Showing posts with label Dinner. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dinner. Show all posts

Friday, November 27, 2020

Sweet Meh-mories

One child sets the table; the other punches them.

And then they both stomp around shouting "Where the food go/Where does the food go?" until it becomes a chant. Not sure if they're asking where the food went or where the food should be placed. But they're laughing too much to tell me. Then it becomes a song and somehow even after many, many hours on my feet, it really seems infectiously funny rather than annoying. Eventually, the table is set; Big A gets some photos; we eat. It's "the best Thanksgiving meal ever/really knocked it out of the park" for the 10th or 11th year in a row. All these dorks are nothing but kind.

There was an aborted game of You are a Liar and another of Coup, and the Criterion edition of The Gold Rush and more of L's pumpkin pie and Big A's whipped cream. Repeat.

So grateful. Really don't know how I would make it without these two and the rest of my crew. (11/26/2020)

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Just us

(Huckie must already be at the table starting without the rest of us.)

A couple of "trunksgiving" exchanges (LB+TB)
a couple of food drop offs (SB + KS)

It wasn't last year, or even close to our regular but it was happy.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020


My babies are beautiful. 

(These human babies and also the two puppy babies asking for scraps by my side.)

Sunday, November 08, 2020

The Start of Something

Pumpkin Spice and Fundamental Rights cakes got made (and eaten); a neighborhood celebratory bonfire was attended; toasts were made; picnics were packed and consumed. I'd say the new regime is better already. Ha.                                                                                                                                             But seriously, we need to do better. Marianne Williamson (of all people!) sounds the call in Newsweek: "Now a battle will rage for the soul of the Democratic Party. And well it should. It's been needing to happen for a very long time."

Friday, November 06, 2020

And Another One

This is the other snake--from yesterday. Today has been very homebound. But also, today is yet another repeat of yesterday. 

Is it possible to be full of nervous energy and simultaneously enervated? Yes, yes it is. Time to call it, CNN!

I was kind of glad to have a planner full of class and meetings at hourly intervals all day, so I could go from one to prepping for the next. I may have rambled at a few of them (two nights of low no sleep will do that to me) and then the internet was all cute and hide-and-seeky-y. But I managed. The day is done.

But I've done so little at home today except find time to cuddle with everyone for comfort. We're still eating pizza from yesterday... I mean after all, Big A did order four pies for three humans. 

Nu and I had planned to make another batch of the awesome "Pumpkin Spice and Fundamental Rights" cakes we made on election day. We gave/swapped so many away and Nu and Big A want more. As they reminded me, they want more, they want more, when you like something, you want more! But the baking will have to wait until tomorrow.

Thursday, November 05, 2020

"Zero at the Bone"

I met one of Emily Dickinson's narrow fellows this morning, while out with L. In fact, we met two. 

TBH, I thought the rest of the day would hold more excitement, but it was just a pattern of waiting, a fever of refreshing between class work and meetings, and ultimately not much else.

I was nervy all day--too nervy to make dinner--so we got pizza from Jolly Pumpkin, vegged, and watched an ep of The Queen's Gambit--and lo, all of this was good, but I kept checking Twitter for something better.

Monday, November 02, 2020

The Future

At was briefly in town so he could deliver his absentee ballot to the drop box. !YAY! Also, it's the second of the month and hence his 'Boss Day,' so he got even more extra hugs and presents and picked dinner (mint chicken again). 

Because he's the best big sib ever, he roped Nu into researching all the school board candidates. I love this picture of my human babies so serious and so oblivious to me.

This morning at a student-vocation discussion, the lack of students' "grit" was generally mourned. I dissented--this generation's lives are challenging in a way ours never was.

(Scout's tail behind Nu's chair as he petitions for more pets, lol.)

Saturday, October 24, 2020


I just typed, "I wonder if golding is an adjective..." 

(Big A has turned off the wifi for some maintenance, so I can't check online, but there's no squiggly red line so at least it's a word? If "greening" is a Spring time word, "golding" ought to be an Autumn word!) 

Anyway, I feel "golding" best describes both the turn of the woods and my delight. 

A long giggly conversation with my Chelli around 4 am*, then a little snooze, an early morning hike with L (from whence this photo), and then a long day on my feet doing necessary stuff that had been displaced by this past week of deadlines. Some of Big A's birthday dinner and cupcakes dinner to L, and then a leisurely dinner with the fam. Very minimal discussion board monitoring, some class prep, a handful of student emails, and now to curl up with my N.K. Jemisin. 

* AM, Chelli's old classmate and now a mutual friend, had forwarded a video of George Baker singing "Paloma Blanca," apparently a song Chelli and I used to bug her with. It's amazing how the song reached us at all (perhaps through VM who sailed a lot in those days?), and we were amused that we didn't even know what the title meant, but would just belt it out anyway. Hilarious.

Sunday, October 04, 2020

And still, we...

Does Huckie look sad? I think Huckie looks sad.

If I squint, Big A looks sad too.  (God, I miss his stubble--he has to shave for the N-95.) I think we're all at least a little sad. And I don't know what to do about it.

