Sunday, January 19 2020

cookbooks, snowballs, and bowling parties

Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone! Hope you're having a great Sunday thus far. We're having an easy morning, waking up with plenty of time to get to the eleven o'clock church service, but I'm sure that by the time I'm finished writing this entry, that will no longer be true. Rodney is currently chilling on the couch with a bowl of peanut butter captain crunch and a glass of juice. As per usual, he's watching water slide videos. Getting him out of bed this morning, he was still practically glowing from our bowling party last night with our friends Alex and Cassie. We kept him up until 9:30 PM, which in toddler time must be the same as 3 in the morning, so it's no wonder he was still talking about it when he woke up. "Rodney loves bowling parties," he said while sleepily rubbing his eyes.

I should have probably started writing this entry sooner, but I got distracted by my new side project. Yesterday morning I started tinkering around with creating an online cookbook, so I've been on-and-off distracted by it since. I ported four of my recipes from my personal notes so far, and I can't stop looking at the final result. I fired off a link to Alex yesterday, and we chatted about it at the bowling alley. I see this as a great opportunity for me to clean up my old recipes and standardize them with a clean format. It's got me pretty excited.

Yesterday was a pretty good day. I spent some time hacking on my online cookbook, but I also spent a good amount of time shoveling snow, and later playing in the snow with Rodney. Yesterday's snow, slightly damp from the sun and warmer air, made for perfect snowballs, so not wanting to waste the opportunity, I took a break and pelted the side of our house with Rodney. There's few things in life that are more satisfying than a good snowball exploding on a brick wall, right?

For lunch time, we grazed on leftovers from our fridge, heating up stammpot and pizza. Marissa announced she was "going to do a brunch thing," sitting down with a bagel and grapefruit. "More like a pregnancy craving thing," I teased.

After putting Rodney down for a nap, Marissa and I hung out on the couch and watched some sketch re runs. We wouldn't be meeting Alex and Cassie until six, giving us plenty of time to nap and relax.

Finally, it came time for us to head out. We jumped in the car and drove to our bowling alley, where Alex and Cassie were waiting for us hanging out at the bar. They looked pretty content having drinks and watching a boxing match on TV. "Bowling alley bars are a great place to hide out," I later remarked to Alex. "They're very relaxing in their own way."

We rented a lane, each of us giving up one shoe as collateral. As the guy went in the back to put our shoes away, we remarked at how strange of a system it was. Who's going to steal a pair of old bowling shoes? How would having your shoes help the situation? If I walked out with their rental bowling shoes, would they start renting out my shoes to offset the theft?

I sat down in front of the dim kiosk to punch in everyone's names. I chose silly bowling names for everyone, giving Marissa "Pregnant Lady", which the system hilariously abbreviated at P Lady. We put in for an order of pizzas, then perused the racks for our own bowling balls. "I have this anxiety that whatever bowling ball I pick is going to rip off my thumb," Marissa shared. Cassie's eyes widened - "Me too!"

"Well you know how getting your thumb ripped off is," I added. "After it happens the first time, it's not so scary any more. It's part of bowling."

We played, taking a long break to eat pizza and refill on beer. I was playing pretty terribly, barely keeping up with Rodney's score. I felt kind of silly bowling a low 80 on the first game after bragging that our new January weekend tradition of bowling has made me stepped up my game. For whatever reason, the mojo wasn't there. I leveraged the situation to make Rodney laugh, throwing the ball through my legs and trying to put as much spin on the ball as possible.

In the middle of our last game, the lights dimmed and the bowling alley switched on their cosmic bowling mode. We had never stayed at the alley past nine, so you could imagine our surprise learning that all along we had been missing Saturday cosmic bowling by a mere half hour. The disco lights and loud music gave a tired Rodney second wind. He relished the last few frames, dancing, crawling on his belly, and running around with his arms extended like an airplane yelling LEEEEET'S GOOOOOO, in his own Dude Perfect style. He looked purely in his element.

Heading home, Rodney contested going to bed without a story, but soon after his head hit the pillow, he was asleep. Marissa and I were free to catch up on cleaning the house, and even empty a few project cards from the board. We wrapped up the night on the couch with a new movie pick. Marissa, continuing her march through the Alien movies, picked Aliens. Before we started the movie, we spent a few minutes on the couch throwing out fake titles in a dramatic voice, like Aliens: More Aliens, Alien…s, and Alien: You Though We Were Done?.

Today, after church we're going to go out to lunch, then swing by the grocery store to pick up food for dinner. For playoff game day, we're going to make Chef John's Buffalo Chicken Wings in a Jar, which sounds just perfect for snacking while, in all likelihood, watching a team I don't care about beat a team I don't like in the NFC championship. Go 49'ers (I guess). In all seriousness, from the little I've seen of the 49'ers this season, they are terrifyingly talented and no doubt deserve a super bowl win. Even better if they eliminate the Packers on the way.

Hope you all have a great day today.