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2 kids. Memories of Wolf and Boo. Many dear friends. Three siblings. Two parents. Samarra the crazy dog. The Player and Pi the Cat. I love you all!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

In My Back Yard

Lilacs are trying to blossom

White hearts are trying to bleed

A girl is studying an anthill on a Friday afternoon.

Daffodils are going bananas

The rhubarb is growing toward pie-ness

Wait, what's this?
An unwanted guest has invited his friends and relatives to crash the party.  They won't leave willingly I'm sure and will have to be forcibly removed.  Sigh.


Friday, April 29, 2011

I Got Hacked!

Yesterday morning while at work I received a mysterious email from...myself at home, when I was not home to be emailing myself at work.  I thought to myself, hmmm that's weird!  Then I started getting calls about weird emails my friends and family were getting from me.  One friend said 'That joke wasn't funny!"  What joke, I thought to myself?  Well, anyway, my sister Connie told me my email was hacked and I needed to get in touch with Comcast.

After working my way through their interminably long phone menu, pressing 1, 2, or 3 several times I finally got to press 0 to talk to a person.  That person then listened to my tale of woe and she said she had to transfer me.  I got transferred to another phone menu and after pressing the magic number 5 I got to talk to Sean.  Sean was wonderful.  He told me immediately "I can fix that!" and he did.  Then he reassured me that this has been happening a lot, and that all the hackers have been doing is messing with email.  (But I did change some other passwords on my system just in case.)  Sean, Sean, My Wonderful I-Can-Fix-That-Sean.  So if you ever need help, call Sean.   His number is 800-comcast-get-you-some-sean.  I think he should marry Tawanna from Target.  Maybe I will try to introduce them.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

After the Tornado

I've been writing a poem-a-day this month, well almost every day, thanks to Kathy's poetry prompts that she shared for Poetry Month.  On Monday I wrote a poem called After the Tornado.  When I got up this morning and saw the news about the devastation across the southeast, I decided to go back and re-read my poem.  Here it is.

After the Tornado

The wind is gentle today.
Like an apologetic lover he feels only regret over yesterday’s anger
He knows I didn’t deserve that unkindness but it can’t be undone

The wind is playful today.
He thinks it’s forgiven. Forgotten.
He’s na├»ve the way wind and rain must be.

The wind is warm and loving today.
He caresses me.
I want to trust him but something inside me holds me back.

The wind is rough today.
He tosses my lawn chairs around the yard.
When I look puzzled, he says, “Get over it. I’m going to do whatever I want here.”

I try to leave wind behind.
He takes half the day off, then begins to follow me.
He laughs when I threaten to call the authorities.

All night I wonder, when is he going to haunt me again?
I can’t sleep and my stomach cramps.
In the morning I call in sick, but wind is whistling as he works.

I hear that wind has moved down south for a couple of days.
He’s a serial killer.
I don’t know how to warn my sisters.

I drive east and see the wind turbines using him.
I picture myself tall and powerful like them.
I know that I am twisted and broken.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Just One Question

Yesterday I stepped outside in the late afternoon and heard chirping sounds, happy chirping sounds coming from inside my grill.  The starlings flew out the little holes on the side and back to the elm tree.  I realized I probably won't be grilling anytime soon.  I don't have the heart to tear up their nest.  

Does anyone know how long starlings take to hatch?  

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Oh Happy Day...

Here are my children wearing outfits that any University of Illinois alumni will admire.  Sisi is wearing blue pants and J-dude has on orange shorts, as well.  It's enough to make me break out into song!  Hail Alma Mater, ever so true so truuuueeee....

Here is what Sisi accomplished in the past month:  she raised $235 dollars to help people in Japan.  We sent an electronic check off yesterday!  I am so danged proud of her.  J-dude helped her but gave her the credit for the project, like a good administrative assistant should.

Here is what J-dude did today:  he got up and made breakfast for his sister.  He made fake smores for her, with small white powdered donuts between graham crackers.  He served it to her and made her some hot chocolate, too.

