What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Friday, April 30, 2010

Foto Friday: Signs

We had to scout out signs last week for the photo challenge.

Here are my contributions:

I was so busy looking at the SIGNS, I wasn't paying attention to the many crazy faces Corynn was making. She even had one that looked as though she were puking everywhere. I didn't post that. (You're welcome.)

These were all taken at an antique store in this little teeny tiny town. Turns out, it is the oldest commercial building in the area and served as a Mercantile even into the 1700's, from what the owner said. Lots of character.

I liked the sign on the porch, too.

And from our barn: apparently, we are American Agriculturists! :-)

Other signs:

In order to participate in these Foto Friday challenges, you must take a photo (or several) pertaining to the challenge WITHIN the challenge week and post it/them to your blog. When you do, please link back to this blog {you may use the button if you like} so that perhaps we can get lots of participants! (Because, you know, the more the merrier!) Then simply link to your Foto Friday post with Mr. McLinky here so that we all can visit you and compare notes...

For those of you new to this blog (or to Foto Friday's in general), each Friday we get a new photo challenge to work on for the week and we post our photos the next Friday and link back up here. Whatever your skill level, the goal is to get behind your camera and to begin, as you practice, to view subjects in a different light. To extend yourself and your concepts and ideas. To create ART instead of just snapping a picture. And to do it all while having FUN.
Next week's challenge is..... STILL LIFE.

If you are unsure about what STILL LIFE photography is, read this.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Beautiful bits

Uncle Paul came out to visit this past weekend and chugging along behind him was a truckload of boxes for me to go through. As we have gotten to know one another on a more personal level, he has found out that I can and I sew and that I garden and this and that. He says I remind him very much of Nancy and he asked if he could bring "some" of her things.

What I did NOT expect was that it would be an entire TRUCKload!

Many things were boxed that are easier for someone less-emotionally attached to discard, like old magazines and old cookbook pamplets, easter baskets and such.

But some things were over-the-top amazing.

He brought me her canning jars (yay!) and lids and even a CANNER. He brought me a stockpot and some original Ball Blue Books. He brought a few baby outfits that Nancy had set aside as gifts for people (both boy and girl). He brought the children a handmade rocking horse that has been in the family.

And, after their children had gotten what they wanted of it all, he packed up Nancy's sewing room into boxes and plunked it down in my house.

I spent an entire evening going through those boxes and I can't recall the last time I had so much fun. I felt like a little girl, going through her mothers' sewing basket, except the "basket" was actually several cardboard boxes and the "little girl" was all grown up. (I will say there were plenty of little ones circled round, oohing and aahhing right alongside their mother.)

As I would unlatch a box or lift up a lid, I became more and more certain that it wasn't just the hugging and the kissing that made Nancy and I kindred spirits.

Is it me or can you actually "see" the beauty of another when you admire their things?

I would look at the spools of thread and saw her mending away. I saw knitting needles and practically heard their clinks. I fingered the fabric and wondered what she might have been planning to use it for. I dove my hand into her enviable button bin and could see the little hands of her children, around her feet, sorting and playing, those many years ago.

Such beauty, I thought I would share some of it...

~the enviable button bin~

~what looks to be an older-than-dirt button bag. Too old to be called "vintage"... "antique"seems much better suited~

~zippers, an entire bag full. Many, cut directly out of fabric. I guess I have a thing or two to learn about frugal, waste-not ways after all!~

~thread. A whole LOT of it. But SOME with wooden spools! (be still my heart!)~

~darning equipment, in the same baby wipes container as the Fun Fur~

~taunting knitting needles. WHY, oh WHY, can't I get the hang of it?!~

~trims, lace, ric rac, bias tape. I love the lemon one. It might be my favorite. Or maybe the red one below~

I am afraid my sewing room is destined to be cluttered. I just went through it all this winter, sorting, packing, giving away and selling stuff. Only to have this wonderfully thoughtful generosity poured down upon it. I am not complaining...

I will just have to sew MORE and MORE and MORE. That's all.

There was also sewing scissors, a strawberry pincushion and several other necessities of a working sewing room which, sadly, I already had.

