Saturday, October 13, 2007

Marion, Massachusetts

Today we settled into life here. It’s so fun playing with the kids and getting caught up on their lives. Seth, the younger brother, especially seems to have grown. He’s on the verge of reading now, able to write his name and two other words (“cat” and “dot”) and can pick out letters in any books. He pulled out our card from last year (we gave him our beat-up old truck as a going-away present) and spelled out the letters for me. I can’t believe how much taller and older he seems.

Jacob, the older brother, has matured, too. He’s the one who loves Yu-Gi-Oh and we spent a couple of hours tonight poring over the online interactive demo of how to play the game. He’s been collecting cards for years but we’ve never figured out how to actually play, and I feel like he might finally be ready for it. Of course, my ulterior motive is that I love games. I don’t just play dominoes for grins and giggles, after all.

I had a blast tonight taking over the kitchen at Karl’s brother’s and making a huge pot of crock-pot chili and a giant salad with homemade dressing. I went to the grocery store for the first time and spent thirty dollars almost exclusively on fresh produce: red grapes, a giant head of romaine lettuce, beautiful tomatoes and peppers and alfalfa sprouts. They may be farmed with pesticides and shipped zillions of miles, but modern American produce is one of the world’s wonders. I hadn’t realized how much I had missed just being able to jaunt into the grocery store and picked up what I need for dinner. It was fabulous.

I loved having the boys help me too. I told Jacob that he was making the chili and I was just going to chop up the veggies for him--he added the beef and the beans and tomatoes and a magic spice blend he put together from the spice cabinet and fresh-picked jalapeno and serrano peppers from the garden. Then Seth helped us make a fresh dressing for the salad with rosemary from the garden and balsamic vinegar and pepper juice. The boys loved it. Maybe I’m having a little twinge of maternal instinct, here and there...

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