1. Here we are:
Today was Mom's 87th birthday and Christy, Carol, and I turned the occasion into a Sibling Outing to Coeur d' Alene. We drove over the hill just after noon and went straight to Daft Badger. We asked for Mom's blessing that we ate our lunch in her honor at Daft Badger rather than at her favorite spot, Applebee's -- or at another of her favorites, Red Lobster. We asked her to understand that Christy hadn't been to Daft Badger and she'd heard Carol, the Deke, and I enthuse about how much we enjoy it, so this was the perfect day for us to have lunch there. We enjoyed our lunch confident that Mom was delighted that we were celebrating her birthday and honoring her memory and, moreover, that we were all so happy that Christy got to go to Daft Badger for the first time.
2. Along with talking about and remembering Mom, a couple of other things happened at Daft Badger that made me very happy. First, Darrell Dlouhy, Daft Badger's co-founder and the obligated one at the brewery, was in the house and so I got to introduce him and Christy and Carol. I told Darrell why we were at his establishment and I started to choke up, but I think I hid it pretty well. I experienced a sudden rush of emotion about Mom not being with us and I was feeling Darrell's loss. His younger brother, Duane, passed away in June and it hit me that we'd both suffered significant loss lately. Conversation lightened right up, though, as we talked a bit about Daft Badger's third anniversary patio party that will take place on Saturday, January 20th and that everything was in place for this big and fun event.
The second thing that made me very happy? I introduced my sisters to the heavenly sweetness of Daft Badger's Bourbon Stout. Once we had finished our sandwiches, I ordered a 12 oz glass of Bourbon Stout and three taster glasses so we could each have some. I didn't know if Christy and Carol realized how sweet and slightly boozy a barrel-aged imperial stout can be. For me, this Bourbon Stout combines chocolate-y sweetness, the brown sugary boozy splendor of Maker's Mark, and just the right hint of hoppy bitterness. It's not a beer to pound down. For me -- and I hope for Christy and Carol -- it was a perfect dessert, not only adding a sweet finish to our meal, but giving us a last bit of the euphoria a little bit of strong beer creates, making the half an hour or so that we spent talking at our table after we ate all the more pleasant.
3. We weren't quite ready to leave Cd'A after lunch, so we piled into the Malibu and bolted downtown to Calypsos Coffee Company for a coffee drink before heading back to Kellogg. Christy and Carol relaxed on a couch and I eased myself into a soft and comfortable chair and we continued to talk about this and that and enjoyed our hot brews.
I received a text message from Shawn telling me that Trevor was coming by our house to take care of a few things, so we piled back into the Malibu and arrived at our house just as Trevor did.
Among other things, Trevor put up curtain rods in the kitchen. Later in the evening, the Deke put the finishing touches on the kitchen curtains she'd been sewing and now they are up. I love them. With curtains in place, once the light is right in the kitchen, I'll start taking pictures of what the kitchen looked like before this project and what it looks like now and posting them. I want to take the photographs in natural light. For everything else like cooking and working in the kitchen, I love our new kitchen lights, but for taking pictures, I don't like the way the light reflects off the walls nor do I like, for photographs, some of the shadows these lights cast. It's no big deal on a day to day basis, but for taking pictures, I'm going to hold out until the natural light I want fills the room.