- First thought is "Did I already get something on the lens of my camera, or is that coffee cup crusty?" It is true that I despise dishwashers, my eyesight is not so keen when I am in a hurry, and I don't like washing the dishes any more than I like rinsing them all off so I can put them in the dishwasher. If I were normal, I imagine I would cringe and not say a thing. If. I'm not, and I've gotten to the point where I recognize many of my shortcomings and don't necessarily see them getting better in this lifetime.
- This warrior goddess was inspired by tales of Amazon warriors and Athena. She is truly a warrior, what with her shield at her hip, the spike of her headress, and the powerful tilt to her body. Why do warriors inspire us when all we are looking for is ourselves? Reading about a great warrior, or even seeing a documentary type show on television, will do strange things to our brains, don't you think? Something about the bravado and swagger appeals to us, makes us want to do battle with life and come out the winner. I find it ironic that larger than life legends prop me up in battles with enemies which are usually of my own making and have little to do with actual war scenarios. Why call on Athena to help me gain the courage to defeat a fear that I have created for myself? Warped, I tell you, a bit warped. Still, we all have our fears of failure, fears of achieving success, fears of not living up to other people's expectations. Believing in heroes is one coping mechanism we can all use. We may not be able to prevent ourselves from creating fears, but we can become inspired to change our thoughts so that they become less frightening. Hurrah for heroes!
- The kiln is warming right now. Would you like to know the temperature on the display before it started heating? 44. That's it. Forty-four degrees Fahrenheit inside the little room that connects our kitchen to the garage. We all call it the "breezeway" even though it is fully enclosed. On days this cold, I think it deserves its name. Last night, the kids and I decided to head into town before Daddy got home from work. We couldn't stand being cooped up any longer, so we piled on layers and headed out in the 18 degree night. Then, while the van was warming, we were talking about how "cold" is a relative term. We talked about how cold it is north of here, and I reminded them that Marcy's daughter is in Anarctica right now. That's south, and that's cold even when the rest of the southern hemisphere is having summer.
- The search for the perfect house closer to St. Louis continues. Speaking of warriors, the tiny town south of where we looked this weekend had me thinking in terms of getting a shotgun and a mean, mean dawg. I swear, I heard banjo music coming from one of those front porches. Aw, not really, but it did look like a rough place in some spots. The farm country where the house was located was almost like home for me, though. We're getting closer to finding our compromise. The city boy (okay, town raised, but he really likes when work takes him to big cities like London or New York) has almost total disregard for my love of trees and a bit of curve to the land, so I have to remind him that I am not going to be ecstatic about a house on five acres of flat as a board land, especially if there are no trees or creeks or something! He has finally taken due note of this preference, and we now know our compromise is going to have to include some flatland for a great big shed/car garage *plus* some gentle roll or some trees or a pond or something. Like how descriptive I am? "Or something." It's true, though, that any bit of those things makes a piece of land have the potential to feel like home for me. I don't carry a checklist in my hand-- I gauge my "feel" for a place.
- Kate was awake in the middle of the night and couldn't get back to sleep, so we had one of our rambling conversations. From the beginning of the school year, she has sort of dug herself into a hole as far as reading goes. She is very smart, but in a different way from her brother. Reading comes naturally for him, but Kate is going to have to work at it. She wants to do it all on her own, though. She's confident, too. The only problem is that this self-confidence leads her to think she always knows the answers. She'll guess a word and assume she's got it right, instead of asking for verification. Last night, she told me what she said to herself last week. "I said to myself, I'm going to work hard and get five out of five on my reading tests so I can go to the A.R. (Accelerated Reading) party this month. I did it!" Damn, I hope I live to see her in her forties or even fifties, because she's already a pretty old soul when it comes to knowing herself.
Time to hit the torch! One of these mornings, I gotta put some deep thought into a Christmas post for you. My children asked me (me, the religious eclectic who is unfond of organized religion but does enjoy spiritual exploration), "Mom, who is your favorite? Santa Claus? or Jesus?" Yeah. That's a loaded question, and how do I answer that one without seeming to both biased and hypocritical at the same time? For the record, I said "both because I can't choose." I wanted to say "Jesus because if you are a Christian there is much to love about the holiday celebrating his birth." But I'm not (at least, I'm not only a Christian if I am any religious type at all), so does that make me a hypocrite for singing Christmas songs and celebrating this holiday which is so much a part of our culture? See, that's going to be one looooooooong essay, isn't it? Peace and love and happy day to each of you, Ang