Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

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Sunflowers and Root Beer

A week ago, Jet helped me dig two trenches in my raised garden and the two of us threw a whole packet of sunflower seed into the soil. It was really cool, this morning, to go out and see the leaves of the dozens of little plants coming up through the dirt. Jet was really proud and he gently touched the leaves of one little plant. "They're smushed by the dirt." he said. "They're pushing through the dirt to get to the sunlight." "Why?" "To grow some more." He contemplated for a bit, "They're growing fast." "Yes."

Last night, we had pepperoni pizza and chicken wings for dinner. Or, at least, he had the pizza and I had the wings and they were pretty good. Not great, but good enough. Big Fat Bob's Pizzaria does both at the same time, so I was able to get what I wanted and he could get what he wanted and that was good all around.

I promised Jet he could watch a Thomas movie, but decided that it would be more fun to do something other than JUST watch TV.

So we hunted around the house for the two dozen pop bottles John had found the other night, a mostly empty box of pop bottle caps (of which there were about 20, so we got lucky for our dozen bottles), and had a box-search for the bottle capper, which is mostly a geared lever to smash the caps onto the bottles. Jet counted out, carefully, all the bottles and the bottle caps. The Jet and I spent about an hour with bottle brush and soap and washed out all the bottles with soap and water. He did all the scrubbing, very patiently, and very thoroughly, until all the bottles were sparkling clean. I scrubbed the bottle caps just to make sure they were clean.

I had three bottles of pop extracts, ginger beer, ginger ale, and root beer. Jet wanted root beer. He helped count and pour 7 pints of warm tap water into a pot, then counted and poured four half-cups of sugar into it, and let me pour the tablespoon of root beer concentrate into the pot. He stirred industiously, "Mmmm... smells good." while I dissolved a quarter teaspoon of yeast in warm water and then poured that in. It's going to be cool for the next week, so I felt it wouldn't hurt to give the yeast a kick-start. I had him pour the the first cupful of pop into the funnel, but held the funnel wrong and it plugged the hole and air shouldered its way out, and blorp, pop everywhere. Jet immediately got a cloth and started cleaning things up.

Wow. I was very impressed by that.

So I poured the pop into our clean bottles, and then Jet watched while I womanhandled the darn capper and cheered every time I made a good dimple on the top of the cap. It's the best way to see it's sealed. Jet then conscieniously wiped down each warm bottle with a damp rag and put it away in the box. Took us a good two hours to do all that, but we ended up with six eight ounce bottles and six twelve ounce bottles, and I may end up putting a warmer in with the bottles just to keep the yeast happy while it's cold and dank here. During the summer there won't be a problem with the yeast living happy and CO2 productive lives, but for now we'll have to make sure they get a little help.

We were both pretty satisfied but tired by then. Jet wanted to play for a while, and so he did, but when it was time to go to bed, he said, "But Daddy isn't home, yet. I can't go to bed until he gets home."

I then explained that he probably wouldn't be home for another couple of days. Took a little while to sink in and Jet cried a little because he missed his Daddy and I said that that was okay, I missed him too, and I asked if he wanted to call Daddy on the phone. He shook his head and just said that he wanted to go to bed. So he collected his trains to take with him, and we went up and did pajamas and as we were about to brush his teeth, Jet burst out crying because he wanted to watch his movie and he knew it was too late.

So I said, one time deal, since I promised you could watch a movie, you'll get ready for bed, and instead of books, you can pick one Thomas movie to watch. And when you watch it you have to lie down and have blankets. Okay?


So Jet bravely got his teeth brushed, flossed, and we changed into pajamas, and he was all smiles as we went downstairs and he put his head on the arm rest and snuggled in as I tucked him in. I turned on the Chinese Dragon movie, and in ten minutes Jet was fast asleep. I gave him another five minutes as I packed his lunch for the next day, cleaned up the kitchen, and stuff, and then I picked him up and put him to bed. He didn't even move when I did that, and he slept until 5. I lay down with him then until he stopped moving, and then he stayed asleep until nearly 7 and scared the heck out of me by touching my shoulder while I was fast asleep.

He had a pretty good breakfast, a quarter of a bagel, a quarter of a grapefruit which he cheerfully wrestled with welding a grapefruit spoon quite happily, and half a glass of juice and a vitamin. He had a really horrible cough, twice, but doesn't really seem to be sick. Still, he's not eating a lot yesterday and today. He did eat quite a bit the two days before that so he may just be evening things out. We'll see.

One amazing thing, though, was that he's learned how to do buttons, and he's practicing everywhere he can. He did his own pajama top up and he giggled and started undoing my shirt buttons, and after being warned that he can't do that to anyone else, he cheerfully undid them all and then redid them just as carefully. So he's learning yet another life skill. I'm pretty impressed. He also got into his dressing bear, which someone gave him when he was three months old, but now he actually understands what all the fastening are and really understands what to do with them all, so that was very cool.

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