Showing posts from May, 2006

The life and times of a SAHM...

Why is it that sewing a black cassok is unbelievably tedious and boring, when other sewing I find to be fun? Every single cassok I have done has been brutal torture. Blech. I'm getting closer to being done, though....closer, but not done yet. At least this time I can SEE what I'm doing, thanks to my nifty thrifty reading/sewing glasses. I can't even see the warp of the fabric without them.

And in other news...after sewing all morning, I laid around at the pool, again. Had the good sense to leave by mid afternoon, and just a few minutes after we got home it started to thunder. Eventually I saw my first hail: marble sized hail. Glad it wasn't bigger, so no damage to our car. It's still storming out.

Other than that, I've been a lazy bum today. Folded laundry, taught one of the kids the fine art of loading the dishwasher, and read an interesting book that was different from my usual fare.

My tan is coming along nicely.

At the pool today, mostly I wis…

The Pool is Open, the Weather's Hot

We always buy a pool pass for our family. It's only one-fifty for all of us for the summer. If I were to pay for me and the four kids to go to the pool once with cash, it would cost sixteen dollars. SIXTEEN. HOW, I wonder, do I see all the same folks at the pool every day, and no one has pool passes except for us? I think that some folks don't know math. Or maybe they don't have a pile of kids. But even with one grown up and two kids it would still ten bucks. So if you go fifteen times it will have paid for itself. The pool season goes from memorial day until labor day, so it seems like it still would be more economical for most people to buy the passes.

At any rate, with the pool one block away, this is the deal of the summer if you ask me. It also gives me clout: as in, we aren't going if you don't do xyz (mostly clean your I really don't think an almost eight year old needs my help doing that, KWIM???

And I bought this r…

Learning Something New

I decided that instead of constantly gorging myself on escapist literature this summer, I would use some of my down time to learn something new. So yesterday I tackled learning how to crochet roses using a 100 year old pattern. That worked, I used fat cotton yarn and a big hook, so the thing was gigantic, but now that I know how to read that pattern I think I can do it way scaled down. It was a piece from a dress yoke and it's called irish crochet...has sort of an irregular pattern of loops and picots connecting various leaf, rose and clover motifs. I get crazy about stuff like that, as long as it's done in natural fibers and is very fine. I'd love to be able to make that sort of thing.

I also want to learn how to crochet blocks. That book has some very cool sweaters and stuff done in blocks, which technically I can do, I just need to try it and see the results.


Will I sleep in tomorrow or get up at the crack of dawn and let the kids sleep in while I enjoy a soon-to-be rare snatch of quiet?????

THAT is the question!

Last day of school and my kids cleaned UP at the awards ceremony. Yay! I"m so proud. Oh, my aching bones though...two awards ceremonies on horrid folding chairs...back to back. At least I got to work out all the kinks taking a nice long walk, though.

And I have not thought one single profound thought today.

Ain't no cure for the summer time blues, doing dee dee doing dee dee doing...

It was one of those mornings around here when my son could not find his shoes, the living room is inundated with piles of art work from the kids' exploits yesterday and heaps of laundry waiting to be folded. At least it is clean! And so it was a little more difficult than ideal to get the kids out the door this morning. But we managed. After spending about a half an hour hunting for ds' sneaker and yelling at him to help me look, dd1 found it in a trice. She's my hero. Hunting for sneakers is the bane of my life, and leaves me tired like very little else. I think it has to do with the STRESS of the process. Right now typing is even hard and there's a good chance I'll skip my morning walk...or shorten it.

I feel so driven to loose these last twenty, and I don't fully comprehend WHY that is the case. It seems like a physical impossibility for them to linger forever, considering the disciplines I am engaging in and the lifestyle changes I have embraced. …

swim suit shopping (oh the horror!)

So, me and the three girls went swim suit shopping this evening. Like I said: Oh, the horror! But, I felt like it would be good for us to find appropriate swim attire for the coming season since last year's suits no longer quite are the thing.

