Confession time. I kind of love bye weeks. Somehow we got two this season. I don’t remember this happening before but Google tells me the last time was in 2008... I can’t even remember five years ago anymore. I must be a sleep-deprived new parent.

Double bye week seasons occur when the first game is scheduled in August. We’ll see this again in 2014 and then not until 2019. I feel both disappointed and relieved. Like getting an extra day off from a job you love. We get to do something else for the weekend but don’t have to be sad that the season is over. Win-win.

It’s because I get so emotionally involved in the season. I plan my weekend around game time. I've recently starting worrying about how my baby's nap schedule fits in with the game schedule. It can be a bit much. Fall is so full of seasonal fun. Sometimes a girl just wants to take a hayride, drink some cider, and not worry about the score.

Because I can't not watch. I've got to see if they show the drum major flips on TV. I want to know who will set the tone with their opening drive. What if I miss that huge play and I can only see it in the highlights on (gasp) ESPN?!

I've never left Beaver Stadium early. Not the time my brother and I were in the very last windy row in the upper end zone. Not the time it was 30 degrees and torrential downpours and my friends were begging me to go. Not when we're destroyed and not when we're definitely winning. Not even when it's below zero and all the hot chocolate in the whole stadium is sold out. Never.

I'm sure this streak will come to a grinding halt later in the season when we visit Happy Valley with an infant. All the moms out there are giving me that "you're about to learn a lesson" look. We’re terrified. We're going to be brave! We’ll see how it goes.

Beaver stadium sure isn't helping us out. No bags at all, not even a diaper bag. That means my husband gets to walk around carrying a clear plastic gallon bag filled with diapers and wipes, burp cloths and teething rings. Safety first, right?

And I've just heard that my baby will need his own ticket. How ridiculous is that? He can't even sit in the seat. He'll be strapped to my chest in a baby carrier (soft, not structured, per the rules). I've not been charged admission for him anywhere yet in his young life because he's really just still an extension of me. We could fly on an airplane and not be charged for him, yet Beaver Stadium somehow requires it. Here’s hoping we can find a super cheap ticket.

Besides the fact that he’s young enough to need his mom, we can’t not take him. We've got to start him early, as all good Penn State parents do. Pretty soon we’ll be taking him for pizza, Creamery ice cream, and a trip to the bookstore. We want him to catch that Penn State fever so he can get a great education and so we can have an excuse to visit State College more often. Win-win.

dawns baby