Saturday, February 19, 2011

random thoughts on the month of february

There are few things I love more than the sight (and smell) of wood smoke puffing out of a chimney in winter.

We all had the flu. On the bright side, I think we saved a week's worth of groceries. And, even brighter, I think I may have lost a few pounds. There's more than one way to skin a cat.

Taking our own handmade elderberry tincture, elderberry syrup, and mullein ear oil (for Gil's ear infection. I foresaw it here). Grateful for God's provision. Plants from the earth bringing health to our bodies.

Elliot turned seven. My quiet, shy, sensitive guy. A spaceship cake. New hiking boots.

The sound of little hands raking through the LEGO container is both grating and gratifying. It's unbelievably loud, but they're so rapt and content and occupied.

A lady from Allstate Motor Club called me today from Duluth, Minnesota. I stalled the conversation and kept her on as long as I could just to hear her talk. It took everything within me to refrain from busting out in my own stellar accent (ala the mom on Bobby's World/Fargo). I think she would have been impressed...and maybe a little horrified.

I've decided if it's going to be freezing cold, and winter anyway...I'd prefer everything be covered in purifying white snow. It's just so much prettier.

I just read a book about the life and story of Henrietta Lacks. And it still sits with me deeply.

Made truffles twice this month. I'm starting to get a little looser with excuses to make them. It's Valentine's Day! It's a lunch with friends! It's...sunny out! It's....Friday! Oh dear.

I miss Florida right now. Not living there. Not the giant Hooter's girls on the sides of city buses. Not the maddening traffic or the endless concrete and stripmalls. Not the oppressive heat and humidity. But my family. My best friends. Sunshine. I've got a little road trip brewing in the back (the very back) of my mind.

I might be transforming into a (gasp) dog person. Oh, just the words!!! I just know that the last time Roxy embraced the Fed-Ex guy and showered him with love, I thought "Oh, that's so cute!" because I know how affectionate she is. And then I realized with dread...I'm that person! That crazy lady whose dog levels you and she says "Oh, she's friendly...she's really just so sweet". That person.

Baby Gilead walking and "talking"...getting impossibly cuter with every moment. And to balance it out, also more mischievous every moment. (Um, otherwise, we'd mistake him for being practically perfect in every way!) So, he's either hugging my neck or splashing in the toilet. Either kissing my cheek or sliding a chair over to the sink and grabbing all of the clean silverware and dishes and tossing them onto the floor with reckless abandon. Either singing and dancing or demolishing elaborate LEGO masterpieces. Baby, baby, babyness.

Finished my first knitting project. Just a dishcloth, but it was good practice for casting on, increasing, decreasing, and casting off. Scarf is up next. I'm such a novice, but I love it. I love to knit. And this site is fantastic.

A happy winter's day to you, friends.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

fire and ice

We had a small break from our otherwise extreme winter weather this weekend. It was absolutely beautiful. Full sunshine, blue skies, and temperatures into the 50's. We tried to soak in every second.

On Saturday morning, I was having a.....a moment. One those times when I needed to get out and escape the world for a minute, or five, or sixty. :) So, I put Gil down for a nap and started walking toward the fields adjacent to the house. I noticed after a bit that Elliot was following me. At first, I told him that I needed to be alone, but he still kept up for a bit, about 50 ft. behind me. Finally, I stopped and said that I just didn't want to have to talk. And he said "OK." And I knew it was. Of all my children, it's Elliot that would have no problem being silent and taking a walk "with me" and yet alone. So he ran up with me, and we just quietly walked. I hadn't taken this walk since the winter, with everything so died down and exposed. I just went slow and took it all in. We walked through some broken spots in the deer fence to explore some deer tracks/trails and some thickets, and the back side of the creek that runs through our front yard. Elliot would stop every now and then and stuff a treasure in his pocket. At one point, I wished I had brought my camera, but then I was glad I hadn't. It was a nice little private experience that is etched in my mind pretty thoroughly. And I like it there. On the far side of the fields, there were some giant patches of snow that had still not melted, and were more like very thick piles of squishy ice. Elliot and I silently got sticks and drew designs and words in the snow. He held his hands out and I traced his shadow on the ice, and then he did mine. We stood in the potato field for a bit and silently remembered plowing there, planting, weeding, picking the bugs off the leaves, and later harvesting. What a sweet morning, and it did my soul good.

That same evening, the kids wanted to have a fire outside because we hadn't been able to do that in such a long time. So, Connor got it going, and we all joined him for a bit to enjoy the setting sun...