Thursday, June 5, 2008

Fromage, bargains & nothing terribly earth-shattering

Oh, I know, you're all curdling with envy about my big weekend plans to hit the Festival of Fromage. A shout out to all you Frito Pie lovers--and to Coast Rat who followed up on the cheese factory culture in my fair state. I had no idea that eating Frito Pie was a national pastime. Here I thought it was a special Cheese Fest delicacy!

While we're kicking back with cheese curds and cheese burgers Saturday, our neighbors are having a garage sale. Last night they were getting it ready and their grandchildren were over. The grands are around the same ages as Team Testosterone and they play together beautifully--in part because Team Testosterone is happy to see anybody their age come down the driveway and in part because little kids are just cool that way. It didn't take long for Mr. B and Mr. T to figure out what was going on in the M garage. Soon they were crossing the yards and returning with their wallets. The M's had early sales totaling $5.00. Mr. B's the proud owner of water torpedoes and a rear view mirror. Mr. T bought himself a wallet and a pair of binoculars. I cut them off when Mr. B started eyeballing a picture frame and Mr. T began inquiring about the air compressor.

I picked up new garden plants--a late frost terminated my peppers, only the zucchini was saved because of an upended plastic juice bottle. (Note: make Team Testosterone drink more juice.) A little organic shop
carries heritage/heirloom plants and I was jubilant when I learned the owner had sold over 600 of her heirloom varieties this spring. Good taste is catching on! She gave me 4 tomato and 3 pepper plants (red, green and purple! Fun!). One of the tomatoes is a Russian variety which should tolerate our Wisconsin weather really well. I'll take photos of the upside-down tomatoes after the thunderstorms abate.

To celebrate the last day of school we'll head to the library to pick up a first load of summer reading (and pay a large fine), watch Mr. T's soccer game (weather permitting) and go out for ice cream (regardless--I come from a long tradition of ice cream rewards at the end of school, swimming lessons, games and long bike rides). We'll stay up too late, go to bed sticky and dirty, and wake up lazy with a whole day of nothing planned.

Now, bloggy friends, I ask this of you: What summer reading do you suggest? For me and for Team Testosterone?


  1. Reading. I just read "Firefly Lane" by Kristin Hannah and "Change of Heart" by Jodi Picoult. Loved them both. For the team..Gary Paulsen has some great adventure stories both Mr. T could read and you could read to Mr. B and Mr. G.

  2. For the boys, the Warrrior series is popular here. It's about a cat civilization. I don't really fancy it, but it's all the rage with the elementary boys.

    My Side of the Mountain is good for an adventure, too.

    For you... I suggest the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyers. It's really a YA book, but all the mommy's around here are liking it too.

    I just read Comfort Food. That was good. And The Host. I'm really liking the YA books lately for some reason. Oh, I could go on and on. I love summer reading!

  3. Ahhhhhh, no one can resist the lure of a good garage sale, not even the youngsters! There are many bargains to be had at many of them.

  4. Why didn't you let him buy the air compressor? :-)

    The Septimus Heap books are excellent. Sort of a pre-Harry Potter, but not so scary.

    We're also fans of the Shakespeare Can Be Fun series for kids.

  5. End of the year ice cream sounds like a great tradition.
    I'm looking for chapter books to read out loud to my 6 year old for the summer.

  6. If memory serves, your three are on the younger end of the set? Early elementary years? We are Harry Potter fans, of course. My nine year old gobbled up the Penderwicks books by Jeanne Birdsall, I think? Must look that up. I read those too - they're fun and easy. Hardy Boys always a winner with the boys! I'm reading Atonement right now and it's terrific.

  7. summer reading. no brains allowed.

  8. Try Enid Blyton's Five series for the boys, and the Reg Hill's for you...
    LOVE the new blog photo, so YOU, GG!
    Now, tell me, just exactly what is Frito Pie and does it have to have sour cream in it?

  9. When Buddy Budderson was small... and I'm not sure exactly about Team "T", we read a chapter book together every single summer - and big ones at that! Usually Harry Potter, just because a new one would be out at the time. One year, I think he was around eleven - we read "Great Expectations" and while it sounds like a goofy choice, he was enthralled with it and the whole "Miss Havisham" and "who is Pip's benefactor" stuff because it was like a little unraveling mystery. One chapter a night by candlelight is about enough of that.

  10. The Vanishing Act Of Esme Lennox by Maggie O'Farrell

    The Shadow of the wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    Two fabulous books - but why don't you join us reading Either Side of WInter at

    Ps - I can't suggest for the boys - mine are such girlie girls - their suggestions wouldn't make good boy book fodder!

  11. Well, the only things my boys willingly read is Sports Illustrated Kids (and that's pushing it, actually it's doubtful either of them look at it anymore--usually they were just fighting over who got the poster in the middle).

    My entire basement and den have books spilling from every corner and there's NOTHING to read.

    I am a book slut. I like to read trash. Series romance and crap about magic. Knights Templar and Mary Magdelene. Although I'm not much of a fan of the new "chick lit" genre. Give me a good old fashioned Harlequin over that anyday. I am so much help, I'm sure!

    Please don't make me read Eat, Pray, Love....that's all I ask.

  12. Mom on the run -

    EPL is FANTASTIC - not self helpy trash, but beautifully written descriptions that transport you to another world.

  13. I've heard the opposite ends of the spectrum on it, but the description on the back sounds sooooo boring to me. Some love it, some find it difficult to slog through.

    Hey, I forgot, there's always Jane Austen fan lit. I told you I read trash.

  14. "How to Train Your Dragon", "How to Be A Pirate", and the rest, by Cressida Crowell. I couldnt find them in the states, you may have to order them online. They have been devoured by my boys. Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third is a bit of a nerd, and can even READ, which is against the rules, but as the son of Chief Stoick the Vast (O hear his name and tremble, ugh ugh) he has to act the part of a Viking Hero. These books are his memoirs and are full of hilarious pictures and hand-written descriptions by Hiccup himself. A must read for all boys. I got the last three in the series when I went to England.

    I just finished "Mother Night" last night, an old one by Kurt Vonnegut. I love his writing, but it was sad.


Spill it, reader.