Monday, September 19, 2016

Grasshopper Days

Grasshopper Days

For today, Monday, September 19, 2016

It's a Very Special Day today...

And if you live near a Krispy Kreme,
it's even special-er,
because they're giving out free doughnuts (booty!)
to those who talk or dress like a pirate!

Outside my window...

yesterday, this lovely view of the dogwood...

today, this slightly soggier view.

Nice weather for ducks.

Hearing...  water running, inside and out!

Pondering...  strange, strange dreams I had last night.
They make no sense at all.

* for two friends with cancer
* for this headache to GO AWAY
* for Kerry's work
* for the boys' schooling
* for my friends in the Solomons and Myanmar
* for wisdom every day

* I was out this morning in a total downpour -->

with friends, getting soaked,
and one reminded us,
"We're only a hot shower away from being comfortable!"

Thankful, as always,
for my cozy, warm, dry house.

Which is so easy to take for granted.

Wearing...  DRY clothes!
My dyed indigo jeans, turquoise t-shirt layered over a long white T,
and my "holeys".
I wear crocs for slippers around the house,
for happier feet,
and when the boys were little they called them "holeys".

Going...  tonight is the first rehearsal for Messiah.
We may have a different director this year,
as our much-beloved regular director is dealing health issues.
I think about taking a year off.
The new director would be FINE :D
I'm just tired.

So today is not a good day to make a decision, right?
I will go to rehearsal for a couple weeks and see what I think.

Looking forward to...
a few more sunny days forecast for this week.
Need to pack away the picnic table and a few other things.
Time to batten down the hatches,
so to speak.

In the kitchen...
the boys are planning a pizza dinner,
and having a friend over on their last "free" night
before school starts (for the older boys).

In the learning rooms...
I'll be picking up Gunnar shortly,
and he'll have a busy day.
He does his Bible reading,
finishes any homework from the high school,
then launches into his homeschool work.
It feels like a LOT to him,
but he's settling into a routine.

Around the house...
Wyatt and Tate are doing some chores,
emptying garbages,
vacuuming the living spaces,
and I hope to spread some fall color around soon :D

Noticing that...
the sun peeks out,
mocking me for getting soaked earlier this morning!

Something to remember for later...
Naomi likes to talk on the phone,
and she loves to talk to the boys.
But she called last night,
and they were all in bed!

The Mother Load...
* calendar summit with Kerry (compare notes)
* inventory the gift box (90 days until Christmas!)
* make a plan (for gifts)
* make an appointment for Tate's annual check-up
* clean the furnace filters
* clean the inside of the windows
* get boys to do the outside
* re-sort my dresser and closet (seasonal)
* fill out online registration forms for Tate to see a new dentist (wisdom teeth - oh no!)
* photograph a quilt (an old one)

Isn't it an exciting life?
I'll try not to brag and gloat ;D

A favorite quote for today...
I avoid much of the news.
There's nothing I can do about it,
and it's depressing.

Yesterday in church we sang this,

This is my Father's world,
O let me never forget,
that though the wrong
seems oft so strong
God is the Ruler yet.
This is my Father's world,
the battle is not done;
Jesus who died
shall be satisfied,
and earth and heaven be one.


One of my favorite things...
having all my "chicks" at home in the nest in the evening.
It's getting rarer as they get older.

A verse for today...
to go with the song.
We sing this in Messiah,
so I "hear" it in King James...

The kingdom of this world is become
the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ;
and He shall reign for ever and ever.

A few plans for the rest of the week...
* keep Gunnar perking along through his schoolwork
* help Wyatt and Tate if they need anything as they launch into classes
* rehearsal tonight (me!)
* CAP Tuesday evening (the boys)
* CERT Thursday evening
* Back-to-school-night Tuesday evening (me)
* haircut (me!)
* lunch with my neighbor
* breathe in and out...

A peek into my world...
fall comes and I feel the need for COZY.
I move the furniture in my bedroom,
change the sheets,
add another quilt...

It's time for more candles around the house.

What do you do to be cozy?

Friday, September 16, 2016

Friday Brain Dump

A few thoughts and a few (unrelated) giggles for your weekend...

1.  Yes, it's Friday,
but it doesn't feel like it.

We are two weeks into September,
two weeks,
 and there is no (public) school today
because the teachers need a work-day.

I'm all for teachers
and giving them what they need,
but already?
While Gunnar and I are happy for the day off,
I think it's all a plot to make the school year longer.


Wyatt and Tate are mowing the neighbors weeds.
I'd say the "lawn",
but the grass is too dry to grow,
so really they're just knocking the weeds down.
Because - of course - weeds apparently don't need rain to grow.

Gunnar is downstairs practicing his violin.

