Wednesday, July 19, 2017

That's a Wrap (Leg #2)

After leaving the kids with Grandma and Grandpa at the Lodge in Minocqua and dropping Tom off at the airport in Madison, I headed to my parents' house to celebrate my dad's birthday. Just the three of us - my mom, my dad, and me - made for the quietest family gathering I'd experienced in more than a decade, but we had a good time never-the-less.
G-Paul with his birthday chocolate pie.
Meanwhile, the kids continued to tube...
...and keep their grandparents on their toes.
And Tom moved Tux's Bey Blade stadium from
Will's room into our room so they could bunk together.
The following morning my mom and I hopped in the car and drove down to Washington, IL, where we spent the next three days helping my sister set up her classroom. (Her entire elementary school is in the process of relocating to a new building, and while a moving company took care of the heavy lifting, Sara still had 10 years worth of teaching materials to unpack and organize.) My organizing skills and OCD tendencies came in handy, and I discovered a talent for putting together (the backgrounds of/for) bulletin boards. I also reconfirmed just how hard teachers work in the "off season" and without pay to prepare for each school year. Hug a teacher, my friends. Or at least buy them an extra box of #2 pencils.
Two of my many fabric covered and bordered bulletin boards.
After three days of working in Sara's classroom, we changed gears and worked for three days on our annual garage sale. We cleared out lots of clothes, toys, and housewares; made a little money; and best of all, enjoyed our traditional garage sale donut breakfasts, sub sandwich lunches, kid-run lemonade stand, and hours of chatting in lawn chairs. I feel a little like I've been hit by a bus, but it's nothing a day or two of long walks and good nights sleep won't cure!
They made a total of $12 but drank approximately
$23 worth of lemonade while working their stand.
Washington experienced some crazy weather - strong, slow-moving thunderstorms accompanied by constant, uninterrupted lightening and a few funnel clouds in neighboring counties - during my visit. At home I don't bat an eye when a storm rolls through, but here in Illinois, where my sister's family lost nearly everything in a battle against a tornado, inclement weather translates to increased caution and even concern. It also translates to increased appreciation for the rainbow after the storm.

On Sunday we headed back to Madison (I should have kept track - starting when we left College Station - of the number of miles logged on this trip), ready to kick off Leg #3!

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