Friday, August 31, 2007

We Came, and We Conquered

On Wednesday, a friend suggested that we go to WinCo later in the evening without the kiddos. We went, were easily able to find a parking spot, and only had to wait in regular grocery store-length lines. Shopping without a baby sitting directly in front of me in the cart was wonderful, and I enjoyed getting to be with my friend in my favorite grocery store. I loved the familiarity of the store and felt like I was at home. Even though I've lived here for a year now, I still have trouble finding things in the grocery stores I used to shop in and never got into a grove. I guess I could title this post, "How Kelley Got Her Groove Back."

Monday, August 27, 2007

We're Not in Moscow Anymore (read previous post first)

WinCo opened at 9am this morning. Baby and I showed up at the parking lot of WinCo at 11:20am and waited 20 minutes for one of the five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred parking spaces. Well, whatever, I told myself. At least we were in the AC and I was getting baby out of the house. We got to the front entrance of WinCo where the managers gave us a WinCo bakery hat (pictured) and told me that it was an HOUR WAIT at the check-out lines. HOLY COW!!! I'm SO glad they told me this (they weren't telling everyone, I think they just told me because they saw I had a baby). I would have been BOILING to find such a long wait at check-out after collecting my groceries. I was pretty sure that baby had missed his morning nap, and therefore, decided that we would just take a stroll through the store. Babies and long waits don't mix.

What are all these people doing at MY WinCo? Doesn't the management know I'm a veteran WinCo shopper? Can't they move me to the head of the line? I have a baby! Being the loyal WinCo shopper that I am, I felt the adrenaline rush through my veins to see that the set-up of the store was very similar to my WinCo back in Moscow. I would know where everything is. The price tags have the same font as they always have. It even seems as if the same person was hired to do their hand-written sale signs. And, WinCo still has the best prices, without having to cut coupons or use a club card. "I'll be back," I told my new WinCo. "It may be at 6am in the morning, but I'll be back."

The Day I've Been Waiting For

Today a new WinCo food store is opening in my neighborhood!!! I used to shop exclusively at WinCo when I lived in Moscow. It is where I learned to shop for food, plan meals, and spend money from my first days as a college student, to my first days as a married woman and beyond. I have many memories there. We actually had to ban hubby from going there because we would end up spending too much money (he's the impulse buyer, while I ONLY buy what's on the list). Both of these spending habits have their cons (for example, I would plan for us to eat fish sticks for dinner, and hubby would say, did you get tartar sauce? wasn't on the list.) We've learned from each other, and I've learned now what sauces (and which brand of sauce) hubby needs for which meals, and we usually have them in stock in the pantry now.

Since moving here, I've had to shop at Fred Meyer (too expensive) and at the new Super Wal-Mart (too expansive). Shopping at the Super Wal-Mart was very overwhelming because if I forgot to pick up toothpaste, it was about a mile away at the other end of the store. It was also overwhelming because they had more than just food there, and I would be tempted to shop for too much at once, and baby did not like this. I can only feed him so many crackers before his timer goes off.

Well, it has been an hour since I put baby down for his nap, and he's still awake. He just played and kept himself occupied...hmm...I guess we'll get going. I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, August 24, 2007

She'll Live on in my Dreams

Yesterday I received a call from my aunt saying that her husband drove past my old house in Idaho to find that it was gone! The manufactured home my mother put on our 5 acres was gone and the new owners are building a house. I don't really feel sad about this; the property really did deserve a "real" house. After all, my step dad built a nice shop a couple of years before we sold the property that was WAY bigger than our manufactured home, so a nice stick-built house will go well. I should mention that the shop is still standing.

When I do dream, I most often dream about this house and the town we lived in. The dreams that involve the house are not nightmares, but I usually am being chased by a bad man and am sneaking around the house trying to outwit the bad man. I should say that I think I probably dream this way because I spent a fair amount of time at the house by myself wondering what I would do if a bad person were on the premises trying to get me. Of course, I've watched my fair share of Oprah and learned to NEVER open the door to strangers. Once, I didn't even let my Grammy in the door. She had recently bought a new car, which I had never seen before. When I spotted this unknown car coming down the driveway, I automatically assumed it was a stranger, and of course, did not answer the door when she knocked. I only learned later when she got back home and called me that it was her (this was in the days before everyone had a cell phone).
Of course, thinking about my memories of this house prompted a new dream last night. The school bus dropped me off a little ways down the road from my driveway. I could hear the snow crunching under my nice black dress shoes (I frequently dressed up in my high school days) as I walked down our long driveway. When I got to the front door, I found that it was not fully closed. I considered my options (which included talking to my mother to make sure she would close the door all the way in the future) and decided to barge in. Everything looked fine in the living room, and then I wandered into the kitchen...upon which I woke up. I should explain that this dream closely mirrors an instance which happened in real life (which is a whole other story for another day).

I also have many real memories from that house: my mother and I planting tree seedlings that have turned into very large trees over the years; our MANY animals throughout the years. My mother worked very hard on our house; she had two decks, a garage, and a patio out back added to the house. She created and kept up the landscaping. I'll never forget her mowing the lawn on the riding lawn mower. We were very blessed to get the riding lawn mower. Before that, we had an electric mower, and so the area that was mowed was limited to the reaches of our extension cords. (I should mention that I was exempt from mowing because of horrendous grass allergies.) I have many memories of snowmobiling on our property, climbing onto the roof to shovel off snow, my mother treading thigh-deep in snow to check the level of the propane tank behind the house, getting stuck in our driveway because of the snow, etc.

So, where did they take our home? Where is she now? Did they gut her and tear her down right there and haul her off in scraps and pieces? Did they donate the home to a needy family? Did they haul it away in two separate pieces just like it came to us? Well, enough nostalia for now; the house will live on in my dreams.

Friday, August 17, 2007

A Whole New World

The other day for one of the Mommy and baby groups I attend, I made Cooking Light's Frozen Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie (pictured). I was very proud of it (hence my need to take a picture of it). At the mom's group, I admittedly ate about 2 1/2 pieces of it because it is SO good. While I was at the mom's group, my sense of smell returned briefly. This meant I could taste the pie better (without the sense of smell, I can only taste what the taste buds can detect: salty, sweet, bitter, and sour). Some other blessed mom brought chocolate chip cookie bars. How did she know that I have been jonesing for a chocolate chip cookie? I ate four of them (Weight Watchers, eat your heart out!). I thoroughly enjoyed this whole new world of smelling and tasting, and think it strange that my sense of smell briefly came back while I was eating everything I am allergic to. I've nicknamed this Chocolate Peanut Butter pie, "Allergy Pie." It contains milk, peanuts, egg whites, and wheat. By the time I got into the car to go home, I could no longer smell. However, this morning while baby and I took a walk, I could smell again. I smelled the sunscreen I had applied, my cherry chap stick, the evergreens in someone's yard, along with the smell of weeds. The last smell I remember is burning wood. Someone, somewhere, must have been burning a wood stove (in August??). Ironically enough, I am highly allergic to the wood smoke, and haven't smelled since. But, thanks to God for a brief whiff into a whole new world. Being able to smell is truly amazing!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Dumping Ground

Our office has stayed wonderfully clean, much to the happiness of my husband. I like it too. Although, to keep it clean, I feel I need to stay out of there. Actually, a dumping ground of sorts has developed just outside the door to the office. It currently consists of 3 shopping bags from Wal-Mart. Some of the items even belong in the office, but I fear taking them in there, because once I set them on my desk, they might stay there and ruin the harmony that our office currently has. So, instead of my desk being the catch-all or the dumping ground, the floor outside the office door has volunteered for that position. So far hubby hasn't said anything about it. I think he is still living off the high of having a clean office, and, for right now, is overlooking what he has to step over to get there.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Come and Gone

The mail finally came on Thursday and by Friday morning I had finished watching disc 2 of season 2 of Grey's Anatomy. Husband had to work late on Thursday night so I had plenty of time to watch all 5 episodes. By Friday morning, I had packaged up the disc to put in the mail. Then, over the course of Friday night and Saturday morning, husband and I had finished watching all 4 episodes on the Firefly disc, and it was picked up today. It's amazing how much I look forward to receiving the episodes in the mail, but after I watch them, I have no desire to watch them again. This amazes me because I used to be able to watch things over and over and over again. I guess I would just have something on while I was doing chores or cooking dinner. Now, I attend to a baby and don't want to introduce that much TV watching to him. Really, though, I don't find I have a need to have myself distracted when I'm with my baby. He's enough as it is.
Husband and I sat in our hot tub last night, and just as I said I needed to go inside because I was turning into a prune, he spotted a shooting star. August is the season for shooting stars, so we sat a little longer to see what we could see. I saw 2 shooting stars, and he saw 2 more. Husband shared (to my shock) that he had never seen a satellite before. I pointed out 2 as we continued to soak. I'm glad we have our hot tub in our backyard, and that we live far enough away from big lights so that we can see the starry sky, even though husband pays for it with a long commute every day to work. We don't know where we'll eventually end up, but we do want to stay put once the kids start school. For now, we're content with where we are.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Waiting for the mail

My mother just gave us a six-month gift subscription to Netflix. We do not subscribe to any cable or satellite service, so the idea of having new movies or TV shows to watch is very exciting. Today, I find myself anxiously waiting for the mail woman to come. It seems that on days when I am not expecting any new movies, but rather, I have something that needs to be mailed, she comes by 10am. However, when I am expecting my Netflix, I'm lucky if she delivers by 2:30pm. I tell myself that it's okay that she's 4 hours late, because maybe she was waiting for my Netflix movies to ensure that they would be delivered today and not tomorrow. This thought calms me down, but I still find myself looking out the window every 10 minutes or so to she if she's come. Today, I'm lucky because someone else has put something in their mailbox to be picked up, and so the little red flag on their mailbox is standing at attention announcing that the mail is still not here. If it were not for that little red flag, I'm sure I would be toting my baby out to the mailbox every half hour just to check the mail. I NEED to see the next episode of Grey's Anatomy!! I started watching the series on TV (we have an antenna that gets the 3 network channels) this past season (season 3). Now, I am going back to watch seasons 1 and 2. I am in the middle of season 2. My husband is waiting for the next episode of Firefly to come, and we're both waiting for the movie Breach. I'll let you know how we like each movie/show in upcoming posts.