His teacher reported that he seems to be back to his more studious and respectful self at school.  The new dosage of his medication PLUS graham crackers = a happy kid, happy parents, happy teachers, happy sister and happy friends. 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Behavior Modification

It's no secret that my J-dude has been struggling with school, both grades and behavior issues.  Last week we had a follow-up with his doctor, who I adore, and she changed the dosage of one of his medications.  We are all (parents, teachers, sister, and J-dude) hoping this will make a difference for him.

This morning was such a good morning.  The kids were both calm and happy, there was no sibling rivalry and in fact they were helping each other get ready.  Jeremiah wanted to make breakfast for his sister.  While he and I were in the kitchen, he asked if he could have some graham crackers.  Yes, yes, I said.  Not a problem.  He ate some graham crackers.  Sierra ate some graham crackers.  Then at that moment when almost every morning all heck breaks lose (time to actually get stuff together to get out the door), the cooperation and kindness between them only intensified.

I think it was the graham crackers. 

I'm having one right now and I suddenly feel an overwhelming sense of happiness and wellbeing.  I think we should all buy stock in Nabisco, then we will get this information out on CNN.  Not only will everyone feel good, but some of us might make a few bucks. 

I checked the ingredients for a clue, but I think that it is probably the last item on the list:  Artificial Flavors.

I mentioned the graham cracker theory to the kids on the way to school.  Sierra suggested that we have smores for breakfast everyday.  I think that sounds heavenly but not likely.  If I ate smores for breakfast everyday I think the only thing that would happen is that I'd get smore width on my otherwise happy behind.   But I did say we could maybe add them to the Friday Night Sleepover Party ritual.  So if you want to feel happy with us Friday night, just stop by and don't forget the marshmallows!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Yes, Yes, The Player Was In Town

No, no I didn't blog while he was here.  We did play outside with the kids a lot:  playing a variety of sports with J-dude and having boat races in the water racing down the side of the street with Sisi.  We did some yard work.  We went to church, though I skipped the adult education class before church.    We also went for a walk at Parklands, hoping to see lots of bluebells.

Instead we saw the flooded Mackinaw River!  It was amazing.

This was the river yesterday.   Below is the same area a couple weeks ago: 

The bluebells were there, but swimming. 

We ate lots of good food including some salmon cooked...well, it was going to be cooked on the grill.  But when I opened the grill last night here is what I found:

I cleaned out most of it but there was too much debris in the bottom of the grill and it was getting late, so I made the salmon in the microwave which was quick and delicious!  The nest inside the grill turned out to be made by a starling.  She is back at it again today.  So before I clean the grill out completely I have to get a grill cover that will keep the little darling starling out. 

The Player enjoyed the salmon, the games, the boat races, the park, church and the smooches.  Wait, smooches?  Where did that  come from?  Well, anyway, we had a lovely weekend.  The Player is headed back east now.  We are missing him here already.   Even the Wolfster looks a little sad.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Just in Time

Yesterday afternoon I stopped by Home Depot and bought 2 new rakes.  The rakes now bear the names of my young 'uns, so they each have a rake of their own.  The rakes are meant to be used to help rake up every tiny little stick in the yard so that the new reel mower doesn't stop every 6 feet when a twig catches in the reel.  Our back yard neighbors have an elm tree that drops about 100 sticks per minute as far as I can estimate.  The kids helped rake and as a reward they got to help mow.  HAHAhahahaha.  That concept will not last forever but I am all about living in the moment with the mowing help!

The Grass Conquerer!

Stuck sticks stink!
We got the yard mowed and looking nice just before the rain began.  It's been raining about 12 hours now and promised to continue for 40 days and 40 nights according to the Weather Channel.  I hope Sierra will have the ark built in time and I sure hope that cardboard and duct tape will weather the flood!

Thursday, April 21, 2011


The sky is a beautiful shade of blue this morning and I'm so glad to see it.  I have missed you, blue sky!  I have missed you so while you were preening behind those gray clouds the past week.  Ahh, welcome back.  Please do not feel the need to rush off again and fix your hair or makeup, you are loved and wanted just like you are.  Ok, maybe with just a little more warmth please.  After all it's late April and 35 degrees is somewhat nippy.  Not that I'm complaining, just, um, noticing. 

