Triumphs
Wii're In Business

Old Man Winter

Whew! What a freezing, cold, blowing, raining, blustering, snowing day!

We had to get up at 0430 this morning, in order to meet Chloë's 0900 call time in Charlottesville. (I later got yelled at by both Jack and Sophia, who told me I'm not allowed to wake them up in the night anymore, and that they're supposed to get up in the daytime, when the sun is out. Poor babies.)

None of the kids slept on the way up there, to my knowledge. I did, though. I'm sick - again!!! - with a sore, swollen throat and all the rest of it, and I eventually had Rob take over the driving duties so I could nap.

When I woke up, we were NW of Richmond, and outside was a Winter Wonderland! There was so much snow, more than the kids have ever seen in their lives. More than I've seen in a long time. It was beautiful! The streets were cleared, but there was a white dusting on every other surface, out in the country. I wanted to stop and take pictures, but we didn't have the time. And I never did get pictures of outside, dammit. I should have done so during the shoot.

We arrived at the designated cabin exactly on time. Today's shoot was for Chloë's role as Lucy in the student film An Origin by Christopher Strider. We first met with him in December, at Richmond coffee shop, so she's been practicing her script for a long time now.

We ended up waiting about two hours before it was time for her to go down to the site. In that time, the monkeys were all over everything, and it wasn't hard to understand why: the cabin, which belongs to Chris's grandparents, was very old and filled with interesting artifacts of time gone by. A simpler time. They also rehearsed the scene a few times, and I think they were impressed with how well she knew her lines (and there were a lot of them).  And I took a few pictures of the inside of the small cabin:

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Sophia laughing with Mark, who played opposite Chloë in the movie

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The right side of the living room, and part of the kitchen in back

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Rob standing on the left side of the cabin, in front of the bathroom door. Yes, there was indoor plumbing, thankfully!

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Chloë getting ready for the first read-through of her scene

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Chloë in costume, fresh out of an argument with Sophia over where to sit on the couch. Hey, at least it was important.

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Sophia coloring and writing with Anne, a production assistant

Rob was going to stay back with the Littles while I went down to the shoot with Chloë, but two steps into the snow with my piggy toes hanging out of my sandals (I live in them, year-round), and I said, "Nope, I'm not doing this!" I ran in and switched places with Daddy, disappointed that again I wouldn't see her doing her thang.

We were alone in the cabin then, just me and the Nons, who were begging for food. I found them something to eat, and then declared it time for a nap. They were definitely tired, having gotten up super early, so I thought it would be easy. At first they cuddled up with me on the cot, then they both insisted on sleeping under the large coffee table. And they did drift off eventually... until my phone rang and my dad wanted to chit-chat! Argh!

Then Anne came in to set up for lunch, and that was the end of that non-napping session.

Everyone came in then, and took their turns making sandwiches for lunch. Anne was actually very much on top of things, and she insisted the kids be fed first AND pretty much made their lunches. So I sat and helped the littles with their food, and then Rob brought me a teensy portion of hummus and cheddar cheese. People kind of wanted to know why I wasn't eating, so I just said I'd had stomach surgery and couldn't really eat much.

After lunch, everyone left again to finish the shoot, and to their great disappointment, I put the Littles back down for naps. This time, Jack slept on the cot with me, and Sophie lay on the other couch. She zonked right out and was snoring away, but Jack tossed and turned the whole hour or so. He never really slept at all. I knew he would be sound asleep in the car on the way home.

When everyone returned, Chloë was frozen to the core and ran into my arms, crying and telling me she never wanted to do an acting job like that again! Meaning, in the cold and snow. My poor girl! Chris said she did a really great job, and Mark told me he wished he was that good at her age! She only cried for a moment, and then she was cheerful and chipper again, saying she'd had fun and was proud of herself.

We said goodbye to Chris, Anne, Mark, the other guy whose name I never learned, and Chris's mom. I tried to back out of the curvy driveway, with Chris's help, but I couldn't do it without taking out half the woods! So Rob and I switched places, and he did the deed. We got a little bit lost on the way out of the country, but we quickly found our way. We stopped at a Taco Bell for a quick snack, and then I took over the driving.

Man, I don't know what is up with me and driving long distances anymore. I used to be able to drive forever with no problems, but lately it just makes me drowsy. Add to that the furiously falling snow, and it was like I was having seizures. And I got a migraine. So Rob ended up driving all the rest of the way home, which took us about five hours.

Part of that time was waiting at a gas station in Williamsburg for a jumpstart, when Vanna's battery died. We really need to get a new one. A very nice man, on his way home from church, said he'd go get his other car with the cables in it and give us a boost. He returned, just like he said he would, and soon we were on our way. Phew. That could have been a disaster; everyone was so cold!

And Jack did sleep in the car, for a very long time, by the way.

Rob stopped at McD's for dinner for them (not me, wah), and finally we were home, a good 16 hours after leaving. The kids were so relieved, but not nearly as much as the dog was!

I settled in to watch "Celebrity Apprentice." Are you watching this? I can't stop staring at Joan Rivers. It just seems like her face must hurt, you know? I wasn't at all surprised by the outcome, were you?

All right, off to bed. I'm wiped.

Fin.

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