Friday, May 28, 2010

Gray Day. Quiet Day.

Gray day.  Everything is gray.
I watch, but nothing moves today.

That sounds depressing, but not meant to be, in this case.
(Anyone recognize what book that's from?)

I haven't been posting much lately, because we haven't had much going on.
I think my recent wish has been granted... several times this week.
We've had some very ordinary days.  Good for getting things done.
The rain makes it easier to focus on getting through our school work,
and we are coming down the homestretch!

The boys are having a PTO day today
and I've been running around all over town this morning.
Eight errands.

A couple of fun ones...
What with planning for the next school year,
I'm feeding the organizing side of my brain, again.

And I bought myself a birthday present.
(Next month.)
Kerry and the boys can wrap it, if they want ;D

I know.  Wrong season.
That's okay.
I've wanted one of these for years,
and when you get a 33% off coupon...
well, it's time.

The house is quiet, but for the rain dripping.
My errands are done, things are put away,
and Mt. Laundry is slowly shrinking.
I will make myself a hot cup of something good,
and try to ignore the pockets of clutter, yet untamed.
And I am going to sit and listen to the quiet,
and the rain.

You heavens above, rain down righteousness;
let the clouds shower it down.
Let the earth open wide, let salvation spring up,
let righteousness grow with it;
for I, the Lord, have created it.

Isaiah 45:8

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

It Is What It Is

It was a grim morning for Wyatt:

He who guards his lips guards his life, but...

And Tate:

... in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

Another entry for their books.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Simple Woman #62

For Today...  May 24, 2010

Outside my window... cool, cloudy skies.  Lows in the 40's this week.  Spring?

I am thinking... I got a LOT done this weekend.  Feels good :D

I am thankful for... my shiny, blue kitchen floor.

I am praying for... a couple of architecture jobs that may come Kerry's way.  (When I say "job", I don't mean getting hired by a firm.  I mean, getting a job from a client to design something.)

I am wearing... turquoise capris, blue t-shirt, navy cardigan.  The capris were wishful thinking.  I could see a bit of clear sky when I got up.  I'll probably end up changing.

I am creating...  clean spaces in my house, clean laundry, and an organized office.

I am going...  to have Moms In Touch here today.

I am reading...  All Creatures Great and Small, aloud to the boys.  I'd forgotten how much there was to do with birthing in that book!  All animal-related, but still a bit of an education for the boys...

I am hoping... for an uneventful week!

I am hearing... the boys hammering on something.  I think they're making some kind of enormous skateboard.

I am remembering...

From the learning rooms... probability, direct and indirect objects, collages, the Alamo (!), statistics, measuring, more about acids and bases, the Mexican-American War, tints and hues, and logic puzzles.

Around the house... I'm hoping to take a room a week and do a deep cleaning.  Just did the kitchen.  What's next...

On my mind...  as summer is coming, finding the balance between just turning the boys loose and letting them play, and providing enough structure to their day to keep them from bickering.

Pondering these words...  Men and melons are hard to know.  Benjamin Franklin

One of my favorite things...  mmmm, the turkey taquitos we had for Saturday dinner.  Adapted from this recipe.

A few plans for the rest of the week...  no soccer!  Okay, we have one more soccer party.  No AWANA, either.  I'm liking the slower pace.

Here is a picture I am sharing...

Someone has just a little bedhead going on there...

Sunday, May 23, 2010


You know what separates the males from the females?
Dirt, danger, and destruction.

Case in point:
That debris on the floor is what drifted down when, while wrestling/pushing/grabbing each other  simply getting dressed, Wyatt and Tate managed to yank on their curtains and rip the bracket right out of the wall.

The 108 year-old wall that isn't exactly gyp board.

Well, now the boys have the chance to learn some home-repair skills as they spend their afternoon helping Daddy fix the hole in the wall and remount the curtain bracket.

I see they've begun with spackling.

But this will be harder to fix.  (You might have to click on the pic to see it.)  And Wyatt swears he has no idea at all how it came to be there.

You know, because someone else must have carved his initial into the top of his dresser.

We have the evidence.
We have a suspect.
We have opportunity.
And I think we've found the weapon, too.

But the motive?


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Tate the Naturalist

I've mentioned before that Tate has a way with animals.  Wherever we go he finds something to observe, and usually catch.  Frogscrickets, salamanders, crabs, fish, starfish, etc.  All of this is great!  I love it!

