2. Favorite holiday. Er, not Halloween. I am intrigued by the Day of the Dead (more on this here), but it is not really mine to celebrate.
Aside: Pros and cons of instituting new holidays/ traditions
Pros: Step outside your comfort zone
Find rituals that address needs not covered in current holiday plan
Feel pioneering and multicultural
The creation of new traditions is a beautiful thing (according to parenting magazines, anyway)
Cons: The artificial quality emphasizes the absurdity of all holidays
Feel like a dork
Feel like an impostor
The kids keep asking why are we doing this?
So do I.
3. Favorite meal this week: the delicious pork and pepper stew my Mom made when Si and I flew out to visit them last weekend, or possibly the accompaniment, pasta and mushrooms made with the succulent fresh oyster mushrooms they picked on the walk we took. Man, oyster mushrooms are good. They make me revise my previous stance on mushrooms as food (which, succinctly: eh). On the same walk we stepped down to the muddy shore of a pond where there were hundreds - well, scores - of dime-sized froggies.
Second aside: I have mentioned before that there is a woeful lack of frogs in the lives of my kids. The frogs probably don't mind this, but it makes me ache a little that we don't live in a place where the perennial absurdity that is a frog can be a common experience. It's partly a climate thing: the high plains is not kind to amphibians. But it's more a situational state: it's because we live in the suburbs, near a creek and a marsh. Our waterways are frogless. And, possibly not coincidentally, largely kidless as well.
4. Favorite book I'm reading this week: The Reluctant Fundamentalist. Short, clever, damning yet generous and manages to open a drafty window on a different world before it slams shut at the end. Close runnerup: A Visit from the Goon Squad. I'm often leery of obvious experimentation - okay, we get it, you're brilliant - but here it is funny and it works.
8. Favorite work thing: that niggling nervous tummy feeling of always being late and behind the ball. Oh, wait. Different list.