‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Thursday, February 28, 2008

deleted

One of the nice things about blogging is knowing that if, perchance, I was chased up the driveway by a pack of rabid coyotes and was then stranded on the roof of my car surrounded by fangs and glowing eyes, someone out there would eventually notice my absence and maybe leave me a comment.

That is why it disturbs me so greatly when others stop writing or just up and vanish, like Lisa from Kentucky.

Everything okay, Lisa? No coyotes?

Monday, February 25, 2008

going swimmingly

So today when I was swimming with Studley the teacher said "it's nice you're here with him - it's good for Studley to get some time with his mom."

My jaw dropped so far I swallowed 8 and a half gallons of highly chlorinated, warm, therapeutic pool water and promptly passed out just from the thought of how gross that water was. As I sank to the bottom of the pool, Studley, with a great show of studliness, did a jack-knife dive and swam down to rescue me - not easy when you're two and wearing floaties. Even in 4 feet of water.

"Some time with his mom."

Let's see. Last I checked there are 7 days in a week, multiplied by 24 hours in a day (sometimes more, trust me), minus the 8 hours a week I get to go someplace and work, equals: a lot of freakin time I spend with my kids.

Those 8 hours a week may or may not fall on a Monday, which is when Studley may or may not go swimming (we have a problem scheduling things around here). So when I'm not around, Chris takes him swimming. If he didn't take him swimming he would put him in a high chair at the burrito place that has wifi and let him eat tortilla chips and sugar packets all day while he reads Digg. That's Chris reading Digg, not Studley.

So how does he manage to come across as Mr. Mom, Professional Version, in swimming class? Not that I don't enjoy someone out there being under the impression that I am so high profile my husband is, well, a kept man. But seriously, just look at me. I'm as polished as a turnip.

When I was engaged my mother asked how long I thought I was going to have to work. At this point it's safe to say I will be working until I am in my mid-to-late-80s. I will be working that long because the alternative is to get good at cleaning my house. Which is not my thing.

Chris is actually pretty good at cleaning the house, which may be why he rocks the Mr. Mom look. One other time in swimming class I overheard two moms talking about going back to work. They were discussing how their husbands were going to have to pitch in - which would be a shock to their systems.

Don't tell anyone, but going back to work full time would be a shock to my system. I only work for people I like, and I don't like enough people to fill a 40 hour work week. Also, it is totally appropriate for me to have the attention span of a five-year-old. I like going from thing to thing to thing. I especially like meeting ad reps for coffee.

So I guess it is good that Studley gets to spend time with his mom. You know, as long as it doesn't interfere with my spa visits and press conferences. And coffee.

--

For the record, this is post #302 and completes a whole year of blogging nonsense.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

teaching

I have a friend I call when things are not as I think they should be. He's my teacher - a spiritual mentor if you will. I call him with questions and fears. I call when I hurt. He always gives me things to think about that put everything in perspective. The things he tells me are things I know but have forgotten or have lost sight of, and they always allay the fears and take away the pain.

The day before yesterday was a pretty rough one for me. We had some things going on that were making me feel heart sick, stomach sick, just plain sick. After thinking these things through all day, and finding no resolution or answer, I thought about calling my friend.

The truth is, I don't call him very often. Usually what happens is I think about calling and as I'm mentally launching the conversation I can hear his response in my head. Like I said, I know these answers, I just lose sight of them. So the conversations in my head go: she says this, he says that, she feels like a dork, dope slaps herself and says thank you. Doing it all in my head first saves me minutes on my calling plan and bruises to the forehead.

So in my head yesterday I poured out my soul.

And in my head, he laughed.

And in my head I said thank you. Because his laugh told me that no one can take what is ours, that we are not responsible for the actions of others, that only what is true and right is what endures. And we can argue all these points down to their lowest common denominator, but I'd rather rise than fall.

I did not, in this case, dope slap myself. And I did not call him.

As it turns out, I would not have had the same conversation with him if I had called. I found out yesterday that he had passed on the day before.

In my head, I'll always hear him laughing.

Friday, February 22, 2008

The Grit

Look, it's Christmas!

Next year please remind me to go easy on the Christmas rush, because it's way more fun to get surprise packages in January or February or even March. Anyone out there forget to send us anything? Hmmm? I have an opening in March for parcel delivery.

