Sunday, April 10, 2005

An Italian Lesson

Gabriel at Dogwood Festival 1

Gabriel at Dogwood Festival 2

Today we spent a lot of time with chores, including making squash, zucchini, and peas for Chip and pita chips for Mommy. The bread, a ciabatta recipe from our new book, is still in the works. Finally at about 5:00, we got out the door to go to the Dogwood Festival.

We didn't get there in time to see the Frisbee dogs, but we did get there in time to see every human fashion disaster on the face of the earth, all gathered in Piedmont Park. We don't know what it is about a festival that brings out the worst aesthetic sense in people, but we couldn't believe how many too-small shirts, mismatched clothes, and unwashed hair there was there. One girl was dressed as some kind of ballerina from the Island of Misfit Toys, complete with metallic purple tutu and red dancer's tights. She was dancing to some hippy band like she thought she was fooling us into thinking that she knew ballet, when she'd apparently never had a dance lesson in her life. There was a man next to her dressed like Jerry Garcia hula-hooping and a woman and young girl twirling some kind of ropes with tassles on the ends. Obviously, something was being smoked down there.

Anyhow, the park was really beautiful with all of the dogwoods just beginning to bloom. We walked around a little bit and decided to take a few minutes before church to sit in the grass and let Gabriel crawl around a little bit. Notice the stylish haircut, made even more stylish by an application of sunscreen on the scalp, in the photos (also, he was trying to go for the camera). He was tired but didn't fall asleep until we were - you guessed it - about five minutes from the apartment.

We were a little bit late for church, but it was a nice mass. At one point, he made his signature exclamation, which sounds like a half cough, half squeal of delight. We were in a smallish section of pews on the right, probably about 10 pews, and we were about the fourth pew back. When he made that noise, everyone behind us started laughing pretty loudly. He smiled at everyone and made lots of friends today. The man behind us said that he looked exactly like the Chipster when he was his age. He seemed really amazed that Gabriel looked so much like him. We could see how that could be the case. Gabriel was really good the whole hour. This was the first time since he was a little baby that he's been able to sit in the pew through the whole mass. It was especially nice for his Mommy and Daddy to be able to sit together the entire time.

We finally got rid of the millions of diapers that Gabriel has outgrown - the church is having a diaper drive, so we were very happy to get rid of them. We'd been wondering where would be the best place to donate them when this happened to come up. It was the perfect solution.

After church, we went to J Ripples and talked to Judd for a while. He's going to close up shop on Wednesday, so we intend to go there every day until Tuesday, since we'll be leaving for Manassas on Wednesday. Matt had white chocolate and stracciatella (vanilla with ground chocolate) and Patty had chocolate espresso and chocolate. He's going to make Patty some gianduja for tomorrow, but he doesn't have the ingredients for Matt's old favorite, pannacotta.