Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Well, I've been tagged by my Stepmom in this little photo game. You are supposed to go to your sixth photo file and post your sixth photo from that file, telling all about it. First I went to Picasa, but my sixth folder in there was from Halloween, and each of my kids was looking sideways. Then I went to the bottom and counted up. Not much better. So I decided to go to my other picture folder, the one in Windows. I accidentally went to my fifth photo file, and didn't like number six, so I decided to go with number five, but when I uploaded it, it turned out to be this picture, which is actually the sixth folder and sixth picture. I give up. Here it is.

I have no specific memories of this picture, but I have many specific memories of this child. She is my last baby. I'm crazy about her. She was grumpy to me when she was little, which she still is, really. Little, not grumpy. But now she tells me things. Like she wants a doll, a big girl doll, that talks, with a button. And a bus. A school bus? No. A bus that drives.

I am going to remember this girl as permanently having her hair in her eyes, except for the first twenty minutes of the day, and maybe several three-minute periods throughout the day after I reclip her hair back.

She is very into dressing herself lately. Yesterday she had her underwear on backwards, her shirt on backwards, and her shoes on the wrong feet. But don't worry. The shoes don't last. Or the socks. Or the shirt, for that matter. She likes being naked.

She likes to tromp in the snow. It's irresistable. There before her lies the scooped sidewalks, but she veers over to the small mountain (yes, it is a mountain here) and clomps all over it. We are trying to wear only snow boots outside now.

We saw a brand new baby in church on Sunday. She wanted to go get a closer look, and we stood there, amidst the crowd of others oohing and aahing over this sweet days-old little girl, and she said, "Is that the baby Jesus?" She seemed a little disappointed, like it wasn't what she had expected.

Those are my random thoughts on Gertie tonight.

Now I tag you Megan, and Heather. I hope you're reading.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

It is so quiet around our house this morning. Everyone is sleeping but me. Gertie came into our room at 6 a.m. telling us that it was morning, "Grace said it was." I think she slept with Grace last night. Lately, she's been sneaking out of her bed into one of her siblings' beds after we put her down. I have even started reminding her when I leave that I want her to stay in her own bed, and she says she will, but then she must change her mind. I guess I don't mind horribly if they don't mind. But I don't like that it's sneaky, if it is.

Grace spend the last three days at a place called Eagle Bluff. It is an environmental learning center. Outside. In December. It is something that the whole pile of 7th graders get to do in this town. They are outside for stretches of 3 hours at a time. She said she stayed warm and learned a few things. She was so tired when she came home that I haven't heard much about it. I heard about a tiff and drama between her bunkmates, but that was it. Oh, and that they were trying not to waste food, and it was sort of a contest. The kids got into it. They were trading food and eating other's leftovers so they wouldn't waste more than they had. Grace said her group did very will, with only 7 1/2 pounds of wasted food for the three days. I don't know how many were in the group, and I know that the syrup on the pancakes killed them in the end. I know if I added up the weight of the wasted syrup around my house I could feed many hungry. They might get sick eating all that syrup, though.

My kids eat almost nothing I prepare at our house, and they are way too picky about what John prepares. I think we should try this experiment at home. Maybe they'd get into the challenge and EAT. What we fix. Gertie ate some sugary cereal yesterday. Gobbled it up. Asked for more. As soon as I dumped more into her bowl she declared, "I don't like this." And she pushed it away. What is that? I hate that. And she can't seem to leave anything she doesn't care to eat on her plate. I remember the others being that way a bit too. But what is with that? Can't it just sit in the corner until you're done?

In Bible study we are reading the story of God asking Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. I have always had a hard time understanding this story. It bugs me. I am open to a new lesson from God here. There really are some great stories in Genesis. I've loved rereading them.

Gertie just woke up...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Study in Self-Portraits

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Christmas in the City

Well, that wasn't very nice, was it. I wanted you all to come back, and my intentions were pure, but I have just been spending every waking free moment working on a big trial transcript that I want to get out before Christmas. Anyway, I'm done with the biggest task, now I just have to proofread it, and enter my corrections. I'm feeling pretty good about that.

And since Christmas is fast approaching, I need to finish with Thanksgiving. I just found out this year about a sort of hometown kickoff to the Christmas season around here. The night after Thanksgiving our small downtown is abuzz with activity. They have a parade (sort of) down Main Street to where they light up all the Christmas lights in town for the first time. The local businesses participate with special treats or small giveaways. So we drug Heather and her family downtown, in the freezing cold, to eat some cookies and get the kids pictures taken with Santa and let the kids ride a train. I would say, overall, it was a good time. John thinks we froze out those southern cousins (Sorry, southern cousins!)

And this post isn't all that I imagined it to be, but I need to do some catching up around here.
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Monday, December 1, 2008

Portland in a Box after Turkey

We sat down for a game of Portland in a Box, which was a Christmas gift from Niece Heather many, many years ago. Savannah was excited to play an Oregon game, and it was fun to play with some folks who had actually been to every square on the board.

It was a bit slow moving with so many players, but we all had fun. Even Heather. Even in this picture.

Savannah had quite a flair for rolling dice. She rolled doubles a lot and really held her own in this mathematically challenging game.

This is one of Grace's artsy pictures. I just like it.

And this adorable little child is just too irresistible for the camera. What can I say? Just plain precious.

I think there's kind of a Brady Bunch thing going on here. Completely unintentional, but how clever. If it had been intentional.

And this little guy really liked his turkey pin. And I really like this little guy. Those cousins are fun to be around.

Is it time for turkey yet? Again?

We finally abandoned the game looking just like this. Grace had one property. I had two. Heather wouldn't trade. Apparently it's a long-held conviction. Savannah loves her Daddy and gave him whatever he wanted...and Ethan started giving away everything he owned as soon as the Playstation started calling his name. And it calls his name, believe me.

This has taken me a very long time to download all these pictures and I'm not even close to done. So this is going to come in parts. That will be good for my blogging habit, and it's sure to make you check back for more. (smiley face here)

A Real Trendsetter

If you've seen my youngest lately you probably know that she's a bit neglected--in the hair department, I mean. And I'm coming to the point where I'm ready to cut her hair. Well, have it cut, I mean. We're talking about it.

Anyway, tonight I thought it was so telling when she sat down with her bag of barrettes and stuck a countless number in her own hair. I really do try to keep the hair out of her eyes, and it never fails that they are always falling out or the hair is falling out of them. I haven't actually tried this method, though. Maybe I should do that.

And please don't judge on the snotty nose and peanut butter face. That is an entirely different type of neglect (which I am only sometimes guilty of). I should have prepared her for the picture, but you know, sometimes you need to take the moment at exactly the moment it presents itself, or you'll never capture the moment.

I am working on (in my mind) a Thanksgiving post, but it will have to be bigger. Grace took 90 pictures and 53 of them were good ones! I need to try to choose and post. Big post to come.