Mise en Place

Everything in its place

TGIF

  • Only billed 32 hours this week - that’s better!
  • Watching Ecuador and Honduras playing in Curitiba; some of the best Italian food I have ever had was in Curitiba.
  • Stripping woodwork in the kitchen - someone painted the WOODWORK pink at some point.
  • I forgot how ugly the parquet floor under the Pergo was.
  • We looked at granite today, and are thinking of one called Blue Ice (more grey, really.  I need to see the slabs before I can decide.
  • Looking for counter stools in natural maple that are comfortable.  Suggestions welcomed.
  • Looking forward to going to the farmer’s market with Em tomorrow.
  • The internet is very slow today!
Someone once painted this kitchen these colors.

Someone once painted this kitchen these colors.

I drove to Iowa Friday to visit my sister.  It’s a bit of a boring drive, but it’s under 3 hours if I can leave before rush hour.  I love spending time with Gretchen - we laugh a lot (as long as we refrain from conversations about religion or politics).  Friday night, we went to their favorite Mexican restaurant with my niece, her husband and son, my brother-in-law’s 93-year-old mother who is recovering from her 2nd broken hip since December, and an assortment of their friends.  I refrained from margaritas because they are too sweet there and I knew my head would throb all day Saturday.
Saturday morning, Gretchen dragged me out of bed at 6 am and handed me my packet for the Quad Cities Race for the Cure 5K.  Why is my bib color different from yours and why is my number lower?  Oh wait, you registered me as a competitive runner?  Hilarity ensued, because we all know I don’t run.  Ever.
It was a beautiful morning for walk.  The course ran through some neighborhoods; the Mexican part of Moline was particularly cool, with houses decorated, people playing music and cheering on the participants.  One house was particularly poignant, with a banner that said “You are walking in memory of…” with names of 2 family members who had died from breast cancer.  
The rest of the day was spent visiting cool little shops, lunching and talking, then back to their house.  My nephew and his girlfriend arrived with their 1-year-old for a visit.  Observing their parenting skills made me bite a hole in my tongue.  Even though they are engaged, snide little comments to each other and their body language made me feel that the relationship is not going to succeed.  After they left, I started to bring up whether they had a date for their wedding yet, but my sister cut me off with a “Don’t ask.”  Sad.
I left early Sunday to drive home for Father’s Day, but Lou had already left for the White Sox game with Peter by the time I arrived, so I had the afternoon to prep for the Father’s Day dinner with the kids.  Em and Mike brought burgers and pretzel buns, I made hot potatoes and a Caprese salad, and Emily made a delicious banana pudding for dessert.  I love when the kids come over
Nice weekend!

I drove to Iowa Friday to visit my sister.  It’s a bit of a boring drive, but it’s under 3 hours if I can leave before rush hour.  I love spending time with Gretchen - we laugh a lot (as long as we refrain from conversations about religion or politics).  Friday night, we went to their favorite Mexican restaurant with my niece, her husband and son, my brother-in-law’s 93-year-old mother who is recovering from her 2nd broken hip since December, and an assortment of their friends.  I refrained from margaritas because they are too sweet there and I knew my head would throb all day Saturday.

Saturday morning, Gretchen dragged me out of bed at 6 am and handed me my packet for the Quad Cities Race for the Cure 5K.  Why is my bib color different from yours and why is my number lower?  Oh wait, you registered me as a competitive runner?  Hilarity ensued, because we all know I don’t run.  Ever.

It was a beautiful morning for walk.  The course ran through some neighborhoods; the Mexican part of Moline was particularly cool, with houses decorated, people playing music and cheering on the participants.  One house was particularly poignant, with a banner that said “You are walking in memory of…” with names of 2 family members who had died from breast cancer.  

The rest of the day was spent visiting cool little shops, lunching and talking, then back to their house.  My nephew and his girlfriend arrived with their 1-year-old for a visit.  Observing their parenting skills made me bite a hole in my tongue.  Even though they are engaged, snide little comments to each other and their body language made me feel that the relationship is not going to succeed.  After they left, I started to bring up whether they had a date for their wedding yet, but my sister cut me off with a “Don’t ask.”  Sad.

