Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I was reading junkfood science this morning and it reminded me how much reading this blog has changed how I view things, weight in particular. The last three paragraphs (if you don't have time to read the whole post) encapsulate her stance. If nothing else it is interesting food for thought.
We have company this week so I may be a bit quiet the rest of the week. If I have time I'll post something. If not I'll be back on Tuesday with some show and tell. Happy Fourth of July!

Monday, June 29, 2009

I was sitting on the edge of my bed yesterday watching as Mowgli explained something to me and Bahgera concurred with one of her full body nods. Then it struck me, I have kids. Plural (not many plural granted, but plural none the less). I have two funny, interesting, frustrating, fantastic kids. Wow. Weird. Wow.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

All my inspiration of late seems to be coming from Basic Joy--no wonder, Annie is wonderfully thoughtful and expressive. Yesterday's post was about Charlie's Angels and Farrah Fawcett. I don't remember much of Charlie's Angels except that we still love to strike the Angels pose when we can (my sisters and I). It did get me thinking though. What TV shows had an impact on my childhood? That's limited as we had TV very sporadically so what I saw generally occurred at at other people's homes. (Some of you know that still haunts me. If a television is on in a room it will take all of my will power to pay the tiniest attention. So if you want me to pay attention to you, turn off the TV. I just can't do it very well even if I hate what is on.) The single program that I can remember loving was the Bionic Woman. I wanted to be her. I grew my hair long so I could be like Jamie Sommers. I wanted my hair to flow out straight behind me when I ran. She could hear everything, she could do anything. Never mind that I hated to run (still do), I had dark hair, and have absolutely nothing bionic about me. I still think it would be nice to be able to hear that well and have that much strength and stamina. I loved too that she'd experienced something tragic and it was turned around to do good. That's something worth keeping. So if I can't have bionic powers and have given up the on the flowing hair at least I can remember that good things can come from tragedy.

Here are my sister and I using those imagined bionic powers on our brother (we didn't even drop him!).

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Mowgli's Surprise project

I read recently *somewhere* about a project using empty tin cans to create a tea light. I had a tin can recently emptied of something exciting like beans or tomatoes that I filled with water and put in the freezer. I fully intended to give the idea a try in the late evening hours when I might have some time on my own. Instead I forgot about it until yesterday when I was putting something else in the freezer. It happened to be Bahgera's naptime and I was looking for something fun Mowgli and I could do together. Ta da! So I decided instead of drawing a design on a piece of paper and punching it out with the nail, we'd just fly by the seat of our pants (or is it fingers?)

So we began (I mean what could be more fun than a hammer to NAIL into something?!)

We decided we'd make Mowgli with hair. The result:

It wasn't long before this tea light making thing became more work that it was worth. We took up a new line of work. Chipping our Jungle Book friends out of the ice in the can. This was a lot of fun and had the side benefit of little bits of ice that "taste like snow!". It was very exciting when we released each one from the ice. "Look it's Baghera! Come on out."

It's funny how things change with kids and still come out fun.

Friday, June 26, 2009

One of the delights of this time of year is the birds that come to our yard. I don't put out bird feeders (I saw some serious--and a little scary--flocks of birds at an urban house and haven't been able to do it since then) but we have regular visitors. A couple of doves, a small flock of starlings, a couple of robins, and these three:

They come by every morning and sometimes peek (and crash--though without serious injury) into our windows. I've tried to capture them in pictures, but my camera just doesn't have enough "reach". I thought I'd share a couple of attempts anyway.

Here's one saying good morning
PS See what I mean about the wild roses? :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

For today, Flowers! I'm loving the flowers that are steppin' out!

Bleeding hearts
I guess this means beauty is sometimes sad

Lily of the Valley

Wild Roses


I love the wild roses. Whether you're close up or far away they always catch your eye.
Happy Day!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Summer Bliss

I played a little game today while Bahgera slept. I loaded a "freight" car with spiny weeds while Mowgli ran the "rails" as James, the splendid red engine, hauling my freight away. We took them to the "docks" and let the "crane" unload them when the car got full. Later in the day Bahgera joined in the fun as did her Dad. We'd wave hello and goodbye as "James" came and went collecting the weeds that the "workman" (Dad) dug out. I'm sunburnt. I see thistles when I close my eyes. I know where the ant nursery is. I know the location of the hideout of those nasty earwigs and some silvery bug that has to be just as bad. My backyard is cleared of thistles. My family is content. A lovely day ending with plans to continue our game tommorrow.

