October 04, 2004

A Wholesome Weekend

If you're looking for a post about the latest political kerfuffle, this isn't the one today. If you're looking for a throw back, 1950's kind of family values weekend, look no further than this report. It was, as my wife said, about as G-rated as a girl can get.


After breakfast, I read a Roald Dahl story, the Enormous Crocodile, to the Girl Child while my wife put the Boy Child down for his morning nap. Shortly after reading that, I passed out. I moved to the couch, lay down, and was completely unable to move, even as the Girl Child played the role of the enormous croc and came over from time to time to growl and try to eat my face. I think I just collapsed basically from exhaustion brought about by last week. I lay there, somewhat suspended between sleep and consiousness for anywhere between a half hour and an hour. When I got up, I took a shower, revived myself, and off we went.

We set off to go to one of the local church run pre-school fairs. It is their biggest fund raiser and is well attended. The weather cooperated with the rain holding off. There was a silent auction (we bid and lost) and rides and games. One of the rides was a great big slide. The kids climbed to the top and slid down in a bag and hit a huge puffy pillow at the bottom. The Girl Child wanted to give it a try. She had major problems getting to the top, though. One of the steps was broken and the way up was both steep and constructed from a slick industrial nylon. She did not give up, though, she kept trying until, with a little help from the guy at the top, she made it. She was quite triumpant and didn't even wait for the guy to help her get into position to slide down. She just put herself into her little bag and away she went. She loved it.

When we left, we drove by another church that was having a pumpkin patch benefit to raise money for their school. So we stopped and bought a couple of pumpkins to carve up for later.

We took the kids home for naps at that point and I went out to the gorcery store to buy all the necessaries to create a pot of chili. Well, almost all. There was no chipotle in adobo, which was a great disappointment to me and left the chili a little lacking somehow. Fall is here for sure and with it comes the need to cook things that simmer on the stove for a long time. Besides, I adore chili. While poking around in the freezer, just before beginning the chili making, I found that we had some Trader Joe's frozen dumplings, at least two different kinds.

So, when the kids awoke, they were very happy to be given dumplings for dinner. The Girl Child ate more than I would have ever expected a child of her age to eat and then came back after dinner and asked for more. The Boy Child was less enthralled.

Sunday dawned beautifully, although I admit to grumpiness. It passed. We loaded children into cars and headed up county about 40 minutes away to go to an apple orchard. At least, that's what we thought we were going to be doing, spending the day drifting from tree to tree and picking apples. No. Instead, the place was organized like a miniature county fair. It was great fun. There was a pumpkin patch and pony rides. We took a hay ride through one of the orchards and sang songs and just had a great time. We ended up buying some apples (Macoun, if you care) and pears and taking them home with us because we had exceeded the allotted time.

Then, driving back to the highway, we saw a sign for the Casafina warehouse sale. Casafina is an importer of Italian and Portugese hand painted ceramics. We are bad about these kinds of things and acknowledge that we possess little or no restraint. That said, we were pretty well behaved here and only bought a couple of things, including a wedding present for a friend.

After we got home and put the kids to bed, I worked for an hour and a half (got to remember to bill this), cleaned out the freezer, washed the kitchen down, unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher, took the recycling out to the garage, and washed all the new pottery stuff. A whirlwind of activity.

While I was doing this, the wife was out exercising outside where she reported a most unlikely sighting -- a Subaru sporting a Bush/Cheney sticker. A rare almost unprecedented occurrence.

When the kids awoke, we shoveled them back into the car to take over to my parents for dinner. My dad made Osso Bucco. It was the perfect end to the weekend. The kids put a silly cd on and danced with my dad while I cleaned up a little (after all, he did the cooking).

And to top it all off, the kids went straight to sleep. I should have bought a lottery ticket, you know?

Posted by Random Penseur at October 4, 2004 08:38 AM

Soudns like a wonderful fall weekend!

All that kitchen cleaning made me jealous :)

Posted by: Elizabeth at October 4, 2004 10:28 AM

Holy cow. It's like a walking version of "Pollyanna" at your house!

I'm envious :)

Posted by: Helen at October 4, 2004 01:34 PM

Sounds just lovely, RP. Hope you're rested & rejuvenated after this happy weekend!

Posted by: GrammarQueen at October 4, 2004 02:40 PM

Wow! That just sounds like a wonderful time!

You have a terrific family!!!

Posted by: Mick at October 4, 2004 02:42 PM

What a great weekend! Your missing chiles gave me the urge to mention how handy it is to freeze chipotles in adobo. When I get a can of them, I count the chiles, and puree them in the blender. Then I portion them in half-a-chile size dollops on plastic wrap and freeze. Cut between the lumps, wrap each individually in its surrounding wrap, and pop them in a freezer bag or box. I started doing this because we couldn't eat a whole can fast enough, but it has been very convenient. The little lumps thaw almost instantly in hot soup or stew.

Posted by: Terri at October 4, 2004 05:47 PM

Thanks for the hint, Terri. I'll have to give it a shot.

Thanks for all the nice comments, y'all. Actually, I feel not one little bit better rested than when I started the weekend. I think I need a vacation.

Posted by: RP at October 5, 2004 02:17 PM
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