Sunday Sampler

Katie wants to say that the burping contest last night was all Paul. She claims that she could never get a good voluminous burp going, but Paul excelled at length, volume, and short downtime between bursts. So apparently Paul won. He had an admiring audience in his siblings. His mother was rolling her eyes all over the basement.

Yesterday, Grandpa H took 60% of my children to the Scottish fair while I had my hair done. Jimmy didn't get to go because he had to work and Matt had a baseball game. So Katie, Paul and Hayley got a dose of their Scottish heritage and they got to spend some quality time with Grandpa. Dad, I hope the kids were good. I didn't get to show you my haircut.

Anyway, since I didn't go (Dad didn't invite me...sniff. Not. I'm glad the kids got time with Grandpa without mother hovering and taking over) I gave Katie the assignment to take pictures. I forgot to tell her to get pictures of herself and Paul and Hayley and Grandpa. As a result, all the pictures featured the activities and performances at the festival without a single shred of evidence that they actually attended. Oh well. So you get no pictures of my kids but you can see a Scottish cow, a caber being tossed, and a group of bagpipers.Also this weekend, Paul got himself a regular yardwork job. Our neighbors behind us had not mowed yet this year and the grass and dandelions were getting quite tall. Other neighbors have complained about that yard since the long-time owner moved out two years ago. There have been a series of renters since then, and the yard doesn't get regular maintenance. Instead of whining about their yard, I urged Paul to go knock on the door and ask if they would like him to mow the lawn for $15. He was hesitant, but after more encouragement from Jim, Paul went over and knocked on the door and asked. And the residents said "sure!" So he mowed the lawn and they paid him $25! And they said he could come back every 2-3 weeks and mow. He's very excited! Paul likes to mow, although he did do three lawns on Saturday (our lawn, the neighbor's, and my mom's) and got some blisters. But Paul doesn't complain much about anything (except Matt and Hayley). He just takes it all in stride.


Dennis said…
It was a real treat for me to share some of what I know about Scotland to some of my grandchildren. I had a great time and I hope the kids enjoyed themselves. I'm sorry we didn't get to stay for the most thrilling part (read my favorite) - the massed bands but seeing just a few made the day worthwhile for me and I hope for the kids. I was able to explain to them a little about clans, Scottish dancing, bagpipes, caber toss and weight throwing. They seemed particularly interested in the weights of the various tossed items. For example the caber is 16 - 22 ft long and weighs anywhere from 90 - 120 lbs. It is held by the bottom of the pole and tossed up and hopefully flipped at a 12 o'clock position. The sheaf toss is done with a 22 lb sheaf of various matter including straw, wood chips, cow chips and dirt. It is picked up with a pitch fork and tossed over a bar 15 ft high. The height increases until there are no contestants left without a miss. It is called a sheaf toss because sheaf closely resembles sheep which is what was originally used.
I had a meat pie (delicious) but no haggis. Italked to my mom later that day and she was thrilled that the kids got to learn a little about their Scottish heritage. She also said she loved haggis. She said that when granny made it she used all of the organs from a sheep plus oatmeal, mixed it up and cooked it in a sheep or pig stomach. There is a very formal was of presenting haggis at a dinner party. The server brings the haggis in on a large platter while a piper "pipes" the haggis in.
Thank you Katie, Paul & Hayley for indulging your old grandpa.
Yeah, they came home full of measurements and explanations. Hayley was impressed that I actually possess a MacIntosh tartan kilt, although she said it's different than the one they saw in the clan book. We looked it up and the tartan I have (from Grandma) is the modern tartan. The kids enjoyed watching the dog herd the sheep too. We might have to go next year.