The CHERISHED Life of Heather Leigh

Friday, August 31, 2007

Middle School Jitters

So much has happened in the last 2 weeks that I don't even know where to begin. I think the biggest thing is the fact that Jordyn is starting Middle School next week. Did you all hear me? MIDDLE SCHOOL!

Last Tuesday, when I was out of town on business, Kevin took Jordyn to registration night slash picture day. Being the over bearing wife that I am, I left very DETAILED instructions on what forms needed to go to which stations and what things to be sure to look out for while AT registration. I was also nervous that in my absence, Jordyn wouldn't be picture day ready. Who would do her hair and apply some lip gloss and ensure that her outfit was put on the right way? Surely not Kevin! But, she's getting older and can do much of this herself now, (plus we sent her over to Nee Nee's first to have her hair smoothed out and lip gloss applied for good measure). Pictures (oh, and registration) went off with out a hitch.....Isn't she a BEAUTY?


Later that week, on Friday, I took Jordyn and some friends up to the Middle School to practice their locker combinations and to walk through their class schedules. HOLY MOLY! It took each girl at least 5 minutes to master the locker combinations, and it took Jordyn, oh about TWENTY minutes (and a LOT of tears) to get it down pat. I couldn't imagine what her first day would have been like had I not gone up there with her to practice this all important task (twice to the right, once to the left, back to the right).

I thought it would be nice for all of these friends to see where each other's lockers are before the first day of school since 4 elementaries are merging into 1 scary MIDDLE SCHOOL. And the fact that Jordyn has very few friends (that she knows of) in her classes doesn't have me worried in the least (lie lie lie). Will she make new friends as nice as the ones she has now????

........................................................................................................................................

Then, on Sunday, I threw Jordyn a Back to School Beach Bash. And considering she's about to start MIDDLE SCHOOL (have I mentioned that yet?), we invited a handful of BOOOOYYYYZZZZ to the party along with the regular group of girls. I was a bit nervous about the boys, I must admit. I had horrible visions of out of control spin the bottle games and randy renditions of 3 minutes in the closet. But, since Kevin and I chaperoned so closely (it was a BEACH party after all), there really was no need for me to have worried. At one point, the kids insisted they play musical chairs. YES, musical chairs!!

That's me, the lifeguard! ..... Don't grow up too fast!

They had fun having swimming relay races from the beach to the paddle boat (stationed not too far from the beach). The winning team got to take the first turn on the paddle boat with me.
The kids were ALL very well behaved, the boys AND the girls. It was 3 hours of FUN FUN FUN. And after a couple of rainy, tornadoe-y, stormy days in a row, the weather couldn't have been more perfect. But, boy was I happy to see the last kid leave, and *bonus*, they took Jordyn with them when they left! :-) Thanks Tina!

THANKFULLY, I did NOT have to travel this week for work. Which is a good thing because being at home has allowed me to spend, hmmm, about 10 hours or so putting together Jordyn's school supplies. (She's missing the organization chip, or maybe that skill is a bit delayed in her development. I just hope that EVENTUALLY some of my ultra organized ways will rub off on her. She's actually come along way from how disorganized she used to be.) Anyway, I digress. So, I've been helping her organize her binder and printing off curriculum lists and assignments from teacher websites (and you thought elementary school's every day math was bad!?! School hasn't even started yet and she has assignments already!!)

So, I've got the jitters that I won't be able to keep up with Middle School.

Let's just hope Jordyn can!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Monday, August 27, 2007

Aww Shucks

I received a phone call from a friend on Saturday morning who told me how much reading my blog has had an impact in her life, and she just thought I should know. WOW! Really? I had no idea she was even reading the blog (I mean, I know that I sent her the link, but I've sent the link to a TON of people who probably aren't reading it.)

When I asked her what about it was making an impact she just said that it has made her realize that she needs to live more in the moment and have a better outlook on her life, and most importantly it has inspired her to find herself again. You see, after 3 kids as a stay-at-home mom, she feels like she has lost touch with who she is as a person.

