Saturday, September 30, 2006

And suns grow meek, and the meek suns grow brief, And the year smiles as it draws near its death. - "October," William Cullen Bryant

2 heads of green leaf lettuce; 2 heads of red leaf lettuce; 8 tomatoes; 2 red peppers; 1 green pepper; 10 lbs carrots, shredded; 3 lbs ricotta; 3 lbs ziti; 3 lbs Italian sausage; 2 lbs grated pecorino; 3 lbs fresh mozzarella; 3 35-oz cans of whole tomatoes; 1 lb prosciutto; 1 lb hard salami; ½ lb sharp provolone; 1 lb parmigiana; 1 lb green olives; 1 lb green garlic-stuffed olives; 35-oz jar of marinated artichoke hearts; 1 lb roasted red peppers; 1 big jar pepperoncini; 7 loaves of Italian bread.

Oh, wait, I forgot the 2 lbs of spaghetti, the 60 meatballs with sauce, and the 24 deviled eggs H's mom is making.

That’s not counting munchies, dessert, coffee, or alcohol. I think H bought two cases of beer and a case of wine. I am making a full sheet cake (hence the ten pounds of carrots), with a sextupled cream cheese frosting recipe.

You would think we were feeding the invading Huns; instead we are feeding H’s family and a few family friends.

It’s grey and cold here, And all I want to do is go home and curl upon the couch with a mug of tea and read the rest of No Angel. Instead, I go home to bake a birthday cake, and concoct four pans of ziti. This alone is a good reason to NOT HAVE ANY MORE CHILDREN.

The first birthday party is always ginormous; after that, they are much more low-key and with many fewer people. And by their third birthday the kids all request chocolate cake. Terzo gets carrot cake tomorrow, traditional first birthday cake fare. I am taking the oh-so-wise Joke’s suggestion this time around and just plunking the Happy Meal Lightning McQueen and Sally and Mater on the cake.

Now that he’s one, Terzo has decided he wants to walk. He can maintain an upright position for several minutes, and he actually took four steps yesterday. He weighs almost 27 lbs, so I suppose a little adjustment in center-of-gravity and whatnot is in order.


After I finished grocery shopping last night, I wandered over to the Barnes & Noble, for a cup of chai and some browsing.

Of course I saw a ton of stuff I wanted to buy: several gorgeous blank books on clearance; Francine Prose’s Reading like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and Those Who Want to Write Them; Mark Haddon’s new book, Spot of Bother; The Thirteenth Tale for which I am 78th on the list of holds at the library; the 10th anniversary release of the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice, with the delicious Colin Firth as Mr Darcy; The Memory-Keeper’s Daughter which is surrounded by almost as much buzz as Water for Elephants; Margaret Atwood’s newest collection of short stories, Moral Disorder; Jennifer Weiner’s new book, a collection of short stories, The Guy Not Taken; some weird and oddball selections I wouldn’t mind reading: Pigtopia, The Shroud of the Thwacker; and did you know Nick Hornby has another book like the delightful Polysyllabic Spree, that just came out in August, Housekeeping vs. the Dirt? Sarah Waters’ Booker-shortlisted The Night Watch; The Lost: A Search for Six of Six Million; Clare Messud’s The Emperor’s Children; Irene Nemirovsky’s Suite Francaise.

I had in my hot little hands Alexandra Fuller’s Scribbling the Cat, her follow-up to the strangely unsettling Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, The Mercy of Thin Air, which I saw mentioned on someone’s blog recently, and a book by a local author who happens to be one of the other kindy moms, The Baby Goes Beep! but in the end, I went home empty-handed.

I am just so scattered these days. I requested one of Barabara Trapido’s novels from the library and forgot to pick it up; I brought home from work’s book exchange several Lee Harris mysteries and haven’t picked up even one; I can barely concentrate long enough to read the newspaper lately.

Plus, I have Peter Carey’s Theft: A Love Story, Rebecca O’Connell’s Myrtle of Willendorf, and Rafaella Barker’s Summertime sitting patiently at the library as well, waiting to be picked up. If I can rouse myself long enough to walk down there some lunch hour and retrieve them.

I know most people find autumn invigorating and brisk – I just want to go into hibernation. I can't even write a coherent blog post.

Wake me in April.


Suse said...

I feel your pain. I too am scattered ...

Hang in there and give a great big fat hug to that walking one year old.

Gina said...

Good luck tomorrow--I'll be thinking of you!

Caro said...

Oh wow, that's a lot of food.

Have a great celebration.

Anonymous said...

I really love your family's birthday traditions. Your boys are growing up in such a big warm family.

Joke said...

Walking, already? Year One, already?

Weren't you gestating, like, an hour ago or something?



hungry in LA said...

Wow, I thought buying the two-for-one 6.5 oz. jars of artichoke hearts was excessive for us. But we're liberal non-breeders who adopted a dog instead. Good luck. I am of course assuming that you lovingly hand grated the 2 lbs of pecorino....?