Recommended wine for today’s entry: Today I cleaned out my magazine stack/tower, and found a favorite old Food & Wine magazine from May 2008…and, in it, the “30 Top Pinot Noirs.” Among them, a reasonably priced California offering: a 2006 Hayman & Hill Santa Lucia Highlands Reserve Selection, listed at $15 a scant 15 months ago.
Another wine note: A new reader, Mary (welcome, Mary!), has requested some critiques of box wines. I’m game … anyone up for a tasting? We can make a night of it. I’m serious – there are some pretty good wines in boxes nowadays. Louisville-based readers, let me know. We’ll set it up. I get to sniff the spigots, though.
There is a graph in my head: As children get older, their milestones dive bomb. This is why we have movies of our kids until, oh, about age … 10? Maybe 12?
Then, unless you want film clips of the belligerent eye-rolling, hands on hips, “I hate you” moments, you retire the camera to the outdated electronics closet, where it huddles with the dead-beyond-resuscitation cell phones and the 8-track player with the non-extractable Boston tape.
Know what I mean? A kid’s important achievements and discoveries seem to be packed into the first decade. Taking the baby home from the hospital, her first smile, rollover, crawl, set of stitches, day of school … right? In the first ten years, the milestones come fast and furious and you’re constantly pulling out the video camera to forever commemorate the thrill of a great gymnastics meet or softball tournament or awards day at school. Or the misery and hideousness of a grueling case of chicken pox.
Then the milestones slow to crawl, which is good, because about the time my youngest was ten, I melted the video camera on the stove. I still contend that this was not my fault – the power was off for about five days. Before the power went off, I was apparently cooking something. (I think it was water for ice tea.) Then, in the ensuing dark, dark days, we must’ve used the camera to videotape some of the family’s knock-down, drag-out fights that usually start on day 3 of no power. When finished, I put the camera back where it belongs: on the front right burner. Then, when the power came back on …
We did get a new camera. I’m not allowed to play with it. But we really didn’t need to, because except for a few Christmas mornings, we never take movies anymore. And if we do, someone flips off or cusses at the camera person (that would not be me, if you’re following carefully.)
But there’s another whole line of milestones that no one ever writes down in baby books. We don’t have movies of them. But they are just as important as rolling over.
I’m sure you had this kind too: The times when your children discovered that maybe, just maybe, mom wasn’t always telling the whole truth.
Am I the only one that remembers the first time my child learned that you can make pancakes and waffles at home?
Wow. When I woke up that morning, I had no idea the changes that were about to take place.
One day, she’s perfectly thrilled with Eggos, then you let her spend the night at a friend’s house and BOOM…she’s ruined. Comes home talking about “Did you know Alex’s mom makes pancakes on her stove? And did you know you can put chocolate chips in them? Or bananas?” It took about a year of Sunday mornings to convince her that our stove was different from Alex’s and so we’d just have to stick to Eggos.
Or the first time your child finds out that dinner can include more than two items? I know. You never thought it would happen, but it did.
For me, that was another fine mess brought on by a do-gooder mother who was being nice to my child. My youngest pops into the car after a fifth-grade sleepover and says, “You are NOT gonna believe this. Her mom made dinner. For all of us (there were three kids spending the night.) She made pork chops and put a piece of pineapple on top.”
I rolled my eyes. Here it comes. “So I s’pose now you want dad to make you pork chops?” I asked, praying the rest of the story was about how she hated them.
“Wait, mom, I wasn’t done. They also had broccoli AND corn pudding AND salad.”
I had to stop the car and take deep breaths. This lady had messed up my child but good.
“…AND bread AND dessert. Dessert, mom! It was amazing! It was like Thanksgiving! Except with more food!”
I vowed never to mess with another mom’s child that way. And I’m proud to say, I’ve stuck to it.
Undoubtedly, you remember them too – the day your child realized that there is soup outside the Campbell’s can? Or green beans in the produce section? That a can of mandarin oranges isn’t as good as a fresh one that requires peeling? What about the day they find out that it isn’t really illegal to stay at the park for more than an hour?
Hmm. I guess it’s all a part of growing up. But I sure do miss the days when I sat them in their high chairs, opened a can of green beans and Spaghetti-Os and then let the dogs lick them clean afterward. Those were the days, my friend.
Oh, don’t get me wrong. I know they’re too old for the high chairs. Besides, the metal parts got all rusty from the dog spit.