Phil and I celebrated our 10-year anniversary this weekend. I
think this is pretty fantastic, and I attribute it to us both being extraordinarily stubborn individuals.
On our actual anniversary, April 1st, Phil brought home ten roses (1) and then we took each other out to dinner (2) at Crave
(1) They were actually selling roses by the 10-pack. We can only guess that they needed to increase profits but didn't want to raise prices for a bouquet--so they took two roses out of the classic dozen. But it made it the perfect number!
(2) He chose the restaurant, and it was a surprise, but we paid with the credit card, so I'll eventually end up paying for it. Ah, well. It feels like I haven't gone out in ages.
(3) Yes, the restaurant in the Mall of America. It is possible that there was some, "Wait, you actually
want to go out on our anniversary?" on the day of. Also some issue with his work blocking most restaurants' websites, making the figuring out of a restaurant and a reservation difficult. So a coworker recommended it.
The overall ambiance was not so great. We got seated out on the balcony area, which meant we were basically eating in
the mall, but it was a lot less noisy than inside the restaurant, so we were able to talk at all. Pluses and minuses! Some of the food was fantastic. We split a bunch of orders. The rosemary herb bread? Amazing! The hand-cut fries with truffle butter? Crack-tastic! Worth a special trip. The grilled Caesar salad? The grilled flavor was interesting, but I think I'd prefer a more classic Caesar. The pasta with wild mushrooms, bacon, and chicken? Should have had more mushrooms, less chicken, and any
bacon. Not that it wasn't good--it was fine, it just wasn't amazing. The chai creme brulee? I was too full to try. Sorrow. Phil had a fizzy bottle of pink sake, and I had a virgin mojito with blueberries. I gotta say--these days I'm really happy with any menu that actually includes interesting
On Saturday afternoon, we had the first BBQ of the season to celebrate with friends. The weather cooperated with a pretty nice sunny 50 degree+ day. It made me happy to have a chance to hang out and talk with a couple dozen friends. There were burgers and chips and pretzel thingies and cinnamon rolls and pasta salad and pickles and Izzy soda and other wonderful things. And a hammock and bocce ball! (Phil thinks he can fix the Xmas lights pretty easily by reconnecting the string in a different order.) Things wound up around 2 and wound down around 7, as it started to get cold out. And now Phil has a cooler full of beer(4) and we have burgers and veggie burgers for grilling for later in the summer(5).
(4) Which he can't just drink. He's still taking pretty heavy daily doses of ibuprofen to deal with the swelling and joint pain of Mystery Illness, so he's not supposed to tax his liver with booze.
(5) And we can store them in our new deep freeze! That was our Christmas/anniversary gift from the in-laws. I don't really know what to do with it, but I'm excited to have it.
There was a mad scramble to clean before the party (and after), particularly since I had to work all morning at the senior sitting job. By all morning, I mean beginning at 7 AM that Saturday. I am still amazed that I did not fall asleep at my own party.
I've pretty much been working regular hours, meaning 40+, between NgithOwl and the senior sitting. I have to leave NgithOwl early on Thursdays to get to the senior sitting job, but it balances out with the usual weekend work. But there was no weekend work needed at NgithOwl on our anniversary! And on the days when there is no NgithOwl work but I need to get to the senior center, I can just bike up to Bryant, which is a nice short bike ride and very convenient. (I figured out that I can't bus and bike to NgithOwl as I usually do in the summers, because my bike weighs much too much for me to be allowed to lift it, and putting a bike on the bus bike racks involves real lifting. Sadness. But then again, that's the crazier part of town to bike in, so I'm probably safer not doing it anyway.)
It might be quieter at NgithOwl now, but I've earned enough to pull us most of the way out of the financial hole that no work for four months put us in.
I've also been wrastling with paperwork (including figuring out that a toaster oven warranty was not worth using, because it would cost us lots just to send the darn thing in and get it back, and there was no guarantee of fixing or replacement--stupid fake warranty--so no toaster for us), and setting up stuff for my baby showers (one in Minnesota, one in Wisconsin).
Between working on writingy stuff at the senior sitting job and my hour of writing minimum, the writing proceeds apace. Circus of Brass and Bone Writing LogTotalEpisode 11
And Episode 11 is complete! Thanks to a convenient ending hook that I hadn't planned in advance.New words:
Colt Navy revolverType of scene:
a hive of scum and villainyChallenge(s):
Not getting in my own way when I'm feeling a scene.Which line is it anyways?He didn't know of any ladies who filed their teeth like that!Researched:
tooth sharpening (gah! too many junk links on the internets!), sailing ships, major arteries in the human body, Civil War-era weaponryNotes:
An interesting side-benefit of the daily no-matter-what writing hour seems to be that my story is "living" more in my mind, even when I'm not writing. This can be distracting and frustrating when I'm not in circumstances to write when a scene starts playing, but it's also good for figuring out plot kinks ahead of time.Other writingy stuff:
* Posted last writing log and freewriting
* 10 Ways to Start Your Story Better: http://writersdigest.com/article/10-ways-to-start-your-story-better/?et_mid=245443&rid=2957480
* A great wrap-up of “how to live” advice for artists: http://www.austinkleon.com/2011/03/30/how-to-steal-like-an-artist-and-9-other-things-nobody-told-me/
* Finished redmarking The Iron Dragon Dilemma, and figured out how to fix the plot. Probably another 1,000 words of writing in there. Gah. Story will be so loooong.
* Modern handgun basics for writers: http://www.sff.net/people/sanders/rrdws2.html