Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Advice I Can Follow

When I want to be comforted with words, the most reliable source for me is Mary Oliver. I suspect this is a common feeling among my peers. She has spoken many things to me over the years and even past few days, but these words I have taken as personal guidance. I love to get advice that I can easily follow. She says:

"A lifetime isn't long enough for the beauty of this world and the responsibilities of your life.
Scatter your flowers over the graves, and walk away.
Be good-natured and untidy in your exuberance.
In the glare of your mind, be modest.
And beholden to what is tactile, and thrilling.
Live with the beetle, and the wind."

And now I will carry these thoughts with me as I go to the van to coax the children into the house, put Jasper down for his nap, prepare some lunch for myself, hang out with Lucy, then start on some chores - dishes, laundry, pondering what I might make for dinner, etc. The usual. It is more than enough.

Monday, February 25, 2008

What Megan said

You can visit Megan and Keith's blog for pictures of our farm visit and lots of other cool stuff too. Megan posted a Barack Obama video which Jasper loves; Barack certainly gets my vote, a vote for love, for healing, for recovery, for asking for forgiveness from the world, offering forgiveness for ourselves. For all of us - even terrorists, even George W. Bush. Let me be the first to say, George W., I forgive you. Let's try something else now.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Vashon Pictures

Today we played outside, we bought some clothes, I recovered somewhat from being awake yesterday for 19 hours! Megan woke me up at the farm at 3:45 am on Saturday morning, with the coffee already brewing so we could catch our 5:30 train in Wenatchee. Bless Keith and Megan for not only hosting us for three days but also having to rise that early themselves. Yikes! Anyway, then we had the other Browns for dinner on Saturday night, which I'm glad we didn't cancel, because we really needed to hang out with them, drink delicious red wine, eat yummy cheeses, pulled pork tacos, did I mention brownies? All Rob's doing, by the way... But we were all a little wiped today... Rob has picked up lots of slack, letting me sleep in until 8:30 and then go to Nia dance class too... And then we're back to it this week with the school and work schedules, lunches to make, playdates to have, hello mini-van.
Here are a couple pics Rob took during our Vashon day.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Good To Be Alive...

I have an endless theme, I think , that may be losing its charm with repetition, but I love the sun. I am, underneath a somewhat reserved, calm demeanor, a fiery soul, and the sun speaks to me. I like to ignite and be ignited - by ideas, by connecting with people - family, friends, strangers, by wind, by exercise, by home, by comfort, by discomfort, by change, by stability -- by the SUN... We've had a week and there will be pictures, I promise. But for now, fire up your imagination - Monday, the whole family took the ferry to Vashon Island to meet another Enki homeschooling family. The day, the ferry ride, the sweet family, and the island visit were fun for grown-ups and kids. We ate at The Monkey Tree - the kind of beautiful but unpretentious, cozy, homey vegetarian restaurant that doesn't exist in Seattle - that I know of - correct me if I'm wrong! We explored the beach and the forest. This was our Winter Break from school so we planned more adventuring for the week. The kids and I spent a couple of days hanging out at home which gave me time to finish reading The Red Tent - a light, but enjoyable and inspiring read. Then Wednesday I took the kids on their first extended train trip to Central Washington to visit Farmers Megan and Keith who are truly the host/ess's with the mostes's. The kids and I all drank in their sweet company, the delicious food, the farmhouse, the river, the animals, the sparkling snow, the snow-covered hills, the sledding, coffee break, tea time, and of course the infamous and daily cocktail hour. It was a perfect holiday and traveling by train with kids is my number one choice, certainly far better than planes, an improvement on car/mini-van. People are SO friendly, kids are so happy at seats or wandering about, snacks are available, including half-bottles of wine should the need arise. Bathrooms at the ready. Good, good times... But we're happy to be back in Seattle basking in Daddy Rob's love.

Monday, February 18, 2008


Lucy and Jasper, giddy with sunshine. No one can say these kids don't know how to have a good time...

Friday, February 15, 2008


Lately I have been feeling inspired. Inspired by the little songs Lucy is humming and singing constantly, inspired by Jasper's watercolor paintings, inspired by the wigeons whistling in a pond by the sea; inspired by all the parents I know who are so dedicated to their children and their well being; inspired by Rob who yesterday biked home up a bunch of ***-kicking hills after months of not biking and was REALLY happy about it; by how Rob and I's relationship is so strong we can easily withstand, and even become closer after a Valentine's day argument (we often argue on Valentine's day); by tulips opening; by turning yarn into a hat, a scarf; by Jasper proudly wearing Lucy's old sundress to parent-tot because he wanted to be a bluebell; by the pinkish-red sunrise that began Valentine's day; by the bright light of the almost 3/4 moon that was shining in the window in the middle of the night last night; by my mom and stepdad's grace and courage they have shown as they get divorced after being married for 25 years; by the mystery and magic of life unfolding in ways we'd never imagined.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Sunshine = Joy

Today Seattle had sun and we rejoiced. Lucy at school; me at Nia (dance) class; Jasper and I at Golden Gardens beach. Even though Rob didn't get to frolic in the sun, he caught enough of a glimpse to be inspired to ride his bike from work tomorrow. The kids and I had an afternoon of homebound bliss featuring a sweet visit with Grandma and Pop Pop, and finally as if our cups weren't full enough, Rebecca, our precious 21 yr old friend and sometimes babysitter, joined us for dinner. Rebecca gives me hope for the world. How did a 21 yr old get so wise?? Her calm, clear voice and earnest, compassionate listening and looking are so healing and brought our entire household into a more beautiful harmony this evening. For the first time in a long time, I felt clarity about the general direction our lives are going ALL DAY.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

What it is

I have been down the rabbit hole for the last few weeks, really, trying yet again to sort out what to do for school for Lucy. The date is coming to sign up or not for Waldorf school again. She has had such a wonderful year in Waldorf kindergarten, but so far, what I've decided is that it is over, Grover. Lucy and I are both intrigued with the idea of homeschooling and we want to give it a try. I would not be flying blind on this: I will buy a curriculum called Enki. It is inspired by many Waldorf principles, but adds in a more conscious focus on multiculturalism and old-fashioned skill building - two areas that have always felt lacking to me in Waldorf. If we choose to bail out of homeschooling, chances are very high we'd head right back to Waldorf. The Steiner school's holistic view of the child, the "slow school" phenomenon of spending more time learning deeply than teaching to a standardized test, cultivating a love and reverence for nature and imagination; that stuff and more really fits our family's values. This decision could, and very well may, change at a moment's notice too... So that has been my obsession; the rest of the family is going about their usual business. Here are some pics: