Joining Jen at Conversion Diary again….
1. This week has been full of triage moments, I’d say even more than usual. What to deal with first? Lucia’s bedroom floor, which has been crying out to heaven to be vacuumed all week? Setting up the new baby gate at the top of the stairs so I can vacuum? Preventing Felix from crawling over me and diving down the stairs while I’m wrestling with said gate? Hold that — mopping up the puddle of pee in front of the toilet? Scrounging together a decent load of laundry to go with the pee-soaked clothes into the washer? Spraying Lucia down in the tub for the second time since she’s woken up, while mournfully realizing that this is the closest I’ve gotten to the shower all day? Oh look, and now they’re hungry.
We talked about the new pope, and when The Master of Hestviken will stop being so depressing, and Italian cooking and how Luke can’t stand Giada de Laurentis’ head,
and I came back way too late and was rewarded the next morning with a splitting headache (and I didn’t even drink! Why!) … but it was worth it.
2. Anyways. Back to the normal routine today. Baby vomit’s on the house (and the carpet, and my clothes, and his clothes, etc.) Before Felix decided to chuck up his snack, though, we’d been blissfully watching this episode of Lidia’s Italy. She had me in the first five minutes when describing her hands-off risotto as “perfect for busy mothers.”
3. Speaking of which, I’ve been reading this cookbook by Lidia Bastianich, which focuses on her home region of Istria in northeastern Italy. It’s fascinating — the region has been under the rule and influence of Austria, Italy and Yugoslavia, and the cuisine reflects that — and I really like her down-to-earth, improvisational, use-every-part-of-the-chicken and know-your-ingredients approach to cooking. That said, how can you not love a woman who spends an entire page describing how to care for live snails (this precedes a five-sentence recipe for snail and fennel salad.)
… Sprinkle bread crumbs over the bottom of a cardboard box or a tightly woven basket (either of which should be tightly covered; snails are prone to wanderlust and cover more ground more quickly than it’s generally supposed they can). Place the snails in the box and let them rest for 24 hours, during which time they will begin to cleanse their digestive tracts of undesirable substances. … allow the snails to purge themselves over an additional 5-day period, cleaning and sprinkling the container with fresh bread crumbs daily. (It’s advisable, incidentally, not to form any sentimental attachments with the critters, and to refrain from naming or otherwise individualizing them; you’re raising food, not pets.)
Sigh. Adorable. (I tried convincing Luke to join me in imagining the delightful image of the little Rick Steves of snails, “prone to wanderlust,” and wearing a backpack and whatever the snail equivalent of Bermuda shorts would be, but he would not.)
5. I’ve yet to go to the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, but during our last library trip I picked up a brochure for the current exhibition — Burst of Light: Caravaggio and His Legacy — and now I really want to go. (Date day, Luke? Hinthint). Closer to home, I’ve also been hearing about the Edwardian Opulence exhibit at the Yale Center for British Art. I love how they’re basically marketing the entire exhibit as, “HEY! This is just like Downton Abbey!!” You get them in any way you can, I guess.
6. Lucia’s been watching Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood on PBS Kids and…I’m kinda in love. Daniel was always my favorite puppet on Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, and now when I belt out the songs along with the adorable, little, animated tiger cub, Lucia gives me a weirded out look. I usually let her watch a show while I’m making dinner if she took a nap that afternoon (bribery at its finest), and today we had to convince her to give the original Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood a chance. Such problems, I know. As the Honest Toddler would say, “Is this homeschool?”
7. A benefit to waiting until Sunday to post these is that now I can link to this rendition of “Danny Boy” Luke shared with me today. Now, we like corned beef and cabbage as much as anyone, but we honestly don’t care that much about St. Patrick’s Day and celebrating our non-existent Irish heritage. However. This version’s sung by an astronaut in the International Space Station, so it’s inherently awesome.