Looking For a Secular Florida Umbrella School?

Monday, December 06, 2004

Better than Christmas

I have been spoiled these last few days.

First, over to Fort Lauderdale Thursday afternoon to see "Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!" which was fun. We got the evil eye from fellow theatergoers, worried that our children, the only three in attendance, would cause some sort of ruckus. The only one I was worried about was L, the youngest, who lacks volume control. She got a little wiggly on my lap, but never made a peep, and fell asleep about a third of the way through the show. We hit the Cheesecake Factory afterward for a late dinner. Our waiter was a Joseph Fiennes look-a-like who winked at me and called me "lovey."

Friday we hung out at Nanny and Papa's in Fort Lauderdale before returning to the west coast. The kids had fun swimming -- I throw that in just for my relatives up north -- their not oft seen cousins dropped by, and I spent a little more time reading Climbing Parnassus, the book that never ends. My old friend Carol called me out of the blue. She completely forgot my birthday, never mentioning it once, though I think something must have stirred her memory to cause her to pick up the phone, and that made my day. You expect people to call with obligatory wishes; it's the ones who call simply because they miss you that you really appreciate. It's been nearly a year since we last spoke, but she's one of those people you just pick right back up with in spite of the lapses.

Saturday, I knew something was up when Dad volunteered to take all three girls grocery shopping with him. He does not generally tend toward the masochistic. He planned to make a pot of chili, which doesn't require many items, nor are the secret ingredients particularly hard to locate, but they were gone for nearly the entire afternoon. When they returned there were three bunches of flowers, one from each girl, and a subscription to the symphony. Oh, and chili fixin's too.

Yesterday we hopped in the car and took a drive down to Clyde Butcher's Big Cypress Gallery to pick up last year's birthday present, still on lay-away. Mr. Butcher has so many awesome images, it had been a very difficult decision. We ultimately chose Cayo Costa #3 (under "Photos-Limited Edition Florida") which shows the beach we visit on our return boat ride from Cabbage Key, one of our favorite places to lunch on a lazy weekend. The second place choice had been one not listed on the website, showing a wide swath of sawgrass winding through a frame of sabal palms and topped with a high contrast cumulonimbus. That one struck me for its absolutely balanced composition and perfect, seemingly endless view. It was a low number in the limited edition and also not one of his more familiar images which I guessed might make it more valuable some day. It was still hanging in the same spot, right over the cash register where I stood ogling it while G paid the balance on the Cayo Costa photo. We were considering swapping the Cayo Costa for it when G surprised me by pulling out a check and leaving another deposit. We justified it with the knowledge that in one year, our first photo has doubled in price. The lay-away is a deal. We left thinking that we will have to buy at least one more so that someday each of the girls will have one of their own. We found a neat little joint for dinner, reminded me of The Whistle Stop Cafe, and indeed there were fried green tomatoes on the menu. G ordered those, I got Indian fry bread with sweet salsa, and we both had a bowl of lima bean and ham soup.

A final stop on the way home at Kinko's, where I picked up the key components for our language arts study next year, Classical Writing - Poetry and Classical Writing - Homer.

Music, art, books, food, friends, and a wonderful family, what more could you ask for?

No comments: