Saturday, January 03, 2009

Potpourri No. 23: New Year's Edition

Tiny tidbits marking the transition from 2008 to 2009…

Goodbye, 2008!
Melanie and I welcomed 2009 in the grand tradition of renting a bunch of movies and buying a ton of snacks. Not only did we boost our Netflix membership up to the three-at-a-time option (just for this month, solely for the purposes of celebrating New Year’s Eve in style), but we ended up getting a couple of DVDs from the library as well. We watched Horton Hears a Who! with Edison (when Mommy and Daddy weren’t dozing off), and then once Edison was in bed, Melanie and I watched Hancock, which I really enjoyed (though the first half is much better than the second half). Once the movie was over, we still had about an hour before the new year would arrive, so Melanie and I worked on a jigsaw puzzle while watching the latest episode of Top Chef, which we had recorded earlier in the evening. All in all, it was an indulgent and fun evening, and we had plenty of movies left over to last us through the weekend.

Hello, 2009!
On New Year’s Day itself, Melanie started a new tradition of baking a cake for New Year’s Day breakfast. Eddie was thrilled about that and has adamantly requested the cake every few hours since. (He insisted it was a birthday cake, and as such, we had to put candles in it and sing.) The cake, which was yellow cake with chocolate frosting and sprinkles, has finally been entirely devoured, but it was fun while it lasted. A few hours after that, we packed up a picnic lunch and headed to Lake Ella to feed the ducks as well as ourselves. There were tons and tons of seagulls at the park, which is not the case in the warmer months, and this made the feeding of ducks a rather intimidating experience. Whenever poor Edison would toss a duck a scrap of bread, it seemed a thousand seagulls would swarm around him and begin their screeching supplications for food. It kind of freaked my little boy out, and I don’t blame him. (Obligatory 80’s pop-music pun: This was a flock of seagulls that would definitely inspire a person to run, to run so far away.) Luckily, the seagulls are fairly quick to move on once they realize you don’t have anything more to give them. We were able to eat our lunch in peace.

The Page Turner
Reading was a fairly successful activity in 2008. I read a grand total of 6,779 pages. That might not sound all that impressive, considering I had read nearly 2,200 pages by the end of last February. But, I can’t help feeling good about the totals. My goal for 2009 is to read somewhere between 8,000 and 10,000 pages. I’m not as confident about this as I could be, but we’ll give it a shot. For some reason, the bus system in Tallahassee doesn’t seem as conducive to leisure reading as did the train system in Atlanta, even though I’m probably spending roughly the same amount of time in transit on any given school day. Still, I’m certain I can do better than I have been doing the last several months, where I’ve failed to read even 500 pages within a 30-day period. For shame!

You’re Older Than You’ve Ever Been, And Now You’re Even Older
Another adulthood benchmark was reached this last week as Melanie and I became official members of Costco. Beyond a few basics, I’m not sure how much of our shopping we can really do at Costco, since we’re still a small family and purchasing certain items in bulk just doesn’t make sense. But we figure the cost of the Costco membership will be returned to us on the price of milk alone. It’s at least a dollar cheaper per gallon at Costco than anywhere else we’ve seen, and we’re somewhat big on milk around here lately. The cheese was also a lot cheaper, and I’m guessing we can save roughly one buck every time we fill up on gasoline if we do it through Costco. And so, it seems the membership dues will be worth it. It’s also nice that, because it’s a brand new Costco, it’s not very crowded yet, unlike Wal-Mart. Another perk: lots of free samples. I'm jonesin' for another chicken potsticker!

From the Mouths of Babes
Tonight, Melanie and I finally hung up a curtain rod in our bedroom. It’s not like we’ve needed one, but our bedroom is right by the front door, and the porch lights come on automatically every night and are not something we can turn off. Ergo, our bedroom is fairly well lit during the nighttime hours. We’ve wanted to rectify this situation for a while, but during the school year, it always seemed I had some other project that was more pressing. Well, tonight there is finally a curtain hanging in our bedroom. Whew! But the best part about it all is what Edison said to me after I had finished screwing in the brackets and officially nestled the curtain rod into place. He said, “I’m so proud of you!” Well, you had to hear it for it to be as cute as it was, but it made me feel better about the project than actually having the project completed. I’ve never heard him use that phrase before. It was adorable.

Time Keeps on Slipping…
The problem with going out of town for the holidays is that the time passes all too quickly. I rushed to get all of my final papers done for the semester, and then just a few short days later, we flew to Utah. Now we’re back in Tallahassee, and in just a few days, I’ll be back at school. Tuesday morning, to be exact. I can hardly believe it. Call me spoiled, but it doesn’t feel like I’ve had much of a break. Certainly not three weeks worth! Sadness. I’m not all that excited about being super busy again. And this semester, I’ll be going to campus five days a week. I haven’t had to do that in a long time. Sigh. Oh well.


  1. Chad and I got a membership to Costco when they first put one in our town, but we didn't renew after a year. Chad read in a book that people who shop at stores like that just end up eating more. Since we didn't need to do that we went without the membership for a while, then my parents paid for one for us. I think you only eat more if you shop there quite regularly. Since we only buy things there that are truly a good deal we don't go too often. Milk and cheese like you said. Diapers and wipes when they mail out coupons. Also when there is a coupon their fruit leather snacks are a fun indulgence. Photo prints are also a great deal. Some of the fruit is generally pricey and in my experience has gone bad way too quickly. You just have to know your prices, it's obvious you do. I usually go shopping with my sister, who has an amazing mind for remembering food prices. We usually only leave Costco with a few items in our cart, usually around $35 but sometimes $60. While we sit an enjoy a piece of pizza or a churro we watch people with overflowing carts and wonder how much they spent.
    Don't forget to fill up with gas at Costco as they generally have the lowest prices around.
    Good luck with your new semester. I'm sorry the time has passed too quickly.

  2. I love to go to Costco for two reasons: CHURROS and free samples. (I get gas there too)

  3. Oh by the way, I'm sorry that time went by so fast for you on your break, but it did my soul some good to see my oldest friend. Thanks.

  4. It sounds as if you have settled down into normalcy. I'm sorry you won't have another couple of weeks to enjoy it. Sigh! Your dad says it sounds like you've grown up and I have to agree. You have your own home and that's where you want to be.

    I loved the Eddie critique on your curtain project. He's so precious. And it sounds like you started the new year in a positive and perfect way. Good idea...a cake for New Year's Day. Feeding seagulls or ducks?....hmmm, not the usual fare, nor is having a picnic. I've actually come to dislike those critters...they seem so threatening as they stare you down and inch closer and closer to you. It's CREEPY!!!!

    I'm impressed with, not only the amount you've read, but that you can claim to know the numbers of pages.

    Happy New Year...may you progress significantly. We already miss you.