ordinary times

days after tragedies seem endless and unending all at the same time.  When caught up in the busy-ness of daily life, everything seems normal, and then I get into the car and hear the news, or I see a FB post, or there’s some other trigger that jolts me back to reality.  It was this way after Newtown, Hurricane Sandy, and 9/11, and I suspect (sadly) this ‘unsettledness’ will make its appearance far too often (even once is too often) in the future for my preference.

But at home, life Chez Sato goes on.  It was a busy week.  We celebrated hanami on Sunday.  The blooms were just shy of being completely full, and the wind had picked up a bit and made it chilly (brrrr!), and then we had the bad luck of scheduling our picnic whilst the entire population of Essex County decided to come to the park for Bloomfest and a Japan Day Festival.  That made driving and subsequently parking nearly impossible. But a few friends did brave the crowds, and it was a lovely day.

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The food in the wooden bowl is called “chirashi-zushi.”  It’s pickled ginger mixed with sushi rice and topped with egg, cucumber, and shrimp (or sometimes raw fish).  It’s one of my favorite Japanese dishes–if you ever get the chance to try some, do!

Sunday segued nicely into Thing 3’s birthday on Monday. She chose to have her birthday dinner at the kaiten-sushi (conveyor belt sushi) restaurant, and was determined to eat “9 plates.”  After her third plate, she changed her goal to “9 pieces.”  This is new for Thing 3–she’s usually too determined to make mid-race adjustments (for lack of a better metaphor) which sets her up for lots of disappointment.  I’m glad to see her do this on her own, and still be pleased with accomplishing her adjusted goals.  (Am I reading too much into this?  Because honestly, 9 plates is too much sushi for one kid.  But really, until that moment, she would doggedly chase impossibilities and then her disappointment would be palpable.  Sigh).  On a personal note, honestly, it was a little hard to celebrate Monday night; the older Things and the Mister and I were all subdued, but determined not to let it thwart Thing 3’s fun. Unfortunately now, her birthday is not only tax day, but also the day of a bombing, and if she grows up and settles in this area, that’s how it will be remembered.

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The cake, by the way, was from Whole Foods.  It’s really rich and we haven’t even gotten through half of it yet.  The ladybug on the left–that was cake, too!  Nice touch!

After the annual nod to consumerism opening of the gifts, I hunkered down for some knitting.  It’s what I do best when I need to process.  Even though running has become my go-to “figure shit out” activity, when things are really, really complicated, knitting helps me more.  And as a result, I finished Solis:

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My thoughts: the wool/cotton blend is a bit heavy.  The original is made in a silk/wool blend, which I think would be equally as heavy.  I think I’d like this better in just a merino, or maybe a cashmere.  I also don’t like how low the neckline goes.  It’s pretty, but it’s not my style. (In another life, I was either involved somehow in the French Revolution and lost my head in the guillotine, or was attacked by a vampire.  I don’t like to expose my neck that often, and until recently was most often found wearing turtlenecks.)  The sweater fits my womannequin a bit more nicely than it fits me–she’s a bit bustier than I am.  That being said, I’m pleased with how it looks and while it won’t be my favorite sweater, I will get some wear out of it, if only for one season.  And one final note: my womannequin is my medal holder.  How do all you folks deal with your medals? I just cannot bring myself to hang them on the wall (seems like bragging, and really, while they’re nice and all, they’re not really my style of decor).

Since I was able to stick a fork in Solis and call it done, I promptly cast on for the everyday linen raglan, and decided with a lace panel up the sleeve.  I’ll make a few mods to the pattern beside the lace panel–I may raise the back neckline slightly (right now it’s more boat-necked, and my shoulders are too narrow to carry off that look.



As tonight is Thursday night, it’s the regular Thursday night fun run at my LRS.  I miss, miss, miss this activity so much, and it feels as though I’ll be away from it for a bit longer.  My ankle still swells up to a nice round ball (despite the attractive compression socks I’ve been sporting daily) by the middle of the day.  I’m trying to find the positives and improvements (they aren’t many): my lower leg doesn’t swell nearly as much as it used to.  Oh, and I walked around my block twice this week.  It took me 11 minutes to go .63 miles (big block).  This is depressing.  But at least I went around the block, and while it hurt to do so, it didn’t hurt worse afterwards, just the same.  My PT says to keep plugging forward.  But the inactivity is killing me.  Yes, I can ride my bike, but there’s just not the same level of sweat equity.  And next week I’ll start using the elliptical at work.  But that is just tedious.

I have this sinking suspicion that this injury is going to completely wreck my running year–both physically and financially.  I registered for three races in December 2012 (to get the better prices), and now one is out of the mix already (Bruges) and the other two are on the line (Fleet Feet Soldier Field 10M in Chicago and Old Port Half Marathon in July).   The Old Port Half Marathon was going to be my goal race (to get close to a 2 hour finish), but each day of no improvement pushes that goal further and further to the edge of the cliff.

Obviously I need to take a lesson from Thing 3.  9 plates? Nope, 9 pieces.


  1. I have been offline the past day or so … so now it is…. LIST TIME!

    1) The chirashi-zushi dish sounds yummers. I wonder if they have it at the sushi place I go to? I know I can order things off their menu…but few people do. Most just grab off the sushi track. Hmmm….I will have to see the next time I go there.

    2) Happy belated birthday to Thing 3 !!!! And tell her, eating 9 plates would NOT have been an accomplishment anyway….oh lord … that is wayyyyy too much lol. I could not eat 9 plates on my best day … or even on my 2nd or 3rd or 4th best days!

    3) As for her birthday being on ‘that’ day. Remind her … it is a day to celebrate her birthday … and when it comes around and people observe and remember those who lost their lives and got injured in 2013, remind your daughter, it is also a day that the people there … the whole of your country … they banded together and was also a day that showed the incredible goodness too.

    4) Those are a LOT of medals. Wooo hoo. (I have a couple …. they are not ‘winning’ medals, more ‘finishing’ medals…which I like *smiles*. I take it yours are for running? (Mine are for biking events I have been in.)

    • lots of sushi places do serve chirashi-zushi–just check the menu. (or, ask if they can make it for you, if they’re making sushi, they have the ingredients).

      all my medals are “finisher’s medals.” I haven’t won anything in a long time (or ever). But one (Reach the Beach NJ from last fall) we were 1st in our age group (Men’s Masters) and 9th overall. I think that will probably be my best finish ever–and even though it was as part of a team, I’ll own it!

      • Oh…how far was Reach the Beach … that just SOUNDS horrific. lol. (By the way, I hang mine from one of the edges of one of my curtain rods lol. Not quite classy … more, out of the way!)

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