I have been planning on making a sewing basket of her very own for my girl for her birthday in September. I remember the year my mother bought me my sewing basket. (I use it to this day!) It was undoubtedly my favorite gift growing up. I remember reverently touching the REAL sewing scissors, that were too big for my hand. I remember rolling and rerolling the measuring tape and admiring the seam ripper and fabric pencils. I remember wondering what exactly the metal ruler thing was with the red plastic bit in the middle. ;-)

I think a sewing basket might cause the same sweet memories for my Corynn, given her early infatuation with sewing.

Now I have a headstart on the basket stocking, thanks to Aunt Nancy.

But shhhhh! Don't tell!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Moment of Your Time

Once there was a woman; a lovely, vivacious God-fearing woman.

A woman who set about doing dishes at the end of the day while saying "I am SO happy to be doing dishes because they show just how heartily we have been cared for..." This woman was lovingly called "Baby" by her husband, her best friend, and would gladly make his plates up each meal. And yet, her feisty streak was comparable only to his and they could certainly banter back and forth, those two. Her shine-filled eyes matched her boisterous laugh and she gave kisses and hugs out freely. This woman leaned upon God and always encouraged others to do the same, her faith never wavered...not even when it was discovered she had terminal cancer.

She would put on a smile and there that smile stayed, even as the cancerous pain spread and her physical struggles deepened. She made time to hear the stories of others, to make small talk and to take an interest in everyone elses' life, even while the sweat poured off her and despite her own fraility. Her type of cancer eventually made it impossible to sit down and when that happened, she would stand at the kitchen, leaning on the counter to make peanut brittle, sending it along for friends and family to enjoy.

I know about this woman because I married into her family. She was my husbands' Aunt. I had only met her a handful of times, usually around holidays, but it was I who she always greeted with a kiss and a heartfelt hug. Huggers and kissers are my kindred spirits. And besides, she had me at the peanut brittle.

The last time I saw her in person was the first time I saw her with cancer. She had travelled several states to visit with her family, to hug her mother, and to be reunited once again...for the last time. There she was. Laughing in spite of the pain, asking how WE were doing...it seemed *almost* as if life wasn't ending for her but her profusely sweating body and her feeble attempt to rest by leaning against the counters betrayed her and revealed a vastly different story. We parted ways and I left...changed.

That very week, I wrote her a letter telling her how I admired her strength and dignity and I promised her that I would pray...hard. I licked the envelope, thrust on a stamp and sailed it away to her. I did pray hard, and so did the children. Aunt Nancy and Uncle Paul became a household name and a stream of constant prayer was uplifted on their behalfs.

The next week, I scribbled a little note, printed a few photographs and sent my love tucked in white paper again.

And so it went. Some weeks I would quote scripture. Some weeks I would tuck in artwork from the children, some days photographs, mostly though I just rambled on an on about silly little "life" things like chickens and the garden producing and flowers picked from yard to table. Bits of nothingness. Often, I wondered if she thought me a nuisance or thought me self-centered for always rambling on about such inconsequential things while she was living out the most IMPORTANT scenes of her life.

She never wrote back, I knew she was likely too weak, but I *hoped* that rather than be perturbed by my constant ramblings, those letters might provide even just a moments' reprieve from her sufferings.

I found out that she had died shortly after I mailed what would be my last letter to her. I would never find out if she received it.

Later, her husband came back to his wifes' girlhood home so that we might all mourn and celebrate Nancy together. After the funeral, her husband sought me out and with quivering voice and damp eyes he took my hands in his and told me how she had cherished those letters, often asking for them to be read again and again. He told me that when no one knew WHAT to say, so often they said nothing-but my letters SPOKE, and not of DEATH but of LIFE and they had cheered her so. He told me how she had anticipated those letters and how her face shone when she saw the pictures and heard the silly stories.

He said I will never fully understand what I had done for her. Or his gratitude toward me for it.

We have been corresponding ever since and he never fails to thank me and I never fail to well up with tears.

I say this now, not to puff myself up, but to ashamedly admit how many times I took the easy road and said nothing at all because I knew not what to say. But when Uncle Paul took me in his arms that day long ago and uttered quivering gratitude from sorrow-filled lips, I never realized how profoundly our words can affect people.

I never grasped fully that giving away little inconsequential (to us) moments can make monumental impacts on people.

For the words he has spoken to me and the lessons I have learned, I will always be indebted to HIM. He has shared with me what I so longed to know-that those letters were moments of peace for Aunt Nancy. I can almost see her smiling.

