Monday, November 26, 2012

Soup on a Monday

I think I would definitely call this my favorite week of the whole year, and it all began last Friday (I am, unfortunately, profoundly terrible at having my camera on hand for the really important moments which is why I have hardly any pictures from this week. Ack!)

Coby and Liz
It began with my little brother's engagement! Coby is a man of few words, and so I had to bring out the nagging annoying sister act to find out my suspicions were true, that the big date he was planning in Cleveland was more significant than just a night on the town (smile). Partway through the evening he sent a "She said Yes" text which sent the girls into a frenzy of glue and glitter that I am still scraping off the floor. Coby and Liz stayed the night and we stayed up late drinking champagne and celebrating with them. (This is the part where I forgot to take pictures! Ugh.)

Coby is the greatest guy and Liz is fabulous. It has been such fun watching this story unfold as Coby (in his quiet, subtle way) has had a huge thing for her for years- as she has traveled the world- and now to see them together and so happy is so great.

Growing up with three brothers I always wanted sisters- but I never knew how much fun sisters-in-law would be!

We did two days of school last week focusing only on the arts- reading, writing, Thanksgiving crafts and baking; a fun two days. Our plan was to drive to my parents' Wednesday afternoon but as Jim was working out of town and we needed to drive separately anyway, I decided Tuesday night to leave early and beat the traffic.

The girls were ecstatic when I told them around five in the evening that we needed to hurry and pack our things to leave that night, and then I took them through Chick-fil-a (which we never do), and let them eat in the car, (which we never do), and watch a movie as we drove (only on long trips), and they were sooo excited. For kids it really is the little things that are the most exciting, and our spontaneous night drive will probably be the Thanksgiving event they remember most this year.

It is always good to go "home" for a few days. I got to have lunch with my girlfriends who I do not get to see at all enough, and spend time with my Grandma and Aunt Sharman, and drink wine with my dad and coffee with my mom.

Salted Caramel Shortbread
My contribution to Thanksgiving was this Salted Caramel Shortbread. I didn't cook the caramel long enough so it was too soft, and next time I will double the shortbread per one batch of caramel- and there will be a next time! It was awesome.

On Saturday I forced- forced myself to sit still and watch football with Jim. I find it is so hard to do nothing. Next year my word of the year is going to be to CHILL. It was a good weekend for Ohio football!

I made it halfway through The Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrook. It is an excellent book, holds your attention, deeply researched, and did we miss some things in our American History education!? However I think I will leave the second half for next Thanksgiving. Janet had a good review of it here.


Jim and I are believers in the value of experiences over things. And one of the reasons we love living in Cleveland is all of the opportunities for experiences for our children, especially in the arts. This weekend we took the girls to their first full Orchestra experience, and it was fantastic! The Cleveland Orchestra offers a Pops Christmas concert and for this occasion children are encouraged to attend. I checked and double checked if that included squeaky two year olds, and it seemed that it did, though I was a bit nervous anyway. No need. The three girls loved it. Seeing them all on the edge of their seats, singing along to the Christmas carols (or in Josie's case, dancing) was one of my very favorite memories ever. And as the girls are beginning to learn about different composers and to appreciate music, and Sam beginning piano lessons, the timing was perfect.

(Note: The girls absolutely love the Baby Einstein classical composers series. We renewed them from the library a dozen times, and finally for Christmas I purchased a few. They are able to recognize different composers after listening to these. . . . and I should add, so am I , as my music education is just beginning.)

I'm sorry for the long-winded post! Lastly, I think that this quote is an excellent answer to my career question . .. it is the task ahead of me. How simple is that! . . .
When you ask someone, "What do you do?" do you really mean, "What's your job?" Can you imagine asking George Washington what he did for a living? He would have answered that he was a farmer. He worked at home, except when he wasn't at home. His role in history reveals that he could have responded, "I'm a farmer, a citizen, a stepfather, an army officer, the president, Martha's husband, etc." Even a craftsman such as a cooper or a goldsmith in colonial Boston would have farmed and constructed and participated in church and community government. For most early Americans, their daily duties were defined by the task ahead of them rather than by a particular career they had been trained for." Leigh A Bortins The Core

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