I think that many moms are in her shoes, whether they have one kid or seven, and whether they work outside the home or stay at home. When you have kids, it's SO easy to put them and your husband, and your house, and your yard, and your church, etc. first, ALL before yourself. And when you do that, there's nothing left for mom.

I for one, have never had this problem. I often put MYSELF first. Some people might say it's because I'm selfish. Others (like me) might say it's because I recognize that a happy and fulfilled self makes for a happy and fulfilled mommy, resulting in a happy and fulfilled home.

Don't get me wrong. I have my less than happy moments. I have said to my kids (more than once), "I used to be a very nice person....BEFORE I had kids". (childish, I know) But, I can honestly say, I've never lost sight of who I am. For that, I am grateful.

And to my friend, who inspired this self reflection, I say thanks. And in response to MY being an inspiration to HER, all I can say, is Aww Shucks.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Common Courtesy

As I boarded my plane Monday morning, with 15 minutes to spare, I was a little stressed at the whole rush rush rush that I had dealt with that morning (par for the course for my recent Monday mornings). Relieved to have made my flight, but still stressed about getting settled into my seat before take off, I rearranged the overhead bins so that I could cram my carry on into one of them to avoid checking any bags (baggage claim must be avoided at all costs).

Once that was done successfully, (Phew!), I squeezed into my middle seat and dropped my laptop bag (my heavy laptop bag) at my feet to squish it underneath the seat in front of me. One little problem, the woman in the window seat next to me had her foot in the drop zone of my laptop bag, in my section of the feet area. My laptop bag landed right on her foot. Right on her sprained foot.

"Oh my gosh, I am SOOOO sorry."
"My foot is sprained." was her annoyed reply
"From that? Just now? I'm so sorry"

Now, I knew full well that my laptop bag dropping on her toe didn't sprain her foot, but it was the only thought I could verbalize after being completely miffed by her failure to accept or acknowledge my sincere apology. She didn't even crack a smile. Her abrupt manner caused me to conclude that she must not be from here (Michigan). She must be from there (New York).

Sure enough, when we landed at LaGaurdia airport, she jumped on her BlackBerry to announce "Hi, I'm back from vacation, I just landed."

Surely not all New Yorkers are as rude as she was. But, I've run into a LOT who are.

I wonder how long it would take for me to harden against this unreciprocated courtesy? I try to be polite. I smile and say please and thank you., excuse me and after you. If I'm lucky, I'll get a grunt or a nod in reply. Will I soon be grunting instead of saying Good Morning or Hi, how are you? Maybe, if I kill 'em with kindness, there will be a change in NY manners, maybe THEY will start to be more like me, and soften against my example of common courtesy...I'm not holding my breath.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Things that make you go hmmmm

Just some things I saw at LaGuarida airport this afternoon that made me go hmmmm....
  • A very nice looking, well dressed, well groomed man with the pinkest bubble gum pink socks you have ever seen
  • A tattoo clad grandma (Ok, so she only had 2 tattoos that I could see) dressed in a tank top, daisy dukes, flip flops, and a BODY BY JAKE (I'm telling you, she was rock solid!)
  • A young father traveling with a very cute baby - I'd guess 8 months old (so, why do I wonder where the mama is but when I see a mama and baby sans daddy, it doesn't even faze me)
  • LOTS of yamikas (was it a Jewish holiday today or something?)
  • A young girl (twenty ish) with a shirt on...that's it, a shirt, at least that's all it looked like she was wearing

I should add "people watching" as one of my favorite things to do in my profile...

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Just ME and DAD!

This coming Friday is going to be relatively busy for our family...

Jordyn is going to a High School Musical 2 sleepover party at her friend Shelby's house.
Liam is going to a sleepover beach party at his friend Mitchell's house.
And I'm hosting the Glenmoor Gals book club for a discussion of "The Kite Runner" (along with the usual topics of our kids, husbands, neighbors, mothers, in-laws, and various other random topics having nothing to do with the book.)

