Sunday, April 22, 2012

Against the Wind...

Ever feel as if you are running against the wind?  Swirls of activities, chores, decisions, demands, desires, disappointments, -----  all challenges to be met with grace, cheer, and confidence....  Sometimes the spirit simmers on low flame...  Melancholy rain and Missouri prairie winds....  Time to work, pray and persevere.....  even if all I'm feeling is a big long sleep.  Have a blessed Sunday and a good week!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Saturday....a day of soups, storms, and stories...

It's a stormy Saturday, so Mom and I stayed in all cozy. We watched our cooking shows, which can prove to be a scary thing! I decided to stir up a little Italian Tomato Soup, Tuscan Grilled Cheese.... Poor Mom! She is still washing dishes! I had to blend the tomatoes, sauté the minced garlic, grate the Parmesan, ---- and then, the grilling had to be perfect to melt the Farmer cheese and brown the bread.... I liked the soup. It was really tart with a squeeze of lemon at the last... Mom batted her baby blues for a couple teaspoons of sugar in hers... hey, Mr. Campbell's.... Your job is secure! Stay warm and cozy. I Was graciously invited to give the commencement address for this year... I'm working on a speech that features each student, and I am crafting a gift for each of them. Today I am making notes... Have a great weekend!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

 We spent a quiet, happy day with Mom, my son, and I....
 My dear friend Patty brought these butterfly napkin rings yesterday!  Love them!

 My strawberries were too wonderfully huge to look like carrots, despite the orange tint....  but oh, so yummy for a lighter dessert.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Two roads... or go back.

I took the back way to  town yesterday to get my Easter groceries.  Just a little way farther down this road, I came to a fork..  One way was too filled with ruts, no gravel...  it looked bleak.  The other was well paved but clearly marked, "Dead End.  Private Property.  Do Not Trespass."  So, as in life, I doubled back the way I had come and retraced that road back into oh-so-familiar territory....  So, Mr, Frost, there remained a third choice that day in your yellow wood, right?

That doubling back, revamping, and going again...and often again.... that is such a metaphor for my life as I rededicate, turn around, avoid the difficult, almost impassable paths and also the attractive drives that are evidently not meant for me,  and make my way past well-worn and familiar.  Sunshine and shadow, the good Lord leads us through.

 The Road Not Taken
 Robert Frost
TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;        
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,        
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.        
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Hippity... Happy.... Hoppy....Holidaze?

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 Ah...  today at one o'clock our school dismisses for the Easter break we have all been waiting for!  The honor roll students just trundled off on a big, yellow school bus for a party at the principal's house...  and the rest of us are quietly ticking off the hours with a few worksheets, a couple of great books, and a little bit of anticipation for the taco salad we sense awaits in the cafeteria...  It's a cold, Easter-blustery day as so many Easters have been in my life...  We had been having unbelievably hot days, even in the 90's...  I'm not ready for that.  Even my little cold-natured Mama turned on the AC one night...  That's a first.  Mom turned it on before I did... Lucky me..  I have a very sweet but incredibly warm Easter sweater...  I got to wear it today because the weather cooperated this year.
 My "almost" son who lived with us for years and years is off on the adventure of a lifetime tomorrow.  My son takes him to the airport, and then...  my almost son will fly to Dublin, Ireland, to work on a home he will share with a new wife he met online...  Yep..  I am "amazed"... "gobsmacked" the bride to be would say....  We have shared a few holidays, Easters and Christmases with this young woman, and I hope they decide to put Missouri on their list to visit again..  Their wedding is in June in Florida on a beach...  How romantic!  Don't you love it?
 For our "last" meal together Tuesday evening, I fixed all the childhood favorites because this young man and my son have been best buddies since second grade.  They are an unlikely looking set of friends because my son is extremely tall and big-built, gentle and easy-going (on the surface, anyway) and the other is short and very fiery...  But in the long run they have had each other's backs and been quite good for each other.  It was always such a pleasure to have a house full of friends, watching television, working on cars, building a bomb in the basement... doing science projects for school....  They worked together in two workplaces and they are both so good to Mom and to me...
Easter's blessings, gifts of the gracious Lord who gave the greatest blessing so long ago, continue to inspire my heart.  I adore all seasons...  Each one brings a special tone to the world, creating one harmonious chord in our lives.  Easter's brightness is so cheerful, so hopeful...  Even though I do not get to travel to my sweet great-aunt's home to celebrate in Quincy as I did my entire young life, I plan to enjoy every moment...  Her home was a two-story town home, and one of my favorite parts besides her absolute "doting" on me and lovely Easter baskets...  was her carpeted stairway...  I loved to slide down that stairway, and just the other day my son shared that he remembered doing the exact same sliding-thing the three Easters he got to spend at Aunt Thelma's....  How cool is that?

I might even hide a few eggs for my grown up son...  In memory of my dad who always hid eggs in exactly the same places every year for his grown-up daughter and anyone else sharing the holiday..  There was always a  code, with certain colors of eggs worth more money than others...  It's worth the hunt, I'll tell you...  I think he enjoyed finding the ones we missed and having a little foil-wrapped chocolate treat through the rest of the month!  And of course, Mom and I will boil and dye eggs...  Nothing tastes as good as an Easter egg...  Boiled eggs are always yummy I think, but something about the little pink or baby blue peeking through the shell and dotting the whites...  it makes it all worth the annual wait...

They key to all of life is to enjoy it...  by helping others, of course...  but also by celebrating even if alone for few...  It is the only 57th Easter of my life I will ever have, so it has to be good.
With all the new flowers peeping through the ground and the gorgeous flowering trees around, I am more than happy to wish you all a Happy Easter and a beautiful holiday weekend.  A giant purple wisteria shakes its majestic branches over the top of my car parked outside my school window...  Nothing more is needed to complete the view from my classroom...  I mentally take a steaming cup of German Chocolate coffee out to the little bench I see tucked beneath that wisteria...  If you'll excuse me, I have some dreaming to do...  Take care!!!!