In January we got a package from Colorado containing Egg Pants. And today we got a package from Vermont, full of books and art supplies. Included was Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal Vegetable Miracle, which everyone's been talking about (by everyone I mean my sister and my friend Bella. Close enough to everyone), and The Grit Restaurant Cookbook.

Surprisingly, Animal Vegetable Miracle will have to wait because I am reading the cookbook as if it were a smutty romance. I could barely be bothered to put my children to bed. I am neglecting basic household duties. I cannot put it down.

First I went through to get the general gist of the recipes. And then I went through and read all the quotes from musicians who eat there (The Grit is in Athens, GA and absolutely everyone plays in Athens, GA). The cover says "The Grit has a far-flung reputation as the indie-rock Moosewood." - The New Yorker. And the cookbook is quite indie-rock, too. Fabulous, fabulous design.

I've never cooked southern food and will have to stock my pantry accordingly. I suddenly feel like my sister, who is always telling me my recipes have too many ingredients. I look at the recipes in this cookbook and think what? I'm actually going to have to go buy things?

There is something in there called a Golden Bowl which as far as I can tell is a pile of stuff with gravy on it. There are also two different noodle bowls, some mac & cheese and about 8 quesadilla recipes. I have to say, some of the flavor combinations sound really, really weird to me but I think I have to trust the book and follow directions. This is a new concept. I have only followed directions carefully when I've used my Indian cookbook (because I don't have the slightest idea what some of the ingredients are so cannot substitute willy-nilly or fake the measurements). Yes, for a New Englander, southern cooking is pretty exotic.

And now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go make some gravy and plan my Athens vacation.




(the page I swiped the image from has a great list of quotes)

Talk to the Tail Feathers

Thursday, February 21, 2008

frozen piles of dirt and other life analogies

Oh this has not been an easy day.

The chickens are all in a twist because I didn't let them out to frolic this afternoon. I don't know what the big deal is - all the bugs are hibernating and the ground is too frozen for worms.

Do bugs hibernate?

Anyway, I spent some time thinking about my garden this afternoon. Heather cleared the dog poop out, but it still seems like an inhospitable pile of frozen twigs and dirt. It's hard to imagine that anything worthwhile will ever come out of it. It doesn't even look like something you'd want to work on, or plan to work on. Sometimes I try not to see it at all.

Thing is, even if I wanted to turn it into something lovely right now, I couldn't. I could buy plants and fertilize and put in those nitrate thingies. I could spend heaps of money and piles of time. Oh, and I could complain about it. I could, if I chose to, have a cry or a tantrum or a full on meltdown. I could spend the day in bed because my garden Will Not Cooperate and so why should I?

But it will not help.

I just have to be patient and know that things are doing the things they are doing. Even if I don't like what they are doing. And in the spring (even if "spring" is in March or July or November), things will be right where they are supposed to be. And I will act as if I knew it all along.

Sometimes gardens are people. Sometimes gardens are houses. Sometimes gardens are jobs. And sometimes gardens are just gardens.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Monday, February 18, 2008

The Jell-O Gelatin Salad Selector

So the other day I was at my mom's house and I saw this book and said "hey mom, can I have this?" And she said of course I could have it and did I need any jell-o molds?

I told her I had all the molds I needed. I did not tell her I do not have a single mold and was mostly taking the book so that she would not make me eat anything out of it.

To be fair, I also wanted it for its design sense. It's been a long time since I owned a book with spinning pages. And I don't think I've ever owned a book with pictures quite like these. It will be kept on the coffee table.

Each page features a meat-related question, such as "are you making pork chops tonight?" And even though the answer for us is "no," how can one resist turning the little wheel to discover the Jell-O options that pair nicely with pork chops?

These salads have names like Banana Greens, Carrot Cheese Ring, Saucy Yogurt Salad and Hawaiian Harvest. Shown with the ham is Pineapple Lime Temptation.


Unfortunately, we have to skip these recipes since we don't eat much meat. We are, as our friend Jacob calls us, Flexitarians. In other words we tell people we are vegetarians if they look like they're about to make ham with a Carrot Cheese Ring. We tell my mother we are vegetarians.

