Henry, Open Mic 

Before soccer practice, the Fry Family Quartet made a stop at school for the annual 4th grade poetry reading. Henry’s class has been doing a unit of inquiry focused on poetry, culminating in today’s open mic performance. Henry read two of his poems, Confusion and Seaweed. Pretty impressive stuff. After the live show, we perused the kids’ other work (Henry’s pictured below), which hung around the room. Nice work, Henry. You’re a poet, and I didn’t know it. 

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Henry is Ten

As Kristine and I walked around Lake Padden this morning, we reminisced about another 3-mile walk she took exactly 10 years ago. At 40 weeks pregnant, and after 2 months of bed rest, Kristine decided to walk to Blue Moon Burger, where she ordered the spicy jalapeño burger. That, combined with the mile-and-a-half walk home, quickly led to labor and the birth of Henry Owen Fry, who turned 10 today. 

The large volume of red meat preceding his birth probably explains Henry’s preference for a juicy steak birthday dinner. He also likes spicy food. 

Everybody was extremely pleased with how Henry’s 10th birthday unfolded. It started, of course, with breakfast in bed. Immediately after chess club, we opened presents and ate cupcakes. Nothing fancy. Small presents. We told Henry he should go downstairs to play the new video game Ruby gave him. Waiting for him at the bottom of the stairs was a new big boy bike. We’d successfully underset expectations and overdelivered. 

Happy birthday, Henry. I’m so glad Kristine ate that burger 10 years ago. 

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Optional Lenten Dispensation 

For those among the Fry Lodge Faithful who do not know, the Catholic tradition requires abstinence from meat on Fridays during Lent. Unless, that is, one lives in the Seattle Archdiocese, which is granting an optional dispensation from this obligation because St. Patrick’s Day lands on a Friday this year. Corned beef and cabbage it is! 

Excerpted from this week’s Sacred Heart Church bulletin 

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Chocolate Chip Pancake Tuesday 

Seven years ago we adopted the Pancake Tuesday tradition at Fry Lodge. This year we added chocolate chips into the mix. 

Tomorrow, we give up snow for Lent.  So help me God. 

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Fry Lodge Winter of Discontent 

When we moved back to the Pacific Northwest from New York City, among the things we were looking forward to were Western Washington’s mild winters. So far this winter we’ve had five significant snowfalls, four school closures, three slips on the ice, two snowed in cars and one frozen Lake Padden (first time in 20 years). 

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The Henry Book Club 

I woke up in a cold sweat, grabbing my phone to check the time. 1:30 AM.  The book was due back at the library in the morning. I still had 150 pages to go. I quietly crept downstairs so I could turn on a light to read by without waking up Kristine. I managed to barely finish before falling back to sleep. 

Henry returned the book to his school library in the morning, with instructions to check out another one of Carl Hiaasen’s works of middle grade fiction

Over the holidays I became hooked on the books Henry was reading. I’m now on my fourth Carl Hiaasen children’s book. Henry and I have formed a two-person book club of sorts. He reads them first and then recommends my next book, which I always have to read before he’s required to return it to the library. It’s a good system. I do better when I have a deadline, and I’m really enjoying books like Chomp, Hoot, Scat and Flush. Plus, it’s been fun to discuss with Henry the themes of these books, which typically involve saving animals threatened by the unchecked advances of development in South Florida.  

Kristine recently reminded me that I, too, have a library card. But the Henry book club is way more fun. 

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End-of-Year Fry Lodge Poll

I know confidence in polls has plummeted, but I’ve decided to throw caution to the wind on this last day of 2016 and take one of my own. I asked every member of Fry Lodge what their favorite memory is from 2016. Here are the results:

10th Anniversary Trip to Hawaii: 75%

Summer of ProjectWA: 25%

Given our small sample size, I’d say our margin of error is plus or minus 75%. Others at Fry Lodge might say 25%. I’ll leave it up to Nate Silver.

Happy New Year to the Fry Lodge Faithful.

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