Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Full of Girl Life

When I have a long List To Be Accomplished, I always seem to have a little girl on my lap. She tries my patience, but she also provides the best laughs. I snapped this picture a few months ago. Not the best photography, but a perfect capture of happy childhood. I love the little sister watching from inside. I love the eyes screwed shut, praising the Lord. I love the kitty balanced on her shoulder. In the next moment the kitty scratched her neck and the praises stopped. She threw the kitty away from her. I hope that part is not what she learned from me.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Wintery Garden Thoughts

We are experiencing typical weather patterns for a Northwest Ohio November: it is getting cold outside. Signs point to a long, hard winter; the accumulated fat around my body is thicker than normal.
Yes, it doesn't feel at all like summer outside, so naturally I am thinking about our garden. I rarely think about the garden when it is hot, because during the summer months it is not a shared garden, but Corey's sole responsibilty. This works out nicely for me, because I don't like to bend over monster sized zucchini plants with a merciless sun overhead. It is cold now,and I am more than willing to share the my Star Green Hand's work load.
Here are my thoughts on this chilly day, (when the work of weeding, picking and preserving is far removed).

We should plant more
  • Broccoli (it is the only green vegetable that Sam and Norah will eat)
  • Carrots (and we will "thin" them appropriately, so we don't get the Twisted Roots of Weirdness again)
  • Beets (because I discovered I actually like these)
  • Lettuces (but stagger the plantings, so we have less at a time for longer)

We should plant fewer

  • Beans (because no one likes them except me and they are a Pain to pick)
  • Zucchini (this requires no explanation)
  • Yellow Crook-Neck Squash (it's not that we had too much, but rather that it was planted too close to the zucchini and they had unlawful relations)
  • Eggplant (same reason as the Yellow Crook-Necked. We obviously need to have a garden chaperone for the squash family)
  • Tomatoes (unless you stake them, they tend to rot on the ground, hidden by the overprotective mother plant who doesn't want her babies taken from her)

We should add

  • Potatoes (The volunteers were fun!)
  • Red Bell Peppers (somehow our green ones didn't like growing, and reds are sweeter)
  • Pumpkins and Gourds (why should I buy them when I could grow them?)
  • Leeks (because they are a Biblical vegetable)
  • Herbs (see Leeks)
  • Sweet Potatoes (love me some yams)
  • Cucumbers (not pickles)
  • Marshmallows (I would like to be self sufficient when it comes time to make Sweet Potato Casserole)
  • Flowers (Expounding on this will require a separate post, I'm sure)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Things I Must Do.

I need to make my to-do lists shorter. Presently, they leave me too tired to write about all that I do.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Summer Storms and Sleepy Times

I'm sitting near an open window so I can hear the gentle storm outside. Rain. It is so peaceful that I may just go to bed, turn off the fans and listen myself to sleep.

Why wasn't rain this soothing in childhood? I should ask my children, because they're not falling asleep as ordered. I am trying to establish a routine of sorts that includes Family Bible time and an earlier bedtime. For our Bible reading tonight (which Weston said was even funner than the Andersons') I read from the first chapter in Matthew, Corey asked the children questions about what we'd just read and finally they each drew a picture about our reading. Of course, Corey's first question was "Who did Jacob beget?" Norah drew an interesting picture of God and Jesus (both skinny, bearded figures) and the Holy Spirit (a turquoise triangle). Beside each of them was a curious brown scribble symbolizing their power. Art really does reveal so much of the artist's personality.

Anyway, long before they ran out of drawing ideas, it was time to brush teeth and go to bed. Since the girls' room is still in shambles, Norah's mattress has been temporarily placed in the boys' room. This arrangement should not transform bed time into social hour, but she doesn't seem to understand this. Ah well. If they don't settle down to an 8:30 PM bedtime on their own, the 6:30 AM wake up-and-hurry life that is merely a week away will soon force them.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Feelings, Family, Friends

Summer life around the new Ruffer Homestead has been short of relaxing. However, I always make time to over-analyze my feelings (it is important to have priorities and stick with them). Analysis to date: I don't feel quite at home here, but I am happy. Some rooms have a certain homeyness to them, others are still generic feeling despite being inhabited by our messes. The upstairs bathroom is the most serene room as of yet. This is good, no doubt, because we all spend time there throughout the day.
The amount of work is a little over-whelming to both Corey and me. We naturally deal with this in different ways: he is outside working and I am inside ignoring dirty dishes and walls that need attention. I'm giving myself five more minutes here before I launch attack on the kitchen and then start scraping old wallpaper (who's bright invention was that?).
Briefly then, I'm trying to put together a family party to say goodbye to Mike & Mandi & Ezra. If you know them and can come on Labor Day weekend, please do. We'll even find a bed for you if you want to make it overnight.
Also, please pray for our friends, the Throne family, whose newest member has been suffering seizures and is hospitalized at St. Vincent's. Read all about Meg Avery Throne, and offer petitions for her and her family.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Piki's Flowers

My grandmother, Piki, passed away on Friday, June 12, 2009.

Just looking at that sentence makes my eyes water. On my dining room table sit flowers from her funeral. I know that it is time to throw them out, but I cannot steel myself to the task. To toss them away, these now-ugly, decaying blossoms, seems too casual. I would throw out others - normal, everyday flowers. I would save a bouquet from a wedding. But what do I do with these? They are neither normal nor particularly beautiful nor did Piki choose them herself.

When I see them, I think of her, and I do not want to stop thinking of Piki.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Box Avoidance

Facing the second night in our new country home, I should be unpacking, sorting, arranging or something else productive, but I don't want to.
My husband just walked by the window, gun slung over his shoulder. Not everyone approves of guns, and I am just glad that there are fewer neighbors here to protest his personal war on starlings.
Just like the starlings, I am an alien here. I feel as though I still belong in our little 407 house on South Street.
But the big yard is nice, and the kids like the pond.