One Fabulous Thing

…because each day has at least one.

03.31.2010 Flood Day April 4, 2010

Filed under: Food,Weather — onefabulousthing @ 8:34 pm

Usually in this neck of the woods, we have snow days. Today, due to the unprecedented amount of rain that has fallen over the past few days so close on the heels of our last big rainstorm, we had a flood day. Large sections of the major highway in Rhode Island were closed, making it essentially impossible to get into the city from where we live.

It felt really strange, staying home despite clear skies and moderate temperatures. I tried to get some work done from home, and for you to understand what that must have been like for me I want you to go strap 20 pounds worth of those animatronic flowers and Santa Clauses and whatnot that sing and wriggle with the slightest noise or movement onto your leg, enlist a hyperactive dog to dance around your feet and manage to put himself exactly where you want to step, find a cat to dip a paw in every glass of water you try to set down and shake it all over your papers, and get someone to go round and ring your doorbell with a package you need to sign for at the exact moment someone calls you with an important work matter to sort out.

So of course, I decided that it was a good day to make Minestrone Soup in the slow cooker and some Honey Wheat Bread in the breadmaker. It is actually less crazy than you think, since the soup was essentially put together bit by bit around naptime and a few enchanting minutes spent emptying all of the unlocked cabinets of their contents. The bread was a little trickier, but as long as you keep the yeast away from the wet ingredients it can also sit for a bit before starting up the process.

By the end of the day, when my husband got home (after driving all around the state to get back here) and my son had had just about enough of his stinky old mama, it was fantastic to have dinner already done. I pulled the bread from the breadmaker and we ate it still warm with bowls of the soup. Don’t ask how much work I got done.

So, Fabulous Thing #90: Putting my convenience appliances to good use.

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03.30.2010 What Didn’t Happen April 1, 2010

Filed under: Weather — onefabulousthing @ 9:29 pm

Today, I wasn’t here:

and this isn’t my street:

and that’s not my car:

and even though we are wet and tired, we are all safe and sound. Today, that’s pretty fabulous.

So, Fabulous Thing #89: Surviving the Rhode Island Flood.

 

03.20.2010 First Day of Spring March 21, 2010

Filed under: Family,Style,Weather — onefabulousthing @ 9:09 pm

The first day of spring found my son and I on the beach before lunchtime. We headed to the paint store in the morning, where a lovely and knowledgeable woman helped me select the appropriate products for painting the wood trim in our house as part of my Spring Cure efforts, then carried the things out to my car for me so I could wrangle the kid.

After that, we poked around a consignment store and found a Raggedy Ann and Andy toybox on wheels that should be helpful in decluttering his room, with the added bonuses of adding a retro touch to the decor and saving one thing from the landfill.

Next stop was supposed to be a gardening store to pick up some soil to start seeds, but my son’s patience was wearing thin. Because I am a lucky duck, our route home from errands passes right by the town beach. It was such a gorgeous day I decided to pull in and see if the baby wanted to feel the sand in his toes for a while. He did.

I happened to have my camera in my purse in case I saw any home furnishings that inspired me, but it turned out my inspiration today was less stationary and more sandy.

We stood holding hands at the edge of the water, and let the icy cold waves lap at our toes. Two very nice girls watched my purse and our shoes. My son made a beeline for some other child’s shovel and pail, and I made a mental note to get him his own as soon as possible.

At home the windows were all open. The baby ate his sunflower seed butter and jelly sandwich with a small side of sand, then crashed for a nap. When my husband got home from golfing and the baby woke up, we went for a walk around the neighborhood and talked about very important things and very silly things.

Back at home, the baby went down for bed and I cooked dinner. There were pastries for dessert. We didn’t go to bed too late.

Welcome, spring.

So, Fabulous Thing #79: I can’t find one thing about today that wasn’t fabulous.

 

03.15.2010 Rush March 18, 2010

Filed under: Weather — onefabulousthing @ 8:46 pm

In my area, there has been a lot of rain over the past few days. A lot of rain. On my way to work this morning, I saw an office building that looked like it was sitting, partially submerged, in the middle of a lake. There was a traffic slowdown on that section of highway as hundreds of morning commuters were jarred out of autopilot by this improbable sight.

There is something that an almost-spring rain brings that was present today. A certain smell of earth reawakening, a softness in the big drops that makes you think of the verdant, growing things that are to come. There was a little bit of a thrill that ran through all of the conversations about the weather,speaking to a hint of danger in what is normally unremarkable.

