Monday, November 30, 2009

Taught the kids how to play canasta and hearts this past weekend when Pop was visiting. A just turned 10 and Q is almost 8. They only need showing once. Poor Q couldn't get to sleep last night and was in fact sobbing in my arms over a perceived stumble in a round of canasta with his brother and me. I had mentioned that it was possible to go out with a "concealed hand". Being the little risk taker he is he decided to go for it. Unfortunately it just barely didn't go his way (he actually could have gone out but overlooked an Ace he picked up). He was reliving the horror apparently. In the middle of the night he came running down the hall after another "bad dream". Card related no doubt. Today things have gone much more his way. He is remarkably astute with strategy - when to play tempting cards for discard and when to avoid giving away the pile at all costs. Big brother is fully competitive too. I'm impressed that they both grasped the basics of both card games including following suits in hearts and keeping track of points needed etc in canasta. They are wondering when we will teach them bridge... Today it has been all cards to the detriment of getting their homework done. I was impressed with their card sense and also surprised at the depth of Q's feelings when he realized he had made a blunder (and not a big one at that!).

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Many thanks to class mom Mison who is one of the most generous people I know. Today she had 5 of us over for lunch. She had a spread for us to make our own spring rolls. Rice wrappers, several pounds of warm shrimp, lettuce, cilantro & basil, pickled mustard diakon like thing?, asian long green beans, something in the garlic family, bean sprouts, and very hot dipping sauce and some hot dipping sauce cooled with peanut butter and sugar. So nice! And to top it all off she sent me home with 2 mason jars of canned tomatoes - that she had harvested herself at the farm near Sacramento. One playdate Q had at her house ended with us being sent home with sushi, soup and salad. Crazy woman but such a great cook! Wish I could do things like that. Instead I had a nice meal for Halloween but managed to forget to cook the rice - and we had stew. Oh well! We made due with some left over rice, Trader's precooked rice etc. Not the same but it worked out.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

best carving job we saw

best carving job we saw, originally uploaded by beverlykaytw.

This was the most awesome pumpkin (and there are quite a few really cool ones) we saw on our annual crazy Halloween festivities. We had 9 friends over for dinner (I fed the kids in a whole separate room from adults for the first time!) and then trick-or-treating on the local Halloween street. I have a bunch more photos over in my fotki account (if interested email me). The people go all out and turn their garages into spooky environments, one garage was a place to have a light saber duel with a good guy or bad guy, one place always has characters dressed up in a recent popular animated movie - this year Penguins of Madagascar, some people project movies like Frankenstein on their windows or on impromptu screens. We ran into at least 10 other kids we knew and missed some others. We didn't hit every house but the least # of candies any of the kids came back with was 75 and one kid had over 100 pieces of candy.