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    Tuesday, October 14, 2008

    Apparently Benjamin is all set for Kindergarden, or at least that's what the good people of the Rochester public school system told us on Friday. In our city, kids have to go through a screening process sometime between the time they're 3 years and 3 months and the summer before they begin school. The screening involves a hearing test, vision examination and several small "games" to look at their readiness. He has great hearing, perfect vision (literally) and did really well at the activities. He did struggle with a "repeat after me" game where the teacher said a number and then asked him to repeat it. She started out small -- teacher: "2" Benjamin: "2" teacher: "6" Benjamin: "6" teacher: "9 3" Benjamin: "4 8" teacher: "7 2" Benjamin: "1 5." He just didn't give up, it was so funny. She'd say 2 numbers and he'd come right back with 2 of his own. It wasn't that he isn't capable of repeating her (he did it fine after she explained it in depth to him), but he just had to throw out 2 numbers of his own like it was some kind of one-upping game. He wasn't trying to show his abilities, he was trying to BEAT her at her game!!!

    We spent the rest of Friday at Oxbow Park, which has a small zoo, hiking trails and a playground. Since most kids are in school, the place was empty. It was a gorgeous day and it was nice to finally have a Friday free from packing suitcases or cleaning the house for company. I can't even remember the last time Benjamin and I spent a Friday doing something fun!! We even managed to see a porcupine gettin' down:

    On Saturday, after Mike's long run with his running group, we drove out to Fountain to spend some time at Drury's furniture looking at extremely beautiful, but extremely overpriced kitchen tables. Then we stopped by an apple orchard and picked up a bag of Courtlands. It was a nice sunny drive to/from Rochester. Sunday morning I went out on a long bike ride through most of town. We are so blessed to have about 60 miles of paved bike trails here for running and cycling. I don't know what Mike nor I would do without them!

    Everywhere you look around here now are shining examples of why living in a place with seasons is great! Soon we will have plenty of examples of why living in a place with seasons is not so great, so we are trying to soak in as much autumn as we can!!

    Sunday night Mike watched the Packers while he made us a to-die-for meal of Kale Ragu (I know, it doesn't sound like it, but it was AWESOME!). Benjamin and I napped. Monday was a blustery, rainy day so Benjamin and I stayed home and I began the work on his Halloween costume. If you have even briefly talked to him in the last month and a half, you'll know that he is going to be a T-Rex. He is very very excited. I am praying that he doesn't decide to change his costume choice anytime between now and Halloween. I can just see it now, "No Benjamin you WILL wear the T-Rex costume!! I don't care if you want to be Buzz Lightyear now - Mommy spent 20 HOURS sewing this costume!!" Pray for me.

    Mike is ready to begin his big home improvement project for the season: installing our baseboard heater in the basement. We actually bought it last winter, but kind of stalled on putting it in as the warm weather came and we didn't really need it anymore. We are sort of planning on totally redecorating the basement actually, so now with heat, we will actually want to spend time down there!! Just in time for winter and hibernation!

    2 Responses to “ ”

    Mike said...

    Hate the game, not the player!

    Mike said...


    3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
    5 cups (packed) thinly sliced kale (about 1 large bunch)
    1 14.5-ounce can vegetable broth
    1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with green pepper and onion in juice
    1 15-ounce can cannellini (white kidney beans), drained

    Add 4 tablespoons oil, garlic, and crushed red pepper to same pot;
    sauté over medium heat 30 seconds.

    Add kale and broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until kale wilts, about 5 minutes.

    Add tomatoes with juice, beans, and 1 tablespoon thyme. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

    Ladle ragout into shallow bowls.