Hooray for dirty feet! They have a tale to tell. While other folks are bored or sad, we're dancing very well.
I mentioned yesterday that I'd been feeling grumpy about the rain. The truth of the matter is that I've just been grumpy.
So here's what I did. I made two columns on one side was the list of "Things I hate about my life right now" (Listed as "A" below) on the other side was a list of "Things I love about my life/Reasons I should be grateful for or the positive side of the things I hate" ("B" below) (I know, I know, the second list title is insane--but how else do you inclusively say it?!)

Here's a bit of that list (I can't share EVERYTHING you know :))

A. Continual stickiness and constant (it feels like) food cleanup
B. Delight in food. Bahgera ate a nectarine recently with ecstatic relish. I love that. I also love seeing Mowgli start to eat things. It's impossible to describe how amazing and exciting it is when a child that doesn't eat begins to make forays into that magical ground.

A. Kids that wake up through the night.
B. I have kids.

A. Long to do lists and no time to do them.
B. Knowledge that I have a physical capacity to do them even if I don't have the time.

A. Lab orders pinned to the bulletin board for months.
B. That we don't have to do labs once a month at the moment and things are wonderfully boring.

A. Messy house, muddy floors, things everywhere.
B. It shows that we have stuff, we have fun and an interest in a wide variety of things.

Maybe things just aren't that bad. :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Happy Summer Solstice! Yesterday.
Today is one of two second to the longest days of the year right?

So what are you going to do on your (can I say it again?!) one of two second to the longest days of the year? I don't know either. I think it will have something to do with cleaning, maybe laundry and if I'm lucky a nap. The weather may be nice tomorrow. Perhaps I won't shout "No more hail!" at the sky while shaking my fist. (My son informs me that that won't make it stop. It does, however, make me feel better) This has been a long month with lots of rain (usually my favorite type of weather). I am tired of the rain. Wait. That's not what I mean. Our garden is tired of the rain. I am tired of the hail that always comes with it. It's summer. It's time for the hail to stop don't you think?

I was feeling incredibly grumpy about it a couple of days ago and then I read a blog written by a woman who lives in Scotland. She quoted ee cummings and then shared some wonderful pictures of her toddler stomping in and pushing his stroller through puddles. Something about the world being mud-ilicious and puddle-wonderful. We had a lovely break (about 15 minutes) in the rain and I'd gotten out and walked on warm mud. It was mud-ilicious. Shortly afterwards it cooled down again and I invited the kids to join in. I think Mowgli thought I was off my rocker. (Not long my love, not long) No shoes, come walk in the mud. It took some time to convince him. Not so the tiny girl. I looked for her as we attempted to plant some seeds and found her splashing happily in a mud puddle. If only I'd grabbed my camera for that puddle-wonderful shot muddy faced gleeful girl. It wasn't long before we were back in the house kids in the warm tub. We'd had a mud-ilicious, puddle-wonderful time. Thanks ee cummings and Slugs on the Refrigerator (http://www.slugsontherefrigerator.com/) for your inspiration. It's possible to change your grump when you change your view. At least is was for me. Have a wonderful day.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day My Love!

playmate, cook, reader, Popsicle sharer, walking and jumping companion, teacher, and most important (to Mowgli) taker to the park person, diaper changer, bouncer, friend, late night problem solver, opulence provider.

So many facets, so much love.

We love you!
Happy Father's Day to my Dad.

I have a picture of you tickling my feet while I'm sitting on your shoulders. I'm pointing far away. "What's that?" is the caption on the picture. I wasn't very big. (I was going to scan it, but you know what happened I'm sure--computers!)

It makes me want to say

"Who's that?"

The guy that has imperfections and makes an effort to overcome them.
The guy that always listens and responds thoughtfully.
The guy that taught me to always try and see a different side of a situation, both in making decisions and dealing with other people.
The guy that had the courage to say things that were difficult to say at important crossroads of my life (even thought they weren't often well received in the moment).
The guy that dreams dreams.
The guy that knows how to dress well.
The guy that puts God first and family second.
The guy that knows more cheesey lines that anyone I've ever met.
The guy that I can run to when I have a computer question and even if we can't figure it out we can get confused together. :)

That's my Dad.

I love you Dad! Thanks for all you are to me.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

For our Dad

We love you!

Guitar, or is it a race track?

May I take your picture Mom?

Whaa? No I'm not trying to take Mowgli's train!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Some silliness because I'm doing this for me. Or is it you?

Just because it's fun to see him with food of any kind on his face. Its even around his mouth! Guess he likes sprinkles and dream whip too.

I know you can't tell but these are growing in a weed pile on the sidewalk. Talk about Resilient.

Ice cream is serious! Even one finger dip at a time.

