Thursday, August 23, 2007

Thankful Thursday

One of the forums I frequent on the web is a group that focuses on preparing for holidays. Towards this goal, we have certain days that we use every month to work on certain holidays- one of which, in preparation for Thanksgiving, is Thankful Thursday. On a thread today, some of the members have listed things they are thankful for. In the spirit of this lovely idea, I have listed below some of things I am thankful for:
1. My wonderful husband, who indulges most of my whims, and loves me anyway.
2. My two beautiful children, who, in spite of being real pains about 80 percent of the time, really really really try to be good.
3. All of the benefits of living in a 'civilized' society, including but not limited to, clean water, abundant food, easy transportation, and decent housing I don't have to share with any of God's critters that I don't want to.
4. One of God's critters that I do choose to share space with-my 80-ish pound Alaskan Malamute baby, who is scared to death of thunder and other loud noises and will cry for hours during a thunder storm, but who charged out of the house this afternoon to 'save me' from a really horrendous storm I was trying to escape. (It's good to have someone who loves you unconditionally no matter what. Dogs are cool.)
5. Being in charge of my own domain. It's good to be the queen.
6. A mother in law I actually like. When I talk to friends, and they complain about their mil's, I just smile, and relate how we go shopping together.
7. A country where I choose how I educate my children. Private school, public school, homeschool-in the good ol' USA, it's all good.
8. A country where I tell my manic-depressive, unmedicated crazy neighbor where to go, and then smile and laugh with the cops about how crazy he is. (Seriously, the man is completely in need of some serious meds, maybe some shock therapy. Hmmm, I wonder if I can buy him a gift card for that?....)
I could go one forever, but I won't. What I want to know is, what are some of yours?

Friday, August 3, 2007

Summer Must-Do's

Growing up, we always had summers off from school. At the risk of dating myself, those were the days when we left the house after breakfast, knowing we had to be home by the time the streetlights were on. Wherever we were for lunch was where we ate lunch. If someone misbehaved, whatever parent was available corrected them. We spent whole days at the neighborhood pool, baking ourselves to a lovely brown. We stayed up late because it was light out still, at 9 pm. Dinners were simple things, with lots of fresh veggies. And how we had fun!
I tried to recreate some of those memories with our own children when they were small. I was reminiscing with my dd the other day, about all of the things we normally do in the summer. Since she's 12 now, she's not really into most of them any more, but they've made some great memories. I thought I would share some of our fav things to do in the summer:
1. Catch fireflies in a cleaned out mayonnaise jar with holes punched in the lid.
2. Camp in the backyard.
3. Roast marshmallows and hot dogs for dinner.
4. Swim all day at the city pool.
5. Spend Saturday at the movies. All day. One movie after another.
6. Spend a morning at the library. Have a cone from the ice cream shop for lunch. Spend the afternoon on the living room floor, on your stomach, sipping a soda and reading the books you checked out in the morning.
7. Have a bike race. (Let your kids win!)
8. Find a creek. Dangle your feet in it while breathing deeply and watching for tadpoles.
9. While you're at the creek, look for milkweed, then find some caterpillars on it. Take them home, put them in a jar with the milkweed and wait for them to turn into butterflys.
10. Last but not least, wait for the hottest day of summer, play hooky from work, crank the air conditioning, order pizza, pop popcorn, and pop in a christmas dvd to watch. (Some of our favs: Home Alone, The Grinch, Charlie Brown) Don't even think about the fact that there are only 144 more shopping days until Christmas.
If you do all of these things before fall arrives, I gaurantee you will start fall refreshed and ready to face the usual rush of new activities. If you don't have time to accomplish them all, I highly recommend number 10- it was always my favorite!