Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Northern Region Middle School Music Festival

She auditioned back here. in early January.

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For the auditions busses arrived from all over the state.

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She got in!

And this weekend was the festival.

She was bussed from her school on Friday afternoon to another town for a rehearsal until 8:30 pm.

We missed her and filled her snack bag with lots of love.

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And then again on Saturday morning she was bussed at 9 am until the concert at 3:30.

It was a lot for the conductors to fit in. Only a day and a half.

Four amazingly performed pieces of music. Just amazing.

And my girl was there. Wearing black and white as usual, coming on to the stage to find her seat with that serious look on her face.

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She thanked me that night for encouraging her to audition.

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It truly was a wonderful opportunity to work under such an accomplished group of dedicated, talented teachers and conductors.

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She was tired when it was over.

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(how cute are those little girls)

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And we were all beaming proud!

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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

How To Starch

I know, it's not your modern day blog post.  But I think it's one of those little things that make life lovely.

I've always loved linens.  And tea cups and flowered china plates and Beatrix Potter figurines and little vases on windowsills.

All things pretty.

I can remember way back when I was first married asking my mom for a certain April Cornell white linen square table cloth when I was 23 for Christmas.

I saw it in the store on display.  It was the only one left so you had to buy it off the table.  Back then there was no money at all for bringing home a white linen table cloth that we certainly didn't need.

But my mom got it for me and I still use it after twenty years.

Right now white linen on our kitchen (everyday) table is not practical on an everyday basis but I do use it on weekends, holidays, and when I feel like we just need something pretty in our day.

Because I can't use that one all the time I've found that little runners, or better yet small square or rectangle dresser linens can be used daily.

One of my favorites are a pair I found at an antique store over 10 years ago.  They have been on my tea table every day since then.

They are worn for sure. The little border is starting to come apart, but extra love and care for these has helped them to last for years.

I like my table linens to be crisp.  So I starch them.  None of that mamby pamby spray starch either.  The liquid kind works the best.

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I thought I'd show you what I do.

I start by washing them on gentle.  (dusty for tea being scooped)

When they come out of the wash I soak them in starch.  Like this.

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You have to read the side of the starch bottle to find out how much water to mix with the starch. I like mine really stiff so I go with the "heavy" equivalent.

I swish them around in the liquid making sure to cover all of the fabric. And then I ring them out to try to get all of the liquid out.

Then I let them air dry until they are almost dry / kind of damp.

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When they are almost dry I start to iron them. Takes no time at all and they come out so beautiful. Stiff and heavy.

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Ready for anywhere in my house. Especially my little tea table.

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And starching this way makes them last all new looking forever!

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A little linen hanging on the stove handle all crisp makes all the difference to me

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I love how it brings out the texture of the fabric.

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And makes it stand up so pretty!

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So there ya go! One little corner of my house that's ready for spring!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Before School, Before Hair, Before Teeth, During Breakfast



(in case you were wondering I am not a sparkle shirt kinda mom... more of a Peter Pan Collar and smocking mom... but she sure wanted this shirt from the Roald Dahl collection Boden)

Friday, March 24, 2017

"Something New"

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My feelings are so deep right now and I'm not sure I can remember her words.  I know I can't.

Except that they were beautiful.

Today was Abigail's last day with her 4th grade teacher.  We are thrilled that she is leaving to have a baby.  But today was so sad and wonderful all in one.

This teacher has been on this blog a lot.  Because she was Abigail's kindergarten teacher.  I did this first post about her waaaaay back here.  

And then that same year wrote about her again.

And on the last day of school in kindergarten was here.

I've spent a lot of time with this particular teacher over the two years Abigail had her.  (back here)

And was even there after she welcomed her first baby into the world.  (here)

I could write about her forever but with all of those (back here) links, I suppose I already have.

Today was really the last last time Abigail would call her 'teacher'.  And this teacher made it such an amazing last afternoon.

She assigned poems to all of the children.  They could memorize one, read one, write one.

Abigail chose to write one.

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It was titled "My Teacher" and it was from deep in her heart and filled with love.

I think she took this teacher by surprise as she read it today.

And I tried, oh how I tried not to cry. But I did.

These two are bonded deep. And do you know why? It's because this teacher loves all children and makes all children feel number one to her.

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She told us a story at Abigail's parent/teacher conference this month. She said that Abigail likes to sit right up close at read aloud time. And she stares at her teacher as if she's the only one. It's as if Abigail feels like it's just the two of them in the class. I love that.

