Sunday, November 30, 2008

Holiday weekend

I have a love/hate relationship with holidays. They're great. You get to pretend you live the life of Riley. You don't have to brush your hair. You can look at those chores and keep on walking. You can hang out with friends like you did when you were in school. You can go to the movies or surf the 'net for stuff you don't really need to know. You don't have to shower.

But then comes the last day. The day that when it ends is the beginning of another work week. And suddenly it's all over. You're a grown-up again.

It could be worse. We might not have jobs to go to. And then when the next holiday came around we'd have no money to enjoy it. So no more moaning.

I am moaning a little bit, though. Yesterday Ali and I went to Climb Time with Tina and Lilly Noel to try our hand at rock climbing. It was a lot of fun, but at one point when I jumped down from my climb, I landed on my heels in between where the padding of two sections met. It's wood over concrete down there.

My poor heels. While they do carry my fat ass around all day, they don't generally have to bear all of my weight plus the force of it all coming down in a blur. I think I owe them a pedicure and maybe a day off from the pumpkin roll that somehow came home from Aunt Shirley's house.

(Bickel family update: It was a great time. Everyone seems happy and healthy. Chris and Cory Lehman (Beth's sons) are heartbreakers and way fun. Allyssa is on the swim team and has really cute scrunchy hair now. Julie and Diana actually behaved themselves (as far as I could tell) and everyone had a great time.)

We also had Jenna for a little while this weekend, which was way fun. Jeff had Drew, Jenna and Ali while Amer and I went to the Twilight movie on Friday afternoon. It was great fun for us -- and it forced me back on the couch to re-read the books. Yes, I saw the movie already, but Amer introduced me to it, and we needed to see it together.

We decided to keep Jen -- Drew was aching for some male bonding with his own friend by the time Amer and I got back here. Ali and Jenna decided they wanted to decorate the Christmas tree, so I started dragging the bins. They did a great job of helping sort the artificial branches (they're tagged by letter) and sticking them onto the pole. They oohed and aahed over some of the ornaments and argued over whether there were too many reds or purples in one area of the tree.

Along the way, Jen finally mastered how to blow a bubble. Alison has been trying to do the same thing for a few good months.

She took one look at Jenna's bubble and decided she she didn't really need to learn how to blow a bubble anymore. Suddenly, it was beneath her to try. (She's not always a gracious hostess.) Jenna didn't care, though. She was thrilled beyond words and just kept getting better at it. While it was killing Alison that she couldn't do it, too, she found a way to channel the little green monster that clearly would have easily taken her over. She started showing off her hand-standing abilities. There was a time when I think she might have been in danger of blood trauma she was upside down for so long.

Jenna was was too happy with her bubble-making ability to care. Finally, she declared, "This gum tastes nasty!" and spit it out. Ali came up for air and they trotted off. "Miss Cheryl, can we take a break from decorating?" I didn't see them again for hours.

We got to spend a little time with Patrick and Patricia Jackson, which was way fun. Alison has finally found a restaurant that rivals the North Side News grilled cheese: Cafe Patachou. Most people swear by the cinnamon toast, but Ali is a grilled cheese connoisseur, and she's found it an acceptable 2nd place to Matt the Newspaperman's GC.

Speaking of which, it's time for our Sunday walk. Wish me luck in wresting the redhead away from her PopTropican island game...

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