Thursday, January 26, 2012

In which I am currently...

...loving... the long days at home of winter, where children have time to make best efforts on hard things, instead of rushing through so we can head out the door to the next thing. A couple boys in basketball give me just enough "get out of the house" for a good balance, with still time to catch up on reading and conversations with The Husband.
...reading...a randomly chosen biography at the library, which I grabbed while searching the stacks for the book I had put on hold but the librarians had not had time yet to pull for me. Is that the sign of obsession?
...waiting for... a Big Snow. I do not live in the Midwest for rainy winters, thankyouverymuch. We must go sledding, make snow angels, completely freeze more insects, then start pining for spring.  
...excited family coming here this weekend for basketball and visits! Winter time is quality time for farm families.
...missing... our nephew Evan, who is now Nine Months Old (Oh, how sweet the years when I marked time in months!), and doing all sorts of wonderful new things every day. Yay for Oovoo! Boo for hundreds of miles apart.
...trying... to learn a new piano piece instead of replaying my old favorites again, and again, and again.
...working at... breaking the Dt. Mt. Dew addiction. There. I said it. On the Internet. Have not had one in more than 2 weeks, but am more than slightly worried about the amount of calories I am consuming in hot chocolate compensation. 
...enjoying... Spotify. A song pops in my head. I type it in search. It plays. The kids and I discuss some history and the music from that time. We search. It plays. Making new playlists is *my* Pinterest.
...snacking on... *nothing. (*See: working at: not eating after supper)
...using... benadryl to try to rid Jesse of mysteriously appearing rash on his stomach, elbows, underarms. Comes and goes. Benadryl not working too well. Suggestions welcome.
...wearing... "pajamas" - old shirt of Eric's and comfy gray pants. Not a lace kind of gal.
... planning...yes. Always.
...singing... "All Creatures of our God and King", off "Downtown Church" - Patty Griffin.
...needing... seriously fitting/arched walking/workout shoes. And 16 things fixed in the house. And 2 sets of braces for kids. But really? Nothing.
...learning... the very, very fine line between demanding excellence and inducing exasperation.
...listening squeaky dryer, my sleeping husband. Thankful for both.
...wishing... that is wasn't only hindsight that is 20/20. I could really use some corrective lenses for foresight, Lord.  
...praying for...obedience. That I would listen, and obey, and NOT try to control results. Praying for opened eyes and changed hearts.
...dreaming of... a place that would a safe place for broken, hurting people; that would be a place where light and hope were found; an adventure in reaching beyond comfortable and safe.

(...stealing from...fuzzy hair)

Monday, January 23, 2012

It's the little (big) things

This boring old dreary-rainy Monday morning, I grabbed my son's hand to warm up my hands (I regularly use them for supplemental heat), and I noticed it felt a little different.

So, we took a moment to do something that is not-so-unusual around here: we measured hands.

He did a double-take. I froze. It has happened. I have a child whose hand is as big as mine.

I do not have small hands.

His basketball coach is very happy with his hands; his piano teacher is so excited she stumbles over her words. His mother?


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A warm January birthday

"We NEVER have a day where we can go outside and play in the sunshine with no coats on our birthday!"

The 9 year old menu:
Breakfast: They chose to pick out a "anything we want" box of cereal - each. Reese's Puff and Cookie Crisps were the start to the day.
Lunch: Sandwich "buffet", as they like to call it, with their chosen chips.
Supper: Steak and chicken fajitas/tacos, with black beans and onions and peppers and lettuce/sour cream/tomatoes/sauces, chips and salsa, yummy sweet corn from summer
Chocolate cake, with mint and strawberry ice creams

Words that describe Jesse right now: strong, compassionate, thoughtful, so observant, guileless, funny
Words that describe Sara right now: determined, insightful, organized, responsible, loving, independent, certain

Sunday, January 8, 2012

In which the kids discuss politics

Eric took the kids out for cheap breakfast sandwiches yesterday morning, with the guideline that if they didn't want a sandwich they had to keep their order under $2.

He took them inside to order - to avoid the never-ends-well drive-thru panic ordering - and found that Levi had brought some extra money of his own to buy a second sandwich, which Eric let him do.

On the way home, the kids remembered that they hadn't ordered anything for me (I had told E ahead of time that I didn't want anything). Before Eric could explain, Delaney said to Levi: "Well, you can just give Mom your extra sandwich since you have two."

Levi's reply: "You're just like Obama - you want to take from the rich and give to the poor!"

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

If I Made a List: Best Movies from 2011

Let's be upfront here: I am no movie aficionado nor critic. I enjoy them, so this is all based on 1) their redeeming value; 2) level of enjoyment they brought. These are movies I watched in 2011, not necessarily that came out last year.

In no particular order:

1) Temple Grandin. I love based-on-true-story movies, and Claire Danes did an amazing job portraying Grandin in this. Amazing. I actually interviewed Grandin for an article once, back in the years when I had an income, so that plus the whole subject matter was a bonus.

2) The Secrets of Jonathan Sperry. We tend to be skeptical of low-budget "Christian" films, so I had my doubts, but this movie totally won me over. Well done, well acted - especially by the kids. Great movie.

3) Get Low. This was one of those movies that stays with you for days afterward. The kind you absorb, and made me want to actually look at the special features on the DVD. The acting is superb, with Robert Duvall. It is not an action movie. It's slow and simmering and makes you think about your choices in life.

4) The Help. Could be my favorite of the year. Does a great job of capturing the time period and the attitudes and the seemingly impossible obstacles to moving out of "the way things are".

5) Rango. Usually, you can hear me groan when Eric says he's gotten an animated movie for movie night. Really good ones are few and far between. This one is h-i-l-a-r-i-o-u-s. Loved it. Ranks close to Hoodwinked, which is our all-time favorite animated.

6) The Conspirator. Did I mention yet that I also favor based-on-true-story period pieces? This Civil War drama has great acting and lots of good detail. This one will be great for the kids to watch in a few years (heavy subjects and some gore).

There were some other good ones (Secretariat, 127 Hours) but these are really just the ones I can say I'm glad we took time to watch.

Your favorites from the year??

Monday, January 2, 2012

So I Can Remember

"The worst way out of apathy is by dodging problems, avoiding the clashing of personalities, and getting around persecution. May the Spirit prepare us in this new year for the daily grind, and may He fire us with unusual strength for the special task of confronting our national and personal idols."

- Dave Black