Sunday, February 28, 2010

A favorite place, Mom, Your choice

1. We three enter the bookstore together and without a word, we scatter in three different directions.
2. My mom completely understands me. We think alike and I am glad. Only I didn't realize this and be glad of it until much later in life.
3. Now we three are in the supermarket. We splurge and each choose a special drink of our own. Tess is very excited about her choice of Jones All Natural Cream Soda, made with cane sugar and not corn syrup. It smells like her favorite ice cream from Bruester's.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Snow kiss, Busy hands, Transformed

1. Snow flurries scatter on the air. I feel the lightest touch; a tiny kiss of cold on my arm each time one lands on me.
2. A couple of little organizing jobs around the house makes my day feel productive. This begets more cleaning in order to prolong the productive feeling.
3. We have 10 minutes to waste so I go to the car wash. Wow! A clean car is like having a complete make-over and we drive into the world confident and shiny.

Friday, February 26, 2010

In the Blink of an Eye

A dear, local, fellow blogger and her five children suddenly lost their husband and father last night. Hers was the first blog I read this morning as I checked on my favorites, leaving me in stunned disbelief. I have never met Ginger. I only know her through her day to day posts and her kind comments on my blog now and then. And yet, through type written words and a glowing 20-inch monitor, our lives became connected. I cannot imagine her pain and loss. I know she will be comforted by family and friends who are physically present in her life. But, added to that are the invisible ranks of fellow bloggers who will lift up silent prayers and form an additional circle of people who deeply care about Ginger and her family.

Suddenly my problems seem so small.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Great Kids, Fatherly Advice, In the Dark

1. Laughter erupts from the other room where young teens are working together. I hear, "Shh" and the voices are quiet. Their voices ebb and flow this way all evening.
2. At just the right moment, Steve gently reminds us that when we make mistakes, this is how we grow and learn.
3. I walk into my house and it appears deserted. I see someone has left the phone lying on the counter. I pick it up and say, "Hello? Who is this?, Where is everybody?" with such a query in my voice that Chelsea, on the other end, laughs.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Napping Room, My Sentiments Exactly, Off

1. Gunner naps on his dog bed, Henri naps on a chair and baby naps in my arms while I slowly rock. I delay setting baby into her bed because this suits so well for pondering...and rocking...and thinking.
2. I get excited when I find exactly the right birthday card for someone.
3. Everyone's "Check Engine" lights are corrected. These little buggers can throw life into a tizzy.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Coconut Lovers' Treat, The Big Reveal, Crunchy-Chewy

1. I make a special stop at Food Lion just for Edy's All Natural Creamy Coconut Fruit Bars.
2. The snow line has receded from the pathways revealing grass that we haven't seen in months. The yard appears so much bigger now.
3. The corner edge of home baked brownies.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A knock on the head, Sunshine, Forgiveness

1. The truth can be very ugly, but only the truth can open our eyes. And only when our eyes are open can we see God.
2. The sun poured out warmth this weekend, lifting spirits with promises of spring.
3. Forgiveness, nothing is more beautiful than forgiveness.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Understanding That Which Makes No Sense or Why it is Hard to Post Right Now

Some days seem to be filled with more sorrow than joy. Broken hearts and disappointments are a fact of life and come unbidden. But I have learned early on that joy still exists where there is sorrow and to find joy in the hard times is a gift. So, as our family enters a sad chapter titled, 'The Foolishness Bound Up in the Heart of a Child", I will look for God's grace and mercy and I know that I will surely find it.
"Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches." Prov. 24:3-4

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Favorites, Good Book, The Groomer

1. Wearing favorite jeans, favorite sweater, favorite shoes (for no particular reason) makes the day feel just right.
2. I completely enjoyed reading The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton.
3. Henri's dreadlocks are gone and his overgrown, shaggy coat is as soft as velvet. A trip to the groomer makes him cuddly again. The excitement wears him out and he sleeps for the rest of the afternoon.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Redwing Blackbird, Mobile, Sold

1. Winter continues without reprieve. But I heard the Redwing Blackbird in NC. over the weekend and his call is a sure sign that spring is on the way. Thinking of my dad, who taught me to listen for this bird each spring.
2. Baby L. learned to crawl. Makes a B-line for the dog bowls.
3. On sale for $20 off, plus $20 gift card means I buy the shoes!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Raleigh via Charlotte, North Carolina

1. An early morning start, thermos of coffee and scones wrapped in wax paper packed for our road trip. A weekend away with the daughters (+ Daniel).
2. Excitement builds as we finally reach our destination, IKEA, 3 hours away from home, where Claire and Daniel are waiting for us. The girls shop for items for their first home and new apartment and it is fun.
3. Sitting around the living room, visiting. We decide to re-arrange the furniture and Claire is happy for our help.
4. Bright Sunday morning sun pours in through the picture window. I choose the rocker bathed in sunlight and begin reading a new book.
5. Steve and Chad are left at home to fend for themselves. They decide to get together and grill Chad's monster hamburgers and hang out together. I'm so happy that Steve has sons now.

