Tuesday, December 28, 2010
- Lacy patterns of frost on your car windows, which you have time to appreciate as you scrape them off every morning.
- Early sunsets mean early bedtimes.
- Hot drinks like hot chocolate, hot cider, and hot tang. (Did I just admit that out loud?)
- Comfy jeans and sweatshirts.
- The annual New Year's Eve countdown (to 8:00) and accompanying smashing of the gingerbread house. (I call dibs on the hard gummi bears.)
- New Years Resolution spreadsheets, calendars, and themes. (I'm considering "Fake it til you make it" or "Spare Me the Drama" for 2011.)
- Winter scented soaps and lotions--peppermint vanilla or grapefruit, depending on if it's night or morning.
- Pink cheeks.
- Hot stew.
- Red cardinals on bare branches.
- Coming in out of the cold.
- winter sunrises
- Finding things to look forward to.
- Life going slower.
- Making plans.
- Winter movies (Little Women, While You Were Sleeping, Sleepless in Seattle, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire...)
- Messing up when you write the date of the new year.
- How clean your house can look with all the Christmas decorations put away.
- Getting back into routines and schedules.
- Celebrating greatness in mediocre ways. (When's the last time you went all out for President's Day???)
- At least having Netflix to look forward to in the mail.
- Rearranging rooms and furniture to placate wanderlust.
- Prisms hanging in windows that cast winter rainbows on the walls.
- Super hot showers.
- Waking up early and getting to doze in your warm, comfortable bed with your sweetheart.
Monday, December 27, 2010
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Sunday, September 19, 2010
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Thursday, September 2, 2010
I knew the man at once--Edgar Degas. Famous for his ballerinas. I approached his self portrait slowly until I was only inches from it.
"Hello, Mr. Degas," I muttered like a crazy person, "it's nice to meet you."
Then I just stood there, waiting for this painting to teach me something.
His eyes hold a hint of uncertainty, like he isn't quite sure what to make of what he's seeing. And it has the eerie effect of making me feel like he's looking back me. I can't help but wonder what he would think of what he saw, if it were my face looking back at him. Like a window. Because, quite honestly, sometimes I'm not sure myself. If it were me he were about to paint, and not himself, what would I see reflected on the canvas? Where would he even begin?
His eyes seem to say "I don't know what to think of you."
"Tell me about it." I mutter back.
Later on, in the museum shop, I found the perfect mug to summarize my meeting with Mr. Degas, my perusal of the largest library in the world, and my own tears upon seeing the Washington Monument reflected in the Potomac River...
I am still learning. -Michelangelo
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
I made a table centerpiece by stacking some books in the center and then scattering crayons the length of the table runner. This year's hats were cone party-hats that I'd written "Listen, Listen!" on. They always love the hats.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Happy Midsummer, to you and yours.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Sunday, June 6, 2010
I had never been to North Carolina before I moved here, either. And it surprised me, too. What did I expect? Well. Honestly? Nascar, smokers, rednecks, trailer parks, fried food, snakes, and humidity. I think that pretty much sums it up.
But now I'm in my sixth year here, and I am happy to say that I continue to be delightfully surprised.
By the darting, disappearing tails of bunnies across my lawn.
By flashes of red and the call of songbirds.
By the soft curve and rise and fall of fields of corn, wheat, okra, soy, and cotton.
By the unending parade of blossoms that begins in March and continues through the summer: Bradford pear, dogwood, azalea, rhododendron, japonica, and crepe myrtle.
By the spiciness that accompanies the return of humidity.
By summer fogs, when I still think that fog should be something that happens in the winter.
By the first cool humidity-free breeze in the fall.
There's something magical about a place that is so unexpected.
You never know what you'll find next.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
A'right, this isn't going to interest some of you, but I'm hoping that some of you might come play along and join us for our attempt at summer learning. School isn't even OUT yet, but we just couldn't wait to start our summer unit studies. I decided that we were going to do a program called Five in a Row, which is a simple and easy to follow curriculum--with tons of room for fitting it into your family, schedule, and life. The basic idea is that they give you one book to study each week. You read it for 5 days in a row, and include activities that build on the story and all the subjects found within the story. We are having a BLAST--so I decided to share what we're doing. Come play along.