Do not underestimate the power of compassion.
Do not think the small moments you lay at the feet of another are wasted.
Do not simply say nothing just because you don't know what to say.

Talk about flowers with those who mourn and perhaps they will smell roses in their dreams.

Monday, April 26, 2010

second chances

Friday morning I had a special place to go. My Aunt Jan was bringing Opa down for a visit to my mothers' and I intended to go for a visit. But as soon as I started on my way, I started to feel... weird. It didn't take long for me to realize that what was "weird" was that I was actually having CONTRACTIONS. The whole trip, there they were, these subtle, but uncomfortable tightenings. They were about 5-7 minutes apart, but not painful. Atleast, not physically painful.

Emotional pains were quite another story.

The whole car ride I listened to Corynn singing in the backseat and noticed how utterly silent I was. 22 weeks...eyelids and eyebrows are already there. Hairlines are already forming. Fingernails are being sucked on and mouths are already yawning. But even with all these little feats, my baby could not survive outside his/her wombhome. My mind kept wandering to all my friends' and acquantances who have lost babies during this pregnancy (so many) and how I was to be one of them. I prayed. And prayed. and cried. and put eyedrops in my eyes so that I wouldn't look like I had.

When I got to my Mom's I tried to act normal, the last thing I wanted was dramatics..my insides and brain were already being dramatic enough. I sat as much as I could and I plastered on a smile.

The way home was even worse. Almost all day, by now, these little, bothersome contractions were coming...always the same distance apart, always without pain. But always there, threatening my 22 week old Smooch. Little, fervent heartfelt prayers were offered up so often that they became one long, drawn-out heartsong.

I got home. Told Matt. Laid on the couch for the rest of the night. I was so cold. Matt covered me in afghan after afghan. He made the children their suppers. I concentrated on Smooch, pleading for movement. I wondered if I ought to go to the hospital.

I called the midwife.

She asked what I had eaten that day.

"Ummm. Cottage cheese for breakfast."

"AND?" said she.

"That was all for breakfast."

"Carrot sticks, celery, cherry tomatos. Cantalope. A sloppy Joe for lunch."

"Thank goodness for the sloppy joe!" said she. "What about supper?"

"I haven't had any. I have been sick with worry! I haven't had an appetite!"

"And LAST nights' supper?"

"ummm. I didn't have any. BUT that is because I had a later lunch and wasn't HUNGRY!"

"You need to FEED this baby! I have seen plenty of babies who abort because they weren't getting enough food from their mother! You are starving the poor thing. Eat. Eat something small every hour until your blood sugar gets back to where it needs to be and is regulated. The lower your bloodsugar, the less appetite, the lower the bloodsugar and so on. Force yourself. For your baby."

She told me to eat and drink lots of water and if nothing changed I should go to the hospital.

I got off the phone and burst into tears. This baby is going to die because of ME.

What struck ME though, is that I *THOUGHT* I WAS eating for my baby. I never usually EAT breakfast, but I eat cottage cheese now, or yogurt, or a banana. I head for the vegetables and fruit, knowing how many vitamins they contain. And the non-eating thing? Well, when you are full you are full, or so I thought. After all, don't want to be gaining 65 pounds during pregnancy when 20 is average!

I became distressed and sad and burdened and scared anew and then I realized, as I snarfed a plate Matt had made for me and three glasses of water, that this baby HASN'T come yet and maybe this is my second chance.

A chance to make things right again.

Not so very long after, I felt Smooch move and with that movement, a wave of relief hit me.

The rest of the weekend was filled with me drowning in water and Matt shoving yogurt, toast, bananas and anything else he could get his hands on down my throat and me~always waiting for that blessed assurance that Smooch was moving, alive and well.

For two days, s/he hardly moved. But each moment s/he DID, it kept me going. Today, no contractions and Smooch is moving along, happy as a lark. What a beautiful, blessed feeling.

I have a paper on the fridge where I chart my food and drink intake.

I am so thankful for new mercies each day. And second chances...

Friday, April 23, 2010

Foto Friday: RED

Last weeks FoTo Challenge was RED.

I did not pick up the camera once.

My only real plan was to get some slow-shutter streaks of nighttime car breaklights gong across a bridge. When the slutter is show, the breaks would turn into lines....) I procrastinated until last night...when suddenly Matt appeared a night EARLY.