I left early Sunday to drive home for Father’s Day, but Lou had already left for the White Sox game with Peter by the time I arrived, so I had the afternoon to prep for the Father’s Day dinner with the kids.  Em and Mike brought burgers and pretzel buns, I made hot potatoes and a Caprese salad, and Emily made a delicious banana pudding for dessert.  I love when the kids come over

Nice weekend!

Lou’s doctor used the word REMISSION today in a sentence!!!

Lou’s doctor used the word REMISSION today in a sentence!!!

Great weekend - the kids (minus Em, who was attending a baby shower) came down on Saturday and helped with the kitchen destruction.  We got some walls down and some cabinets removed.  Whoever last remodeled this kitchen never met a piece of wood they didn’t nail to another piece of wood.  It was sort of like: “I can’t find a 2x4, so I’ll just nail a couple of 1X2s to a couple other 1X2s and then shim it when I don’t nail it correctly.”  It feels a little like archeology.

Sent a note to our contractor with some random thoughts I’ve had.  He is so going to hate me by the time this project is over.

Happy Friday Thoughts

  • I’m on my final conference call of the week.  I love listening to the Finance guys talking theoretical and the Inventory guys talking practical.  It’s like the Greeks talking to the Chinese.
  • Finally peed out the last of the kidney stone!  The doctor gave me a list of foods to avoid so as not to have a reoccurrence.  Probably going to ignore it, and stick to the drinking more water and moderation in all things.
  • Ordered the Baby S jail this week.  Feeling a little less “bad Grandma” now.  
  • After this interminable call ends, I’m going for a haircut.  A little “me time” that does not involve medical personnel.
  • This afternoon, we are going to go order a boatload of very expensive appliances.  We are calling American Express before we go to forewarn them that this is coming to avoid the hassles that come when one puts a large purchase on a credit card.
  • Kitchen destruction is underway, even though we won’t be able to start construction until August.  We need to get some of the walls down so the cabinet guy can come and do some measurements.
  • I need to sort through all the stuff from my kitchen, and decides what stays and what goes.  Some things have some sentimental value, others are just odds and ends collected over time.

Have a great weekend!

There used to be 2 tomato plants here.  Do squirrels eat tomato plants?

There used to be 2 tomato plants here.  Do squirrels eat tomato plants?

I had to go back up to Canada this past week for the project. One of the things I have always loved about business travel is the uninterrupted evenings of reading.  I made the most of my 4 nights in Toronto by reading these books from 2 of my favorite authors.  Not my favorite from either of them, but very solid reads.

I’m looking for something for my upcoming week in Montreal.  Suggestions?

shortformblog:


The horizon leans forward,Offering you space to place new steps of change.Here, on the pulse of this fine dayYou may have the courageTo look up and out upon me, theRock, the River, the Tree, your country.
No less to Midas than the mendicant.
No less to you now than the mastodon then.
Here on the pulse of this new dayYou may have the grace to look up and outAnd into your sister’s eyes, intoYour brother’s face, your countryAnd say simplyVery simplyWith hopeGood morning.

An excerpt from “On the Pulse of Morning,” Maya Angelou’s 1993 inaugural poem for Bill Clinton.
Angelou died this morning at age 86.

She made words sing.  RIP

shortformblog:

The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.
Here, on the pulse of this fine day
You may have the courage
To look up and out upon me, the
Rock, the River, the Tree, your country.

No less to Midas than the mendicant.

No less to you now than the mastodon then.

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

An excerpt from “On the Pulse of Morning,” Maya Angelou’s 1993 inaugural poem for Bill Clinton.

Angelou died this morning at age 86.

She made words sing.  RIP

Becoming Grandma

I  haven’t posted anything to date about how I feel about becoming a grandmother.  Everyone who has grandchildren tells me how wonderful it is, Lou keeps insisting we will shower them with drums and puppies and send them home, and I suddenly feel like I am caught up in the competitive Grandma game.  So here’s how I feel right now:

  • I can’t imagine loving a child more than I have loved mine, from the day they were born to today and forever.  The thought that Em and Mike will experience that fills me with incredible joy.
  • My relationship with Em will become different, not better or worse, but different.  We will talk about different things, priorities will be different, we will have more in common and less in common.
  • I want to be the doing-things Grandma:  baking cookies, walks, trips to the zoo, museums, parks, coloring books and crayons, making things, and talking.  Always talking.