Our first unit features The Story of Ping by Marjorie Flack.
Social Studies and Georgraphy Unit: A-Z China was fantastic because it threw in a lot of cultural information, along with some Chinese vocabulary. I wondered if my kids were old enough to get into The Emperor's Silent Army, but Thing 1 really took to it, and my husband and I were fascinated by it. We also made our own maps of China, with the basic map coming from Apples4theteacher--click here.
Math Unit: Count Your Way Through China wasn't as valuable for the text as it was for teaching us to count from 1-10 in Chinese:
1 - Yee
2 - Uhr
3 - Sahn
4 - Suh
5 - Woo
6 - Lyo
7 - Chee
9 - Jo
10 - Shur
Yes, I typed that from memory. I am so proud of myself. So, we learned to count in Chinese for math, but we also spent some time adding and subtracting ducks. In the book it says that Ping has a huge family of aunts, uncles, and cousins--it was fun to take away the aunts and see how many were left. To do this, we used little counting ducks we have, but you could use anything to represent the ducks--even beans. It was great fun.
Science: Floating, diving, swimming, currents. Domestic ducks and wild ducks. YouTube videos of cormorants fishing for their masters. Why is the Yangtze River yellow? There are a LOT of science possiblities in Ping!
Language Arts and Art: For our art unit, we studied the pictures--the reflections in the water, and the way that the artist used ink and then filled it in with colored pencils. I pointed out that he only used the primary colors, and then layered them to create secondary colors. Then we grabbed some paper and played around with ink/colored pencil drawings, using only red-yellow-and blue. They turned out surprisingly well for 5 and 3 year olds. We also printed out basic maps of China and filled in broad areas--mountains, deserts, green tropical areas, cold areas, the major cities and rivers, and--of course--the Great Wall.
Kid's Movies to Go With: Ni-Hao Ki Lan series and Disney's Mulan.
Finally, for our field trip, we went to a local Chinese restaurant and had dinner. The kids greeted the owner with a friendly Ni-hao! And asked her how to say "thank you" -- "xie xie" (it sounds like "shia shia").
Next up--Lentil by Robert McCloskey (of Blueberries for Sal and Make Way for Ducklings fame.) It promises to be wonderful--grab it at your library and read along! :)
List of authors: The Story About Ping by Marjorie Flack, A-Z China by Junstine and Ron Fontes, The Seven Chinese Brothers by Margaret Mahy, Count Your Way Through China by Jim Haskins, The Emperor's Silent Army by Jane O'Connor, We Come From China by Julia Waterlow.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Remember the picture of me digging my bare toes into the dirt?
I doubt I could find a spot to stand now.
And I love it.
But I have this one tomato plant...
HEY! I saw your eyes glaze over. *snaps fingers* This is a good story.
Where was I?
Oh. My tomato plant.
Well this tomato plant has decided that it wants to recreate Jack and the Beanstalk in my front garden. The thing is very nearly as tall as me. An overachiever. I mean--it's not even supposed to grow the big tomatoes. Just little cherry ones that I will pop into my mouth when I walk by and, on occasion, slip to my kids because they LOOK like fruit and then watch as they spit them out and glare at me. It never gets old.
But yesterday I came home and it had toppled over--cage and all. Flop. Right on top of the blueberry bush.
"Ger'off!" I pushed at it with all my might. It eyed me for a second before stubbornly flopping back over. I called my husband to come out and help me. We both tugged it upright again. Only now it looked like it was pouting.
Sheesh. Who knew a tomato plant could act like a teenager?
Then there are the squash. They somehow took a wrong turn and think they're in the Amazon. Small children could congregate in their shade and start a new colony.
I don't even like squash that much, and it looks like they're going for the gold. The harvest has the potential to reach "grundle" in size.
