Friday, December 19, 2008

On sale at a museum near you . . .

Guess what? I have some of my knitted/felted things (pictured below in a previous post) on sale at a museum near you, if you live in Newton or North Newton! How cool is that? I also have some of my wishing jars that I blogged about last summer there too. They almost sold out so I made more last night! Wow. I don't think any of my knitted things have sold yet, but I did sell two of my knitted/felted projects to friends on my own. Pretty exciting!

Also, in the time since my last post, school has ended for the holidays (woooohoooo), we hit a deer and totaled our van, we've mostly completed the process to have a new(er) van, and we've gone to lots of concerts, programs, basketball games, etc. Life is full and I am thankful for all the blessings in my life, although some days do feel like trials.

The words that have stuck with me in recent weeks were uttered during a worship service recently. They weren't the main topic or anything, but they were the ones that resonated for me and I try to repeat them, to myself and those I love . . .

Let us rejoice in the blessings we have received.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Someday at Christmas

Someday at Christmas men won't be boys
Playing with bombs like kids play with toys
One warm December our hearts will see
A world where men are free

Someday at Christmas there'll be no wars
When we have learned what Christmas is for
When we have found what life's really worth
There'll be peace on earth

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime

Someday at Christmas we'll see a land
with no hungry children, no empty hands
One happy morning people will share
a world where people care

Someday at Christmas there'll be no tears
All men are equal and no man has fears
One shining moment, one prayer away
From our world today

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime

Someday at Christmas man will not fail
hate would be gone and love will prevail
Someday a new world that we can start
With hope in every heart

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime
Someday at Christmastime

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Knitting Frenzy

The last two weeks I can't stop knitting and felting . . .

I'm in a frenzy. I can't stop. The good -- using up yarn I've collected. The bad -- my house is a mess! But I'm calm (and happy :)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Georgia on my mind

My lady Georgia, that's what my high school art teacher called her. She's the one who got me hooked on Georgia. Georgia O'Keefe. My all time favorite, wish I could have met her, artist. She's the one this blog is named after.

The painting From the faraway nearby can be seen here. My favorite vacation spot, so far, is New Mexico and one of my favorite vacations was a first anniversary trip there. We rented a (rustic) cabin in Red River for a week or so and did day trips all around the northern part of the state. We did things like rent a jeep and go 4-wheelin', visited Bandelier National Monument, I read lots sitting on the porch swing while Everett went fishing. Then I bought a Georgia O'Keefe guidebook of sorts and we travelled all around her "stomping grounds" in northern New Mexico. We had the best indian tacos in a little hole in the wall on a deserted stretch of highway near Abiquiu. And we went to the Lawrence ranch (D.H.) where she spent lots of time when she was in the area. I laid under the tree she used as her muse for this painting, The Lawrence TreeThere's a bench under the tree which, they say, she laid on to gain her perspective. I laid on it and took this pictureAs an art teacher "wannabe" this was an experience that I carry with me and look forward to sharing with my students some day. What can we do to get an unusual perspective on something we see every day? How does it change how we see something when we look at it froma different view? Hey, these things could have a kind of profound impact on other daily activities too. Hmmmmmm, I need to ponder that some more. I've been feeling pretty intolerant and angry lately, just ask my co-workers :)

Oh, and I almost forgot, her birthday was November 15. She would have been 111 this year :)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

On taking offense

I belong to an e-mail group of people I graduated from high school with. This week, there was much and varied election discussion. I'm all for people not agreeing and not being happy, or being very happy, with who wins an election. This year's presidential election brought out many strong feelings on both ends of the spectrum. After one e-mail tirade (about how Obama is going to take away our civil rights AND all our money), one of the listee's went on to say something like, "is it just me, or does Obama look like BJ Armstrong?" I don't even know who BJ Armstrong is. But then someone sent another e-mail with their pictures side by side. What do you think?

I'll be the first to admit that maybe I have some baggage related to issues of race. But, for the life of me, I don't really see any resemblance except for (sorta) their skin color. They both are brownish, although completely different shades of brown. Their eye, mouth and face shapes are totally different. I took offense and responded saying besides the fact that they're both African American I didn't see any similarity. Discussion on the e-mail list skidded to a complete halt. Nothing else was said about it.

