A Long Weekend

Weekends can seem long, or they can be long.  It kind of depends on how the kids are behaving, and how much you preplanned to get done during the days.

We didn’t plan a lot for this weekend and the kids seem to be behaving, so this long weekend is both long and a weekend.  It also gives me a minute to get caught up on goings on.

We live on a nice little cul-de-sac in Seattle suburbia, and last night we had a neighborhood Mexican Fiesta.  Nothing says 4th of July like tacos and burritos and Spanish Rice.  After the food came the fireworks.  The kids loved them.  I’m a little split still on the whole fireworks thing.  I think it’s a gigantic waste of money.  But I think aliens cruising over our town last night looking for a good place to set down and commence eating our brains would have decided to move on, thinking, “The little ones here spout fire from their finger tips and the big ones all have artillery in their back yard.  Their armies must be powerful indeed.  Let’s go somewhere easier, like the Middle East.”

The thermometer said it was 65 here yesterday, but that’s a lie.  It was brutally cold for July (now called Julyuary).  The wind was howling, and by the end, people were bringing out their winter coats, mittens and Snuggies to keep warm.

All that fresh air did me in, and I forced everyone in our house inside at 10:00 and I was asleep by 10:15, with fireworks still going on around us.

I’ll try to get some pictures uploaded today, but we’ve been having technical difficulties with my all in one printer lately, so no idea if this will actually happen.

On our docket for today is to go and buy new beds for the kids.  They’re outgrowing their toddler beds, and it’s time to get them big boy and big girl beds in the hopes that they will spend more time in them, especially in the evening, when bedtime is still too much of a fight.

Of course, the likelihood is that the beds won’t fit in their room, and we’ll have to switch them to the guest bed room which is larger, but not painted kid friendly colors, nor does it have the custom closet setup we installed in the kids room before they were born.  So I see that buying a couple of beds is going to lead to a lot more expenses in the near future.

The biggest change coming in the next few weeks will be the kids starting full day pre-school at a local Montessori school. For the last three years, we’ve had a fantastic nanny caring for our kids while Lisa and I work, but the time has come to challenge them a little more intellectually, and try to tire their very active brains out (again in the hope that tired brains lead to better sleep at night).  This switch is going to lead to a lot of other changes for us like figuring out how to pack lunches for them, how to get them out the door by 8:00 every morning, and how to make sure I leave the office on time every day to pick them up after work.  But that was all going to happen at some point, and it might as well be now.

We haven’t watched many movies lately.  Just one that I recall – ‘The Pentagon Papers” about all the skullduggery and lying that went on regarding Vietnam in the 50s, 60s and 70s.  I highly recommend this movie, and I can’t wait to see the sequel – ‘The Pentagon Papers 2’, about all the skullduggery and lying that went on during the 80’s, 90’s, 00’s and 10’s about Iraq and Afghanistan.  We’ll probably have to wait until 2040 to see that though.

I’ve read just one book in the last few weeks as well – ‘Steampunk’ – an anthology of Steampunk stories edited by Ann and Jeff Vandermeer.  I decided to pick this up to better understand this genre, since I’ve never really spent much time with it.  Results were mixed.  Of the 14 stories in it, I really liked three.  Three or four more were good, and the rest ranged between interesting but not readable, to pretentious crap.  Only my OCD forced me to read the whole thing, and I’d be hard pressed to recommend it on whole to anyone.  I think it probably turned me off reading the genre much further, though a couple of the stories had enough there to make me want to read more of that author’s work.  Specifically, I liked

  • “Benediction:  Excerpt from The Warlord of the Air” by Michael Moorcock
  • “Lord Kelvin’s Machine” by James P. Blaylock
  • “Victoria” by Paul D. Filippo

As I said in my last blog, I’ve been blocked a little in my writing with a section that just doesn’t belong.  I’m in the process of ripping it out, but that’s leading to some other, more subtle plot changes, and that’s taking a while to get done.  I was hoping to wrap it up this weekend, but now I’m hoping for the end of this week.  Then I have to put the book down for a bit and go back to reread ‘The Forgotten Road’, and finish my prep for the PNWA Conference in three weeks.  July is a pretty busy month.

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