Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Belated Birthday Dinner

We had my mother's belated birthday dinner today. For those keeping track, yes, this is the second full-on family dinner in three days. (See, same placemats as Sunday even, but different napkins.) We're done for a little while after this one. And, anyway, Auntie C did most of the cooking. A word to the wise, the butternut squash gnocchi from Sunset magazine requires more flour than is mentioned in the recipe. But, they do taste good. We bought the cake, one pain-in-the-neck recipe (gnocchi) being the limit for today.

The most exciting part of the day (for me) was starting our birthday tradition, suggested by Amanda Soule in her book The Creative Family. I've really been trying to figure out some things we can do with Liam to mark the seasons and so he will have some traditions to rely on. He is, already, a kid who loves to know what to expect. The first thing we've come up with is for birthdays. Over the next year, everyone in the family will get a birthday crown as a present on their birthday. We've timed it so my mother's crown is the first and Will's mother's will be the last, and Liam's will be somewhere right in the middle. He "helped" choose the wool felt and watched some of the crown come together and was pretty interested in my mother wearing the crown. As he gets older, I hope he'll be able to participate more in making the crowns and, anyway, will enjoy them and enjoy the way they reinforce the birthday as a special day and the birthday-person as a special person. I suspect most everyone else in the family thinks I'm nuts, but I'm really excited about the birthday crowns.

In addition to birthday celebration planning and implementation, today featured: two workers from the heating and cooling company finally here to put in the permanent furnace vent (made necessary by the chimney removal). And a very nice guy from the cable company hooking up the cable television, which took, I kid you not, a full 4 hours. He didn't leave until after 6:00 pm. We tried to get him to eat some dinner (he declined), but we did get him to take some sweet rolls. He said he had a whole other house to work on after us, God help him.

Camera battery just went dead, so I'll try to take some better pictures of the first birthday crown another time. I think it's fantastic, if I do say so myself.

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