Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Master of the Universe!

I spent four days struggling to master the formating for the Siren's newsletter, and I finally did it. It was such a thrill to see it finally uploaded online and looking decent. For so many days I'd stared at missing text, huge blank spots, uneven lines, and different sized fonts that I thought I'd go mad. I wanted to throw my computer out the window. I wanted to jump out the window. I literally sat at the computer and and screamed out of sheer frustration. (Well, yelled very loudly.) (Actually I swore in a rather louder than usual voice after making sure my kids were nowhere in hearing and the window was closed.)
But now it is done, the newsletter formatted and it looks GOOD. Ha! I did it.
Here is the link:
It works.
And I have to thank my friend Katherine Kingston who has been formating this newsletter for the past two years, and whose task I have now taken over. Kathrine, you deserve a medal.

On the bright side - my daughters lice seem to have been irradicated. No more nits. And the English lesson with the preschoolers went fine - one of the little boys showed up in full pirate regalia including plastic sword. I managed to get it away from him and we sang 'Ten little Indians" and he wanted to sing ten little pirates, so we did that too.
My son was on duty today and I went to the fire department and hung around waiting for him to get back from a 'mission'.

It's January, which means that it's 'the galette du roi' time. That's a sort of flaky pastry with sweet almond filling, and in the cake is a little china figurine. They used to use a big dried beans, or 'feve', which is why the French call it a 'feve' but it's really a little glass figure (can be just about anything - animal, person, cartoon character...) and the person that gets it in his peice of cake is king or queen, and gets to wear a flashy cardboard crown. It's a cute tradition, and it lasts all month, although the real reason for the cake is the Epiphany.
What happens is you cut the cake while the youngest person at the table hides beneath the table, and you put each slice on a plate and ask 'who's this for?' and the child beneath the table calls out names, and that's how you divide up the cake. If there are no children, then you cut up the cake. But you're expected to wear the crown no matter how old you are.
The other day my husband got the 'feve', and he put the crown on. He got up and went outside to take the dogs out right after dinner, and forgot the take the crown off. He was walking around with the camoflage jacket I got in the states for him to go hunting, his red flannel pyjama bottoms my sister gave him for Christmas, and his gold crown.
The neighbors have taken to giving me sympathetic looks.
I wonder why?


Bonita said...

In Louisiana, we have the King Cake tradition, much like the French tradition, but with a baby in the cake. The person who gets the slice with the baby buys the next cake. Glad to hear that your daughter's hair problem is better.

Anonymous said...

That sounds like a good tradition - what's the baby? A little figurine?
We used to have a whole collection of feves, I think my daughter sold them at the last village sale here though. They sort of float around the house, I find them in drawers and in the bottom of baskets, lol.

Bonita said...

'Tis a tiny plastic baby figurine about one inch long. It use to be inserted in the cake, but now it is placed with Mardi Gras beads in a plastic wrapper on top (because of law-suits from people who bit or swallowed the baby). The King Cakes are associated with Mardi Gras and usually only available during Carnival season (sometime in Jan. until Fat Tuesday -- day before Ash Wednesday).

Anonymous said...

That sounds like fun - I bet kids love the baby and the beads!
I can't imagine the lawsuits that would happen if the French galette became popular in the US. The figurines are made of china! LOL!
I suppose that would be dangerous, but it's easy to see the figurine most of the time. But my neighbor's son bit into one the other day. (no damage done, thank goodness!)

Gabriele C. said...

Ah, the Bohnenkönig. I've seen the Breughel canvas in the museum Schloss Wilhelmsthal in Kassel. Didn't find a pic online, though.

ORION said...

Hey Sam!
I am buried under edits.
And websites.
And Blurbs.