Off to wallyland in pursuit of the american dream: swim wear magic that will erase the wear and tear of four babies, NOT coordinate with the color of my varicose veins (heard on this trip: "Hey mom, on the back of your leg, it looks like it's going to burst open!"--"Gee thanks kid, I"ll be sure to aim it in your direction when it does!"), and lift that which sags, cover that which bulges, and oh, so much more: look cute and fashionable to boot?

Ain't gonna happen. Brown is a popular color this season and I was hoping for something Marilynesque in brown. HAHAHAHAHA! OK, now that we've gotten over that particular fanasy, reality sets in.

Uuuuuuugly: here's the definition. Size XL with giant p…

Meme's the word

Tag, you are it!

I am...tired and I should be sleeping.
I get up and use the bathroom.
I wish...that I knew then what I know now.
I hate...the fact that so many people are debilitated due to lack of good health care or the ability to pay for it.
I husband and kids.
I husband when he works late.
I fear...heights.
I hear...the furnace blowing and the computer humming.
I wonder...what it would be like to be someone else.
I regret...too much to mention.
I am not good...focusing on one thing.
I dance...not at all.
I sing...whenver I feel like it.
I cry...when I'm overtired and PMSing.
I am not always...happy.
I make...other people laugh.
I my blog and my journal.
I kids.
I pee.
I should...obsess about my weight less.
I start...craft projects.
I finish...reading books.


There's something about standing in my kitchen, moving back and forth between the countertop, the stove, the fridge and the trash from scratch, that makes me feel very grounded. I spend a good amount of energy each week doing just that, since my diet forces me to do so, and now it's gone to a new level of necessity, even, what with the nut situation. Grounded. All the basic ingredients lined up in a row, and me, having done my research, casting the recipe books aside just to cook.

This is how I do it, you know. I spend a few hours on the comptuer, reading recipes. I look for common themes. I look for nuances. I look for consistency and differences. Then I look at my knowledge bank of food substitutions, and my awareness of what each ingredient DOES in a dish, and what I have in my pantry or fridge and I make plans. I might even jot down a few notes, ideas, scratches. But by the time I enter my kitchen, it's just me and the food and the tools.


Gone Nuts!

I've officially become one of those epi-pen wielding people with peanut and nut allergies who has to call restaurants in advance to check on ingredients, who has to screen all foods before eating them, packs her own sack lunches wherever she goes, and who keeps peanuts and other nuts out of her house and her husband's teeth, who cooks most things from scratch and reads labels voraciously.(Not that I didn't already do that for sugar and other ingredients, but now I officially have another layer added to my culinary sleuthing FUN!!!) My best "duh!" moment of the day was when I so brilliantly said: "You mean, if I eat pecans and it scalds my mouth, that's a NUT ALLERGY?????"...oh, the priceless look on the nurse's face when I said that.

Ah yes, and when the allergist found out there's a family history of heart disease, he was VERY interested in seeing me loose the last twenty pounds (his eyes about popped out of his head when I told him I'…


Someone on a chat board I like to read asked the question: How do we integrate our Christianity into our whole life? Or, how do we live integrated Christian lives? What does that look like?

People waxed eloquent. Lemme tell ya.

I did not answer that thread but one thing did come to mind:

Mowing the grass, with a klunker lawn mower that needs it's carburator adjusted, already tired, but wanting to get this chore done, smelling like the gasoline that I spilled on my hands and breathing in nasty faith becomes integrated when this event is a call to prayer and I actually pray, rather than fuming, griping and complaining to myself.

Victory indeed!

Give us this day our daily bread. ..

So our church is now participating in a new ministry, and that is distributing bread. Panera bread company just opened a new store in the town where our church is, and they notified the churches that they give out the day old bread for distribution to the needy. We signed up to be one of the receiving churches, and the poor guy who is in charge said he went to get the bread and it just kept coming, and coming and coming.

Yesterday when we got to Church there was a HUGE mound of bread for us to deal with. Bagels, Foccacia, Baguettes, Loaves, sweet buns, more bagels....loads of it.

More than will usually be I think because they are still in practice mode at the bakery. Wow. So at least for yesterday, we ALL took enough to fill our freezers and there was so much left over I think B was panicked.