So my question is, what I over-reacting? All I heard in my head was "they all look alike" and all the racism, overt and otherwise, that goes along with that. I won't apologize for being touchy about issues like this. The people I love the most are very affected by these things in ways I can only imagine. I've never been followed around in a store like the shop-keeper thinks I'm going to steal something, but I've been with my husband when it's happened to him. And I know that's just a tip of the iceberg.

I feel such hope for the future of my children and ALL children, that our country was able to rise above superficial issues like race in last week's election. But there's a long road ahead.

A brave new world requires a brave new mind.
Author Unknown
But Greatly Appreciated!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Let us turn our thoughts . . .

I'm so overwhelmed with feelings this week. In true Mary Catherine Gallager fashion, my feelings could best be expressed, not by dialogue from a play or movie, but with song lyrics (James Taylor song lyrics - Shed a little light).

Let us turn our thoughts today
To Martin Luther King
And recognize that there are ties between us
All men and women
Living on the Earth
Ties of hope and love
Sister and brotherhood
That we are bound together
In our desire to see the world become
A place in which our children

Can grow free and strong
We are bound together
By the task that stands before us
And the road that lies ahead
We are bound and we are bound

There is a feeling like the clenching of a fist
There is a hunger in the center of the chest
There is a passage through the darkness and the mist
And though the body sleeps the heart will never rest

Shed a little light, oh Lord
So that we can see
Just a little light, oh Lord
Wanna stand it on up
Stand it on up, oh Lord
Wanna walk it on down
Shed a little light, oh Lord

Can't get no light from the dollar bill
Don't give me no light from a TV screen
When I open my eyes
I wanna drink my fill
From the well on the hill

(Do you know what I mean?)
- Chorus -

There is a feeling like the clenching of a fist
There is a hunger in the center of the chest
There is a passage through the darkness and the mist
And though the body sleeps the heart will never rest

Oh, Let us turn our thoughts today
To Martin Luther King
And recognize that there are ties between us
All men and women
Living on the Earth
Ties of hope and love
Sister and brotherhood

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The sacred art of dish-washing

I've been knitting these dishcloths like crazy. I love the pattern. And the colors. It's called a ball-band dishcloth and it's from the book Mason-Dixon knitting. I got the book for my birthday but the pattern is available in several places online too. It looks and sounds complicated at first but it's really not hard if you can knit and purl.

I started knitting them as a project for the prayer shawl knitting group at our church. We started out knitting shawls, kind of based on a concept you can read about at this site.

Later we moved into knitting prayer cloths, 12"x12" cloths that are carried in each Sunday morning and set underneath an oil lamp as part of the worship center and our worship centering. I started knitting one of these dishcloths thinking it would be a nice pattern for a prayer cloth.

Then I started giving them to people to use as dishclothes, which is what the pattern says it is. Then I started thinking about washing dishes.

I read Kathleen Norris' book The Quotidian Mysteries: Laundry, Liturgy and "Women's Work". I don't remember all that many specifics about the book, it's been several years since I read it, but the basis is that the daily tasks of life are sacred. That resonated with me, although some days I have a tough time finding the sacred in some of my daily tasks.

Recently I've gotten to the point where washing dishes is a stressful, kind of angry time. I get frustrated that no one else thinks about doing the dishes, or washing the table, or wiping off the counter. It's a downward spiral from there, and I often end up slamming cupboard doors and banging pots and plates and silverware loudly. I decided about a month ago that I was going to try to not get angry and just try to stay on top of the one task of dishwashing.

Then I discovered this pattern. While I was knitting these I started wondering "what if I knit dishclothes prayerfully, for myself and for others . . . how would that affect the art dishwashing as a sacred experience?".

So pretty much everyone on my Christmas list is going to get prayerfully knit dishcloths and, if time allows, some home-made dishwashing soap. I'm really re-motivated by this to try to find the sacred and focus on mindfulness in all that I do. Let me know if you'd like to receive one OR if you'd like to learn to knit your own.

