Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Vacation catchup.

Hi! We're back. We have actually been back since Saturday, but I haven't had dsl service at all till just now. We had a lovely time in Portland. Staying at my sis's house was a great idea. They made us feel quite welcome with towels laid out over clean sinks, the remote controls, all five of them, labeled with operating instructions, etc. The kids watched way too much poor quality television, but we grownups had fun. We listened to music, watched a movie, cooked and ate, and read.

We also finally made it to Powell's Portland store on Thursday - the biggest of 5 Portland stores, if you can believe it, and then 5 wearhouses to boot! It was 5 stories of new and used books. We bought several new kids books, and a couple of history titles for Papa. I didn't get the one book that caught my eye- Quilting with Japanese Fabrics. Not sure why. I was actually disapointed in the books in the education section. After checking out the huge homeschooling section on the website, I expected to find more to interest me than I did.

After four hours in the store, where some of us sat and read, some researched new titles, and some of us wandered and explored the entire 5 stories of the building, (going from one familiar face to another, declaring his immediate famishing starvation) we decided to move on. We didn't even overspend.

In order to head off teenage starvation, the Boy actually asked the parking attendant where good food could be had, and navigated the streets of Portland (okay, so he only had to go around the block) to find Henry's Tavern. The food was great, the waitress very nice to the kids, and it was fun to eat in a fancy restaurant. And bonus- next door to the restaurant was a Whole Foods store, where we found desert choices for all of us, including Baklava, complete with dripping honey, and allergy-safe coconut macaroons.

On Friday, Papa left early in my sis's Miata to navigate his way to his Cytometry meeting. I slept in till a luxurious 8:30 am, showered and started breakfast, then got the kids up and told them to do a quick tidy so the house would be clean for their Aunt and Uncle. I noticed the Boy was whiny and didn't look good. Turns out he read way to late, and ended up sleeping with the light on, and felt like it. I sent him back to bed, and enjoyed some time with the Girl, watching her play the piano that belonged to her paternal Great, Great Grandmother, brushing her hair, and reading side by side on the couch. Then I napped while she piano-ed some more. It was great that my sis got home later than we had planned- the nap was great for both the Boy and the Mama.

The afternoon was laid back and relaxing. My brother in law and I simultaneously cruised the internet on our laptops, while I made morrocan chicken stew. I filled a favorites folder for him while I was there- all classical, latin centered stuff. Funny- this man just got his teaching degree, and has barely heard about the classical education model. Sad. Very sad. I have been trying to get him to read The Well-Trained Mind (at the very minimum) for the 3 yrs I have known him. He keeps asking me how he is supposed to read this stuff. I showed him my current books of study, and it seemed to really scare him. Hmmm.

Back to Friday afternoon- my sister's daughter and her two kids came over in the evening and had supper with us. It was fun to visit and the cousins enjoyed seeing each other again. Papa got home about 8 pm, and over a glass of wine in the quiet living room, he told me about his day, and how he was not going back on Saturday, as most of the meeting was by the venders. Salesman smoozing. Not as important as scientist smoozing. Which meant he could come with us on Sat.

On Sat, my sis had to work, so Papa, the kids and I all followed Uncle J's car into Portland again, to visit the OMSI. We had a great time, except for the moment in the snack bar where I was trying to find ANYTHING healthy to buy the starving teens (who had left the nuts in the car), and one of them was lobbying for a pretzel, and Uncle J was trying to make suggestions, and Papa had walked back to the table, and I realized it has been hard for me to function in crowds lately. We pulled it out and had a great time. The kids enjoyed it as much as the last time we were at OMSI, also with Uncle J.

From there, we headed onto I-5, and home. The kitties did fine while we were gone, and even acted like they missed us.

And here it is, a week later, and I am almost caught up with the laundry, and I actually unpacked the suitcases yesterday.
LB

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