Memorial Day weekend roundup

The three-day weekend started with me driving down our 79 house street on Friday night to see each and every lawn adorned with a little American flag. I found out from Elise that our neighbor, Stacey, had placed them in everyone’s lawn. We soon found ourselves at the Fender residence. I forgot why we found ourselves over there, but that lead up to us ordering a couple pizzas and going back to our house. Maly and I drove to Oak Hill to pick up dinner, and soon we were back at the house and the seven of us shoved our faces full of pizza.

Next we hit the driveway to play on PlasmaCars. Next thing we know, we’re having another mini block party (we wound up having a mini block party last Friday, too). A pitcher of margaritas showed up, we broke out the lawn chairs and fifteen or so of us took in the night air and just had fun hanging out in the driveway. Oh, and we kept Maly up until 10 p.m.

On Saturday we made a quick trip to the ol’ HoPot to return some stuff, buy a couple plants and some topsoil. We got back to the house and I filled in the low spot that was once the path on the side of our house with the topsoil. I then took the 1,500 lbs. worth of flagstone that used to be aforementioned path and loaded into the car. Then we were off to the Engler’s house for a steak dinner. The kids played in the pool in the backyard and John and I got finally hang out outside of work. And I don’t think we even talked about work. It was also the first time I’d been to their house since November, so it was cool to see all the things they’ve done to the house and the backyard. We came home after visiting for a couple hours, and again managed to keep Maly up past 10 p.m.

On Sunday we ran some errands, patronized Which Wich for the third weekend straight (I love that place but am now, officially, burnt out). What was so cool was at some point during lunch, Maly switched into Daddy’s girl. She got out of her chair, walked over to me and pulled herself onto my lap and just held onto me. She wanted nothing more than to just hang out and stay latched on to me. She wasn’t being needy; I guess she was just having dad withdrawals. It was really awesome. After lunch and a quick trip to Academy, we came home, Maly took a nap and we watched Wayne’s World. That took me back… I couldn’t tell you how many years it’s been since last seeing that movie. Elise also had to log in our Nielsen Ratings journal (yeah, we became a Nielson family a few weeks ago. $30 is $30!). We were saddened to see that we have ~500 channels, many of which we didn’t even know we had. And here we sit tonight, TV off, because American Idol ended last week. Elise even called Time Warner last week to get bump us down to basic cable, they told her they would gladly do that, but our monthly phone and Internet fees would increase. Awesome!

Sunday evening our neighbors, Brandon and Stacey had their somewhat-annual Memorial Day party. They had ~70 people over and served fajitas and beer. We had a blast. Kids got to eat and play, then went to bed. The adults stayed up way too late. I had to cash out at around 1 a.m. Elise stayed out until 2 a.m., which made for a groggy Monday morning.

Late Monday afternoon we drove out to the Balcones Country Club to hang out with the Swendners. The kids got to play in the pool, we watched a belly flop competition and just had a good time hanging out in the hot Texas sun by the pool. We went back to Marc & Cyndi’s house and ordered pizzas, then went out to the fairway that backs up to their backyard, chased fireflies and let the kids wear themselves out. Maly was quickly getting tired, ran up to me and had me envelop her in my arms, pointed up to the putting green that was fast disappearing into the night and said, “there choo-choo train. No choo-choo train.” And she kept saying it. So after repeating that a few times, I just said, “It’s okay, Daddy stopped the choo-choo train. It’s not coming.” Then she put her head down on my shoulder and said, “Daddy stopped choo-choo train.”

IN MY DAUGHTER’S EYES, I STOPPED A CHOO-CHOO TRAIN! I don’t know of a greater power that I possess. That’s pretty awesome.

Soon after we headed back home, again putting Maly to bed around 10 p.m. Tonight we witnessed the wrath of a sleep deprived 2-year-old. She had a melt down, freaking out during dinner, bath and brushing of the teeth. It got to the point where I found it necessary to grasp my daughter’s cheeks, forcing her mouth open while she bawled, tears pouring down her cheeks and past the corners of her mouth as I brushed her teeth. That was hard to do, and I felt so much like I was doing something to hurt her, but just kept in the back of my mind that she was suffering from an over-exhausting three-day weekend. And knowing that if I can stop a choo-choo train, I can damn sure brush a toddlers teeth, although the latter is much, much more difficult.

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