Monday, March 25, 2013


Sometimes, it doesn't occur to me to let other people do things.

Not like I won't let Martin do the dishes or I won't let my mother-in-law take the kids for an afternoon. I LOVE it when those things happen. I mean other things, like letting Dylan do the vacuuming after tidying up the front room. I taught him how to vacuum a few months ago, but haven't asked him to do it for me since then. I asked him to last week, and he was so excited to help out!

But worse was last Thursday when Edith asked Amy if she wanted to say the prayer. I told her I would say it, and she asked why Amy couldn't. I explained that Amy, who goes to the Church of England, doesn't say prayers the same way we do. She looked at me and said, "Of course I do. I've always wondered why you wouldn't let me say prayers at your house."


Guess what? She said the bed time prayer that night. And from now on, any time one of the kids asks her if she wants to say the prayer, I'll sure let her.

It really made me wonder how often we fail to let people do the things that they would love to do. How often do we exclude people by doing what we think is the "nice" thing to do?

Amy has been having dinner in our home once a week for nearly three years now. I've missed out on three years worth of chances to make her feel loved and welcome in our home by praying with us and for us. Talk about regrets! But I'll do better from this day forward. And I'll be thankful that I've learned this lesson. After all, better late than never. Right?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The power of a good book

Edith is learning phonics, and it's amazing! I sat at KFC with her this afternoon (don't judge me, ok? Mama didn't want to do any cooking!) and made words with her fries. She was reading them, and it blew me away.

I felt the same way when Dylan learned to read. It will never cease to amaze me how quickly kids learn to read. I mean, think about what an abstract concept it is. There are marks on a page that arbitrarily represent sounds. We string them together to create words, though there aren't any hard and fast rules of pronunciation--at least, not with English. So you go from seeing marks on a page to reading War and Peace. Scribbles, to complex ideas. WOW!

This girl is going to be really smart. At first, I worried that she wouldn't be as smart as her big brother. Dylan is so intelligent it's scary. I still don't know if she'll be on par with him, because it's early yet. But she's no dummy. I love that my kids are bright and into books.

Dylan's reading is coming on brilliantly, as well. He's no longer reading "baby books," but has graduated to the big kid ones. His current book had 159 pages, and he loves it.

I'm having visions of long, sunny afternoons in the garden, all of us reading our own books.

Mmmmm...sounds like my idea of heaven!

Saturday, March 09, 2013

Whirlwind day...

Seriously, where has the day gone? It was Edith's ballet lesson this morning, and hot chocolate and donuts for breakfast afterwards. Then it was cleaning up, making lunch (and dinner for later), eating, and dashing out to Scunthorpe. It was exchanging some stuff at Primark for the right size, going to the library, supervising the kids in making mother's day cards for me at the 20/21 gallery (mothering Sunday tomorrow). Then it was a quick snack, and off to the Speech and Drama festival trophy showcase. Home then, quick dinner, bath, and bedtime. Then a little tidy up, a Skype call with my mom (hi Mom), and lesson preparation. Now it's blogging, soon to be followed up by more tidying, reading, and bed. Hmmm, maybe I'll squeeze a little yoga in there as well.


Got some thoughts brewing on forgiveness. They really belong on both blogs. But for now, I'd just like to leave this with all of you:

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

My Dylan

Today he participated in the Scunthorpe Speech and Drama Festival. He memorized a poem by Grace Nichols called "Don't Cry, Caterpiller," and recited it in front of a room full of people and a judge. He did it beautifully, and took first place out of 20 other children. He's going to be performing it at a concert on Saturday. Oh, I was so terribly proud of him!

In other Dylan news, he contributed the following items to a recent load of laundry:

A small plastic hedgehog, which he has named Charlotte.

Several notes from school.

A die cast model of a police cruiser.

Some Angry Birds trading cards.

The slug made it into that load without any help from Dylan whatsoever.

Sometimes being a housewife is the funniest job in the whole world. Gross, but funny!

Friday, March 01, 2013

Can of Worms...

Nearly finished with the stairs project--at least what I can do on it. Two of the 16 steps need to be replaced, and that is definitely a Martin job. But I applied the second coat of paint this evening, and they look mighty fine. It has yet to be decided if they will stay pure white. Martin is plumping for funky coloured risers. The jury's still out with me.

I've finally got my DIY momentum back, after a three month hiatus. I've just been feeling that urge to beautify my home. If I was pregnant, I'd think I was nesting. Maybe it's just that spring is happening all around me, and it makes me want to deep clean. Anyway, I'm thrilled that the desire is back. While it's here, I'm making a big push to get stuff done.

My can of worms is this:

I mixed up a batch of filler to repare some of the gaps between the walls and the base boards on the stairs this evening. I mixed up a bit too much, so I went on a little hunt to find any cracks throughout the house that needed filling. I don't think I'll ever be able to stop. My house is more cracks in the walls than it is walls. ARGH!

Now sure, I could just leave them. They've never really bothered me before. But now I've seen how much better it looks when they are filled, and there's no turning back. And, of course, filling the cracks means sanding and then painting as well. What have I done???

Tonight I was just going to work for about an hour. Instead, I worked for two and a half. It's good to get stuff done, but still...

In other news, we had parents' evenings for both kids this week. As usual, we were told that our children are very bright and well adjusted. Dylan is the top of his class in several subjects (but appears to be resting on his laurels at the monent) and Edith is part of a very small, select group of early readers. No, she's not reading yet. But she is learning phonics and beginning to spell very simple three letter words.

Martin is back at work after his (totally amazing) week off, and we all miss him. Especially me, because I love that man to distraction. His schedule is going to be strange for a few weeks because of English Mother's Day, and he's going to be pretty busy for that. They're getting closer to finishing off the upstairs function room at Stables, so that's something to look forward to. They had cocktail night last night, with live music. Fun, huh?

Bottom line is, we are all super busy, happy, and healthy (I don't think I'll ever stop using that silly Oxford comma). So don't worry about us, mom.

Now I need to go try and get some sleep while feeling totally high on paint fumes. Wish me luck.