at this point, you might be wondering why on earth brian would be putting crap cakes in the ice box. he's decided he has a gluten intolerance or celiac disease or something and has decided to put a load in the mail to have it tested. i have yet to ascertain why we are not acting like normal people and driving down to the doctor's office for a blood test. he has informed me he will not be partaking of my seitan-sponsored dinners for the next month, but to not go out of my way for him. great. can't wait to eat nearly that entire pot of three bean chili all on my own. you want to see digestive issues? well, put on your hat, mister.
it was a pretty glorious weekend down here in hell-weather town. the climatic fever finally broke recently and it's been doing confusing things like having highs in the 70s or lower 80s. i've found myself wearing clothing that covers my armpits. and i had on a sweater during the warmest part of the day. i can take violet out of her car seat and she's not soaked in any sweat AT ALL.
friday, i felt like i might be dying of some unidentifiable lethal disease, maybe celiac, so brian came home and worked here for the afternoon and picked up oliver and had us eat dinner at 5pm (stroganoff!).
saturday, we tried to go to whole foods as a family, but oliver was dragging feet and losing tokens (did i mention that after three months, we finally set up his responsibility chart?) so i finally went with just violet. game time was at one and it was like being on the moon: a little warm in the sun, a little cool in the shade. i mainly chose the shade. oliver did a good job of jogging around on the soccer field in the general direction the ball was moving. we let the kids tear it up on the playground after.
that evening, we took it on down to the urban bazaar in bishop arts. i knew it wouldn't be the greatest event in the world, but it works as a good excuse to get outside and in the community. we searched for a restaurant with the winning combination of outdoor seating and beer serving, but wound up deleting the outdoor requirement from our list. the place we chose had a tree outside covered in white xmas lights and oliver chose precisely the one bulb to touch which had been broken in half and received a shock as his finger powered down that particular strand. i informed the hostess the tree had electrocuted our child and was pleased to see the guilty bulb still occupying its place in light bulb society upon our exit.
while inside, it was violet who was the ornery one for a change. it was getting late, so we concentrated on guzzling beers and slurping olives and spilling cereal on the floor. oliver was a little gentleman and delighted in setting up his own plate of assorted olives. he wasn't fond of the green ones. they were all a little salty for my taste, as traditional olives tend to be. i blame myself.
it was dark by the time we were heading back to the car and oliver pointed out how strange a thing this was for him. how bizarre to realize he's never out after dark during the warm days.
my work schedule was cleared that evening and brian and i actually sat down to play a couple of games of mancala. i whipped my own ass the first time and unwittingly whipped brian's ass the second and third times. then i passed out.
yesterday, we started off the day at world market looking for some kind of tiny halloween container to use for trick or treating. finding nothing, oliver and i went into a party store and he came upon a stand of novelty glasses and chose the ones that looked like two mugs of foamy beer and put them on and said, "look, mommy! cupcake glasses!" and it was a hoot.
as you can imagine, it was surprise after surprise for the four year old at the party store. i surreptitiously grabbed some curious george stickers, a pack of curious george napkins (as we'd had a blow out the day previous over his theft of some of my party napkins), and a pack of pencils with pictures of puppies on them for halloween.
we came around a corner and there were some spiderman balls, or something, on the shelf and oliver said, "look! balls with batman on them!" i delight in the fact that while other boys his age are flipping out over hot wheels and super heroes and pirates and skulls and whatever disney feels like selling them that day, my child will be excited to have a puppy dog pencil and a curious george napkin and something like a set of bowls (he'll have to wait for xmas!). he never begs us for candy and is thrilled when we remind him there are jelly beans and give him five. we're still trying to get him to finish the miniature chocolate rabbit he got for easter.
anyway. we also remembered to get one of those jack-o-lantern buckets for violet, considering as recently as last year, you know... well after violet's birth, it still hadn't occurred to me to procure two of them when i was scouting all over town at the last minute for one for oliver.
we popped into herb mart before heading home for lunch and then... it was off to the arboretum where we finally made the financial jump and renewed our membership. the weather was amazing and both the kids were nuts for the 40,000 pumpkins (not an exagerration). we passed the oktoberfest garten and were lucky enough to get a table. of the four available beers, only miller lite was available cold. we powered icy cold beer flavor through the vortex-necked bottles straight into our faces while the kids played with this heap of mustard packets left behind by a previous patron. it was fancy how i could just plop violet down on the table with mustard and a small gourd and she just sat there without trying to throw herself off the table for a long time.
after that, we made our way to the lawn and threw ourselves around in the grass and chased each other and swung oliver around by various combinations of limbs and i marveled how spinning in circles did not make me reverse-vortex my beer, even though i had to immediately throw myself completely on the grass after spinning to try and counteract the effects of centrifugal force. oliver found two little girls also rolling on the grass and decided to go on over to their families and hover while these moms were on their backs tossing the girls around. eventually, someone addressed the fact that their was a small child standing in their circle. i'm pleased he will be so brave as to decide to join strange children in play, but it kills me because half the time, kids won't give another kid the time of day. and sometimes it works out and he has a buddy for twenty or thirty minutes. so, he rolled around in the grass after them for a couple of minutes and we called him back over for the long trek back to the car. on the way out, we finally relented at a pumpkin stand and daddy let him pick out a tiny pumpkin to take home.
it was pizzas for dinner. two kinds of almond cheese on oliver's!
nearly identical to last year's oliver-sitting-on-a-giant-pumpkin-at-the-a
i guess they had workers strolling around and offering to take family photos, because the next thing i knew... there we were posing for one. in the incredibly brilliant sunlight. my face freaks me out in this one.
trying to figure out how on earth she was going to get that pumpkin back to the car.
poser. i was pretty excited to have both children up on a hay bale and holding pumpkins of their own volition. so i hedged on the fact violet was going to inevitably fall of the hay bale. it's okay. i caught her.
as you can see, children have a different idea of what one should do in a hay maze. daddy had run away with a case of the hay fever.
violet had this look on her face a good bit during our visit.
come up over the hill and it's an explosion of children rolling on hills. there was a jazzy trio playing music.
oliver enjoyed sitting on cement circles in the sea of grass. that lady was not with us.
the world's saddest-faced baby.
it was sort of bittersweet having all this grand fun on a special occasion when we could be people with a yard having grand fun every day. so i pretended we had just spent $100 on one of the best yards in dallas and made plans to find a way to move into the deGoyler house in the background.