Sunday, March 30, 2008
Saturday, March 29, 2008
Earth laughs in flowers.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
To be overcome by the fragrance of flowers is a delectable form of defeat.
'Tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes!
Look at us, said the violets blooming at her feet, all last winter we slept in the seeming death but at the right time God awakened us, and here we are to comfort you.
~Edward Payson Rod
Flowers seem intended for the solace of ordinary humanity.
If you've never been thrilled to the very edges of your soul by a flower in spring bloom, maybe your soul has never been in bloom.
The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size.
~Gertrude S. Wister
Friday, March 28, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Last night the Munchkins and I tested for our new belts in martial arts. Master Munchkin has a natural infinity, I guess, for kicking and punching for he received his yellow belt and got bumped up to the next age level. He is quite proud, since most 7 year olds stay back another year.
Miss Munchkin and I received our orange belts. This represents that we have learned a certain set of skills and have attended about 6 months worth of classes. We are still the "new kids on the block" since it takes about 3 years to become a black belt at our martial arts school.
Last night, we were tested mostly on boxing technique, including jab-cross-kick combinations with a few parries, covers, and hooks thrown in. We also were graded on our kicks - front, side and roundhouse.
Also included in our yellow belt training (but weren't on the test) were several self-defense techniques, such as how to get out of various choke holds and hair grabs. This is one of our favorite parts of class - where else can you officially choke your daughter with two hands or pull your mom's hair? ;)
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Monday, March 24, 2008
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Saturday, March 22, 2008
My Grandmother is turning 88 this week and is also celebrating her Sixty-Ninth wedding anniversary. Since they live in another state, we had to celebrate from afar. My mom and dad came over and we posed for a 3 generation Happy Birthday Photo.
Friday, March 21, 2008
This article caught my eye, The Holiday Hallmark Can't Handle.
Good Friday is the one Christian "holiday" that the wider culture, even in America, has not taken up. It is the one holy day whose Christian significance cannot be bleached out to leave a commercially viable residue. Christmas can be for children and families, for shopping, for feasting. Easter can be bunnies and baby chicks, the newness of spring and a whole lot of chocolate. Even a couple of days marked out to honor saints in some Christian traditions-Valentine, Patrick-have been pretty much entirely taken over by a culture of romance and hedonism, sex and shopping.Also, this article is worth a read, Good Friday Surprises.
Not this day. There is nothing marketable about Good Friday. Suffering, sacrifice, injustice, betrayal-what's to celebrate? What's to shop for? Who could pig out on a day like that? (the rest)
Thursday, March 20, 2008
My Favorite Sister had an amazing adventure in the Peruvian jungle and traveling down the Amazon River. From her recent email:
I held a 3 toed sloth and had an anaconda around my neck! I also pet a very tame and friendly tapir and watched river dolphins jump in the Amazon. I had no idea there were dolphins in rivers....but there are! We had a very knowledgeable guide who knew everything about the jungle plants and animals. We took jungle walks and boat trips down the river. Once we ventured out at night to go looking for alligators. We didn't see any, but we did get to float in the river in the middle of the rainforest and listen to all of the amazing night sounds.
This weekend she is headed to a famous, ancient city - can you guess what it is?
Hint: It is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Student: How did you change the camera exposure on the fly like that?
Me: I turned the little dial.
Student: Which dial?
Me: Oh, you know - the one on top, next to the Thing. Next question!
(from Class, Please Welcome MrsMama)
It's a good thing that love transcends language barriers. Or, for an analogy that my husband would appreciate:
Love is like pi - natural, irrational, and very important. --Lisa Hoffman
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Both the Munchkins can do proper push-ups. They can both do more than I. Even the Little One. Miss Munchkin can crank out 30 in 1 minute. She's my hero.
The New York Times had this to say about the push-up. Read the article to see why it's an important skill. Then drop and give me 20.
A DOG'S DIARY
7 am - Oh boy! A walk! My favorite!
8 am - Oh boy! Dog food! My favorite!
9 am - Oh boy! The kids! My favorite!
Noon - Oh boy! The yard! My favorite!
2 pm - Oh boy! A car ride! My favorite!
3 pm - Oh boy! The kids! My favorite!
4 pm - Oh boy! Playing ball! My favorite!
6 pm - Oh boy! Welcome home Mom! My favorite!
7 pm - Oh boy! Welcome home Dad! My favorite!
8 pm - Oh boy! Dog food! My favorite!
9 pm - Oh boy! Tummy rubs on the couch! My favorite!
11 pm - Oh boy! Sleeping in my people's bed! My favorite!