Perhaps by the time I cut the grass this afternoon it will be in the 50s.  That would be swell. 

It is Maundy Thursday.  This year I am wondering what the word maundy means, exactly.   (I probably have wondered about that before, found the answer, and then forgotten it by the time it rolls around again the next year.  If you know that to be true, kindly refrain from sharing the details of my forgetfulness.)  Wikipedia says there is more than one theory.  My favorite is that it is derived from the Latin word for mandate, because at the Last Supper Jesus gave his disciples a new commandment or mandate:  Love one another as I have loved you.  


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Thank you!

April 20th is Volunteer Recognition Day.  I volunteer to be recognized!  If anyone wants to recognize me, I'll be the one driving my car, doing my job, and walking my dog Wolf later.  Just say, "Hey, I know that woman!  She's the one with the hummus problem!"  Though right now I don't have a problem because I have not one but two little tubs of hummus in the fridge, left over from the retreat last weekend.  I think I now have most of my friends trained as there were at least 5 containers of hummus among the snacks on Friday night.

 It's also Look Alike Day, so if anyone wants to look like me they are welcome to do so, though probably slightly crazy.

I can look out my front window and see the neighbor's redbud tree is getting it's color on.  My lilacs are still waiting for warmer temps and only one of my tulips is brave enough to think about blooming.  My grass, however, is all about growing fast and green, though it's been too wet to mow.  One drawback of the reel mower:  doesn't cut very long grass well, so I will have to take advantage of any time this week when it's dry enough to get out there, no matter if it's really really chilly. 

The word chilly makes me think of the word cool, which makes me think of NCIS:  LA which I have started watching since I realized that both LL Cool J and Linda Hunt are in the show.  Who would have ever pictured the two of them together in a television show?  Not I.  But whoever did that was brilliant.  Tuesday is the Night of Living Dangerously if you interrupt me between 7 and 8 o'clock. 

Not really, you may feel free to interrupt me to bring me hummus.  Or possibly chocolate but it had better be really good chocolate.  Or if you want to stop by and cut the grass for me.  Or if you are LL Cool J then you may stop by.  

On a more serious note, thank you to all the volunteers out there.  Thank you to my parents who volunteer every year for a couple of months or more at Sager Brown in Baldwin, Louisiana.  Thank you to the NCC people who volunteer to help each other out when the Care Committee people come calling and emailing.  Thank you to school volunteers.  Thank you to Red Cross people, Doctors without Borders volunteers, those of you who cook for homeless shelters,  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tuesday is the New Sunday

Yesterday did not feel like a day off from work.  It was only a day off from my regular job but a day very much ON for everything else I do.  I taught at the cancer center and had not one but two challenging opportunities to control my Irish mouth.  I had groceries, laundry, and other mundane kinds of errands to run.  I had NCC treasury tasks to perform (serving the Lord with love and deposit slips!), and then I went to the kids' school.

Job one at the school:  help out in the library.  First graders are still cute in April.  Job two at the school:  meet with J-dude's teachers about his change in attitude, behavior, and school work (not changes for the better of course, there is never a meeting about those changes) since he returned from his lengthy spring break in Ecuador with his dad.  Jeremiah attended the meeting as well, but his participation matched his effort at school lately. 

So the wise Mrs F assigned Jeremiah an essay to write last night about his changes.  That 3 paragraph essay took the poor kid over 2 hours to get down on paper.  It did help him open up about why he feels differently about school and gave me some ideas about how to help him get back in touch with his better angels.    Also we will be making a trip to the doctor this week to find out if some of his medication is to blame.  (Oh please God let it be so easy...ha!)

Today I am going back to work to rest!

Monday, April 18, 2011

My LIttle People

It was great to be back with my little people yesterday after getting home from the retreat.  We played in the back yard, watched the Cubs lose, and ordered our typical Sunday evening pizza from Papa Johns.  Sierra invented some kind of dog food dispenser out of cardboard boxes.  We had our Friday night sleepover party on Sunday.  I love my little people.

Who wouldn't adore a kid who can dribble, shoot, and eat pizza at the same time?!

