Friday, January 20, 2012

Strange Week

I am having difficulties getting my mind around everything that happened this week so I think the easiest way to parse it is to go day by day.

1. Friday (last week, duh) - Marshall and I received many generous gifts for Christmas, much in the way of cash, so we indulged in an evening out that included dinner and a movie. One of our favorite babysitters was available (before she went back to college this week) so she came by and we whisked away to the fine dining establishment of Applebee's (ha!) and then to see Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, which was awesome! It is rare for me to want to see a movie more than once in the theatre, but this is now on my list. Go Brad Bird! And Jeremy Renner was even better than advertised. I really must see him in The Town now. If you were foolish enough to skip watching The Unusuals in the spring of 2009 (which, since it was canceled so unceremoniously, you probably did) you should try to find it on DVD. Renner absolutely steals the show and made me a life-long fan.

2. Saturday - I started the day with a date with my father to see Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and then a nice lunch out, just the two of us. Now, if you haven't read the book (I'm in line currently to check it out of the library) or seen the Alec Guinness series from 1979, you have no hope of understanding this film, so don't bother. Since I recently watched the original series, I followed the action just fine and enjoyed the film. All the critics are right: Gary Oldman is amazing. I heard part of his interview on Fresh Air on Friday which only deepened my interest in the film.

Then I came home for an hour or two, welcomed a different but also wonderful babysitter into the house and then Marshall and I went off to my parents' house for a lovely dinner party with friends from church. It was delightful, both the company and the food.

3. Sunday was the usual morning church service and then home in the afternoon, where I planned and rested up for Youth Group in the evening. I showed my small group clips from a modern version of Pride & Prejudice that came out in 2003 and I caught on Showtime during one of those free pay cable months. It gave us a great jumping off point to talk about why women love romance stories and how women are wired for love. It led to a lively discusssion, but a good one.

While I was lying around Sunday afternoon, I finished The Ultimate Book of Gangster Movies. I was originally intrigued by the book after listening to the interview on Radio Times but didn't feel tremendously enlightened after reading it. I guess I wanted to discover why gangster movies are so popular and while I have a better technical understanding of why, it doesn't make me a fan of them. I have seen The Godfather movies and Pulp Fiction (a movie which I particularly despise) but didn't find the process of watching those films to be life-changing. In fact, I prefer Infernal Affairs to The Departed, which, apparently is unusual for a gringa but places me within a wide-ranging disagreement in the film fan world. In fact, the only movie I want to see after reading the book is The Killer, an early film by John Woo, a director of which I am already a fan. Still, it is an interesting book for film fans and written in a very conversational style. And you don't have to read it cover to cover like I did but only read about the movies in which you are curious.

4. Monday - My darling husband played "Fun Dad" on Monday and took the children off to the Delaware Museum of Natural History to meet their cousins there and see the dinosaur bones together. One of the great things about the DelMNH is that they have a reciprocal agreement with other museums, like the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, which has a visiting Giant Mysterious Dinosaur exhibit at the moment, which I also heard about on Radio Times, that I think my children will enjoy.

So, on my day off (essentially), I went to PT and then met a friend for lunch at Panera's. I came home about 3 o'clock feeling refreshed and ready to see my children again, after taking most of the weekend off from parenting duties. And even though Marshall was at church for a meeting during the evening, the children were happy and calm and went to bed almost painlessly. It made Tuesday morning rather shocking to our systems, though.

5. Tuesday - We did not start the day well. I woke up with a seriously aching ankle (too much driving and running around Monday afternoon) and so wasn't in the best mood to motivate Alex to get ready for his 8:45 am bus and then push Miranda into the car to drag her off to MOPS with me. After MOPS, I dropped Miranda off at school and came home to spend all afternoon on the couch with my foot up, catching up on all the paperwork-type things (postcards for small group, attendance records for YM, etc.) I usually did on Monday mornings. I worked for about 4 hours straight, with a few breaks for Words with Friends games, of course. I got a lot done but I haven't lost the feeling that losing Monday (taking the day off, essentially) has made me feel like I'm behind in everything for the rest of the week.

6.. Wednesday - My women's Bible study group started up again and it was a joy to reconnect with all of my friends and get excited about the new study. Miranda had a good time with her friends in the "baby class" (which is what she calls the nursery), did some laps around the sanctuary, and was dropped off at school again. My mother came with me and was kind enough to drive us, to spare my still-healing ankle.

7. Thursday - My mother leaves for California on Monday to visit family and go spend a couple of weeks cuddling her new grand-daughter. And, given how darling and beautiful my new neice is, can you blame her?

So yesterday my mother and I had a nice lunch at TGIFriday's and then did a shopping blitz from Wegman's to GNC, Petsmart, Joann's Fabrics and Costco.

On the technological front, Marshall has been working on our new DVR/server to get it ready for another visit by a Comcast technician tomorrow morning in the hopes that we can finally say good-bye to Vonage and Directv. I love upgrades; really. Even when they go like this.

And here's Jen.


Leona Raisin said...

If I had your schedule I'd be overwhelmed. AND you squeeze in games of Words With Friends. Wouldn't it be great if your challenger played 'over' and you could add on a 'whelm'? Words With Friends is a great way to pass the time. Better than watching TV. … WHAT AM I SAYING! … There’s nothing better than TV, but I’ve come up with a great way to build your WWF skills and have fun with TV trivia at my blog. Let me know what you think of it.

Lindse94 said...

Miranda's baby friend is always happy to see her, too bad we forgot to come down for laps afterwards. I think it looks like life is good for you even though busy! That is one cute baby! Congrats and safe travels to your mom.

Omar said...

"Infernal Affairs" is better than "The Departed." That's a fact. The view of human nature in Scorsese's version is much bleaker AND the movie is too long. It didn't need to be longer than the original by 45 minutes. The Hong Kong version is taut, clean storytelling.

And if you like John Woo, "The Killer" is a must. That is one of the great early Chow Yun-Fat movies!