Summer Update!

My limited spare time has been taken up by practicing piano, as I had a piano lesson in July! My first in over 25 years. I was so nervous my hands were shaking and I made way more mistakes than I usually do. But it was extremely beneficial so I’m glad I did it. Many hours on Beethoven’s Sonata 17, the one Glenn Gould plays like his hair’s on fire and he can’t douse it until he’s through. Obviously I don’t play it that fast, but I’m working on memorization now and I think that will help with a lot of issues. I’ve now been working on this for 6 months! On and off, obviously, but still. My husband’s starting to feel he could probably play it himself by now, he’s heard it so much.

So that’s one reason I’m a bit behind on the blogging. We spent three weeks on Vancouver Island, which we call The Island, and it was gorgeous:IMG_8133

And we made cinnamon buns:

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But we had SO MANY guests. Too many. And when you have guests, you wind up making major breakfast, major lunch, and then a major dinner. For 15! So I had very little down time and that’s exhausting. It’s hard though; I love everyone who came, I’m happy to have seen them, but it was too much. Not sure how we’ll organize things next year but something has to give. I don’t think it’s cool to suffer through stuff that you can totally control and then complain about it later, but that’s essentially what I’ve just done. Sorry! Learn from my mistakes.

Next year’s resolutions:

  • Limit stays to 3 nights MAX.
  • Try to have only one family at a time.
  • Have Leftover Night and if people don’t like it then maybe they won’t come next year. Yes, we’re restaurateurs and we eat leftovers.
  • Let people fend for themselves for breakfast! Everyone gets up at a different time. Brunch once a week only.
  • Ask people to take responsibility for one meal. It’s nice that people bring food, but sometimes it’s extremely difficult to make a coherent meal plan with a lot of rapidly spoiling, diverse ingredients.

Pet peeves:

People who wander through and say vaguely, “Anything I can do?” before wandering out again. It’s annoying to have to be the general all the time. I have to think of tasks for people to do. That’s work in itself.

When people do something helpful but make more work for me in the end. Someone did dishes but didn’t rinse anything first, just got the sponge all clagged up with black grease so I had to throw it away. And you can’t complain! That’s the thing. Because people are Helping. But sometimes no help is better than some help. Like when people put my expensive Japanese knives in the dishwasher! OH YES THEY DID. And I can’t be mad when people are trying to be helpful. But I’m mad anyway, I just feel really guilty about it. You should see me smile with gritted teeth. But. At the end of the day, it’s all good, and I’m grateful to have wonderful friends and family who want to spend time with us! You take the good, you take the bad. I took the good, and now I’m kvetching here.

Now I’ve just come back from being a house guest at someone else’s beach cottage. Ahhh. That was fun! We stayed 3 nights – because that’s enough – and I taught my hosts how to make cinnamon buns.

Next post: book reviews!

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Summer Update!

  1. Hi! Thank you for the photo on the gorgeous flowers and buns šŸ™‚ You reminded me of my first piano class after about 15 years without playing. I had played since I was young up until university started. Then I began again a few years later because playing piano was missing from my life. I thought I had forgotten everything but it was all still in my head šŸ™‚ In the first class, my teacher (one of my best friends) made me play an easy piece (which I did, yay!!) than a harder one, and harder… etc until it got too hard to do easily. He said that we’d take it on from there. I’ve only improved ever since and LOVE it! I hope you continue and find happiness in it šŸ™‚

    • I’m glad to know I’m not the only one! One of the things I love about piano is the the almost meditative state playing puts me in. It’s similar to the state you achieve when exercising hard, somewhere between focusing hard and not focusing at all, and I find that in my busy days I almost never achieve that state of mind. Music is where I find that special meditative state and I am both exhausted and refreshed afterwards.

  2. This post really made me chuckle. I recognize quite a few of those situations. šŸ™‚