Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Meltdown avoidance

Proud of self. Avoided usual pitfall of 'getting things done at all costs'.

Oli was out late teaching, so tonight we were going to eat after the kids went to bed. At 7:30 pm, home alone with children, feeding a tired Josie and trying to prepare Lili's dinner while she was in the bath. When Lili emerged and food was still not ready, instead of forging ahead with dinner, took a breath and a step back. With a tired baby hanging off my boob, dinner was not going to happen just then, was it?

A cookie for Lili, an old board book from when she was little and some reading practice on the sofa all snuggled up. Josie fell asleep, Lili had fun because we were being 'naughty'.

Dinner eventually happened and Lili enjoyed it extra because she ate it in the kitchen at a little table she set while I attempted to clear our evil countertop of dishes. I was sort of quiet at the beginning, coming down off the 'get dinner on the table' high, and Lili filled the silence with gossip about classmates.

Good to know that I am capable of learning from previous mistakes. It just took about 30 years.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lili's 6th birthday, take 2 - The snowstorm that never was

My parents were here the week of Lili's birthday and Oli's parents came out for the day of (Just for the day! A morning flight from London and night flight back from Barcelona.)

The day before her b-day we made a massive yellow cake with chocolate frosting.

On her birthday Lili went to school to celebrate with her friends and the adults all went out to lunch. At 2.20pm I got a call on my cell from Lili's teacher telling me that the Education Dept. had ordered all schools to send children home at 3pm because of the possibility of snow.

So we all finished our coffees, ran to the train station, garbage picked a cool green bamboo chair, caught the train and got the girl just in time.

It never snowed, but we had an extra hour and a half for presents.

Carnaval 2012

Carnaval time!

The theme for the year at Lili's school is 'Get out in your neighborhood. Do things for your neighborhood." (It sounds better in Catalan - Mou-te al barri. Mou-te pel barri.) Thus, the suggested costume choice for carnaval was People in the Neighborhood.

Lili was a pastry chef.

We had ordered a super cute pink polka-dot hat and apron...but 2 days before carnaval, the company sent me an email saying they were out of stock and waiting for it to come. A shame since we were going to make Lil into a super sweet pinkalicious pastry lady. Alas, we came up with this at the last minute and were still pleased.

And as ever, her class participated in the neighborhood carnaval parade :)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Vinya Nova

We went here.

In search of a firmer butt.

Alas, I have reached that point when it has become clear that I either:
a) accept my sagging butt, hamstrings and squidgy middle or
b) work out (a little)

I have chosen option b. Mostly because I'm actually pretty thin, but pregnancy has made a few bits of me hangy....and no one, NO ONE, likes the look of a skinny person with saggy bits in a bathing suit.

If I'm to enjoy the beach without being self conscious this year, I must get to it.

Thus, the other day I walked up and down our 11 flights of stairs 5 time. This really only made my calves burn the next day.... But was surprisingly an enjoyable way to start the day. Monotonous task that got the blood pumping.

Am currently working through some butt firming workouts on Fitness Magazine's website. Had to create a free account to view them....but thus far, no spam.

This one seemed to do nothing for my butt but made other things burn.
The Booty-Camp Workout

This one made it burn a little.
The 15-Minute Bootylicious Butt Workout

Still have to try this one.
The Short Shorts Workout

Idea is to pick the best one and do it and the stairs often. With hope, you who live in Barcelona will be able to bounce coins off my bum come June.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

PS! The impressionists leave on Sunday! Go, go, go!

The impressionists exhibit at Caixa Forum ends this Sunday Feb 12!

Go see it and stare at this Boldini painting and love it.


Refotografiar Barcelona: If you like Barcelona, go see this

Went to this Refotografiar Barcelona exhibit today at the Barcelona Photo Archive.

It's a one-room affair, nicely organized around how a few key areas of the city have changed over time. Simple and cleverly done, a nice combo of history and art. Was satisfied by the end, not overwhelmed. Thumbs up.

Added bonus, the archive is located above the Chocolate Museum and to enter, you must pass a glass-enclosed classroom of pastry chefs in training.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

We painted

Lili got a bunch of cool new pots of paint from various friends for her birthday. I had bought a bunch of nice fat new paintbrushes for her birthday party craft. And we already had a big roll of paper. Thus, fun sloppy painting.

Lili recently learned about Picasso at school and went to the Picasso museum here in Barcelona. She was inspired to paint this cup and two flowers into our mural. I can't figure out which painting of his it is...but she swears she saw it...a cup and two flowers in these colors. ?

The blocks in this one are inspired by a painting I bought in Seattle that hangs in our bedroom. The doodles in between were meant to be Miró-esque (Lili sudied him last year and likes copying his doodles).... but we ended up with a Picasso cup and BIG flowers once we opened up that pink and saw how great it was. 

Baby for sale

Monday, February 06, 2012

In which after some shouting and tears, we cook.

Ugh. I'm getting a bit nervous about how things will be when I go back to work in a month....or 4 short weeks. I'm just capable of showering and getting dressed, feeding us all, getting children to where they need to be and meeting up with friends here and there as it is. Add 20 hours of work per week on top of that and where does that leave us?

Had a minor meltdown when at 8pm I knew I was too tired to cook all the meals I had planned to prepare for the week. Oli tried to keep things cool and prevent me from starting an argument. Josie woke up after just an hour of sleep and while breastfeeding her and ruminating about all the things on my plate, I started crying when I got to 'get a hair cut', because on top of everything else, I'M SUPPOSED TO BE PRETTY?! Eck.

In the end, Oli cooked two dishes and I cooked two and we talked about his struggles with learning Catalan.

Sigh. Some Colbert Report and then bed!

2 cottage pies, chicken and carrot pesto pasta, Morroccan-style chicken, fish pie. Violà.