Friday, February 12, 2010

A Study of Mailboxes,The Old Spring House, and Frosted Shredded Wheat

Other world, Friends, Love

1. The wind has sculpted the snow's surface into a moonscape. Craters, swirls and peaks in a monotone color.
2. As I carry out the bird seed this morning, two little birds escort me to the feeder. The horses have also nickered good morning to me. I am Cinderella from the Disney movie!
3. Little tokens of love delivered with a kiss.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Still, Smiling, On top

1. The wind has stopped buffeting the house and I can hear the birds again.
2. Audrey's smile.
3. Henri is able to walk on top of the snow while I still fall through. It's funny to see him scamper along on top of it while I am clumsy and get bogged down. The most amazing thing is that he can smell things 2 feet below the surface!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Contagious, Powerful, Thankful

1. Over in the next isle we hear a child's laughter, belly laughter with giggles. Tess and I look at each other and smile.
2. Each particle of snow gives the wind shape, making it visible. There are towering snow tornadoes whirling across the fields. At other times it takes shape as furious waves blowing across the expanse. It is big, powerful, and a bit intimidating
3. I am very, very thankful for our warm house and no loss of power.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Juggling, Saving, Tracking

1. Another snowfall thwarts the day's schedule. The challenge of making last minute changes, re-arranging rides and assessing the weather are becoming second nature.
2. Dropping my extra change into a savings jar.
3. Three parallel sets of footprints in the snow. Rabbit, squirrel and bird. It looks like some form of hieroglyphic writing.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Skills, Baked Ziti, Acting it out

1. My daughter was impressed by my ability to get her friend's car out of the snowbank and off the icy drive. Growing up in the north has it's perks and the skills which lay dormant now rise to the surface. Shovel gravel under the wheels for traction while two people push and the third drives. I loved her reaction when I told her we were going to push. Yes...moms can push cars. Did I remember to take my apron off?
2. We were thankful for this delicious recipe of Baked Ziti from Williams Sonoma. We all had a busy day and dinner provided time to relax, savor the flavors and catch our breath.
3. He relates a story of viewing an elegant reception hall in his mucky barn clothes. We are at his farm and he acts out some of the scenes in said barn clothes, so it is easy for me to imagine.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Dazzling landscape, The sled, Treats

1. Our entire world is covered in sparkling glitter. Huge, unbroken expanses of deep snow and every single flake is a piece of glitter. It dazzles my eyes and makes me stare in wonderment.
2. After a satisfying dinner of Ginger's pot roast with barley we all go outside for some sledding fun. The sled that Steve built is the best. (This is the only photo I found that shows the sled.) Built with old skies and some scrap wood, this sled is a blast.
3. Coconut cream tart and New York Black and Whites. I like it when everyone comes over, so I can bake knowing I won't eat it all myself.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Another Stormy Day

1. Because we've had so many snow storms this season, we must title them with the date as well as the year. More specifically, "The Storm of February 5/6th, 2010" or "The Storm of January 30, 2010".
2. We experience two days within one. The first half is white, gray and snow driven. Once the storm clears, a whole new day dawns of bright, purple and heavily white.
3. Audrey and The Horse (because we can't agree on a name) run through the snow and they are both smiling.

Ornaments, Let It Snow, Why Do I Garden?

1. Chickadees ornament the wintry branches of the dogwood. A red Cardinal perched at the top, plays the role of the star on the Christmas tree.
2. We don't bother clearing the snow and the afternoon is spent quietly, allowing the storm to blanket us.
3. I enjoy pondering Elizabeth's question, "Why Do I Garden?".

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Dogs=Fun, A favorite, Old Movie

1. I like to see baby's response when the dogs come into the room. She jumps up and down, smiles and squeals.
2. We enjoy one of my favorite dinners tonight. Potato pies; little hand-held butter crust pastries filled with potato and cheese, served with fresh greens and stewed tomatoes.
3. Tess and I watch a Haley Mills movie from 1966, The Trouble With Angels. The clothes and hairstyles are a lot of fun to see. One of my favorite lines is, "Tell him that Mother Superior is stifling your creative flow."

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tuned, Storing up, Chased

1. When the piano tuner is finished, he plays beautiful melodies up and down the keyboard and smiles at his work.
2. Steve picks up another load of hay before the next storm arrives. I feel better knowing we have it stored up in time.
3. The owner of the farm chases me down his long driveway, honking his horn for me to stop because he thinks I'm a trespasser. Once I poke my head out the window and he sees that it's me, he smiles. The little pointed hood tied around his serious face makes me giggle and I think it's not a very good style for confronting intruders.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Gentle snow, Baking beats the blues, Snow people

1. A beautiful, gentle snow fell... all... day... long.
2. Gingerbread and biscotti, two things I haven't made in a long time. No cabin fever here.
3. Tess and I built snow people. The fun part was gathering sticks, stones and twigs for body parts.
When Henri went out after dark, he barked and barked at the strange shapes, thinking they were intruders.
Sometimes, if you stand on the bottom rail of a bridge and lean over to watch the river slipping slowly away beneath you, you will suddenly know everything there is to be known."
- Winnie the Pooh

Monday, February 1, 2010

Relief, Stampede, Out for dinner

1. I have to drive the truck four times (!) over a scary, snow covered bridge that has no sides. It crosses a rushing creek. I feel a huge wave of relief and victory each time I complete the crossing.
2. I enjoy Audrey's telling of how 21 horses broke out of their fence and galloped through snow covered fields. She describes the sound of a stampede. She and the owner herded them back, so all's well that ends well.
3. We dine out on a gift card we received for Christmas. It's a novelty for us, something we never do, so that makes it fun.