This weekend was awesome, dudes. Awesome.
Friday night we had a dinner with some of the people from Jeff’s work, at an Italian restaurant here in Akron. When I was getting ready for the dinner, I hit some sort of breaking point re: my clothes.
Remember how Jen and I had that style blog a few years ago? How much fun it was, and how even though I’m not, like, the most stylish person ever (HA), I enjoyed combining pieces to make fun outfits, and finding good deals, and looking put together? Well, I’m sure I’m the first person in the history of the world to say that that all changed when I became a SAHM. 😛 Really, though, since before I got pregnant I just haven’t really bought any nice new clothes. I got a few pieces here and there, but they’ve all been utilitarian button-downs or plain tee shirts. And so for the past 2+ years, my wardrobe has become progressively more boring and threadbare. Couple that with the postpartum weight loss and Magic Boobs, and everything I own is suddenly either too big, holey, stained, or out-of-date. Or all four. And I’m kind of tired of it.
So after whining to Simon and trying on sixty different things for a casual yet sort of professional dinner (I ended up in an old work shirt – an olive green button-down from Express, my faithful corduroy GAP skirt, and an Old Navy cardigan that should be relegated to the rag bag), I snapped. I was done!
Jeff apparently loves me, so I got to spend a while browsing on LLBean. They’re having a “spend $50, get a $10 gift card” sale, and I already had one gift card from ordering a new casual winter coat a couple weeks ago. So I used that, shopped the sale section, and now have a couple new pieces coming my way. I got *another* $10 gift card from that order, so in a week or two I’ll order some more (just to hit that $50 minimum to get yet another $10 card :-D). Winning!
Then yesterday in the course of our running around (more on that in a bit), I found an outlet mall in Aurora that has a Banana Republic outlet. Banana was always one of my favorites back when I was working, so I was psyched to hit their outlet. But it wasn’t quite like I remember. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but I always had good luck finding natural fibers at Banana. Silk and cotton and wool, not rayon and polyester. Browsing yesterday, though, it seemed like just about everything was synethetic fibers. Disappointing. I did find a couple cute things, though, that fit within my self-imposed rules of “not slobby, not neutral, not boring”:
That short-sleeved shirt looks sort of sickly colored in the pic, but I promise it’s quite lovely 🙂 It also has a really great waist detail shaping. I think it’ll look good with some of my handknit sweaters this fall :).
So, backtracking a bit: we had the dinner on Friday night, which was fine, whatever. Friday is *also* when we discovered that the washer (which came with the house but isn’t maintained by the property manager) is broken – and apparently has been since we got here. The agitator doesn’t agitate (though the spin cycle still spins, and it fills and empties OK). So I called a repairman who came out, looked at it, and said it’s un-fixable: the motor is completely seized; the repairs would cost more than the washer is worth. Ugh. So no we have to go buy one of those. But that also solves the mystery of why none of our clothes really felt like they were coming clean, and Simon’s diapers were building up ammonia despite 3-4 rinses on each load. And yes, our landlord is a damned dirty liar in yet another regard “Oh yeah, the washer in the house works!”. Bullshit.
The Akron Marathon was Saturday morning, and Jeff had signed up to volunteer for it (two of his co-clerks were running the half marathon). But since somebody waited until the last possible minute to fill out his volunteer form, the only position left was “recycling steward”, on a 5:30-8:00 am shift. Oh, that did give me such joy! That my beloved would spend the wee hours of Saturday morning sorting recycling. Because I am not a nice person.
Simon and I rolled out of bed at our usual time and strolled over to the marathon route (the portion running down Market went through Highland Square proper, just a few blocks from our house) to cheer on the runners and our stalwart (recycling) steward. This is the only picture of any runners that I got before my phone started being an asshole:
Simon didn’t think much of the whole thing at first…
but he quickly picked up on the fact that there were people clapping all around him, so by the time Jeff’s shift ended and he joined us, Simon was busy clapping every time he saw someone (runner or bystander) pass our spot. So helpful!
The rest of Saturday was pretty much just spent around the house. I got a fair amount done on my cross-stitching project and the stripey knee sock I’m knitting, and we went on a nice long family walk that evening, through the ritzy neighborhood adjacent to ours.
But then Sunday. SUNDAY! So much fun! I got up early and did a bunch of random cleaning (the kind that’s impossible to accomplish with a toddler underfoot), then when my boys woke up we headed out on a super autumn adventure 🙂
First stop was the aforementioned outlet mall and lunch at some local grill up there – nothing too exciting. After that, though! APPLE PICCKKKINNNNGGGGG!!!!
We went to Monroe’s Orchard, just northeast of Akron. It was SO AWESOME. Much more authentic than the orchard-that-must-not-be-named 😉 (Yes I AM still on about that.). More fun than the orchard in the desert of 2012. Pretty much in line with my previously-established high expectations, circa 2011.
Look! I was positively giddy with excitement!
Jeff was his usual cool self, and Simon was underwhelmed:
I then enthusiastically dubbed myself the Apple Wench, and set about scampering among the branches and gathering a full bushel of Cortland apples:
Everything was just right! YAYYYYY apple picking!
I MAY decide to share with Jeff and Simon. Maybe. 😛
There were perfect rows of apple trees! And a wagon with hay bales to ride out to the orchard! And hand-painted family signs! Even the cute-but-surly teenage son that Eckert’s was lacking. SHEER AND UTTER PERFECTION.
Then after we deposited our overflowing apple bags in the car, we headed over to the orchard’s pumpkin patch. Because DUH.
We found a Simon-sized pumpkin, and a Jeff-and-Kate-sized pumpkin:
Then we rounded out the trip with a peck of Macintosh from the store (they didn’t have any for you-pick), and a candle and some local honey. It was marvelous. Monroe’s Orchard gets an A+ from us!
Here’s our front porch this morning:
Doesn’t that look nice? I need to paint all the white with Killz before it gets too cold, and do something with those poor sad flowerbeds.
And now I must away! The wee one is whining for boob + lunch, then once the washer repair guy leaves I have to run to the store for quart jars, and start canning! 🙂
Happy Monday, friends!