If you find an anonymous paper bag of squash on your front seat--it wasn't me.
If you find a GIGANTIC tomato plant plopped on your front porch smoking weed (HAHAHA!), well, that, I'll have to admit--might've been me.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Heaven only knows why.
Any by "take control" I mean that I announced to my children "Today is a no TV day!"
My brain in my head screamed, in chorus with them, "WHAT?!?!?!?!?!"
"Yup" I chirped, like someone possessed, "today we're going to play outside and use our imaginations and have FUN!"
The real me in my head clamored "BUT HOW AM I GOING TO TAKE A SHOWER?!" while Thing 2 started screaming for Blue's Clues.
"Maybe we'll even like it so much we'll turn it into No TV WEEK!" continued the Crazy Lady that somehow took charge today over the screams of her offspring.
Well. If I'm jumping off the cliff, might as well really go for it.
No giving in to the three year old when he pitches tantrums that would impress even Ghengis Khan. Which may be his new nickname, by the way.
Yup. Today, I'm going to be the kind of mom I always intended to be in the first place. Even if I now realize that the mom I always intended to be was probably a complete maniac.
Fake it 'til you make it, right girls?
Monday, May 17, 2010
She asked me why.
I told her "Because you drank a lot at dinner and I don't want you to wet your bed."
Minutes later, she asked me if she could have a glass of milk. I said no. She asked why.
I told her "Because you drank a lot at dinner, and I don't want you to wet your bed."
This morning, I found that she had gotten up in the night to go to the bathroom, taken off her pull up...
and peed all over the couch.
There are no words.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Last Saturday, I took my friend, Merriweather, who was visiting from Maine to go and check on my bees and see how they were settling into their new hive. Well. They were downright ornery (meaning, they kept flying at me and buzzing and generally acting like bouncers). And I couldn't find my queen. I was so flustered by my own inexperience that I just hurriedly put the hive back together and ran away.
All week, I've been thinking about my queen.
A hive must, absolutely must, have a queen. They can't survive without her. They depend on her to give the colony cohesiveness and direction. They count on her for more baby bees, to keep the hive strong and healthy. Just by her mere presence, she sets the tone for every bee in my hive. All 10,000 of them, and counting.
But without my queen? Well. Without a queen, the workers start just wandering around like teenagers at the mall, being promiscuous without any clue of the consequences. It doesn't take long at all for the colony to shrivel and fail without their queen.
So I've been anxious about her. Without her, I fail.
Today, my mentor (bless him) met up with me and we gave my colony a thorough going-over. I have been humbled, which is a good thing--I am more careful. I ask lots more questions. I ask for more help. And on the second to last frame--there she was. But even if I hadn't seen her, I knew she was there. The colony was in perfect order. You could easily tell, they have a queen.
Which has gotten me thinking about my own little home, and my own children. How often I set the tone. How little I realize it. How I can send out the "All is Well!" signal, or the "Every man for himself!" signal at any given moment. That's my job. To set the tone. To give my own little baby bees cohesiveness and direction.
I need to be a better queen.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
I'm sitting here at my computer, feeling discouraged.
And it's over the dumbest thing, really.
I'm putting together a wedding invitation suite for a bride in the midwest. It's a lovely invitation. The first set that I'm trying to print out, on my own, rather than sending it out to the printer I use. To try and save the bride money, that's why. But wedding invitations are a big deal. The paper needs to be heavy. The colors need to be rich. And you *must* have a dpi of 600 pixels. Not 300. 600. And I can't.get.the.darn.thing. to print the right size.
Isn't that shallow? To be feeling all weepy because you can't figure something out?
But I do.
And it stinks.
Because, before you know it, you find yourself wandering in Discourageland, which is not as fun as "Land"s and "World"s that I could name, including Gatorland or Reptileorama.
You start at the gate of "Aw, man, why can't I get this to print right?" and Fast Pass right on to the "I can't budget" rollercoaster of guilt, stopping for a quick snack at the "Ample is My Middle Name" food court. Before you can even get in line for the daily gameshow "Let's count all the ways you were a bad mom today!" you're already deep and mired in a place that looks like West Texas and smells like two day old sauerkraut.
