Saturday, March 31, 2007

spring break 07

i can say in all honesty, with not that much exaggeration, that our trip to florida this year was a life-changing experience. no, really.

but i'll get to that later. first, we dig:

okay, so that last one was plant-watering, not digging. but it's still yard work. and there had been digging, right before the watering, but i didn't get to the camera in time. if you're keeping score at home, that's 7 out of 14 days that there was digging. thankfully he was fine with nana as his digging partner....

we did manage to leave the yard a few days. one day we went back to the local playground, which still has this sign, which i've mentioned before:

plus a new one!

at the playground! and i don't think they're talking about squirrels, people. we didn't see any creatures, but still. i know there's some wacky wildlife down here in southern florida, but you really can't locate the playground somewhere that alligator warning signs wouldn't be necessary?

anyway, we tried to ignore the possibility of impending doom and concentrated instead on the certainty of impending nausea:

man, i shudder just looking at that thing. i still remember feeling dizzy and wrong for the rest of the day afer taking wile down it last year. but he's a big boy now! he can go down it himself!

yay! except that he wants me to go down after him, to share in the joy! not yay! i managed to limit my involvement to one slide down. nana may have had to go down twice. as it should be.

we also made it to a few baseball games. wile was way into it, but possibly even more fun than seeing jose and david wright and paul lo duca, the catcher, in his endlessly fascinating "gear" was the wiffleball game that they had set up for the kids on the walkway into the stadium. the bat was definitely taller than wile. but he rocked it, of course.

that's a sure double. totally. thankfully there weren't any other kids who wanted to play, and the 14-year-old running the booth was amused rather than annoyed with wile, so he got to take some really long turns, much to the amusement of all the people heading up the walkway, who were literally taking bets as to whether this tiny little thing was going to be able to get any hits with the him-sized bat. they didn't know who they were dealing with....

and at the last game we went to, with dada, things got even more exciting. there was a first-ever ballpark frank....

and the thing that wile had been asking for all through the other two games came to pass: jose signed his ball.

i still can't believe it. this sets the bar just a little bit high for the rest of his baseball-viewing career. oh, you want the most popular player on the team to sign your ball? the young, cute all-star, whose autograph everyone wants? sure, no problem. here you go!

we also drove up to casselbury for a visit with uncle nate:

and, of course, when you hang with uncle nate, this is how your day ends:

not. surprising. not even one litle bit.

alright, you say, sounds like a fun trip, but what was life-changing?

first: my mother has an electric stovetop. and....i liked it. this is after decades of bad-mouthing the electric stove. (yes, decades—i've been a cook since i was 12, and a critic since i was born.) but my experience has been with those nasty exposed-metal-coil monsters. the nana has one of those snazzy glass-top numbers, and it is really f-ing awesome to cook on. the heat is so even. all the pancakes cook at exactly the same rate! and it's consistent—every time you set it to 5, it's the same heat. unlike my gas stove, where i'm forever fiddling around with the knob, trying to find the exact spot around the 2 on the dial that will give me the same "2" heat that i had the last time i used it..... and the cleaning. the cleaning! it's a smooth, continuous glass surface! i know i sound like a total geek, but man. changed my whole perspective on things.....

second: my mother watches american idol. so i watched with her. and....i liked it. i take back everything bad i've ever said about it. that is some seriously entertaining shit right there. i'm in for the long haul now. go melinda and jordin! woo!

third: i'd been noticing for a while before we left for florida that wile's hair was looking a can i put this....forty-year-old alcoholic beach bum. when we got down to the sunshine state and the humidity put the curl back in to wile's hair, it became even more apparent that there was a problem:

you couldn't quite call it a mullet, but it was just as bad. there was this lovely hair—shiny, bouncy, silky ringlets—being suffocated by a layer of stringy, fried, frizzled mess. and so, the die was cast. the scissors were fetched. the hair: was cut.

wile seems happy with the result:

as stephen says, he looks like less of a wildman now. true. but instead, he looks kinda like a 14-year-old skater boy growing out his hair. can't argue with that.

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