Sunday, February 21, 2010

Of engagements, racism, and freezing my butt off...

So I'm sitting here waiting for Lu to get home from her future in-laws house. They live about an hour and a half north of us in Iowa. She went up for a the wedding of one of the hippie's best friends. And then stayed the night. I texted her this morning to tell her we were getting a buttload of snow today so they should probably hit the road. Her back here and the Hippie another 3 hours northwest to his home. And yes, did anyone notice that I said "future in-laws"? I'm not going to give a whole update on the loves of Lulu here, but they returned from their overnight trip on Thursday morning to announce that they were "engaged to be engaged". Meaning that she has a ring (a claddaugh of course) and she's wearing it in the "engaged" position but there will be another ring coming and a more formal announcement. Currently they've even set a tentative wedding date for August 27, 2012. They will both have graduated college by then although Lu will still have to take her boards that December to practice in a medical facility. Yes, I'm happy. The Hippie was not my first choice but he has definitely stepped up to the plate. And Lu is ecstactic. That's enough for me. And the fact that they're giving us two years to save up for the wedding. Lol.

But now back to the trip...

The day after we got there we walked down the beach about a mile to the Cherry Grove Fishing Pier. And out onto said Pier. It was freezing!! The sun was bright but the wind chill was in the high 20's. And the wind was so strong it nearly pushed us over. And we had to keep turning around to avoid the sand blowing in our faces. And yet, we still had fun. Although it took 20 minutes in a warm shower for me to feel my fingers again...

It looks warm, doesn't it??!

My new friend, Bob.

The endless ocean

My folks and Lu. Why yes, that is my mother's impression of an Eskimo at the beach!

Sean alone braves the wind at the rail.

The long trek back. Lu kept walking right past the condo. We laughed at her.

My children are always amazed at how different my folks are from myself. Sometimes the differences are subtle, sometimes more pronounced. My parents have always been racist. I once even had to announce that we didn't speak like that at our dinner table and since it was my house I'd like for my wishes to be respected. But when we're on their turf, all bets are off. I understand that they were raised in a different era, ect. But still. Lately my mother has taken it to a whole new level. After one tirade~

Lu: How is it possible to hate an entire race of people?

Sean: Don't be silly Lu, grandma hates way more than just one race.

Me: It's true. She's an equal opportunity hater. I don't think she likes anyone anymore.

And my father was talking about where they might travel to next and was discussing climate in the southwest and then all the people there.~

Me: Well I don't really know where you can go Dad. I mean everywhere you go there's going to be at least one group of people Mom doesn't like. I seriously doubt any white supremacist groups are offering vacation packages, but it sounds like that might be your best bet.

At this point in time, it's easier to diffuse the situation with humor and have open discussions with my children later. And be thankful that my children are appalled by the behavior. Sometimes, I really think I'm doing this parenting thing right...

more ridiculousness and photos tomorrow,


  1. Wow, that's big news! Congrats!

  2. I understand completely with the parents being racist thing. Mine are the same way and it drives me INSANE. I've tried subtly saying things to no avail. She was talking about one of my cousins wedding's and her husbands side of the family and how they acted at the reception and makde the remark: "You know they acted really good for "their kind"." To which I responded: Oh, yeah? And what "kind" would THAT be? HUMANS??? Unfortunately it went right over her head. Or she just chose to ignore it. Sad.... so sad....

  3. Here is my congrats to be expanded to congratulation when Lu pre-engagement becomes a complete engagement.

    The first thing my mother asked me when I told her that I was going to be married was, "Is she white?"

    Sometimes I feel that the past generation can't help it....other times I feel they don't even take the time to think about it.

  4. Wow!

    Felicitations to your dear daughter. : )

  5. Congraats to Lu...and she's giving you two years to prepare for the wedding, good girl. PegBur7 above is my as she says we know about the racist thing...when a woman teels your friend of color not to worry because she's not racist, you are totally embarrassed!!!! My folks have gotten better now that they have found religion...just imagine how they used to be. And yes, I raised my kids like you, and I am happy that they are loving and accepting of all.

  6. You are SOOO doin' the parenting thing right - better than that ... I aspire, dear Spot.

    ...I am failing in a very public and miserable way ... but aspire, none the less.

    I guess if Lu is happy, than we'll all be happy for her. I hope he has truly 'stepped up' ... there's that whole leopard/spot thing cruisin' through my head, but I guess that is the mama bear in me.

  7. Tina~ it is big news. A tad overwhelming in fact. But exciting nonetheless. Thanks!

    Peg~ thank you for stopping by! I'm glad you understand. I'm just not sure what's up with my mom. She doesn't seem to find joy in anything anymore.

    Jerry~ oh yeah. That was a big deal when I was dating. I was not allowed to date anyone of color. The pastier white the better. Ridiculous, no?

    C~ thanks!!

    Suzi~ oh my gosh...don't get my mom started on religions either. It's just not a healthy sitch. Yay for having loving accepting children!

    Dani~ I have had several "heart to hearts" with the boy lately. Lu is a very positive influence on him. And I like the way he's teaching her to open up. And I do not think you are failing at parenting. We all make mistakes and hopefully learn from them. My kids will point out my mistakes and swear they are traumatized for life...and yet, they aren't. Kids are more resilient than they look. (thank heavens!). We do the best we can. Some we win, some we lose, and some you just have to agree to a draw.


  8. Spot - you never fail to entertain me. It has been quite a few days for you, eh? Congrats to Lu and the new almost-fiancee (gasp!). The beach looked beautiful! I about got kicked out of my family-in-law for differing (vastly) in my opinions of race. Had many discussions regarding this issue and am glad to say I'm pretty sure I came out on top if not in intellect than at least in sarcastic wit. The poor people's heads were spinning by the end of it. Job well done. =)

  9. Wow on the almost engaged. Yikies, we are too young for this aren't we???

    As for your parents well my mom decided she now hates fat people. Doesn't matter that she is overweight and me, her daughter is too. She just HATES fat people. Omg. Are parents embarrasing or what?

  10. I am so blessed (and so are your children) to have been raised by parents that don't hate.

    I'm with Lulu on this..How can ya hate a whole race of people?

    Isn't the hippie the one she just recently left?

    Glad you had a good trip.

  11. Mindy~ I am quite sure your sarcastic wit won out and carried the day!

    Angelia~ yes I am too young for this! Lol. And yeah, all you can do with your folks is shake your head. Lol.

    Heather~ Thank you! Yes, hippie was the most recent ex. It was an awesome trip!