So, in an attempt to saunter away from Discourageland, tra la, and not stray into the kitchen (boo hiss) I went over to NieNie and watched her video. If you haven't seen it yet, you should go over and check it out. It takes forever to load, but it's worth it.
And it'll get you out of Discourageland. At least for awhile
Thanks for listening. :)
Sunday, May 9, 2010
And I'm not just saying that. I'm basing my superior status on empirical evidence.
Let's examine the facts:
1. I have three children.
2. None of them have died.
Right there, I am way ahead of most mothers in history. I don't think 5% of mothers could claim those accomplishments a century ago, which I think had less to do with dysentery and cholera and more to do with poor mothering skills.
But there's more. Oh yes, there's more.
3. I love to enrich my children's minds with copious amounts of PBS Kids "Curious George" and, thanks to Netflix "watch instantly", a healthy dose of WOW WOW WUBBZY: WUBBZY'S BIG MOVIE. I think that letting them watch androgynous creatures that speak with various accents and have no relationship to reality helps prepare them for the real world, with a special emphasis on doing anything you want and getting away with it.
4. The worst swear word my kids have come up with, so far, is "poop." So that's good.
So there you have it. I am a fantastic mother.
Hope you are feeling as confident and assured of your place in the future Hallmark Hall of Fame "Special Mothers" made-for-tv movie as I am today.
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
I got her out and started chanting the "Clean up, clean up, everybody do your share" song.
You know that song right?
She crouched down next to me, pointed at the eggs, and sang the REAL version of that song. It goes like this:
"Mom-my, Mom-my, Mommy Mommy Mommy Mommeeeeee..."
Yep. That's about right.
Saturday, May 1, 2010
She is a night owl.
Almost without fail, she would be there, eating red pudding and watching something--the Star Trek films are what I remember most.
If I got up at just the right time, she would share a bowl of red pudding with me.
That was the best thing ever.
I understand why she was a night owl. The peace while children sleep. Cleaning up a house or a room and having it stay clean--even for just a little while.
If you came to my house and woke up late, you'd find watching movies. Probably Harry Potter. Maybe Sense and Sensibility. And eating red pudding.
I would share a bowl with you.
My daughter has discovered this habit of mine, that I got from my own mother. She loves to join me for "Girl's Nights."
No one can tell me that those moments of parenthood aren't the best, most magical things ever.
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Saturday, April 24, 2010
Friday, April 23, 2010
Monday, April 19, 2010
Support local? Spend money I probably shouldn't? I'm in! I chose my three local stores to support: Aladdin's Eatery, Clara's Choice for Herbs, and The Homeschool Room.
Aladdin's Eatery was an easy choice. My favorite restaurant on the planet, serving gluten-free Lebanese food--with to-die-for American desserts. Even if it was just stopping in for some fresh mint tea once a week, I knew that I could find a reason to visit and support my favorite haunt. That was, until I so purposefully drove up and found a note on the door that "Due to Unexpected Circumstances" they had to close.
Next on my list: Clara's Choice for Herbs. I love this little store because whether I stop to pick up flax seed oil for my salads or just some awesome grapefruit essential oil to make my house smell good, I'm treated to some conversation from the (ancient) sisters who own the store, and a scripture to go with my life. (They have an uncanny sense when it comes to that.) So imagine my growing dismay when I drove up recently and there was a huge "STORE CLOSING" sign on the front window.
REALLY??? What did I DO?!?!
Apparently, I have enacted a curse equal to that suffered by the Red Sox for many decades.
Which is why I apologize, in advance, to The Homeschool Room. You're probably doomed, and it's all my fault.
In the meantime, go support 3 local stores everyone--let's keep our amazing local economies growing.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
- A little trampoline, preferably with a rail to hold on to.
- A Radio Flyer wagon.
- A porch swing for our backyard.
- A week wacker.