We frequently eat fish, and would be especially intrigued if it were served with Cucumber Dill Slice (shown in the little window there on the right). Is there anything cucumber dill jell-o doesn't go with? It's like the little black dress of side-dishes. To be fair, Lemon Crisp Salad, with its scallions and celery is equally tempting.

On the hamburger page is a recipe for Tomato Aspic. My mother made tomato aspic once when I brought Chris over before we were married. It is made with lemon gelatin, tomato juice, horseradish and onion. He married me anyway.

Just across from the hamburgers is a Longhorn Salad. Doesn't that corn and scallion mixture look delicious suspended in lemon gelatin? Don't forget the steak sauce. It's not Longhorn Salad without it.


I have to say, I've never been much of one for steak. I think maybe because it always looked just like the steak in the picture. It's unfortunate, because that's the page with the most intriguing recipes, including Asparagus Castle, French Bean Basket and Ranch Relish Salad . Would Asparagus Castle go with something like, say, Pad Thai?

Now if you are having Jell-O recipe book envy, don't fret or stew (stewed tomatoes are divine in strawberry gelatin, btw), because they are still available out there on the internets. I just googled it so it must be so. And if you really want one of the recipes but don't want to buy the book (it's almost $5), feel free to email my mother.

Bon appetit.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Tim Finn

You know that thing you did in high school when you got a new cd (okay, album) and you thought it was the most perfect thing ever and you decided you didn't need to listen to anything else for weeks on end if not your whole life and it stayed in your cd player (on your turntable) until a family member performed an intervention and removed it while you were sleeping?

That almost didn't happen with Tim Finn's "Imaginery Kingdom."

It almost didn't happen because I mistook it for SWAG. Chris brought me two cds from Mountain Stage, which he bought while he was there with Patty Larkin (I am such a name dropper, no?). The thing is, we receive cds all the time. Bands often hand them out like business cards. We have sooooo many unopened cds on our shelf. So I looked at the bag of goodies he brought me (two cds and a Mountain Stage t-shirt) and it never occurred to me that he picked out and purchased these things. And then when he said "one of those guys (nodding towards cds) is playing in Boston on Wednesday" I said something like "that's nice, dear."

So they sat on the counter. I kept picking one of them up because the name rang a bell, but I figured I was thinking of an artist I know named Tim Flynn. Finn. Flynn. Whatever. And then on Tuesday morning I picked it up again and Chris said "Chandler says Tim Finn's brother was in Crowded House." And you could probably hear the tinkety-clink, clank, ka-chong of the tumblers falling into place and the lock on my brain swinging open. Tim and Neil Finn. Crowded House. Split Enz.

So I took it with me to play in the car and half a block later I pulled over and called Chris. "GET A SITTER FOR WEDNESDAY," I yelled over the stereo.

Tim Finn's music gives me chills and puts a huge smile on my face. I think it might be a drug. As I drove along listening, I had this feeling that everything was right and nothing could possibly be wrong and the whole world was there in front of us to do something stunning with and there was nothing but joy, joy, joy. He is a brilliant, brilliant songwriter.

On Wednesday night he played in Cambridge at Club Passim in Harvard Square. Passim is unlike any other club I've ever been in. First, they don't sell alcohol. It's a coffee shop/vegetarian restaurant (I had roasted butternut squash, caramelized onions, sage and goat cheese on coconut rice), and it's tiny - maybe holding 100 people.

I'm not sure how to do a proper music review, so I'll just say that I want to hold the show cupped gently in my hands and look at it from time to time. Seeing Tim perform put a personal edge to the songs that makes them even more luminous.

Everyone we met was nice as can be - especially Tim's tour manager, Chris (to whom we owe a huge thank you). And whoever thought it would be a good idea to give us the table near the front, we thank you too. Now I have to go order a replacement copy of Time and Tide, because mine is all worn out.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Larry Groce

Remember when you were eight years old you sometimes thought the person on the radio was singing right to you? And if you heard him a lot, especially if you listened to him as you were falling asleep, you became so convinced he was singing to you that you developed a bit of a crush?

What a coincidence, it happened to me too. And that's why I made my husband tell Larry Groce, the host of Mountain Stage, that I had a crush on him when I was eight.

