This past weekend was a nice one. For starters, we had real fall weather, with a nip in the air and lots of the trees starting to change. Second, we had a good number of “anchor events.” It was just the right number to make the weekend feel full of good memories, but with enough space for down time too.
On Friday night, my husband and I went to the restaurant Sbraga with some friends. Our friends are part owners of the restaurant, and they’d donated a dinner to the preschool silent auction last spring. I bid and won, and finally got around to using the gift cards (with them). Chef Kevin Sbraga, who won Top Chef several years ago, came over to our table a few times to talk and helpfully sent over the items that he thought we should have ordered but didn’t (like the BBQ parsnips). It was a great dinner, from the foie gras soup to the semifreddo.
On Saturday, we got a slow start (foie gras soup will do that to you). I managed to read for about an hour while the kids played. I am now close to page 400 in Capital in the Twenty-First Century.* We let my daughter open her family birthday presents one day early, so there was a lot of playing too. Seeing the joy on her face and her brothers’ faces was pretty fun. I think Christmas will be something this year. After lunch, we hopped in the car and drove up to Blue Mountain in the Poconos. They had their Octoberfest, and the kids made crafts and painted pumpkins. We took a hayride up into the hills (I didn’t go on the ski lift, though. I don’t like heights!) Even if I didn’t get to drink a giant frosty mug of beer (I took sips of hubby’s), it was lovely to be in the cold, seeing the bright colors, which are closing in on peak at altitude.
Sunday morning I got up early and went for a run. The temperature was about 48 degrees at 7:30! I got in 4 miles before breakfast, and by the end it felt pretty good.
Then I took my now 3-year-old (Happy Birthday!) to soccer at the YMCA. It’s a cute little class and she had fun kicking the soccer ball around. Then she consented to go to the playroom for 20 minutes while I ran another 1.5 miles.
After lunch, we went for a short family walk near Valley Forge (my Fitbit was at 18,000-plus steps for Sunday and I didn’t even have it on for the extra 1.5 miles on the treadmill!). Then it was off to the 3-year-old’s party, which was at the exact same place where we celebrated the 5-year-old’s birthday. They made it easy as usual. At one point, I went into a bouncy house and crammed into a little bouncy tunnel with my 3 offspring because they wanted to have all 4 (!) siblings in their little hideaway. The littlest guy tends to travel with me. At home, we opened presents and did some more playing. Then my husband and I had dinner together: steak, spaghetti squash, and leftover veggies from the birthday party veggie tray. We ended with an apple pie my husband baked earlier in the day. Quite a good dinner, and the kids were in bed by 8:30. Compared with being in bed around 10, that’s a much better way to end the weekend.
I need to think through next weekend ahead of time since I’ll be on solo parent duty. I have a rough plan, but some more anchor events would help…
* It is quite a juxtaposition to write about foie gras soup and Piketty’s book in the same paragraph.
In other news: The cold weather led to a slight crisis today (Monday). It was long pants weather. My 7-year-old has been wearing shorts all summer and, sure enough, nothing fit. The only pants he could wear without showing massive ankle were the black dress pants I bought for their recent photos. So he went to school in those, and I went to Old Navy tonight to load up on size 8 pants.