Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Week of Tedium

And now for no particular reason (this is Chicago Randomness after all), I will attempt to blog everyday this week about the details of my ever so exciting days.

This morning Linnea woke me from a vivid dream around 8am. I don't remember the dream, but I've been having some doozies lately, which really means I haven't been sleeping all that well. I rejoiced to discover it was 8am and not 6:30am or whenever she often likes to get up. It was a good way to start a Saturday. For some reason I didn't feel the usual Saturday trip to Dixie Kitchen for brunch, so we just had the usual cereal and whatever. I did though have to get my coffee fix and the only coffee in the house was some weeks old ground coffee, so we walked to Starbucks. It was a fairly nice day and we ran into a couple of the high schoolers walking to the fabric store for Halloween costume fabric. Linnea was a little too antsy in Starbucks and I didn't get to sit and drink my coffee (opting to take it home instead). While we were in Starbucks I saw my co-worker V standing outside talking on his cell phone. I texted him that I could see him, but being on the phone he didn't get it until we had already left. On the walk home we saw more friends, A & her daughter G, in their car on their way out of town. One of the things I surprisingly miss about Durango is the small community and being known almost everywhere you go (that of course has its disadvantadges t00), and I think seeing all these people in one morning makes Evanston feel a little more homey to me than it usually does. Oh, and on our way out of Starbucks Linnea saw a family she knew. She said they were from Pope John, but I didn't recognize them.

Once we got home Linnea played with play-dough while I worked on a jigsaw puzzle that has been sitting on my dining room table for months with little action. Then lunch, then off to T-Ball. It's tough to watch a T-Ball practice and keep your mouth shut and not yell at your kid to get with the program, but I did a pretty good job. They actually played a slight approximation of a game today, which I hadn't seen before. They each had a turn to hit and field. Linnea didn't see any action in the field, and didn't seem to really be looking for any. She managed to get a modest hit on the 3rd or 4th try. When I pressed her later about her activities in the field she said her pants were falling down and thus she couldn't get into the "ready" position her coach had showed them. Not much I could say to that.

From there it was directly to Highland Park for a classmate's birthday party. This was a drop-off party so I had a little over an hour to kill in the neighborhood. I didn't know where anything was except Ravinia. I sought out a coffee place but went the wrong direction and drove pretty aimlessly for a long time before finally stumbling upon their downtown. I ended up in a Corner Bakery with a cup of soup and a coffee and my current read, "My Name is Asher Lev". When I got back to the party they were whacking at a Barbie pinata (I wouldn't mind hitting Barbie with a baseball bat). They had made caramel apples and had cake and ice cream. Kids apparently don't open presents at their parties anymore - I'm not sure what's up with that. Maybe kids are too honest in their reactions and it's to save feelings from getting hurt?

On the way home I got a call from my friend L who I hadn't heard from in ages and I was actually planning to call tomorrow as part of my effort every Sunday to connect with someone I've been out of touch with for too long. Some time ago we had discussed some furniture they were thinking of getting rid of and they had just come back from a rummage sale with some new stuff and wanted to get rid of the old. Since we were about to drive by their house anyway I asked if I could stop over and take another look at the stuff. I'm going to take a dining room table and chairs, but have to pass on a large computer work station (because it is a corner unit and I just don't have a suitable corner). The table will be nice though - I've had my current table since right after we got married. It's a hand-me-down from my friend's K&A who I've pilfered quite a bit of furniture from. It's a very sturdy table, but pretty beat up. The one I'm getting from G&L is also kind of beat up, but the big plus is it has a removable leaf and more, nicer chairs. So we hung out over there for a little bit and said hi to the kids and helped them move some of the new furniture, but they were pretty busy so we didn't stay long.

We came home and I made a grocery list and we headed off to Jewel. It only took about 5 minutes for me to insist Linnea sit in the cart, which meant I had to listen to her complain about it for the rest of the somewhat lengthy shopping trip. I ran into one of the same high school kids, with a different friend, also from our church, who were shopping for items to make dinner for one of our church families. I made Turkey Burgers, fries (frozen bag), and sugar snap peas. The Turkey Burgers and peas were from a new recipe book my mom sent me that it supposed to be healthy kid friendly food. The recipes don't try to be cutesy kid stuff, which I appreciate. The burgers were pretty good. It was silly in that I had bought Turkey patties forgetting that I was going to mix a bunch of stuff in, so they ended up in a big wad anyway. They were cooked in the broiler and came out a bit dry, though Linnea liked the homemade tartar sauce from the recipe. The peas were also pretty good, which is saying a lot for me since I'm not much of a cooked green vegetable kind of guy. They were a frozen bag that you put in the microwave without piercing it or anything. They come out nicely steamed. The recipe added a peach preserve and soy sauce glaze. It was also supposed to have some ground ginger in it, which I had bought but forgot to put in. I'll try that next time. I also made a tollhouse cookie type recipe that is still cooling. I'm concerned I undercooked it. It took me two tries already. The first batch I accidentally put in twice the flour and put the egg in at the wrong time. Luckily I abandoned it before I used up all the chocolate chips. I had enough of everything else to try again. I've done very little baking and had to buy the right size, pan but was pleasantly surprised to discover that I still have a hand mixer. Linnea tried to help and did a surprisingly good job with the hand mixer, but it was after her usual bedtime and I had been cooking too long, so we were both grouchy and it wasn't a good mix.

Well off to try those cookies and unwind a bit. Until tomorrow, when I hope to use shorter paragraphs.

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