He brought home every single item. Plus a mini lawn mower for the kids. Unbelievable.
I'm not as good at Garage Sale Sifting. But I have a bit of the adventurer in me, not to mention a specific dining room set that I'm wanting, so this morning at 7:36, I set out on my periwinkle bike to see what I could see.
Which is when I discovered that there is a whole subculture that I don't know if I was aware of going on in our communities. My first clue was when I stopped briefly to say hello to my next door neighbor. One of the choice items she had for sale was a black lacquer headboard. Fan shaped. With gold accents. She was firm on the price: $200.
I wondered if she was asking that because it played a part on the set of "The Wedding Singer", but I decided not to ask.
I peddled carefully onward.
The street, you must understand, was jam packed. Cars were parked right in the middle of the road as their drivers threw open their doors to claim the treasures awaiting them on other stranger's front lawns. I heard more than a few curses muttered at "The Dealers" who showed up an hour before the official start time and had already filled their trailers with The Really Good Stuff. They had their loot loaded and were weaving their way smugly through traffic just when everyone else was arriving.
But, for the intrepid, there were still treasures to be found.
I was halfway around the neighborhood when I saw it. I mean IT. MY DINING SET.
The exact one.
The one I've been pining over, planning over, dreaming of.
The World Market Lugano Dining Table with Bench and 6 Chairs.
How did The Dealers miss THIS?!!?!? The owner must've put it out late! I kid you not when I say that I ditched my bike in the middle of the sidewalk, even at the risk of someone selling it for a tidy profit, and grandma-power-walked (because running is against my religion) up to the table. No "SOLD" sign. Only a piece of paper that said "Table, bench, and 6 chairs. $200."
I turned to the owner to tell him that he'd just made my entire LIFE... just as the man closer to him said "I'll take that table."
And I died. Right on the spot. The End.
No, but really. REALLY????? I can't even tell you how tempted I was to say "I'll give you double." But I'm unsure of Garage Sale etiquette, and I wasn't sure if that was even acceptable at garage sales.... is it?
So I forlornly went back to my periwinkle bike and peddled mournfully away. *sniff*
Oh well. At least there is one compensation: that black lacquer headboard is still in my neighbor's front yard, in case I change my mind.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
I'm being serious. My fashion sense is so out of whack that I'm holding on to my denim jumpers and overalls, just waiting for them to come back "in." Aaaaany minute now...
(Eeeek! Butterflies! C-ute!)
I blame this on the fact that I was fat in high school. Don't get me wrong--there are advantages to being fat in high school. Mostly the fact that if I were ever to go to a high school reunion (snort) people would be able to say "You haven't changed a bit!" even after 3 kids. Not many people can pull that off. But seriously, what do you expect when you go shopping for your Harvest Ball date in the PRETTY PLUS women's section at JC Penney? Your sense of what's "in" tends to get a little skewed.
Thankfully, I have my daughters to help me, and both of them have better fashion sense then I do. At 5 years and 18 months old, respectively.
I'm not the least bit kidding.
When I need to buy a pair of shoes, I go to Marshalls with Thing 1. Plunking myself down in the middle of the shoe department, I tell her to get me a size 9 and set her free. She brings me back boxes and boxes of shoes, which I try on. Then she tells me which ones to get. Then people proceed to tell me how cute my shoes are. If I stray from this procedure and try to choose my own shoes then I get comments that are more along the lines of "Oh wow! I haven't seen shoes like that since..."
What? Chunky shoes with square toes aren't in anymore???
And just this Sunday the Munchkin came toddling up to me carrying a dress and the matching pantaloons. "How cute!" I thought, and put them on her. Then I reached for the closest pair of her shoes to put them on her. She cocked one eyebrow at me and toddled back into her room, bringing back a shoe that actually matched her outfit. "Oh." I said, placing the shoe on her foot, and feeling a little foolish.
I went to find the other one and when I returned, she had wandered into the bathroom, climbed up on the toilet, and retrieved a matching butterfly hair clip and brush.