You can BET I wasn't going to drive 20 minutes away after my love finally came home after a week. SO this week I am being a total loser and raiding my archives and not adding a LICK of newness to the bunch.

Posted by Picasa

Now for those people who actually CHALLENGED themselves....

In order to participate in these Foto Friday challenges, you must take a photo (or several) pertaining to the challenge WITHIN the challenge week and post it/them to your blog. When you do, please link back to this blog {you may use the button if you like} so that perhaps we can get lots of participants! (Because, you know, the more the merrier!) Then simply link to your Foto Friday post with Mr. McLinky here so that we all can visit you and compare notes...

For those of you new to this blog (or to Foto Friday's in general), each Friday we get a new photo challenge to work on for the week and we post our photos the next Friday and link back up here. Whatever your skill level, the goal is to get behind your camera and to begin, as you practice, to view subjects in a different light. To extend yourself and your concepts and ideas. To create ART instead of just snapping a picture. And to do it all while having FUN.

~~~~~An Important Note~~~~~~
I am gathering new suggestions for the photo challenges so if anyone has any great suggestions or has something they would like to cover, leave them in the comments!
I will be making a new list this week.

This week's challenge is..... SIGNS

Hope to see you next Friday!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

On my table

When Corynn brought me this flower gift plucked from the woods last week, I oooh-ed and ahhh-ed at its elegance. I had never seen a wildflower like that (and my eyes are always peeled for wildflowers!). I was awed so much, I took plenty of photos which I can't help but share now.

Hopefully no one is bored to death with all the flower photographs I have been posting lately, but I can't think of a more inspiring subject than these bits of beauty come gently on the heels of old man winter. What a welcome change, to have fresh flowers to enjoy and admire, after such a cold winter...

When I posted a photo of this flower last week, I didn't know what it was. Then Kris told me it is the Trout Lily (thank you Kris-so glad you are back,btw!). My reference guide calls it an adders tongue.

And APPARENTLY, it is fairly common (or is supposed to be).

So yesterday I asked Corynn to show me where she plucked it from so that we might gather more for pressing and for a vase. We got a walk out of it, but never did find the flower.

Prevelant, my foot!

I did find, however, a patch of bluebells (or cowslips) hiding out down there!!!

Bluebells are magical; thry start out pink and gradually change to purple and then to a lavendar blue.

The petals in the last stage of growth are impossibly fragile and dainty.

You dare not breathe on them, so dainty are the bells and once picked you feel as though you must RACE to get them into water lest they wilt right there on the spot.

I gathered them, rejoicing in their discovery and in this maginificently flowered spring we are having.

Corynn, too, gathered to her hearts content, for a childrens' room bouquet.

I think them incredibly elegant and looking at them reminds me that lilac season is not so terribly far off!!

Life just got a whole lot more beautiful.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

On Plants

It's springtime, and very nearly GARDEN time. This fact, paired with my recent goal to include more variety into our schooldays, resulted in this experiment completed nearly four weeks past.

"What would the effect be on white carnations, if they "drank" up colored water?!"

It reiterated color concepts as we mixed food coloring into various colors.
It confirmed the purpose of stems as "pipelines" for nutrients. (They DID change color)
It got us out from behind books and into the "lab room", aka kitchen.

It was the impetus behind child-made hypotheses like "If we split the stem in two, will one flower suck up two different colors?" (It did.) or "If we create purple using red and blue, will the petals show the separated colors or just purple? (Just purple).

It added vibrancy to the window, especially around 5:00pm.

It required me to buy fresh flowers at the store. My arm is still sore from all the twisting.

Lots more plant resources to come...

Retrospective: the good, the bad, and the beautiful

As the end of the school year approaches, my thought have turned toward some retrospection. For several weeks now I have really been considering how this school year has gone~ where my weaknesses (they are many!) are, what needs to change all the while actively giving thanks for those things that are really going well.

My conclusion to all this retrospect is...I STINK at this whole homeschooling thing! ha, ha (I think.)

But seriously.