I don't so much love his fascination with the reptile kindgom.  And the fact that reptiles make up a disproportionate amount of his catch.  I've mentioned the two snakes lately, (he informs me he got pictures of the second, a "really cute baby" about six inches long.  Yah.)

And the latest acquisition?

One of his favorites, another Northern Alligator Lizard.

The stumpy tail shows that he has recently done battle and escaped.

Tate says, They have a definite advantage in the rocks, where they crawl into cracks and hide.  But in open areas they can't escape.  So be careful not to make any noise stalking them in the rocks.

Good advice for all you alligator lizard hunters.

By the way, Tate says jokingly, I take my prisoners of war, interrogate them for a day or two, and then parole them back where they came from.

He's keeping a tally of all the creatures he catches this year.  So far, 2 snakes, 1 lizard, 1 frog.  I'll keep ya posted.


I've been feeling ambitious lately.  Maybe my spring cleaning impulse got delayed by the un-spring-like weather I've been whining about mentioning for weeks.  Who knows.

*  I did about a bazillion loads of laundry last weekend, taking advantage of the warm and breezy days.  Love, love, love that fresh smell of line-dried laundry.  Did not so much love the musty smell in someone's closet before that.  Several more loads today.  Duh.  With three boys, it never ends.

*  Wyatt and Tate mowed the entire yard without direct supervision.  The grass mostly got cut (except for a few places... need to work on that overlap),  and - more importantly - nobody is missing any digits.  Hurray, boys!

*  I cleaned every single cupboard in the kitchen yesterday, inside and out.  Okay, the boys helped with the outsides.  And I filled a large garbage bag of stuff to take to Goodwill.  Yay, me!  Floors have been mopped, stripped (the mudroom), and waxed.  Some Fridays I'd link up to my blitzing, Organizing Mommy friend, but she is excused from blitzing this week.  She's had her first homeschool graduate and almost lost him, but for the wonderful grace of God.

*  Tate, being sweet, thanked me for being a good steward of the house and not letting it go entirely to seed.  He is busily constructing a model of the battle of the Alamo in his bedroom, using his special soldiers.  That will probably show up in a later post.

*  We had a family game night.  It got off to a rough start when we realized that the boys had removed the dice from all several of the games to play some kind of Lego game they invented.  Bad move.  But after we restored order to the game cabinet things began to look up.  Everything was pretty calm during Clue, but descended into hysteria with Apples to Apples.   Bedtime, how I love you!

*  And...  I'm listing this with my recent accomplishments just to give you all a laugh.  At my expense.  Because really, I'm so together.  I'm on top of it.  Yah.

Last week I took Wyatt and Tate on that wonderful field trip to NASWI.  We carpooled with several other homeschoolers.  And as we pulled up to go through the gate at the base my memory kicked in.

You know that law about having proof-of-insurance in your car at all times?  Yah, that one.  So, two years ago we decided to visit the Ft. Lewis Military Museum.  On a Sunday.  When normal businesses are closed.  As we stopped at the security office to get whatever paper or sticker we needed to drive onto the base... you can guess where this is going.  I probably had 20 proof-of-insurance cards in the van, but not the current one.  It took about a half hour to get someone on the phone that could fax something impressive enough to the security guys.  Because, clearly, a family in a minivan filled with dirty laundry and seashells is a threat to national security.  Live and learn, right?

Not so much.  As I waited at the NASWI gate, I saw the drivers ahead of me handing over papers to the guards, and I realized something.  I could see myself sitting at my desk and paying the bill for the car insurance a few weeks ago, and happily filing the papers away with the other month's bills.  Not so much putting the current little proof-of-insurance paper in the van.

Two cars ahead of us.  I'm frantically calmly searching through the glove box, the bin between the seats, the overhead pocket, not wanting to provoke a freak-out from all the boys in the back...

One car ahead of us.  I grab the latest insurance slip, expiration last month, and fold it up in the registration, and try to look cool.  And harmless.

Give it to the guard.  Smile.  Don't speak.  Pray.

And he waved us through.

Woo-hoo!  We're in, baby!  And would you believe I actually started remembering stories I've read to the boys about brave missionaries smuggling Bibles into closed countries?!  Because clearly my lack of planning compares to their courage...  (feel free to roll your eyes here.)

Kind of reminded me of, "You didn't slay the dragon?"  "It was on my to-do list."