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Today, this teacher read her favorite poem and allowed herself to cry in front of her class. Because she will miss them. At the end of the day she told them that this is like how seasons are. She said, "I love fall. I love to get out my sweaters, and take out all of my favorite teas. But I love winter too. I love snow days and that blanket of fresh snow. I love the spring when I open up the windows for the first time and smell that smell, what's that smell boys and girls? That's spring. But I love summer too. Even the sticky hot days. All of the seasons are good. And in each season there are changes that I love to make. I change out my jacket. I change my shoes. I change my food and I even change the things that are in my car. This is like a new season for you boys and girls. Just a new season. Summer is coming early, in a way to you. And with a new season there is something new. That something new is going to be wonderful. Just to see."

(focused in on the poem)

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Yes, these two are something special.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Eosinohpilic Esophogitis Check In

We spent some time yesterday at Abigail's EoE doctor.

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We made some decisions.  Some changes of medicines.  And a plan for the fall and next endoscopy.

When I drove Abigail to school later that day she was visibly upset and started crying.

It took a long time to get out of her what was making her so upset.

He didn't really mean it when he said, "what would you like to add?" (for a food)  It was just conversation.  But Abigail took it literally and was thinking.  About to tell him the food she'd like to add back in the conversation changed.

Scott and I didn't even notice it.  But she was very sad.

Dealing with a chronic disease has it's ups and downs.  Mostly ups for her recently but what we've noticed as she gets older is the emotional component that comes with walking with EoE.

In the beginning when she was a toddler it was about managing her food, the IV, hospital endoscopy appointments and such.

Recently its about managing the pain, the inconvenience of medicines, and not eating out or being 'food normal'.

I know for sure her dr wasn't about to add in a new food group.  But she for some reason had her heart set on adding one in.

At this point she doesn't know what ice cream tastes like, or food cooked with butter, movie popcorn, pizza, mac and cheese, yogurt, anything store bought, and on and on and on.  We are pretty sure she wouldn't even like those foods.  It's been her whole like.  But for her I would love to she her have the opportunity to have regular food.

So we love on her extra and walk through this EoE childhood with her, grateful for the gifts it's given us, the lessons we've learned along the way, and the strength of the Lord.

For now this remains...

no fish
no tree nuts
no peanuts
no soy
no dairy

and meds galore.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Before you know it

Last week a blizzard, yesterday melting snow, dripping off roofs, temps almost reaching 60 with the sunshine warming us from the inside out.  Today those same puddles from yesterdays slush are frozen again.  It's windy and oh so cold.

March is like that. 

But THIS is coming.
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Pool days, water dripping off her eyelashes day.

Warm in the sun days.  

I've said before here on this blog that I'm a winter girl.  I am for sure.  But every once in a while I accidentally see a picture like that and think, oh that, that might be nice! 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

On leaving them

I remember this day. I had gone to a play with my parents the evening before. Anna and Abigail were staying over at Uncle Trent and Auntie Jackie's house. All through the evening Trent was texting me funny pictures of my girls and the wonderful fun memories they were making.

But after the play (which was amazing "Show Boat" my all time favorite ever musical because my dad and I danced to that song on my wedding day 20 years earlier) Anyway... after the play I got a migraine. The kind of headache you get when you have to have your head between your legs while the car is moving.

Back then I literally got a huge headache every single time I left my girls. School was fine, that was a routine. But anything out of the routine I had a headache. Poor Scott!

That's when we started 'at home' date nights.

This is the picture I have from the next morning. After the sleepover, I went over to pick them up at dawn. Headache gone.

They are still in their nightgowns from Uncle Trent's house. And I look all better.

blog sleepover girls with me

I don't get migraines any more, but I still have anxiety leaving them. I'm not worried that something will happen. I'm not really a worrier. I was just missing them. Aching for them. So much so that I got those headaches.

One time my parents gave us a generous gift certificate for a restaurant for our anniversary. Right near their house. Perfect. The girls have dinner and some play time at grandma and grandpas, we go out to dinner.

But that time it (migraines) had happened so many times I took advil BEFORE I left them at my parents.

I don't have to take advil anymore when I leave them, but I'm still terrible at it. Still get that ache in my heart. Still can't wait to have them back home with me again.

I guess I knew this when I was younger. I couldn't go anywhere without my dolls. Always with me.

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I choose not to worry about the future and how I'll survive them growing up. I just smile and whisper in their ears "just stay little, just stay little, just stay little."
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