I leave in the wee hours tomorrow morning for Ithaca. I’ll be there Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday (the defense is Friday morning), and I return early on Saturday morning. Mom and Dad seem prepared for the kids, though I know they’re going to have their hands full. Katherine is really pulling some tricks to get out of eating food other than yogurt and bananas (sooooo not cool with us in normal circumstances!), and Nathaniel is keeping us busy with a few hours of crying in the late evenings and in the wee hours of the night. I wish I could take off when all of the adults in the house were well-rested, but I suppose it would be futile to wait for that day.
This is, as far as I can recall, the first time I’ll be going somewhere without kids in tow since we had Katherine. I’ve gone to a number of conferences pregnant (Boston and Montreal with Katherine, Portland with Nathaniel) and with infants and Mom or Sydney in the hotel room (New York City, Philadelphia, both with Katherine), we’ve hauled them along on vacations (Arkansas, Switzerland), and Nathaniel even joined us on our overnight anniversary trip last year. I wish I could take Sydney along to Ithaca, but I’m excited to see friends and do work and be able to focus on the people at hand, rather than the little ones who usually consume my attention.
I’m excited to go back “home,” to see friends, to hear what my advisors have to say, and to take my first vacation without children in a long time. My carry-on is very small, and half of it is taken up by a pump so that I can keep up the milk for Nathaniel, but I’m also tucking in a pair of sneakers in hopes of some hiking!