Go ahead.  Laugh at me.

You're welcome.


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Stage Whisper

 Do your kids know how to whisper?
Because I'm not sure mine do.
Maybe it's a guy thing, because Kerry doesn't whisper either.

I'm remembering a day, don't ask me why, when Gunnar and I went to the grocery store.
He was just a little guy, probably about this old:

As we got in line at the checkstand, there was a young man in front of us, fully punked out.
Kind of like this.

I looked at Gunnar and he looked at me, with big, big surprised eyes.

And then, in a very loud whisper,

Mom!  That guy looks...
like a porcupine!

Fortunately for us, he was not a hostile porcupine.

Hula Girl... Reprise

Seems like I'm tying up some loose bloggy ends this week...  remember this?

I'm taking a chance, here, that the mail is moving quickly enough that I can post these.

See, I have this good friend who has been on my mind lately.  She's Tate's "Hearry Maid Fairy" and s wonderful friend.  Bubbly, witty, fun.  And, sadly, living two states away.

This is for her :D

Just because the funky fabric made me think of her.
And also because I can imagine her wrapping a little girl in it.
I hope.
But mostly it is for her.

I probably am putting up too many pics that are about the same.
I couldn't get the colors to look right.
The colors really make me think of those cheap plastic Easter eggs,
though the quilt has nothing to do with Easter.
And the turquoise should look much deeper.

The back is a retro, starry green, and the quilting is all done in stars.

This was definitely a labor of love.
No pattern, just out of my head.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Moments of Family Randomness

Rain is falling outside my window.  And I don't mind.  Soccer is done.  And we have an easier time focusing on school when the weather is less than glorious.  So we are having a very daily day.  I think.

1.  Life is full of simple pleasures.  Like getting the just-barely-dry laundry off the line right before the rain starts.  Sometimes you can just feel it coming.

2.  I'm not saying that my family is OCD or anything, but already there are emails bouncing around about who is bringing what when we all go to Oregon.  Because we all bring food.  And spices.  Actually, I have no idea what we'll eat.  But there will be paprika.  And possibly a salt lick.

3.  I gave the boys free choice in journal writing recently.  Gunnar wrote a long, rambly poem about Christopher Columbus,  It began something like, In fourteen hundred and ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.  At least that's what he meant to do...  The accompanying picture showed a large kraken devouring one of the ships.  Maybe the Santa Maria, but I couldn't be sure.  All I could make out was a lot of splashy water and tentacles.

4.  My boys find this absolutely hilarious and ask me to show it to them repeatedly:

You're welcome.

Monday, May 17, 2010


Remember the teaser?

I didn't forget.  An air-show was a good guess, but this was even better.  More like a private air-show for a small group of field-tripping homeschoolers.

If the acronym in the title didn't get you thinking military, maybe this will help.

(Are you humming the music from Top Gun?)

We got up bright and early last Thursday and drove out to Oak Harbor to spend six hours touring NASWI - Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.

What a thrill for the boys!  We were amazed at how much they packed into our day, and how much they let us see, touch, and photograph.  Not only that, but these guys (men and women) really love what they do.  Adrenaline junkies, for certain.

We started with the Search and Rescue crews.

Whidbey has two of these Nighthawk helicopters that serve the entire PNW, as well as the military.  The guys let the kids try out the gear, rappel out the door of the helo, and look at the cockpit.

We also toured their survival school.  They showed us how pilots are trained to escape from planes that crash in the water, how an ejection seat works, hilarious videos of pilots learning to withstand G-forces (the only one that didn't pass out was a woman!), and check out the simulator.

We got to go down to the hangars to see several of the airplanes.  We have a family friend who flies the P3-Orion, so we were really interested to get inside the two you see in this photo.  (No photos from inside.)

We got a good look at the "old" EA-6B Prowlers, which are being replaced by...

... these sleek looking EA-18G Growlers.  Okay, I am not military, so if I am mixing up my nicknames or alphabets, let me know so I can fix it, yah?  The boys were all over it, while I nodded and said, "Cool!"

We saw inside the radar room, the Meteorology and Oceanography Office, and probably more I'm forgetting just now.  But the thrill of the day was this.

They let us up into the control tower.  I couldn't believe it.  And they were launching all kind of stuff.  It was a perfect day for training - just look at the weather :D

And they even let the kids out on the catwalk.  156 feet up off the deck.  Very, very cool.