So, that means that Kevin and Owen will have to find something to do on Friday night and make themselves scarce from the house.

Discussing this over dinner the other night, Liam graciously and sincerely told Owen that he could come to Mitchell's beach party with him if he wanted. Defiantly and with a winning grin, Owen replied, "NO! I'm not going to Mitchell's party with you. I'm going out with Dad. Just ME and DAD." OK, so in his foreign Owenish that few can understand, he might not have said this exactly verbatim, but that was definitely the gist of it.

Being the youngest, Owen rarely gets daddy to himself. And considering he is SUCH a daddy's boy, it will be a real treat to spend time together, just Owen and Dad.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Party Weekend

After being gone Mon-Thur in New Jersey for work last week, it was SOOO good to be back home with my family. The weekend went by all too quickly before I had to head back to Jersey EARLY Monday morning. But let me recap all of the fun that we had...

The weekend started off great when I arrived home from the airport an hour earlier than expected, before the boys went to bed. We spent a relaxing couple of hours on the deck. Kev taught Liam how to open a bottle of beer (something every six year old should know, notice the bottle opener in Liam's hand...)


and I taught Liam how to use the camera so he could take this picture of me & Kev (I think it turned out pretty well...)


On Friday evening Kevin and I went to the Tigers game and they were getting beaten horribly (8-2) by the A's, so we left the game in the 5th inning. The score ended up being 16-10, so it's a good thing we left. Kev went night fishing while I cleaned up the toy room. How do we let the boys turn the toy room into this disaster zone...

And then not make them help us turn it back into this place of serenity and calm...








On Saturday morning, I met some girlfriends for brunch, and again Liam tried out his photography skills taking a picture of me, Laura, and Cindy (who I used to work with at Delphi). This one was a little blurry, but still pretty darn good for a 6 year old.


In the afternoon, the Sprys (and my mom) came over to celebrate Liam's birthday since they weren't going to be around for his birthday party on Sunday. They brought their kayaks and we enjoyed a beautiful day in the lake. Liam caught an enormous perch. We grilled brats and later roasted marshmallows and made s'mores. It was such a fun day! Some of my favorite photos of the day:
Bailey & Jordyn in the kayaks


Kissing Cousins (these 2 can't get any cuter!)

Grandma & Liam


Owen holding up Liam's big perch


Aaron, Liam, & Owen around the campfire


Then, on Sunday, we had Liam's birthday party. What another gorgeous day. We were blessed with great weather, great company, and great times all weekend long.
Pics from the birthday party...

Liam and some buddies in the lake


Liam and some buddies opening presents


Mom, Liam, and Dad


Looking forward to another 3 days at home (and enjoying the lake) when I return again from Jersey this Thursday night. Too bad most of this weekend will be spent landscaping instead of relaxing!! I'll take pictures of that, too, and post next week.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

People I Love...

...Many of whom I am missing tremendously right now....

Kevin - for continuing to put up with me after all of these years
Jordyn - for your increasing maturity and responsibility
Liam - for your knock-knock jokes and snuggling up
Owen - for your quiet mischief and wicked (infectious) giggle
Mom - for always being there when I truly need you, even when you'd rather be golfing
Dad - for fixing all the thousands of things around my house that Kevin can't (or won't, or doesn't have time to) , even when you'd rather be golfing
Carol - for sending a card for every occasion, never late, lighting up my kids' day when the mail arrives
Don - for your bad jokes and CONSTANT joking around
Shawn - for lovingly nurturing your brood (and sometimes mine...and sometimes for a week at a time!)
Scott - for continuing to put up with Shawn
Bailey - for your inner (and outer) ballerina
Jake - for your love of the Tigers
Aaron - for your unassuming demeanor
Bella - for all of the diva-ness that is you
Jeremy - for your deck making skills and your will to create a better life for your family
The Petoskey's - for everything...the ear to chew on, the confidence to share, the shoulder to cry on, the company to keep, the thoughtfulness, the help with out asking
Aimee - for your strength and example
Paul - for serving our country and protecting our FREEDOM
Nee Nee - for loving my kids as if they were your own
Mr. Jeff - for barking at my kids as if they were your own
Maria - for your desire to be the best that you can be, and inspiring others to do the same
Pat - for putting up with Maria
Allison - for that ATTITUDE
Rachel - for your sweet baby-ness
Lori - for loving me just the way I am
Erika - for boosting my self esteem
The Glenmoor Gals - for rallying around each other, in good times, and in bad...oh yeah, and for the occasional gossip session
The Scrapbooking Friends Club - for inspiring me to start scrapping again

