Sunday, June 7, 2015

If this is a prelude to the Summer of 2015, I'm all in

Jefff and I got a text from Alison -- the Friday before she starts high school summer school -- not to bring anything home or make plans for dinner: she was making a romantic dinner for us.

What does it say about parents who read that text in their separate offices and immediately wondered what havoc she'd wrought, what sin she'd committed and how deep her prep for softening the blow of her confession would go.

It's possible we also wondered if it would be coconut shrimp from the freezer and mac-n-cheese with cupcakes for dessert.

It's also possible that we need to stop bracing ourselves for the terrible (INSERT YEAR) to start.

We started with caprese kabobs -- she used the remnants of an earlier appetizer and put her own little twist to it. Roma tomatoes quartered, skewered with basil and mozzarella, drizzled with mozzarella and sprinkled with fresh ground pepper.

The main course was baked, Asian-style chicken with mushroom caps stuffed with garlic, bread crumbs, provolone and parsley with a side of udon noodles with sesame oil & seeds, carrot and chives.

Dessert was a peach, halved and baked with brown sugar and butter, paired with scoops of vanilla ice cream.  She would have broken out a bottle of wine but said she thought she might get arrested for dabbling in alcohol.

This is her explaining "What I've prepared for you tonight...." (She's watched "Choppped" a time or two...)

Sure, she did all this in her underwear and hadn't brushed her hair all day, but hey: did your kid make you a restaurant-quality dinner Friday night?  I didn't think so.

To reward her, we had her help us paint the first coat on our new backyard shed on Saturday. We'd been planning to hire that job out, along with some other stuff. 

It's going to be an Angie's List kind of summer for us. We've already had great success with an electrical problem and a chimney issue using my fancy AL SnapFix app. The chimney thing was so easy that Jay, who fixed it, wouldn't charge me. I felt so bad about wasting his time that I asked him what he thought about a crack in the window box out front. 

Overr the years, there's been some water seepage, may due to that or other cracks. The west corner has a bigger issue, and all told, it's  the kind of thing that can lead to really terrible issues. Plus, the brick on our house isn't made anymore, so  it'll be a fairly expensive job. I no longer feel bad about the flue thing, and we'll be seeing a lot of Jay very soon, I expect.

Given the specter of the bricks, we thought we could paint the shed ourselves. Ali was excited at first. She was looking forward to ladder work and she liked picking out the paint at the store. A few hours in, her enthusiasm had waned a bit. And I have to admit that I was wondering what I'd been thinking when Jeff and I were discussing sizes and I'd insisted that we get the biggest on because even if we didn't NEED all that space, better to have more than we need than not enough and find ourselves still not able to park in the garage.

I kept that to myselve. The shed is nearly as big as our one-car garage. Something like 16x11x12. I'll love it again once the final coat has dried, I'm sure.


We ended the first day of the project with all but the bottom wood primed or painted.  Rain will move in tonight so we'll finish up when we have a dry spell in the forecast. (We were all a little bit thrilled by that news if were honest.

So that's been out weekend. We also welcomed (long-distance) a new member of the family. Ali will meet her cousin, Nicodemus, at the end of the month when she visits Team Reed Maine. 

It's good that it's a few weeks because she apparently needs some time to rest her petting arms so they work again. And I need a few more Friday dinners.


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