Here I am finally home. I survived, barely. As I said, I wanted to post more details about my trip once home. First the physical issues:
1. Dog hair everywhere--literally you could not sit down without being covered with hair. Our bedside lamp had a halo of fur. Yuck! Pillowcases--covered. Ick! Towels--nice coating.
2. At night, we were basically camping. My SF and mom keep the house at 58° which would be fine if it were warm outside (it was 35) and if we had blankets (we didn't). The kids were freezing even in long pajamas and Mr. GM and I had to sleep right up next to each other to keep warm.
1. My mother always gives a play-by-play of what she's doing. We'll be sitting, watching tv and she'll pop in and say, "I'm going to wash the dishes now." Like we need to know this. She does this about every 15 minutes.
2. Repetition. My mother repeats everything she says 5-6 times as if we've never heard it before. If she hears or thinks of something clever, we'll hear about it over and over for days. We heard about our daughter's card lingo at least 5 times: "She's in there saying 'I've got a trick up my sleeve.'" It was cute the first time.
3. My stepfather is just rude. He always demanded help from Mr. GM. Not once did he say, "Would you mind helping me with something?"
4. My sf eats every meal (if you could call them that) standing up. There is no kitchen table.
5. Smoking. My mother smokes about every 15 minutes--usually before or after the play-by-play. For this, she must go outside. Thus, she never sits down. The woman sat down for a total of maybe an hour in 4 days. Back and forth to smoke.
Obviously, we couldn't really say anything about the dog hair, but perhaps we could have said something about the temperature. We did ask for blankets as if that weren't a big enough hint. I've been in the temperature battle before with my sf and I don't want to go there again. My thinking is, you can afford to spend a little extra and/or be a little uncomfortable yourself (reasons given for not upping the temp) for a couple of days to make your guests comfortable. As for the annoying habits, can't really do anything about those. We see them once a year at most. Just have to put up with them.
Okay, there are worse things. But this was not a pleasant trip. Neither my mother nor my sf asked us how our jobs were or how the kids were (they never sat down long enough). SF tried to arrange a double date with his brother (10 years our senior). We escaped. The family cocktail party (for displaying the grandkids) either didn't last long enough or lasted too long. It was just weird though it was nice to see my cousins and aunts who are very pleasant people. As Mr. GM said, we just had no control over the situation and it did not feel good. We're never really made to feel at home. I'm not expecting to be waited on hand and foot, but I need to know where the food is, what the plans are for the day. This is not the house I grew up in, so I need some information. I need to be treated a little less like family and more like a guest, so that I can resume the family role, if that makes any sense. I just need to feel comfortable and I didn't. Not unusual for a trip to my mom's.
So I am eternally grateful to be home so I can be myself again.