The list could go on and on and on, but sadly, I am too tired to go on and on and on. It's off to sleep (hopefully) for me...

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

One in a million...continued

Then, I got into my rental car, and, of course, the radio is tuned to some Spanish music station - I thought this was unique to rental cars in Phoenix, being so close to the border and all, but apparently the rental car cleaning crews in Newark are Mexican, too. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a good Latin salsa like the rest of you, but not at that particular moment. So, not being from Jersey and not knowing what radio stations to tune to, I hit the radio station preset button number one…and I kid you not, it was the familiar guitar riff that opens Bon Jovi's song, "Wanted Dead or Alive"!!!

A smile slowly crept onto my face at this warm (and fitting) musical welcome to the Garden State. That song was followed up with Bon Jovi's "You Give Love A Bad Name", followed by "Livin' on a Prayer", followed by "Have a Nice Day". UHHHH, do they have an entire radio station devoted to Bon Jovi here in their home state??? That's what I was starting to think, as I was savoring every moment of it. But, no, the DJ soon informed me that it was just a workday lunchtime set. The next set, (are you ready for this?), Bruce Springsteen. Yep, the Boss (also from NJ). Not a big fan of the Boss, so I couldn't tell you what songs they were playing, although I can tell you that they did NOT play "Born in the USA". But it was him alright, there's no mistaking that voice.

So, what are the chances of that happening again?

One in a million…

One in a million

(Watch this as you read this blog entry)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUAtGy5TBI0

So, I'm flying into New Jersey on Monday, and as we're landing, with the Jersey boros coming into view below us and a dirty, summer haze blanketing the city, my head starts ringing with the Sopranos theme song. I expected to see Tony, Sil, and Paulie at any moment. Maybe Carmella, Meadow, or Dr. Melfi. But there were no sightings, only the theme song in my head…

Woke up this morning
Got yourself a gun,
Mama always said you'd be
The Chosen One.

She said: You're one in a million
You've got to burn to shine,
But you were born under a bad sign,
With a blue moon in your eyes.

Woke up this morning,
Got yourself a gun
Woke up this morning
Got yourself a gun
Got yourself a gun

Orange you glad....

I was driving along on Saturday afternoon with the boys in the car. They were cracking each other up in the back seat with their own made up knock-knock jokes that made totally no sense, when Liam proudly recalled a knock-knock joke that Kevin had told at the dinner table earlier that week.

"Mom, mom, mom!"
"Yes, Liam?" (fully knowing that another knock-knock joke was on its way)
"Knock-Knock."
"Who's there?"
"Banana."
"Banana who?"
"Knock-Knock."
"Who's there?"
"Banana."
"Banana who?"
"Knock-Knock."
"Who's there?"
"Orange."
"Orange who?"
"It's a good thing I didn't say banana!!!" (Liam and Owen laughing hysterically, and me trying not to COMPLETELY crack up at his misguided punchline)
"It sure is a good thing you didn't say banana, honey. It SURE is."

Orange you glad when your kids just totally delight in and relish the silliness of life?

