May 25th, 2004

bundled up, walkabout, snow

Friday

Friday, I drove the boys to school, and stayed for Spring Sing.

Critter gave me a scare: as he was getting out of the car, he mentioned that he had an afterschool party, and he thought it would be over by 7pm. This would mean completely missing the window of opportunity for opening his present, as Matt was planning to leave the house around 5pm. Fortunately, I saw T's Mom on the way to Spring Sing, and she set me straight on the party: it ran from 6 to 8. It turns out I had the party in my calendar all along, but I've been awfully scatterbrained the last week or so, about schedules.


Spring Sing is a program put on by preschool through 3rd grade. Only, the preschool has gotten so big that they split it into two programs. The first year they split it, they tried to have two performances with all the children, which meant parents weren't invited to see their children perform, which led to hard feelings. Now, they have a separate Preschool Spring Sing, and Primary Spring Sing. The third graders learn to play the recorder, and this year, they participated in a Karate-like program of recognition for each song they memorized. The "belts" were actually strings of yarn of many colors. The program was entertaining. I like the sound of children's choruses, and the children were very good at playing their recorders.

After the spring sing, I picked up enough beer at the Liquor Barn to fill up the various empty spots we have in our cooler, picked up plumbing supplies at Home Depot, dropped by Kennedy's (and then Schumaker's) to pick up more screen filler fluid, and made a short run to Kroger. None of my stops provided graduation wrapping paper, so I zipped over to The Party Store for that. I didn't have a lot of time at home before it was time to go pick up the boys; I filled it with lunch and wrapping Critter's presents.

When we got home from school, we let Critter open the presents. He absolutely loved the I-Book, and he got to use his phone right away, when my mom called him on it, to see how he liked the I-Book. :)

Flar then became a whirlwind of activity. It seems that a particular development deal that has been planned for some time saw the financing fall through at the last moment. He put together an alternative that would work, but he had to get some paperwork to the bank involved by 6pm. I drove him by the bank, then dropped off Critter at TLS for his party, and finally dropped off Flar at the airport to pick up a rental car for the drive to Atlanta.

When I got home, the task of "finishing the pantry" was completely beyond me, and I pretty much zoned the rest of the evening. Whenever I skimp on sleep these days, it catches up to me sooner rather than later.

When I realized how tired I was, I sat down with the boys to make grand plans for the next day, then we all headed to bed.

After school, Critter
bundled up, walkabout, snow

Saturday

My grand list had both finishing the pantry (and cleaning the kitchen) AND cleaning the bedroom on it. I'm often quite adept at cleaning when I'm avoiding something, and this time I ended up avoiding the pantry. :)

First, I stripped the bed and washed the sheets. The set on the bed was Flar's favorite, and I wanted them clean for Gaucha's visit.

I finished the job I had started weeks ago, on my side of the bed. I took everything out of my bookcase and cubbyholes and completely reorganized them. By the time I was done, I had some seldom-worn clothes in a higher shelf, some sentimentally important puzzles shelved in a higher shelf, all my purses and shoes organized, and had found actual shelf space for all of the books that had been piled all about my bedside table and bedside storage expansion unit (a stack of plastic shelves). Quite a bit that had been on the floor was cleared away in the process, so it didn't take much more to clear away the rest, and vacuum.

Meantime, the sheets were clean and Critter helped me to remake his bed, before I dropped him at T's house, and went to a 2pm munch with Ro and Knight. We met a fellow from Mt. Sterling who *may* drop by the PWP next weekend.

When I got back home, I had time to finish vacuuming the bedroom and closet and bathroom. I checked in with Flar before I stepped into the shower, and found out that they were close enough that I should plan on driving over to the airport as soon as I got out of the shower. I dragged Tigger along, and we picked up Critter on our way home from the airport. Flar and Gaucha had brought Pappasito's fajitas with them: Yum!

When we got home, I showed off my achievements in the bedroom, and Flar was impressed. I had wanted to make the bedroom welcoming for Gaucha, and I think I succeeded. While he toured Gaucha around the house, and then helped her to unpack, I set about clearing off one countertop in the kitchen, and making chicken and dumplings.

Ro and Knight came over to join us for dinner. We had a late, but yummy spread of food; after that, we were all pretty bushed. I read email a bit before bedding down upstairs -- to give Flar and Gaucha a proper night sleep together, after all of their traveling. On my way to the family room, I ducked my head into the bedroom, to check that Gaucha was out of the shower, so it was okay to start a load of laundry. She very sweetly invited me to sleep with them. I thanked her, declined for the first night, and for work nights, and left them to themselves.

Then I set about reading LJ and email, and I got to chat a bit with Wolf and Sydb and Ro. I read some of the Saturday paper before I succumbed to sleep.
bundled up, walkabout, snow

Sunday was not a day of rest

But, we did get to sleep in, in the morning. Too long for me -- I have more allergy problems sleeping in the Lincoln Room, than I do in our room, and sleeping in exacerbated them.

I had pulled myself out of bed and started to finish the Saturday paper, while waiting for my head to drain, when Flar and Gaucha bounced in. They had already eaten, had let me sleep in, and were offering to fix me breakfast now, if I wanted to get up.

