Sunday, December 19, 2010

Rational Ritual

This past Wednesday night we sat around the table, rolled the die and pulled scenarios from Mr. Bowles' Marketplace Scenario Randomizer...for the last time.

So interesting how doing something once a week for a year becomes such a habit, such a ritual.

Over the past year we've both cheered and boo-ed the die roll, rearranged menus to suit the scenarios and listen to the girls quarrel countless times over whose turn it is to roll the die.

In the end the last scenario of the rationing year was a dud...only half the usual amount of flour was available, but we have plenty in the pantry anyway.

The week before was a doozy, though. Eowyn wanted from-scratch macaroni and cheese for dinner when a gaggle of family was to be visiting to celebrate her birthday. But when we pulled scenarios for that week Mr. Bowles' informed us that only half the amount of cheese was available at the store. The cheese supply in the fridge was not bountiful, so there was no way we could acquire enough cheese to make macaroni and cheese for a crowd of sixteen.

As a friend said, Mr. Bowles' giveth and Mr. Bowles' taketh away.

So, we had to go to Plan B: roasted chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy and Brussels sprouts (you gotta love an eight-year-old that asks for Brussels sprouts).

It will be strange, if not liberating, to be able to make a shopping list without consulting the Randomizer. There are several aisles that I think I haven't even stepped a foot in during the rationing year. Everything in the store will be available for purchase. Everything.

And I know that I originally said that I would compost the Randomizer when the rationing project was complete, but now I am (based on a reader's advice) considering holding on to it for a while.

Some habits die hard.

--Rational Mama

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