their leftovers with mine. Yes, I was still wearing the pajamas and probably will at dinner tonight.
Now they're off to ride the zoo train, meeting their father's brother-in-law (of whom we're all fond) for ice cream and then to go to the community swimming pool. I am quietly at home doing a load of dishes, followed by a laundry, reading, napping, and finishing the dinner that I started this a.m. They'll all be back for supper, except, I think, the Frisco Alters will head for home. Mel didn't realize they weren't leaving when Jamie got back from his run this a.m., so she had left their dog in. Poor thing made an 80-mile round trip to let him out. I wouldn't be surprised if they stay for supper--two tamale pie casseroles with polenta instead of tamales. The Austin branch will leave after dinner, but the Houston Alters are staying another night. Morgan, almost four, said when she arrived, "We're staying three whole nights!"
10:30 Sunday night: You can never count on the Alters to be predictable. Today they were talking about a plan for our family trip to Breckenridge at Christmas, and I finally said I didn't want to hear a plan until it was the final one. Megan agreed that was good. Tonight Mel never came back from Frisco, so Jamie and the girls left just before dinner. Megan and her family were staying for supper and then heading out; but after supper, she announced they were spending the night. So I have two families tonight--the Austin Hudgeons and the Houston Alters. I am not worrying about cleaning the house, any of that. The Hudgeons are leaving very early in the morning, but the Houston Alters are staying for lunch--and Colin is going to hang some pictures, replace an air filter, etc. for me. We'll lunch early at Carshon's and then they'll be on their way. Tomorrow night the neighbors will come for leftover tamale pie--a whole casserole of it!
It's been a great weekend--and I am bone weary!