Sunday, July 31, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

50. The sparkle in her eyes every time someone wishes her a happy birthday.

51. Fresh pea pods, still warm from the summer sun

52. Finding rogue plants in the garden that grew from seeds that survived the harsh winter

53. An unexpected evening alone with The Boy™

54. The rain that both watered my garden and gave me an unplanned day off

55. A summer job that lets me enjoy the outside and sunshine even when I have to work on a Saturday.

56. A quiet morning with the girl who is turning into a fine,  young woman. (she also took that photo the other day on a walk)

Friday, July 29, 2011

In Which We Find a Missed Birthday

Before you think that I'm a horrible, awful mother (though I am sure I have my moments).. I didn't miss her birthday. We celebrated it this past weekend in a grand manner that I will share about it a moment, I just missed coming and posting her birthday blog. Once my summer job starts, life tends to get a little bit crazy and I tend to be hot and exhausted when I get home. About all the energy I have left at the end of the day goes into dinner and chores. Sad, I know, but it is what it is. I love my job at the blueberry farm and wouldn't trade it for anything, but that's another post. We are here to talk about birthdays.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

43. An afternoon catching up with my oldest and dearest friend.

44. Summer days that feel like summer days should.

45. A simple dinner made with summer's bounty.

46. Getting to leave work early on a hot, sultry day when I was feeling like the heat was getting the best of me.

47. My mom and my son both here for a long weekend visit.

48. The grace of God that is teaching me when to be quiet and when to put a filter on the words that come out of my mouth when dealing with my extended family.

49. Getting to share in the Baptism of two newborn twins at church this morning. 

Monday, July 18, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

36. A lovely day spent with my girl.

37. Doctor visits that start early and end quick.

38. A beautiful sunny day picking berries up at the farm.

39. His willingness to be so flexible.

40. A conversation about God's grace in the middle of a berry patch.

41. A gathering of family full of laughter.

42. Witnessing and celebrating the union of two good friends. 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

He Always Asks the Hard Questions

"If you could, would you do it over differently?"

I can't remember where we were now, perhaps in the car, him in the back seat, me in the front, but the question pierced through my heart. The question that I have been waiting to answer for 16 and a half years. The question that I have tried to answer in so many subtle ways over the years, hoping that I could impress upon him how much I love him and how grateful I am that he's in my life.

I took a deep breath and answered, "No, I would not." Without missing a beat, he said, "Why not?"

Sunday, July 10, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

29. An extra week off that I was not expecting this summer.

30. A new friend who gifted me with plants for my garden.

31. Canned tomato sauce from last summer that provided us with a wonderful dinner.

32. A body that can still go out and run 3 miles, even after a few months off.

33. The bounty in my C.S.A. basket, and the people who toil in the fields so hard to bring it to me every week.

34. A glorious hour spent reading in the sunshine before dinner, followed by a night of laughter playing Scrabble with my husband and daughter.

35. Dinner  with good friends.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

In Quiet and Silence the Truth Shall be Made Clear

We drove along to the city to do our weekly errands. Him at the wheel of the car, me in the passenger seat. We traveled along this road that we have taken thousands of times in the past ten years, and the silence in the car was deafening. I sat in my seat, quietly looking out the windows and taking in the scenery that seems to change every time I pass by it. I noticed the flowers and plants that were blooming or growing in people's yards, noticed that the state had been through and done some mowing of the wild grasses and flowers that grow on the side of the road, and thought about how we got to this place in our lives. He stole glances in my directions every few minutes, and I knew he was wondering if something was wrong. Wondering if there was a reason why I was being so quiet, and trying to think if there was something that he had done to upset me. I noticed, of course, and wondered why he didn't say something.

As if on cue, he asked, "What are you thinking about?" I turned and looked at him, and asked, "Do you really want to know?" The look on his face said, "Not really, I think I might not like it." He replied, "Yes, I do." 

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Evening Storms

During the past week we have had some pretty major thunderstorms roll through in the evening. Each time they send out the warning for high winds and 2" hail, I worry about my garden. I have never seen 2" hail but in early June, Keene, which is just 10 miles north of here, got golf ball size hail. That's pretty big. That would be pretty devastating. Not just for me but for the local farmers who make their living on the land. Monday evening, right around dinner time (which I'm sure ruined a lot of cookouts) we got hit with a pretty major storm. It poured like it hasn't poured in a while. As is par for the course, our road flooded right in front of our house. There are drains on both sides of the road, but they are old and can't handle this kind of rain. One of my most favorite things to do, is watch the waves created by people who are crazy enough to try and drive through it.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Summer is for Salad

I'm not a sandwich kind of girl when it comes to lunch. Growing up, the only option we had at my house for lunch was sandwiches. Peanut butter and jelly or cold-cuts and cheese. Sometimes we had tuna, but more often than not, it was the above choices. Sometimes for dinner we'd have grilled cheese, or a Steak-Um (remember that?) sandwich, but those were a rare treat. Don't get me wrong, I like a good sandwich. There is nothing like a grilled portobello cap sandwiched between the top and bottom of a fresh roll with roasted red pepper, lettuce leaves and fresh sliced tomato served with grilled sweet potato fries. Bring it on.. but not for lunch. I much prefer a pasta salad, rice and vegetables, soup, leftover dinner (sometimes), and salad. If I'm going to have tuna, I have it over baby spinach with kalamata olives and goat cheese. So much better than a boring sandwich.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

A New Garden

Now that the fence has been replaced, and the herb garden has been developed, it was time to tackle the other side of the playhouse. The Tower of Doom™, while blending in just a little bit better, sticks out like a sore thumb from the back yard. On top of that, the cement slab still hasn't been buried yet, because it needs to be lowered one more time to put the router up. The router, however, costs a LOT of money, and The Boy™ is still saving. Once we bury around the base  I plan to do some type of vines that will grow up the base of the tower and make it look a little prettier in the yard. Well, the part that's not 40 feet up in the air anyhow. In the meantime, I put in a flower garden behind it.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Let Freedom Ring

Our annual 4th of July cookout this year was combined with celebrating my daughter's graduation from Middle School. She was a trooper and agreed that two big parties would be crazy. Here are some photos from before the party on Saturday. The weather was gorgeous and we had a really great time.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

22. Good friends who make difficult situations easier.

23. Sore muscles at the end of the day that mean you worked hard.

24. Birthday cake at midnight, and the end of The Boy's™ birthday, to celebrate him, even if we had to spend his day doing crazy things.

25. Hearing the nest-full of baby birds making a ruckus  outside of the window.

26.  The willingness of a teenager to help when asked, without eye rolling and huffing.

27. Family and friends gathered in our yard, enjoying good food and each others company. 

28. A snuggly cat who greets me in the morning and then tells me a big story about what she did all night.