I just found a notebook I had prepared for myself in 2005, when Corynn was three. In it, I had carefully outlined my goals for her entire kindergarten/first grade experiences. I had typed out memorization exercises, poems and stories all recommended by A Well-Trained Mind and from Veritas Press.

It was laughable how far I am from that list. Well, laughable in the sense that if I didn't laugh I might cry.

Though my plans for this year included lots of memorization, science experiments, an art/craft program, a study of famous artists and painters, the beginning of the Story of the World history program, and a plethora of nature readers/projects, my focus has been so intent on math and reading this year that I am sorry to say most of all that wonderful "fluff" never even happened. Or happened very inconsistently.

Sure we did craft projects and there was PLENTY of drawing on a daily basis---but what about studying Rembrandt?! Sure we listened to Mozart---but WHAT ABOUT making his biography?!? Sure, the children know all about our current president---but WHY do they not have the first 15 memorized?! I am, of course, being a bit facetious, but I truly *DO* find value in these "extraordinary" things and know my children could be happily challenged with subjects OTHER than math and reading. Truth is, I have fallen short in those areas.

But for each evening dimmed by failures, a morning arises of fresh mercies.

For a few weeks now, I have been diligently trying to broaden my scope of teaching and we are all the better for it. I feel more capable of picking up the slack and working determinedly these last few months of school.

Though I can not muster schooling through the summer in the same capacity as educating in the winter (impossible with my gardening/harvesting/preserving chores that keep me in the kitchen or garden all day), I do hope to implement a more consistent, relaxed approach during this summer to feature some of the wonderful bits I missed out on these last few months. Not tedious book work, but truly inspiring education.

That is my goal. For the next few weeks I will be scratching out plans and trying to discover ways to do just that in a way that will be both probable to achieve and delightful to enact.

Lest all this talk of "not enough" is giving the wrong impression~ all is not failure!

Corynn started out the year struggling over itty bitty Bob books. I remember closing my eyes and counting just to keep my sanity as she stared blankly (and indefinitely) at the sounds we had just been working on, trying to figure out how to say them. I remember biting my tongue while thinking "WHY are you not GETTING this?!? We have been over this 100 times!." and wondering (silently) which of us was the incompetant.

I knew it had to be me. I knew I just had to be an awful teacher. I just KNEW I was NOT cut out for this whole homeschooling thing.

Problem is...it's the only option for our family. If I was a bad teacher, well then, I had better buck up and learn how to be a good one, because this is the (excellent) plan that is going to be carried out for our children. Ready or not.

So I swallowed my tongue, sat on my hands, and plastered a smile on my face while I internalized my fears and just kept trudging through.

I am happy to report those little leaves that began with titles like Mat the Cat have evolved into books about Anne Bradstreet, The Black Plague, the Wright Brothers, Cyrus the Archer, Queen Elizabeth and the like.

5 page books with approximately 1.3 words per page, those books that nearly made me lose my MIND with impatience, are now replaced with chapter books like Magic Tree House.

My girl is six, not impressively young for learning to read. I know several three year olds who are already reading (pshaw!) which doesn't exactly help with the feelings of inadequacy and some six year olds who are reading 6th grade material (double pshaw!!), but what I see when I stop looking at everyone else and start looking at my girl is this:

  • A girl who is curling up throughout the day to read her own books on her own time, just because she wants to.

  • A girl who can add voices and inflection to her reading, really becoming a PART of the story.

  • A girl who will read to brother and sister in the backseat of the car and have them rivoted.

  • A girl whose wardrobe of imagination as been opened, and her mind is being ignited at the possibilities bound between pages . The magic is HAPPENING. My goal is being FOUND.

  • A girl who asks a question then finds a book to answer it.

  • I have discovered a girl who has a *LOVE* of reading, a PASSION for learning, and ultimately, that has been my hope all along.

SO-even though Mozart didn't get his biography and the children haven't built replica's of the Nile, I won't be too hard on myself. I feel success.

Home education for us has never been about having the most intelligent child on the planet. It has been about instilling a LOVE and passion for learning the TRUTH (and being inspired by it); a philosophy that will endure a lifetime.

And I see these things happening despite my own inadequacies. Praise God.

Monday, April 19, 2010


