Weekend highlights

A few highlights from this past weekend: On Friday, I went to Princeton for a low-key version of Reunions. It is not a major one for me (16th!) but there was a class happy hour, and since I live a mere hour away, I decided to go for it. I had a good time, and I was home around 9 p.m. Also, I got a hoagie from the Wawa, which made me relive my time there on so many levels. All I needed was a giant coffee and a 100 grand bar and that would have been the meal that powered the writing of my senior thesis.

On Saturday, I spoke at the Be Well Philly conference, put on by Philadelphia magazine. I think this was a first time I have spoken to an audience all wearing leggings. Also, I was outside! I was kind of dancing between the shade and the sun, trying to avoid both glare and sunburn. But the audience was attentive, and energetic, so that was nice.

I got up on time and went for a lovely 5 mile run on Sunday morning. I became somewhat obsessed with the speed reader that is one of the photos illustrating this post. It was blank when I started running toward it. Then all of a sudden, it registered 5 mph. My speed! I picked up the pace and it went up to 6-7 mph. I was so tickled by the idea that it was picking up a runner’s speed, and not a car’s.

When I came home, my husband and my 2-year-old were snuggled up very sweetly on the couch. The 2-year-old and I spent a relaxing morning together while my husband and the 7-year-old and 5-year-old went to an air show somewhere in PA (they met up with cousins there). We had a sitter come at 1 p.m. so I could take the 10-year-old to his piano recital. This was a really well done recital — the music school encourages the teachers to do duets or accompany the kids on another instrument, so the majority of the pieces featured a professional musician helping out. This makes everything much more tolerable to listen to. They also do about a dozen shows spread over 2 weekends, so each is only 60-90 minutes. This also makes everything more tolerable. My son played Ode to Joy with his teacher, and they used the “organ” setting on a keyboard so it sounded big and full. I was very proud of him.

We’ve been discussing a lot how he wants to continue with music. This year, he’s done musical theater, choir, orchestra, and piano. He definitely wants to do more musical theater, and he wants to double down on the viola rather than piano. So he asked to sign up for individual lessons on viola in addition to his group lessons at school. While I’m more of a piano partisan myself (I actually played for half an hour today after the recital!) I am quite excited about him knowing about an instrument and choosing to study it — I think that bodes well for sticking with it.

Another sign he’s growing up: He completed the Shutterfly book for 2016 for our family. Now that he has taken over this task, my husband and I never have to do it again! I decided to leave his narrative as it was for the year. “December started out with our getting a lot of stuff for Christmas…” I guess that’s what he remembers…

We had the sitter all day (best use of cash ever) so after my husband and the two middle kids came back from the air show, we took the 3 big kids to El Vez downtown for my husband’s birthday dinner (while the 2-year-old stayed home). The kids were reasonably good, and since the restaurant was willing to make them off-menu cheese quesadillas with sour cream, they ate that and guacamole and filled up. The margaritas were excellent. We came home, had ice cream cake, and now I’m watching the NBA finals.


3 thoughts on “Weekend highlights

  1. Sounds like a great weekend! I’m impressed you were able to enjoy a nice birthday dinner with kids. My boys are 5 and 7 and are still so wiggly and impatient in restaurants. Any glass with a stem on the table and my kids spells certain doom. They’ll outgrow it eventually- right?

  2. Viola was my first instrument! I am more likely to get my fiddle out these days, but if I ever go back to playing in an orchestra, I’ll go back to the viola section.

  3. Another viola player here! I just play on my own for fun now, but I still love it. I also think there is something to be said for playing the least-popular stringed instrument–more opportunities to stand out and be in more competitive groups, etc. Competition can be stiff to be first violin but not as much for first viola! I started playing in fourth grade and as a somewhat introverted kid it was an awesome way to make friends. In junior high and high school it was really nice to have a built-in group that I belonged to with friends from all different grades and at least some people I knew from elementary school orchestra.

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