Saturday, February 21, 2009

Money Rules

If I had remembered to take my new camera to Utah with me last week I could just post some great pictures and not worry about saying much! But since my memory failed me (which is getting to be a rather regular occurrence), my ramblings will be a poor substitute for what could have easily been conveyed visually! With the Sedgwicks at Sundance all week, the temptation to join them for a few days was just too great to resist. I never cease to be grateful for frequent fliers which allow me succumb to such temptations on a last minute’s notice. I was also grateful to be picked up by them in SLC and treated at The Pie, as in pizza pie. They had spent most of the day skiing, then took their family to Temple Square which coordinated nicely with my evening arrival. Jessica now has an iPhone which has, among many things, a GPS system which guided us ‘almost’ right to The Pie – which, by the way, is a University of Utah hot spot, and understandably so – it was very tasty right down to the last cookie crumb of the pizookies. By the time we arrived back at Sundance it was way past everyone’s bedtime, including Grandma Becky who was still on Eastern Time. People weren’t sleeping in on this vacation, though – Madi, Caleb, and Lucy were on the slopes with their mom and dad nearly every day, and every day the skiing/snow was reported to be fabulous. After a skiing lesson or two those kids were taking on the top of the mountain! They did the same with Mexican Train Dominoes – after a lesson or two they conquered the game and were strategizing and beating an old pro….me. Sedgwick geniuses at work. I totally enjoyed observing how the Sedgwicks settled in and took full advantage of the cabin: skiing by day, fireside smores by night and a massage or two squeezed in here and there. They said it was the perfect vacation and I believed them, and I also loved them when they were perfect sports about having to leave two days earlier than planned to accommodate a rental (money rules the cabin, I’m afraid). Still, they had a full week ‘smorzing’ at Sundance and were lucky enough to be able to spend the evicted last two days in Deer Valley with Dave’s brother and his family. Because it was Valentine’s week, Jessica was doing something special for Dave every day – the Seven Days of Valentines which is their tradition. The day before Valentine’s is the BIG one for them – their anniversary. On that day Jessica resisted the slopes and spent the day in Provo setting up a scavenger hunt for Dave that would lead him to all of their favorite haunts from their BYU days. I was glad I was there to play with the kids later that day and into the evening so those two could decipher and track down the clues unhindered. The next morning was crunch time as we had to clean the cabin and get out before we got snowed in and we barely made it! A huge snowstorm had moved in and even with the Pathfinder in 4-wheel, I was slipping and sliding down Timpview Road only to be met by a snowplow coming up the road at full speed totally oblivious to the possibility that another vehicle might be on the road. We missed each other by the hair of our chinny chin chins. That was only the beginning – traffic was backed up Sundance canyon road and moving at snail’s pace. What usually takes 20 minutes (from cabin to Provo) took an hour and half, which made me almost an hour and half late for my hair appointment with Julie. I love having a hair pro in the family and Julie is definitely becoming a pro. Thanks Julie for shaping me up  I was also an hour and half late for an afternoon with Connie before catching my flight, but we did manage CafĂ© Rio and a little time for visiting.
Beau during most of my time in UT was in CA with friends and, might I say, his girlfriend, Amy, for the long holiday weekend. We did go together to the Phi Kappa Phi honor society induction, but opted to skip the speakers after a very ordinary but expensive BYU catered meal. I used to love BYU food – I’ve changed my mind (well, I still love their mint brownies!). I do love Beau and won’t be changing my mind on that.
One of the best things about my trip last week was that I was able to route home through Dallas and do a layover for Lauren’s blessing day. She is still as cute as ever and as good as ever. Taylor let me sleep in her bed and Kate told me she didn’t want me to leave. Ahhh, the joys of being a grandma in demand, or at least feeling like you are demand. Josh, Dagmar and family are with the Crofts this weekend – full, fun, lively house there, I’m sure.
I made it back to GA on the first flight out Monday morning, located Gary’s car in the parking lot at the airport, and headed straight to Athens. Jake had a combination rhinoplasty/septaplasty that morning and I got there just in time to give him a big hug on the recovery bed, take him back to his apartment…and pay the bill! At least I thought I was going to pay the bill, but reality hit and I only ‘started’ paying the bill. It was a $20,000 surgery with our insurance only covering 70% after we meet the $3000 deductible (I naively thought the insurance would kick in at 100% after the deductible). I nearly burst into tears at the payment desk
Jake is doing good, in fact, this is what he said:
‘I can't even begin to say how good my nose feels. It is sooooo clear. I'm already breathing really well out of it, and I'm sure it will only continue to get better. It feels amazing. I just want to say thank you to you and Dad so much for allowing me to do this. I can already tell a huge difference. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.’
‘You’re welcome’ – no more billing tears for Jake’s mom. It was worth it.
Sundance seems to be the place to go this winter with Crofts planning for the first week of March and Taskers the last week of March. Keep your fingers crossed that you won’t get displaced in the event of the money rule/rental booking! Just wanted to add some suspense to the planning….
Gary is in Saudi through March 3 and for the next two or three months, he will be home for two weeks, there for two weeks. Money does rule, doesn’t it? We feel blessed that he has this work during a time when a lot of people are out of work, and he is working in a country which isn’t too affected by world economic problems. Over there, oil rules and money flows. The reality of his life there is captured in the one photo for this blog sent by someone who remembered his camera. One picture says it quite well, don’t you think?

Sunday, February 1, 2009