Monday, September 28, 2015

Good as Gold

Well, this weekend was a bit of a mixed bag.  I don't even remember what we did Friday night.  The days alone with the boys are starting to run together a bit.  Rest assured there was probably some fighting and TV watching and possibly some knee hockey playing in the living room that resulted in someone getting injured.  It's nice the boys will play that together, but inevitably it turns into a stick-swinging disaster where someone gets hurt, so I've had to outlaw it for now unless I am participating...and even then it's very challenging.

Saturday we had all sorts of good intentions to have a good day, but that went downhill fast.  I wasn't feeling great--low energy, slightly queasy with some stomach rumbling, but strangely no actual digestive pyrotechnics.  It was weird.  We had talked about going to Strong Museum because I had free admission there this month through work, but with how I was feeling I knew we couldn't do a morning trip.  I put Carter down for his nap hoping for a quick but effective sleep, only to have him hang out wide awake for over an hour.  When he finally fell asleep at 3, I decided maybe I just needed to lay down for a bit while Jacob kept himself occupied.  I woke up a little after 4 and Carter woke up at 4:15.  In theory that would have left us time to go to the museum, but I still wasn't feeling great.  I was also concerned about chasing the kids (who would no doubt be super crazy (they're enough to handle at Wegmans, let alone a kids museum!)), and I was having a hard time figuring out the best way to handle dinner with Jacob not being able to eat there.  Honestly, it was right about then that I hit the solo parenting wall.  I'd just had enough.  It had been a rough day in general and the museum process overwhelmed me.  I apologized profusely to Jacob that I just couldn't be the fun Mommy that day.  Do you know how crappy it feels to get to that point?  But as much as many of my reasons to not go had to do with how the kids drive me nuts, ultimately it was my exhaustion and reservations that prevented us from going.  And I wanted Jacob to understand that I was taking part of the blame for it.  I thought he deserved to know that, because I genuinely felt bad.  I had promised it, and I just couldn't deliver.  That sucked.  What was worse was the realization that now I had to keep the kids occupied for the night and find something to make for dinner.  We were running low on so many things and I agonized over it for over an hour.  We'd already done two different versions of breakfast for dinner, had homemade and restaurant pizza, had store-bought chicken fingers, and a pasta option.  I'd already done grilled cheese, chicken nuggets, and mac and cheese for various weekend lunches.  I felt like I had exhausted every kid-friendly option ever.  In the end I just made homemade pizza again, since everyone would eat it and it was easy and fast.  We watched a movie (the baseball Air Bud--one of Jacob's old favorites that we hadn't seen in ages--Jacob's suggestion!), and that was it.

We knew we had a busy day scheduled for Sunday, and there was no getting out of that one!  At long last, it was the end of the World Indoor Lacrosse Championship, and Team Canada (Craig's team) was playing for the gold medal at 4pm.  The game was in Syracuse at the Carrier Dome on the SU campus.  We went to church as usual first, and Carter finally didn't cry when I left him at Sunday School...and yes, he enjoyed it again.  We had to stop at Wegmans on the way home, despite my attempts to avoid another trip with both boys.  We ran out of the kid-friendly sides (yogurt, string cheese, fruit) and milk, all at the same time, and I needed to head into the week stocked up!  It wasn't a relaxing trip, by any means, but I'd say it was above average...but that's still not saying much!  We had a quick lunch at home and appeared to have remained close to on time...that is, until Jacob went to try on his Canada gear.  Craig had gotten gear for all of us--a shirt for Carter, a shirt for me, and a couple shirts and shorts for Jacob, who has been extra gung-ho about this Canada thing.  I'm pretty sure he'd give up his U.S. citizenship right now, actually.  But the shorts were just a bit big in the waist and the shirts were both a little roomy and slightly longer than Jacob would prefer.  And no matter how many fixes I suggested or how many times I assured him any combination looked fine, he said he looked "like a junkyard" and rolled on the floor in tears.  He didn't even want to go.  I felt bad for him, but at the same time, he wasn't really acting rationally, either.  It took forever, but eventually he settled on just wearing his beloved Adidas shirt and pants (Team Canada's official sponsor), and we got on the road.

The trip was fine--sunny day, both kids napped, and getting there and parking were generally uneventful.  We had a bit of a walk from the lot to the stadium, but it was a beautiful day and we were all pretty giggly since Carter was referring to the top of the dome as a "cheese puff cloud".  Long story, but he kept saying it even after the game!  We met up with Craig and wandered through the little vendor village outside.

Inside we found our seats and settled in for the game.  The boys were excited and I tried to get a picture, but this was the best I got...

It was pretty interesting to see a box lacrosse setup in a facility that's usually the home of field lacrosse.  They had portable dasherboards and different turf than what was on the football field underneath.

The attendance was over 10,000, a record for this championship.  Most of the fans were for the Iroquois team, since they were not only the host team, but the team with the geographic proximity.  They were the only team that really gave Team Canada any trouble throughout the tournament, so it was sure to be a tough game.  In case you're wondering, Team USA beat Israel earlier in the day to earn the bronze medal.  Craig won one of those four years ago with Team USA in Prague.  Carter was a little squirmy during the game and Jacob had a random meltdown in the bathroom that underscores that we still have some work to do with him, but for the most part the game was good.

Half a smirk from my Team Canada boy
It was a close game for most of it, but Team Canada pulled away near the end and pulled off a 12-8 victory to clinch the gold medal! 

Craig figured he wouldn't get an actual medal, but he hoped to at least get a championship ring or something at some point.  It was cool to see all of the medals laid out for the ceremony.

Because the Iroquois hosted, there was a definite native feel to the event.  It felt very familiar since the Knighthawks games have the same kind of dancers, thanks to their owner's native heritage.
The dancers stand by as the Iroquois get their silver medals
It was nice to see all the players get their medals.  There were a lot of Knighthawks, too, and it felt good to see them win again.
Knighthawks goalie Matt Vinc walks past the trophy after getting his medal
It turned out that Craig got a medal after all!  After the ceremony was over, we headed down to the turf to celebrate with the other families.

Eventually they started taking up the turf and pushing the celebration further down the floor.  Carter was loving his chance to run, though.  I caught this blurry shot of him running through the net after it had been cut to give everyone a piece.

We said our goodbyes to Craig (again) since he was staying in town for the night.  Tonight was also the NLL draft, so he stopped at the house earlier today and then headed right up to Canada.  He'll be home in the wee hours of the morning, and it will be so nice to have him back.

We headed out to the car and got a great view of the sunset.  Syracuse University is up on a hill, and the view was really nice.

By the time we got down closer to the lot, most of the color had disappeared...all except these pink streaks.

We stopped at a McDonald's at the first rest stop along the Thruway, had a pleasant dinner and another stressful bathroom experience (Carter this time) before hopping in the car and heading home.  We had a little entertainment for part of the drive, as the lunar eclipse began along the way.  I was able to show Jacob how the moon was darkening before he fell asleep.  When we got home, I showed him the partial eclipse.  It looked something like this...

I got the kids in bed and kept checking the eclipse to see the blood moon.  Of course, just as it hit totality, it clouded over and I couldn't see anything.  Luckily, the clouds cleared before totality ended.  The reddish moon was really cool.

It was a nice night and it brought back memories of the last eclipse I watched, many years ago in my grandma's driveway across from my parents' house.  I was probably a teenager at the time, and this one seemed to be way better with the supermoon!

It's been a long stretch and it will be so nice to have Craig home!  And the gold medal isn't a bad addition to the household either!

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