So now our freezer is so full of this delicious bread that I will have to absolutely control myself over and NOT EAT (flexing the self control muscles...what a concept!) but we also have…

I can't stand it

I don't fit in anywhere. I have no friends in this town and I hardly ever get to see the friends I do have who live half an hour away. Please, no advice about finding friends in this town. Please. It's not them, it's me. I. Just. Don't. Fit. I don't think I'm a very nice person.
Don't fit on the net either. Everyone seems to have a cozy place to be, chat boards, etc. But not me. I just don't fit.
I don't fit
I don't fit
I don't fit
this blog post is stupid and I don't fit.

blech. I"m posting it anyways. We can't all be farting sunshine and roses all the time now can we?

Wet Trees

Walking in the rain,
wet trees, verdant
in the cool moist air,
my canopy.
Best underfoot is grass
but the sidewalk must suffice
in the city
and I'll make do
as usual
with the green I can get.

Irises drink in the rain
and send up
fragrant offerings
of childhood memories
in our flowergarden
when I was six
which I'd forgotten until
yesterday's walk
when I stopped to breathe them in.

That reminds me of
currents, raspberries, pears,
and roses,
and always of cool wet air
loved best when walking:
my favorite kind
for breathing deep
under wet trees.

Orthodox Church

in the news over the Davinci Code

Free Range Breast Milk...

...and more good laughs. Seriously, you must read this:

Very funny and true bit of insight into the world of parenting

On a happier note...

Thirty six down and only twenty to go!!!!!!

And then I want a t-shirt that says:

American Obesity Epidemic Survivor

Now I'm off to walk before the rain comes.

Update: It rained. I got wet.

Stink! Stank! Stunk!

Just in time from Uncle Sam we got our refund and spent some but not all. What must we do with the rest AND all extra from the next over-time paycheck???? REPLACE OUR STINKIN' WATER LINE THAT SPRANG A LEAK!!!!!

...deep cleansing's just's just money....this too shall pass....

Note to self: we need a bigger emergency fund.

Since I"m talking about movies...

Here's my list that I own so far that I consider worthy of re-watching multiple times:

Lady Hawke
Pride and Prejudice (BBC)
Pride and Prejudice (new version)
Sense and Sensibility (Emma Thompson)
Gosford Park (I love the "below stairs" side to this story)
Ever After
Wedding Singer
Top Gun
Sleepless in Seattle
Princess Bride
Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon
What Women Want

Want to acquire for repeat viewing purposes:

All the Rocky movies
Hunt for Red October
any other Submarine Movie (I have a THING for sub movies. What's that all about????)
Emma (BBC version)
You've Got Mail
Monsoon Wedding (if you have not seen it, seriously, do so!)
Indiana Jones stuff
Robin Hood (the one with what's his name, was it Kevin Costner?)
The Patriot (horrid battle scenes, but my ancestors fought and lived through that stuff so I feel humble and proud).
50 first Dates
Never Been Kissed
Bourne Identity (it makes me crazy watching them drive around europe like that.)

Fave Flicks

Re-watching the Rocky movies. I love them! I hardly remember anything from when I watched them in High School and I'm having a great time with these films. I really like how Rocky's Christian faith is made an integral part of the story line, asking for a blessing from his priest before the big fight, praying in the corner, wearing his cross, going to the chapel in the hospital when visiting hours are over, and promising to buy a statue for his church with his prize money. And I love his devotion to his wife, and how he shields her from her jerky abusive brother.

My favorite line from Rocky II is something to the effect of "I won't ever ask you to stop being a woman, so please don't ask me to stop being the man."

These movies make me smile. Right up there with Pride and Prejudice and You've Got Mail...happy sigh.


Twice in one day...but when I think of all my own sins, how can I do anything but forgive, forgive, forgive? God help me at this!

Out to Lunch

with my sister at the mall, where I bought ridiculous metallic colored platform heels that make me look taller than a drag queen. She says I don't look like a drag queen, though, since I don't have an adam's apple. I'm so relieved.

Coming off caffeine and I have a headache. I want ice cream, but think I'll settle for a diet rite soda instead. It's all about choices, and making smart ones. Yeah yeah, so sue me, water would be better. That sounds like song lyrics. Maybe I should play around on my guitar with it for a few minutes and see if something comes of it...or maybe not.