This has to be one of the best field trips we've ever done.  These folks love what they do and related wonderfully to the kids.  Answered every question.  Wore Tate's FM system without complaint, so he could hear everything, well, as much as the rest of us, with those jets screaming overhead all day.  And the boys just loved it.  Too bad my most military-minded kid will never be accepted.  Darn hearing loss.

Simple Woman #61

For today...  May 17, 2010

Outside my window...  the white dogwood is still going strong, I think robins are nesting in the grapevine again, and Podger is lounging in the sunny corner of his bunny run.

I am thinking...  the last few days have felt really busy, and the boys have - for the most part - been pleasant and well-behaved.  Of course, it may help that I watched two episodes of SuperNanny, so my frame of reference may be skewed (!), but it's nice to see fruit from years of challenging parenting.  We are still mid-course, though, so no time to get complacent.

I am thankful for...  sunny weather for Saturday's soccer marathon, good attitudes on the boys' part, and loads and loads of clean laundry.

I am praying for...  work for Kerry.  He has been under-employed for quite awhile now, and the architecture field seems just as depressed as ever.

I am wearing...  jeans, long-sleeve t-shirt.

I am reading...  The Whistling Season, by Ivan Doig.

I am hearing...  robins, chickadees, and stellar jays.

I am remembering...  the look on Tate's face when he first got his Hearing Aids.

From the learning rooms...  China's Opium Wars, turmeric base indicator paper and experiments, reading maps, multiplying by 2, James Herriott, and probability.

From the kitchen...  cleaning out the fridge :D

Around the house...  the Legos are taking over the family room, once again, and must be beat back into submission.  *sigh*

On my mind...  finishing out the school year and doing testing - Gunnar's first time.

Noticing that...  green, green, green, green, green.  Everything is green and growing right now.  Who knew chlorophyll came in so many shades of green?

Pondering these words...  unity does not come from sameness.

One of my favorite things...  dinners I didn't cook.

A few plans for the rest of the week...  soccer may be over, but the end-of-season parties are this week.  One down, two to go.  Also, piano lesson for Wyatt, books waiting at the library, and ???

Here is a picture I'm sharing...

Did you see the fly?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Thinking About Summer...

I know I mentioned spring in a recent post, but a snake was involved so let's forget about that, shall we?

Ah, summer.  Warm sunny weather and lots of free time, right?  That's what my boys are looking forward to.  And, of course, with all those wonderful unstructured hours to fill, everyone will get along just swell, right? 


Well, if your kids are like mine, they wouldn't dare say they're bored (because I have lots of extra chores that need doing), but they will get antsy and sometimes just a wee little bit testy.  Of course, most of the time I'd rather go to the lake, or work/play in the yard, or stay home and do science experiments, (hey, it's summer, you don't have to write them up!), but when you want to get out of the house, here are a couple of freebies, from me to you.

* Movies *
Regal Cinemas offers a free Family Film Festival every summer.  I'm not much of a movie buff.  Too picky.  Even for free, I wouldn't drive across town to see the Rugrats.  But we might be enticed by Tale of Despereaux, or Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, or even Charlotte's Web.  Especially on a hot day when the AC is appealing :D  You can look up your state and find the schedule by clicking HERE.  Expect lots of little kids (and YMCA Daycare/Daycamps) to be taking advantage of this, making viewing conditions less than ideal.  But hey, free is free.

* Bowling *
I haven't tried this myself, but our friends just tipped us off to this one.  Click HERE to find out about
free bowling in your area.  You have to register with the program, select a bowling alley, and you'll receive email coupons for 2 free games per day, per kid.  Adults can buy a reasonably priced pass to join in, but it doesn't appear to be required.

There ya go.  You're welcome.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Could I Please Have A Boring Day?

Lots going on here and not enough time to write about it.  Maybe tomorrow.  I started to count how many times I have been in and out of the van in the last two or three days and it was a ridiculous amount. (You know, the life of a stay-at-home mom... eyes roll.)

We've been to Gunnar's AWANA Awards Night (mentioned below,) to the usual round of soccer practices, on an amazing field trip which needs a separate post of its own, but here's a teaser...

Photograph by Tate

... and today, we spent six warmish, breezy hours going from soccer game to soccer game (with a picnic!), and we closed out spring soccer.  Amen and Hallelujah.

