Archive for October, 2007

“Does anybody really know what time it is?”

I do now, but I didn’t Sunday morning.

As usual, with my recent sluggardliness and pneumonia recovery, I slept till about 7:45 AM.  I lay there for a few minutes, thinking how difficult such a late start would make my day – it was going to be hard to get the laundry going before leaving for church.  Suddenly a light of relief dawned in my crusty brain:  it was Daylight Savings Time day, and I had forgotten to set the clocks back the previous evening.  That meant that it wasn’t really 7:50 AM at all; it was actually 6:50 AM, which meant that I could get caught up, and everyone else could sleep for another hour.  What joy!

So I pulled on my bathrobe and stumbled down the hall to re-set the boys’ clocks and urge them to return to bed.  I set Andrew’s and he climbed back in.  I set Josiah’s and he fell back in.  Coming out of his room, I met Jessica coming down the stairs from the attic, where she had just finished her morning shower.  Uh-oh.  She could have slept an hour, but didn’t know it.  I would clearly be in hot water.

I announced the news to her and she was most gracious.  Scott was still out praying, and I figured he was a big boy and responsbile for his own clock(s).  I returned to the Little Girls Room to catch up on some Bible reading.  When that was done, I’d hit the laundry.  My, what a glorious day it would be!

Sitting on the throne, Bible in hand, I was starled a few minutes later to hear Jessica through the vent.  (The air duct that feeds our bathroom also has vents through the living room wall.  By crouching down and putting one’s mouth to the floor in the living room, one can talk to whoever happens to be in our bathroom.)

“Mom, I think there may be a problem.  My calendar says NEXT Sunday is Daylight Savings Time.”

“That can’t be true.  I’m pretty sure it’s today.  I remember seeing on my calendar that it changes the Sunday before Halloween.”

“Well. . . I don’t know, but MY calendar says it’s next Sunday.”

Hmmm. . . this could be a problem.  By now it was 7:10  (or 8:10?) AM, and we had to leave for church no later than 9:00 AM.   I hadn’t showered, the laundry wasn’t started, who knew when Scott would be back, a big breakfast would need to be cooked and cleaned up, and the boys were back in bed.

Throwing the robe around myself again, I tore out of the bathroom and into the office, where I met Jessica.  Sure enough, I was vindicated.  My calendar clearly said, “Sunday October 28 – Daylight Savings Time Ends.”  However, Jessica insisted that hers said it ended next week.  How could these things be?  What to do?

Jessica suggested googling it, and sure enough, her calendar was right and mine was wrong.  The race was on.  I hollered at the boys that I had been wrong and that we had to get it in high gear to get to church on time.

We made it, and so did the rest of the congregation – who clearly have Jessica’s calendar and not mine hanging on their office walls.

I score 50% from the post below.

In school, 50% is failing, but I am choosing not to see it that way.

I not only decided what to cook for supper; I cooked it, and it was pretty tasty.  I tried a “blue ribbon” soup recipe from Taste of Home magazine, and Andrew and I liked it.  Josiah said it would have been okay without, “the green stringy stuff” (kale).

I removed the old maps from the dining room table and thoroughly cleaned the tablecloth.  I have yet to clean the table itself – who knows how maps under plastic stuck to the wood and left parts of themselves there? – pick out new maps, and duct tape it all back together.

I have not done a shred of desk work, but it’s just the boys and I and the evening is young.

I feel a burst of energy coming on

And I think I’m going to direct it in three areas.

1.  I will clear a lot of paperwork from my desk.

2.  I will switch out the maps on the dining room table

3.  I will decide what to cook for supper.

When you haven’t exercised in a month, and when you’ve spent the past five days dealing with fever, cough, fatigue, and the Big D, awaking free from all four gives you a (relatively speaking) burst of energy, which could wane at any moment and must not be wasted.

I’m off to tackle the above in reverse order.

Some would say I wasted an afternoon

I don’t think that’s really true. What happened is that after we got home from taking the big kids to AIM, and after we finished lunch at 1:00 PM, Andrew and I made a deal. If he did ALL the rest of the clean up, I would wash the dishes. So he cleared the table, put food away, and took out trash, while I ran a sink of hot soapy water. Then I had to wait for him to “empty the dishwasher” (put away the dry breakfast dishes from the dish drainer), before I could start washing. I hate washing with nowhere to go.

