First B&B of the Season a Success

This occasion warranted a rare selfie of the (self-appointed) Presider Over Beer bringing this event to order!  I even made an amusing attempt at badminton (fortunately not pictured).  It was a perfect cool spring day, which naturally led to roasting things over a fire.  Lots of friends of all ages and persuasions showed up in waves throughout the day.  E made wonderful banana oat cookies.  I had spent the night, so I could get up and help set up.  I stayed until evening, then walked home, exhausted.

Just to back up a little, I spent erev preparing for both Shabbat (the last challah for the week), and Pesach.  It’s not as complicated when your family circumstances necessitate keeping to the spirit, not the letter!  The “Raging Sages” might turn over in their dusty graves, but our reality tends to keep things simple and prioritized.  Just the constant war on hametz (i.e. all the non-Pesach food debris left behind by four savages) keeps me busy!  But we will have the basic essentials, including my formerly undefeated charoset (sportingly conceded to “Uncle” Robert.)

I leave you with some peculiar clouds after the last “tornadic” storm.

 

 

Spring in Full Swing

I spend some time every day at Avdi’s, though I took a short “break” to have the next step of perio implants open-mouth surgery .  The final stage is coming up soon!  I’ll be much poorer but much happier.

Most of my garden work right now is maintenance and occasionally adding new transplants as it gets warmer.  And of course there’s always housework to do.  And Pesach preps to start.  Avdi’s work and life continue to be extremely exhausting and frustrating, so I try to find more ways to help, or at least not make it worse.

Yesterday evening we had an impromptu dinner (beef and choice of fresh veggies) cooked over a fire (by Y), with varying degrees of success/crispy cinders!  K mowed the lawn for the first time this year, in preparation for our first official B&B on Saturday.  I lingered hanging out on the patio with drinks, then walked home before it got too dark.

 

 

 

Escape Attempt a Success

The overnight while A&J drove to Indianapolis and back went smoothly and without a hitch.  No meltdowns, just everyone getting along and self-regulating.  Lots of gardening got done, including planting asparagus, adding herb transplants, starting E&Y’s raised beds, and extreme hoeing.  I didn’t even notice when A&J got home, I was so absorbed in discussing Y’s garden with them.  Avdi seemed very reprieved.

 

Negronis on the Patio

Another erev Shabbat accomplished.  It was a perfect spring day.  Avdi and Jess worked in the office, while I worked on homey stuff.  The challot came out spectacularly fluffy.  A and I got to drink negronis out on the patio.

S was having a particularly extreme meltdown, probably from being overtired.  Some of the tactics suggested by his autism specialist do seem to help a little.

I walked home in the beautiful spring evening, but will return tomorrow to spend the night so A&J can go to a concert in Indiana.

 

Sorting Drugs and Disorders

I had some good news at my oncologist–my lab work counts are looking fairly stable and not too off the charts, so I must be doing something right, or at least my leukemia is being lenient to me, so I guess I get to stick around some more.

I spent the night over at A’s, so I could sit in on a morning home meeting with S’s autism specialist, who provides education and strategies for caregivers.  I find these sessions very enlightening.  She also informs us of additional services that S may qualify for.

The rest of the day I did some sorting jobs for A–sorting and organizing kids’ meds, teas, the fridge contents, etc.–plus the usual housework.  Avdi was able to get out to MoBot to work and clear his head a little.

“After” more work at home, he even had a few minutes to share a drink and update me a little, and check out my projects in the garden.  He’s so distracted with work and worries that we rarely have a chance to even communicate.  But he says just my presence helps him feel not as alone.

 

City Seoul Taco

Today I walked over to A’s and worked on the garden.  I finished laying a brick path down the middle of the herb garden.  I cleared and leaf-mulched the area for edible perennials (strawberries, prickly pear, horseradish, and soon, asparagus).  I cleaned up Percy’s grave and the path to it.  I watered the garden.  I also did some housework.  Y told me all about the total eclipse viewing.

Later, we all (except E) went to Seoul Taco at the Loop in U-City.  It was great food in a fun atmosphere.

 

The Darkness at 2PM

Eerie and uncanny only begins to describe even a partial totality.  My phone camera kept trying to compensate for the unnatural darkness, and editing didn’t help much.  I was trying for an angle through my dirty porch window that didn’t quite include the sun, for obvious reasons.  It looked like when an evening storm is threatening but the sun is illuminating the trees against the dark sky.  The service station lights came on automatically.  Then the sunny day resumed.  I can only imagine what the total eclipse was like.

Stellar!

Yesterday was a beautiful spring day for walking to A’s and gardening.  I transplanted the hardened-off cilantro to the herb garden and lettuces/greens to the veg garden, then cultivated between all the rows, and watered everything in.  Of course right after that it poured for like 45 minutes, just to make sure everything was watered enough.

Everyone was busy getting stuff done, playing, running errands, or getting ready for tomorrow’s eclipse field trip.  It was charcuterie Sunday, wherein we all gather round to eat and meet about household planning, with varying degrees of engagement and amusement.  Eventually it all gets sorted, even the unclaimed vagrant socks.

Today I’m “home” doing homey stuff while the others travel south to one of the totality site events in MO, at a park where astronomers and science types will be setting up.  I’m glad the kids will get to experience this rare occurrence firsthand.

 

 

 

Eclipsed, or, The Outshining

Most of my days now consist of walking to and from Avdi’s to perform garden and household maintenance routines.  I think I have finally attained “fixture” status.  The kids and I get along, and S keeps saying “I love it when you come over.”  Avdi even seems disappointed if I don’t just hang out while he’s too busy working to even say hi.  So I’ve gotten more comfortable just being there.  And there’s never any lack of things to help with.

Since I spend more time there than at my apartment, I actually have too much food to eat myself, even after asking Food Outreach to cut back on my monthly allotment, so I’m able to contribute food to the Avdi’s (and myself, since I eat there a lot).  This way I feel like I’m giving back something for all the many ways they give to me.  Hopefully the garden will take off and provide lots of supplements.

You know I have to throw in some obligatory eclipse metaphor, it being the day before a very historical total eclipse of the sun.  I undoubtably won’t live until the next one.  Avdi and the kids will be traveling to view it (with the appropriate gear).  I’ve seen more eclipses in my life than they, so I chose to sit it out.

Here comes the metaphor: aging makes me very aware of being eclipsed [SWIDT] by the next generations, which is as it should be, but still scary.  So I’m trying to live my limited days left prioritizing time with them, which I neglected for so long, so I can be a part of their transitions/rotations/revolutions…ok, end of metaphor.

 

 

Meteor-illogical

The weather here is so confused–one day it’s summer, the next it’s winter.  I guess if you average it out, it’s spring?

Anyway, it was so cold I had to skip a day of walking to Avdi’s, then made up for it yesterday.  All the little green babies are coming up downstairs, though the outdoor ones are taking their time–they’re also confused.  I did the usual routine, then just hung out.  Avdi has been hard at work and frustrated a lot.  S seems to really like his new school and bus.

Today I’ll walk over again (bundled up in several layers) and do erev preps.