A serious chat with KB yesterday (parts of our families are so far away); another one with JL + Henry the pup with soup drop-off and commiserations and apologies (I thought her new number was her stalker contacting me for info and had blocked it); and some plans that didn't make with LB and BS. 

But still, we're ok: Turns out, the class I thought started Monday actually starts on Friday (a student alerted me!), so I'm sitting pretty on prep; Nu had a nice RE camp at UU (typically a weekend, but three hours in the pandemic); got all caught up in At's latest exploits via text; and I got Sansu sushi today after more than six months!*

*I thought we were six months into the pandemic--but as Stirrup Queens reminded me, we're eight months in. EIGHT. So I'm redoing the math--I haven't had Sansu in over eight months.

Saturday, October 03, 2020

Making Mean-ing

I mean, I must have known in my bones this morning. 

After all, when Big A came home from work looking kinda tired, I asked (sincerely) if he wanted me to butter his muffin... 

Then At wished us a happy Mean Girls Day on family chat and we remembered... Nu thought we should watch it after dinner... and so we did.

It made me nostalgic for all the Mean Girls parties we've had in the last 15 years. The last one was in 2018 for my first-year seminar students and they laughed at the mom-style menu-puns almost as much as I did.

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Wild Things

All of this made me quite anxious.

All of this made me very happy.


I chaired the WGS sessions of the MASAL conference from home; finalized the WLC second-seven week course syllabus; worked on Nu's birthday plans; hiked with L; practiced saying "fiddly," "wobbly," and "stodgy" in preparation for watching GBBO later in the evening... Full day.

Saturday, September 05, 2020



Today's quiet beginning--the Red Cedar River, someone's rock cairns, a blue heron waiting by the rapids, the solid comfort of L's footfall, patience, and advice by my side...

The rest of the day was gloriously kid-centered--only fair as I hadn't seen At all week, and actually--hadn't seen much of Nu all week between breakfast and dinner. The 21-year-old and the 12-year-old have been busy in the first weeks of school... as have I.  I did a ton of stuff before 10 am, including conferencing with a colleague about a new course. Then Nu and I drove up to Alma, bringing At's (delayed) Boss Day presents and treats with us. We met At at the MUN House and took a walk away from campus, each of us taking turns to call out which way we should head next. Then back-hugs and presents, and declarations of love. And love.

Nu and I headed to the new bookstore helmed by D whom we loved as our pastor when we used to go to Mt. Pleasant UU. And we visited, and congratulated, and browsed, and bought a pile of books. Then on to the antique store next door where I found a few bird-themed tchotchkes and Nu found old teddy bears (Big A's grandmother Louise--whom Nu never met--used to run a teddy bear hospital, so I find Nu's attention to teddies especially endearing). Then a conversation at the store with D and J  about their child K--an old student--and all three of us fittingly so happy and proud of her grad degree and the important work she's doing. One more stop to drop off a present for Nu's friend K and then finally back to Lansing. 

But wait! There's more! Nu actually has another outdoor playdate later in the evening--watching the new Mulan outdoors at a friend's place, and I drop them off. For the first time in months, Nu is not at home when I am. Next stop, I zoom to a virtual retirement party for J and M, and after an hour and half of stories and memories, I get choked up saying goodbye, although there's no way J and I won't be friends for a few more decades at least. 

And then after the nonstop social rush of the day, the absolute loneliness of the evening hits me. At is at college, Nu at M's, Big A napping before his night shift, Scout and Huck napping alongside him and not even caring about dinner time...  

Then the puppies wake up, and I feed them. And Big and I settle in with leftovers (the remains of the coconut soup and pao he'd made for my Boss Day yesterday!) to watch the first ep of Raised by Wolves--which is terrifying. I keep exclaiming about my heart thumping so hard--until Big A reaches for my wrist, counts my pulse, and tells me I'm fine. I'm so not. Doctors are so literal. Haha. 

Now to stay awake until it's time to pick up my Nu...

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Back to School Party

At goes back to college on Friday and Nu starts school (online) on Monday, so it was time for my little monsters to have their annual back-to-school party. 

I made a playlist to share with them; they got some loot--a clean-start calendar, chakra stones to keep under their pillows, essential oils to boost immunity, lucky bamboo for the rest of 2020, water bottles for hydration (listed like that, I can see I skewed pandemic new-agey there!); and got pampered with facemasks and a mama pedicure while they watched a movie. 

All they had to do was pick out dinner and a movie. The dinner pick was easy-peasy (mint chicken), but picking out a movie took some time. They cycled through Ten Things I Hate About You and Clueless and Mean Girls and Napolean Dynamite and School of Rock

And then they began to improvise--Inglorious Basterds? I mean he taught Hitler A LESSON." Hahaha. I love my babies. They finally settled on Monsters University

Monday, August 17, 2020

All the work and enough play

Scout gets so much love just being Scout! I'm not that lucky, so I have to work hard to make sure people are happy with me. 