When we walk like (we are running), we print anxiety and sorrow on the earth. We have to walk in a way that we only print peace and serenity on the earth... Be aware of the contact between your feet and the earth. Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet.
~Thich Nhat Hanh

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thoughtful Thursday

Life has been busy lately. I have a couple of posts percolating but just can't seem to find the time to actually post them. Maybe this weekend. I even have titles already :) Autumn always makes me nostalgic and melancholy. Maybe because the trees are so beautiful but I know that soon all the leaves will have fallen and they will look bare and stark. Beautiful, too, but not like the flaming leaves of autumn. So, I'll leave today with this photograph from last weekend and Camp Mennoscah, and the words (and music I hope to add later) of a favorite Beatles song.

There are places I remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever, not for better
Some have gone and some remain

All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I've loved them all
But of all these friends and lovers
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new

Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more
Though I remember I’ll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I’ll often stop and think about them
In my life I’ll love you more
In my life I’ll love you more

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Happy Campers

We made it to our camping destination last weekend. It was incredible. Beautiful weather, great family times, great park, wonderful campfire food, hiking, open air showers (meaning no roof over the showers -- freaked the kids out at first but then they kinda liked it). We also ate out once each day . . . my kinda camping :)

It was really great. We camped at Clinton Lake just outside of Lawrence. For all our pics go to my flickr site
And in knitting news, here is my latest obsession. It's knit with cotton yarn and it's called the ballband dishcloth. I love it. I'm working on my third since last week.

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's my bag, man

Last summer I posted here about a pattern I found for making a tote bag by crocheting cut up plastic sacks from the grocery store. Emma and I made our plastic yarn and I tried crocheting with it. Ewwww. It was awful to crochet with, so I finally decided to make up my own pattern and knit a bag. I haven't written my pattern up yet, but when I do I'll post it here. It was really fun to knit with but awful to crochet with. Being a connoisseur of plastic bags now, I can also make recommendations as to which bags are the best to knit with! For now, for your viewing pleasure, I present . . .

And it's so much fun to carry it! People can't believe it's plastic until they touch it!

Saturday, September 27, 2008


I've been cleaning in my kitchen this morning. I thought about posting about how ticked off it made me and griping about people in my family not doing their part, but . . .it's a slippery slope. Once I start, I might not stop. Not good for me or anyone else, so I decided to do something else before I go back to more cleaning. I was planning to post on the groovy kind of love (note the song playing on my sidebar) my husband and I have, but as you can probably imagine, I'm not feeling all that groovy about it at the moment, so I'll wait on that one :) Still love him, just not in a groovy-like way right now.

I was making pizza last night, and above you see a photo of my crust awaiting toppings. Yes, those are cat footprints. Naughty kitty. Yes, I went ahead and made the pizza on it. No one but Emma and I the wiser. And it tasted great. Any icky stuff baked out I'm sure. It made me laugh out loud though, when I went into the kitchen and saw those perfect paw prints in the crust.

Life is good (pawsitively good).

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Hippie Kind of Peace

Meg posted her redone bathroom a while back. (do you need to get people's permission to link to their blog???) It's beautiful :) She had a mirror with "Peace" across the top. Her husband wanted her to be sure to tell everyone she didn't mean the hippie kind of peace. I commented that I'm kinda partial the hippie kind of peace myself (by the way, Sunday is the International Day of Peace. . .check out and make a pinwheel, or something else that inspires you, for peace). The clay covered bottle in the photo above made me think of the hippie kind of peace when we made it, and check out my brother's recent tie-dye! He sells them at Clayworks downtown, if you're local. He's kind of a hippie too, so it could be gen-u-ine hippie tie-dye!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

9 years ago

9 years ago, just about now, I was holding this newborn baby girl in my arms. She was born at 10:45 p.m., just a little over an hour after we arrived at the hospital! I wasn't sure I was really in labor as I had never gone into labor naturally before. Hard to believe 9 years have gone by. We had a lovely day. Mostly we hung around home and took it easy. Late afternoon we went out to the country and picked apples. The day ended with me telling her the story of the day she was born as I tucked her in. She was such a sweet surprise for my 40th birthday. She was born almost exactly one month before I turned 40. Guess I'm giving my age away aren't I?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Just what I needed

Today, like every other day,
we may wake up empty or frightened.
Don't open the door to the study and begin reading.
Take down a musical instrument.
Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
~Jalal ad-Din Rumi