It has been a long hard slog, this season, in part due to the weather, and then there were other discouraging issues, but the good news is this:

We've been blessed with good coaches, that we like and respect.  And even better...

I am really, really proud of my boys. 

We play soccer for the fun of it.  We have no delusions of grandeur.  We're not destined for the Olympics, the pros, or the elite leagues.  We play because it's fun.  It's exercise.  And it's a great opportunity to learn teamwork, and skills, and sportsmanship.  And because everyone ought to learn how to win and lose graciously.  And because I think that competitiveness is somehow genetically programmed into boys and that's not a bad thing if they can learn to compete honorably.

They've had some hard lessons this year, given that the rest of the world doesn't all play by the same code that we do.  And the boys have done well.  I think Wyatt's team only won one game.  Tate's took third in their division.  And Gunnar's team went undefeated.

And I'm really, really proud of all of them :D

Thursday, May 13, 2010

AWANA Awards Night

I love this time of year as things wind down for summer.  The first thing we've wrapped up is AWANA.  Gunnar just "graduated" from Sparks.  He's finished all three of his books, twice, and - in this photo - is about to receive his trophy.  That means he has memorized over 160 verses, learned the books of the Bible, and completed several projects, hence all the gizmos and gadgets on his vest.  Which is getting much too small, so good thing he's done!

Grampa and Gramma Grasshopper joined us for a special dinner and dessert.  Gunnar got to choose the menu.

Here he is with his trophy and his favorite dessert...
peanut-butter cup brownies!

We're all very proud of you, Gunnar!

Because you asked...

AWANA stands for Approved Workmen Are Not Ashamed (2 Timothy 2:15).

AWANA is a weekly club for kids, hosted by churches, and organized a little bit like scouting.  You can find out more about AWANA, and find a club near you, by clicking HERE, (though most are probably finishing for the summer - as it's usually run along the school year.)

Kids are grouped by age, (preschool, K-2, 3-6, etc.) and work at their own pace through handbooks.  They earn awards by completing activities and memorizing verses - and the main emphasis is on the verses.  I'm sure there will be some variation from church to church, but the program will be basically the same wherever you go.  Each time the club meets they'll have three main activities - a small-group handbook time to say their verses or display their projects to their leader, a larger group gathering (by age) with singing and a short talk (devotion, missionary, etc.), and game time.

For the kids it is fun, fun, fun.  They often come home rather... carbonated, shall I say.  All the boys have loved it, especially at the K-2 age.  They love the theme nights (like crazy hair  and wheelie -dealy, when they all ride their bikes in the parking lot) and the games. 

My kids happen to be really motivated by rewards (even little plastic jewels in a little plastic crown)
so they've been very enthused to learn their verses.
However, they do see beyond the sparkly plastic to the greater good of
hiding God's Word in their hearts,
and that is what we celebrate with them.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I Know It's Spring Because...

Tate brought this home...

... and put it in an aquarium by the back door.

From which it has already escaped.

My desire to weed the flower beds just took a dramatic drop.

BTW, it's a common garter snake.  Not dangerous, just...


Monday, May 10, 2010

Simple Woman #61

For Today...   May 10, 2010

Outside my window...   Wyatt, weed-whacking before we start school.  The white dogwood is now in full bloom and all around both of my windows.  It's like sitting in a cloud.  Currently, a very noisy cloud.

I am thinking...   life isn't fair.  Sometimes the lesson is to let it go and just manage yourself.  And sometimes the lesson is to speak out and confront what is wrong.  And it's not an easy thing to know which, when.

I am thankful for...   a good Mother's Day with family.  And chocolate.  And flowers.  And hugs.  And pizza, since Uncle Dave was hosting.

I am praying for...  this day to improve.

I am wearing...  jeans and a long-sleeve t-shirt.  We've had a few sunny days (hallelujah!) but today is cool again.

I am creating...   I've been working on plans/schedule for next school year.  I like planning.  ;D

I am going...   to get school going, in just a moment.  Moms in Touch later today.

I am reading...  just finished Kinda Christianity.  Still laughing.

I am hearing...   the weed-whacker, someone else doing yard work up the hill behind our house, and robins.

