Thursday, April 29, 2010


Yes, that's right. We are done. All done. Done packing the house. Done unpacking the house into a storage unit (oops, too much stuff, better make it two storage units). Done wiping and scrubbing and dusting and vacuuming and throwing away. Done weeding and cutting and culling.
Later today I meet the carpet cleaners at the house and then turn the keys (and gas and carpet cleaning receipts) in to the Realtor. And say a loud GOODBYE HOPE TO NEVER SEE YA AGAIN to The Big Bad Wolf aka Property Management.
Thanks to the gargantuan efforts of many helpers in this church, we are on the next stage of being a part of the next church. Ethan's last ordination test is Saturday. Then we shout a loud HALLELUJAH and head for Staunton (by way of Highland County, where we'll be for about a month).
We're getting there!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Gospel Truth



Earlier this week, my children decided to put on some temporary tattoos. The girls decorated their cheeks with glittery butterflies, and the boys snazzed up their bellies with dinosaurs. As I was helping the girls with their hair before church this morning, I decided the haggard butterfly remains should probably be scrubbed away. “They’re kind of messy and don’t really look like butterflies anymore,” I explained. “We don’t want them to be distractions in church.” (I’m holy like that.)


So at the fellowship time after Sunday School, the older twins’ Sunday School teacher said she had a story for me.


Today in Sunday School, they were reviewing the gospel story. “I was really getting into the story: Jesus died for us on the cross and rose again. This is the most important story! This is the heart of the Bible! This is where it’s at!” when she saw Miriam’s (4) arm shoot up. “Yes, Miriam?”


“I had a butterfly tattoo on my cheek but Mama scrubbed it off but you can still see some of the glitter. Can you see the glitter? But I don’t have my tattoo anymore.”


The teacher was trying to steer Miriam back to the lesson when she saw Abraham (4) lifting his blue plaid button-down shirt, exposing one pale, pudgy belly with a wrinkled dinosaur. “But I still have mine!”



Saturday, April 24, 2010

Update on Packing

Well, we met our goal! (Or will have, by the end of the day.) Sue has come, whirlwound her way through the kitchen with three of her girls, and left. MY KITCHEN IS PACKED. Can you believe it? I can't. Except for what's in the fridge and what's in the dishwasher, my kitchen is packed. Oh, my!


The china cupboard is packed.


The girls' closet is packed. The boys' closet is packed. The downstairs bathroom closet is almost packed. And I've started on our bedroom closet.


Oh, and Sue's girls gave me a head start on the downstairs, so the desk is packed and two bookshelves are packed.


And once again, I'm reminded that a big hamper to packing progress is children. Although, to be fair, my oldest was gone (sleepover at his cousin's), and my next oldest proved herself to be a capable packer and labeler. She can pack almost as fast as her siblings can unpack.



Crazy Busy





This coming week, really starting today, is going to be frantic.


We have to be out of our house by Friday. But really, we have to be out by Wednesday because the carpet cleaners (who must be hired per terms of the lease) are coming Thursday. So today, while Ethan drives to his preaching engagement in Staunton, my Good Friend Sue is coming to help me pack. And anyone who knows Sue knows that I've got a gold mine of a friend. Things will get packed.


I'm putting her to work in the kitchen while I attack closets. Kitchen, closets, and china cabinet are today's goals.


I know it's counterintuitive to START with the kitchen, but my personal experience has been that the kitchen takes the longest to pack. I think it's a mental thing. I've still got all my detailed boxes from moving in ("large plates, medium plates, honey crock, pottery crock with lid") that she can just refill. We'll survive on paper plates and disposable silverware (that we wash until we're ready to go, of course).


And if I can attack the china cabinet (which, really, is a 10-minute job) and closets, we'll have done a mighty work. Then tomorrow after church I can piddle around with the downstairs desk and items on the three downstairs bookshelves (it's very little).


Ethan stays in Staunton for the home inspection (!!! hurrah !!!) Monday, then comes home to pick up the U-Haul. We pack it like mad and then the prayer group ladies are joining in a cleaning frenzy on Wednesday.


Friday we rest (right?) and Saturday is Ethan's ordination exam on the floor of presbytery. And then we head for the rustic retreat center, where we will camp for a month or so until we close on the house.


Someone get me a double cappuccino, quick!



Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Seconds, anyone?


Today was one of those days where half an hour after supper should have been finished, you stand dazed in front of the open refrigerator door waiting for a blast of cold air to inspire you with an outstanding, easy and quick gourmet dish that can be made with the half a ham that has been taking up the fridge for the last three weeks. Or maybe even four. And then after scouring the Internet for WAY TOO LONG you find out that there’s really nothing that can be done with the ham if you don’t have the stamina for rolling out crusts or if you don’t have potatoes. But you THINK you have potatoes and start boiling celery and carrots and then realize the only potatoes you have are sweet, and instead of pineapple juice you have orange, and so yes you are halfway through the recipe when you realize you are mentally (and cuisine-ally?) mixing two different recipes with your substitutions but life’s an adventure so what the heck!!!??!!!


Right, kids? Gagging is an adventure! Live it up, Abraham! (But keep it down.)


And as you scrape the remaining two-thirds of the dish into the garbage because (shocker) no one took seconds, you smile (or was that a grimace?) at the thought of all the money you’re saving.


You know. One of THOSE days.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

I could just eat her up ...




... and I know she'd taste like sherbet.



Friday, April 9, 2010

Breaking my arm patting my back

Yessirreebob, that's me. Homeschoolblogger Blogger of the Week.


I'm not sure whether to take this as a compliment or as a shot in the arm to err... um ... get  blogging. Because, you know, I consider it a major accomplishment to blog once a week, and very little of my content has to do with homeschooling (unless you consider HOME to be the class and ME to be the student). Kind of like the award you give to the kid you most need to impart a little effort. Or like the individualized letters my English professor handwrote for each of her students. Mine said, "You have a zest for life." My husband's said, "You're such a trooper." Hee, hee.


But I am smiling. Someone besides my dad (who, by the way, is YessirreeBob) read my blog!


And Benjamin (8) will be quite impressed. Would it be going overboard to laminate it and display it on the fridge?




Friday, April 2, 2010



We’re headed to Staunton tomorrow, where we’ll spend the night at the house of some Very Fun People and then attend brunch and worship at Staunton OPC.


That means all festivities have to happen today.


So far, we’ve dyed Easter eggs. Surprisingly, there were no tears, and the children (almost all of them) enjoyed a hard-boiled egg with lunch.






Aaaah, the signs of spring: deeply brown-eyed boys in yellow jumpers with running noses and blue lips from trying the dye water (didja enjoy that vinegar?):



And what is it about pink and orange that seem so RIGHT together today?



Trying the "fruits" of our labors:




And we'll just put that right here along with the rest of the lunch rejects:



And to the disgust of our father, we'll lick the rest of the mayonnaise off of our finger. 



We’ve got some baking to do (and I’m still trying to decide how big of a “we” this is going to be), and I’m muddling over the logistics of doing an egg hunt in the back yard. Oh, and what we’re going to have for supper.


And whether “cleaning out the van” counts as a festivity.


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