Sunday, July 26, 2009
Jackson's Circle of Friends Grows
As Jackson makes it through his twelfth weekend, he was lucky enough to spend some time with some of our favorite people. We were reminded how lucky we are to have these people in our lives, and how much we miss the old days when there were less miles between us.
First off, Rebecca drove down from Austin this Saturday. Rebecca has been friends with Rob since he was three years old or so, and she hasn't tired of his shenanigans yet. This was her first time to meet Jackson, and she got to meet him at his best. Jackson is now up for smiles and talking with guests, and he was very taken with Rebecca, who is the same silly, witty, sweet, sentimental, together, and wise friend she has always been. She got lots of face time with the little man, and he smiled and cooed for his new friend.
Ruffles and Schuley managed to get quite a lot of love from Rebecca as well, which may make her question if goofy dogs are better than the destructive cats she has, who make her protect her newly reupholstered chairs with foil. (Note the cat attacking regardlessly.)
Rebecca wanted to cook us a dinner being as she is quite the kind foodie, but we insisted we eat out so we could all catch up with her without anyone being distracted. Katy has a few restaurants we enjoy, but we figured Red Oak Grill would be our best bet of good food in a relaxed environment. It was the first time I've worried going in that a friend might not enjoy the meal, but Rebecca loved the gyros and tabouleh, and Eric the owner helped his case by giving us free frozen sangrias. (He must be the nicest guy in Katy.) It was nice to get the stamp of approval for one of our favorite restaurants from a friend that makes herself meals like this.
Then, this morning, we introduced her to another quaint restaurant here in Katy. Yeah.
But between those meals, we got the chance to sit around the table, drink some wine, and catch up with each other, and it was one of those nice reminders how blessed we are to have these old friends in our lives.
We look forward to more of these nights in the future, as do the dogs, who love both the attention and getting to lie around and listen to us talk.
After Rebecca left and the aforementioned naps, we headed into town to say goodbye to Jenny, who is heading up to NYC with boyfriend Brian for at least the next four years. Jenny is another old friend of Rob's, and this next chapter of her life seems to be what is best for her, but their move is Houston's loss. Jenny's probably the most creative person I know, and her sense of humor and insight have helped me become the person I am today. She just taught for two years at the middle school down the street from our school, so at least we will get to see all the lives she touched running through our school's halls to remind us of her impact. While Brian is going to grad school at NYU (which is intimidating, because he's already one of the smartest people I've ever met), Jenny will be continuing with her art of puppetry and hopefully also continuing to educate kids about the power of the puppets. Here they are, allowing us to distract them from packing.
Anyhoo, Jackson again put on a great show for them, happily making faces and fists, gazing from one face to another. Jenny's sister Jessie and her fiancee Charlie came by as well, and it was another nice chance to get to catch up on old times and see where life has brought all of us. (Jessie and Charlie are getting married in a few months, with me as the minister, by the way, so I'll save my nice things to say about them for then.)
We gave Jenny and Brian a traveling Smurf to help with the journey, which was actually the first time Jackson had seen a Smurf, believe it or not. Had to document that.
It will be tough not having Jenny and Brian around to see much of Jackson during his first few years, but we are glad they got to see him one last time now that his personality is starting to come out. We look forward to updates on their adventures to tell him at storytime.
Then, we rushed home to see Noelle's college buddy, Jen Bergman, who traveled to Houston with her friend Damon to watch the Astros play. Jen is quite the jet-setter, and her Twitter updates show how she is constantly venturing from one city to another, but we get the idea that Jackson wooed her enough that she'll be stopping by Katy more often. (Thanks for the onesies and blanket, by the way!)
You'd think all of these visitors and visits would tire us out, but no - we're both happily awake. Noelle is working away on her papers and Rob is writing his first post here in like a month. The dogs are helping.
Maybe it's the warm feeling one gets from being around old friends.
Maybe it's the contentment from knowing that Jackson will always have these people in his life, no matter where they live.
Or maybe it's the exhilaration from having it verified that Chuy's is opening a restaurant on the west side of Houston! That means closer jalapeno ranch dip and veggie enchiladas and Chuychangas! It also means closer ceiling decorations to lull the boy into a trance.
With a closer Chuy's, we hope to have even more old friends come by soon. I'm sure it has made my sister already start thinking about her next trip to Texas.
And happy birthday to David Laurie, another of Jackson's little buddies! Sorry we couldn't bring the boy out into the heat for your party, but I'm sure we'll have some air-conditioned good times soon.