He's never said this,
but I'm sure he's thought it.
(Haven't we all?)

2.  Wyatt and Tate go back to school on Tuesday.

C'mon, Wyatt, just one more quarter.
Please do more than the bare minimum to pass and graduate.

And Tate,
my rocket-on-the-launch-pad-with-rumbling-engines,
please leave yourself some margin in your life!

3.  My boys in college...

I remember my years in public high school and college,
and pray that it is a positive and productive time in their lives.

Michael Farris, of the HSLDA,
(the Home School Legal Defense Association)
wrote of the students at Patrick Henry College,

There are times that I get a bit jealous of our students.
My experience as a student in secular colleges was quite different.
Although I was a Christian, I often found myself integrated
into the general patterns of student life.
At times, I tried to stand up for what I believed,
but much of the time I lived a kind of a PG-13 version
of the R-rated world swirling around me.

We can do so much better!

4.  I went to my first Bible Study Fellowship this week.

With Gunnar going to p/t high school,
I'm in a whole new universe!

And how dorky is it that I felt kind of nervous when I got there
and saw all the cars, and all the women?!

Because really,
here are women gathering
because they want to study God's Word.
That should be one of the nicest groups of people on the planet, right?

And they were really nice.

Also, they are MANY.
So many that they may not have (literal) space for all the newcomers.
So I wait for an call or email to see if I got in.

5.  I got to hang out with my friend Sara last night.

Our kids are involved in CAP together and are taking the CERT class.
So sometimes while they're occupied,
we hang out, grab a bite,
and solve all the world's problems over Taco Bell's Cinnabon nuggets.

Went to WallyWorld with a budget to spend on someone else,
and isn't that fun?!
Now to package it all up and get it in the mail :D

6.  And now I need to think about lunch for the boybarians,
because they're all heading out to the rifle range with Grandpa Grasshopper
to sight in a new rifle.

And because it's just plain fun to shoot.

7.  Lastly, for all the "princesses" and "maidens" out there...

Have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Adventures in Dyeing

I spelled that right,

Because I'm dyeing,
not dying. ;D

I had some fabric I wanted to experiment on,
and some old denim that could use some "freshening up".

(Kerry always liked it when my Nana would ask,
"Can I freshen up your drink?"
meaning, can I give you some more coffee/tea/etc.)

The denim didn't need a beverage.
It was faded.

Moving right along...

I ordered some indigo dye.

Oh my.

If you do this,
do it outside.
Because it really REALLY stinks.

Who knew?

And read all the instructions.
It was good to know ahead that the dye would look greenish yellow.
You can't tell very well from the photo (above),
but if you look in the lower right corner you can kind of see it.

We also experimented with a white t-shirt my brother handed down to Gunnar.
And I'm really glad I had read through the tips or I might've freaked out
to see it emerge from the dye...

bright neon green!

It's a reactive dye.

When exposed to oxygen it not-so-slowly
turns bluer...

and bluer...

and bluer.

I like how the collar still looks green,
because the dye was dripping down,
so it took longer to oxidize at the bottom.

(It did all turn blue eventually.)

The key to making things darker is not letting them soak longer,
but letting them dry and then re-dipping them,
and repeating the oxidization process.

My old faded shorts and crop jeans came out a great shade of indigo :D
A light blue cardigan I rarely wore looks a lot better.
And Gunnar's white thermal shirt and t-shirt are deep blue,
(and more likely to be worn.)

And my white and green fabric?
I had hoped the green would turn more turquoise,
but I think the green-dyed fabric didn't "accept" the blue very much.
Still, I like it!

Of course, it all looked so vivid on the line,
freshly dyed.

And after going through the wash?

Yah, it faded some.  The color isn't as deep.

But what can I say?
I love blue.
Almost any blue!

And I only used half the chemicals that came in the dye kit,
so we can do it all again later :D

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Grasshopper Days and Testosterzone Summer

Grasshopper Days

For today, Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Outside my window...  warm sunshine - hallelujah,
but there's a hint of fall in the air.
The mornings are cool and dewy,
and the days are noticeably shorter.

But instead of photos of today,
how about these from last month?
We were at my parents' beach with friends,
and the boys got to go tubing!

Two of mine, plus a friend.

Hearing...  the neighbor's motorcycle has squeaky brakes.

Pondering...  I think my brain has gotten rusty!
I'm trying to do some reading,
and realize that I need a Bible and pen and paper
right next to me
to get the value out of some of these books!

Praying...  for the boys :D

* Wyatt *
needs a direction, a goal.
Yes, the immediate goal is to finish his AA in December.
And then?

