Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The New Look of Cousins Day

I'm so glad that we've had as long as we have with our Cousins Days, because we are now entering a new phase, due to the physical problems of both my mother and Kathy. My mother doesn't really like to travel long distances, for many reasons, so bringing her to the Sacramento area for a Cousins Day is out of the question. At the same time, Kathy's oxygen needs for her COPD have made it pretty much impossible to transport her to and from my mother's. The equipment won't fit in my car (and weighs a ton anyway), and we all decided that the old Cousins Days just weren't going to happen again.

HOWEVER, undaunted, Peach and I have worked this all to our advantage and we get two cousins day out of it. She and I go to my mother's, as we always have. We play 65, we drink, we talk, we laugh, we eat, we sleep and then we get up and play, talk and laugh again before Peach and I return home.

But at the same time, we also want to include Kathy, so we have decided to have a second Cousins Day at her house. The only problem is that we have to kick her husband out for the day, we can't drink because of having to drive home afterwards, but we can still play 65, talk, laugh, and eat. There are no overnights at Kathy's house (because her husband has to come home sooner or later!) but we still have a few hours to laugh and bitch and cry and do all the stuff that we have always done when it was the four of us who were together.

So today we had the Sacramento area Cousins Day. Kathy's sister has just moved back into the area and wanted to come and we voted no, at least not this time. We all had things to talk about that she would need too much background to understand and we just wanted it to be the three of us.

Peach said she would bring fruit salad and I was on for the main lunch course. I decided to make a quiche. I got up early to get it done and as I was putting it into the oven, I was uncomfortable because it just didn't look like enough liquid. I decided to re-check the recipe, to make sure I had measured the cream and milk right and that's when I realized I'd left out the eggs! Fortunately, I was able to pour out the milk mixture, add the eggs, pour it back in and it was a great looking (and tasting) quiche.

I took an hour's nap because I'd gotten up at 3 to do the quiche (the dogs think I'm nuts) and at the appointed hour, I packed up all the China gifts and the quiche and headed off to Peach's.

I was very glad of the long drive because I was just about an hour from the end of my audio book, "Tears of the Giraffe," an Alexander McCall Smith book about the Ladies' No. 1 Detective Agency and the drive to Peach's house (driving slow and stopping a block away to finish the last 5 minutes) brought me to the end of the book.

We got to Kathy's shortly before noon and did our usual "what's new in your life" recap, and I passed out the stuff I'd bought for them while we were in China--a nice tea set for Kathy (who collects them and had asked me to get one for her), which I bought in the gift shop at the Great Wall. Hers cost the most, so she only got that and a butterfly scarf.

I had butterfly scarves for all three of them, purple for my mother, blue for Kathy and green for Peach. When our cousin Shirley died several years ago, she said something about whenever we saw a butterfly we would know she was around. Since that time butterflies have taken on a big importance, especially for Peach who had a special bond with Shirl, and who has butterflies visit her frequently. I also bought her a little beaded butterfly coin purse and a couple of little costumed figures. I usually get her salt and pepper shakers when I travel, since she collects them, but I didn't see a single set (other than what was on the tables wherever we ate) and then realized, that Chinese salt their food with soy sauce. Duhhh. But I saw the little figures and thought they were cute, so I got those for her instead.

By then we were ready for lunch and enjoyed it before breaking out the cards. Kathy informed us that she was going to be the big winner today, but alas, I won 2 games and Peach won one. Playing the sympathy card didn't work on us and we cut her no slack just because she's not feeling well.

It was 4 by the time we left. Kathy was ready for a nap and I was hoping to avoid rush hour traffic (which, miraculously, I did, by using my favorite back roads)

I don't like Cousins-Day-For-Three as well as for four, but we are determined to keep the good thing going, however we have to do it.


phonelady said...

Oh I just love alexander Mc call . You do know that the ladies no.1 detective agency is on dvd right ? yes I saw it on hbo about two yrs ago and I recently saw them at the video store and Im sure they are a set on ebay or amazon. I sure wish I could afford the set . anyways I thought i would let you know . I have read all the books . I absoloutly love the ladies in this series . Oh well just thought I would let you know .

Harriet said...

Our favorite Chinese restaurant usually doesn't even put soy sauce on the table, but if you request it, it comes in an adorable little covered pitcher.

You can't go back to China to look for one, but I bet you could find one in the San Francisco area, as a surprise gift for Peach.