Tuesday, August 01, 2006

A Visitor from the West

The Random Mother-in-law is in residence this week.

The Random Household is tidier than it has been in . . . well, years. The new paint in the bathroom has been touched up, new shower curtains purchased, matching towels adorning the towel racks, and my sea of random lotions and sprays has been taken off of the counters and put neatly into shelves and cabinets.

The kitchen, while still resplendent with the fugly wallpaper and counters, has everything neatly put away and actually looks functional. It isn’t though – Yesterday, while Mr. Random took his mother out to lunch, I stayed at home and actually made gazpacho, marinated some herb-crusted pork chops for dinner, and baked a fig-date-walnut bread from a recipe I found in Cooking Light. In making all these things I realized that our cabinets are just horrible – all of the baking-ware and mixing bowls are shoved into a tiny space, making it almost impossible to find what I needed without taking out half of the contents of the cabinet. And I need new measuring spoons and cups in the worst way – I haven’t bought any new stuff in about 8 years and a lot of my utensils have sort of disappeared through attrition.

It also doesn’t help that I only feel culinary when I have a lot of time off. Around the winter holidays, between Christmas and New Years, I become a baking queen. During the rest of the year, I avoid the kitchen like the plague – who has time after working all day, plus volunteering and doing whatever?

It really sucks that it is so hot – it rather limits our choices of what we can do. Usually I love walking around the museums of the Mall, or wandering around Old Town Alexandria, but neither of these is an option in this heat. It does not help that Mr. Random’s mom smokes like a chimney and doesn’t quite have the stamina to do much walking, even on cool days. We are going to an Ethiopian restaurant tonight – she’s willing to try it – which should be an interesting experience. My Dad is coming along with us, since my mom is out of town, so this should be super-interesting.

I am much more relaxed this week and am trying really hard not to think of all the work I have to do next week – when I do, it just gets me stressed out and upset. So I am trying to go with the flow as much as possible. I may even get off this computer and try to read a book . . . imagine that!


Merci said...

Doesn't it feel good to have your house in order? We got ours together recently, too, and I feel like a princess when I come home each night.

I love to cook, too, but more as a hobby, when the mood strikes. I don't especially feel like cooking after work or when it's hot, OR if there's a chance of eating out instead!

Virginia Gal said...

Isn't it funny that we humans clean when others are coming, why don't we do that for ourselves??

yes this heat is brutal, might I suggest a boat ride in the potomac or the botantical gardens near capital hill - nice COOL activities.