I’m Going To Seattle…

…not dying.

That is what I have to keep reminding myself.

G and I leave for Seattle tomorrow morning, and I’m feeling a feeling very unfamiliar to me.  That feeling is ANXIETY.

I’ve got to admit, I’m not a fan.

I’m usually not one to worry about anything.  I think it’s a pointless, worthless waste of time.  But factor Kate into the mix–specifically, me being away from Kate–and I’m a bundle of nerves.  Make it G and I both being away from Kate at the same time and I need tranquilizers.  I don’t know why!  We’re leaving her in the hands of Grandma Pam, the most caring and competent caregiver we could ever hope to have for our child.  There is absolutely NOTHING to worry about…and yet, I can’t turn it off.

I’m a control freak.  And when I’m anxious I turn into an even bigger control freak.

If you’ve ever tried to work with me, plan an event with me, or marry me, you might think it’s impossible that my need to control everything around me could ever be worse.

Oh I assure you, it can.

For starters, I make lists. 

I’m a list-maker anyway, but toss a little anxiety into my control tornado and I take list making to a whole ‘nother level.  I make lists about the lists I need to make!  Today (Tuesday; less than 48 hours before we die go to Seattle) I made a list of all the things I absolutely still need to accomplish before we go, prioritized by importance to Kate, and then broken down by time of day (Tuesday afternoon, Tuesday night, Wednesday morning…).

And then I gave each task a time limit.


Here is just a sampling of my list of things that I absolutely must do before we leave for Seattle:

  1. Make a batch of veggie muffins for Kate
  2. Make a double batch of blueberry protein pancakes for Kate
  3. Stock the house with fruit for Kate
  4. Buy another gallon of milk for Kate
  5. Make Kate’s favorite popcorn
  6. Write Kate’s 25 Month post
  7. Write Kate’s 26 month post
  8. Organize Kate’s inside activities
  9. Do a write up of everything Kate needs, likes, feels, does, etc.
  10. Make Oreo truffles for Pam and my friend
  11. Mail a care package to my friend
  12. Make Spicy Black Bean Salad for Pam
  13. Wash the bedding in the guest room for Pam
  14. Clean the bathrooms
  15. Put my clothes away
  16. Pack
  17. Stock my wine rack
  18. Stop at the bakery
  19. Find the perfect pair of walking shoes
  20. Return all the un-cute walking shoes I just ordered from Zappos
  21. …and all those jeans I just ordered from Piperlime.
  22. Paint my nails.
  23. Charge all of the batteries ever made for anything.
  24. Buy gallon-sized Ziploc bags
  25. Wash my car
  26. Test drive a Toyota
  27. Draft an “if we die” email and schedule it to send on Monday in case we don’t return
  28. Get a new iPhone
  29. Make a video of everything I want to teach Kate, like Michael Keaton did in that one movie
  30. Eat all of the leftovers in the fridge

So far I’ve completed numbers 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 12, 17, and 24.

Yes, buying gallon-sized Ziploc bags got prioritized over putting my clothes away and getting a new iPhone.  WE WERE OUT OF THOSE ZIPLOC BAGS IN THE HOUSE!  What if, when Pam is here taking care of Kate during the 4 days that we’re gone, she needs a gallon-sized Ziploc bag for some LIFE THREATENING EMERGENCY?!!

Guess what.

They’ll be there.

In the drawer right next to the gallon-sized Ziploc freezer bags, and the quart-sized freezer bags, and the sandwich-sized bags, and the snack-sized bags.


There will be no life-threatening Ziploc bag emergency while we’re gone.  Not on my watch.

Numbers 6 and 7 absolutely must happen because what if I die (I’m going to Seattle–not dying!) and I wasn’t caught up on writing Kate’s monthly posts?  She’d be all, “What the hell?!  My monthly posts stop at 24 months, but I was 27 months old when she died!  Clearly she didn’t love me.”  Which we all know is NOT TRUE because I love Kate more than anything I’ve ever loved, liked or admired–COMBINED!–but this is where my Crazy Anxiety Brain takes me.  And it also explains #29.  And the sculpture of her face that I’m currently whittling out of a pine tree in the back yard, which did not make the narrowed down list of 30 things above, but is very much a part of my unabridged list of 1,586 things I WILL accomplish before 8:00am tomorrow morning when we leave town.

Number 9: six pages.

