November 22, 2005

Dear Diary

Mike called on his way home from work tonight. His cousin had sent him an e-mail saying that he was looking forward to Mike's smoked brisket on Thursday. Mike wanted to let me know that he would be preparing one to bring.

This is a new Thanksgiving tradition here. Before Mike became a master at smoking food, we never had anything other than Turkey, Turkey, Turkey on my favorite holiday. A couple of years ago however, Mike decided to smoke both a turkey and a beef brisket for the big day. This, of course, was in addition to the stuffed roasted Turkey that I have made each year for almost the last forty years.

Since, I had been going steadily since 8:00 AM this morning, I decided to put my feet up and enjoy chatting with my eldest son. He had had and even longer day. After a couple of minutes, Mike said something like this; "Well Mom, It's been a long day and I'm pretty tired. I know you have all the time in the world, but I've been talking all day, and I don't feel like talking any more."

I really do understand. It's just that when one of my boys call, I want to stop and enjoy the opportunity presented whenever possible. At their young age, they have multiple responsibilities and are working very hard. I remember how it was.

But just for the record.... I don't feel as though I have all the time in the world. The days, weeks and years go by very quickly now. And there always seems much more to do that there are hours available.

For instance, today, after my usual cup of coffee and a few minutes looking at the newspapers, I did 2 loads of wash, folded the clothes and linens, made the bed, cleaned the frig and the kitchen, straightened the house, washed two floors on my hands and knees, made 4 or 5 necessary calls that were not social.

Then I showered and dressed, made shopping lists for two markets, went to the Torrance Farmer's Market, came home and put the produce away. Next, while resting my ankle, I jotted down a menu for Thanksgiving dinner and made lists for Trader Joe's and Whole Foods markets.

Next, I got up, washed and folded another load, put that away, made sure I got out the paper shopping bags for reuse today, put them in the car, took some frozen cold packs out of the freezer and zipped them into my insulated shopping bags.

Following this, Pete and I went to Trader Joe's, where I ran into a friend who was checking out. We stopped for a minute to hug and quickly tell each other our Thanksgiving plans. At that point, I left Pete so he could say "hello" to our friend and navigated my shopping cart around the busy store.

After leaving TJ's, I packed the cold items in the insulated bags to keep while I went to pick up the free range organically fed turkey we'd ordered, and the rest of the items needed from Whole Foods Market. At this point I realized I had forgotten to bring in an item I had intended to return. So, I ran back in, returned the item and proceeded to do the rest of the shopping.

After arriving home, the groceries were then brought into the house, and put away. At this point, I went outside to supervise the tree trimming which I'd arranged in order bring our very big Ficus tree to a more manageable size.

This required contacting our next door neighbor who had complained that it had been blocking the sun from their back yard. After checking a couple of times to see if it was cut back to her satisfaction, I went into the house to contact the exterminator to see if he could come back tomorrow to help eliminate the ants that were overrunning our home.

This competent man advised me that he would come in the morning but explained that the reason they were back so quickly is that the neighbors probably were having the same problem. I asked him how much it would cost them to spray their yard too. He gave me a price. I re-contacted our neighbor and repeated what I had been told, and asked if she would be interested. She said yes, so I called the exterminator back to ask if he could spray my neighbor's yard too.

With this arranged, I called my chiropractor and asked if I could come in for an adjustment and asked Pete to rinse two cups of black eyed peas, cover them with water and start them cooking so we could have them for dinner. He agreed. Then, I then went to the chiropractor.

When I came home, I started cooking the rice, drained the beans and seasoned them, and brought out the stuff for the salad. This is when Mike called!

After getting off the phone, I started another load and called Pete down to dinner. We ate our meal and then there was the neccessary clean up. I took another load of dried clothes upstairs to fold, folded that and put it away. Then, Pete and I watched TV for an hour. When the program we watched together was over, Pete then wanted to watch an episode of Rome, which I didn't feel like watching.

So, I came into my office to check if I'd received some expected electronic mail, answered a couple of notes from friends, checked my other e-mail addresses to see if there was anything important, and deleted some undesirable comments from this blog.

It is now 11:20 PM and I still have another load of washing to fold.

Tomorrow the exterminators will be here at 8:30 AM. After they leave, I will run a couple errands, and begin the real preparation for the big meal the next day.

The thing is ... most of my days are pretty busy. I just don't seem to be able to keep up as well as I did when I was younger. Well, thanks for listening.

Posted by Judi at November 22, 2005 11:34 PM | TrackBack

Thank you, Judi, for illustrating what it takes to keep a house up and running. I'm amazed at how much I do, yet how subtle it all seems at the end of the day. And even then, there are always a few more dishes to wash.
Wish we were joining you for your Thanksgiving festivities. We miss you!

Posted by: Mrs Diggs at November 23, 2005 7:14 AM
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