My 2 adorable boys, being goofy before the Tigers' game yesterday:

Monday, August 6, 2007

LOST

Kevin was out of town this past weekend at his annual Fat Bastard Wiffle Ball tournament in Grand Rapids (yes, I said Wiffle Ball; yes, the name of the tournament is called Fat Bastard; and no, the wine maker with the same name does not sponsor the tournament). This left me with an extra ticket to the Tigers game Friday night. So, I took my girlfriend Amy with me, and (as usual) we got into the same amount of good time trouble as we usually do when the two of us venture out together (but that's an entirely different post altogether).

As much fun as we had, I am a little sad about losing my hat. My trusty Detroit D Tigers baseball hat that has been with me at the past 4 or 5 opening days, it was with me at last year's ALCS, ALDS, and the World Series. My orange is the new black favorite favorite favorite fitted hat. So, how did I lose something so valuable to me? First of all, it was too hot to wear the hat so it never made its way onto my head. During the 2nd inning or so, we went to the bathroom. First, I hung it on the hook on the back of the bathroom stall door and said to myself "Don't forget your hat." Then, I put it on top of the paper towel dispenser so that I could was my hands and I said to myself "Don't forget your hat."

Back at our seats, enjoying the game, at least 45 minutes goes by when it dawns on me…MY HAT!! I don't have my hat!! "Amy, come on, let's go to the bathroom to see if it's still there! Hurry! Hurry!" On the way to the bathroom we run into this cute girl whose hair cut Amy had admired previously and had wanted to (but failed to) get a picture of so she could show her hairdresser. Not wanting to be delayed a moment longer, I leave Amy to the photo op with the cute hair cut girl and proceed to the bathroom.

Not there. Not there on top of the paper towel dispenser (where I left it!). Not there on the hook on the back of stall number 24's door (where I knew it wouldn't be, because I had moved it to the top of the paper towel dispenser where it SHOULD be, but it's not!). So, I ask the group of janitorial staff at the back of the restroom, "Has anyone turned in a hat?" We banter back and forth about the description and where I left it, but sadly, no, they haven't seen it. They are nice enough, however, to inform me that I could check with Guest Services behind section 130.
Section 130, Section 130, gotta get to section 130. So, I hoof it over to section 130, locate Guest Services, and inquire about a turned in hat. No luck, but check back later, someone might still turn it in. Yeah, right.

Dejected, I head back to the seats where I reunite with Amy. I tell her the bad news. I call Kevin and give him the bad news. I'm really sad that I've lost my hat. Unexpectedly sad about this loss.

A couple of innings go by, and a new surge of optimism wells up, and I decide it's time to check back at Guest Services for my hat (after re-checking the bathroom and re-asking the janitorial staff about it to no avail). When Amy and I get to Guest Services and ask (again) about my hat, we notice a little girl, maybe 4 or 5 years old, being interviewed by a Guest Services employee. "What does he look like? What was he wearing?" OH MY GOSH! That poor little girl is lost!

It makes the loss of my hat seem extremely insignificant. I haven't lost a child. I haven't lost my car or my life to the bottom of the Mississippi River. It's just a hat.

As we were leaving Guest Services, a frantic dad burst through the door. The little girl hugs him like she probably never has before. Amy and I can't stop watching this reunion. How touching. I can only imagine the panic that dad must have been going through when he realized his little girl was no longer by his side and the enormous amount relief he must be feeling now as she clings to his neck.

Although I'm still sad that I lost my hat, I'm thankful for all the many, many other (slightly more important) things that I know exactly where they are.

Friday, August 3, 2007

I'd rather poke my eyes out

EVERY year, we get the calendar for the local summer concerts in the park. And EVERY year, I say (to myself), this is the year that the family and I are going to attend one of these, or two or three. SOMETIMES, I even load the concert dates into my PDA with the best intentions of attending one, or two or three. They sound like SO much fun! It's such a home-towny, small-towny thing to do. And, heck, they're FREE!

