February 12, 2008

Around the world in 80 minutes

My family has an acronym we use often. TITF (read Tih-t-ffff). I'd give you a chance to guess what it stands for, but I doubt you'd get it. So, here it is: taking it too far. We created the acronym one night when my sister took a joke "too far." My mom takes on projects with such gusto that we began using it frequently in reference to her...exuberance? Her planning gone nuts extreme passion has surfaced in myself and my three sisters. When she pulls out the spreadsheet detailing the meals we will enjoy while visiting her house, we glance at each other and whisper, "TITF". We get a good laugh when mom's doing it. Sadly, it rears it's ugly head every once in a while in our lives--while planning a brunch, going on vacation, or...doing school projects.

My kids and I decided to take part in a geography night. When I asked them if they would like to just go and visit or be in charge of a table; they all voted to do our own table. This could possibly be the first indication that the "TITF" curse has already passed on. As the story continues you will find that I am too far gone to ever help my kids recover and lead normal lives. Anyway...back to geography night. I coerce them into deciding that Ethiopia would be the best choice for a country. We visit the library, read books, look online at info and draw a diagram of how we want our big board to turn out. At night, while the kids are asleep, Seth catches me cutting out photos and matting them on cardstock. His accusing tone stings, but I reply, "Oh, honey, you really don't want the kids using a papercutter. Come on, this is a matter of safety!"

The kids were so pleased when the display board gets finished almost overnight. We press on and soon the big day arrives. There are a few loose ends to tie up. Everett is most concerned with what outfit he will be wearing (definite indicator of TITF, why MUST we have costumes?). Ella has borrowed a traditional Ethiopian dress from friends, so Seth digs around in the attic and pulls out a soccer jersey. This pacifies Everett, and he couples it with a corduroy suitcoat (since that is what an Ethiopian boy wore in one of our books) and jeans with holes in the knees. Later that night he will wonder why no one seems to 'get his costume' but for now he's pleased. Eli wears a running shirt because he wants to be like the famous runner, Haile GebreSelassie. I'm just wondering how I'm going to pull together Ethiopian cuisine.

Our plan was to visit one of three Ethiopian restaurants for lunch. All about 1 hour away and they are all closed on Mondays. So that plan didn't work out. Do I admit defeat? No way--if we only provide a display board, children's books, Ethiopian coffee service set, Ethiopian money, traditional clothes, but no food? Well, we wouldn't be TITF, thus letting down our family curse. So, I hit the internet and attempt to cook my first Ethiopian meal ever. That is a post in itself, so I'll leave you with pictures of our successful trip around the world.






1 comment:

Jen said...

Could that be Taking It Too Far??? Just had to venture a guess........heheheh

I have to laugh so hard! That is so funny.

I want to hear all about your adventures in cooking. I haven't been brave enough to crack open my ET cookbook and give a meal a whirl yet! Was it hard?