"Wow! I didn't even know we still had those!" I muttered.
I swear I saw her roll her eyes.
It's going to be a long twenty years at my house.
Maybe by then, my overalls will be back in style...
Saturday, April 10, 2010
Sometimes, the world right outside your front door is just so beautiful that you can't keep away from it. A friend of mine said that, and for me, that explains my life for the past few weeks. First thing in the morning, I am lured outside to watch the apricot sunrises and check on my baby plants. The feel of grass that is still soft (which will change rapidly here in ye old South) on my feet. Dirt under my fingernails and endless nursery receipts on the floor of my car. I am thumbing through nursery catalogs and coaxing little plants to grow.
Friday, I went to a local hardware store with my Dad and my kids. This hardware store was built in 1901. The floors are made of wood, and they creak. The man who runs it knows everything about gardening in North Carolina, and is an absolute treasure for a poor, helpless transplant like me. My kids love to look at the chickies that they have in the springtime, as well as the big roosters and hens in a pen in the back. Of course, I couldn't resist running my fingers over the plants they have for sale. Nor could I resist scooping up a couple of pickling cucumber vines or some sweet baby watermelons.
It just couldn't be helped. It's like visiting an orphanage, you can't just leave them there.
I hope that wherever you are, you're being drawn out too--into the wide world and the sunshine. It has been such a long winter, even here.
It's time to stretch and breathe deeply and revive.
But I'll be back.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
So we've dyed Easter eggs and hunted for them the Saturday before Easter. We've tried to emphasize the importance of Easter Sunday.
But it's always been small and understated, and it somehow always felt... flat.
This year I was determined to really celebrate Easter. I "invested" in some more Easter decorations. (I have to say "invested" to justify buying them at all.) The Spouse and I started a countdown to Easter two weeks ago Sunday where, each night, our children open a numbered Easter Egg that contains a jelly bean for each child and a scripture about Jesus' life and ministry. We hung colorful plastic eggs on our front tree and talked about the symbolism of things in the spring that can remind us about Jesus.
In short, we did everything we harped and pounded on the subject until it was exhausted.
Sunday was Palm Sunday, and began the nightly opening of eggs that also contained a symbol of Holy Week and the countdown of this sacred time of year. We have talked about the life of Jesus a lot for two weeks now. I have drilled this into my kid's heads. This is going to be a week where they really get it. My hopes are high.
We sat down to read our scripture. My beloved Little Ones are gathered around me.
Filled with anticipation, I asked my five year old daughter what holiday is coming up.
"Easter!" she exclaimed.
"That's right!" I encouraged proudly, "and what is Easter about???"
A heartbeat of a pause. The Humpty Dumpty of my hope teeters.
"THE EASTER BUNNY!!!!!!" she screeched, and both she and Thing 2 started writhing on the floor in delight, amongst the shattered remains of all my plans.
But like a doomed sea captain in a fog, I floundered onward.
"Um, no. Not the Easter bunny. Well. Kind of. But what is Easter REALLY about?" I pressed.
"CANDYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!" they both exclaimed.
"What, besides candy, is Easter about?" I insisted.
"A person?" I asked hopefully.
Oh well. Maybe next year. At least there will always be Mini Eggs.
Friday, March 26, 2010
You know, Appalachia is a special place. And it isn't just the charming street names like "Possum Trot" or "Bodwich Bottom" that give it such allure. No, while those are lovely bonuses unto themselves, it is really the view that captures your heart.
Because, really, it's worth the drive just to observe A Century of Cars, all in people's front yards. I was also, of course, SO glad to see that there are places in our great nation where young men can go to their local McDonalds in overalls. I can imagine that my joy is overshadowed, somewhat, by the people who are welcomed with open arms at BBQ establishments sporting signs that say "SMOKERS WELCOME."
You heard 'em right. They can make whatever laws they want in Raleigh, but up here?? You are WELCOME.
(This flies in the face of the sign I saw on a restaurant in South Carolina recently that was going smoke-free due to "an overwhelming healthy consciousness." I have no idea what that means. "Smokers welcome" at least makes sense.)