Maybe I should just leave it at that. Toilet overflowed twice last night (leaked down into the basement). But, I hated (such a strong word) the bathroom carpet and now it's gone!!! I overslept this morning, my computer blue screened on start up, and my head and neck hurt. Then, let's see, it was Bible school day so that was chaotic, plus on Tuesdays I sub during the lunch hour, so things at work were pretty crazy. But, here's what I found. People ask when you get to work "how are you" and I found myself saying either "fine" or even "good". Well, I thought to myself, I guess I'm pretty good. I could be better, but then again, it could be worse. That helped me keep a more positive outlook. But my head and neck still hurt, and I was tired (whine, whine). Then I got this quote in an e-mail. I get daily inspirations from inspiration peak. It was just what I needed today. I hope I wake up tomorrow and do just that, at least in my head and heart. Finding new ways to kneel and kiss the ground.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Can't we all just get along?

Oh, the joy of my Saturday, grocery shopping. I do a lot of my grocery shopping at Walmart. I know, most people think it's a really evil place (but still shop there*). I agree it may be evil, although I've not done any research into their evil practices, and I'm not convinced that Kroeger (who own Dillons) have any better practices or ethics. Anyway, the shopping experience at Walmart, especially on the weekend, is less than appealing. I would LOVE to do more of my shopping at other stores, and I've been shopping more at Prairie Harvest since summer, but my budget just won't allow me to do all of my grocery shopping there. And the PH shopping experience . . . wonderful, soothing even. Anyway, in my shopping I observed soooo many grouchy, unhappy people. I generally smile and try to make eye contact with those I meet in the aisles. Today, people, for the most part, were having nothing of it (although I did see a few friendly faces and appreciated them immensely :). People were downright crabby and even mean. One guy pushed his cart right up to mine while I was stopped to get an item off the shelf and just stood there glaring . . .like, get out of my way. I saw the same guy later muttering loudly about people stopping and talking in the aisles. I guess I kind of look at it like driving, just because one person might be rushed or in a hurry, that doesn't mean everyone has to be, right??? And it made me think. Peace is HARD. It's hard to be peaceful in our own homes sometimes, at least it is in mine. And it's hard where we work. And it's hard at the grocery store. But I have to hope that little things make a difference. I know it made a difference to me today when someone smiled. It would have been easy to join into the crabby, grouchy, unhappiness around me and maybe that's what happens when things fall apart and violence erupts. It's contagious. Today I chose to let the smile be contageous.

* I really admire people who believe something strongly, like Walmart is an evil place, and then show their belief by not supporting something, like Walmart. I have trouble sometimes when people go on and on about how evil a place is, but still shop there :) Hmmm, maybe this is grist for another post!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Ummmm yeah

We do have an electric guitar in our house now (but no amp yet hehehe). And a "girl band" in the making. Aunt Debbie took them birthday/school shopping but Ellie had no need for clothes or shoes. All she wanted was an electric guitar.

We spent the weekend in Lawrence. What a fun town. Next time I want to stay at the Eldridge downtown.
You don't need to get anyone else to agree with your truth. You just need to live it.
Alan Cohen
And to follow up on my previous post about kindness. I have been doing acts of kindness but not always feeling all that kind about it. It's a struggle. I appreciate the thoughts shared in comments and would like to continue thinking and talking with folks about it. I find that I usually end up feeling more kind as I carry out the act, but the working up to it is what I find most challenging. You might have guessed I have a certain situation in my life right now drawing on my "kindness" tap. It helps to hear other perspectives so again, thanks!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Question of the day

(I received one of these bracelets Sunday. Click on the picture to read more about the MLC world bracelet program.)

If you do a kind act, but your heart is not feeling kindness, does it negate the kind act?? I'd really like to hear your thoughts on this.

The wonder of the things we take for granted . . .

I've been thinking lately of the things I take for granted and don't take time to be thankful for. I came upon this as I was drinking my coffee this morning and it hit home. But there's more. As I said before, being at the heart clinic last week hit me hard as I thought about the daily things I take for granted: my health, my kids health, my ability to breath without even thinking, my heart beating an even, steady rhythm just like it's supposed to without any help, the water coming in through the pipes in my house, lights coming on when I flick a switch. It could go on and on.