I realized tonight, I had missed out on recording some fun things that happened lately. Consider this a Catch-Up post. Catching up... with lots of jibber jabber mixed in.

  • We have weekly library trips. Usually Mondays. Sometimes, Thursdays. And sometimes, when we are feeling REALLY crazy (or if some requests have arrived) we will pop in more than once. But we haven't gone in two weeks and I returned all of our books except four that last trip. Our USUAL running tally of borrowed books totters around the 30's. (Our librarians threw the loan limits out the window with us, nice gals they are.) Needless to say, our library basket stared back at us forlorn and sad until I couldn't take it anymore. We went today. We now have 39 borrowed books to hold us over. Until next week.
  • Adele fell face first out of her boosterseat onto the hardwood floor two days ago and now sports a lovely blue/purple gooseegg on her swollen forehead. I can only imagine the tongues wagging if I were to post photos of the dear in her present state, right on the heels of those discipline posts! YIKES!
  • My first flower present of the year and, though I don't know what it is, it beats the pants off of a dandelion! Corynn said she found it "in the woods". You'll see more of this beauty another day.

  • The following conversation REALLY happened.
MAMA: Talking about who knows what (as usual)
ANDREW: "Mama?" "How do words get in your belly?"or more accurately, "How words get in your beyyey?"
MAMA (utterly confused): "WHAT?!?"
ANDREW: "How words get in me beyyey so me can spit dem back up?"

  • So did this one:
After a coughing fit, Andrew says "Me dink me have a beaver in me droat."
  • Corynn asked me to take a picture of her hands folded in front of her one day. So I did. (I never ask questions.)

  • Several weeks ago, Corynn and Grandma hosted a "tea party". Of course, since we are the only ones bearing babies (on purpose) on that side of the family, the official guests were all adult. But Corynn got to wear a fancy dress, a shawl and a pin and got to eat tea cakes to her hearts content. Nothing could have pleased her more.

  • Have you ever had a cow eat laundry off your line? I have. It isn't pleasant. Especially since it was half the load. Most especially because of the regurgitated "cud" he rather meticulously worked into the fabric. Yes. I was pleased. SO very, very pleased.

  • Speaking of mischevious animals-what about chickens inside your house?! Don't ask.
  • The weather was nice. We ate lunch outside. Miss Adele' got swallowed by a chair. (But seemed to enjoy it.)

  • On Saturday night, Matt surprised me by calling his parents very spontaneously and asking them to watch the children so we could go out together before THIS week. They did (!!) and we went. It was incredibly special to me for him to do that. Unfortunately, this wife of a farmboy is allergic to cows (which isn't too bad if I wash up immediately after direct contact (that would be chores)) and we drove in his work vehicle which, incidentally, is laden with cow dander and farm smells. I was a dripping, sopping, sneezing dope all through dinner. I drenched three hankies and could barely keep my eyes open when we got home. Such an attractive presentation, no? I am really elegant that way.
  • Many weeks ago, before the weather was nice enough to turn the cows out to pasture, Matt left me a wee little lovey note. I don't have to go to the barn for chores anymore, but sometimes I do anyway.

  • It is now 1:43 am. I just finished hemming up some curtains and now sit, eyes bloodshot and neck stiff at the computer blogging. I bet you can guess how much I enjoy going to bed when Matt is gone.
I had better skee-daddle though, because in about 7 hours, someone is coming to pick UP said curtains and I can't be in bed when they arrive. (sadly)


What a week!

(and it has only JUST begun!)

I am a single parent (AGAIN) this week as work has taken Mattie to New Hampshire until Friday. (*sniff)

So...while he gets to stay in luxurious hotels (by luxurious I mean...with ideal temperature heating/cooling controls) and eating at fancy restaurants (by fancy I mean, getting food served to you with no dishes to wash afterwards) I will be here. Alone.

Tending to children.
And chickens.
And calves.
Making meals to sit at an empty-headed table.
Singing to Smooch.
Doing laundry.
Working on a church directory for (you guessed it!) our church.
Finding something RED.
Cleaning a church-NOT ours (twice) and mending curtains-not mine.
Modifying our budget (again!).
Making some pillowcases.
Cleaning my bedroom.
Packing away the 7/8th of the closet that no longer fits me.
Starting a new family read aloud.
Falling asleep, alone.

and no doubt, blogging a lot more since my nights will have such a deep, lonely void in them. SO-don't get sick of me or anything.

I don't plan on saying anything even remotely controversial. Promise. ;-)

~ all photos taken of the most stunning tree (anyone know what kind?) in our libraries' yard. ~