Domestic Bliss Report

Motherhood is hard work. If we don't stick together, we'll all fall apart.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Life with Louie

I was really proud of myself this morning. I found a red top with white, black, and khaki flowers embroidered on it and my black twill shorts. I actually matched. Even though it's Saturday, I still looked put together. Since I'm going to a concert this evening, it seemed like a good idea.


Louie's started real food--meaning the fish-flake like "cereal" for babies. Lunch today was a couple tablespoons of oatmeal mixed with milk and some scraped banana (jarred banana is beyond gross; the real thing is much better and too easy to pass up).
He declined to use the bib for wiping his face, preferring my shirt. He also used his spoon to assist in smearing cereal on me in random places. (Yes, at meals we each get our own spoon.)
I thought I could handle that, but then Wyatt "Urp" showed up. His post-nap nursing break resulted in a rather voluminous amount of spit-up all over the black shorts.

Sigh. I lay him on the floor to prevent further wardrobe assaults and he spits up again, this time managing to roll his back into it before I get to him. Finally, it's not on my clothes.
I don't know if that counts as payback, since I'm the one doing the laundry. Looks like I'll be changing clothes before confession this afternoon.

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Thursday, May 22, 2008

Touring... Detroit?!

Yes, I mean that seriously.

Back in my pre-son days, I'd get catalogs of trips to take with students. You know the kind; visit six different hotels in ten days kind of thing. Visit France, Belgium, and Monaco over spring break. There were all different kinds. I saw ones for Civil War battle sites, World War II sites, even Talkeetna in Alaska and a rain forest trip to Costa Rica. Nobody went to Mexico, though...

I got to thinking. We're a major metropolitan area. We have all four major sports teams, three of which play within the city limits. Here in Detroit, we have a fantastic art museum and a quality zoo, not to mention a worthwhile science center. Now we're even listed in Spectacular Strolls, as well. What's the deal? Why not have a Detroit touring experience?

Let's play with themes. The Immigrant Experience. To make it easy, let's go with the African history. We've got the Museum of African American History, right? We could start there to give the background of slavery. A day or two at Greenfield Village to show the technology folks were working with. Maybe a visit to a stop on the Underground Railroad. We've got the Motown Museum, too, for the twentieth century.

An alternative could be the early automotive industry. Come during the Detroit Grand Prix, check out the Renaissance Center, try the Rouge Tour. On your way out to Meadowbrook for a play, visit the Chrysler museum.

If you think that's too much heavy stuff, take time for a show. There are plenty to choose from, you know. Or take in a sporting event [if you haven't heard of the Tigers, Red Wings, Pistons and Lions by now, too bad. For your penance you can look them up yourself.] If the group I went to Quebec with can count roller skating, I can count a game.

Sure, Chicago has cool stuff. But so does my beloved Detroit. Who else has a theme and places to go with it? Post it and leave a comment.

More evidence

that my kids are weird. Like you needed more, right?

Madeleine's favorite part of math is the story problems.

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Friday, May 16, 2008

"Snakes... why'd it have to be snakes?"

The kids have seen Star Wars Episodes IV, V, and VI. Now with Dale receiving the LEGO magazine and TV commercials, they want to watch Indiana Jones. I'm not ready for them to see all the gruesome dead bodies, tarantulas all over someone's back, and melting heads. We're waiting 'til he's eight, when he'll probably be one of very few who know what the Ark of the Covenant really contained. You can roll your eyes if you like, but let me remind you we have a three-year-old girl here and I don't want to deal with those nightmares.

Anyway, I'm looking for swashbuckling type movies. I thought of National Treasure, but I haven't seen it. The Three Musketeers, though vastly different from the Dumas story, was along the same vein. My dad and I saw King Solomon's Mines back in the theater; does anyone have any help with that one?
[I do recall really bad reviews for that last one. Now you know where I get my movie tastes--my dad. He'd go every week when he was young, during WWII. Even if it was the same movie as last time. The newsreels were what inspired him to become a paratrooper.]

Since you were so helpful with Spaceballs (no, they haven't seen it), I thought I'd put it out there. Adventure movies for the young set?

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

"Uphill, both ways!"

"Do you know how many games I got to play on the computer when I was young? When I was three?"
"No, Mom..."
"None. Zip, zilch, zero, NONE. I had to wait until I was ten. So you're done with the computer. Go outside and play."

I didn't add, "And it was text only! No cute graphics or educational content! It was before the Commodore-64, even!"

Never mind that home computers were a myth at the time, and "educational software" didn't exist either. That's best kept between adults.

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Monday, May 12, 2008

So far, so good.