That’s all I’m saying.
While I may be a list-making, control-crazed, overbearing Mom in need of psychotropic medications now, I have to admit, somewhere in there, Normal Dusty is really looking forward to this trip.  Here’s my list (!) of things I’m most excited about:

  1. Seeing G’s sister Lesley and her boyfriend Ben–the reason we’re going to Seattle!  
  2. Spending quality time with G, just the two of us.
  3. Not having a schedule we need to stick to!
  4. Getting drunk at lunch.
  5. Visiting the very first Starbucks ever created!
  6. Did I mention no schedule?
  7. Sleeping in.
  8. Going to Pike Place Market.
  9.  Starbucks again!
  10. Meeting one of my favorite blog commenters, jbhat!

“jbhat” has been commenting on my blog for years and I knew instantly that she and I were meant to be friends.  She is so funny and smart and clever, and when I found out she lived in Seattle, I knew we had to meet up on this trip.  We’re getting together for coffee on Friday morning, and I’m practically dying with excitement to meet her!

And then I remind myself:

I’m going to Seattle–NOT DYING!

Want to know how I handle being away from Kate, meeting total strangers, and getting drunk at lunch?  Like All Things G&D on Facebook to follow along with my vacation updates! 

Pin It


  1. 1

    Super jealous of getting drunk at lunch! 😉 Have a fun, safe trip!

  2. 2

    :) First of all more power to you if you accomplish your whole list before you leave. Pretty sure that makes you some sort of super hero.

    Second, I loved this post. You make me smile.

  3. 3
    Anonymous says:

    oh my gosh this list is insane!! Was stocking the wine rack important for Kate or Grandma?! Hahha! I hope you have a good trip and get to sleep in and relax! CC in VA

  4. 4

    Oh D, we have SO much more in common than I ever thought! I am exactly the same way, the worry, the lists, the thoughts that you won’t return! Gets so much worse when there are kids involved. But you will be fine and Kate will be fine and have a great time with her Grandma. My sister lived in Seattle for 4 years and I never got the chance to go and visit while she was there, so enjoy it’s a great place! Don’t forget to visit the Space Needle!

  5. 5
    Anonymous says:

    I could have written this same post a week ago. Although my list included “contact the President/National Security/FEMA/Secret Service (well, maybe not those guys) and let them know flight #123 is in extreme danger due to INSERT IRRATIONAL THOUGHT HERE.”

    Once I made it to our destination, I had a really good time and enjoyed my time away…especially getting drunk at lunch:)

    Seattle is a fab city – enjoy!!!

  6. 6

    Not to add more to your list (because you’ve got a great list!), but #27 made me remember, that whenever I left DD in the care of another (other than just a sitter for a few hours) I had a notarized letter stating that that person had our permission to seek medical treatment for our child, and include their insurance card. Printable sample here: http://singleparents.about.com/od/healthinsurance/ss/medrelease.htm and other instructions here: http://www.ehow.com/how_12694_write-release-allow.html Try to have fun on your trip!

  7. 7

    I know exactly how you feel! You will have a fantastic time though!!

  8. 8

    So because I’m a mom of older kids (14 and 11) and have done the “away from them more times than i can count now” list, I’m going to add to your Seattle list…

    1. Take a ferry to Bainbridge island and just walk…
    2. Visit the Chocolate Box on Pine Street and sample the chocolate covered bacon..delish.
    3. Go to the Seattle Aquarium
    4. Eat at Ivars…sit out on the pier and feed the seagulls your fries…order extra fries.
    5. Take your picture in front of the Gum wall on Post Alley…its both disgusting and cool.

    There’s so much more, its the most beautiful place ever..I’m so insanely jealous.

  9. 9

    I just came back from Seattle a few weeks ago, and I have to add a few as well. A few shops before the original Starbucks is a Russian bakery called, Piroshky Piroshky, and their pastries are to die for! I love them all – especially the beef and cheese. If you’re looking for some food to go with a cup of coffee, I highly recommend this place!

    Also, the gum wall is quite possibly the grossest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Yet, I couldn’t stop taking pictures….

    I would buy a bouquet of flowers at the market because (a) they are absolutely gorgeous and (b) they are only 10 bucks! I bought a few for my family as a thank-you for housing me during my stay.

    Have fun and bring an umbrella!

