Archive for September, 2009


Some women, they decorate with beautiful new furniture. What do I get?


A 4ft X 8ft plywood lego table smack in the middle of my family room. It’s time for First Lego League. DNA, Mojo, and a group of kids are competing this year. They have been gathering, building, programming, and practicing several times each week. This table is dominating my room and a bit of an eyesore, but I’d venture to say that a new couch or some other pretty piece of furniture would not bring nearly as much joy or excitement into the room.


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Harvest Time

My garden is in its last gasps now. We’re finally getting ripe tomatoes and still more squash then we can eat but it’s clear things are winding down. I’m looking forward to pulling up all the plants (goodbye, at last, squash!) and letting the chickens loose in the yard to forage. My garden is not the only place where veggies have been springing up, they’ve been coming off the knitting needles, too.

These three will be finding new homes with my niece, nephew and a friend. Perhaps I should send some squash along with them.

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Trash-Picked Treasures

Look what John brought home.

This was on the curb in a box of of yard sale leftovers awaiting trash pickup. Isn’t it cool? The original price tag was still in place. Any guesses how much it cost? $1.69. Awesome. Perfect timing, too, since Oli just started taking hot lunches in a thermos last week. His thermos does not fit in his regular lunch box but it fits in this one. I had to customize this so it suits my boy. Since today is Talk Like A Pirate Day, I knew just what to do.


I’d say it’s perfect for “me little scurvy lad.”

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First Grade

Oli is now a first grader. This has been a big and scary transition for him. Many tears have been shed along the way. He seems to, finally, be settling in and actually looking forward to school. It helps that his teacher is loving and fun. She seems to know just what makes my boy tick. Yesterday he came home and proudly showed me his “pointing finger.”

My beginning reader has to wear it to point at words as he reads to me.

The finger is getting lots of use and Oli is looking foward to going back to school to get more books to point at. Who would have thought that a scary, gory finger would make the long and scary school day so much fun.

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My sweet girl turned nine last month.

We waited until the back-to-school madness settled down to have a party. The party was at home, nothing too planned or complicated, just a cookout, scavenger hunt and cupcake decorating.

Oddly, their favorite activity was carrying the screen tent through the neighborhood, marching and singing as loudly as they could.

This was not an activity I planned for. No, this is only something that a dozen girls, hopped up on sugar and the glee of just playing together could dream up. It was perfect.

Instead of presents, Mojo requested that her friends bring supplies for the animal shelter.

The day after the party, we delivered them to the shelter.

When I asked my child later what her favorite part of her birthday was, it was not the American Girl stuff we showered her with. It was not the joyful frenzy of friend play (oh boy was it a frenzy!). It was taking the supplies to the shelter. Yes, my girl, she’s is growing up and her big and loving heart seems to be growing even bigger.

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White and Nerdy

That would be John (the nerdy part). Not me. In celebration of his 48th birthday, we went on a Segway tour. I anticipated this tour being fun and it was! Perfect weather, a beautiful park combined with this ingenious device and we had one of the best afternoons of the summer.

A friend clued me in to this Weird Al music video (sorry, time is short so I couldn’t mess with embedding it in the post).. We were ROTFL.

I find it hard to believe that I’ve celebrated 22 of John’s birthdays with him. I remember the first one clearly — he was turning 26. I drove to Boston to visit him toting along a microwave lemon cake. We ate it under a willow tree — the same tree that (many years later) he proposed to me underneath. I searched the grocery store for microwave cake mixes and they are no longer made. It would have been nice to have a taste of the cake that started it all even if it probably would not have been as good as we both remember it to be. I guess that cake is kind of like a metaphor for our relationship. I whipped that original out in a few minutes and we devoured it together — simple, sweet, easy, perfectly sized for two. Now, I make complicated cakes from scratch, cakes that take an hour and use a thousand bowls make giant messes. We eat them with our family, amidst the messy kitchen. But you know what? It’s even better. Bigger, sweeter, with more layers, and extra filling — just like our love. Happy Birthday, John! I love you because you are so white and nerdy.

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