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September 6, 2001
two years ago

Celebration

8:37 pm: Jet has become really mobile. He makes it from one end of the eight foot long sheepskin to the other in nearly no time at all. Joan said that she'd noticed that he was getting more and more mobile and that she'd have to get a gate up soon to keep him in the livingroom. I hadn't thought it was that urgent until I took him home, put him on the sheepskin and found him well past the edge of it when I came back with his diaper bag.

He's reaching for things he wants to play with and managing to get his whole body into the effort. It's not really crawling or just rolling, but a combination of stretching, rolling, and just plain scrabbling and he's where he wants to be. It's pretty impressive.

Jet also has made a new game of passing a cloth back and forth over his face and from hand to hand. He seems to really enjoy the world appearing and disappearing and being a little scared whenever the cloth covers his face and breathing. It's funny because his breathing gets faster and faster while he's playing, but he keeps doing it to himself.

He also did really great at The Cheesecake Factory this evening, sitting in a high chair and only occasionally banging his head against the seat or the table, playing with toys, and eating bits of banana from a funny child's snack plate they gave us with our bread basket. I was mildly impressed that they gave kid appetizers of banana slices, orange slices, and thin slices of bread. Someone's thinking in their management, given the boom in babies lately. Jet loved getting mashed bits of banana from our fingertips, he was too small for the other food, but in a year or two, they're things he might well like.

We were there to celebrate. I also wanted to try their sliders. I got an order of sliders since they were only about five bucks. I also wanted something vegetable, and didn't want a whole salad, but I saw the Thai lettuce wraps and it had cool ingredients like bean sprouts, carrots, rice noodles, and pickles as well as three dipping sauces. I didn't see that it had chicken as well. It was cheaper than a lot of the salads, so I got that as well, thinking it would be a yummy vegetable plate to go with the sliders. I know, I know, most people don't combine sliders and Thai food, but since they were available on the pretty keen Cheesecake Factory menu, I thought I'd take advantage, John got a Thai style curry with chicken and shrimp on rice.

Everything was huge. The sliders were significantly bigger than White castle hamburgers, they were actually just like mini cheeseburgers on buns the size of a baseball. They had been charbroiled, the buns toasted, and the onions had been grilled. They actually were really good with the pickle chips they were served with. The server asked me if I wanted fries with them, and if I had said yes, I would have had plenty for a meal right there. Wow.

The lettuce wraps were really good, too, with big chunks of marinated breast meat that were a lot like satay with lots of peanuts on them. The meat went really well with all the other ingredients in perfectly round leaves of bib lettuce that was crisp and fresh. All the vegetables were crisp and clean and they crunched marvelously in the lettuce wrapped around it. They also had some really yummy sweet and sour pickled cucumber bits. It was just really refreshing. I was sad that I couldn't eat it all as it, too, would have made a full meal in and of itself.

Kathy likes The Cheesecake Factory a lot, and I can see why. The great thing is that the Boulder branch of the chain is never full, so we usually just go in and walk to a table. There's a little reverse snobbery going on in Boulder with this, but I won't complain. The ones in San Diego are always so full it's hard to get in, as the one in downtown Denver was. So I'm glad that locally we can just walk in and get a table.

We were celebrating the fact that we'd just lowered our payments on the house so that we could pay them with our part time salaries. We'd just gone and signed the refinancing papers, and we're all set. Since we're living on so much less income with both of us on part time, we used some of our savings and paid a bunch of it off and got our payments down so we wouldn't have a cash flow problem, rather than leaking our savings out in interest payments. Given the way the economy is right now, putting the money into the house is pretty safe compared to any other kind of investment.

I had had to bring Jet into Boulder to do the signing, and Bill had wanted to see me, so I went to our Boulder site fifteen minutes early to nail stuff down with Bill before running off to sign things with John. It was good to talk with Bill, and Jet was quiet for the conversation, sitting in the sling and just watching the conversation. He cheerfully smiled at everyone that smiled at him, and as I was charging through the building to get to John's cubicle, lots of people stopped to say hi when they saw Jet tucked up against me.

Jet was in the sling because I was using his new car seat in the Passat. We'd found out that the Baby Buggy can't use the seat because it's center seatbelt is too short, but the Passat has no problems with it. The seat is a lot more solid than the infant seat, and tall enough that it requires a lot more belt to get over the front of it for when it's facing backwards. It's also a bit harder to get Jet into and out of the five point harness, but he seems a lot more secure when he's in it. He was happy enough sitting on the floor in the seat, but after a long time in it, I think the straps are just a bit too tight for him and he started complaining instead of sleeping. Though having him awake usually wouldn't have been a bad thing, especially since I was planning on pulling him out and carrying him around in the sling.

Problem was that Jet hadn't napped all day. So he was pretty cranky all afternoon, especially in the car, but also during my extra 1 o' clock meeting. It was yet another last minute setup, but I'm really hoping that this will be over, soon. This being the huge rush of getting everyone to at least tell me what it is that they think they're going to do so that we can figure out if we even have the resources to integrate what it is that we are going to do. The morning meeting was full of that as well, and I had had plenty of time to listen and think because John had taken Jet to Greeley early enough that John just dropped Jet right off at Joan's and then went to work. So I had had the morning completely free to think and get an initial plan of attack on the things I had to do today and tomorrow.

Sadly, I was about as focussed as a cotton ball this morning, and it wasn't because Jet did badly last night. He'd actually only gotten up twice, but the night before had been pretty bad. I think the real reason for the funk was realizing that there was just so much left to do and having no clear way of getting it down. I didn't know what the next step was because I'd asked everyone I could ask the questions I had, I just wasn't getting any answers. That just had me dependent on so many other people that it was just silly and I was feeling pretty powerless to do anything about it.

During a talk I had with Bill after my first meeting, though, he said that I should ask Jim and Arne about stuff, that they'd be willing to answer stuff. I just had to get it together enough to get it out. Having three hours of meetings, though, didn't help, nor did having a really unhappy Jet who needed pretty constant attention once he was home from Joan's.

John had gone to Greeley to get the permits for his new garage. He's building another, separate garage on the land, that's going to be his main Land Rover shop and storage for the trucks he's got. The Baby Buggy could do with some protection, and Moby Dick and the Stoat would fit fine in the 'outhouse'. The main garage would be heated so that John could work comfortably by the house, and the other would be for protection and extra places to put things that didn't need working on. We've been lucky, so far, with the thunderstorms not producing damaging hail, yet.

John has already found a contractor to do the work, and they dumped a load of gravel in the area already today. He was very pleased to be able to get all the permits for the building at Greeley this morning. He'd brought along Jet, and all the ladies in the office flocked to play with Jet while John's paperwork was being processed. Jet loved the attention, and the ladies loved the diversion. That was pretty cool.

The money from the sale of Borax pretty much has financed the whole project, so John's pretty much all set. So that was another good thing to celebrate with our dinner. Yay!

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Copyright 2001 Liralen Li. All Rights Reserved.