Friday, January 17, 2014

Six Years Old

When is a six year old girl cute?

She is cute when she's dressed for ballet class--pink tights, black leotard, ballet slippers, hair in a bun. So cute.

A six year old is cute when she is missing her front teeth. Adorable.

A six year old is cute when she makes her dolls talk to each other. Precious.

A six year old is cute when she has curlers in her hair. Charming.

A six year old is cute when she reads on the sofa upside down. Amusing.

A six year old is cute when she runs around the house in a fancy dress and fairy wings. Very cute.

A six year old is cute when she is bundled up against the cold. Puffy, pink, and cute.

I had better enjoy it while I can, because I will have a six year old for only two more days. Laura's birthday is on Sunday, and since she is my baby, we will be leaving this stage forever. I know good times are ahead, but I'll miss the cute and cuddly phase. 


Friday, January 10, 2014

Bluestem Reading

I so admire my daughter's drive. When Juliet sets a goal, she sticks with the task until she completes it. Where does she get this? You can be sure it's not from me. My last post illustrates my tendency to get all excited about a plan then fail to follow through.

Yesterday, Juliet decided she would read all of the Bluestem nominees for 2014. This is a list of twenty titles--mostly chapter books of at least 140 pages. She will get a little prize at school for reading them and will get to participate in a raffle. 

She almost achieved this same goal last year. I was so proud of her, especially when she pushed through books she didn't really like. 

Juliet persuaded Paul to take her to the library yesterday so that she could borrow all the Bluestem books before anyone else could get to them. Since then, she has been hiding out in her room reading madly. 

If only I could imitate her drive and tenacity. I might actually accomplish something.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

I'm Crafty

This is how I do crafts: 

  • Step One: I buy craft supplies.
  • Step Two: I bring them home and put them in a cabinet.

Sometimes I vary Step Two a little by leaving my purchases in a a bag on the floor of my bedroom instead of putting them in the cabinet.

I have a crafting impulse and just a little skill, but not enough tenacity to follow through with planned projects. Here's a small sampling of aborted projects.

The plan here was to make a nightgown for Caroline's birthday. It didn't happen. I hope it eventually does happen, because that fabric was expensive.

Originally, this was supposed to be a tiered skirt for Caroline, but then I decided to make the nightgown instead. So then I thought I'd make the skirt for Laura. She likes kitties, too.

Juliet told me that she wanted a Christmas dress that wasn't distinctively Christmassy so that she could wear it longer. That seemed reasonable to me, so I thought I would make her a T-shirt dress with a tiered skirt.  Good thing it's not Christmassy at all since Christmas is now in the past.  

This yarn will make a pretty winter hat for Juliet. Eventually.

I can't remember why I bought these wooden butterflies. Laura and Caroline's room is decorated with a butterfly theme, so maybe I intended to use them for something in there. 

I don't have a clear plan for these. They were in the remnant bin and I couldn't resist. I thought maybe I could set them aside for the kids' projects. That way, they'll stay out of my craft cabinet. I have plans for all that stuff, you see.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Baby It's Cold Outside

It's almost eight o'clock in the morning, and my street is quieter than I've ever heard it. Usually, by this time it's one car after another as everyone hurries to work or to school. But today, I mostly hear silence broken only by the occasional car.

People are staying home today because of the weather. It's cold out there. According to the websites I'm reading, the temperature is about -14 and the wind chill is around -40. The schools in our town (including the college where my husband works) are closed as is the library where I was scheduled to work this morning. People in some communities to the north live in conditions like these all the time, but this is unusual for us. So we are staying inside. My kids get a day added to their winter break. 

I complain of winter every year. I dislike the snow--I think it's a nuisance and a hazard. I don't like being cold. I don't like the extra ten minutes I have to add to our getting-ready-to-go time for our kids to bundle up. I don't like the soggy boots that block my front door. I don't like the salt all over my car. Yet there's something appealing about this extreme cold. I get a cozy, secure feeling from being inside while the weather rages beyond my window. I'm happy to be in my little house with a quilt and a cup of tea. Of course, I'd be happier if it were springtime, but I must acknowledge the pleasure of being snug and safe. 

On another note, I'm worrying about homeless people today. We have a couple of them that spend a lot of their time at the library, and I hope they are okay. A church nearby offers shelter to the homeless, but at least one that I know rejects offers of help from churches. Whether he likes it or not, I'm praying for him today.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, gentle readers!

Are you making resolutions or setting goals for 2014? I don't usually make resolutions for two reasons. First of all, like most people, I almost always fail at keeping them. I don't need that self-image crusher. Second, I don't really feel that January 1st is a new beginning. Pretty much everything in our lives stays the same. For me, the start of a new year is September. My children and my husband are all on academic schedules, so that's when everything starts over--we have new classes, new shoes, new after-school lessons, and new haircuts. That always seems a more appropriate time to make life changes. 

When I told my husband about my perspective on the new year, he observed that it's nice to have two new beginnings each year--two opportunities to reset our lives.

With that mind, I thought I would set three goals for 2014. 

  1. I would like to re-lose the weight that I lost in 2012 and regained in 2013. This is exactly the sort of New Year's resolution that typically fails. It is non-specific and lacks a clear plan of action. I don't care. I'm setting this goal anyway. 
  2. I want to make a few small changes to this blog, specifically pages and labels.
  3. I want to organize my bedroom in such a way that I can easily keep it neat and organized. 

We'll see how it goes.

What plans do you have for the year? Let's talk about them in comments. I hope to hear from you. Have a great 2014!