The Lord(s) of the Rings

December 5, 2009

Because Martha had been teaching and then had Parent-Teacher on Thursday when the boys got their X-Rings, we agreed to get together here on Friday to celebrate.  Just before I was heading out the door to go curling, Martha called and asked if we’d be up for lobsters if Stephane could find the truck.   Who would say no to that?  I pulled a package of puffed pastry out of the freezer to thaw and was out the door.

When I arrived home from curling, Martha & Stephane had just arrived and D’Arcy was upstairs putting the kids to bed.  Sarah & Olivia did come downstairs once for some hugs, but then went right back up to bed for the night.  We poured some drinks, put the salted water on the barbeque to boil and I wrapped some cheese, rosemary & port jelly in the puffed pastry and put it in the oven to bake before serving with crackers.

Stephane wanted to know if D’Arcy had truly been surprised and was amazed when D’Arcy told him that he’d had absolutely no clue!  I couldn’t have pulled it off without Martha & Stephane’s  help!

We talked about the Ceremony and laughed at how awful the guest speaker was.  The content of his speech was definitely geared to the younger graduates and not to the mature students or children or parents who might have been in attendance.  D’Arcy & Stephane knocked rings and the night was all-around fun!

We had seafood casserole & asparagus to start and then moved on to our lobsters.  Martha’s hands break out when she cracks open lobster, so Stephane opens hers for her.  Since he’s so fast at it, he started all four of them for us.  I appreciated not having lobster juice all over me!  I brought out the section of D’Arcy’s cake that said “RING” for dessert and we had champagne.

Not bad for an impromptu dinner!

The Lords of the Rings

The "Master" (of Education) at work!

Martha & Stephane

Seemed an appropriate dessert!

More knuckle bumping (we decided that was a more appropriate pose than holding hands!)

Lots of laughter!

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Monday!

October 20, 2008

Mondays around here usually mean recovering from the weekend – the laundry and the mess are always piled up after everyone has been home for two days!  Today is no different, but last week was unusually busy around here.

I haven’t forgotten about the blog, but so many exciting things happened last week that are going to take some time & thought to put into words!  My cousins were here from Portland, OR, I got to go away overnight to a Board meeting and went on a graveyard tour, I had a visit with my grandmother for the first time in years and she knew me (!), we had a great-nephew born, and I started planning Sarah’s birthday party.  That on top of basketball registration, skating registration, two birthday parties, guests, and normal activities meant I was not at the computer very often!!

We were so happy to have Phil & Susan here, and glad that they brought along their friends Mark & Pam from North Carolina.  They are so easy to have around and the kids love them!  The last time they were here, I was expecting Sarah and they had to leave just shortly before she was born.  Phil’s daughter Lori & I are traveling eerily similar journeys through life with our four children.  Phil tells me he teases Lori by asking what she’ll do if we have another baby!  (Don’t worry, it’s not going to happen – although their story of adopting their youngest daughter from Russia is so compelling!)  We had one last dinner together here on Saturday night (lobster!) before they headed back to the States early Sunday morning. 

I got to leave and go away on a retreat overnight with one of the Boards I sit on mid-week.  The retreat was held at the beautiful Hillsdale House in Annapolis Royal.  The setting was beautiful and the leaves on the drive were absolutely gorgeous.  I drove down on Wednesday, a perfect, sunny, Fall day.  That night we met at Fort Anne and went on the last Graveyard Tour of the year.  I have heard our guests rave about it for years and it was everything I had expected and more!  I loved it! It wasn’t the least bit creepy or scary but I have to admit that when I got back to Room 5, the two ladies on the wall did creep me out a bit!  Everybody made out just fine without me, and the boys were thrilled that I arrived home just as they were getting home from school so that they could see my rental car – a white Jetta!

Our meeting had ended early on Thursday morning, so I took the time to visit my grandmother who is in a nursing home in the area before I went home.  I hadn’t seen her in about eight years, shortly after she had broken her hip.  At that time, she had dementia and thought I was my mother.  I do have a happy memory of her insisting on giving Evan some ice cream from that visit, so I wasn’t sure if I wanted to replace it with a memory of her in the state she is in now.  Love won out though, and I decided that even if she didn’t know me, I would never forgive myself if I were that close and didn’t go…

As luck would have it, the director of the nursing home where she lives has stayed with us as a guest a few times, so I sought her out and said, “I know it’s close to lunchtime and she probably won’t know me, but do you think I could visit my grandmother?”  She told me that it didn’t matter if she knew me or not, she would love a visit!  We started out in search of her, and I knew her the instant I saw her!  She was in a wheelchair, outside the dining hall and she looked wonderful, not at all what I had expected to find!  (The last time my parents were there, she was curled up in a ball in bed & unresponsive.)  I said, “Hi Gram!  It’s me, your grandaughter.” She beamed at me and repeated, “Yeah…yeah…yeah…yeah”.  I started to remind her of some of the things we used to do together and she said, “Oh.  My.  God!”  The nurses couldn’t believe that she recognized me, let alone spoke!  I started to cry and she moved her hand slightly, so I took it and held it while I kept talking & talking to her.  She was so nicely dressed in a pretty red cotton sweater, with a cheery yellow blanket over her lap.  Her hair was nicely brushed back and she even had on a string of pearls and clip-on earrings.  When I leaned in to kiss her, she smelled clean and well cared for.  This meant so much to me, especially because my visit was unannounced!  She didn’t ever break eye-contact with me and kept trying to tell me things, but I couldn’t understand her.  I told her over and over that I loved her and got her caught up on all the family news.  One of the other nurses called her “Princess” and another stopped and said – “Look at that – she knows you!”  I realized I was holding up her lunch, so I left her reluctantly with promises of sending more photos of the kids.  Needless to say, I am thrilled that I made the effort to go.  She’s 92, so this may very well have been my last visit.  Funnily enough, on my last visit before she died with my other grandmother, who had Alzheimer’s, she recognized me and called me by name after not knowing me for years.  Funny how the brain works!

Yesterday, we had a meeting of our local B&B association.  We are part of a larger organization which is becoming dysfunctional so over the next few weeks, I will be busy preparing some presentations to make at our upcoming AGM.  These presentations involve going over the Constitution & by-laws with a fine tooth comb, not something I enjoy doing! 

This week involves Curling Registration, PTG, the beginning of skating for the season, planning a birthday party and the debut of Highschool Musical 3.  I have been told that you can buy advance tickets at the movie theatre so that is on my “to do” list…  I’d better go get at some of these things!