Saturday, January 27, 2018

Miser Family update, happy learning version

Life continues to be rich and full in the Miser Mom household. 

In fact, the past two weeks have been so rich and full (in good ways), that it's hard to know where to start.  So, I'll randomly begin with an N-son quote.   My sister had (re)gifted me a bottle of Chanel No. 5 she'd inherited from my mom, a fragrance her husband hadn't appreciated quite as much as one would have hoped.  I tried the perfume on during our weekly family fun night, and N-son immediately blurted out, with a wrinkled nose,
Ew, mom!  That smells like every Tuesday!
Turns out, that there's a group of Red Hat Ladies who enjoy a weekly lunch at N-son's culinary arts program.  So now it seems that I smell like a gathering of 70-year-old women. 

What else has been going on? Well, N-son got to go with my husband to some synagogue services, and through that he got hooked up with a band called the "Afro-Semitic Experience".   This picture is from a workshop they led; see N-son there at the drums in back?  He had so much fun, he's back playing with them again tonight.

My husband, in addition to enjoying a variety of events at the local synagogue, and bending himself into new kinds of pretzels in his new yoga class, got to go march in the Philadelphia Women's March last week.  The organizers expected 20,000 people to show up.  NBC estimated the crowd at 50,000, and Fox News estimated even higher (60,000 people strong).   Whatever the true number was, it was a huge event.  I'm not sure I can pick my guy out in this picture taken of the Ben Franklin parkway.

For me, the highlight of the past two weeks is also the reason I didn't write an update last weekend; I got to go visit my dad and his wife, together with my sisters, for a late Christmas gathering.   It's so good to be with family!

And here's a little brag on that self-same dad of mine:  my sister asked him about his workouts.   He admitted he's running a bit slower than he used to, now that he's, y'know, almost 82 years old, having slowed down to an 11.5 minute pace.  To make up for the fact that he's running slower, he has upped his run from 2-ish miles to 3.11 miles.  (He cares about each of those '1's).  That's right; my dad runs 5k on the treadmill, 3 times a week.  That means that there have been several weeks in recent months when my dad ran further than I did.  I'm kinda busting out with pride, here. 

Speaking of busting out with pride, can I mention J-son?  Everyone who has read this blog over the past few months know that this son of mine has had a bunch of ups and downs, with more downs than ups, and even more downs that I feel comfortable sharing publicly.  But.  But at Thanksgiving he made the wise, long-awaited choice to move back in with his former foster mom, who runs a therapeutic foster home, and who now gives him a lot of structure.  And things have been getting better since then.  In fact, he got his first report card since moving in there, and . . . wait for it . . . straight As

Admittedly, his foster mom tells me, she'd signed him up for the easiest classes she could get him into, and she helped him intensely with his homework each night.  "But I don't take his tests for him!".  So he's totally headed in the right direction.  I'm so happy.  J-son also tells me that there's a new foster-kid in the house; an 8-year-old who has latched onto J-son and vice-versa.  J-son gushed to me enthusiastically, "Mom!  This kid looks just like me when I was his age!  Just like me!"   I heard his foster mom laughing in the background, and J-son added, "well, except he's white".    A white blonde 8-year-old who looks just like my black, nappy-headed son.  I told J-son, "if the kid looks just like you, he must be really cute."

Speaking of learning, K-daughter is over the moon because A-child has proudly taken on potty training as a thing she can do herself.  Yay! 

And barking of learning (?), Prewash the dog has learned "paw" (that is, to shake hands) and "belly up".  We've now started the long, slow slog toward learning "get your ball".  That's going to be a hard trick to teach her, but she loves our daily treats-and-training session, even if she can't quite figure out what the heck I'm asking her to do.  She'd learned "belly-up" in just two days, but it took her two or three weeks of confused training to learn "paw" until something clicked and she's become the high-five champ.  So I'm hopeful we'll push through the what-the-heck toward the I-got-it! phase within a month or so.

Since so many people ask, I'll just add that my "Sing Daily" resolution continues to inspire me.  There have been a few days that I've missed, but in general I'm loving the reminder to stop what else I'm doing and belt out a couple of songs.  I usually do this toward the end of the day, as I'm getting ready to pack up my work and head home.  Singing is a nice transition. 

And that's the news from the Miser Family, which continues to be wealthy in our adventures.  May you and yours be similarly prosperous. 

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