Saturday, November 27, 2004

Homework, Housework, Shopping

I didn't sleep so well last night, and I woke up too early. That gave me time to start the housework before Rachel woke up and wanted me to help her with the homework. So I made turkey soup, cleaned up the kitchen, cleaned my bathroom. Then my neighbor phoned and asked me to go walking with her. Rachel got up and had soup for breakfast (I need to buy some milk!) then we started working on an assignment for her Early Childhood Curriculum class. She had to make up six age-appropriate self-directed educational activities around an insect theme, and they had to be such that they could all be attached to a folding board that could be set up in a classroom.

She came up with six pretty good ideas for the activities, but she needed some help implementing them. So I helped cut and glue and apply contact paper. Due to her birth defect, she is very slow with those kinds of skills, which is unfortunate for a kindergarten teacher. She has thought about this handicap though, and has a brilliant plan for coping: "I'll just get the parents to help me!" And knowing her, she will do just that. Rachel is never lacking in optimism, she's always willing to try, and always willing to ask for help.

So by one o'clock that project was finished. We had some lunch and cleaned up the mess we had made and at 3pm went shoe shopping. At the third store we finally found her a pair of short black boots to replace her old ones with holes in them. I hate shopping and I was getting grouchy, but then I realized that there was really nothing to be grouchy about. Poor Rachel, she loves to shop, but not me.

And then we came home, had some more soup, cleaned up the kitchen, cleaned the other bathroom, vacuumed the floors.

The only other exciting thing that happened today was lending our van to some resourceful MKs who went street shopping and found a couch. No, that is not the same thing as dumpster diving.

Thursday, November 25, 2004

50 Things I'm Thankful For

As the day goes by, I'm going to make a list of 50 things I'm thankful for. I just woke up, so I'll get started:
  1. that I got to sleep in this morning
  2. that I woke up beside my favorite person
  3. that I had some nice emails in my inbox this morning
  4. that my friend is putting a turkey in the oven about now and I get to eat some of it later
  5. that my other friend's son stayed up late to bake pumpkin and apple pies, and since I lent him some pie pans, I bet I'll get them back full instead of empty
  6. I just ate my first meal of the day--I'm thankful I can have green salad for breakfast.
  7. that a friend just called me to say Happy Thanksgiving and to ask: should I give the turkey giblets to the cat raw or should I cook them first?
  8. that my daughter woke up in a good mood
  9. that my husband is practicing Christmas music on the piano
  10. that he is also practicing Beethoven
  11. for my first cup of tea of the day
  12. for a washing machine. And bleach.
  13. that I can read pretty well (according the the paper I'm editing, 44 million Americans cannot).
  14. that there are books on tape for people who either cannot see well enough to read or who have reading disabilities.
  15. OK, it is almost time to leave for our friends' house, but I'm thankful the neighbor boy showed up with pumpkin pie. Don't tell--I snuck a little piece already--mmmmm!
  16. that the sun has come out so we have cool but sunny weather.
  17. I'm thankful for global telecommunications. We just called Andrew in Ethiopia. It is cool to get the globe out during the conversation and observe how far away he is, but it sounds like he is just next door.
  18. I'm thankful for Andrew's job in Ethiopia.
  19. I'm thankful that Andrew likes his job.
  20. I'm thankful that he seems to be doing a good job--his main job is to schmooze (in the nicest sense of the word). He is a networker, a global thinker, and he knows how to apologize when appropriate.
  21. I'm thankful that Rachel knows how to make green bean casserole.
  22. I'm thankful that my attempt to make a child's puzzle using a color printer and a photocopier worked on the first try.
  23. OK, we're back from Thanksgiving dinner. I'm thankful for good food.
  24. I'm thankful I didn't have to cook it all.
  25. I'm thankful for good friends. We live far away from family, but friends are a good substitute.
  26. I'm thankful for some new online friends I've made this past year too, even if I've never met them.
  27. I'm thankful for A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving.
  28. I'm thankful for a digital camera to borrow.
  29. some new photos for my website.
  30. the chance to talk to David today. He declined all invitations to Tgiving dinner and ate Campbell's vegetable soup instead. :-/
  31. a good job
  32. a meaningful job
  33. a job with lots of flexibility
  34. a good boss
  35. great coworkers
  36. another cup of tea
  37. a safe neighborhood to live in
  38. a house that is paid for
  39. friends to walk with
  40. friends to talk with
  41. I'm down to the last 10, three more hours of Thanksgiving left. I'm thankful for yet another cup of tea. This one prepared and served by my best friend.
  42. I'm thankful for God's love.
  43. for God's love shown to me by family
  44. for God's love shown to me by friends
  45. for God's love declared to me in the Bible which I can read in my mother tongue
  46. for a great group of financial supporters who have kept food on our table for over 25 years
  47. for a great group of prayer supporters who have kept us going for over 25 years
  48. for an old Bible study group where I am helped
  49. for a new Bible study group where I can help
  50. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

More pre-Thanksgiving

I worked today, made BLTs for lunch, then spent an hour talking over one of Rachel's school projects with her. Then we went to the library and found 12 children's books illustrated (not written) by Janet Stevens. Then to the bank and the school teacher store. Rachel is really getting into the teaching thing--she wanted to buy something from every aisle. But since she had to use her own money she restricted her purchases to just a few insect-themed items. The checkout lady gave her the teacher discount without asking. Rachel felt obliged to confess that she wasn't actually a teacher yet, but she hoped to be in one more semester. The lady smiled and said, "Too late."

We have an easy day tomorrow--all I have to provide for Thanksgiving dinner is olives, pickles, and pepperoncinis. Rachel is going to make the one and possibly only thing she knows how to make, green bean casserole. I'm thankful for long-time friends who make us feel like family.

And my husband is thankful too--he won his first Ebay bid.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004


I'm thankful for lots of things. I'm thankful at least one of my kids gets to be home with us for the Thanksgiving holiday. I am awaiting her imminent arrival. She found a ride home with a girl who lives nearby. We were expecting them at about 6pm. At 6:15 the phone rang--they were stuck in bad traffic in north Dallas. There had been a storm early this afternoon that closed part of the route they were coming on. Every 30 minutes the phone rang again. They were getting closer, but not here yet. Then it rang again, "We missed the exit and now we're at the corner of Wheatland and Cockerell Hill. Which way do we go?" "Go west on Wheatland." "Which was is west? Hey, quit laughing at me!" And this girl wonders why we haven't given her a car to drive to school...

Anyway, it is 8pm and she just got here. It is a joy to have her home for a few days. She had hoped to not have homework, but there will probably be some. She has worked very hard the past two weeks with projects and a big exam, and she deserves a break.

Lord, thank you for bringing her safely home.

Sunday, November 21, 2004


My husband is funny. Tonight he is bidding in his first Ebay auction, and he's so excited. He didn't have an Ebay name or password, so I gave him mine. Well, I've never used it either--I got my name when David was underage and begged me to let him bid on something. (I think he bought something really nice, like a pair of leopard print boxer shorts, or something like that...)

Anyway, he is trying really hard to get a certain song book. He first tried to buy it on, but it is out of print. So he looked on Ebay and found one copy. So he is bidding on it and he's acting like a kid at Christmas. (Wait, I told him if he gets it I'm wrapping it up and giving it to him for Christmas.)

No, I'm not going to tell you the name of the song book. I don't want you going and bidding the price up! But I will tell you he is practing piano songs for the upcoming holiday, trying to copy the style of George Winston and David Huntsinger.