  10. 10

    Like everyone else, I know what you mean about leaving your little one, but Seattle is a great place to explore as a couple. If I had known Kate wasn’t coming, I wouldn’t have recommended the Ride the Ducks tour. Ok, maybe I still would have…(blush).

    Have a wonderful trip with G and have fun meeting jbhat! I’m glad you won’t experience the “Seattle freeze” and will make a new friend.

  11. 11

    I always look forward to reading your posts. They never fail at bringing a smile to my face :)

    Have fun in Seattle!

  12. 12

    We are so opposite in some regards! Hah! I made a list before our trip last weekend while bored during a meeting, I then promptly forgot to reference it once. The anxiety? We’re the same, everything else, not. :)

    Enjoy! Our weekend away was AMAZING for us.

  13. 13

    Thank you Carla!

    I’m slowly plugging away at it. Thank you Ashley!

    @CC: I had to stock the wine rack simply because it was empty. I couldn’t handle looking at it like that! It’s too sad!

    @E: I think G’s sister has lived out there for 6 years now and this is our first time visiting her. Every year we say we’re going to go, but we never do! Anxiety and worry aside, I’m really looking forward to it!

    @Anonymous: I shall now add “contact the President/National Security/FEMA/Secret Service” to my list. Thank you for the idea!

    @Kati: Great tip! I actually already have that taken care of, but your links are really helpful. Thanks for sharing!

    Thank you Amy!

    Love your additions to my Seattle list, Michele–thank you! I think we’re going to skip the Aquarium this time, only b/c I know it’s something Kate would LOVE (she’s nuts about fish right now) and I think it’ll make me really sad to go there without her. Next time we visit Seattle, though, we’re bringing Kate and that will be our first stop!

    @Manda: A gum wall? Oh I have to see this, lol! Thank you for the suggestions!

    @Alison: The Ducks was a great suggestion! I know Lesley and Ben have some kind of boat tour planned for us–not sure if it’s this one or not, but we’ll see!

    That’s such a sweet comment Nicole, thank you so much.

    Thanks Leah! So happy to hear you had such a great getaway; that’s wonderful to hear, and makes me even more excited for ours!

  14. 14

    I don’t even have a wine rack b/c I can’t seem to keep it stocked no matter how hard I try. =[ From one control freak to another, I totally support your list.

    Also, soooo jealous you’re meeting jbhat!! She’s been a long-time commenter on my blog too & I ALWAYS look forward to reading her comments. Love her!! Please tell her FC says HI!!!

    Have fab fun in Seattle! If you die (which you won’t, so stop it), I can be Kate’s go-to list maker if you want…unleash the list crazy biznatch.

    On second thought, it’s probably best that you try not to die.

  15. 15
    Anonymous says:

    OMG, I love that I get a mention in this post! I am soooooo excited to meet you, you don’t even know. If I had a blog, my posts right now would be all about getting to meet you while you are here.

    I was totally wondering what kind of getting-ready-for-a-trip kind of person you are, and wow, now I know. I am the same way. Lists, lists of lists, worry, fretting, outfit planning (I draw them, even), random cleaning of stuff that I NEVER clean on a regular basis but that must be spotless before I go…plus, I am pretty much on mental vacation for a week at work before I leave, and then don’t come down from having been away until about two weeks after I get back. My poor job.

    But I know you are going to have a ball here, and that your travel to and fro will be safe, fun, and drama-free. Kate will be FINE while you are gone, and Pam will be too. I hope she feels free to help herself to some of that wine in the evenings after Kate goes down.

    xo!!! See you so soon!!


  16. 16

    Have a great trip in Seattle. Random thought…but I would love to see a post about your wine recommendations and your go to brands that you stock that wine rack with!

  17. 17

    Make sure you go to Beecher’s for mac n’ cheese. It’s right across the street from Pike Place and down the street from the first Starbucks! Ah-maz-ing!!! Have fun!

  18. 18

    I am available to take care of number 30 for you. Just offering my excellent service.

  19. 19

    I have been reading your blog for years but never commented. But now I have to.

    I totally understand how you feel. We went on a trip without our son to a different country (we live on a small island so going anywhere is to a different country pretty much). I was a nervous wreck for weeks before trying to make sure anything he could possibly ever need was there. But in the end everyone had fabulous time. And no one died.

  20. 20

    Very Interesting topic.And All the things you mentioned were awesome.thanks for the post.