A CAT'S DIARY
Day 783 of my captivity
My captors continued to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine lavishly on fresh meat, while I am forced to eat dry cereal. The only thing that keeps me going is the hope of escape, and the mild satisfaction I get from clawing the furniture. Tomorrow I may eat another house plant.
Today my attempt to kill my captors by weaving around their feet while they were walking almost succeeded. Maybe I should try this at the top of the stairs.
In an attempt to disgust and repulse these vile oppressors, I once again induced myself to throw up on their favorite chair. I must try this on their bed.
Decapitated a mouse and brought them the headless body in an attempt to make them aware of what I am capable of, and to try to strike fear into their hearts. They only cooed and condescended about what a good little kitty cat I was. This is not working according to plan.
There was some sort of gathering of their accomplices. I was placed in solitary confinement throughout the event. However, I could hear the noise and smell the food. More important, I overheard that my confinement was due to my powers of inducing something called "allergies." Must learn what this is and how to use it to my advantage.
I am convinced the other captives are flunkies and maybe snitches. The dog is routinely released and seems more than happy to return. He is obviously a half-wit.
The bird, on the other hand, has got to be an informant. He speaks with them regularly, and I am certain he reports my every move. Due to his current placement in the metal room, his safety is assured. For now...
Friday, March 14, 2008
Master Munchkin recently attended a Suzuki workshop. (You can see him on the left side of the stage, in the green and blue stripped shirt.) The teacher of this session is Eric Hauck, a cool cellist who was classically trained and plays in rock bands.
These students are being trained in the Suzuki method, where music is taught at a young age as a language and an aural art. You may be familiar with the "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" theme that students learn quite early.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Overheard in Miss Munchkin's classroom:
Teacher: What's the purpose of an education?
Boy 1: to get smart
Boy 2: be able to get a good job
Boy 3: get though life
Teacher: Actually, the purpose of having an education is...
Boy 1: to get educated
Teacher: ...to learn how much you do not know.
Boy 2: So we need an education to learn that we're stupid?
Teacher: The purpose of an education is not to get a job. If you think that, you are chasing the wind.
Boy 2: But, if you were really fast...
Boy 1: It's actually really easy to catch the wind.
Boy 2: Yeah, you just stand in front of it and it catches you!
Teacher: Guys, you are trying to avoid this conversation. You are using everything you've got to change the subject and avoid talking about this. What's the matter with you?
Boy 1: A.D.D.
Teacher: I think it goes further than A.D.D.
Boy 1: A.D.H.D.
Teacher: This is vanity!
Miss Munchkin: ya think?
Monday, March 10, 2008
I love the sense of scale here. I think the viewer gets a feel of the majesty of the sky.
It was reassuring to know that even National Geographic photographers don't know what all the buttons on their cameras do. And they take lots of pictures and delete most of them. Just like me. :)
Saturday, March 08, 2008
National Geographic is hosting a photography seminar in our area and I am going! Right now. Literally. I'm so excited!
Jim Richardson is one of the presenters. Here are some of his incredible photos.
For a mini-lesson of your own, check out NG photographer Annie Griffiths Belt's 10 tips for taking great pictures.
Friday, March 07, 2008
Just a subtle suggestion: Mostly Martha would make a great weekend movie.
Thursday, March 06, 2008
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
(Overheard in Miss Munchkin's classroom)
Teacher: Put the giant pencil down.
Student1: I don't have another pencil!
Teacher: Borrow one.
Student2: What do you have against giant pencils?
Teacher: Nothing, other than the distraction that it causes.
Student2: Are you prejudiced against giant pencils?
Teacher: (calmly) Just their distractions.
Student2: You're prejudiced against giant pencil distractions?
Monday, March 03, 2008
Teacher: Let's see...who can I pick on...." (chorus of "me"s follow) "Tannyr, can I pick on you?"
Teacher: "Now watch as I push on Tannyr's head with my hand. Does that hurt?"
Teacher: "Now, what would happen if I pushed on his head with this little thumb tack?"
Teacher: "Would that hurt more?"
Tannyr: nods quickly
Teacher: "What's the difference?"
Preston: "Yeah, there is no difference, so it shouldn't hurt."
Teacher: "What's the difference?"
Tannyr: "It hurts more...."
Teacher: "But I'm using the same force! So it shouldn't hurt more."
Preston: "Yeah, prove it!"
Sunday, March 02, 2008
She swept, mopped, vacuumed, picked up toys, cleared off counters, cleaned the bathrooms, made beds, dusted and did laundry. Apparently, she took some photos:
The place looked great.
I hadn't asked her to do any of it. What a surprise and what a blessing!
Saturday, March 01, 2008
- Martin Luther King, Jr.