While I waited, I went to the piano and played around a bit. I have really been wanting to learn a jazzy arrangement of “Hark the Herald Angels Sing,” one of my favorite Christmas songs, but I couldn’t find a free one online, and I am too lazy and/or cheap to go to Springfield and pay for one. Of course, I have the standard four-part version in the hymnal, but I wanted something more harmonic with some chromatics and mood.

As I sat there, it occurred to me that I could write my own arrangement. Now, there’s a thought. I’m sure the last time I wrote any music had to be about 30 years ago. I had printed out some blank sheet music paper the night before, so I took a page and started trying to put down how I imagined such an animal would sound. Andrew took a sheet and started writing music, too!

That was about 1:10 PM, and at 6:00 PM, the Hark arrangement was finished. I think I even like it. However, it’s pretty hard to read, so I’m probably going to need to re-copy it. Ugh. After that, I’ll try to learn to play it well. It has a lot of accidentals, which mess me up a bit, and I’m not at all sure I have the stems going the right way(s).

The most amazing thing was that Andrew stayed right next to me at the piano all afternoon. He was writing is own songs, playing what he had written, and then copying a bunch of short songs he’s already learned to play from his piano book(s) to these sheets of blank staff paper. He didn’t complain at all! Maybe the guy really has some musical talent. I can just see it now: “the musical cooking gymnast of Walnut Shade.”

Survey says. . . pneumonia!

Which is both bad and good. Bad that I have pneumonia, but good that there is an identifiable cause for the way I have been feeling for the past five days.

The doc said it was good that I came in when I did. Evidently in a few more days, I would have been quite ill. She assures me that the antibiotics (samples, PTL!) she gave me will kill the infection, but that I may continue to cough for two to three weeks. May it not be so! The cough, I mean.

I am off to take a hot bath, plug in the vaporizer, and get a good night’s sleep while My Hero watches his beloved Red Sox totally smoke the Colorado Rockies in Game 1 of the World Series.

Jessica will make a super mom someday

For the past two days, while I have been either in bed sweating and coughing, in the tub trying in vain to get warm, inhaling various prescription drugs to open my lungs, sleeping in a stupor, or taking Josiah to his doctor appointment 1.5 hours away, Jessica has single-handedly run the show, and she has done it with aplomb!

She has dealt with Andrew, and that alone merits at least an Olympic bronze – I guess the event would be brother-bossing – and they are both alive. He even has some academics and piano practice to show for it. Even with all the challenges he brought to the scene, she managed to . . .

» do science with Josiah

» cook supper two nights in a row, including a new dessert recipe last night and a new main dish recipe tonight – yum, yum, yum

» keep her own academics going

» rehearse with Josiah for AIM

» finish the family ironing

» do her own piano practicing

» send out the AIM announcements

» and many other things about which I would be impressed if I were aware of them

WHAT a wife and mom she will be! But let’s not be getting any ideas, gentlemen.  There’s a time for everything, and now is NOT the time.

Things that are different in China

1.  The weather:  it was cloudy for 11 days straight.

2.  There are so MANY people!

3.  The food:  everything is bought raw and cooked fresh.

4.  The toilets:  you flush by pulling up, rather than pressing down.

5.  The floors:  no carpet, and the wood and tile stay clean because no one wears his shoes in the house.

6.  The cars:  narrower than ours

7.  There are a LOT of people walking on the downtown streets at all hours of the day and night

8.  No clothes dryers:  all laundry is hung out one’s apartment (“house”) window on metal bars mounted there for that purpose.

9.  Most people do not own cars – they walk or take buses or taxis.

10.  You have to pay to send your child to school.  You can pick the school.  You pay for books, uniform, and transportation.  High school meets six days a week (M-F 7:30 – 6:00, Sat 8:00 – 4:00) with 90 minutes off for lunch.

11.  Most stores are small and sell only one type of product.

12.  Bread comes in a package of about 6 or 8 slices.