A day at home and some Bach

No recipes today. I’ve been slightly obsessed with making tortillas and filling them with pureed black beans and veggies (my husband has nicknamed these ‘bean-a-dillas’ – ha). They’re not very exciting, plus I think I already posted the tortilla recipe.

Today’s run: 3 + miles, pushing the double stroller – that counts as double mileage, right? 😉 Really, I don’t mind running with the girls in the stroller. I always dread it, but then after the first few minutes it’s not so bad. I usually don’t have to run with them because I get out early enough in the morning that they’re either still asleep or eating breakfast with dad. Today, however, I went on a much-needed cleaning spree and ended up with a later run, necessitating taking the girls. We ran to the library, and then enjoyed story time and an impromptu playdate with some friends who also showed up for story time.

I spend a good bit of time grumbling about where I live (‘everything is so far away! it’s so rural! there are chickens a block away from us! we’re surrounded by rednecks! whole foods is an hour away! these accents are driving me crazy – I have no idea what people are saying to me!’ etc. etc.), but I do have to admit that the town we live in does have some decent attributes. We can walk to the library and the coffee shop (conveniently located a block apart); we can walk to a few restaurants (none of which have much we can eat, but still….); we can walk to the town square, which has some cute shops; we can walk to several playgrounds;  we can take a longer walk and get to the grocery store and post office. So it’s not all bad, and I really need to remember that. Sure, there are some things that could be better – we feel very isolated sometimes, in terms of making friends and meeting people who share our interests – and it is a totally different culture from that which I grew up in, but really, day-t0-day, we have it pretty good. There’s not much traffic 😉 and although I have a looooong drive to work, I at least have a good job, as does my husband. Our girls have made friends with some of our neighbors, and there’s plenty of animals around for them to see.

Still, though, it’s hard to balance the day-to-day with our long-term goals. I look at the area in which we live and worry about what sort of environment our girls will be growing up in and what sort of values they will be exposed to at school. Parenting is so tough, and it’s so hard to know what is best for your kid – and in today’s economy, it’s not as if you can just up and move to create a better opportunity for your kids. We can’t just move back to the northeast without jobs, as much as we’d like to. So I guess I just need to work hard at teaching my kids what we think is important, and helping them develop into kind, compassionate, intellectual, curious, understanding, hard-working, ambitious people. Really, we’d face parenting challenges wherever we lived; in more urban, educated/liberal areas, there is SO much pressure for kids to get into the right school, do all the right activities, get into an Ivy League school, etc. etc. Having grown up in such an environment, I know there are problems with those values, too. Parenting is just so tough sometimes. Sigh….

On a brighter note, husband and I played together in a concert tonight, which has become a rare occurrence for us. We played in a performance of a Bach cantata, and it was thoroughly enjoyable. I used to play all the time; music has been a huge part of my life since about 3rd grade. In recent years, as I’ve shifted my professional life to law, I’ve been more of  a listener and less of an active performer. I still always played, but just in our living room. I try to play a few concerts a year; as a brass player, I’m in the back of the orchestra, so it’s not like I am responsible for big solo parts. I love listening to music, but I also really love playing it and being part of producing it. Tonight was a good reminder of that.

Questions, just because I’m curious:

1. What do you like about where you live? What would you change? I like being within walking distance of stuff. I don’t like being an hour away from a mid-size city, and I don’t like the mostly closed-minded attitude of so many people around us.

2. Is there anything you used to do – a hobby or interest – that you’ve had to give up or scale back on? Do you have plans to incorporate it back into your life sometime? I would love to do more music, but I don’t see doing more than teaching private lessons to a few students and playing a few concerts a year for quite some time – until I’m no longer a practicing lawyer, probably.

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