We stayed at a tiny little mountain inn that was built only 20 years ago, but made to resemble a MUCH older building. Complete with wood burning stoves, very thin walls, and snoring Scottish tourists. We contributed to the ambiance, as we love to do, by bringing in small children that run up and down the halls, slam doors, and a one year old that wails hourly, on cue, throughout the night.
I am assured that old people don't sleep well at night anyway, so I wasn't really worried about disturbing them.
The capstone of our trip had to be the visit to the North Carolina Arboretum, with a special exhibit called "The Scoop on Poop." You might think that just because nothing is blooming, the greenhouses are closed, and everything looks completely depressing and lifeless, it might be better to wait to visit the Aboretum. But then you would miss your chance to learn about feces, take hilariously posed pictures by placing your face in a cutout of someone reading a book in an outhouse, and give in to the temptation to scratch and sniff the "SNIFF HERE" stickers on the exhibits. We even got to race dung beetles pushing balls of "dung."
My trip was complete.
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Monday, March 15, 2010
And then I fainted.
(I am a fainter. I'd forgotten that. But at least I didn't pee my pants this time, which I've done before when I fainted. When I was 21. That wasn't embarrasing at all. *snort*)
But the funniest part is that when I related this to my mom/husband/nurse/friend/sister they were less concerned about the fact that I have a puncture wound in my hand than the fact that I was cleaning my vaccum with a knife. "WHY were you using a knife???"
Well, what else are you supposed to use to remove nearly SEVEN YEARS of collected threads from you vaccum? Really--I'd like to know.
But at least I got a tetanus shot. That's a bonus. Bring on your sharp objects: I'm covered.
- I finally figured out what was causing this insane breakout of teenage nightmare proportions: my anti-wrinkle lotion. Figures.
- I have deep cleaned my house so thoroughly that there's no hope of my regular house ever being clean again. But the insides of all my closets, drawers, and cupboards look awesome. Maybe I'll go live inside one of them.
- As I dragged myself out of bed this morning at 5:30 (even though the clock said 6:30) to drag my 5 year old out of HER bed, in the dark, I thought "Move the clocks forward an hour? Really? WHO'S DUMB IDEA WAS THIS?" The fact that all of us, en masse, will follow along like sheep proves that--together--there is nothing that we can't accomplish. Because we'll do whatever we're told.
- My youngest is 18 months old and just started walking. But I still woke up this morning wearing a maternity shirt and maternity sweats. Boy are they ever comfy!!
- On Saturday, I got to go get "into" some beehives. And guess what? I loved it just as much as I thought I would. It was amazing. These beautiful, graceful creatures buzzing softly around me, covered in pollen, and checking me out just as much as I was checking them out. I held a frame with thousands of bees on it in my two hands and felt not the slightest twinge of fear. Just amazement. Now if I could just get a hedgehog my life would be complete. Hmmm....
Friday, March 12, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
The Terrible Toddlers have found us, right on cue.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
North Carolina Naturists!
Celebrating more than 20 years of family-oriented, clothing-optional recreational activities. Call for more info.
My mind began to race--what, pray tell, is a naturist? Well. "At The Naturist Society, we have members who are deeply committed to naturism, and view it as a defining idea of their lives. And we have members who don't give the philosophical side of naturism much thought. They just know that not wearing clothes often feels better and makes more sense than wearing them." (From "The Naturist Society", emphasis added.)
Glory be! There is a TERM for what my children are! Naturists!! (Not to be confused with naturalists, people. Very different.) Not only do my children have a genus and species, but they even have an official club for them! The ultimate opportunity to rub shoulders, so to speak, with their own kind.
I wonder if it's frowned upon for parents to drop their naturist progeny off for the "recreational activity" and head for the nearest clothing mandatory restaurant... hm.
Although, if they offer a special lecture series on "Chafing: Don't Let it Rub You the Wrong Way" then I could consider recreating along with them. Especially if they offer gluten free spelt or oat groats for refreshments...
