Nothing Gold

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay. -Robert Frost

My Photo
Location: Arlington, Virginia, United States

I am a white American middle class suburban housewife trying desperately to tell herself that that is not who she is. One time I was a glowing young ruffian. Oh my God it was a million years ago.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Maybe the greatest thing ever

Yesterday, a really really cool thing happened. Groceries were delivered right to my door! It was everything it was cracked up to be. I'm pretty sure that I will be a regular customer. If only I could get past the feeling that I'm lazy and/or being tricked in some way. But, let me tell you more about it.
I got a coupon in the mail for $20 off of my first order from Peapod by Giant. Their delivery fee is $6.95 on orders over $100 and $9.95 on orders over $50. So, what the hell, why not? First let me describe my normal trips to the grocery store:
1) Find a time to get Levi out of the house when he is well rested and has something in his belly.
2) Go to the store and promise him 'a quarter' when we're finished (some random crap out of the quarter machine).
3) Wrestle and/or cajole him into the cart.
4) Distract him somehow while putting items into my cart (whole foods-bread samples, safeway-coupon machines, giant-??)
5) Talk and play games while standing in line.
6) Try and pay while keeping him sitting down and not playing with the credit card machine.
7) Get a quarter.
8) At the car, sort the groceries as I put them in the trunk so that those that need to go in right away are near the front.
9) Get Levi buckled in and go home. At home, before we get out, give him lecture about how I will be carrying bags and I need him to walk nicely home rather than run off in an opposite direction.
10) Get Levi out and set him on the sidewalk.
11) Chase after him as he runs off laughing.
12) Grab the groceries that need to go in.
13) Carry the bags a short distance, set them down go after Levi, repeat until we make it the 75 or so yards from the car to the door.
14) Give Levi a little talk about how I'm sorry I had to drag him by the arm, but I meant it when I told him to walk home now.
15) Give him a hug and put away the groceries.
16) Get the rest of the bags when Schuyler gets home and he can stay inside with Levi.

Okay, so that's not really so bad, no store meltdowns etc. most of the time, but I still would rather avoid it. So, I pretty much jumped at the chance when I got my coupon. I shopped online in short bursts over a whole day. That way I could remember something and go put it in my cart instead of on a list. When I had a longer stretch of time I browsed the sale section. They had everything I was looking for except chocolate Pediasure, taco sauce and YoBaby drinkable whole milk yogurt. The regular Giant doesn't carry the latter. I suggested the Pediasure on their product request thing.
The prices were comparable to Giant's in store prices, and the sales were pretty good, although I don't think they are the same sales as the store. Here are a few of the sale prices I got for example:
Perdue boneless skinless chicken breast - $2.75/lb
Crispix cereal - $2
Whole grain Wheat Thins - $1.50
Here are a few regular price things I bought:
Kashi Good Friends cereal - $3.69
Ken's Steak House ranch dressing - $2.99
Colgate toothpaste - $2.59
So, that seems about right, doesn't it?
Anyway, the online shopping experience was quite pleasant, and they'll keep my list, which might make it faster the next time. So, I chose a delivery time of 11am-1pm (they have two hour windows all day from 6am to 9:30pm, and you get $1 off if you choose a wider window because you'll be home all day), and waited for my food to arrive. The guy got here at about 11:30. He brought the bags all the way in and asked if I wanted them in the kitchen. He was extremely friendly and explained everything to me very well. He said they wanted me to be happy and blah blah blah about if I wasn't satisfied with any thing. Very good customer service I would say. Two of the things I ordered were unavailable, and as I had picked the 'no substitutions' option they just took them off of the order and said I could get a rain check on the sale prices. It didn't really bother me as the Giant store I go to always has a lot of stuff out of stock. You can choose to have them substitute a comparable item, but I was afraid of getting sweetened peanut butter or regular coke. So I did without a couple of unimportant things.
Also, one hidden cost - tip for the driver. I wasn't sure how much to tip, the only advice I could find online was 'tip is optional - use your discretion'. I gave him $4 because that's what I had. I guess I would've given him a fiver if I had it. Is that being cheap?
Anyway, overall I thought it was pretty great. I got more coupons for $5 off of each of my next four orders, so I think I'll take advantage. If any of my friends wants to use the service, they have a refer a friend thing where you get $15 off and I get $10 off, so let me know. Or you may be able to use the same $20 code I used, I'm not sure.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Yeah Yeah Yeahs

