A Wonderful Whirlwind Weekend

After picking up #2 of 5 from C.I.T. training earlier week, I was staring down the barrel of what looked like one of our hectic, crazy, over-scheduled (i.e. - "typical") weekends.  It quickly turned out to be a WONDERFUL (crazy, hectic, over-scheduled) weekend!

Here is the whirlwind tour!

About a week ago, Best Bud Ed called me and gave me a heads up that he and his whole family was going to be in town celebrating his nephew's graduation, and asked about my availability for getting together.  I checked my Palm Pilot - and noticed a couple of significant entries that would prohibit a lot of time together.  "Work", "Father's Day", and "Boy Scout Hot Dog Booth". 


The Boy Scout Hot Dog Booth was being held at a local Cub Foods.  There are a total of six shifts per day, for three days.  Each family is asked to sign up for one shift (if they choose) to help of-set the costs of camping at Tomahawk Scout Reservation.  Then, after the list goes around once, it's sent again, and again, and again - until all the slots are filled up.  The profits from the Booth are split among the shifts - and used to help pay for camp.  Having two scouts (and a father who likes to go for part of the week) can add up - so the FOF's name was on that list many times!

Last year - we took four shifts.  This year?  Six shifts.  Yup, SIX SHIFTS!

Thursday - One shift with #3 of 5.

Friday - One shift with #2 of 5.

Saturday - Two (back to back) shifts with #3 of 5

Sunday - Two (back to back) shifts with #2 of 5.


Despite my not having a lot of free time, we welcomed Best Bud Ed and family to stay with us at our house.  If nothing else, we could have a couple of back yard campfires - and do some catching up...

As Thursday afternoon approached, I was sitting at work talking to (frequent comment-er) "Co-worker".  As I was lamenting the business of my weekend with him, he reminded me that I had scheduled vacation days on Saturday and Sunday.  I told him he was wrong.  I actually argued with him.  I took out my Palm Pilot - and pulled up my schedule.  "Co-Worker" quickly logged in to our computerized schedule here at work (the "official" schedule) and showed me that I did indeed have two vacation days requested (and approved).


I contacted the Mother of Five - discussed the changes, and followed up with Best Bud Ed.  Plans were adjusted to allow them to arrive a day earlier, providing us a day for some GeoCaching!

06-19-10_2337_600x480 Best Bud Ed and his family arrived on Friday night, and we started off with a back yard rec fire (and some beer, and some cigars!).  After staying out "way too late" on Friday night, Saturday morning rolled around "way to quickly".  The Mother of Five made breakfast for everyone before having to leave to work the hot dog stand with #3 of 5, and then to work.  After breakfast, and getting the older kids settled into some activities, Best Bud Ed and I left the kids in the very capable hands of his wife, and we headed out to Belle Plaine to nab a few morning caches.  (Link Video of my #3 of 5 and Ed’s Youngest)

Best Bud Ed had to "demonstrate" his new cellular telephone.  He is set up with one of those "Fancy Pants" Motorola Droid phones with all the bells and whistles!  His phone has a GeoCachinig Application that offers paperless caching, a live GeoCaching map, and instant logging!  I think that dang phone even has it's own toilet paper dispenser! (Well, ok - it has ALMOST all the bells and whistles you could ask for...  I made up that thing about having a toilet paper dispenser...  I think.)

After a GREAT morning of caching - we headed home to relieve his wife of her child-watching duties - get lunch ready - and even squeezed in a game of Cribbage (inaugurating my new EJHWoodworking Cribbage Board - with a "last minute victory" after trailing behind the entire game!) before I had to head out to the Hot Dog Stand and pick up #3 of 5.

Once I returned, we loaded up both families - nabbed some Mickey-Dee's - and headed to the park.  After a quick "dinner", the youngest kids ran to the playground, #2 of 5 took off with his skateboard to do some "sk8ter" stuff, while Best Bud Ed, #3 of 5, and I set off on another GeoCaching run.

We had a GREAT time caching!  It was wonderful to casually walk some trails with Ed while we "shot the breeze" and got caught up.  It has also been a while since I had one of the kids with me while caching, and #3 of 5's presence proved to be a TREMENDOUS asset to us on a couple of the caches!  At least one cache would not have been found if it had not been for #3 of 5!

HERE is a list of our caches for the day.

06-19-10_2034_600x480After we tired the kids out, it was back to our house for another late night of backyard fire, beer, wine coolers, schnapps, and cigars.

Sunday morning found us at the early (8am) Mass so that #2 of 5 and I could fulfill our final (fifth and sixth) hot dog stand shifts of the weekend.  With the Mother of Five at work again today, dinner was up to me.  I barbequed up some chicken, and we got out the potato salad that the Mother of Five had made for us previously.

With dinner done, we were going to have one more fire pit (or at least start one) before Best Bud Ed and his family had to head out for home.  As Ed and I prepped the fire area - I asked him if it would be easier for him to spend the night - and just head out first thing in the morning.  He checked with his wife - and we all agreed - one more night would be easier (and give us one more full night at the campfire!).   (Link – Video of last campfire)

As the evening progressed, we added a few more bottles to the table, finished off our second package of cigars, and somehow, the cap for the schnapps bottle ended up in the fire pit.

The background behind that is a long story, and involves a wintertime birthday party at Ed's cabin, a large bottle of Blackberry Brandy, a night of vomiting over the deck railing, and a day of "someone" wishing that they had died the night before...

Let's suffice it to say that when the cap goes in the fire - there is no way to close off the bottle anymore.  Not having a way to close the bottle requires the consumers of the bottle's contents to have to empty the bottle.  Thankfully, this bottle was mostly empty - and the vanilla schnapps that was left inside went down easily - without any difficulty, and without any significant "consequences" in the morning.

Speaking of morning... It was 5am the next morning when my alarm went off... Signaling the end of my "Whirlwind" weekend, and the beginning of a LONG workweek (not so long as in the number of days - but extraordinarily long in the number of hours worked each day).

Overall, despite the almost constant activity of the weekend, having Best Bud Ed and his family out to visit - made the very busy weekend a wonderful weekend full of fun and friends!

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