Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Photo Update

Reading stacks of library books

Getting bigger (Due Nov 30th)

And Conrad's soccer season just ended

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I admit, I am a Spy

Athena was playing with the baby monitor first thing this morning and it picked up someone else's house. It was a man saying somewhat grumpily, "What are you doing?" to which there was no answer. Well I am nosy and a bit of a muckraker; I left it on and carried it downstairs with me as I made up some breakfast for us. I heard nothing until the father spoke with the baby who's words seemed to say, "I'm two." The father sang twinkle twinkle little star and the baby copied it. It was sweet. No abuse there. Good. I was satisfied with that and turned it off.

I admit, I am a spy. I like to know about my neighbors. And it's not always to collect shady info; one of my neighbors keeps an immaculate lawn. He does all his yard work on Mondays because Monday is his day off. He ALWAYS mows in a tie-died shirt. Always. A couple weeks ago he mowed on a Tuesday and NOT in a tie died shirt. Boy did that shake my world up! :)

Another of my neighbors who has since moved out, had two pit bulls I could see from my upstairs window. I once suspected that neighbor of involving his dogs in dog fight rings. But no evidence ever came of it, and it was most likely untrue.

Another neighbor spoke rudely to his wife while they set up a summer slide and pool for their three year old. -I was in my backyard too, just in earshot. When the wife made an almost inaudible suggestion on how to add shade to the set up, the husband said somewhat explosively, "that's stupid (wife's name)!" When this man talks you can hear him a couple backyards away. He is loud and bossy and abrasive. And I have often suspected him of verbal abuse. They always leave their backyard house light on. - that has nothing to do with abuse- it's just something I noticed.

Most of my suspicions are ungrounded and would never hold up in court, but I still watch. I keep an ear out for anything usual or unusual. I typically know every house who owns a dog and what breed of dog it is; that's because I am irrationally afraid of dogs and I feel like the more I 'know' which houses are 'dog' houses the more in control of the situation I am in. It actually heightens my anxiety over it and I am in fact in less control because I decided to care and take notice, instead of coasting by the house blissfully unaware. And really- I have to be careful because I have seen myself, on some days, turning into one of those hermits who never leaves her house but watches the world through mini blinds. okay that sounds like I sit by the window all day long. -no, I don't do that. But when I walk by my windows I look out them. Athena pulls me out of it because, she has social needs, and it's my job to see those needs are met.

Otherwise who knows what I would become!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Which 'Child' are You?

Here's a poem I learned from MIL that is kind of fun:

Monday's child is fair of face
Tuesday's child is full of grace
Wednesday's child is full of woe
Thursday's child has far to go
Friday's child is loving and giving
Saturday's child works hard for a living
But the child born on the Sabbath day
is fair and wise and good and gay.
- Mother Goose

To calculate your day of birth plug in your numbers here: Calculate Day of Birth

I'm a Wednesday
Conrad is a Sunday
Athena is a Tuesday

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

We went to the Zoo

We went to the zoo and Athena's favorite was the monkey cage. She kept mentioning "thatsa' mommy," "thasa' daddy," "thasa' baby." She is making sense of her world and classifies every adult male as a daddy, every woman as a mommy, and every kid as a baby. Yesterday she said, "bye bye daddy!" to the trash man. Uh oh Conrad.

Yesterday she stood on a chair and looked intently on a fly that came to sit on the chair's back. She gave it her sweetest smile, hunkered her little back down in a humble proposition as she cupped both her baby hands toward the bug. She directed some baby-lish at the fly in a sweet sing-song voice. Her face was the epitome of sweet humility; I just had to stop and enjoy it for a bit. I was going to record it, but the camera was upstairs, so I just watched instead. She gently moved her cupped palms toward the bug, entreating it to hop inside, but it flew away. She laughed as it buzzed around her. And - she goes back and forth: The other day I let her play with a worm and the worm ended up in a few crumbly pieces. Slugs though- they are very durable and she likes their little searching eyes. So unless her hands are salty, slugs are the best outdoor toy.

She loves her Aunt Leah, my little sister who's 16 years old. We are 11 years apart and Leah is 14 years older than Athena so it's like history repeating itself. They really hit it off! We visited grandma's house and I walked into Leah's room to find the two of them sitting on Leah's bed surrounded by soft fleece animals, and pink things, and other little 'pretties' that girls play with. Athena was smiling up at Leah with this total look of excited admiration. In her hand was a chap stick. Athena loves chap stick. I don't know why, but it makes her feel so special to have it in her little hand and reapply it every couple seconds. I've had to take it away in the past because it's messy on a cream colored couch. If she didn't dig in it I'd let her hold it longer. Anyway she looked up at me with this excited special smile and her eyes got big like she was about to have to protect her happy girlish moment. But I wasn't there to confiscate the chap stick. I kissed her head and said, "Do you have chap stick?!" She giggled excitedly. "You feel special!" Then I left the two of them to each other. Later I joked with Leah, "One of these days I won't be cool anymore and she's going to turn to you. You better steer her right!" :)

And an update on me: I'm 33 weeks along so only 7 weeks left to go! Holy moly- I'm in no hurry! Every time I hum baby kicks, and I like knowing one predictable thing about him. Every time I sing Athena says, "No! no! no!" What gives?! I have a relatively nice singing voice. (shrug)I have really enjoyed editing lately. I like being part of a team and being depended on outside of the family. It gives me a different angle of fulfillment that I don't find in my other favorite occupation... -that's mommy; just in case you inferred that I'm selling drugs or some other undercover shady deals.

I'm a scout leader for bears. I like being around those 'male' personalities. The over-excited hyped up immaturity common to that age is annoying and I'm not very patient with it. But on their better behavior, the male humor is refreshing; there's a certain open frankness there, and they just take life as it rolls. They don't over-think or hide their 'true feelings' about things. I can't find the right words right now, but a room full of boys and a room full of girls are such different rooms! I appreciate both, but I appreciate very different things about them. Each room is an entirely different experience.

I've been working in my garden, pulling weeds thigh high because it drives me crazy to see them and I hate to admit I was defeated by weeds once again this year. So come fall I hope to have it looking tidy before the snow hits. My Stella cherry looks diseased- still trying to figure out what it is. I canned a LOT of stuff this year and have really enjoyed doing it. I love seeing stocked shelves that I know will last roughly a year.

Here's what I did:
29 qts Peaches
31 pts Green beans -our own garden
16 pts and 11 qts Pears
7 qts Applesauce
4 qts Pickles
9 pts Apple pie filling
13 pts Tomato chunks - own garden (there's a lot more to come)
4 qts Tomato sauce
7 pts Salsa
10 qts apple slices
9 pts apple pie filling
1 qt apple butter

A picture would say a lot more, but maybe after I'm all done with it.

And last we put up Halloween decorations. Athena loves Halloween. She's catching the spirit of fun in it. I put up a little ghostie in the front yard that sways in the wind. -I've scared myself twice now as it moved in the corner of my eye. - lame? yes.