Some day this girl will be big enough to go to the women's retreat with me.  I look forward to that.  She will fit right in!

Sunday, April 17, 2011


The retreat got off to a challenging beginning, what with the tornado warnings on the drive down.  Several of us had to pull off the road and wait out the scary weather.  Nikki, Marie and I stopped at a rest area which turned out not to have one of those storm shelter bathrooms but there was a guy with laptop access to a weather radar map so we knew when to stay put and when it was safe to drive on. 

Nikki is a driving super-hero now, unafraid of driving in crazy weather and also willing to run out to her car to get me a forgotten jacket.  Here she is drying off her super-hero raincoat.

Once at the convent, the good times began to roll, however, and we had a lovely evening.  Here is the signage on the wall of the room where we met:

Dad, I can see why you didn't send me to Latin School now.  For everyone else if you don't get it, well, it's a private joke.

The weather Saturday was still cold and rainy, not good for being outdoors..  We had our morning meetings indoors.  In the afternoon we had naps, we sat in front of the fireplace, and some of us got silly.  Specifically Kathy, Jean, and I...we climbed onto a twin bed with some glasses of wine and giggled loudly enough to keep some would-be nappers awake.  (We were told this later or we would have hushed up, of course, as naps are one of my particularly favorite parts of the retreat.)  Here is a picture of Kathy and Jean just before the wine-spilling incident...

And here is Jeannie just after that same incident:

But here we are a little later, you can see how repentant we are:

And forgive us our spillages as we forgive those who have spilled against us.

As always the retreat was just what I needed and I always look forward to the next one.  Which for those of you who might like to attend, is April 21 to 23, 2012. 

Friday, April 15, 2011

Retreat Weekend!

Today, after I get my kids to school, my work done, my CPR class completed, my house cleaned, my dog-sitter ready to take care of the Wolfster, and my bags packed I am heading to the Annual NCC Women's Retreat in Springfield.  This year the theme is Nurturing, and most of us only want to talk about nurturing ourselves, since we nurture other people much of the time.  I think going to this retreat every year, in spite of protests from my kids, is one of the ways I have consistently nurtured myself for the last 7 years. 

I won't blog tomorrow so don't fret.  I'll be back Sunday. 

Thursday, April 14, 2011


The bluebells are here!  The bluebells are here!

I went to Parklands yesterday afternoon and ended up walking for over an hour.  It is not yet the peak of spring wildflower season, but she is in her last week of being a pre-teen, and soon she will be busting out all over!  There were a few fields of bluebells, some violets, trillium, and shooting stars.  The redbuds were just showing a hint of lavender.  It was an absolutely perfect day to walk there.  I saw only one other person, a few birds, and a beaver!  I scared the poor furry fella who was up on the banks collecting sticks for his dam I suppose, and he took off running into some brush as soon as he heard me come down the path. 

I fell in love, too, with a new tree.  Here s/he is:

I must have been under the influence of endorphins by this time in the walk, but I became hopelessly enamored of every curve of each branch of this gnarly beauty.  I could not help but think how beautiful that tree has grown without one thought for it's own appearance.  It is a tree being a unique and strong tree.  It's perfect.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My New Wheels!

I mowed my front yard yesterday evening all by myself for the first time in several years.  I decided not to have Oscar the Grouch take care of my yard this summer.  Yes, yes, I am proud of myself!  Not only did I mow the front yard all by myself but I purchased and assembled an 18 inch Remington reel mower all by myself!   I had to explain to two of my neighbors that you could still get these babies at Sears and Roebuck, and that indeed No Gas Is Required!   That's right, I will not have to pay $4/gallon to get my grass cut. 

Later today I will mow the back yard all by myself!  With the same self-assembled mower.  Did I mention that I got 3 discounts on that mower...$10 off the regular price, a discount for applying for a Sears card, and a discount for then using the same Sears card to buy the mower.  Ha!  I am feeling proud of myself, very very proud.

"Pride goeth before a fall" just popped into my head. Ooops.  Well, if I fall down then I won't be proud and I will be explaining to someone how that fall was so dumb...and I will be telling that person as I am paying them to finish cut my grass, so I think I will now try to practice a little humility or perhaps just some humidity if I can't muster the humility today.