My husband is a very good sport and did in fact report this to Larry. I don't know how Larry took it but I imagine he gets this sort of news all the time. I can't have been the only pre-teen who had a crush on him, although no third grader with a shred of self respect was admitting it at the time. It's not easy having a thing for a folksinger when all your friends are thumb-tacking Scott Baio posters to their ceilings.

I thought about making Chris a "My Wife Loves Larry Groce" t-shirt for when he was there, but I was afraid he'd wear it during the Bob Edwards Weekend interview.

Imagine, all these years later I am one degree of separation from the person who made me swoon as a child. In fact, I was one degree of separation even before this latest tour thing. A year or so ago a friend mentioned very casually that he played with Larry on several projects. They were like Simon and Garfunkel, Seals and Crofts, Tony Orlando and Dawn. Except that my friend's name didn't end up on the front cover. It's probably better that way, what with the rampant pre-teen crushes and all.

And speaking of NPR and teen idols (because we are, you know), did you catch Robby Benson on "Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me"? I didn't have a crush on him back when I was supposed to (because, you know, I was hung up on folksingers for heaven's sakes), but I might have to have a crush on him now. Now that he is a quasi-dairy farmer in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

That almost makes him a folksinger, right? Maybe Larry will invite him to Mountain Stage.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Patty Larkin

DON'T LOOK AT MY KITCHEN!

Oh great, you looked. Yes, I'm a little behind on dishes. It's not my fault. You see my dishwasher has, well... my dishwasher is, um... my dishwasher was, let's see... out of town. Yes of course that's right, my dishwasher's been out of town. In fact, my dishwasher's been away all week and not only that but my dishwasher's been on tour with Patty Larkin. Really, if you think about it, that explains everything.

Except that I don't actually have a dishwasher. At least, not a mechanical one. Chris does all the dishes. I plan the meals, trash the kitchen and feed the family while he follows me around and cleans up. It works for us. Or I should say, it works for us when he is not on tour with Patty Larkin. Which he has been. For the past week. And boy is the house a mess.

In the event that a) you don't know who she is and b) you didn't click on the link, here's my favorite part of her bio:
Her songs have been covered by artists ranging from modern-day chanteuse Holly Cole to pop-diva icon Cher. Her own renditions have been heard in movies ranging from Ivan Reitman's Evolution (DreamWorks) starring Julianne Moore and David Duchovny to the Sydney Pollack directed Random Hearts (Columbia Pictures), starring Harrison Ford and Kristen Scott Thomas which used Larkin's "Good Thing" as end title. She has received multiple awards, an honorary doctorate from Berklee College of Music and even been accorded her own "day" ("Patty Larkin Day") by the city of Boston.
Seriously, how cool is that? And how psyched was Chris? When he was approached about going he was very, very honored. Okay let's be frank: he squealed like a school girl. He was so honored, in fact, that he made an effort and packed clean clothes. Alright yes, I packed clean clothes for him. And for the record, I did not pack them in bundles with garanimals tags showing him what goes with what. So once he left the house, I cannot be held accountable for the way he looked.

And now he is home and it looks like all the clothes were worn, which is a good sign. He's settling back in to life without room service and is full of stories from the road.

I was especially interested to hear about a couple of the venues Patty was playing. On Saturday they were at Wolf Trap in Vienna, Virginia. Wolf Trap is a National Park for the Performing Arts and is run jointly by the Wolf Trap Foundation and the National Park Service. You know I have a crush on the National Park Service. Chris loved Wolf Trap and couldn't stop raving about it. Nor could he wait to show me his pictures.

Here's the front elevation:

And here's an architectural detail:


Needless to say, we will be needing to go on vacation soon so I can see what these places look like for myself - not that the blurry backgrounds behind the soundboards aren't enough to give one a feel for the place. Also, I've been wanting to go to Charlottesville, VA and am tickled pink to possibly have an in at Mountain Stage in West Virginia. More about Mountain Stage in a future post.

When Lucy went to bed last night, she popped back up and said "it'll take some work, but I think we should make the house EVEN NICER than those hotels for when daddy comes home." And although I am wildly jealous of the places he stayed, I don't think it will be hard to achieve Lucy's goal. Even with the gigantic pile of dishes.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Shipwreck! is spelled with an exclamation point

Is it still considered rubbernecking if the wreck happened a hundred years ago?