So, tonight, as we were driving home from dinner at B-dubs (as we affectionately refer to Buffalo Wild Wings in our house ~ even though I, myself, have little affection for their menu), we passed the park downtown and LO and BEHOLD, they were setting up for a concert in the park! Only 14 minutes until concert time. Let's seize the opportunity! Meijer can wait until after the concert, right? Who cares if I don't know what type of music is on the docket tonight?

"Oh, look, honey, it's concert night! Let's stop!" I say enthusiastically. To which Kevin flatly and promptly replies, "I'd rather poke my eyes out." And he seriously would.

So, how did we end up together? (Besides the fact that we were buzzed through out the majority of our courtship...) The rose-colored stained glass wearing, social butterfly girl and the stick in the mud, mildly reclusive boy? Aaaahhhhh well, if nothing else, he sure knows how to make me laugh. And, as I reflect on that quick interchange, I'm laughing still.

No, we didn't go to the concert. I should just resign to the fact that we'll probably never attend one of these Forced Family Fun summer concerts in the park. FFF events are what my husband, for years, has referred to things that he doesn't enjoy doing, but that I "make" him do for the sake of the family. Like Santa Breakfasts and Funky Fall Fests at the elementary school or Holiday Parades. He'd truly rather poke his eyes out. But when it's something that I really think we should do together as a family, FFF or not, he will usually oblige.

And, thankfully, he still has both of his gorgeous blue eyes in tact.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Business Trip...

...that wasn't meant to be.

So, yesterday I woke up at 4:30 am (OK, I got out of bed at 4:50 am) to get ready for a flight to AZ (business not pleasure) leaving out of Metro at 7:58 am. I left later than usual for the airport at 5:55 am instead of 5:40 am (JEEZ what a difference 15 minutes makes in the morning commute!). So, I white knuckle it all the way to the airport, all solid one hour and 10 minutes of the drive, of course behind people who are going the speed limit in the left lane (*newsflash*, the left lane is for speeders, like me, who are trying to make it to the airport on time, so if you're only going to drive 70 mph, move over to the middle, or better yet, the far right lane and get outta my way-no, I don't have road rage tendencies at all, why do you ask?)

So, I get there on time (55 minutes to spare-plenty of time when you already have your boarding pass in hand that you printed at home the night before) and drive to my usual parking lot. As the shuttle bus driver takes my bags and loads them on to the van, I fish in my purse for my wallet to get him a tip. My wallet. My wallet. WHERE IS MY WALLET?

Wait a minute, sir, I can't find my wallet!
Ma'am, is it under your seat?
No, no, no, I checked. I don't have it. (I don't have my freaking wallet!! ) I can't believe I don't have my wallet. How can I get on an airplane with out my ID?!? (How can I tip this shuttle bus driver with out my wallet?) How do I pay to get OUT of the parking lot with out my wallet???!!!
Oh, you haven't been here long enough, they won't charge you (as he loads my bags back into my vehicle).

How much more of a doofus can I be? I can't believe I have to call my colleague and explain to him this gross level of travel ineptitude.

Hello, George? I won't be meeting you at 9 am in Phoenix today like I thought.
Oh no, Why?
I don't have my wallet and will have to take a later flight. (more babbling and explanation given but not typed here.)
Oh my goodness…do you happen to have your passport with you?
NO! And I told myself just last week that I needed to put it in my briefcase, but I obviously didn't. Can you pick me up at the airport later?
No problem, just let me know when.
I don't have any money. Sorry about that.
No need to be sorry, these things happen.
No, I was saying sorry to the parking lot lady, not you, although I am sorry that I won't be there today. Jeez, I hope I can find my wallet at home!!