Yesterday while driving my car and talking with the new physical therapist that is coming to work for us, the humidity must have accelerated to the point where my hair could no longer be contained by the barrette holding it back.  Without warning the clasp came undone and the barrette flew off and snapped me in the back.  Either it was the humidity or my car is haunted.  We laughed about that and I decided I had better opt for the soft scrunchie to hold my hair back the rest of the day.  So I guess I've already practiced humidity and better muster up some humility. 

But, but, but...look at this:

so sleek and simple!  So gas-free!  So, wait, I think my handle is on backwards! 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Day of Big Wind

April 12, 1934.  The winds at the top of Mount Washington, at the Observatory, were recorded at 231 miles per hour.  No tornado or hurricane, just regular old-fashioned ridiculously big winds.  That's why April 12th is Big Wind Day.

Of course it might be that the residents of some nearby New Hampshire town just ate lots and lots of beans on April 11th.

Mount Washington Observatory has a website in which they claim that the top of Mount Washington at just over 6000 feet elevation has the worst weather anywhere.  I'm pretty sure I went up there on my trip to New England in the summer of 1991.  I'm pretty sure that I was in New Hampshire trying to head to Maine when a hurricane, Hurricane Bob, sent us west instead of east.  So I visited Cooperstown and the Baseball Hall of Fame instead.   Maine is one of the two states I have still never visited.  Because of some potential Big Wind.

You could celebrate Big Wind Day in a number of ways, which I will leave to either 1.  your imagination, or 2. some clever people to describe in the comments.



Monday, April 11, 2011


Yesterday Sierra went to a friend's house where a group of 6 girls did origami and played together.  She came back with several pieces of origami including a butterfly, a pecking chicken, and a cup.  

I spent the afternoon with Jeremiah and a friend of his at Grady's batting cages.  It was hot and humid and only a few other people were there.  Jeremiah and Jacob tried out a variety of cages:  slow pitch baseball, slow pitch softball, medium pitch softball.  I started in slow pitch softball which is where I should have stayed.  I tried the slow pitch baseball (40 mph according to the sign).  I could not get my bat around fast enough to make contact on any of my 8 tries.  So I went back to the softball cages and stayed there for a while, then just watched the boys get better and better after they shook off the dust of a long winter of not swinging their bats.

I must admit I was disappointed that I could not hit a 40 mph baseball.  I guess I thought my ancient history of playing softball and 40+ years of listenting and watching baseball would have given me some ability to at least foul one off.  Maybe I should have tried for a bunt. 

The only thing I can say is that I did better in the batting cages than I would have at origami.

It's great to see your kids blossom in new ways every spring.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

April is the New July!

It was sunny and in the 70s yesterday, a perfect summer day.  In the afternoon I sat outside at Kathy's picnic table with Kathy and with our friend Tim who is visiting from Austin, Texas. I thanked him profusely for bringing warm weather up from the south with him on this visit.  He was here this week to help his parents move into an assisted living apartment.  The work was done, so Tim had a little hanging-out time.  He called me in the morning while I was working and I didn't answer because at first I didn't recognize the number.  I was with a patient, a young guy who just had his seven-millionth knee surgery.

At least I thought I didn't answer.  But I think my phone has a secret button on the side.  I think the use of that button is "the opposite of what you think you are doing by pressing stuff on the touch screen."  I think the inventor of that button is a 20-something kid from Santa Cruz, California, who sits around on the beach every weekend laughing his a** off thinking to himself, "hahaha...old suckers!"  So while Joe Techno-Dude was having a margarita and laughing himself silly, I was joking around with my patient.

Here is what I said:
"I'm not going to answer that, I'm not sure who it is."

Anonymous patient:  "Go ahead, I don't mind."

Me:  "No, it's not my boyfriend.  If it was I'd let you answer it."

Anonymous patient:  "I would say...YO!  Whaddya want?  We're kinda busy here!"

AP's wife and I laughed, then we all got back to the business of me making him do his danged exercises. 

