Thursday, September 19, 2013

our first pumpkin

A few years ago I received a bit of advice in the form of a few words of comfort.  I was at my husband’s work picnic and talking to his coworker about big families.  He had six children and his oldest was about to leave for her second year of college.  At the time I had all my kids at home and our routine was very controlled.  Everyone had their activities but by 9:00 all the kids were tucked into their beds.  I asked him how hard was it to have a child leave for school…is it worrisome?  I could not imagine being in those shoes.  He said it took getting used to but it reaches a point when it is okay.  It just becomes okay.  He was right.  Now with two kids away from home it feels okay.  I was weary I would ever reach this point.  It helps that they are happy and they have surrounded themselves with good friends.  I’m happy they are happy!

What about when they come home for a visit?  Oye!  It’s so exciting!

Hadley is coming home this weekend and I can’t wait to just hug that child.  I always want her to feel like this is her home, even though we moved here while she was away at school and no longer has her own bedroom.  But she needs a place!  A place that can be hers while she is here.  I never want her to feel like a guest.


I surrounded her little corner bed with things that remind me of her and hopefully remind her of happy days of childhood.


Her childhood desk, it has an old wood smell inside it that instantly reminds me of her sitting at it working on her papers and crafts.  While she is too big for it now it is a good place to lay a suitcase.


This is a pillow she and I worked on one hot Texas afternoon. 


When she was 7 she memorized all the bird flashcards.  I wonder if this has come in handy in her life?  Does she walk through her neighborhood and identify birds?  I shall ask her this when she is here.  Maybe I will quiz her and see how well she remembers them.


There are treasures from her dad’s travels.  Each trinket has a story, my children often remember these stories better than I do.  All that traveling we did has made the world small in Hadley’s eyes.  Much smaller than I thought it was when I was her age.  The enormity of the world scared me, she isn’t bothered by such things.  She likes to see and do, where as I liked to look and think about doing.

What about that feeling when you are at the airport and waiting for your loved one to walk through the doorway?  It’s unnerving! Hurry up and come home to mama!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

putting up


When the youngest has his big nap of the day I get ants in my pants about what exactly I will choose off my never ending list. If I pick one thing I will be in the middle of it and wishing I picked something else.  Lately the only constant is canning.  And I enjoy doing it. I love knowing there are jars of things in the basement. Sometimes I stand there and just stare at them.  In the winter I will remember picking things with my family when it was warm out and we scoffed at cold winter days.  But those days will be here, this I am certain.


Don’t mind my messy handwriting on those jars.  It’s only if what is inside tastes good that counts.


I was happy we had an abundance of concord grapes this year as last year we didn’t and I was sad about it.  This year I didn’t sigh out one complaint about skinning each of those grapes (well I kind of did just now).


This is my newest attempt…fruit cocktail.  I realize many people don’t like it but it is a staple here in our pantry. I used a few maraschino cherries which is horrible but when you are a child the cherry in fruit cocktail is the best part.  And it defeated the purpose to buy fresh cherries at $5 a pound that looked terrible  anyway.



As a family we mostly eat these plums and pears.  They are good when you are craving something sweet but don’t want to commit to a hefty dessert.

I wish I could photograph myself in a gourmet kitchen canning away in heels and a flowery dress with perfectly coordinated gingham apron.  This is my kitchen right now…



It’s awful.

I will be glad when it is all done, this has been an ongoing project that life interrupted. I will be so happy when it is complete!