Thursday, July 22, 2004

Where in the world is Laurie Johnson?

Hello there, everyone (all three of you). It's been a while, again. But I have been busy for part of the time, and avoiding the AC-free zone where my computer resides for part of the time, and getting ready to move, and going on vacation, and generally getting more and more pregnant and therefore spending more time on such things as napping and keeping my feet elevated above my heart. Summer is not kind to pregnant ankles, oh my no!

Early this month, Eric and I went out to Southern California for nine days. We had a wonderful time. Not only did we get to spend a little time with my left-coast family (dad, grandma, and uncle) - we also got to attend his brother's wedding and see his family as well: mom and dad in from the Bahamas; sister, grandfather, aunt and uncle in from D.C.; cousins in from Ohio; various other assorted friends and family from all across the country. We had an absolute blast, especially considering that it was the first time all of Eric's immediate family had been together in several years. We took a ton of pictures - there's an album up on Shutterfly, but it contains 220 pictures, so only wander that way if you are very curious or really trying to procrastinate.

In addition to wedding events and family visits, I also got to visit with some of my favorite people in the world, my dear, dear friends from the few years I lived in L.A. I have pictures of that, too, but Sassy's are better - and they're already up on her blog, so less work for me. She officially has the only picture of my naked belly that I have ever allowed anyone to take - I think I'm ok with it being online . . .

In addition to vacationing in LA-LA land, we're preparing to move. A friend of ours recently purchased a townhome south of the Twin Cities, and we're going to be the downstairs tenants for the next few years while I finish up my degree. Currently, no one is living in the house, as the whole thing needed to be repainted, stress on need. The color scheme in the house was black-white-grey-greyish-blue, and the effect was, in a word, ugly. I'm staying away from all painting activity because of the fumes, but I have been running errands and helping where I can - I spent too many hours last week pressure-washing our new deck (which will be fabulous once the years of grimy, mossy buildup have been washed away). As a result of last weekend's deck-washing, I got to spend about two solid days on the couch, in the direct path of our A/C unit, reclining with my feet up on a stack of all available pillows. Thanks, Mom, for the crappy circulation!

Today I actually ventured out of the house for the first real post-pressure-washing excursion: the plan was to meet a friend for lunch and then go to the Mall of America to get my hair cut and perhaps shop a little. The lunch went off more or less without a hitch, though I got lost on the way there and was late. We went to La Bodega tapas bar in Uptown and had a very yummy lunch: the cheese platter, tortilla (one of my favorite things from my time in Spain), and verduras a la plancha - the eggplant in this dish was especially yummy. We finished up with coffee and tiramisu. Mmmmm! I know some have expressed disappointment with La Bodega, saying it was overpriced, overcrowded, and not as good as expected, but I really enjoyed the tapas we had, and I think that for a light lunch, this place is ideal. We were the only ones there for much of our lunch. Unfortunately, I didn't get to complete the second part of my planned excursion for the day: I got lost leaving Uptown, as well, and so arrived late for my hair appointment. Sadly, my favorite stylist was booked for the next five hours, so I had to console myself with a little maternity-clothes shopping.

After battling early-rush traffic to get back home, I decided to stop by Barnes & Noble and pick up the next book for the book club I'm theoretically involved with (I have only been to one meeting since the club began meeting in January - the last several meetings have actually been canceled, though, because it's summer and people have better things to do with the last Friday of the month). Anyone have any opinions on The Secret Life of Bees? I hope it's as good as the hype surrounding it would indicate. I also picked up a brand-new academic year planner, which hopefully I will actually use to keep track of a life that will, inevitably, become more complicated once the kiddo arrives in September. After completing the Barnes and Noble experience with a refreshing beverage, I headed home and discovered that the office is actually a bearable temperature for the first time in quite a while - hence the waaaay-long update here.

And now, I must go pack up some books. It is my job for the next several days to package at least two boxes of stuff daily, which Eric will then transport to the townhouse the following day. He's going over more or less every day when he gets off of work to try and finish up the painting, which must all be complete before we move in on August 8. Thereafter, by the way, we will have central air, and more frequent blogging should resume. Until then, I make no promises.

- posted by laurie @ 7/22/2004 04:30:00 PM
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