Did I mention I have a headache?

Ten years ago today I had an emergency C-section, crazy car ride to the hospital homebirth gone wrong kind of day...and there was a tornado that day, too, so after the surgery I and my baby were wheeled into the hallway to wait out the storm. I gave my daughter a bike today, so all turned out well for her birth. She was a big baby: 11 pounds, 10.…

This was cool!

Here's a link to a writing exercisethat I very much enjoyed. I actually worked on this and did not just spit it out rapidly like I do too many things.

by me

I am from old lace, from vibrating guitar strings and a hand stitched bag made in third grade.

I am from the green door framed white house, crumbling, sagging porch, the smell of clean laundry that assails me by the dryer vent in the lush back yard after a rain.

I am from the honeysuckle, wild violets, compost heap, the growing grass, dandelions (not a weed to me!) and old leaves from last fall.

I am from midnight pascha and quiet after a trip to the library, from Opal and Doris and Barbara.

I am from feasting and puns.

I am from preachin’ and theologizing and judgement and righteousness.

I am from baptized in the Rhine, prayer ropes and icons, I am from ancient oils and canted prayers.

I am from Germany and England and Cherokee, Swiss bread, coffee, diet coke and rose hip tea.

I am from memories of those Jura mountains wher…

Scorning the general population

Yes, that's right. I am SEVERELY lacking in love. I just don't like the folks in my neighborhood very much. Many are loud, many are less intelligent than I am, less educated than I am, many are poor, they all talk with obnoxious accents and very poor grammar, many many many are ugly, and most are fat and in poor health due to lifestyle choices (but then again, so am I). So, there you have it: My prejudices, issues, and shames, all rolled into one.

And yet...there's this whispering in my ear that asks me: If you went overseas to be a missionary, and landed in a place just like this, with people just like this, what would you do?

What would I do? What will I do? How shall I then be HERE?

Oh God, oh God, oh God have mercy on me a sinner!

Fun Stuff

Reading glasses: Got 'em!

I like being able to look at the computer screen without so much eye strain, but the whole process is going to take some getting used to: switching them out, remembering to wear them, etc.

Tomorrow I will re-arrange my living room. We picked up some chairs at our favorite furniture store (thrift store) this evening. One comfy wingback for my dh and a nice maple wooden one for at my desk. Good times had by all.

Someone at church GAVE me her old wedding now that I have glasses, I will sit down and stitch by stitch remove the beaded alencon lace there-from. Perhaps there will be enough white satin salvageable for an infant's baptismal gown afterwards, too.

Also scored three disney movies at the Thrift store this afternoon: Peter Pan, Rescuers, and Snow White. Definitely worth three bucks apiece.

Incensed at the vicissitudes of being middle aged...

So, lately my vision has been vexing me. Today I went to the eye doc, AFTER going in for my sixmonthly teeth cleaning/tartar chiseling event. Lo and behold, I am now the owner of reading glasses as well as a new and stronger scrip for distance vision. I could have gotten them in a BIFOCAL format, but since I do sewing and reading for long stretches of time, the eyedoctor said he'd recommend a full lense of each. Usually people don't get to this point with their vision before the age of forty, he said, but thirty six isn't too far out of range. Oh, great. Just what I needed.

So, I got some cute green plastic frames for the reading glasses and some cute slightly glamorous (let me have my fantasy!!!) metal frames for "regular/distance" vision. Now I will be one of those middle aged women with glasses on a chain around her neck, because that is the only way I will EVER keep track of them.

Then, to make matters worse, I decided this would be a good day to chec…

Go Immigrants!

As in, rah rah rah, sis boom bah! As in, cheering them on.

After all, we are ALL immigrants. AND, who are we kidding, our country is very very economically dependant on illegal immigrant labor, so lets do the right thing and give them a big fat thank you called amnesty.

THEN, if we really think it's an issue, we can put our national money where our mouths are and spend muchos dineros on sealing our borders and expensive fruits and vegetables that are no longer harvested by dirt cheap labor.

Are we willing? I doubt it. We americanos are too complacent.

So, a big fat bienvenidos to all my fellow americans who hail from south of the border.