Yesterday I did some necessary errands, enjoyed the party, marveled at #2 son’s ability to fly through the air 10 during his gymnastics class, cleaned the kitchen, and then settled in to my knitting.

I show you one of my tidy cupboards here.

I only show you one because #2 son was very scornful about it. “It looks exactly the same,” he said witheringly.

So much for visible results.

To me, the cupboards seem much improved, altogether more logical and user-friendly.

This one has a warped board for its top shelf. Someday I guess we will go get a new shelf, but it has been this way since we moved in and nothing has ever happened because of it, so there is no hurry.

10 Here is a mess. This mess appeared over the course of the evening. The table started the day with a nice autumnal centerpiece on it. As the day progressed, it acquired a package of lightbulbs because we were going to change the porch light, some magazines people were reading, knitting, the knitting book so I could check the pattern, somebody’s hairbrush for reasons unknown, remote controls when we watched a movie, the phone when it rang and I answered it, bringing it with me back to the couch, and a matchbox which I suppose must have been for the candle. #1 son came home from his date and added a striped tie.

It’s like a midden at an archaeological dig.

#1 daughter came in, having spent the day at work where, since one worker has been suspended for lateness and another went to Dallas for the weekend, she spent a busy day with the manager, who had stomach flu and kept having to excuse herself.

Following that adventure, she went out to dinner with an old acquaintance. They went to the acquaintance’s home after dinner, and were entertained by fights and screaming. Someone walked #1 daughter to her car and she came home to tell us all about it.

“I’m not laughing at you,” said #2 son, laughing, “but it’s funny that you had all that to deal with, and all we had was pudding that didn’t set up.”

This is true. #2 son wanted to try out a new recipe involving convenience foods, and I bought them for him. One of the steps was the making of instant pudding, a task involving the mixing of a powder with milk. I would have said that instant pudding was a foolproof product, but apparently not. It didn’t set up. Not at all. It is still a liquid sitting in our refrigerator. I don’t know what we’ll do with the half-finished recipe also sitting in the refrigerator.

I worked on Ivy. You can see it in the picture above, under the tie. In the last thrilling installment about this sweater, I had completed the back and the right front and attempted to sew the shoulders together, only to find that they didn’t match. Uncertain whether the fault was in the front or the back, I determined to make the left front and see. This I did, and the two front pieces match each other. Accordingly, I frogged the back shoulder shapings and started them again, intending to make them match the fronts, regardless of what the pattern says. I’ll let you know how that turns out.

Today is church and a big hymn sing. I am looking forward to this. One of the other choristers called me to ask what we ought to wear. We, being singers, will be robed, but there is dinner afterwards, plus the question of what ought to be showing beneath the hems of our robes.

The sing involves all five of the Methodist churches in the town. Ours is an integrated church, but we know that there is in the group at least one predominantly black church. “Predominantly black” and “predominantly white” are the polite terms in this part of the country for groups which show de facto segregation. I suppose ours is actually predominantly white, though I think if we calculated we would find that we had about the same proportions of African American, Asian, and Hispanic members as the town’s proportions of residence.

The reason this matters is that it is customary for predominantly black churches to dress up a bit more than predominantly white ones, and we thought it might be respectful to follow the customs of the fancier group. “When I go to my mother-in-law’s church,” the other chorister said, mentioning a predominantly black church, “I often feel underdressed, even if I’m dressed up.”

Miss Manners says that when there is an etiquette conflict, the higher level of etiquette is the one that trumps. The caller thought that perhaps we should follow the custom of the hosting church, on the “when in Rome…” principle, but we don’t know the custom of the hosting church, or even its ethnic makeup, supposing that allowed us to guess.

So I think I’ll dress up, to be on the safe side. Flat shoes, though. You can’t sing properly if your feet hurt.