Monday, May 30, 2011


In Flanders Fields
by John McCrae, May 1915

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

During the Second Battle of Ypres (before the Americans had even joined the war, but hundreds of thousands of French, English and Canadian soldiers had died) a Canadian artillery officer, Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, was killed on 2 May, 1915 by an exploding shell. He was a friend of the Canadian military doctor Major John McCrae.

John was asked to conduct the burial service owing to the chaplain being called away on duty elsewhere. It is believed that later that evening John began the draft for his famous poem 'In Flanders Fields'. This poem made poppies a symbol of remembrance.

Memorial Day is much more than just a three day weekend, a chance to grill or the start of summer. Pause to remember how much you have to be grateful for--because of men and women who gave up their future to ensure you would have a bright one.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Free at Last!

BigGirl and LargeBoy got their final assignments submitted before the 11:59 deadline.
Yep, 11:58 (and probably 45 seconds!)
--nothing like cutting it close!

I am so happy to be done with public schooling (even the online version) and its twisted version of "learning"--it must be quantifiable, track-able, painful and convoluted--preferably with LOTS of busywork. OH so much busywork.

BigGirl and I spent hours going through her science textbook, working on Newton's laws, simple machines, etc. The dry explanations went in one ear and out the other--even with me reading them aloud so she could concentrate on comprehension instead of decoding. When I mentioned that she could gain a thorough understanding of the concepts by sitting down for an
enjoyable read with some wooly mammoths, she was delighted (and relieved!).

As humans, we don't learn alone. We discuss and compare ideas and concepts and build on the breakthroughs we share. Our culture's learning paradigm is broken.

Whew! Glad we are finally free!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Poem for Springtime

Why, oh why
must all the junebugs
come to die
in my bathtub?

Monday, May 23, 2011

What a weekend!

I just love weddings! Truly--since I have attended well over 75, and have been an active participant (doing anything from hand lettering the invitations to sewing the wedding dress to all of the decorations) in over 30, I have a LOT of experience in this area!

This weekend was my cousin Brandon's wedding. It was very lovely. It was small and intimate, and fun (pretty much a perfect combination!). The bride was lovely, and the more I spend time with her, the more I like her (I had only met her in passing, so I didn't have any real opinion about her, but I think they will be great together!) They had the ceremony outside, but all the guests were in a gazebo, so we were in the shade. And the weather was nice--for the first time in WEEKS!

However, as excellent as the wedding was, the really great part was getting to spend time with my cousins and dear friends. YAY! People I love came from (literally) all over the country to be together. Portland Oregon, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, it was so great to have everybody together.

Now I need to go catch up on my sleep!

Sunday, May 8, 2011


Sorry for the "radio silence" but a whole lot has been happening. Including, but not limited too:
BigGirl spending 12 straight days unable to keep anything down.
Visit to Doctor.
Visit to Emergency Room.
IV Liquids.
No real idea of why.
My doctor visit (which I promised long ago to update upon).
I suspect I am having thyroid issues. Thyroid is notoriously hard for doctors to diagnose, because it mimics many other things but mainly because the range of "normal" is so @!#$%^&* huge (really, a range of 0.5 to 5.5) so what is perfectly "normal" can be seriously out of whack for your body, and they just can't tell!
(By the way--my test results came back *cough* "Normal").

New Chicks (around 35 or 40--hard to keep track) of various types (more variety than ever before--really fun!).
A visit from 2 really cute baby goats (they stayed at our house for 2 weeks).
Visits from lots of family we love.
Easter, Traditional (very fun) Easter Egg hunt and family dinner (at our house).
Birthday Party (quite a long time after the fact, due to scheduling issues) for LargeBoy. The party was awesome--almost zero work for me (which worked out nicely, since that was the day I was in the ER with BigGirl).
AND my debut party for my new business.

For those of you who have been waiting breathlessly for details:

I am now an official Consultant for Essential Bodywear.
(crickets chirping)
"I am officially a Bra Lady!" Yep. I can measure and do fittings, and I sell great bras (and other "foundation garments"). We had our first "Bra Party" and it was great!

In keeping with my tradition of "having a Mother's Day"--boy have I had one. I dared to try to take a nap, and SmallDaughter got into the shower and poured 3 bottles of shampoo (the Suave [for the family hair], the Bath & Bodyworks [my own personal expensive splurge--big sigh], and the Head & Shoulders [for certain adolescent type people]--[which is also not fun to clean up--trust me]) AND a container of purple cookie frosting (not from the shower--from the deeply forbidden, high up cupboard of doom--er expensive, yummy ingredients) onto the floor. There were also a dozen potatoes and a bottle of windex involved. Yep, "A Mother's Day" indeed.