Thursday, July 29, 2010

To Calendar: When two or more people get together to discuss and coordinate upcoming activities

Before I left for work this morning, I tossed a family-pack of pork chops in the fridge to defrost. So when I stopped by Gaye's house on the way home, I invited her to have dinner with us. She bought us our new propane Grill after the last one rusted out to the point that the bottom literally fell out. So I wanted her to have the opportunity to appreciate what the grill can do (it heats much more evenly than the old one, and it's also much easier to clean the grate). She accepted, so Chris and I ran home with Ben (Milo stayed behind to help feed the cats) to pick up the living room and run the vaccuum once. Then we all ate dinner.

After dinner Chris ran Coco back to his home (he'd been over having a playdate with Emily all day) and Gaye and I got to talking about all the stuff coming up in August and next thing you know, I'd printed out two copies of the month of August and we were sketching out when she'd babysit, when Max would babysit, and exactly what Max's Shakespeare rehearsals and performances look like. (Did I mention that we got the most wonderful thank-you note from one of the summer drama academy organizers? It praised Max as a wonderful young man, and I just can't get enough of that kind of thing.) By the time Chris got back, we'd figured out the first week and the last full week of August.

Then Chris sat down with HIS computer and we brought HIM up to speed. Somewhere in there I got out my computer and looked up the Nittany Valley Shakespeare Festival in order to check on the locations of the performances--they're all over the place, depending on the day--and in the process discovered an additional performance and some variations in the times from the schedule I originally was given. So that was all good. We wrote down the new information and discovered, for example, that Chris was already going to be in Baltimore the day that the twins come home from California, so I'll drive from Indiana to State College the previous day and let him pick up the twins from the airport. This is good news for me, even if it means I have to wait an additional 3 to 4 hours to see them that day.

In the end, we spent about an hour coordinating child care and child activities and who is driving where and when (e.g., Grandma will probably end up picking up the twins at the end of their school days on the first few days of school, since Extended Day doesn't usually start until the second week of school. But I'm getting ahead of myself. That's September for us.) and I felt MUCH better about the whole month by the time we were done, because now we're all on the same page, and it's all down on paper and the kids will get to their activities and have another full and wonderful month of summer.


I'm trying to lose weight by eating less and tracking what I eat so that the calories fall within the guidelines that helped me lose so much weight over the course of two years before. I regained it when taking a medicine that isn't supposed to cause weight-gain, but totally did with me. I had kept the weight off for a little over a year prior to that. About 15 months. After I hit my previous (non pregnancy) high weight, I went off the med, and have hovered around that number ever since. It was hard to find myself back at that weight and therefore hard to find the determination to lose it. I concentrated on school instead.

But I've been nudging myself back in that direction and I think my head is in the right place to make some progress. I'll lose the weight again, all of it, just the same way I did before. It will probably take me about the same amount of time as it did before, although I might be able to shave off 6 to 9 months because I don't intend to move across the country in the middle of it this time.

And now I am off to knit, knit like the wind, for it's only one month till the Grange fair, and I have many repeats of lace left to go.

(But omigosh, what a summer it has been for the garden. This is the first summer, ever, that I can remember the hot peppers being ripe in July. Usually the first jalapenos come in around mid-August, and everything else in late August. It's not unusual for me to have to buy hot peppers for the first batch of salsa, because not enough of the rest are ripe.

But this summer I already have two different kinds of peppers starting to produce huge, ripe hot peppers. The sweet peppers are turning orange. They'll be ready to be picked before I go to Indiana. The three pickling cucumber plants are producing 8 to 12 ripe cucumbers a week right now. I was planning one more batch of relish--a dill relish--after that I'm not sure what to do. I haven't tried the Ball Canning Dill pickle recipe and I'm not sure what kind of pickles they produce. Are they any good? I don't know, so I was only going to can a few batches on a trial basis this summer--but I can see that the vines will keep producing for a few more weeks and I have to do something with all those cucumbers.

The tomatoes are starting to ripen. I can't really remember when my tomatoes usually come in. I usually have more plants and then I have a variety of middle and late season tomatoes. This spring I didn't grow plants from seeds, I just grabbed a few pots from Lowe's. So I haven't even checked when they're supposed to come in. But the cherry tomatoes and grape tomatoes have produced two lunches worth of ripe tomatoes and the first Big Boy is turning red. Neither of the beefsteak tomato varieties are producing a lot of fruit. They're more lush and green and healthy, than some previous year, but not especially abundant. I hear that can happen when the plant isn't at all stressed--plenty of good soil and rain? The plant isn't so worried about producing seeds to replicate itself.

And now I really am off to knit a few rows before turning in.)

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