Showing posts from July, 2013

What Weaning Looks Like

I've never had a specific breast feeding philosophy except that I knew I would if I could and what a glorious gift  -- a seemingly endless supply of milk and healthy healthy children.
Weaning. Now this is a bit more difficult. 
Attached to the milk is a mom and a child, nourishment and calm. Detaching that is painful. Sore swollen pain. Heart wrenching pain. Headache pain. Crying pain. Temper tantrum pain. Schedule pain. An ebb and flow interrupted. A course that is good and right and freeing for both mother and child but in the middle of the wean, I can't see straight. 
The day seems to tarry on and on. I want bedtime to arrive because we haven't given up that feeding and when that feeding comes the headache, the sore and swollen, the built up energy and frustration all drain away and calm settles. 
It is the morning. The headache is already there. I don't know the connection except that William is making some rather harsh sounds and within my chest there is a push a…

Riding High

Before we left on our grand adventure, I asked the children what they would like to do while we were in Georgia. Amelia quickly announced her desire to go horseback riding. Fortunately, grandmother's neighbor, Laurie, is a horseback riding instructor and was available to give lessons this morning at 9:30 sharp. 

She walked the children by the trees to meet Biscuit and Cookies and through the stable to meet Tennessee, Buddy, Ginger, Ms. Kitty, and Punkin. William wanted to repeat the walk over and over again. "Mas" he says, for more. We did "mas" and "mas" and "mas" while the children brushed and saddled Tennessee and straight through their lessons.

  Laurie walked and talked with them. She gave them full responsibility. "You are in charge." She kept saying it to the children. Four big words pushed together for two children that know responsibility, but mostly for chickens and beans on a vine.

While George Wilder had his lesson, Am…

Traveling Towards The Sun

The travel window opened. We jumped through. It will mean friends and grandmother and granddaddy and Ema and Abuelo and cousins and aunts and uncles. It has been too long and we are ready.
After all, I’ve joined the mini van army and it’s time to be all I can be. . .
George stayed behind to write.  We organized it as best we could and headed north.
Our first visit was with the dear Adams family in Columbus Georgia. Clare captures play just beautifully. Jack, Esme, and Titus are just as willing, if not more, to jump into building traps and fishing with dead frogs and digging in the mud  . . .
After playing our hearts out, we climbed into the van again and headed to the farm.
Oh what fun. Fun in the SUN! It is out and bright and warm. Grandmother's flowers are brilliant. The bees are busy grazing from flower to flower. 

Cooking with seed pods, flower petals, leaves, old grain, and a little powdered paint led to rinsing off in tubs collecting water from…

Rainy Day Reflection

Our usual slow summer afternoons for gardening, swimming, cookouts, parks, and play are on hold. The rainy days have locked us in and down. The walls crawl up our backs and down our chests and press heavy there.
Slow growing in the garden. Chickens won’t lay eggs. The pigs feed bucket sloshes with water leaving muck and mud for the children to wade through to empty and fill and repeat again. Boots are a must. Shoes in summer do not fit together.
We line up the boots (or toss them) on the front porch and spend our days indoors making music, writing stories, lining up animals, pushing cars, reading books, Legos, puzzles, games -- and doing it again.
Seems like we are cooking and cleaning a lot. I’m painting the walls, trying to cheer it up and it turns into a long project I don’t want to finish.
Our beautiful Lucy dog heaves on the floor. It is hard to tell if she is getting old or if she thinks the rain is getting old, but she is still heaving and she is a middle aged dog.
George an…

Processing Produce

We are bringing in pounds and pounds of produce everyday now. I'm in love with eating all of it and storing some of it for later. George makes pickles and pickles okra nearly daily. He calculated that we've already eaten and shared up to 20 gallons and have about 40 more sitting on ready.

We hull the pink eye purple hull peas, eat some for lunch with cornbread and tomato slices and put the rest in the freezer in serving size portions.

The basil mostly becomes pesto. William loves it. I freeze some in ice trays and then store in sealed zip lock containers. The rest -- we spread on bread, eat by the spoonful or chipful or pretzelful. I've also made a tomato basil mint soup with carrots and onions. It wasn't perfectly delicious but it tasted quite nutritious.  The simplest way to serve the basil is to chop it up and sprinkle it over tomatoes along with shredded motzerella cheese and a drizzling of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

We are canning tomatoes but they come in s…

A Soaking Celebration

Pesto beard for William. The remnants of a frozen pesto cube drip down his chin. 
Mama's finally out of the shower at 3 p.m.. Gardens, friends, rain, produce, projects.  Snapped a picture of clean before it washed away in the rain. 
Amelia practices her typing skills while George Wilder reads a book. 
I read a small piece to the children about Independence Day. I explained that the country was much smaller -- only 13 states then. Amelia looked perplexed. She didn't get it. I explained it again. She asked, "It just doesn't make sense. Did God just create more states after that?" Wow. So we got out some maps and traced the colonies -- Florida isn't one of them and that just seemed odd to the children. 
And they needed to hear "The Star Spangled Banner" I've played Whitney Houston's version. I've played others. This time, I wanted to sing it. It is such a powerfully patriotic song and it just feels good to sing it. Last night, we danced in…


If shopping brought pleasure. If it seemed remotely fun to walk from store to store rummaging through racks, hunting styles and sizes and colors and matches, and flipping over tags hunting for a deal, then  perhaps our wardrobes wouldn't be such a mismatched collection. But they are. 
I admire the lot of you that has an eye for color and shape and style and seasonal ins and outs. I've been dressed by my sisters for quite some time and when George had his interviews last year, I summoned a friend to walk beside me through the great trial and tribulation of finding a good tie and slacks and a shirt and belt and socks. He needed all of it. Grad school sort of purged us of anything fancy.
On top of a short attention span, and loathe for malls and shopping, my soul doesn't jive with the clothing industry. Cheap fabrics, the working conditions of those creating the clothes, the horrible destruction of land for cotton harvests, and the overpriced white t-shirts hanging here and …