Wednesday, June 29, 2011

shut doors and open windows.

I can't change time.

I can accept the fact that I am pregnant. All summer long. And I'll be OK with taking it easy.

I can't paint the walls.

I can be happy renting a home.

I can't have my dream yard today, for entertaining and such.

I can plant, and water, and sing to flowers in my borrowed yard, all the while learning.

I've spent a lot of time thinking, "what's the point of investing time, effort, and money in a garden that we'll only eventually leave?"

But lately I've realized it's no different than tuition paid to a school. Effort exerted in a classroom. Time handed to homework.

Today, during the boys' naps, I measured the yard and plotted the ground. It's been therapeutic to chart the things that I can't change (paths, trees, bushes, etc.) and then to look over the many areas I can.

The yard is my oyster.

I am so thankful for the hobbies that give us peace of mind and help us to learn the big lessons in little ways.

Monday, June 27, 2011


Here are a few forgotten photos, taken nearly a year ago and made to wait on an undeveloped roll. Yum.

Run free, little memories!

Oh, happy day. I love tiny surprises.

developing magic.

Moments before we arrived at the photography store, I looked down to see Sparky unraveling a roll of film. I was irritated, but then I thought, "why wouldn't he? How would he know anything about film if I've not taught him?" Even with old, 35mm film cameras he pretends to take a picture and shows me the back afterward as if the picture will appear, saying, "look at how nice that one was, mom."

Thankfully I stuffed the exposed roll in my purse just in time to save a few gems. I can't help loving the lady at the shutterbug who watched the boys for a second while I wound it back tight in the dark-room.

I really forgot how much I love film.

Maybe I love the danger involved. We could lose every moment if the settings are wrong. (Or if kids meddle a bit.)

Maybe it's the mystery. What was on that roll? I forget.

Maybe it's because Duke and my dating days were almost entirely consumed in film development. There was hardly a week that went by without an attached roll of film. And since we worked at a photography store, the whole process was in our hands.

I am thankful that I was born when I was; that I experienced the joy of film before falling in with the convenience of digital.

I think fondly of the time I spent behind a counter, watching as people excitedly opened their pictures, not knowing what to expect. Sometimes they were disappointed, but mostly they laughed and smiled over forgotten moments, captured as if by magic.

Magic. Yes, that's exactly the reason that I love film.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

rock the dock.

The hunt is on. We need the perfect family swimming spot.

Here's how Silverton Reservoir panned out...

Beautiful scenery with plenty of shade. POINT.

Tiny trails bordering the water that made running into strangers awkward and having a young, stupid dog with no manners around dangerous. BOO.

Sharp drop-off into deep water. MINUS.

Short driving distance away. CHIH-CHING.

Visible tadpoles and fish. RIGHT ON.

A general muddy-murkiness with hidden sharp rocks. GONG.

Cool dock that toddlers are overly attracted to and almost fall off of every few seconds. NO THANKS.

Practically a giant ant-hill. PPLLLTT(or however you write the sound of someone blowing a raspberry)!

Family fun / kids good and tired. YEAH-BUT. We can find that pretty-much anywhere...

37.5% effective swimming spot for our family's particular needs at the current juncture.

Now if Duke and I were looking for a good spot by a lake to make-out then that is a TOTALLY different story. Oh wait, except for those dumb ants.

This is the beginning of a serious scouting operation. Does anyone around here have any leads?

PS- a few more pictures here.

Grandma Re's visit

Ten things that I absolutely love about my mother-in-law Marie...

1. She has a beautiful, childlike love for carousels. She collects porcelain, musical, carousel horses and any time we are in Nevada to see her the boys insist that she wind them all up. It was a joy watching her eyes light up at the sight of the spinning splendor during her short visit.

2. She always seems to be laughing. And it's contagious. She's the best card-buddy, making every game a total riot with her wonderful sense of humor.

3. She only has eyes for her grandsons; the very definition of a doting grandma. I am so comforted knowing that they have her to love them.

4. She's a no-nonsense person with gumption and guts. She will tell people exactly what she is thinking. I like that, a lot. I'm the same way, and I know how much trouble it can cause sometimes, but ultimately I think it's better to be open and honest, even with differing opinions.

5. She keeps a welcoming and lovely home. I hope I can build a home like hers with invitation written all over it. She cooks like a dream and is a great example to me of a true hostess.

6. When something needs to get done, she just does it. No whining. Once we drove down for a visit and our headlight was out. It had been out for months, horribly neglected, so we weren't that concerned. She drove us directly to a parts-store and helped us to change it, practically the moment we arrived. She passed a lot of that "go-get-um" on to her son, thankfully.

7. She likes what she likes. She is secure in what she likes. She does what she likes because it makes her happy and she doesn't (I don't think, but of course I'm no mind-reader) give a lot of thought to what other people think. Maybe some of that extreme confidence will rub off on me.

8. She plays. She jumps on a trampoline. She lays on the floor with the kids. She is a kid-at-heart. I love that.

9. She is so much fun to watch when she's with her husband Walt. They are in love. They tease one another in a teenage sort-of way. She takes care of him and he takes care of her. I'm pretty sure that she saved him and he saved her. I love them together.

10. She raised THE man of my life. So much of him came from her. Having boys now (wanting for them, worrying about them, and helping them grow) has helped me to understand, in part, what she did for my husband. He loves, honors, and respects me, not by accident. I know she taught him how to behave to a woman. I will forever love Marie for the boy she raised into a man.

So glad Grandma Re was able to fly up here for a visit. Wishing for a swift reunion.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

For you, my love.

You wake up with the kids each morning, feed them breakfast and get them settled, just so that I can get a little bit of extra sleep.

You do virtually all of the family's grocery shopping in what you could easily claim as your "down-time," since you know what a chore it is for me to take the kids during the day.

You want to give me everything, but you've learned how to tell me "no" sometimes, because you see the big-picture me and you know my weaknesses. You want me to be long-term happy.

You've changed as many, if not more diapers than I have.

You play the kid way, especially when I can't, letting them climb all over you and making an effort to get interested in what they're interested in.

You encourage me to take time away, and you don't complain about the responsibility. Ever.

You are a dad in all the best ways.

I read this article and thought "I am the luckiest woman alive" since you are the exact opposite from the men described throughout. You are everything I could ever hope for in the father of my children.

You are my companion, my mate, my true love.

Happy Father's Day, baby.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

songs with first names.

My early summer has been completely consumed in helping plants and children grow.

There has also been some room for music appreciation. I believe every season of life needs a soundtrack. Right now I am digging songs that are written for and about specific people with their names included in the verses. These personal melodies just seem sweeter and more honest than regular, generic love-songs, methinks.

The Beatles are king in this category. Oh, the hearts they must have broken! Michelle. Julia. Rita.
Martha. And so, so many more.

Then there's Ben Folds. Wow, what a lover of women, but mostly a teller of relationship reality from a man's eyes. Emaline. Kate. Annie. Jane. The list goes on, and all perfect gems.

Oh, there's the classic 80s lady, Eileen. I'm also loving a song by a band called Canoe titled "Anxious Jenny." But I can't seem to find it to share with ya'll.

Anyway, I'm off to water my children and play with the garden.

Or something like that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

love them sisters.

Emily had her last day of school yesterday. She just got her bike out for business. Watch out, pedestrians.

Tamsin just tried out for the cheer-leading squad on a whim. She totally made it. Watch out, boys.