We, along with a heap of other curious Cape Codders, took a walk on Newcomb Hollow Beach in Wellfleet to see the wreckage of a schooner from the 1800's. They're not sure when it went down, or which ship it was (apparently they haven't found the black box yet).

The wreck had the good sense to wash up within the Cape Cod National Seashore, which means it will be protected. Sort of. I overheard some people talking about what would happen once the summer fire permits were doled out. Would someone mistake the wreck for firewood? I suspect they might. It's probably spectacularly seasoned and will make delicious toasted marshmallows.

More likely, there will be another big storm and it will get swept back into the ocean. The ocean's good like that. In fact, the ocean is likely to also scoop up the house on Ocean View Drive that had a "for sale" sign out front. We watched as some people with out-of-state license plates pulled over and picked up a brochure. Is there disclosure that the property is a ticking bomb? Every year, they lose a bit of the dune - in other words, the house becomes more and more ocean front every day. Until finally the ocean is no longer just in front of the house.

But back to the shipwreck. Suddenly it occurred to me, as I was cleaning my house today, that it is not every day one has the opportunity to see a 100 year old shipwreck. So I bundled up the kids and off we went.

Except it's never that easy. First I had to pitch it to the kids. Shipwreck! Oaken ribs! Shipping history!

No dice. So then it became a possible pirate ship. It went down in the huge waves near the Beachcomber, but lucky for the pirates, the Beachcomber was the Cahoon Hollow Lifesaving Station and the brave lifesavers saw the sinking ship and rowed their boats through gigantic waves to save the pirates! They were so brave! Everyone was safe! Even the one-legged parrot! And then the boat, which was a very beautiful schooner with lots of billowing pirate flags, went glub, glub glub.... never to be seen again. Until today.

The kids are in the car. I think they stopped listening at "Beachcomber," and they think we're going to eat chowder and bask in the sun instead of walking along the beach in every article of winter clothing we can find. But hey, if we wait until summer we might miss it completely. By then it will have been spirited away on moonless nights by locals - tiny piece by tiny piece and sold on eBay.

It's not much different from the way things were when the ship was still hauling cargo (except for the eBay part).

Thursday, February 7, 2008

CRASH: A Tale of Two Species


Our friend's new film is going to be aired this Sunday on PBS at 8pm. Even if you don't think horseshoe crabs are the coolest thing EVER, it's worth a watch. Okay, I don't know that FOR SURE because I haven't seen it yet, but judging from the other films of hers I've seen, it's a good bet.

And how can you not think horseshoe crabs are the coolest thing ever?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

tappity tap tap

Just a quick note about how I nearly became the laughing stock of the dance community. And how I saved the local economy. And things like that.

So. I signed Lucy up for a tap dancing class. "Are you mad?!?!" you ask. Obviously yes, I am. I will have a 5 year old tap dancing around the house and it is self-inflicted. I wasn't going to do it because a) I'm not sure I can stand the tapping and b) I didn't want to buy her tap dancing shoes just so she can wear them a few times before I shout "stop that infernal shuffle step, shuffle ball change!" and throw them out a window.

Then someone gave me tap shoes in her size, and what was I to do? They were perfect in every way. They just needed laces. So I signed her up for a class and then went right to the dance wear store for some laces. They were closed. So I went to my local fabric store (very local, very small fabric store), figuring I'd get some black ribbon to hold the shoes together for the time being.

We walk in and immediately a woman asks if we need help finding anything. Lucy holds up her shoes and the woman, grasping the urgency, says "you need ribbon!" She takes us over to the ribbon display while chatting on about the merits of grosgrain vs. velvet. She ties a bow, measures it, doubles it, cuts it and charges us 83 cents. She asks Lucy to tap her shoes together so she can hear what they sound like. Lucy nearly passes out in euphoric shock.

I am pretty sure they would have charged me $8.50 for the same thing at the dance store. And then talked smack about me. Because WHO thinks you need official Capezio laces for tap shoes? Me.

Monday, February 4, 2008

one less thing to worry about

That was So. Freaking. Close.

If there is a blogging equivalent of not being kissed before your 16th birthday, it is not being tagged for a meme before your first blogiversary (I hate that word). I will celebrate One Year of Neglecting My Family on February 26th and up until 8:02 this morning, I had not been tagged.