I had cereal and scrambled eggs, and started in on finishing the pantry after that. We all worked on it: Flar and Gaucha and both boys. Flar started by mounting hooks for me to hang my various and sundry bags, including the backpack I take to work. I wanted him to operate the evil drill -- the trigger is broken so that it stays on when it has power. I got Critter to start helping me with the baskets. The baskets had varying levels of mouse-spoor, which meant the contents had to be taken out and cleaned (or thrown away, depending), and the baskets themselves cleaned, before reloading.

We got a system going where Critter and Flar cleaned the baskets, while I decided where to put things in the pantry. When Flar was cooking my eggs, I had washed out some mouse-messy stuff destined for the pantry, and while I was eating, Gaucha took over, by washing hand-wash that had gathered up. She washed one of the pantry baskets, and asked if she could clean around the sink, instead.

I kind of understand the whole "more comfortable working than watching" and "working together is a comfortable way to be with someone not quite familiar yet" stuff. But even after all of Flar's previous descriptions, I was not prepared for how diligently and thoroughly Gaucha cleaned. While I was working on getting the last of the baskets in the pantry, she was methodically taking up all the clutter in the kitchen in order to clean.

Which means that when we got to the point where I thought I'd be done, after everything that belonged in the pantry was placed, we had a whole new cleaning job: sorting through the clutter to keep or throw and decided where things went. By this time, the boys were very tired, it was late and time for us to have dinner.

Ooh, look at me totally blocking lunch with Bébé and his girlfriend. We didn't get deeply involved in pantry cleaning until after lunch. We met Bébé and his girlfriend at Tony Roma's for lunch. Bébé was in rare form, rubbing me the wrong way. I don't like him; he can be a jerk in so many ways, but the worst is how he acts, when he is around attractive, younger women. Enough said.

But, back to the cleaning. I had this mini-meltdown when faced with the magnitude of how much was left, and the necessity for a dinner break. Flar promised that we would finish when we got home, and that I wouldn't be making all the decisions, as my decision server was suffering from overload by then. We all went out to Pizza Hut, to show Gaucha what American pizza is like.

After dinner, Flar was true to his word, and we really did get everything put back before bedtime.

After that, Flar, Gaucha and I soaked in the jacuzzi and then went to bed.

Perhaps it was so much agitation from cleaning. Perhaps it was being all snuggled up to unfamiliar yummy and oh by the way, technically wife... After lights out, I couldn't sleep. Wanted sex, couldn't ask for it, could ignore wanting, couldn't be calmed by cuddling, couldn't find a comfortable position in which to sleep, felt awkward, and basically couldn't sleep. Oh, I did, eventually. Critter woke me 15 minutes before the alarm was set to sound.
bundled up, walkabout, snow

Monday

This morning, I got up and fixed breakfast for Critter and Tigger and myself. Flar always eats later in the morning, and Gaucha was sleeping in.

Gaucha wasn't quite as frantic about cleaning today, although I did ask her, after she got back from Rotary with Flar, to help me finish up the kitchen, since she had gotten so much of it done yesterday.

Blurring details, by the end of the day, we have cleaned out all of the kitchen cabinets, and reorganized the contents. I put away the cookie cutters in an organized fashion in one of the baskets in the pantry, using ziplock bags to sort out categories of shapes. There is no trace of mouse spoor in any of the cabinets, nor boiled honey. The back of the sink, in the bay window, looks gorgeous. The swinging frogs are swinging. I've done three loads of towels, whites, colors, perm. press and some delicates since I washed sheets on Saturday, and have more "work towel" sorts of load to do.

Tonight for dinner, we took Guacha and met Ro and Knight at the Taste of Lexington, which features downtown area restaurants. It meant that Gaucha could get a varied taste without having to go out to all those places. ;) We dressed up for dinner tonight -- me, because it's hot and skirts are cooler than pants, Gaucha, because she has so many dressy outfits. Tonight, she wore leather. yummy.

After dinner, I went to work. Starting at 7:30, I was done by a little after midnight. I had surprise company, since Details hasn't been working Mondays, lately. AND, Wolf called. :)

As part of my review, Opman has asked me to write notes when there are questions unresolved by the new Run Book, so he can improve the Run Book. Great idea, if he follows through. ;) Anyway, one of the questions I had last Thursday turned up some bad prep by the client, and Opman is going to meet with them about that. He left me a note to tell me about it, and thanked me "for the heads up."

Details confuses me. She's been complaining for months about Opman never checking back with the client, and now that he is, she only focussed on the note-writing, as if I'm playing up to Opman. I like to think of it more as playing him, period. He's doing more managerly stuff this way, and hey, I don't mind more communication. Ah well.

That was my day in a nutshell. The kitchen and pantry are now amazing paragons of organization and cleanliness, and I've been able to start in on doing some hostess emailing.

Tomorrow, Flar is bringing Gaucha to talk to Tigger's class as school, and I've decided to sleep in, until they're back. After that, Gaucha and I will be running the normal Tuesday errands.

Ro and I are planning to work on the silkscreen tomorrow night, and then I get a bubblebath and phone call with Wolf.

Now for a little bedtime reading...