Saturday, November 12, 2005

Snapshots from Iowa

Getting Wood
My folks and I spent a glorious couple hours exploring Grant Wood at 5 Turner Alley at the always impressive Cedar Rapids Museum of Art on Thursday. This retrospective of works by American Gothic painter and Cedar Rapids native son Grant Wood is (I believe) the first ever collection of so much of his oeuvre in one place at one time. A Cedar Rapids native son myself, I grew up steeped in knowledge and lore about Grant Wood, I attended the grade school named after him and the junior high school where he taught art, I met his sister (who is immortalized in American Gothic (she's the one on the left)) before she died, and I've even been collecting prints of my favorite Grant Wood paintings over the years. And I added to my collection this weekend -- to the tune of almost $200 (including SWEET custom framing).

Not getting wood
My sister and her husband still don't have a headboard on their bed, so we all stopped by a furniture shop this afternoon to browse through some options. My sister found a nice wooden one she really liked, but my brother-in-law told her he "did not want to get wood in (our) bedroom."

Finishing my Christmas shopping
(At least for my parents.) I bought my mom a Grant Wood print and paid to have it framed this weekend. I was still behind on what to get my dad for his October birthday -- much less Christmas -- when their 20+-year-old garbage disposal crashed last night. So I bought them a new one and helped install it today. Which earned me tons of cash back on my credit card, tons of macho points on my gay card and a bad case of frightfully slimy dishpan hands.

The Princess Party
Hot on the heels of being más macho que su mama, I attended my niece's princess party at a local gymnastics emporium. (You know: because princesses use balance beams. And stuff.) The best part: Lots of cake and ice cream. The worst part: LOTS of pink. And screaming children (albeit screaming-because-of-exuberant-happiness children, but screaming children nonetheless).

Pretty, Pretty Princess
This is the name of a game. A game my niece got for her birthday. A game we all played when we got home from the princess party. A game that involves moving a little jewel-toned game piece around a board and slowly donning a matching necklace, bracelet, earrings, ring and even a tiara. A game my niece miraculously won! On her birthday! Leaving her hapless uncle wearing only one earring and his necklace.

What a pretty, pretty loser.

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