So my 17 year old sister Claire and 15 year old brother Peter are coming to stay with us for a week on Saturday. It should be a lot of fun. Here's the thing though: Claire loves the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and they are going to be at the 9:30 club next Monday (week from today). Schuyler will be out of town. I'm pretty sure that Levi won't go to sleep at a sitter's house, and I don't really want him up that late. I also am not really comfortable with Peter and Claire going alone. So, my question: Are there any fans of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs or of music in general or of going out that would like to go to the concert on us? It should be fun, and I would appreciate some general supervision of the sibs. They are good kids, but they are from a small town and would probably even appreciate the escort.

Friday, March 24, 2006


So, for the lenten season, I've been trying to cut down on the amount of money I spend on luxuries and unnecessaries, like eating out. Then, I've been putting the saved amount into a jar at church for a family that needs it. That info will help explain my little dilemma at the grocery store today. I was in the dairy aisle, about to buy eggs. The regular large eggs were $1 for a dozen. The organic large eggs were $4.79 for a dozen. I stood there for several minutes trying to decide which to buy. If I were to buy the regular eggs, I could add $3.79 to the jar. That's kind of a lot, and those amounts really start to add up over a week. On the other hand, I know how badly chickens are treated at some egg farms. And organic is better for the environment. But maybe the basic needs of people should be more important than the needs of chickens. But perhaps that is being short sighted, perhaps I should worry more about preserving the earth for many future people than the transitory needs of people now. Hmm....
I ended up buying the regular eggs. What would you have done?

Monday, March 20, 2006

Levi is growing!

Which means that he needs new clothes. We put away all of 12-18 month size clothes this weekend because they are too small. This is really wonderful news for us. He's growing! I went shopping (alone) for him today and bought him the things that he needs. This is actually the first time ever that I've gone clothes shopping for him because he needs clothes. He'd been wearing the clothes he'd gotten when he was born and later gifts he'd gotten. I'd bought a few things over time, but only because they were cute and on sale, not because he really needed them. Except for shoes, we have needed new shoes. Anyway, it is pretty great. Also, shopping without him is awesome. I can look through racks and walk between stores quickly and just get things done. Also, I'd forgotten what it is like to stand in line and just stand in line.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

I Rock!

I love March Madness! I'm tearing it up in ESPN's tournament challenge. I got 7 out of 8 games right today, including the Wichita State over Tennessee upset. As of tonight, I rank 4005 out of more than 2 million. Is that awesome, or what? 99.9th percentile, baby. Here's the proof:
(The winning bracket is called 'What The???')

Friday, March 17, 2006

What to do?

Folks around these parts pay absolutely no attention to flashing school zone signs. Whenever I drive past Sidwell Friends school on Wisconsin at about 3, the sign that says 'School Zone Speed Limit 15 When Flashing' is flashing, but everyone keeps on driving 40. The speed limit is 30, I think.

What should I do in this situation? Should I...
a)Drive 15 and ignore the honking and gestures this creates?
b)Drive just fast enough to avoid being honked at (about 25)?
c)When in Rome...?

I usually end up doing (b), and trying to be extra vigilant for small dashing pedestrians. I'm then going quite a bit slower than the other cars, but still fast enough to do serious damage should I hit a child. Although, to be honest, I'm not sure I've ever seen any of the students near the road. It is Sidwell Friends after all. Those kids are too rich to walk anywhere. They all have their moms or chauffeurs pick them up in those weird Mercedes SUV's. But still, one may wander out to the road, and I wouldn't want to hit it, even with my small car. Anyways, what do you do in this situation? Or, if it's not like this in your neighborhood, what do you think I should do?

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Ash Wednesday

Dust you are, and to dust you will return.