Wednesday, September 30, 2009

DC Dreaming

The Solar Decathlon is nearly here. Yesterday, the house was wrapped and loaded on a truck, on its way to Washington, DC. The students are heading down to begin the massive amount of work it will take to get it operational and camera-ready. Ed Bagley, Jr. was here to speak, and joined us at the house. He said he was very impressed with the home, and worked hard to make Rowan laugh (though unfortunately he failed--she was in no mood and we ended up skipping his speech when she announced, "It's bedtime. I'm tired. I want a nap!") He was a very nice man, quiet and reserved, but friendly and kind as well. It was nice to hear that he thought the work the students were doing was so valuable, and that he had chosen to visit them from a host of other requests. They were so proud to share their work with him. (PS: the new season of Living with Ed begins soon!)

So now, we're trying to figure things out. As head Team Mom, I've got quite a job keeping 25 people healthy and fed, though I won't be able to be in DC the whole time due to obligations here in Academicsburg. Luckily for me, the team decided to fend for themselves the first week. The other parents who are visiting will help out when they arrive, so it won't be just me cooking for 25+ people (some of whom are vegetarians), and now I'm rocking Google Docs and Survey Monkey to figure out how to best "get 'er done". My dad and his wife are coming for a week, so we will plan to be there then, but otherwise I'll be driving back and forth in order to maintain attendance at my rehearsals (I'm in 3 music groups in town) and to take care of our furry family member, too. We are staying in a rented home in the DC area, which should make it easier as I'll have a gourmet kitchen at my disposal. We're heading down over the weekend to drop off Dr. B and to give me an idea of the lay of the land.

So, I've got a question for you. Do you have a favorite meal that's easy and serves a LOT of people? If so, please commment or link in the comments! I need all the help I can get.

And if you know a grocery store that delivers in the DC area, please let me know.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Strange Conversation

"I smell like Mommy!" Sniff sniff.

I looked at her quizzically. "You smell like mommy (loud fake sniff) or you smell like Mommy?" (pretends to loudly sniff own armpit.)

"I smell like Mommy!", she says, sniffing her armpit and grinning.

"Really, what does Mommy smell like?"

"Rowan!!!" she squeals, and collapses on the couch in a burst of giggles.

"OK, then, what do we smell like?"

"A candle! A green candle!"

There you have it. Apparently, Eau de la Mère is "Green Candle". I'm thinking of selling the idea to Chanel.

Monday, September 07, 2009

Labor Day

Like Mrs. Chicken said recently, I've been feeling rather blogstipated. Not much going on, and what is bugging me I can't necessarily blog about because I don't know if those people read me, and I think you're probably getting rather tired of the "what I did with the random crazy veggies in my CSA basket this week!" posts. (I know I am.)

This weekend was Labor Day, and we had no plans. As a kid, I always dreaded Labor Day. We'd be at the lake, it would rain, we'd have to turn on the space heaters and light a fire, wearing jeans and tennies with our big, thick, hooded sweatshirts. It was so dark, we'd have to turn on lamps to read, Jerry Lewis would be on the little black-and-white TV, and the next day was always the beginning of school. I would wake up with an ooky feeling in the pit of my stomach, and honestly, I can feel it right now just remembering. It was the end. The end of the summer, the end of the good weather at the lake, the end of the freedom to pack up and just go whenever we wanted. We were back to responsibility and tests and deadlines, school and rehearsals. Mom always looked so sad on Labor Day.

Being an at-home mom, I figured it would be different. No schedules, no set in stone plans, no school tomorrow. Of course, it would be sunny and we'd go to the pool and grill burgers.

Our grill broke. It was cold. It rained. I had to put on socks and turn on the lamp.

But, I did have Dr. B home for the day. So I made a plan. And we had fun.

We took Rowan to her first in-theater movie. "Up!" was playing at our cheap theater, so even if she got "skeered", we'd only be out 3 bucks. But she did fine. She spent much of the movie hugging me facing the back, but by the end she was loving it, and only cried when I told her she couldn't lick the seat backs as the final credits rolled.

We came out of the theater, and she smiled up at us and said, "I loved my first movie!" We decided to make a night of it, and had dinner out at Damon's, followed by tag-team book browsing at Barnes and Noble while Rowan played trains at the Thomas the Tank Engine train table. We bought nothing, but got ideas for library requests, and enjoyed the smells of new paper and coffee, bright colors and fresh pages.

We made our stab at defeating the Labor Day Blues. Can't do anything about the weather, but a movie, buffalo chicken pizza, and some retail therapy did help lift our spirits a bit. Sometimes, that's all it takes.
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