  21. 21

    Don’t worry, we Seattlites don’t bite…

    You know that the first Starbucks is AT Pike Place Market, right? Two birds, one stone! Also, make sure you go up to Kerry Park on Queen Anne Hill. So sorry our weather won’t be that great for you!

  22. 22

    I agree with Tara – I was just thinking that I’d love to take a peek at your wine rack! As as Oregonian I love all things wine related :]

    Have fun in Seattle! I second the Beecher’s recommendation. Best. Cheese. Ever. (Sorry, I know you’re from WI – hope we don’t have to throw down on this one.)

  23. 23

    Your list making skills are impeccable and completely NOT crazy. Or at least not in my world… We’re planning our first family vaca with what will be our 1 year old come November and I’ve already started with the lists! Right now, it’s just a couple lists of things to research, but seriously, the trip is 6 months away.

    Also, the day drunk? Mad jealous. Have fun!

  24. 24

    A fellow list lover!!! Love me some lists!! I am leaving my “guys” for 3 days to attend a conference next week, and pretty much have it ALL ready for my husband. Just in case, after 13 months, he doesn’t know where the extra diiapers are or to turn on the fan before D goes to bed, I have a list to remind him. I’m so helpful, right?!

  25. 25

    A fellow list lover!!! Love me some lists!! I am leaving my “guys” for 3 days to attend a conference next week, and pretty much have it ALL ready for my husband. Just in case, after 13 months, he doesn’t know where the extra diiapers are or to turn on the fan before D goes to bed, I have a list to remind him. I’m so helpful, right?!

  26. 26

    Every time I read your blog I get another “Oh I am just like that!” moment! LOL Although my husband and I don’t have kids yet, I am an insane list maker when it comes to vacation and life in general. We are leaving next Saturday to be gone 11 days and I am about to die from all of the things I think needs to be done before we go. I even have the list down to what needs to be accomplished each day so we get the most out of vacation! I think I drive myself nutso but it’s so bad that I have even gotten my poor husband on board because now he is all into making lists too! haha! =-) Anyways, have a fun trip and I will be sure to follow along on FB

  27. 27

    Not only do I make lists, I make them in excel on Google Docs. That way, when I think of something, I can add it wherever I am. Plus in excel I can calculate a percentage of completeness to measure how done I am. I do this for Christmas shopping, holiday tasks, party planning, new baby planning, traveling, and so much more. You are a sane person compared to my insanity. :)

  28. 28

    @Freckles: Hi there girlie, it’s so wonderful to hear from you! You’re smart not to have a wine rack–seeing it empty is SO SAD!

    @jbhat: I am jealous of your outfit-sketching abilities. I would totally steal that idea from you, except I suck at drawing. I should, however, adopt your “mental vacation from work” idea because I find myself doing the exact opposite. I take on a big task or major project just before vacation, giving myself my vacation start date as my deadline so I’ll “have it off my plate and not have to worry about it.” In theory it’s a great idea. In reality it’s a total disaster.

    @Tara: I’m about the furthest thing from a wine conniseuour you’re going to find. Right now my go-to wine purchase is Trader Joe’s Organic Chardonnay, hahaha.

    @Meg: Thank you for the recommendation! Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to Beechers this time, but if I can ever get Kate to start eating mac & cheese we’ll hit that place up next time we’re here!

    @Jeremy: Darn it, I could have TOTALLY used you! And if you were here to clean up my leftovers this list would’ve doubled because I would’ve also been putting your handyman skills to work. #31. Install a screen door. #32. Build shelves in the basement storage area. #33. New kitchen sink…

    @Lauren: Happy to hear everyone survived! Whew!

    @Jenny: Yep, we killed two birds with one stone. Didn’t check out Kerry Park though, which is a shame because I bet it’s close by. My SIL lives in upper Queen Anne.

    @Anna: Them’s fighting words! 😉 No Beechers visit this time, but we’ll be sure to hit it up next time!

    @Meg: I love your pre-planning. Hope you have a wonderful trip!

    @CampDallas: Oh I’m the same way, lol. Our poor husbands.

    Thanks Adinda! I hope you and your husband have a wonderful vacation as well!

    @Anne Marie: You win! Daaamn girl, that’s impressive. (And a little scary, lol!)

  29. 29

    @Jenny: While looking through our Seattle pics I saw a picture of a plaque reading “Kerry Park” about 2″ from me and G posing in front of an overlook. Duh. Guess we did make it there, hahaha!

Leave a Reply