A few years ago, before we made our inter-generational home, we had a water leak at our house. Our water had to be shut off for 3 days to avoid more waste and also more huge water bills. It made me realize how for granted I take clean, at-the-ready water in my life. We had somewhere to stay where we could have running water, but it made me think about those who don't have that option. Those locally who have their water shut off and have no where to go stay. Those around the world who have no clean water, let alone running water.

I also have a friend who lost a baby at the end of pregnancy. I know she continues to have days that are hard, and although I know I can't really understand what she's feeling, I suffered early pregnancy loss so feel I can relate somehow. And I remember the realization that pregnancy was one thing I would never again take for granted, although early in my first pregnancy I did.

I guess suffering, hurting, feeling loss or potential loss helps me not take things so for granted. So, I hope today, and every day, I can remember to think about things that I take for granted, to take time to be thankful for those things, and to, hopefully, reach out to someone for whom those things I take for granted might be a struggle.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Good News!

Emma's cardiology appointment was today and after and ekg and an echo, plus checking over by a nurse practitioner and the pediatric cardiologist, they cleared her for all physical activity. The doc said if you pulled ten 14 year olds off the street, 4-5 of them would have a heart murmur and that in itself isn't cause for concern. He said our doctor should listen to it when she goes in for checkups but that's it. Whew. What a relief. I almost cried when he told us. It was very humbling too, because while there we saw a variety of people checking in for appointments; older folks, pregnant women, young children and even babies. It reminded me how blessed we are when our children, and we, are physically (and mentally) healthy and that we should never take it for granted. Good reminders. Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers sent our way!

Friday, August 15, 2008

I can't get no . . . no no no

One day some people came to the master
and asked: How can you be happy
in a world of such impermanence,
where you cannot protect your loved ones
from harm, illness or death?
The master held up a glass and said:
Someone gave me this glass;
It holds my water admirably
and it glistens in the sunlight.
I touch it and it rings!
One day the wind
may blow it off the shelf,or my elbow
may knock it from the table.
I know this glass is already broken,
so I enjoy it -- incredibly.
~Achaan Chah Subato

Wow. I am just ending my evening so frustrated with my kids. The evening went fairly well early on and so they had a "girls night" in our living room while grandma and I watched the olympics in hers. The only rules: no yelling, no fighting, clean up your mess. Well, I had to intervene. Not one, not two, not three, but four times. Then, when I told them it was time to clean up, they started bickering, yelling and slamming doors. I told them to clean up and go straight to bed. Immediately, the two who had been bickering loudly, came and asked if they could please sleep in the same room. Ummmmm, no. This led to begging, crying, pouting, and so on. I could go on, but I won't.

Then I read this poem. Wow. I wasn't enjoying them incredibly at that moment. And it makes me think and wonder if I'm giving them what they need to be happy in their lives. Some days it seems like they are so focused on the brokenness that they can't find a way to enjoy it while it's unbroken. I wonder if I've missed something in mothering them that makes them unable to be really happy. Is it too late? Is it the way I look at life that makes them look at life that way? I think I'm a pretty optomistic, happy person, but maybe to them I'm just over protective and crabby, I don't know. I hope they know how much I love them and how much they mean to me, even when I get frustrated with them, as I was tonight. I pray that I can let them know how much they mean to me and how much I love them and that they will enjoy the glass (and life!)
. . .incredibly.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

And then there were two

. . . IN HIGH SCHOOL. I can't believe I have two in high school this year. Where have the years gone? It feels like I was just taking them for their first days of kindergarten. Wow.

My camera batteries died before I got Emma's photos taken. I did get pictures of here but they are on my mom's camera. Erin didn't have school today as she is an upperclasswoman. She did have to go, though, to drive her sister and her friend plus she is the Editor-in-Chief of the school paper this year and they are putting out a back to school issue that had to be to the printer by 3.

Check out the wrist warmers or whatever you call them. She is quite the accessory girl. And nutty too.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Welcome to Kansas

The photo I used in my post last Friday was one I took on one of our trips to the El Paso area to visit our inlaws. It was taken at a place called "Dripping Springs". I think it's a state park in southern New Mexico. Anyway, when I was looking at my flickr photos tonight I saw this one that we took on our trip back to Kansas. I liked how it showed each of the girls' personalities. Something about the picture just makes me smile. I mean, imagine, we've been in the car at least 14 hours, and they're still all smiling. And there are no visible bruises from attacking each other! And then looking at more of the photos I saw these.

