Sunday, September 28, 2008

Light Subtracts Itself

"When someone dies, you don't get over it by forgetting; you get over it by remembering, and you are aware that no person is ever truly lost or gone once they have been in our life and have loved us, as we have loved them." - Leslie Marmon Silko

My long-time friend Maryfrances Wagner has a new book of poetry: Light Subtracts Itself. I got it Friday and have been gulping it down since. During the time she wrote the book, she lost fourteen close friends and family members. The book is not only a perspective on loss, but on rejuvenation and rebirth.

Maryfrances' book is very well written. It is endorsed by poets Gary Gildner, Denise Low and William Trowbridge.

Of course I'm also savoring the book because I have known Maryfrances since 1986. She has been both friend and mentor, in writing and in life. She was the first person I called when I heard my father had died of cancer.

It takes so much time and effort to write our lives down, in any form. But it is worth it. We need to remember.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Field Trip to AppleWorks

At some time, every kid in Johnson County takes a field trip to AppleWorks. Matt got his turn this morning. It was a good time, for both of us, and the rest of Matt's preschool. The weather was perfect. We learned lots about apple farming; sampled apples, cider and baked goods; and got a tour both of the facility and of the fields. Matt was happy to pick two apples from a tree on the wagon ride. After the kitchen tour (did I say it had become more commercial?), I had to purchase cider and dumplings to take home. We've had their dumplings before and nothing compares (I'm counting down until dinner).
No one could've pried that bag from Matt's hand.
Matt loved the play area (with petting zoo and slide). That was one helluva slide. Too scary for me.
Matt's is still in his "bus" phase. He would've been happy sitting here all morning.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

American Girl

Favorite Thing to Say "Is it snack time?"
Currently Reading Clementine
Working On Making brother Matt scream; first cross-stitch
Ideal Day Waking up with a hundred American Girl dolls, and friends to share them with
What's New Brown leather boots
Current Toy Box of erasers (that have names)
Latest, Greatest Feat Making pizzas Friday night
Big Love Playing with friends
Cookie of Choice Oreo

Friday, September 19, 2008

Grilling Pizza

We have been experimenting with grilled pizzas. It's cheaper than Papa John's (Erik's Friday night habit) and just as fast. I like how the crust is crispy on the bottom. We brush on olive oil (on top) before the toppings. Baking them on the pan makes them super easy. We made three "thin crust" tonight with a doubled batch of dough.

Sarah had a great time making hers and Erik's. Aunt Amy, she wants to know if this picture qualifies her for a job?

Here's my dough recipe. No joke––I clipped this in 1980 from a World magazine.

Pizza Dough

1 package of dry yeast
1 cup of warm water
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of sugar
2 tablespoons of salad oil
2 1/2 cups of flour

Dissolve the yeast and sugar in water. Wait 5-10 minutes. Add the salt and salad oil before the flour. 

We Are Having A Baby

After all those seeds and dozens of blooms––one small (but growing) pumpkin. He must be very special.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Small Things

Here are the (little things) I'm enjoying and/or thankful for today:
  • seeing the shed being painted--and crossing it off my "to do" list
  • knowing that although I've been working very hard (and very late at night) this week, I am working at home (and that I have work)
  • the smell of lemon on my fingers (I made a marinade for chicken this morning)
  • the lovely warm-yet-cool September sunny-ness
  • happy, healthy kids
  • good hair today
  • halfway clean house (being positive--there are dirt clods on the kitchen floor but the bathrooms are clean)
  • knowing tomorrow is Friday

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Who Stole the Cookie from the Cookie Jar?

This proves moms not only have eyes on the back of their heads, they have cameras, too.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sugar Daddy

Favorite Thing to Say Singing annoying songs in the morning to wake up the kids
Currently Reading Exit Music; ESPN Magazine; Strand Magazine; Atlantic Monthly; Shibumi; Five Families; Illicit; Best American Crime Reporting of 2007; Sports Illustrated
Working On Teaching Sarah spelling
Ideal Day Cool fall day, reading at home
What's New "It's Classified"
Current Toy Surprisingly, nothing to speak of
Latest, Greatest Feat Making dinner tonight for the kids
Big Love Hometown of Maryville, MO (and a Pagliai's Pizza)
Cookie of Choice Fig Newton

Thursday, September 11, 2008

"Christmas is Coming"

What's with the barrage of Christmas catalogs? Is it my imagination or do they come earlier and earlier each year? I will try to think of them as a reminder to get handmade gifts moving (yeah, right!). I will spare you one of the red-velvet Christmas wreath photos I looked at, sitting here in my shorts. One of the things I liked about living in England was that Christmas happened at, well, Christmas.

Did you know...Bob Hope amassed an 85,000-page joke file, digitally scanned and broken down into categories, which he stored in file cabinets in a theft- and fire-proof walk-in vault in the office next to his North Hollywood home?

This is the best I can muster today. Next week I start a series of projects for a new client so this week has been crazy. I've been wrapping up both home and work projects. It's always like this before something new and big––it's like I'm gathering everything under the roof before a storm. The air feels static-y with change and transition. The kids are thriving at their respective schools which is wonderful. It's good to know the chicks are fine while the hen runs whilly-nilly.

Today I launched a new site for a client: - INphysics is a group of nuclear physicists in Indy. The only thing better than having a project completed is having a happy, satisfied client.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Smithy of my Soul

"Welcome, O life! I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race." - James Joyce, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Friday, September 5, 2008

Miss Spider

I spotted this lady in the garden today. Given her size, she not only lives in the house, she has ingested any prior inhabitants.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

About A Boy

Favorite Thing to Say "Maybe later?"
Currently Reading Block City
Working On Potty Training (according to my parents, anyway)
Ideal Day Playing with "Doo-dah" (sister) all day at home
What's New Sandbox at preschool
Current Toy Dump truck full of cars
Latest, Greatest Feat Carrying heavy dump truck up and down stairs; saying lots of new words
Big Love Green Blanket
Cookie of Choice Goldfish

Raindrops on Roses

What a relief, to see some rain. Not much, but it's some. The plants are parched. The grass is so yellow it breaks when I walk on it. The water on the deck looks novel, I can't remember the last time it was wet. I am inclined to go sit, barefoot, outside.

Denim Pocket Bag

I felt a little sneaky, taking a picture of this bag. It belongs to Sarah's best friend and yes, I snapped it while the girls were outside playing. I thought it was such a cute quick (cheap) craft idea I had to seize the moment. The friend made it from an old pair of men's jeans.


Monday, September 1, 2008

What's Important


Ah you don't want to,
you're scared
of poverty,
you don't want
to go to the market with worn-out shoes
and come back with the same old dress.

My love, we are not fond,
as the rich would like us to be,
of misery. We
shall extract it like an evil tooth
that up to now has bitten the heart of man.

But I don't want
you to fear it.
If through my fault it comes to your dwelling,
if poverty drives away
your golden shoes,
let it not drive away your laughter which is my life's bread.
If you can't pay the rent
go off to work with a proud step,
and remember, my love, that I am watching you
and together we are the greatest wealth
that was ever gathered upon the earth.

Pablo Neruda

Small Thing of the Day