Just a few frags and some cute pics all made with you in mind. :) Happy Day to you.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

So I read this blog http://basicjoy.blogspot.com/ . She had a post titled "Life Shopping". Go read it if you get a chance. I do lots of life shopping and then stop once in a while and remember that I have a pretty great one to live right here. Here's to sharing, reading and exploring blog world and then going and really living in the real one!
"We have to go home it's starting to rain. Hurry!" I said.
Huh? I said that?
Yes you.
Couldn't be.
Then who?
Could it be that I've become a fairweather girl?
Next time, we're bringing rain gear.

Play in the wood chips.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Do you ever have one of those days when everything you do seems fast, furious and downright not quite adequate. Or maybe just adequate? I had one of those days today. Or yesterday I suppose I should say. At the end of it as I'm trying to get a very wound up child to unwind and go to sleep my dearest comes and invites me to see a rainbow in the sky. As I step onto the porch and look up at the sky all the fret and trouble melts away. It is replaced by the pleasantly cool air, the light drip of the rain, a touch of remaining sunlight and a glorious double rainbow that a camera can never catch (but I still try). Truly Glorious.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Happy Day part 2
Tuna Salad
The face doesn't show it, but she loves it.
Did I miss any?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

We had a birthday here recently of the first kind. :) Here's a bit of that fun day. Here's part of what we love about this girl.

Happy Birthday!
Don't miss any!

Top of the cake after it had all the dream whip and sprinkles removed. (in tiny little pinches)

Finally tasting the cake itself.

This darling girl loves life and getting into it.
Big time getting into it.
She loves loading and unloading anything from bookshelves to kitchen drawers to a random bag that got too close. She loves food, her big brother, music and noise of any kind, and lets not forget movement. The girl moves all of the time. Today for example I left her swathed in towels on the middle of the bed while I ran the 5 feet to her room to get her some clothes. By the time I was back out her door she was at the top of the stairs have successfully maneuvered the descent of the bed and crawled to that point. (Trust me I was running the whole time!)
Happy Day Tiny Sweet!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Tell me what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
~ Mary Oliver
I think, at a child’s birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift would be curiosity.
~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Happy is he who still loves something he loved in the nursery: He has not been broken in two by time; he is not two men, but one, and he has saved not only his soul, but his life.
~ G. K. Chesterton

Friday, June 12, 2009

Some of you know that health is something I've become intimately aquainted with over the last several years. I've learned how very little I know and understand about it. Basic assumptions I have made have turned up false. In any case with all the flu in the news I thought I'd share this link to Junkfood Science. She takes the terror hype out of the news and gives us all a way to evaluate what we hear. So take a look:


Thursday, June 11, 2009

We can only be said to be alive
in those moments when our hearts
are conscious of our treasures.
--Thornton Wilder


I have many more, but these are todays.
Our spring is still in full swing and I'm relishing it.
It's my favorite time to be where I am.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

So I'm a little tardy today. We just have too much going on. A little trip to a clinic after a fun weekend hanging out with Granny and the cousins. I don't have time to upload pics, but I wanted to share part of a conversation between Mowgli and Tiger last night:

Dad, do we have creatures in our house?

(explanation ensues that includes the idea that all living things are creatures. They talk about all kinds of "creatures" including the people who live here. One of the creatures Dad mentions is apes)

No Dad! They're not in the creature family! They're primates!

So there you have it. My quote of the day. Right up there with his response to a question--Do you like it when we stop and get icecream? "I lick and lick and it gets on my pants." True, True.

Have a Happy Day!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A Place of My Own
When I was a child I always wished for a place of my own. The closest thing I had was the top bunk. Oh yes, that was a marvelous above the hubub fortress of my own. I dreamed and wrote often of my own home, my own room, my own space. So it should be no suprise that we wanted Mowgli to have a room of his own (oh wait he already does--dang!) so we (OK Tiger) cut the top off several of our "extra" tipi poles and made a tipi that we hope will be covered with vegetation later this summer.
A place of his own, he doesn't know how lucky he is.
(Actually he can't quite figure out what is so great about a place to get away from everyone--he can't get enough of other people. Hmm maybe it will be MY hideout!)

Monday, June 8, 2009

Some fun things to do:
Worm blowing
an activity that includes blowing the worm across the stool

Jumping/dancing/running on the trampoline
~Yee Haw!~

What fun things are you doing this summer?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

More help than I needed

My friend Christa told me once (after sending me a bunch of really fun photos of her son) that to save her sanity she'd pull out the camera when she found him in the midst of mess making. I used that little tip the other day when I was attempting to create a "wheel" herb garden and I had a little more help than I bargained for.

Additional hole digger


What do you mean I can't dig up the plant? Well, how about here?