* Tate *
has registered for twenty credits fall quarter.
And has a job.
And is working on a promotion at CAP.
And is finishing up a CERT class.
(Community Emergency Response Team.)

* Gunnar *
is adjusting to a much fuller schedule as well.
He's also taking the CERT class,
taking three classes at the high school,
three at home,
and continuing to advance at CAP.
And we'll pick up the violin lessons again
when CERT finishes.


I'm everyone's manager.

Pray for me!

Thankful...  Kerry continues to have work :D

While Gunnar is still frustrated by the amount of work he has,
he's doing it more cheerfully.

Wearing...  blue jean shorts and a teal t-shirt.
Because I am all that and a bag of chips ;D

Creating... new plans, new goals, new rhythms,
for this new season of life.

Going...  to bed early tonight!

Reading...  just finished Wendell Berry's Jayber Crow,
(that's not the one I need a pen and paper for!)
and starting a Nancy Pearcey book.

Looking forward to...  moving the furniture around.
I know, it's a thrill a minute over here!

In the kitchen...  lasagna for dinner tonight.
From a box.
Because my three-day headache is (I hope?) finally abating.

In the learning rooms...  Gunnar,
working diligently on his Biology
review of the first chapter.
Test tomorrow!
He already had his first history test - 95% :D
Good job, Gunnar!

Around the house...  dust.
Wyatt and Tate are doing some digging under the house,
and somehow the dust works its way into the house.

Noticing that...  oh!
Gunnar just told me that the "substitute" for his Spanish class
is now the all-year-teacher.
All righty then.
Works for me,
because he really likes this teacher :D

Something to remember for later...  see the photo below,
CAP is doing good things for my boys :D
Gunnar just promoted to Master Sergeant,
and Tate gave the monthly Safety Briefing,
completely off-the-cuff
and did well :D

The Mother Load...
Let's not go there right now.
Not until the headache is truly gone.

Something fun to share...  driving the boys to their Thursday night CERT class
means a chance to hang out with my friend Sara :D
(Her oldest two are also in the class.)

A favorite quote for today...  

If your goal is purity of heart,
be prepared to be thought very odd.
Elisabeth Elliot

One of my favorite things...
warm, breezy, sunny fall days with hardly any flies :D

A Bible verse...
Psalm 111:2
Great are the works of the Lord,
studied by all who delight in them.
Full of splendor and majesty is His work,
and His righteousness endures forever.

Now isn't that a great reason to homeschool?
We study the works of the Lord because we delight in them,
and in Him.

A few plans for the rest of the week...

gee, now that the week is half gone...

* keep Gunnar on track with his school work
* make sure Tate and Wyatt have everything they need to start school
(we bought Tate's books today)
* hang out with my friend Sara tomorrow evening
* check out Bible Study Fellowship tomorrow morning
* get full use out of the minions before they're busy with school work
(i.e. make them do chores)

A peek into my world...

somebody forgot to check their pockets
and sent some tissues through the laundry.

(It was me.)

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Yellow Aster Butte

When Tate chose a cel phone to buy,
he wanted it to have a good camera.

He chose well :D

My iPhone takes great close ups,
but doesn't do well with distance.

These photos of Tate's look like they were taken with an SLR!

Tate, Wyatt, and their cousin Ben took a day-hike up to Yellow Aster Butte.
And boy did they pick the right day!

While it's not a long hike,
(seven or eight miles round trip?)
the significant elevation gain
 - about 3000' - 
provides amazing views of the surrounding peaks,
both in Washington and Canada!


That's Mt. Baker,
by the way.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains -
where does my help come from?

My help comes from the Lord,
the maker of heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot slip -
He who watches over you
will not slumber;
He who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord watches over you -
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all harm -
He will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forever more.

Looking back down,
you can see the trail down to the right,
but they started waaaaay down in the valley.

Love those smiles up at the top!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Blakely Island

We're so lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world...
God's own country ;D

Green all year,
salt water...

... and friends with boats!

"Captain Dave" took Kerry and the boys on a day-trip out to Blakely Island.

Kerry had a fabulous time.

Leaving Bellingham,
the WWU campus is up on the hill above the tug.
Those brick buildings you see (up, to the left)
are dorms.
I'm kind of envious of their view!

Captain Dave

That's the old Bellingham City Hall in the background,
now a museum.

Everybody got to drive the boat,
and didn't they have a gorgeous day for it?

Visiting tall ships.
That's the Lady Washington in front,
don't know the other one.
If the Lady Washington looks a little bit familiar,
you may be a Pirates of the Caribbean fan.
(She was the HMS Interceptor.)

Go, Gunnar, Go!

On the return trip
they met up with a local freight train...

Perfect way to spend a summer day,
right, Tate?