I am remembering...   moving to this house.  My sunny, cheery yellow school-room was once my grandparents' bedroom.  It had black wall-paper with large pink and white roses.  All the woodwork was painted pepto-bismol pink... so pink it took several coats of paint to color it.  And there were heavy lined pink drapes that blocked out most of the light.  Ugh!  The boys were horrified when I told them that would be their bedroom!  At that time we painted most of it a light blue, with white trim and some yellow accents.  They loved it.  Later we remodeled and made it the bright yellow school room.

From the learning rooms...   the Cherokee Trail of Tears, multiplying decimals, Zulu pots, Nat Turner's rebellion, Rudyard Kipling, Frank Lloyd Wright (Kerry will be so pleased), and acids and bases.

From the kitchen...   leftover turkey I cooked on Friday.  Must make turkey pot pies for the freezer!

Around the house...  Tate is probably doing his folder work.  Gunnar is reading The Fellowship of the Ring.  He's finished The Hobbit and is working on the trilogy.  Yes, he's eight.

On my mind...  I wish I had a secretary.  Or better yet, a despachante  (look at the 3rd and 4th paragraph).

Noticing that...  If I do stuff, stuff gets done.  Conversely...

Pondering these words...   Because I said so.

One of my favorite things...  not having anywhere to go.

A few plans for the rest of the week...  this is the last week of soccer.  But, like I said, I'm not counting.  Six more practices and three (possibly four) more games.  On Wednesday we're going to the AWANA awards night to see Gunnar get his trophy.  He's done all the Sparky books twice.  I should count how many verses he has memorized, as well as the books of the Bible and he's done several projects.  We're very proud :D

Here is a picture I am sharing...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Saturday Morning

*  Hallelujah, we have sunshine :D  It was especially welcome today, as we had to be out to the soccer fields around 7:30am.  Three games down, and one to go.  Gunnar's and Tate's teams won, but Wyatt's lost, with one of his players being taken away by ambulance after being kneed in the back by the opposing team.  Kind of put a damper on the morning.

Yesterday went great.  All the boys got along fine - as expected - and our friends did fine with counting their carbs and managing their insulin.  And I tried to keep a close eye on things without being (or making anyone else) neurotic about it.

*  In fact, the most dramatic thing about the day was a thunderstorm in the afternoon that we all had fun watching.  We're not prone to dangerous storms here, so we tend to enjoy the lightning.  And everything here is so wet and green and wet and lush and wet that there's not much danger of forest fire this time of year.

*  Kerry - thank you! - took my package to the post office for me.  I'm restraining myself (just a little bit longer) from showing you photos of a project that I'm just a little bit proud of, until it gets to my friend.

*  And - oh happy day - I have laundry on the line again.  Oooo, maybe I should do the sheets, too.  Just to get that wonderful fresh air smell :D

Friday, May 7, 2010

Random Friday Thoughts

*  At 8:12 this morning all three boys were outside, having a stick war.  Apparently the Trampoplians, tired of being perpetual victims, went on the offensive and mounted a counter-attack against Some-Area.  I have no idea what the outcome was, as I was busy hanging a load of laundry to dry, but no one is crying or bleeding.

*  True to PNW form, the boys are wearing shorts.  Never mind that it's 39F, the sun is shining. 
"Mom.  It's sunny.  We'll be warm enough."  Yah.  And those shorts look great with your fleece jackets and hats.  What can I say.  Fashionistas we ain't.

*  I read a hilarious book yesterday - just published.  Liked it so much I went to the author's website.  Found a grammatical error.  Emailed him to tell him how much I enjoyed the book.  Also mentioned the error on the website.  Because, you know...    As I lay down in bed I realized I had misspelled a name in the email.  Brilliant

*  The boys are asking me what time it is every 3 minutes.  Friends are coming at 9:30 and time has slowed to a glacial pace.  I'm a bit nervous, myself.  The boys that are coming are good friends and all get along well.  They also both have insulin-dependent diabetes and their mom is going out of town for a few hours.  I don't want to screw up.

*  My blog-friend Kristen has a little girl, Ella.  She has a stuffed lamb named... Ollie Baa Baa.

*  Plans for today... keep five boys busy and (relatively) safe, cook turkey, and dig out office.  Again.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Is it Just Me?

I hate junk mail.  Hate it.  Most of it goes right into the recycling.

The credit card applications really irritate me.  So I take the prepaid return envelope, stuff it full of other junk mail, and send it back.


To Put it in Perspective...

Okay, for my local, in-real-life friends - you can skip this.  For my geographically far off blog-world friends...