This is me with a fiber artist we met. She was SO COOL. Her work was actually featured in a fairly recent "Handspun" magazine. We found her place by driving down little gravel roads in a tiny town. My sister-in-law somehow knew about her and led us there. She was just so full of light and love of her family and humanity and God and she welcomed us all to her studio, showed us the natural dying she was doing, introduced us to her husband, one of her eight children, and her angora goats.

This is the building they use as a studio (her husband is a retired school teacher and weaves too). She had a truly amazing story of how she came to be a weaver. She seems to be living the life I dreamed about when I was younger. Living in the foothills of the mountains, creating art, living simply. The yarn in my hands is yarn my sister-in-law bought me. She didn't spin it, but the multi-colored skein was spun from wool from her goats. I haven't made anything from it yet. Sometimes art supplies are such an inspiration to me, even if I never actually use them. I know that sounds kind of crazy, but just looking at things like yarn, glitter, etc. makes me happy.

This side-trip was definitely the highlight of my trip, and I hope to go visit her again next time we make our annual trek southwest.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Just a quick update, since I'm up at the crack of dawn for a pre-school breakfast/meeting. I am so not a morning person.

We took Emma to a new primary care physician (I am becoming so good at insurance/doctor lingo), not because we were unhappy with our first so much, but unhappy with a clinic policy of not referring outside the clinic for specialists (hence the 2 month wait). Anyway, the new doctor heard the same thing and also recommended a specialist BUT she didn't limit physical activity, didn't use such scary language (although she said it could be that type of heart murmur), and could get us into the pediatric cardiologist in 2 weeks as opposed to 2 months. So, the specialist appt. is a week from today. And Emma can start tennis (1 practice before her appt). I am still a little anxious about her doing much physcially, after our first doc said she should do nothing, but I talked to the coach so I'm ok with it for one day. I hope the cardiologist will give us some info right away. Is that how they do it? Or do you have to wait for things to be "read"? Anyone know?

Ok I'm off.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

How fun does this sound?

Check out this link. I guess if you're not a knitter or don't want to be one, it might not sound very fun, but it sounded kind of magical and amazing to me!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Thoughtful Friday

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meaness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whomever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Jalal ad-Din Rumi
Beloved Persian Poet

Thoughtful Friday at Bella Dia

Saturday, August 2, 2008

And it all comes crashing down

My computer, that is. It's crashed again :( So we're sharing my mom's computer again. It makes me wonder if we are doing something wrong. Maybe it's just 5 people using one computer and it wears it out?? At least 4 of us now use it with regularity. Anyway, besides that this week has been one crazy week. I started back to school on Monday, we had a loooooooooooooong day of enrollment on Thursday, and Ellie was in the community theatre play "Honk" the last three nights. Also, Erin came home from camp and promptly got sick. Her 16th birthday party is supposed to be Monday and we're hoping she's feeling well by then. It is a party at East Lake and it won't be much fun if she still has a cold. I took her to the immediate care clinic this morning and the doc went ahead and prescribed her amoxicillan (sp?) to treat strep without testing her since Emma was diagnosed with strep last week so she's had direct exposure.

And I can't believe school starts in less than two weeks!!! Amazing.

Photos from the play with my next post . . . gotta get some sent to my mother-in-law before I post them here I think!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


How cute is this? People didn't notice she even got it cut and that ticked her OFF majorly. I wish I were half as photogenic as my kids.

And then there's me. Unfortunatly, it looks just like me :) My haircut is a major change and it feels REALLY REALLY short to me. But it will grow. I like it best at the in-between stage, which I'll be at in about 2 months.
This post is about 2 weeks (or more) old. We've been busy with play practices (and other things). Since I can't say no, I've been making props and helping with costumes(if you go to the play . . I made the big hoop snowflakes, the seaweed and the wind and I helped tie-dye the froglet costumes) for Honk!. If you live in Newton I think it will be a great play for families. I haven't really seen that much of it, but it looks really cute and it has 60-70 cast members, ranging in age from 7-60ish, from the community. Ellie is a froglet.

