Monday, January 2, 2012

Parents visited!

So much cleaning for just a few hours of arms still ache from all the cleaning (mostly from using the leaf blower).

Parents arrived at around 5pm and stayed until around 9pm. We gave them a tour of our house and my mom complimented the bathroom tiles + the moldings and baseboards + the wood floors + some of our flowers outside (which my mom informed me are narcissus and not mutant daffodils like I thought. Except wait- the internet informs me that daffodils are another name for narcissus so I guess we were both right). And she didn't criticize anything! It was nice. :)

After we showed them around the house we sat in the living room and chatted for a few hours. My mom bought a kosher chocolate cake for us which we all ate some of (using paper plates and plastic utensils left over from our wedding, weirdly). My mom wanted to see our wedding painting which my brother had told her about, and looked at it for a long time. We talked about lots of various things like my job, my brother, my dad's surgery, etc. My mom was scared by our dogs and they didn't help by trying to jump all over my parents all the time.

Around 8pm I offered to take them on a small tour of our city, but they only had one open seat in their car (the rest was filled with luggage because they were just on vacation) so we left B behind at home and I sat in their car and directed them around town and showed them our two blocks of downtown + the university I work at. Then they drove me home and we stood outside talked for like another half hour. My parents ended by telling me I should call them more and I said they should call me more too and my dad suggested we make some kind of appointment for talking on the phone the way my grandparents always called my dad every Sunday at 10am (when they were still alive). So I said I'll think about it, mostly because I don't wan to commit to some kind of weekly phone call.

But all in all it went very well. My dad said as we were standing outside that I seem like I'm very happy living here. Unlike at my PhD graduation, my mom addressed B directly and they actually talked to each other. B was pretty quiet most of the night, but I think that's cause me and my parents talk on top of each other and interrupt each other all the time (which I think might be a jewish cultural thing), and he later was like "the only time I could get any word in edgewise was when I was interrupting you." ha.

Happy new year everyone! Now it's time to get back to the grind...classes start a week from today and I'm teaching a new one this semester, and since my class prep schedule is to prep each class the week before I teach it, and since I also have to do a whole lot of other things this week for class like scan readings into blackboard, set up blackboard for 3 classes, reserve movies and workshop speakers and print up my syllabi, that means my semester basically starts today. Wonderfully, I also didn't finish everything I needed to finish over winter break, so this week I'll also be trying to finish 2 papers that need to be submitted to a publisher and a conference (they are both mostly done but both need 1/2-1 day of work to be really done), and working on an encyclopedia entry I agreed to write that's due in less than 3 weeks and that I haven't started yet...oh plus there's the grant proposal due at the end of the month that I haven't started yet either. And then after that I have two conference presentations in March and one in June to prepare for, a thesis proposal defense + later this semester a thesis defense that I'm the chair of, a research assistant to supervise on another research project, and of course that new class to prep which will be around all semester.

It's going to be a crazy semester, so I probably won't be posting much new content over here.


  1. Glad to hear it went so well. :)

  2. Awesome! And what a way to begin a year.

  3. I am shocked that all went so smoothly! I am really happy for you and so hopeful for all of us that have parents that have problems with our derech.

    Human feelings prevail!

  4. Glad it went well. With luck maybe they'll invite you and the dog and Belial, Beelzebub, whatever that shaygetz's name is to their house some day.

    Seriously, this is wonderful news.

  5. im so happy for u and smart of them not to mention anything about the mezuzah or any other religious thing glad it went well and good luck on all ur prep going on there have a lovely new years

  6. I agree with the standing call appointment--my mom and I have had that ever since I moved out on my own.

  7. YAY! This is a really exciting post. I hope you are able to build a healthy relationship with your parents from this point forward.

  8. Sounds terrific. Glad you had a nice visit. Mom's first visit is ALWAYS anxiety producing, for totally non religious reasons.

    Having done long drives to visit relatives, getting out before can make a big difference. The 45 minutes doesn't matter as much as they can wake up, do "whatever" and get in the car, vs. having breakfast, hanging out a bit more, etc. We used to get in from my in-laws at like 2 AM because we couldn't get out of the house after breakfast and then we hit traffic.

    I'd also think that them spending the night would push a whole lot of religious discomfort on them for visit one, not shocked that they weren't comfortable with it for first visit.

    You know that your house is "normal," they don't. For all they knew the guest room was where you shoved all the religious knick-knacks your relatives sent you.

    Great start to the year.


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