with apologies to Charles Dickens for stealing one of his most famous opening lines, I give you the news of this last week:

1. Monday – Halloween – end of October and one of the few days we all drove together in the van. An uneventful day other than having our last Varsity volleyball practice. We didn’t even get any trick-or-treaters at the house so we HAD to eat the candy purchased … bummer!
2. Tuesday – All Saints Day so we had school-wide Mass. I didn’t have any students in the Library since they needed the Library for visiting 8th graders so I got bits and pieces done. We had our final volleyball game of the season … a game where the Varsity played amazing ball and won all three sets soundly. We felt a little badly for the Highland Hawks because it was their senior night also, but we had posters and flowers for their seniors so that helped salve the wound. The first of November is also the beginning of National Novel Writing Month. I have committed to drafting a 50K word novel, which is tentatively titled “Parallel Lives”.
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The cool thing is that a couple of the 9th grade English Teachers are doing NaNoWriMo with their students (with a minimum goal of 7500 words in the month) and so we can all keep each other honest.
3. Wednesday – a regular day (since we had School Mass yesterday) with a bit of let-down since we DIDN’T have volleyball practice but I managed to fill the void.
locker4. Thursday – a late-start day since we had Parent-Teacher conferences in the morning; this means that I go … and go … and go from 7:30a.m. when the parents start coming in to find teachers until the bell rings at 2:45. It’s a tough day for me and means that I get little real work done. But it’s all good as it is also my annual visit with many of these parents who I only see on this day (some even come in just to say “hi” … which is pretty cool). After school, a few of the other Senior Football Player’s moms, Alexandra and I helped decorate the boys’ lockers. This was a lot of fun and something that made the boys feel quite happy (they were so cute the next day … telling me how surprised they were and how cool they looked).
game-nite5. Friday – another late-start day but also made more hectic by JP shadowing a 9th grader for the day … Catie coming down to bring Thomas lunch in celebration of Senior Night … hosting a Divine Mercy Video in the Library after school for faculty/staff … tailgating out in the parking lot before the game with the other Senior parents … and walking out with Thomas to be recognized before the game started.
The game was a tough-fight … with Thomas getting banged around pretty well and giving as good as he got. Our team is MUCH smaller than the BI team, but finished the game 24-28 (after a touchdown that all agreed was legit had been called back earlier in the game). The boys played their hearts out and really deserve to be proud of their performance. The boys were pretty upset so Catie drove Thomas back home (with JP in tow) while Rick, Maggie and I headed home to warm up (it had been 47 degrees during the game … when we thought it would be more like 58 degrees!). All were home by midnight.

tom-and-steph-come-to-visitThe best part of the whole weekend, though, was welcoming dear SIL and her dh, Steph and Tom, to the Old Dominion. They got into town on Friday and went to the tail-gate and football game. Then on Saturday, Rick and I met them for a coffee up at Wegmans and then, after a quick stop to tour our high school, we headed to Old Town Fredericksburg for a lovely, relaxed lunch at Eileens, and a pleasant Fall-walk (mid-60s and gorgeous!) around the shops.

Back to our house for some game-day food and beverage, watching college football and enjoying being all together. Catie stayed the weekend so it was nice to have so many in the house.

A hectic, wonderful, maudlin end to things … and the start of a couple. What does this next week bring? CLOSING (please, God) on our house on Tuesday and the packing process begins in earnest to head up closer to school! So, I guess when all is said and done, this past week was much more about the “best of times” than the “worst”.

May your week be filled with all the best and God’s many blessings on you and your families …
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