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July 15, 2001
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10:48 pm: Another fairly packed day, though with less to do in it specific to a party or other people.

Jet only got up once last night, at 3:30, and he then slept from when we were done until 7. Too bad both John and I were really short on sleep to start, but we really enjoyed the respite. It would be really good if Jet went back to this schedule of only being up once a night.

We got up better rested than the last few days and John and I thought it would be fun to take the Brownlows to Lucille's, especially since one of their eventual destinations was New Orleans. When Isabel was only a few months old, they'd gone there for Mardi Gras. Baby dancing in the streets! They had loved the place, and definitely wanted to go there.

It took a while to get everything going. In fact, it took so long, we fed him most of a jar of sweet potatoes while we waited, so he wouldn't get hungry while we were eating. We're so used to just picking Jet up and just going wherever we want at whatever pace we want, and it was mildly sobering to watch the process needed to get Isabel to agree with going out the door. Once out, though, it was kind of cool to see her buckle herself into her car seat, and see her going under her own power. There are benefits to independence, too.

We'll be there too, someday. Both with the long negotiations and with the physical independence.

Once there, we had beignets and Isabel got her pieces of the hot donuts mounded with powdered sugar. She abandoned it happily when her breakfast came, though, very impressive that a breakfast of French Toast, eggs, and bacon could so easily lure her away from a mountain of sugar. She really did like eating her breakfast, too, when she got to it. Jet watched it all like some benign Buddha boy, sleeping at first, but then, just reclining in his car seat with his hands on his knees. He accepted a frog sticker on his forehead and little ladybugs all over his feet without complaint, though, eventually, the ladybugs came right off as his feet were sweating enough to cause them to just fall off.

I had the Carlin County, spicy sausage gravy on a crisp on the outside and super tender on the inside biscuit with a smooth pool of grits and a chunky pile of red beans with lots of meat. I also had a large grapefruit juice and lots of decaf coffee. I've been drinking decaf ever since we got back from Seattle, the dark decaf Colombian Victor had roasted was smooth and mellow and rich with flavor. I really enjoy it each morning even without the caffeine buzz.

It was a long, leisurely breakfast, and we had to be a little careful of the sunshine as we were eating out on the terrace. We got done just as Jet was getting antsy again, so I took him to the Baby Buggy and changed him and gave him a snack while the other four went for a walk in the summer day to a park right near the restaurant. John came back and he and I drove over to the park when Jet was done. Jet was mildly distracted by the heat and by being in the car, but he ate for about twenty minutes all told before just stopping.

So we went to the park and watched Isabel and Paul play for a while in the shaded playground. The park was beautiful, with velvet fine grass, lots of tall, old trees that shaded the grass so that it could grow, and a large sandlot that was filled with swings and all kinds of other playground toys.

John took Jet and set his feet on the grass. Jet looked mildly dubious but then started gripping the grass with his toes. That was funny to see.

From the park we went to the cheese shop and went a little wild. I got aged cheddar and some British cheddar as well as a bit of Pecarino Romano. I wanted to see if I could tell the difference between Romano and Parmesan. Sacrilege to not be sure I knew, I know, but it would be good to experience the two side by side.

Paul loved the place. He'd been to France, and he'd recognized the painted street address on the front of the building and was very impressed with the Frenchness of the interior as well as the wares themselves. All the cheeses, breads, and good olive oils, vinegars and other things. From his experiences it was very French inside, and he took pictures for his mother, whom he said would have bought everything in the place if she could have been there. They really enjoyed the visit, and we were really glad that we took them there.

From there we headed home. Both Isabel and Jet were tired, as was John. John and Paul went out to the van to trace an electrical problem while I fed Jet on our bed. When they had found the problem and fixed it, John came in, lay down and was instantly asleep. Jet fell asleep while on me, so I tucked him in his car seat, which was in the room, and then I rolled into my half of the bed and went to sleep, too. I got half an hour until Jet woke up crying.

I took Jet into the bathroom with me, quieted him and brushed my teeth and then Jet and I went out into the livingroom to play. Paul and Deirdre and Isabel had been very quiet this whole time. They'd been playing either downstairs or outside. It was really strange, for me at least, to watch them actually sunbathing outside! In this intense sunshine it seemed an invitation to a sunburn, but they were out there right in the heat of it all. I should probably have said more about the altitude dangers; but they really wanted the sunshine.

Isabel came in looking rather badly burned, but she was cheerful and happy and mostly wanted to play with Jet, and later in the evening she looked much better. So I probably worried too much.

The afternoon was mostly playing and keeping quiet so that John could sleep. Eventually he did wake up, and Jet was really tired after nursing but he refused to take a nap in his crib. So I had him in the crib with his toys and I tried to do a few things on the computers; but just kept getting interrupted. I hadn't written yesterday's entry completely, and was trying to get it done. John took over with Jet and let me write. That was very nice.

Around 5 or so I made the dough for the sticky pecan rolls, and right when I was done Jet was fussing for food, so we nursed. Then Deirdre had pointed out a really simple recipe for pasta, that just involved broiling tomatoes until they were a little charred, and then tossing them with garlic, olive oil, and a lot of fresh basil. Salt, pepper, and sugar were then added to taste. We spooned it over cooked spaghetti and that was that. We had the baguette I'd bought with goat cheese they'd bought, and lots of sugar snap peas and cucumber slices with a bit of salad dressing.

It was a wonderful dinner. I had to feed Jet when it was done, and then I shaped the cinnamon rolls with Isabel watching and asking questions about every step of the process. That was kind of fun, all in all.

Jet, in the meantime, was doing a lot of sitting with John. He's been doing a lot more of it since we got home from Seattle, and he's been getting stronger each day. Tonight, he was just sitting there with John's legs and arms surrounding him, but not touching, and he was pretty much sitting on his own, with mildly wild balance; but definitely with some balance. I had fun taking some pictures of him with John.

When I was done with that, I fed Jet his last feeding, and John took him for the bottle. Then Jet pretty much passed out right in John's arms, and went upstairs to sleep. We all had some ice cream, and then talked a while for Paul and Deirdre to say good-bye to John because John was leaving in the morning for an all day off-site. Joan's going to take Jet for four hours tomorrow, which will mean that I will get everything done for my presentation tomorrow. That will be very good indeed. When I'm done with what it is that I have to do, I'll be able to nap without any guilt at all.

The Browlows will be leaving in the morning and will mostly stay out of our way, which should be good, all in all. I imagine they'll have the time for sticky rolls.

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