Four Days (of Life and Workouts) Without Half My Family

>> Saturday, December 10, 2016

My mother-in-law had hip replacement surgery nearly 2 weeks ago, and her 5 kids have been helping out around the house as she's recovering. My wife and Charlie (my 2-year-old) went down to help Monday through Thursday evening. FaceTime calls with kids are not very sexy:


Push it out, buddy.

Here are a few pics from the days Mama was gone:


MONDAY, DAY 1:

I picked Henry up from school, and we went to Blue Sun Soda Shop in the north metro. I got a case of assorted soda, Henry played a lot of games of FREE pinball, and we both got some candy. Then we stopped at Menards for a few things, and played on their big (dirty) snow pile in the parking lot:



See LOTS more pics of our trip to Blue Sun Soda on my "root beer blog." They just added on to their store, and this was the first time I'd been back to see that. And I THINK I've now had (or just recently purchased) every root beer they carry.


TUESDAY, DAY 2:

We just hit a deep freeze that started Tuesday. But Henry insisted on biking to school:



I did lots of things around the house, had a long class (critique, then talked about artist statements for the final), then QUICK went for a run as the sun was going down. I wanted to take it easy on my legs and run on some of the trails just across the Mississippi from our house like I did last month. I got down there as we were losing light:




"New" (to me) trail that I'd never ran before, north of the Greenway.


Heading back as the streetlights come on, crossing under the rail bridge. It's a 20' drop
to the water just off those rocks. (And it was darker than this photo makes it seem.)


WEDNESDAY, DAY 3:

I spent most of the morning and early afternoon grading projects from the day before. That evening, Henry and I ran a few errands (Target and SUPER SECRET SHOPPING FOR MAMA'S CHRISTMAS PRESENT), and then ate at Baja Sol - one of Henry's favorite places:




We try to send Mama a "bedtime selfie" every night. This was from night #3.


THURSDAY, DAY 4:

We got a dusting of snow, and AGAIN, Henry insisted on biking to school:



I did a lot of things around the house, and went for a quick run in the morning. It was 18 degrees with 5 degree windchill. My beard got a bit frosty after 40 mins:




Close up. Having the beard doesn't make more ice appear, but it leads to
bigger chunks. Note the 2 in the upper corners on either side.

Then I went to volunteer in the lunch room at Henry's school before heading off to teach my class. The kids just came from a mass with the Archbishop, and then he stopped by during lunch. The big kids LOVED talking to him, and the little kids really didn't care. Here's a pic I Instagrammed of Henry punching in his code to pay for his milk (I was working the computer that day), and then the Archbishop chatting with Henry (as Henry munched on his kiwis):



Mama and Charlie came back that night. The next day, Henry only had a half-day of school, so we went for a mid-day 15-degree hike along the Mississippi for an hour as we broke lots of ice:



SIDENOTE: look above to the photo of my Tuesday night run under the rail bridge. The Mississippi River is CLEAR. The ice formed QUICKLY as we hit this major cool-down. On a run Thursday morning, it had big chunks of ice. And on Friday during our hike, it was quite icy:


Charlie and Mama literally RIGHT across the river from where I ran 3 days before.

Keep resting up, Grandma Monica! Hope your new hip is treating you well! But I'm glad to have my house of 4 back. :)

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