But I worked so super hard today, I'd accomplished all the work stuff that needed to get done. And it was just 2:00 pm. I'd even managed to email all my students AND advisees AND independent scholars in a serious yet supportive way (or so I hope). 

That was the point at which I decided I deserved a massage. Big A was grilling for dinner, so I managed to bag an appointment with someone new, and off I went. 

I made it back in time for icy lemonade and coconut-y tomato gravy and dinner jokes. Long after everyone went back indoors, I hung out by myself listening to distant traffic, taking snapshots (memory/camera) of the sky, and pulling together songs for a 2020 playlist. 

Saturday, August 15, 2020

Mid-August Notes

It's India's Independence Day and today's dinner is supposed to be reminiscent of the flag (maybe you have to squint a little bit?). I'm not a fan of the ethnostate India is under Modi, and I miss-miss-miss old-style India-day "unity in diversity" celebrations.

It was Fall term prep all day over here. Also, locking down meetings next week in my calendar helped--instead of holding hazy, all-day items in my head, I now have specific times and that's doing wonders for my general sense of preparedness and well being. 

I kept getting adorable texts all morning from bestie KB and mock called her out for procrastinating via text message. Then I went off on a tangent myself and did some editor-stuff for the current issue of Jaggery (needed to be done, but not right now). At least it got done?  I did a ton of other more normal procrastination as well, putting stuff in various online shopping carts and re-watching a few eps of Veep.

Friday, August 14, 2020


Outside at the picnic table (it's sad the playset it came with stayed behind two whole houses ago) my parents gave us when Nu was a toddler. 

The weather is perfect and the days are golden, and... At goes back to college in exactly one week.

In preparation for the goodbye, I binged Watchmen with At, which meant I had to watch a recap of the Alan Moore graphic novel and have At telling me every hour or so that Alan Moore is an anarchist and pointing out anarcho-stylistic elements I missed. I have no doubt that in two weeks I'll be thinking of this fondly as "good times." 😝

Sunday, August 09, 2020


We were all looking forward to Big A's pizza at dinner--handmade, made-from scratch crust, homemade sauce, personalized toppings, and all. But while the kids were showing me a video essay on D.B.Cooper (wild, that!), Big A popped in and sheepishly asked if I could help him with something.

"How do you turn on the oven?" Kind of the cliche-est of man questions, but not really as our oven has a multi-step process involving dials and several buttons--a process I'm liable to forget myself without regular practice. So I started to breezily and oh-so-cockily show him--but umm... nothing. The panel wouldn't respond at all; the ovens just wouldn't turn on. So much for my lady-expertise.

So here we are, all lined up at the counter,  getting ready for Big A's newly-invented, cast-iron griddle fired, stovetop pizza. 

And it was delicious. 

Friday, August 07, 2020


A low-energy day--I didn't even get out for my afternoon walk with Big A. We did what we call a Downton (walking around our own grounds à la  Downton Abbey, haha). And then I made a clear-out-the fridge ragout for dinner as my Imperfect box arrives tomorrow.                                                                                                                                                  We're in a shameful place that all the world sees; that's true. But today I needed McSweeney's to laugh in my face at the idea of making sense. Not to pile on people sending kids to camps, but if you're up for for a self-deprecating laugh along, Carlos Greaves compares children's activities in the pandemic to reopening Jurassic Park"Given these great stats, I think it should be pretty clear to everyone that reopening the Jurassic Park Academy for Young Paleontologists this fall is the right move. Sure, a few kids have been mauled this summer at our popular sleep-away camp, Camp Triceratops. However, a hands-on learning environment that comes with hiking throughout our vast preserve remains an invaluable experience for the kids — an experience that far outweighs the occasional mauling. Plus, keep in mind that children are far less likely to be killed by velociraptors, mostly because they are too small and bony to make for a satisfying velociraptor meal."

Sunday, August 02, 2020

Modality: Baleful

The tiniest member of the family has the most terrifying glare.

(This is because At wouldn't share his Boss Day mint chicken with Huckie Bear anymore.)

Monday, July 06, 2020

Food (related) notes

These are the first of At's tomatoes and he has high hopes about serving them with breadcrumbs and mozzarella whenever they he happens to be ready.

I watched a few eps of the new Masterpiece/PBS orientalist fantasy Beecham House--somehow simultaneously overblown and underdone. William Dalrymple is a historical consultant on the show and it's directed by Gurindher Chadha, but despite those two it's really, really bad. I got so irritated almost immediately that the hindi dialogue gets mentioned but not translated e.g., "X speaks in Hindi"--What did he say?! How could it not matter?! Anyway, it inspired "Anglo-Indian" elements at dinner prep time--the peach chutney, ghee toast, and curry-poached cod came together from whatever we needed to use up before our Imperfect Foods box arrives tomorrow and the steamed veg was tongue-in-cheek homage to stereotypical Brit cuisine/me running out of time and imagination.

At dinner, it got us talking about trips to England (especially last year's "Cosmopolitan England" Spring term trip) and all the good meals we've eaten there (some straight out of Sainsbury's). I miss travel.