Dean is home this weekend to celebrate his birthday. Naturally the first order of business was presents.... He's taller than me by even more every time I see him, and he's extra happy these days after settling in enough at school to realize that the biochemistry major wasn't quite doing it for him. I think he needs just one more sign-off, and then he'll be an environmental and conservation biology major with a political science minor. Couldn't possibly be more delighted for him; there's a new spring in his step.
Driving home tonight, I heard the radio weather report describe current conditions as, "38 degrees, under milky skies." Milky skies. Never heard that on a weather report before, but it was totally and absolutely true. So very milky, even early this morning.
Because, you might not be sure what's inside a lemon? Because, we want you to know how kind of old and shrivelly these are on the inside?
Ken and I tend to be creatures of pretty mundane habit. Weekends are errands, and laundry, and cleaning up (at little -- not too much). He's been going every weekend for a long time -- has it been almost 2 years? -- to visit his mother whose health is rapidly failing; as her condition worsens, I see the toll it takes on him. So we've recently decided that we need to get out a little more. Maybe every 4 or 6 weeks or so, a meal out, maybe a movie -- and as soon as the weather turns and the snow is off the ground, we'll get out for weekend walks. Given that we kind of saw ourselves needing to make up for lost time (and because we each had a desire to catch a particular movie at the theaters), last weekend we saw the Lego Batman Movie, and today it was Beauty and the Beast. It's a cold and rainy day here, and after the movie we went out to linner (you know, mid-way between lunch and dinner).
World Cup soccer qualifying on the telly, two nice glasses of wine, and it feels like being on vacation.
Every morning on my way to work, I pass a Starbucks. I love -- and I do mean love -- a latte. But, it's expensive, and it takes time, and I probably only treat myself fewer than 5 mornings a year. I'd already kind of planned out, as part of my incentive to make it through the week, that I was going to stop this morning and as you see it ended up being two huge treats in one. Spectacular. And delicious.
There were several reasons why I ended up taking a longer-than-expected break from my morning workouts. Instead of letting the long break lure me into deciding that, eh, it's not worth the bother and whats'-the-point-since-I've-already-blown-it?, I told myself that past decisions made for good reasons didn't need to mean that I couldn't make new decisions going forward. Yes, I lost some ground I had gained, but I can get it back and keep focused on the big-picture plan (which is to age as healthfully as I reasonably can). It's easy to give up on doing hard things because of the past, isn't it? So I'm just looking out, thinking about what I can do in the future and not what I didn't do in the past. Here I go.
It sorta looked like the Sorting Hat, and then it didn't. Last day of vacation -- I guess it's making me a little crazy (the having to go back to work part, not the being on vacation part). I feel hopeful for the first time in a long time, given the news of the day - maybe being orange and crooked and on the way out is a thing.
Dean's quilt blocks, laid out on a bed sheet in order to make final design decisions. I tried the blocks in a number of different layouts, and Dean chose this one (also my favorite). And then Ken said, "well why not make it queen-size because then it will be more useful for him for longer?" So today I'll make 7 more blocks so I can add a column, and I'll make the run to the fabric store to find a nice steely blue for the borders. Tomorrow it's back to the office, so I probably won't be ready for basting for another week or so. Momentum. It's a thing.
And lunch, that's a thing too. A mid-day break for our favorite kind of snacky- tapas-y lunch, enjoyed along with watching the Liverpool game (a draw against Man. City leaves us barely hanging on to 4th). I think this is why Sunday was invented -- at least, for us.
And rounding out all the sewing with some collage work as well; next year's calendar gets launched. I make my calendar/weekly planner books every year, and having plenty of time to play with the art for around 54 pages or so feels like such a luxury. I love being able to just have this project running, and to do a little when the crafty feeling hits; I also enjoy the no-stress, no-pressure feeling of letting each page be what it is without worrying about it coming out a certain way. If you're intrigued, there are I think at least a few posts I've tagged with "calendars" that show other year's work.
I've got a few days off now; finally, the busiest of busy times at work has past, and with an eye on our school year-end, I've got vacation days that I'm actually allowed to use before they expire. I'm using a portion of my time to finish up the top of a quilt that's been in the works for Dean for too long (that is, too long in planning, too slow in the sewing) so that I can get it basted and start quilting it. I'm going to have it finished for him before he goes back to school in September (there, I've said it).
The forecast is calling for somewhere between one and two feet of snow -- 12 to 24 inches, 30 to 60 centimeters, I think -- to fall starting tomorrow morning. These will not survive. It's miraculous that they hung in this long, given the deep swings in temperatures and the snowfalls we've had since they first started poking up. Brave, them.
It's Sunday, NOW I've dropped Dean back off at school and have taken his friend back to the train station. It's the middle of the day and I'm sitting on the sofa watching TV -- which is kind of against my religion, but then Liverpool is playing, and that's a different part of my religion, so there you go. At least I waited until after 5 for a glass of wine.
I'm always fascinated by other people's groceries; I couldn't quite get over the yin and yang of this person's haul. Well maybe more yin than yang -- you can see the cookies, but you can't quite make out the PopTarts. Was she planning a get-together? I don't think it's her shopping for the week.... Who does she live with? I know -- but I'm just fascinated.
They say that we've got a major storm coming, and that today was just a taste. As though I didn't already know what snow, and winter, taste like. Apparently the late, heavy snows here are yet another sign of climate change.
OK, I realize that *sometimes* the challenge with not keeping up and then having a backlog of updating to do, I get days and weeks mixed up. Soooo, I'll have to go back and do a bit of editing, but in the meantime -- on this day -- Dean and Farid bringing the coffee. Thank God for Dean and Farid.
Dropped Dean's friend off at the train station so he can make his way back to Pennsylvania, where he's in school. Dropped Dean off at his dorm. Moved all the clocks ahead an hour. Drowned my sorrows, just a bit. Nope. Didn't happen yet. I don't quite know what my excuse actually was, other than knowing I was heading into a tough week at work.
Oh, it started innocently enough (as these things do). A conversation at the lunch table yesterday about the reception at the head of school's house tonight; it turned somehow onto the idea of how funny it would be to sneak something into Jane's house and just leave it there. A round of possibilities debated, and then I suddenly realized that I both had the perfect item AND the will to make it happen. And there it is -- the small resin pineapple with the tree of blackbirds on top. Oh, and there's an extra silly part of the story where, literally 30 seconds after I placed it, Jane herself walked up to me and pulled open the pocket on my jacket -- the very pocket where the pineapple had JUST been -- to drop in a raffle ticket for me. And did I win the raffle? Yes, I did.
My son, then about 4 years old, was being his wild self right at bedtime. I said, "no more monkey business!" in my best stern-mom voice, and he looked me gleefully in the eye and declared, "infinity more monkeys!"