So Far, So Good

I am pleased to report that we have reached the first weekend of our summer break.

Meredith has read over 500 pages this week, and has decided to devote her summer to reading the Mark Twain 2012-2013 Final Nominees.

Best Summer Ever

Harper has been focusing her energy on the Newsboys Strike of 1899. We’ve heard a rumor that William Randolph Hearst is a distant relative, and Harper is all fired up. (Like me, she now has the entire Newsies soundtrack memorized. This makes our car rides 94% more entertaining.)

Last week I won a bottle of barbecue sauce from the produce co-op. This morning I won some tea from Teavana. I made some vegan cookies, I’ve been to Gokul twice in the past week, and my basil is ready to be cut and placed upon a plate with mozzarella and tomatoes. (I measure my successes culinarily.)

I’m currently reading Ten Thousand Saints.

A pair of green tights arrived in the mail this afternoon.

My Acer Cardigan has reached the halfway point.

Functional Mustard

I do believe I have another stress fracture in my leg. (I’ve been walking in the mornings.) BUT, let’s not talk about that. (I’m registered for a 5K in August. Sink or swim.) ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Blowing through the jasmine in my mind…

For whatever reason, it seems that I’ve been cleaning the house. So far, I’ve washed and organized 94% of the kitchen, I’ve scrubbed bathroom sinks and showers, I’ve organized 17% of the family room, and I’ve purchased a small vapor cleaner thing that will supposedly shoot all of that black gunk out of the shower in the master bathroom.

My goal is to get the house in shape this summer so that when the girls start school in August, I can apply my faux pearl necklace and sing things like, “Oh! It’s Tuesday! Time to vacuum the floors before I hit my freelance.” If I can break the work down into daily manageable tasks, my life will surely be sunnier and my hair will shine, and perhaps I’ll lose the final few pounds that simply must go before my happy pants fit again.

Anyway, later this afternoon I’ll be attacking my bookshelf, and that’s sort of exciting because during Bookshelf Cleaning Day, all books get to line up on the floor and grapple for potential positioning on the top shelf. Current top shelf selections include To Kill a Mockingbird, Letters of E.B. White, The Franchiser, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, and Remembering Denny. Currently competing for a top shelf position are the Shirley Jackson books recently gifted to me by Tempe, The Importance of Being Earnest, and The Elegance of the Hedgehog. (My book club is meeting over sushi on Thursday to discuss The Elegance of the Hedgehog, and I’m currently within five pages of finishing.)

By the way, yes! I’ve decided to go vegetarian again on July 1. This means I currently have three more days in which to eat meat. Last night I had Trader Joe’s Mandarin Orange Chicken, which is my absolute favorite chicken meal. Tonight we’ll be having a pesto pizza, and that’s insane because Only Three More Days To Go and I’m eating a meatless dinner?! I can’t even begin to think about tomorrow’s dinner because I’m getting my very first facial at 6:45 in the evening, and oddly enough, it will involve removing my shirt. This was a gift for my birthday, and it couldn’t be more perfect because Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “Every day do something that frightens you.” SO, not only will this gift exfoliate, moisturize, and fortify my skin—it will also make me a bit more Rooseveltian. (Important Clarification: I will not become a Republican, although I have eaten with many of them, and some are quite delightful.)

In less than two weeks, I’ll be traveling to Memphis for a weekend of debauchery. (Although my definition of that word has relaxed considerably in the past 20 years, current usage does include a trip to Graceland, some yarn store browsing, and a search for vegetarian barbecue. (I will, of course, settle for sweet tea and a baked sweet potato. I will not be one of those vegetarians who ruin it for everyone else.))

I shall now leave the house to buy muffins. Enjoy your day. ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

I like to think I was born to run, but I’ll take what I can get.

Last week I took the girls to my folks’ house to spend the day with my twelve-year-old nephew who was in town for the week. Justin, my nephew, is one of those kids who can pick up a video game he has never played before and pwn it. (Suddenly, instead of actually gaining worldly-wise points by using “pwn” I believe I’ve just morphed into your dead Aunt Gladys who used to smile through gloppy smeared lipstick and ask, “So, are you sweet on anyone? Hhmmm???”) Anyway, the game of the day was Mario Kart for the Wii, and before I could throw my keys onto the couch, I was challenged to a race. And although only two of us were racing, I actually came in sixth. (I’m still not completely clear on how that happened.)

MC: Mommy, sometimes I think you were born to lose.

Later that afternoon as I lost my balance and fell down while trying to rotate the lazy susan, I was once again told that I was born to lose. A few hours later, when I asked the girls to put their shoes on because it was time to go to the bathroom (I meant time to go home. Sometimes I wonder what life would be like if you could actually feel parts of your brain infarct. I’m imagining it’s not unlike Pop Rocks just inside the back of your skull.), it came up again. “You really WERE born to lose! Ha Ha HA HA HA HA!!!” And even at 39, when you’re told over and over (and over) again that you were born to lose, well, it begins to affect your mood. Maybe they’re right. No, they’re not right. Maybe they are. No. Maybe.

Later that evening, Jeff took the girls to the YMCA to swim, and I drove to the nearest bookstore to pick up a copy of Infinite Jest. Yes. I am one of the many who have ambitious plans to participate in Infinite Summer, and although many may believe I was born to lose, this is something for which I am fully determined to pass muster. (I recently learned that it’s Muster and not Mustard. Apparently, you can cut the mustard, but you must pass muster. Four synapses just began firing again, and it feels like butter melting behind my ears.)

As soon as I can figure out how, I’m going to add some sort of progress update to my sidebar (below the ad thing, of course, because I’m wearing a XXL “Plays by the Rules” jacket) so I feel a pinch of accountability. Please feel free to update me on your progress, as well. Even if your progress has nothing to do with anything I’ve mentioned to you today.

Speaking of improvisational dancing, my final Sports Active update is up. If you go here and then click on the line of text right above the photo, you’ll be directed to a super secret location where you may cast a voyeuristic peeper upon me in a skirted swimsuit. This is a once in a lifetime experience, internet friends. Born to lose, indeed. ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>