In two days I'll drive up to Georgia for a short weekend visit with Mom. I always get nervous beforehand about the 7+ hour drive and about the possibility of something going wrong, but it's always fine and I'm sure it'll be fine this time too.
This time it'll be just me and Mom, no other relatives going out to lunch with us, so that'll be better. Mom has such trouble hearing that when we go to a restaurant everyone ends up talking around her and mostly ignoring her, which I hate. If it's just the two of us, even if we don't speak a lot, it'll at least be to each other. I'm hoping to take her out to lunch at Red Lobster on Saturday, and then maybe out to breakfast at IHOP on Monday before I leave to drive back.
She's not up to shopping anymore, so while she's taking her afternoon nap I plan to go to a nearby mall and see if I can't find her some new clothes. If I can do that on Saturday, then Sunday I could return anything that didn't fit.
Unfortunately this retirement home doesn't have a dedicated Guest room like the place where she used to live. It was a small studio apartment, but it was comfortable with a TV and a mini refrigerator and fresh linens. It cost $50 but included meals, and it was invaluable to be able to just walk down the hall in my pajamas and slippers to hang out with Mom at night. This place in the past has let me stay in empty "show" apartments, which was hit or miss with things like fresh linens or TVs, but they let me stay for free. Now they have a new corporate policy to charge $125 a night, and that doesn't even include a guaranteed TV or linens. Good grief. Clearly they don't want people to stay. So I'll be a mile away at a small hotel that I got at an employee discount rate of $39. I won't be down the hall from Mom, but I'll at least have wifi. And I am going to not care about driving a mile in my pj's and slippers.