Monday, February 10, 2014

Chick Weekend

We made it. The "Year of Firsts" is over. There was a strange feeling of accomplishment. We survived.
Steele had signed up to do a century ride in Palm Springs (100 miles!) so we planned a chick weekend for us girls. A little crafting, baking, new recipes chick movies. We had so much planned that we made our own three day weekend kicking it off on Friday.
After lunch at El Zarape it was time to try our first new recipe: Cookies & Cream cookies. They turned out to be pretty good. They seemed a little salty to me. These were plated up and taken to a memorial service. 
Mom has been wanting to try our new favorite Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese. Ultimate comfort food with less fat than typical mac & cheese. Steele thought it sounded gross, so we waited for him to not be around. He did eat the leftovers and thought it was good!

Saturday dawned bright and beautiful! We took tulips down to the cemetery. Only a few tears were shed.
Lunch at El Indio where we ran into Grandma! Imagine that. Then back to her house for a little Liverpool Rummy.
Craft time!! It looks like Valentine's Day threw up on the table. We made oodles of valentines to be delivered.
Along with all the hearts and doilies I simultaneously was baking mini cupcakes to go with the valentines.
Dinner time found me back in the kitchen. D.D. saw this idea on Pinterest. Cook cornbread in the waffle iron and pour chili on top. Homemade chili. Sooooo good! We'll certainly be making these again.
Sunday was Taco Sunday at Grandma's. Yum! And Steele came home. I baked a cake. We spent some time the four of us before D.D. and I headed back to La-La land.
I'm so lucky to have the family I do. I'm grateful for the memories we have and for the memories we continue to make.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Innocence Lost

Last weekend I watched The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas for the first time. I was warned that it was an emotional movie. I know it's a few years old, but somehow I never make it to the movies. While the story is sad, the movie itself is so beautiful. I was struck immediately with the music, the lighting and cinematography.
And this little boy, Bruno played by Asa Butterfield. His eyes. His range of emotion. I found myself making the journey with him. I recalled my own childhood experiences when I first encountered evil and tried making sense of it. I remember when I took things at face value without looking for hidden meaning or underling causes.

I love the sweet assumptions made by Bruno about the "people living on the farm" who were "wearing their pajamas." What else would a child think? How could he imagine what cruelty was being inflicted upon fellow human beings? You can tangibly feel his confusion as he tries to reconcile his new-found wisdom about the camp and the role his father plays in running it. Bruno just wants to read adventure stories, and he believes in his own ability to do heroic things. He hatches a plan with Shmuel to sneak into the camp to help him find his missing father.
I don't write about every movie I see, but this had such a profound impact on me. It really is told through the eyes of a child and miraculously guides you through Bruno's path of discovery. And while the adult you is transported back to your childhood, you never truly forget what life and perspective have taught you. Bruno is still mostly innocent, taking things as they come, and your adult heart is breaking because you know the final outcome.

As the closing credits rolled, with tears streaming down my face, I said to myself, "I'm glad I've seen it, but I never have to watch it again." But the images and theme have stuck with me. So before I return the movie back to my brother I want to watch it again, to feel the innocence and simplicity I remember from childhood.