The Harvest Dinner was lovely. Only one dish had meat in it, and most of the food was vegetarian. I made a roasted root vegetable baklava (read roasted veg in filo with some nuts) which was okay, but really needed some sharp feta thrown in it. I also brought two pumpkin cheesecakes, but since 10 people cancelled at the last minute due to illness we ended up only needing one. Big E worked, but was able to stop by for some pasta and the dessert course. Two slices of cinnamon chocolate cream pie (November Gourmet) and a piece of pumpkin cheesecake carried him through the rest of his shift.
Go by train, young woman. See the world! Escape the endless rotation of dirty clothes, laundry, clean clothes..
I love the transition of travel. That chance to sit in a cocoon of metal and glass, to feel the movement of miles passing you by, and to transform into a new, better, more relaxed Vacation persona. Feelings of obligations (laundry, dirty dishes, meals, who does what when) fall behind, and you are free of the daily battles of who touched who, and who started what. My only regret, as I boarded the train, was that Big E was not accompanying me.
Jen of Chrysanthemum fame, my most excellent hostess, met the train. Oh the shopping, the wandering, the exploring, the temptation to sell the farm to buy out a toy shop's front window. (Since I don't have a farm, so we were fairly safe...) I did spend some of my Holiday Market earnings at Impress... (Oh, but I could have spent so much more... ) Ms Chrysanthemum topped the day off with a home cookied dinner and fresh apple pie!! Double Yummm! Oh, and conversation. There was adult conversation around the dinner table. Very cool.
So.. remember Friday night? In a fit of frenetic Must Do Something I made capes for Ben and Lyra, the Chrysanthemum kiddos. Immediately after finishing the capes, I was beset by second thoughts... what if they didn't do dress up. The seven year old boy is a fickle beast from a foreign land.. girls I can predict.. but boys? Happily my worry was for nothing.. within about 20 minutes shields and swords had been manufactured followed by a request to sleep in their dress up goodies. I must admit my favorite part of the entire weekend was seeing the kidlets play with their goodies! Total bliss.
Saturday was followed by the most gorgeous Sunday November has ever seen. I woke up Sunday morning feeling refreshed, relaxed, and knowing that someone else had made the coffee. (This is what nirvana is like, right?) Jen and I met up with her knitting group and we boarded the ferry for Bainbridge Island. There was more food, more shops, more temptation, and wonderful companionship. I'm not sure I've ever met a more lovely, inclusive group of women! We made it back to Seattle with plenty of time for a quick tour of Pike Place Market, a quilt shop, the Japanese Dollar store (Sushi Grass!!), and Top Pot Donut. My train home was packed with football fans (who were warned that if they misbehaved the conductor would pull the train right over, and they'd have to walk home!*), but was amazingly quiet and uneventful.
I now have tons of ideas for projects and holiday treats, and the energy to get them started. This was the best 36 hour vacation EVER! Huge thanks to Jen, her family, and to the best damn knitting group Ever!
(*Okay, not quite.. but that was the general tone.)
I have been filling time. Tomorrow morning I am going to take the train to Seattle to have a Girls Weekend with a friend. I am so excited, so.. jittery, soo.. unsettled in my nerves. The persistent feeling that something is going to keep this weekend from happening must signify how much I need some time away, some time just being me.. not Mom, not wife, not school volunteer. So, to fill my evening I embarked on a last minute project, just to keep me out of trouble. The girls are prepped for my leaving. I have been instructed to:
1. Hug them goodbye, even if they are still asleep.
2. Write a message on our new chalk board (Thank you Oh My Stars!)
3. Make sure breakfast is available. (I bought pastries for a surprise.)
4. Be sure to remind them that they can watch a movie.
Now, I just have wind down enough to fall asleep.
The crows keep mocking me.
If I leave my camera at home:
They pose in front of me
within arms reach.
right over my head;
so close I can hear the papery rustle of their feathers.
If I have my camera in hand:
coquettish in all ways.
I know that I am not the only one.
Yesterday, as I was walking,
I saw two other women,
cameras in hand:
"Look, there! Three together! Quick!"
And then, before the lenses can focus,
they fly to the power lines and laugh at us.
Little e: Momma, when are you going to retire?
h.: Retire? Honey I don't think I'll ever retire.
Little e: Momma!
h.: Little e, my job is being your Momma and taking care of Dadda. I'll always be your Momma. How can I retire?
Little e: Hmph. (with eye roll.)
h.: What do you think my job is?
Little e: You sew. (with added "Mom's are so dense" attitude.)