Sunday, June 12, 2011

Grandparents Visit

Finally, my parents found time in their busy schedules to visit. Yeah, I'm complaining! Mostly because they promised to be here for 4 days, but then changed everything to just 2 and a half days. So I feel that I'm totally within my rights here to kvetch loudly.

I dunno about your folks, but when my 'rents are in town, they tend to be very busy along the gender lines. My mom takes over the kitchen and the garden. My dad takes over the yard and the couch. This, by the way, is not a complaint, but a sincere appreciation.

I mean, c'mon, here are two senior citizens (at least by Kohl's standards) who first barrel down I-95 (Dad's always behind the wheel and he tends to interpret "95" as the speed limit), then unload a ton of goodies (mostly food stuff, but this time also a mattress and a couple of very heavy IKEA bookcases). Then they spend 1-2-3 days working before climbing back into the car for a return trip. But not until they write us a check (I s'pose for time well-spent).

Anyway, this time around Mom brought lotsa plants for the garden, mostly herbs. So we planted those. And Dad spent the morning hours (when it wasn't too hot) cutting down the bushes 'cause that's where we want to put our expanded veggie garden and a fruit "orchard" next year.

We also made shashliki, a summer-time Russian tradition. As most other Russian dishes, it's extremely labor-intensive. This is no burger-flipping! This takes time, skill and patience - from marinating the meat (no store-bought marinade either) to building a fire, to actual roasting.

Consequently, no drinking happens while the process is, well, in process. Here you see my hubby is taking a beer break while chatting with his favorite mother-in-law. And his favorite father-in-law is patiently explaining the finer points of the roasting process to M. M loves this and is all ears. Cooking on the open fire is quite possibly his biggest love (after Star Wars that is).

While M is too little to rotate the skewers, he's contributing to the work process by using some fresh herbs to sprinkl the meat with some white wine (yeah, I know, this sounds weird - white wine with lamb, but it does work).

Another thing we did was picking blueberries with Grandma. We went to Smith's Nursery on a very hot day (after helping Grandpa with cutting down the bushes). Luckily, they loaned us a little wagon for M (it's a bit of a hike to the blueberry field although of course if you want to, you can drive there as well, but where's the fun in that?!)

Archemedes said "Give me a lever long enough and I'll move the world". To which I say "Let my parents visit long enough and I'll finish all my unfinished projects" (which, if you were to take a peek at my to-do list, is way more impressive of a feat than moving the world. For real.)

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