We have a "Damp Marine Climate".  Heavy on the "damp".  But usually, usually, late April and most of May are lovely.  A real teaser for summer!  Sunshine, warm temps, (warm being a relative term), and melanin-challenged people walking around in shorts and tank tops with goosebumps the size of road turtles.  (Because, you know, we're all chronically low on Vitamin D and need to get recharged as soon as possible.) 

But it's just a teaser.  About the time Memorial Day rolls around, the rain comes back and we won't see much of the sun again until about the 4th of July. 

Then it's summer.  And it goes on well into September.

But this year is not following the pattern.  Not cooperating.

No snow to play in over the winter.  Plenty up in the mountains, but none down here.  The winter was so mild we called it June-uary

But now, when we should be having a lovely spring, we're not.  Snow in the hills, passes closed, and this morning... 37F. 

I'm just wondering what summer will be...

Monday, May 3, 2010

No Kidding

The clouds lifted just enough, right after dinner, to get a look at the hills.  Want to guess what I saw?

Yep.  Snow.

We are supposed to be a temperate climate!  You know, temperate, as in moderated by the ocean.  Yes, we are in the NW corner of the country, (excluding Alaska.)  And - yes, I can read a topographical map - my house is about 380' above sea level.  We've had ZERO "playable" snow all winter.  Much to the boys' dismay.  But I can see snow right now, down pretty close to 1000'.

In fact, the North Cascades Highway, which had just been cleared for the spring, and reopened... has just been closed again.  Not that I'm going anywhere.

Of course, all the boys have soccer practice tomorrow.

Right now, 45F and raining.  It must be the global warming.

Fun times!  *eyes roll*

Simple Woman #60

For today...  May 3, 2010

Outside my window...  my computer is upstairs in a corner room, with windows on two sides.  Outside, the white dogwood is beginning to bloom, filling both windows with creamy blossoms.  It's kind of like sitting in a cloud.  

I am thinking...  HA HA HA!  Yes, it is beautiful, but it is also 47F/8C.  It looks like spring.  It smells like spring.  But it's October, in sheep's clothing.  Blowing and raining buckets most of the night.

I am thankful for...  well the good thing is that the boys don't really have 'spring fever' yet.

I am praying for...  more work for Kerry.

I am wearing...  winter clothes, people.  

I am creating...  plans, plans, plans.  We are coming down the homestretch in our school year.  (Don't tell the boys - I don't think they realize, yet.)  They had a PTO Day on Friday and I spent the whole day figuring out what we really need to do to finish this year, and then mapping out next year.  Woo-hoo!

I am going...  hoping to stay home all day :D

I am hoping...  for warmer weather.  Pllleeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaasssssssseeeee.

I am hearing...  quiet.  Blessed quiet.  The boys are reading and the wind and rain have died down.  But all of that is temporary, I'm sure.

I am remembering...  sunshine.  I know I've seen it.  (/sarcasm)

From the learning rooms...  Abolition, symmetry, prepositional phrases, place value to trillions, (no, we're not studying the national debt... though you may find this interesting), division, and maybe a pinata.

Around the house...  books.  Piles of books.  And some more books.

On my mind...  Gunnar, who is EIGHT, mind you, had decided to read The Lord of the Rings.  I wasn't sure he could do it.  Well, I know he could, but would he enjoy it?  So I suggested he start with The Hobbit and then re-evaluate.  He's finished that and is about a third of the way through The Fellowship of the Ring.  I'm impressed.

Noticing that...  Wyatt is having a very difficult soccer season.  He's on a combined U13/14 team, and his division didn't have enough kids for a U12 team, so there are a few of those boys as well, playing up.  Which means they have a very young team.  And most of the boys are fairly small.  And they're playing against giants.  Sometimes the other teams are a full foot or more taller than our boys.

We've lost every game but one.  And Wyatt is handling it.

So this is progress.

Pondering these words...  Philippians 2:14-15

One of my favorite things...  babies with bubble-cheeks.

A few plans for the rest of the week...  soccer, piano, soccer, AWANA, soccer, the library, soccer....

Here is a picture I am sharing...


Saturday, May 1, 2010

I'm Excited!

Going here for a week in August...
... a vacation rental, in Lincoln City, OR.

And here for a week in September...
... Lincoln Rock State Park, WA.  (Near Wenatchee.)

And, for the record, we will vacation at places that are not named "Lincoln".
This is just a happy coincidence.