They're doing regular blood draws to check things; those keep coming back with good results. His spirits are good despite being on bedrest--I remember that from last year!

The kids and I saw him and they're okay. Madeleine told him she'd rather he be in the hospital and get better than home sick, so she's a smart girl. He encouraged us to go to dance class, even.

The cardiologist has said he expects Dale to get released by 5 PM Tuesday. Not a moment too soon.

On a related note: it's a LOT easier for me to blog about it than talk about it, so if I don't return your call, don't take it personally. It's a blogging disconnect, you know? These are just words I type on the screen. I completely forget that other people actually read them. People like my sister-in-law, my parents-in-law, other members of our homeschool support group, neighbors, friends...


This is hard for me...

but my best friend is at the hospital right now.

He woke up with what he thought was digestive trouble, but given what else it could be, we aren't taking chances. The kids think he's just at work and I'm desperately trying to be "normal."
And today's dance class day, with recital tickets to be purchased as well...

Prayers, please, that he's okay.

UPDATE 12:00PM: First EKG is good, but they're admitting him and going to do a stress test. More to follow.

UPDATE 12:40 PM: They aren't doing the stress test until tomorrow morning and thus are keeping him until then. Now, what and when to tell the kids? God, thanks for having me plan "leftovers" for dinner tonight...

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

How's your history?

What about your kid's textbook?

I am so glad we're homeschooling...

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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

A moment of clarity.

I"ve tried to come up with how to explain the idea of Mary and her sinlessness. I've tried the manhole analogy, which didn't click. [Two men walking down the street. One falls into a manhole; you get a rope and help him out. The other is on the same trajectory, but you holler "Look out!" and he avoids falling in it. Which did you save? Both.]
So I thought of another one.

Say there's this doctor. A pediatrician. He sees this patient in his office, where he recognizes the potentially fatal early signs of... diptheria, say. He immediately treats the symptoms, tells the parents to get the child to the hospital, calls an ambulance to get the child there, and is in touch with the staff at the hospital regularly. Now, the parents had just though the child mildly sick and were there for amoxicillin, but the doc knew how serious it could be and by acting saved the child's life.
The next patient is in for a well-baby check and gets the DTaP shot, thus eliminating the chance of the child getting diptheria.

Which child did the doctor save? Both, right? But they both needed the doctor, they didn't do it on their own.

That's how it is with Mary. She received the wholeness of God's grace at conception--she isn't sinless because of anything she did but what God did. She still needed God's grace; she just got it before she sinned.


Monday, May 05, 2008

College degreed is the new high school diploma.

Because these are the kinds of things I think about, I've formulated some opinions on education here in our wonderful country.

There are enough books about dumbing down our schools to give one pause for thought. When even 20/20 has a story on how difficult it is for bad or criminal teachers to be fired because of tenure, it's there. The upshot was they have holding tanks for teachers they can't let in the classroom, where they get paid to read the newspaper and drink coffee all day. [Never mind some were doing that anyway; now they're not doing it in front of students.]

I read recently that now a college degree is becoming less of a job or career placer and is instead a stepping stone. What one really needs today is a master's degree.

We could ask the question of why, forty years ago, a young man could graduate from high school and find a job that would support him and his family and now with that he can't find one to pay the bills he incurs while still living in his parents' basement. My father, God rest his soul, said more than once, "The least you should get out of a college degree is a job that you like." Now you can't even get that.
Perhaps it's the surfeit of degreed candidates out there, and as they become more plentiful the market gets pickier. In this economy, it's entirely possible. I don't think that's the whole answer, though.

If high schools are being dumbed down, of course colleges are going to have to develop more accomodations. It's a trickle-up effect. If one wants to teach a course on, say, Shakespeare's histories and one's students have no idea who Julius Caesar was or when the Pax Romana was, one must backtrack. Right? One loses precious time on the subject at hand by giving background that should already be there.

I'd also argue that it's also the proliferation of meaningless degrees. Which will be a whole 'nother post.


That menu idea

I know it's been something like four weeks since I posted a recipe. I've been busy. I'll resume it soon.

If anyone has any input, or has tried any of them, let me know what you thought.


"Why did you try to put the cat in the box...?"

"two minutes after I told you not to?"

He says, "I don't know."
What he means is, "I'm only five. I have a short memory and poor impulse control. I don't quite understand the consequences of my actions and the potential for physical harm either to me or the cat. I thought it would be interesting to find out what would happen, and, despite your admonition and my brief compliance to cease and desist, I went ahead with my original course of action."

Of course, if he could articulate all of that, he probably wouldn't be putting the cat in the cardboard box.

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