Thank you, thank you Lisa at Borrowed Heaven. Saints be praised.

Here are the rules:
  • Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
  • Share five random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog. Share the five top places on your “want to see or want to see again” list.
  • Tag a minimum of five random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
  • Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment in their blog.
Sadly, there is nothing about "send a dollar to the first person on the list...." I could use a dollar.

And you could use a little more random/useless information about me! So here we go.

1) When we graduated from high school, my friend Amy and I celebrated by unicycling almost the whole way over Vail pass and back. I do not know why, or how.
2) A picture of me was printed prominently on a flyer promoting a time-share ski condo, for which I was handsomely paid in shrimp at the opening reception.
3) I was a mouse in the Denver production of the Nutcracker when I was in 3rd grade. I was the one who got dizzy and fell down (no really, they wanted me to).
4) I have been a Sunday School teacher, despite my reputation as being Completely Godless.
5) My favorite iPod playlist includes the complete Shostakovitch string quartets, a heavy dose of Orbital and a whole bunch of stuff in between. I like it best on shuffle.

And I want to see
1) Barcelona, although I've had a thing for Madrid ever since "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown."
2) Australia. Yes, I know it's big. No, I can't narrow it down. I had a friend from Perth in high school and she made it sound totally dreamy - so maybe Perth.
3) Dubrovnik. Never been. Started learning Serbo-Croat once and saved about $10 toward my trip. Got distracted by something shiny (and forgot about the cute Croatian boy but not the descriptions of a marble-paved city).
4) Bali. We were going to have an extended honeymoon there the winter after we got married. Decided not to go when we realized I would be morning sick for most of it.
5) Old Montreal. I will probably just sit in cafés.

And now the hard part. I'm picking some fellow newbies so they can stop fretting about the possibility of not getting tagged:
Liz at North Orchard
Ambley
Aidee at This is Where I Come In (new year, new blog, new tag!)

Most of the people I know are all jaded about these things and will dope slap me if I tag them. If you promise not to dope slap me and you'd like to be linked, by all means say so. Sturdy? Rain? Any number of Lisas?

Sunday, February 3, 2008

things to do in February (when there's nothing to do)

Face the corner, first position, present the arms.

It all came rushing back, those dance classes of years ago. I was just sure muscle memory would kick in, and sure enough, as I faced the corner and followed instructions it felt just like old times.

And then it all fell apart. Soutenu? Glissade? Piqué? Oh dear.

The rest of the class was more reminiscent of Fantasia than Turning Point. And not necessarily the Dance of the Hours (with the dancing ostriches). Maybe more like Rite of Spring (with Tyrannosaurus Rex).

But oh was it fun. It was partly great because I've thought about doing it for so long and I am THE QUEEN of thinking about doing things and not doing them.

And it's partly great because I have New Shoes! And now I get to find things like those sweet little wrap sweaters. New class = new opportunity to buy stuff.

I was afraid my shoes were the wrong size because my feet cramped up about 15 minutes into the class. Turns out, I was just scared and trying to hold onto the floor with my toes. It's my lemur ancestry.

The other great thing is that we had a parent meet-and-greet party last night and I had lots of people to chat with about my latest success as a floundering dancer. I also talked to Lucy's art teacher about Lucy's burgeoning fashion sense. I think there are some people who envy a 5 year old's ability to mix patterns and stripes with confidence. The art teacher and I are two of these people.

I may start a Today in Lucy category, with her fashion picks of the moment. Today she chose polka dot leggings, a pink patterned turtleneck, a denim jumper (outgrown and now a tunic) and heart socks. She's a vision.

But not as much of a vision as me in dance class. Now THAT'S a sight.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

strawberries


Heather gave Lucy a tiny clay pot with an envelope full of strawberry seeds. We planted the seeds and, emboldened by our success with sunflowers, put them in a window to sun.

I can't wait to have strawberries! I meant to get some plants last year but by the time I made it to the nursery they looked like they had been driven over repeatedly by garden carts. I have visions of a virtual fountain of strawberries next to my front door. Of course, there's no light there so I'll have to carry the strawberry pot around with me. It won't be the first time.

In my head, it's almost spring. Which means it's almost summer. Can't you just smell the strawberry jam?

Happy Groundhog Day.