I am still a bit . . . not at my best, health-wise, so I am still not keeping up with the Internets at my usual pace. Life continues, however, with many recent highlights.
— I confess I had some undue pride at hosting Barack Obama in my town last night. I don’t like to discuss politics via blogs/online forums, so I’ll just say that I thought was exciting to know that a little piece of history was happening here. I didn’t get to go, but I’ve chatted with some friends today who did. I sat in my car and listened to his speech, as it started just as I got in my car to go run an errand.
— In an effort to feel better, I have been digging out some old cookbooks, including Mollie Katzen’s Vegetable Heaven. There are some really wonderful recipes in there. Tonight we had two — a nice tabbouli and a really unusual lima bean recipe, just limas, sliced green olives, and sliced garlic cloves, roasted in olive oil. Something out of nothing, with almost no prep time! I am also studying Lynne Rossetto Kasper’s new book — I am a Minnesotan after all — and Passionate Vegetarian. I am not so much trying to eat less meat as just trying to get out of a rut and back into enjoying cooking more.
— Victoria and I took a nice walk after dinner, with both of us periodically commenting on the pleasant night. We stopped at a school playground for a while, then began to walk back home by a slightly different route. In her sweet and deep-felt way she said, “Isn’t everything beautiful?”
— Violet has been busy wrapping up the year in performances, just like Victoria. I have no photos from the cabaret, but it was fun to watch the kids’ individual performances. Violet sang “Rubber Duckie” sitting in a “tub,” and sang in a German trio, in addition to her monologue and a sketch in which she was a political commentator. They just wore “stage blacks,” adding props and accessories as needed. After the Saturday matinee we went to our favorite local Chinese restaurant, Rainbow. Some of the older performers sang songs from Spamalot and Wicked, so that I often hear one or both children singing “The Song that Goes Like This” and “Loathing” (or whatever it’s called).
I have to make clear that these pictures do not resemble my husband in anyway — he is one of those people who likes to mess up your photos by making awful, awful faces. 🙂 (Sometimes he is more sneaky about it, just flaring his nostrils or doing weird things with his eyes.)
— She also took part in the Minnesota Music Teachers Association Honors Concert. Hers is the youngest age group. Here she is, my big girl, but when her group walked out on stage the audience went, “Awwww . . .” The high school young artist of the year was absolutely mind-blowing on his Lizst piece. He’s a sophomore, and he won 3rd place in the national music teachers event. He’s also one of two Americans participating in an international version. Really amazing, and he seemed like such a sweet, humble kid besides. The groups all play duets, and it is a relief just to see them all stay together til the end of the song! Being a good solo pianist — which gets you into the concert — does not make you a good ensemble player, and many of the kids of all ages just did not look at the conductor. Still, it is a special night for the kids, and everyone tries to make them feel very special for earning a spot in the concert. One of these photos is actually a photo of a photo. And the last one actually resembles Eggmaster.