OK, no big deal, I can still make it to AZ for the BIG meetings which are tomorrow and the next day. I'll just call the travel agent to get my flight switched. So, the travel agent switches me to the 7:28 pm flight arriving in to Phoenix at 8:41 pm. Great! Although she can't issue me a boarding pass because I had already printed one last night for this morning's flight that I wasn't able to take. Hmmmm. So, only the USAir ticket lady at the counter at Metro can issue me a boarding pass and I have to arrive there in person to get it. OK, then, just send me my confirmation. I don't want to get to Metro and not have a seat. I'm assured that I definitely have a confirmed seat, but the boarding pass will need to be printed at the airport. Great. I'll just drive the hour and a HALF back home to get some work done. Cool, I find my wallet at home here in my dressing table drawer along with my brushes and combs and hairspray (what the heck is it doing in there?!!)

So, at 4:00 pm I depart again for Metro airport (for the second time in one day). Another hour and a HALF drive, but, I figured as much and allowed myself the extra time. The whole way there I check, and double check, and triple check for my wallet. Check. Check. Check. Cell phone? Yep, still there. Briefcase with laptop? Check. And check again. I'm totally nervous that I've forgotten something else important. But, no, I haven't forgotten anything and arrive at Metro with TWO hours to spare.

The US Air ticket line is unusually short, which pleases me, because that means I'm that much closer to eating dinner at some restaurant in the terminal (I'm starving, that salad for lunch isn't holding me over very well). Even though the line is short, it moves slowly. Only a couple of agents are working the counter. Someone is trying to check a bike in a carrying case that weighs too much, most of the self serve kiosks are out of order, but I need to speak with someone anyway but the other 4 people in front of me might not have to speak with someone and could have used those kiosks if they would have been working. So, I wait. YAY! It's my turn.

Good evening, (I politely greet the US Air ticket agent. Kill 'em with kindness. And I explain my story.)
Let me tell you honey, all your travel agent did was unassign your seat from this morning.
But I have the print out right here from the travel agent that says I'm confirmed on this flight.
I'm sorry, but you are not confirmed on this flight and there are already 12 people on standby. The plane holds 121 people and we have sold 133 seats. To be realistic, you could go standby, but you are not getting to Phoenix tonight.
But I specifically asked the travel agent, several times, several different ways if I had a seat and she said yes, yes, yes. Now what do I do?
Well, there is a 9:45 pm flight through Vegas that arrives at 1 am
(OK, that's 4 am EST, and I've already been up since 4:30 am this morning and with my luck I'll get stuck in Vegas, which would be kind of fun, but still not make it to Phoenix)
OR I could put you on the first flight out tomorrow at 7:58 am. (in response to my blank stare)
(OK, that's the flight I was SUPPOSED to be on today and it doesn't get me to Phoenix in time for the meeting anyway ... BIG SIGH) Well, let me call my colleague and I'll let you know.
Alright, and when you do, you don't have to wait in line, just come right back up to the counter.
(The kindness thing works, even if it doesn't get me on the flight) OK, Thanks.

I can't believe I have to call George again...

Hello, George? I don't have a seat on tonight's flight, so don't bother picking me up at the airport at 8:41 pm because I won't be there.
Oh my goodness…what happened?
Well, I'm here at the airport and even though the travel agent ASSURED me I have a seat, the US Air lady says that I don't and I'm pretty sure she trumps the travel agent. (more babbling and explanation given but not typed here)
Hey, don't sweat it. These things happen.
I know, but I WANTED to be there for these meetings.
I mean, it would be nice for you to be here, but it obviously wasn't meant to be, and it isn't really NECESSARY. It's really not a problem, Jeff and I can handle it.
Are you sure? Well, OK, but call me if you need ANYTHING.

So, now I'm on my way back home from Metro (for the second time in one day), and I call the travel agent to ask her to cancel everything, air, hotel. And I nicely express the fact that I'm a little put off about them telling me I was confirmed on a seat when I wasn't. She comes back with, BUT YOU ARE CONFIRMED ON THIS FLIGHT, SEAT 19 E.

AAAARRRRRGGGGGGHHHHHHH !!!!

Well, I'm on my way home now, and I'm not turning back around and going back to the airport AGAIN, so just cancel everything.

And there you have it. The business trip that wasn't meant to be….