Hi-ho hi-ho it's off to work I go.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Thoughtful Friday (on Saturday)

Thanks for the comments and the prayers sent our way. I'm feeling a little less freaked out today.

I thought I could change the world. It took me a hundred years to figure out I can't change the world. I can only change Bessie. And honey, that ain't easy either.*
Annie Elizabeth (Bessie) Delany, 1891-1995
African-American Author and Civil Rights Pioneer

Thoughtful Friday at Bella Dia
*Although I do think we can change the world, and we DO change it every day, in little ways (which ripple out into big ways), I loved the humor in this quote. I think there's some truth too, that we get so worried about changing the world (and everyone else) that we forget about the fact that we have something to do with the big picture too.

Friday, July 25, 2008



I know, in the big picture, this probably isn't a huge deal, but . . .
I took Emma to the doctor today because her throat has been hurting off and on and then her ear started hurting. He was examining her and he took a long time listening to her chest and back. Then he had her hold her breath and he listened some more. Then he said something like "did we know she had a heart murmur?" Well, no, as a matter of fact, we did not know that. He went on to draw us a little picture of the type of heart murmur he thought he was hearing. He explained that sometimes this is caused by some muscle in the middle of the heart being swollen (or something) and sometimes when a person exercises or does sports it swells so much it blocks the blood from coming through at all and they DIE IMMEDIATELY. He said that. He really did. He didn't say that was what Emma has for sure, but he said no sports or vigorous activity until she can have an EsomethingG and she has to go to a pediatric cardiologist because she is under 16 and they can't see her til Sept. 24. TWO MONTHS. I held it together amazingly well. She had to have a strep test too, and she is the worst for having anything put in her throat. It was all just traumatic. When I told my mom, and Everett, I fell apart a little bit. And everyone is very reassuring . . .lots of people have heart murmurs and are fine. I know that's true. But he said people die immediately. I know there are lots of other health issues people face with their children every day that are more traumatic and life altering than this. But this is the biggest we've dealt with about our kids. And it feels pretty big right at the moment. Emma is being a trooper but she's sad about tennis. She was looking forward to playing in high school. And her throat and ear are still really bothering her, although they said it isn't strep (I won't be surprised if they call tomorrow and say it is, after the culture has done it's thing for 24 hours). Thanks for listening.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

And when she dreamed . . .

They were technicolor go-go dancing dreams.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Thoughtful Friday

When we walk like (we are running), we print anxiety and sorrow on the earth. We have to walk in a way that we only print peace and serenity on the earth... Be aware of the contact between your feet and the earth. Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet.

~Thich Nhat Hanh
Thoughtful Friday at Bella Dia

Monday, July 14, 2008

You've Gotta Have Art

"Art seems to me to be primarily a condition of the soul." -- Mark Chagall

You've Gotta Have Art was an art advocacy campaign during my college days. I've always believed it to be true and am so sad when I see art (music, drama, fine arts) programs cut from our public schools. I'm sad when there are programs in place and they're not taken seriously too. That's not what I want to post about, but when I chose that title it kind of made me go off on a tangent :)

I had one kid at home late last week, while the other two went on a youth service trip, which inspired me to get creative with her. We got out all our goodies to make jewelry and baubles. . . polymer clay, beads, findings, etc. Here's what the table looked like when we started. Doesn't it just make you want to dig in and create???
It did inspire us. Here are a few of the things we created (and some of them we listed on etsy too!).

These are little glass jars we covered with polymer canes we made and cut thin. We're calling them Wishing Jars and we have a little instruction card that goes with them telling how to save your wishes in them :)

These two are cell phone charms made from polymer beads I made.

Then, the weekend happened. We picked up one daughter in Murdock and went to 6 basketball games. We had one daughter come home sick from the youth group service trip. We returned one daughter to the service trip and helped the other get well enough to go to camp a day late. Here is what the table looks like now (and has for the last 3 days).Not so inspiring. But it was fun while it lasted. Just now it's inspiring me to organize my craft supplies and put them away so we have a kitchen table again. I threatened last summer that if the kids didn't get along then they wouldn't get their own rooms and I would keep one room for my "craft" room. They were bickering again this morning on the way (back) to camp. Maybe I should . . hmmmmmm.

You've gotta have art!