Monday, March 1, 2010
Friday, February 26, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Do you wake up sometimes and just know that it's going to be a sweatshirt and herbal tea kind of day? I do. Sometimes, I know it's going to be a "cute jeans and get stuff done" kind of day. Other days, it's a "gloves and get outside" kind of day.
But today, is a comfortable and joy day. My friend Ruth would've called it a "Mental health" day.
So I'm planning to stay inside, wearing my husband's blue "Purdue" sweatshirt. Spa socks. A strong mug of lemon tea with honey, of course.
And while I'm talking about joy, I just love the graphic that I found for my early spring header. Don't you love it? It makes me smile every time I see it. I can't claim to be into everything that's vintage, but I do have a soft spot for great depression and World War II era graphics. But I still haven't found the perfect background to go with my header. If any of you come across anything that's *perfect*, let me know, will you?
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
First up, pairs figure skating.
I think we can all agree that the Chinese couple who has been married 18 years and came out of retirement to compete, deserved to win the gold medal. Even if she did almost fall off in the free skate. Whatever. But what *really* clinched their gold wasn't her gigantic, open-mouth smile or his ever present jazz hands. No. It was when the German couple chose their costumes:
Really? Or in German, wirklich??? Send in the clowns?! You chose THAT as your Olympic theme? Maybe something got lost in translation. It could be cultural differences. But I have a hard time believing that a CLOWN costume says "Take me seriously" in any language.
But, then I took a good long look at the Norwegian men's curling team, and decided that I might be wrong:
Masterfully done, guys. Masterfully done. The circus that loaned you those pants was high-fiving all over the place as you used their elephant cleaning brooms to sweep that ice. Sweep it!
Now. On to women's moguls, or--another way to put it--showing the world how.it's.done.
That is American Hannah Kearney, known in the Olympic village as the "Prude" who didn't do a swimsuit photo shoot in preparation for her Olympic experience. And that is American Hannah Kearney just hanging out upside down. For a long time. While her Canadian competition started bawling at the bottom of the run. I know nothing about skiing, and the only time I've attempted skiing I ended up in a pretzel on the bunny hill, but even *I* could see that her run was flawless. Here's to you, Prudie.
But even watching that breathlessly beautiful run isn't as entertaining, The Spouse pointed out to me, as watching the cross country skiers and biathalon...um....ers... cross the finish line. Why? Because it's like a big game of ring around the rosie:
Sing it with me "ASHES, ASHES, WE ALL FALL DOWN!!!" I love it! I love a sport where everyone collapses in despair/joy/exhaustion at the end. Awesome! So unlike those marathon runners who cross the finish line after more than 26 miles.... and just keep running. Like they can't stop. Take a page from your cross-country friends and collapse in a heap instead. It feels SO much better.
Unless you're Lindsey Jacobellis. And you're sitting on your backside halfway through the course as your competition crosses the finish line and you're thinking "WHAT THE HECK JUST HAPPENED?!"
Well, Linds (can I call you Linds?) I'll tell you what happened. That blue gate? Which actually just looks like a pole? You ran into it. So, Lesson 1 from Torino: no showing off before the finish line. Lesson 2 from Vancouver: don't run into the pole. I mean gate. Maybe next time.
But for our final sport, I'm not sure there should be a next time:
I'm sorry. I try to be supportive and understanding. Everyone has their thing. Some people think curling is cool in clown pants. Some people, I'm sure, watch the couples ice dancing. Even if it's just to laugh. But WHO in their RIGHT MIND trains for a sport called "Skeleton." If I understand it correctly, you get on the sled. Face first. And you go down the same track that those bobsledders and crazy lugers use. At 70 miles per hour. FACE FIRST.
Please. Someone explain to me how this is a good idea. Or even legal. Because it boggles my unathletic mind. Ice + speed + face + downhill does NOT, in my also mathematically challenged mind, = FUN.
Stay tuned. You never know what kind of hilarity is left in the second week of competition.