The beginning end result
(Note the item that looks like the top of a pot--it's a worm house)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Here are my flip dolls finally completed to giggling reviews as we play Peek-a-boo. That's hard to capture with a camera so here are the girls. The one on the right is Bahgera's, the one on the left is Mowgli's (it's his daughter you see).


Shhh! Sleeping

I made them from a kit sold by Umbrella Prints here: http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5745690

Here's to happy peek-a-booing

Friday, June 5, 2009

My favorite spring flowers:

The tolerant

The studier

The explorer

I sure love them!

Thursday, June 4, 2009


You've probably noticed just how enamored I am of dandelions lately. I just can't get over them. I suppose part of it is that I have a neighbors without any--or many in their yards, while we seem to have millions. In fact our garden is in large measure a result of our efforts to remove them from the backyard. We tilled up the ground thinking we'd reseed since the dandelions had taken over and a friend of ours thought we'd tilled for a garden. Why not? We thought. So now we have this great garden space. I digress. Recently I spent some time pulling dandelions out of an area that is going to be a flower/herb garden. They were big and plentiful. I was intent on ridding this little space of them. This is the pile or at least part of it. Do you notice anything?

Take a closer look.The next day (I don't always have time to complete tasks in one day) when I went to clean them up I was astounded at their tenacity. None of the dandelions I pulled were even close to going to seed as far as I knew. So here I was intent on ending their existence and in the tiny space I gave them (by leaving them on the sidewalk) they insisted on doing what they could to fulfill their purpose. To send out their little seedlings into the universe. I'm in awe. Never give up--not even when all hope is gone. That's my lesson from the dandelions.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


Remember This?

From this post: http://muddyspring.blogspot.com/2009/03/birds.html ?

Well apparently the little bird was asking permission to build a nest on the front porch light. It decided it was better to ask forgiveness than permission (since no one was answering the door anyway! I mean it did try after all.). Besides it was going to be used for something other than eggs anyway. So it just went ahead. We watched it. Hoped to see eggs in it or at least a bird at some time. No luck. After a storm last week it looked as if the secret nesters had had a quarrel and destroyed the nest--bits of nest scattered at the front door. Maybe piled is a better way to say it. Sort of a going away present. I think this might mean that spring will be maturing into summer sometime in the near future. Or it just might mean nothing at all. I know. I know. That's a couple of minutes you'll never get back. Smile. You don't want to lose any more do you?

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I've decided that life is about moments (I know, I know--THAT big discovery was made a long time ago by someone else). Really, I think it is about those tiny moments. My Mom calls them whisper diamonds like hoar frost that melts as soon as the sun warms the earth enough or the droplet of water in the center of a lupine leaf that can be blown away by the wind (if it's clever enough) or evaporate as things dry out. I've always thought of them in terms of hours, not MOMENTS. I had one though just the other day. I'm going to tell you the story. Are you ready? (On the edge of your chair I'm sure--or ball if you're like me)

It all started with the first rhubarb harvest of the year. It had to be done that day--there was no more putting it off. That day was a busy day, dishes and laundry to do--not to mention we had a date of sorts to go for a walk with friends. I dutifully pulled it and then set to work cutting off the leaves (poisonous you know--which is a shame they are such nice big leaves) and the yucky part at the bottom. Pretty soon Bahgera crawled over (there's no containing her these days) and started handing me stalks of rhubarb. I'd do my cutting and hand them to Mowgli (who nearly always wants to help in some way) who put them into a bowl I had for that purpose. It was magical. It was incredible. I was doing something productive and BOTH my kids were helping. Really and truly helping. At the same time! Let me bask in that for a moment. I'm really just trying to think of more superlatives so that you really know how amazing it was. Like stars aligning, everything standing still. Marvelous. It lasted about 2 minutes--I might be exaggerating the time a bit. It was 2 minutes at the very top. That was a MOMENT, a twinkle light as Brene' Brown calls them. I love to revisit it. The longer moments after that included trying to get something productive done quickly while two very cute kids did everything in their power to make sure that it didn't happen at all. Sigh. Lets go back to that other moment. It was magic, twinkling, sparkling, whisper diamond magic.

Later that day, or maybe it was the next day (Do you really care when it was?) Mowgli and I washed it. This is the marvelous stack that Mowgli built out of the rhubarb that was magically processed at least for a moment.

One other fun moment was near the end of the rhubarb washing when Mowg (we like to call him for short) decided to use the cut and peeled off bits as sea otters. They loved jumping in the water and swishing. Can you see the swish? Look closely. Those playful otters sure had fun.

In the meantime I bagged the goods. Not bad for one day (or was it two?--Aww, it's all MOMENTS remember?!)

Now you know that I know what it means when "they" say that life is about "moments". And you? Do you know? Will you share one with me? Please.