For lunch, I took a business associate to that place I love so much. When we drove into the area I noticed that the bridge over the river nearby was filled with people. We got out of the car and peered over one side to see the effects of all the rain. What was normally a slow-moving river had been turned into churning rapids under the bridge, and the water level was high enough to make me second-guess parking my car on the bridge. Looking over the opposite side, we saw boats bobbing in the harbor. The other people on the bridge had cell phone cameras out, taking pictures and short video clips of the show that the river was putting on.

Thinking about that made me happy for the rest of the day. It wasn’t a fight, or a celebrity flashing her unmentionables, or a train wreck that was attracting their attention – it was a river, swollen with rain and rushing under the bridge beneath their feet.

So, Fabulous Thing #74: Paying attention to Mother Nature.

 

03.06.2010 Here Comes The Sun March 7, 2010

Filed under: Weather — onefabulousthing @ 7:51 pm

Almost two years ago, my husband and I walked down an aisle to Here Comes The Sun, originally by The Beatles, but played in the style of The Acoustic Duo by my stepfather and uncle. I mention this because it is the soundtrack that was playing in my head throughout the day today, as we tentatively and then joyfully opened up the windows, left our coats at home, and reveled in the warm rays. It was at least 45 degrees. At least.

It’s all a matter of perspective. In October, 45 degrees would have found us huddled indoors, sure that Sweater Weather had arrived and would be staying. In early March, 45 degrees is practically summer. The last ten days of rain erased any remaining traces of snow (like how I turned that lemon into lemonade?) so it was easy to let spring into my heart as I drove past the beach on my way to the market and saw the parking lots full of people out to stretch their legs, let their dogs run, and take advantage of the surf.

I didn’t have to hustle in and out of the store, hunched over against the cold. I didn’t dread putting the groceries away in the chest freezer out in the garage. I rolled the windows down for a minute on the way home from the store, but it was a little chilly for that. Too soon. We went for a walk before dinner, my husband and the baby and I. The joy at being OUTSIDE was bubbling over in our neighborhood as passersby waved and smiled at the baby and us, even people in cars. Granted, he is freaking adorable, but it went beyond that. It was like everyone was emerging from hibernation all at once, unclenching our muscles and relaxing into the coming season.There are discernible buds on the trees, and there are some green shoots poking up around the tree in our front yard.

Probably we are letting our guard down too soon, and we might get knocked down with one last snow storm. But the end is in sight, and today allowed us to at least remember that it will be warm again. I think it is around this time every year that I remember why I still live in New England.

So, Fabulous Thing #65: Letting the sunshine in.

 

01.25.2010 With Hey, Ho, The Wind and the Rain January 25, 2010

Filed under: Weather — onefabulousthing @ 10:45 pm

My office is in an old industrial building that has been converted to modern office space, with the huge windows, soaring ceilings, and temperamental wiring that comes along with that. I am lucky enough to have been upgraded to a corner office with a lot of those huge windows, but on the circuit that perpetually blows. I have managed to rig it so my computer is on a different circuit, but my desk phone and lights are often sacrificed to the whims of the weather and the HR woman’s space heater.

Today found me sitting in my office, in a good groove with completing some projects I’ve had on deck for a while (how satisfying it is to have all the right data to fill into a spreadsheet for once!), lit only by the glow of my computer screen. The skies were deliciously dark in the early afternoon, the wind gusting, the rain lashing the windows. There were flash flood warnings, and there was thunder. The severity of the weather was a little thrilling and a little unexpected. Where I live I would have expected a whispering snowfall today, not a booming rainstorm. It felt so cozy to sit there, protected from the elements while listening to the storm rage.

Collecting the baby from daycare was an adventure – pant cuffs sopping wet, confused kid wrapped up like a burrito in a mad dash to the car because the umbrella would have been useless in the wind. When we made it to the car I hopped in back to get him settled in his seat, and we took a moment first to say hello and look at the world outside. My son looked at me with his little palm upturned, his way of asking what’s going on. I gave him the words for rain, and wind, and pointed out the sounds that go with each. He put his hand on the window, and slowly tilted his head over until his cheek was resting against mine. We stayed like that for a minute, watching the storm, our breath fogging up the windows.

As we drove home, I was reminded of one of the many details that my husband has made up along the way about the mysterious past of our rescue dog: his favorite song.

So, Fabulous Thing #25: Unexpected moments, courtesy of the weather.