Later I went to find that "missed call" and lo-and-behold (Behold is one of my favorite words, ever since those cheese commercials in the 90s that said "behold!  the power of cheese!") it was not there.  I went on to my next patient's house.  I saw my next patient.  Then on the way home it occured to me to check...Received Calls!  ACK!  There it was and then I recognized it as Tim's number.

Politely, Tim claimed he could only hear the laughing.  And being of the same age, he claimed to understand my phancy phone diphiculties.

So we got together, drank a little Beaujolais (Mr. Beaujangles-Ole!) and ate some bread, some bleu cheese, some brie, and some drunken goat cheese though not in ball form.  It's great to sit with people you have known for ... oh, my, over 40 years!...and enjoy the sunshine.

Life is so so good.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Falling Into Grace

I didn't blog yesterday and not one person checked to see if I was still alive.  Of course I talked to many of you on the phone, emailed, or sent telepathic messages that said "I'm Okay!  I'm Okay!"

Yesterday was another Mom Mom Mom morning and I was also having trouble finding a topic to blog about that kept my attention.  Today in the news, Kirstie Alley fell down on TV.  Hmmm.  I'm not the only one having trouble finding interesting topics, I see.  My patients fall down frequently when we aren't in their homes.  They tell us three days later and say "but I'm Okay!  I'm Okay!"  But I still have to fill out odious paperwork and call their doctors.  The patients hate this.  How would they feel if every time they fell down it became national news?  It might decrease the number of falls significantly if they knew everyone in America would watch the video on YouTube.

While trying to help my patients not fall again, I often ask them how they fell.  Without fail the story begins, "Oh, it was so stupid..."  I did not understand that until a few years ago I fell in my driveway, on ice, and when I thought about it I said to myself:

Self, that was so stupid.

Then I said, "but I'm Okay, I'm Okay!"

But I wasn't and then I had to have shoulder surgery 2 years later because....well...that was so stupid.

Someday, though I will encounter some enlightened being who says, "It was a very smart fall." 

The smartest saying I've ever heard about falling is:  Fall seven times.  Stand up eight.

That's a Japanese Proverb.  The Japanese people need that strength right now.  Later today I'm taking Sierra to the bank to get her coins counted.  I think she has about $80 of her $200 goal.  Stand up tall and proud, girl.  And if you fall down, get up and keep going.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Make Up Your Own Holiday Day!

It's No Housework Day today.  I sure wish I had cleaned up after the book group meeting last night before midnight so I could observe this day.  But there seem to be some dishes to wash and some brownies to put away...

brownies?  Excuse me for a minute....

I am going to suggest we change today to Enjoy some leftover brownies for breakfast Day.

Have a good one y'all!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

When Weeds are Enough

I had volunteered to give a short prayer to open the steering committee meeting last night at church.  I chose to read the poem Praying by Mary Oliver, because April is Poetry Month and I didn't read a poem at church during Poetry Sunday this year. 

* * * * *


It doesn't have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stones;  just pay attention, then patch

a few words together and don't try
to make them elaborate, this isn't
a contest but the doorway

into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.

Mary Oliver

* * * * *

Sometimes when I blog I manage to patch a few words together that open a doorway.  Usually it's a doorway to receive comments from my friends and family who read my blog.  I love those comments!  Amen to comments!

Prayer is tricky.  There is no right way, but it seems to me there are definitely some approaches that do not work for me.   Usually the best thing for me is to be quiet.  That isn't easy for me.  Not just not speaking, but also not thinking about what I need to pick up at The Jewel later and not fidgeting.  Walking in the woods is about the best way for me to really pray.  In spite of what Mary Oliver says, sometimes I do need the blue iris, the weeds aren't enough.   But when the weeds are enough to create that stillness within, then I know it's going to be a good day.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Even Moms Need a Mantra

Here is how my morning went between 6 and 7 when I usually blog.
1.  "Mom..?"
2.  "Mommm?"
3.  "MOM?"
4.  "MOMMM!"

Repeat steps 1 to 4 about 1,392 times.  You get the idea.  I was unable to multitask enough to actually write a blog.

