Monday, November 26, 2018

In Others' Words

Men At Forty by Donald Justice, 1967.

Men at forty
Learn to close softly
The doors to rooms they will not be
Coming back to.

At rest on a stair landing,
They feel it moving
Beneath them now like the deck of a ship,
Though the swell is gentle.

And deep in mirrors
They rediscover
The face of the boy as he practices tying
His father's tie there in secret,

And the face of that father,
Still warm with the mystery of lather.
They are more fathers than sons themselves now.
Something is filling them, something

That is like the twilight sound
Of the crickets, immense,
Filling the woods at the foot of the slope
Behind their mortgaged houses.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Weekend Fun

On the eve of another weekend, here is a recap of our very busy, very fun weekend:

Friday night: Luke had a gig. Jenny and I had dinner with friends at Yellowbelly in the CWE - delicious! And they accidentally brought us an extra order of fries.  Surprise fries = always great

Saturday: the girls had their tennis lesson and Luke and I played on an adjacent court. I have not played tennis in over seven years. Eight years? I like fitness classes of all sorts but nothing is better than playing a game. Adult beginner classes, here I come...

I was so proud of myself for scheduling holiday family photos in the summer (every year the holiday cards start arriving and I think "oh yeah...") and our date was moved up a day due to rain. This was fortuitous because I had already scheduled haircuts for the girls that Saturday.

After tennis we went to the Hair Lab and Kellee trimmed C's hair and (because we were running late) braided Josie's hair:

One Dutch braid on the right and a regular braid on the left, looped upon each other into the cutest 'do I've ever seen!

(Looking into mannequin heads on Amazon to practice these braids. Cheaper than you'd think - just as creepy as you'd think)

PHOTO SESSION! It was so fun to catch up with JJ, who shot our wedding, and I am thrilled with the images she captured! Our yard (and the neighbor's) were aflame with fall color.

Fireside dinner of deli meat, tomatoes, and strawberries for these fancy ladies:

Before we headed to family yoga, a once monthly course I signed us up for. (Luke and I both were sore afterwards.)

As we walked by the doors leading to the now-drained outdoor pools, Clementine exclaimed:

                                                               "The Eiffel Tower!"

Then my friend from out of town Ubered over - whom I haven't seen in five years! - and we had a lovely visit. Crossing my fingers she moves back to STL!

Sunday: I went to spin class and took these guppies swimming. This photo cracks me up.

The girls and I were in the pantry picking out a noodle for our pasta lunch when I dropped a bag that burst on the floor. I was mad at myself and groaned inwardly about having to clean it up but Clem said eagerly, "Now we have noodles to make art!" And she picked them all up and began making a sign for the bag: NODLS MAD(e for) ART.

Clementine's teacher gave us the instruction to let her spell things freely to boost her confidence rather than spell words for her. C is also showing signs of being hamstrung by perfectionism (a characteristic I share and one that has kept me from trying so many things) so I offered her this incentive: anything she wrote on a grocery list (food only - no loveys or balloons!) I would buy. (Luke: I have some suggestions.)

Here is her list:

Apples and clementines and more carrots and pumpkin muffies [a la Panera] and cheesy dibble popcorn*

*this is a family joke originating from Penguins of Madagascar, a hilarious movie. The voice acting is so good.

And strawberry ice cream and vanilla ice cream and more mango and salami and ham and bread.

Sorting laundry with these "helpers" after they returned from dance class.

Clem got the idea to decorate the dinner table for a party, bringing up the party supplies from the basement:

Centerpiece: Halloween pumpkin

Photo of my parents plus a dinosaur figurine

Baby all ready in the booster seat.

Party decorations:

Party planner with the unicorn she crafted out of a box, topped with a headband crown.

For dessert I made espresso creme brulee in the pressure cooker - didn't set quite enough but the edge was perfect! Dinner was chicken breast cooked with a jarred tikka masala in the pressure cooker (trying to get my money's worth!)

Looking forward to a visit with Luke's parents this weekend and maybe a tiny bit of downtime ,  lessons, and some cooking (Clem has requested a Dutch baby for breakfast).