May 7th, 2005

shabbat shalom

Lovely Shabbos

We had a lovely shabbos (as is obvious by my entry title)! As much as I hate late Shabboses (Shabbosim?), I'm beginning to appreciate some of the finer aspects. Why do I hate late Shabbos, you ask? Because my favorite part of Shabbos is Friday night. I love having guests and a nice meal and maybe even a game or three after dinner. I love that the second I light my shabbos candles, the frenetic day stops. It no longer matters whether I finished everything. It no longer matters if I'm "in the mood" for Shabbos. It just is. Ready or not, I get 25 hours of rest from the standard work week, with no work obligations, no errands to run, no cooking to do, no cleaning to do. Even if I have those things to do, I can't do them. So as frantic as I can be up to that point, as soon as I light my candles, I calm down. My mindset changes. And life is good. Particularly if we have guests.

Not that Saturday isn't nice. But it's harder to entertain the monster. And when shabbos starts late, it ends late, which makes me appreciate Saturday a little less than Friday night. We rarely have lunch guests because I'm just NOT that good at plannning and preparing lunches. I like to have a cold, light lunch and that just isn't the norm in our communty. I'd be happy with a green salad, fruit salad and cold cuts (or bagels and cream cheese if I want dairy, but that's also apparently unheard of in the community!). And when shabbos ends late, I get towards 6 o'clock or so and I start counting the minutes. And that's a lot of minutes. 180 of them. I get restless and shabbos can't end soon enough for me. And I *hate* feeling that way about shabbos. I want to love it. I want to embrace the calm. I want to embrace the quiet. I want, want, want to love it. And today, finally, I did.

We didn't have guests for dinner last night, which is rare for me. But it was fine. I'd had a long week, and I was tired. So I didn't go searching out guests once I found out that our "regulars" wouldn't be here. Next week we're having beckyfeld and Aaron (I think for both meals, but I should confirm that), and so I'm guaranteed guests. We had a koshermart shabbos, which is to say, I didn't cook much. I bought soup, a rotisserie chicken, a potato kugel, and dessert. I figured I'd make a green salad and fish and call it a meal. As it turned out I made the fish but we didn't eat it, and I forgot to make a green salad, but it was still a lovely meal. Thursday night I made two quiches for Saturday's lunch and figured I'd make green salad and fruit salad and call it done. That was the extent of my cooking this week. Two quiches and fish fritters. And you know? It was kind of nice. Seth and I had a lovely dinner, did the dishes by throwing away the plates (paper, of course) and went to bed. By 10:30. Rock on.

Today, since Julian's nap seems to be moving later on the weekend (typically he takes an afternoon nap for his nanny, but a mid- to late-morning nap on the weekends for me), I decided to risk it and take Julian to shul for the kids Torah Time. I was glad I did as I got to see some people I hadn't seen in a while and Julian got to run around during free play (though he was a bit difficult to keep still during the discussion of the parsha and reading some stories), and it was nice. And Amy invited us over for lunch, so I figured quiche freezes well and I was probably going to freeze one of them anyway, so sure. I came home, got Seth (he'd gone to the 7am minyan), and we walked down to lunch. Julian barely made it through kiddush before it became quite clear that he needed a nap. Fortunately, he was at the house he naps at 5 days a week (we share a nanny with Alex and Amy), so he was in a familiar setting. I put him down and he screamed for about a second (maybe two) and then rolled over and fell asleep. Hooray! He took a nice 2 hour nap which meant we had lunch in peace.

Amy makes the world's best salads, so that's always a treat. She also had cholent, Spanish rice, potato kugel, cold cuts, and a cranberry cobbler/kugel thingy (I make the same cranberry thingy and I don't know what to call it, though the recipe is unhelpfully titled "Cranberry Mold"... that implies jello to me which isn't right at all... it's got an oatmeal and brown sugar crust and topping and is filled with cranberries and apples and Amy also used pineapple this time). Everything was, of course, delicious. I don't care for cholent, but Amy makes great cholent (similar to lola100's recipe).

After lunch, we came back home and I took a nap until Seth left for mincha. He blessedly took Julian with him, which gave me a half hour of wake up time until I headed down to meet him for seudah shlishit in the park. There were about, oh, I dunno, 50-60 people there? It was quite pleasant. And a lovely afternoon for it. Julian got to run around and burn off some excess energy. And he got teased by the older kids which was more traumatic for me than it was for him. It was so sad watching him be shooed away by 4 year olds. All he wanted was to share their ball, but they kept throwing it over his head and pushing him away. *sniff* Poor baby. So one of the kids parents gave Julian another ball (which incensed the kid it belonged to, but tough noogies). Julian had a great time running around and playing with the ball. I got to talk to some more people I hadn't seen in too long. And I got to congratulate a few people on their recent announcements that they're pregnant (EVERYONE seems to be pregnant except me, darnit!).

Julian and I came home, Seth headed to Ma'ariv, Julian conked right out, and I got some alone time until Seth came home. Now he's off at a movie (he should be home soon) with some friends, and I've got a load of laundry in the washer which makes me feel so productive even though I've basically wasted the rest of the evening. Lots of cleaning to be done that I haven't done. As soon as the wash stops, I'm going to put it in the dryer, go take a seriously needed shower, and go to BED.

All in all, a good day.
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