This morning I am going back to work.  Or I am trying to go back to work.  The Scheduling Gods are not smiling upon me with favor, though.   I am trying to put some money on the kids lunch account online, but the Skyward Website Gods are not smiling upon me with favor either.  Things are not going smoothly in general.

I walked the kids to school this chilly sunny morning.  They rode their scooters.  Such troopers, they wanted to ride even though the wind chill was 25 degrees.  I think repeating their mantra "MOM" makes them somehow immune to the effects of cold air.   I would like a mantra that makes me immune to the frustrations of my job today.  When we got to the school I couldn't get Sierra's scooter to fold up like it is supposed to, so it can fit into her cubby.  I tried the mantra that rhymes with SKIT several times but that didn't work. 

I am muscle-achy all over from the all the yoga I did yesterday in the class I took.  I need a mantra to soothe muscle aches.  I need some extra-strength tylenol and a bubble bath.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Coffee-Drinking, Work-Doing, Blog-Writing, Football-Tossing, Proud Mama Kinda Gal

I'm up extra early today because I am going to a class in Springfield and I need to leave around 6:30.  I am trying to get some work done on my schedule for tomorrow on my work computer, drink some coffee, and blog at the same time.   If I were a superheroine I would be MultiTasking Woman!

Sadly, though, I am not a superheroine and mostly I have accomplished the coffee drinking part only.

It was very warm yesterday here, our first day of over-70 degree temperatures.  I played basketball in the driveway with The Boy.  I played baseball in the backyard with The Boy.  I threw a football to The Boy while he bounced on the trampoline.  I threw one overhand spiral that earned some admiration points from the Boy...."Mom, perfect spiral and you threw that one HARD!"  It just goes to show you that the law of averages will always win out and after 7 million bad passes one of them will accidentally be just right.

Sierra earned some serious admiration at church yesterday with her coin-collecting-to-help-Japan endeavor.  I read an announcement during the service about her project, and then she set up a table after church to collect coins.  When we left she had not only lots of coins but also over $30 in bills from people who claimed not to have any coins.  One gentleman came to the house in the afternoon to drop off coins because he didn't have any at the service.  I think that with all the contributions so far she must have about $80+.  So thank you to everyone who is making her know she can make a difference.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

There's a Recipe???

After we attempted to make Goo yesterday with Elmer's Glue and Tide, and after the attempt was somewhat unsuccessful (I will spare you the photos), the Boy said "Maybe on the handout they gave us it tells what kind of laundry detergent you are supposed to use."

The Hand Out.  Hmmm.

The Boy got the Hand Out from his book bag.  We weren't supposed to use School Glue but some other kind of white Elmer's glue that is specifically NOT school glue (?) and we were supposed to use Borox, not regular detergent.  And the proportions were clearly spelled out.  And some water was supposed to be included.  Since we had neither the right kind of glue, nor any Borox, we did not continue the Goo Making Project.  (The hand out called it Slime but I'm attached to calling it Goo by now.)

So instead we made pancakes.  Because there isn't enough rhubarb to harvest yet for the Pie Head Congressional Dessert Caucus Meeting coming up.  And it's raining.  Do you think the rain will hurt the rhubarb? 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Green Goo

Jeremiah's class had a field trip yesterday to Heartland Community College.  This is the year no one was going to get to take field trips due to funding cuts, yet this is his second field trip so far.  Go figure.  On the way home Sierra got mad when she realized he's had two just this year and she has had zero in her three years at Oakdale.  She suddenly felt much happier when he offered to let her play with the Goo they made in the chemistry lab on the field trip.

Apparently you can make this stuff with glue, laundry detergent and food coloring.   Apparently the kids and I are going to do that right now.  If I don't blog tomorrow you'll know I am caught inside a big tub of Goo.    

Friday, April 1, 2011

Everything's Coming Up Rhubarb

No roses in my garden, but this sign of spring is sure to make Ted Tingley smile:

I hope this is the year I can harvest enough for a pie from my own garden.  I hope Dad will be here when that happens, too! 

Other signs of spring in my backyard this year include the kids playing my favorite sport...

and last but not least, the lilacs are still making slow steady progress toward blooming.

Happy April, y'all!  And Go Cubs!