Slideshow of Landscaping Project

by Nick on Jun 29, 2010

Cirque du Soleil Alegria = Joy (No, it literally means joy in Spanish)

by Nick

Three weekends ago we had eight visitors. That is my parents, their two dogs, my sister, brother in law, and two more dogs.  This was also in the quasi-middle of out bathroom-mold-shenanigans.  We had one shower and toilet between us.  It was a hoot, no, a hoot and a half.

For this visit each couple picked a night and cooked a meal.  My parents made a dish called a "Low Country Boil;" which was a Louisiana style soups with shrimp, sausage, carrots, corn on-the-cob, and a bunch of other deliciousness.  Maggie and Leni made some kebabs.  Which again included shrimp.  Shrimp is a rarely eaten at The General, and I particularly enjoyed having it twice.  Claire and I made portabella burgers. Doing meals this way made the weekend relaxing and fun.

One of the major highlights of the visit was going to a Cirque du Soleil performance called "Alegria."  It was the most amazing stage performance I have ever seen.  I constantly found my mouth open, and heart skipping a beat in fear and excitement.  Maggie had a good post over at Snack for Later about the weekend, and more details about Cirque du Soleil.  Thanks Mom and Dad for treating us to the show.

Here are a few other highlights from the weekend:
  • Going to a movie (a rare treat for us)
  • Playing board games (including one in which my father pantomimed the word "dump")
  • Shopping for landscaping rock with my parents
  • Watching the dogs play/interact/not interact with each other.
  • Going to Saint Michael and All angels with my whole family.

Sun Tea

by Nick on Jun 19, 2010

While working on our landscaping project I took a picture of our tea brewing in the Sun's oppressive rays.

Summer Mold

by Claire on Jun 3, 2010

As it has been far too long since we posted, I'll stick to the generic list of highlights. (Pictures are at the bottom of this post. I would recommend saving them for the end as a reward for yourself if you make it through the novella below.)

1. The school year is officially over. For Nick, this means the end of his Space Museum project boasting 50+ group projects consisting of painted styrofoam balls and duct-taped cardboard. For me, this was the end of a 10-week Holocaust unit with my eighth graders; I must say, I was generally impressed by their maturity.

2. We found we will survive the APS budget crisis with our jobs intact. Nick will have the EXACT same position next year (l u c k y) and I will be teaching social studies to 6th graders as well as a math elective.  (Apparently this will be a course to show the fun angle of math, or at least the acutely intriguing angle. Think tangrams, logic puzzles, card games, and lots of hands-on stuff. If you would like to add your favorite math memories to this list, I would be grateful!) I am both daunted and thrilled by this new position, though I think I will miss the eighth graders.

3. My family (mom, dad, and sister) all came out to work on wedding is going to be gorgeous! You will not persuade me to give away any of the details here, I'm afraid.

4. While we have been reading for pleasure like no other, we are slightly intimidated by the fact that The General is slowly dying on the inside and taking all of our savings to the grave. Actually, I am being slightly sarcastic. Last month, we discovered dripping inside the wall of the master bath. This month a plumber came and fixed it; luckily there wasn't any mold and it was a relatively easy repair. While we were waiting for that shower to be mended, we used the hall bath. Then we decided to paint the hall bath. As I was lining the baseboard with blue tape, I noticed a little air bubble in the wall. I pushed it; it moved. I peeled off the paint only to find three square feet of soaking wet drywall. A little chipping at it with a screwdriver revealed multiple layers of different colored paint and plaster. Evidently there is a leak in this wall as well, that could be as old as the house (60 years). We were told that the best case scenario is removing a couple of tiles and fixing the leak. The worst case scenario is tearing out the kitchen cabinets and the bathroom and re-building the studs of the wall. It all depends on the quantity of mold within the wall. The plumber will be here tomorrow. Then we will know the verdict.... build walls or xeriscape? Until then, ignorance is bliss, I suppose.

5. When we lived in the Puget Sound, we found an old lobster float on the beach. It is a little like a light-weight bowling ball. After Dottie popped her beloved soccer ball, we gave her the more durable float. She has been enjoying conquering it in the backyard. 

Pictures below: 
1. Dottie digging out our planter, with the onlooking support of her "cousin" Sierra. 
2. Mystery $$$$$ mold in hall bath.
3. The hole in the wall to fix the shower in the master bath. 
4. The repaired shower pipe.