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What I’ve Been Up to-May (and some April) Edition

May 31, 2013
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There was an awful lot of this. No thanks to my boy, the team was the top seed in the end of season tournament and ended up as Coach Pitch Champions. Go figure. Catcher was my boy’s favorite position because of all the action.

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The annual Mother’s Day Weekend camping trip. Excellent, despite a heavy storm moving through Friday night. By Saturday everything dried out and a good time was had by all.

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There’s also been a lot of this–like every afternoon and Saturday. My girl is at the bottom of the picture. She loves backstroke. The middlest is swimming too and isn’t too bad at backstroke either.

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This ended the beginning of May. Her team had a great time and will play together again in the fall.

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There was some of this too. This is just every day life at our house–kids in pajamas getting stuck in buckets. We’re also big into costumes.

In addition to all this, I managed to read a little, listen to a little music, watch a few movies, eat out way too much, and cook a little.  Here’s what else has been going on.

Books:  After successfully reading my book last month (Prophetic Imagination by Walter Brueggemann) for the Transit Book Club, I decided to give May’s book a try–Colossians Remixed.  It’s been a while since I’ve been a fan of Paul’s letters in the Bible and I hoped this book would help enlighten me.  Not so much.  About a week or so ago, I finally gave myself permission to stop plowing through the book, and it felt fabulous.  The author was more philosophical than I have taste for and he lost me for the last time when he used forms of the word totalize three times in one sentence.  I am done.  I may try another Transit Book Club book at a later time (like Jonathan Martin’s Prototype or Sarah Bessey’s upcoming book), but I think for the most part I may finally accept I am not quite academic enough to keep up.

I also read Little Bee by Chris Cleave for our neighborhood book club.  The book was extremely well written and sucked me in.  However, based on the weight of the book, I don’t know if I would say I enjoyed it.  It broke my heart, because while fiction, it was realistic function and the fate that awaited Little Bee awaits too many women in our world.

With Madeleine I read Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper.  This incredible work of children’s lit was about a girl with severe cerebral palsy–she had no control of her body, with exception of her thumbs.  She also had a photographic memory.  However, for a great deal of the book, no one was aware of her high intelligence because she had no way of talking or communicating with those around her.  I loved this book.  I cried a couple times, mostly as a mother.  I could identify with the mother and cried when a doctor told the mother that her child would never learn to read, when she knew otherwise.  Loved this book.  With John, I am reading book 7 of How to Train Your Dragon–How to Ride a Dragon’s Storm by Cressida Cowell.  Like all the other books, it is entertaining and we’re both enjoying it.

In the not so interesting reading news, I am also reading Blended Learning in Grades 4-12:  Leveraging the Power of Technology to Create Student-Centered Classrooms by Caitlin R Tucker.  In my interview process, I learned that education looked differently than it did 7 years ago thanks to this new fangled invention called the Computer and the Internet.  One of my interview questions was about blended learning and while I learned what I could about it in all my free time in less than a 48 hour period, I knew I knew nothing.  So.  I bought a book.  It’s been helpful, but seems to be more about  online discussion groups than about blended learning (which is receiving instruction via the internet/computer).

I am excited about maybe being able to read a bit more this summer.  I have four books on hold at our public library.  I used Mrs. Darcy’s Summer Reading Guide to help me out a bit.  I love the public library for fiction especially–it’s free and I don’t have another book to take up shelf space by the time I am done.

Music:  My college aged cousin mentioned how she’s finally perfected her 90’s Pandora station on facebook.  She listed some of the artists and it took me back, to when I was in college.  I promptly went and bought one of my favorite albums from that time:  Toad the Wet Sprocket’s Fear (which, by the way, is not a Christian album, it is loaded with all sorts of bad words so I am stuck listening to it while the kids are at school.  It’s good cleaning music).  I haven’t succumbed and bought Live’s Lightening Crashes yet, but I sense that may be my iTunes purchase in June.  I’m officially old.  I acquirde a couple of newly released albums in the past couple months as well.  The Steel Wheel’s newest album, No More Rain, has been played frequently, especially my favorite song, “Kiss Me Like a Stranger.”  I also bought Natalie Maine’s album, Mother, because I loved the Dixie Chicks.  However, I missed the rest of the trio and am not loving Mother.

TV Shows:  I watched season finales of my old favorite shows; Grey’s Anatomy and Castle.  I decided it would be fun to start watching Season 1 of Grey’s Anatomy as well.  It’s like looking at old yearbooks.  I missed the first season of Grey’s Anatomy and it’s great fun to watch it now–especially knowing how the story progresses.  I am thankful that Meredith Grey has gained weight and that Alex Karev has grown up a bit.  I will enjoy watching the first several seasons this summer while there is nothing else on TV that I want to watch (except for So You Think You Can Dance, which I LOVE!!).

Movies:  Most of our movie watching occurred at home.  We watched Silver Linings Playbook, which I really liked.  We also finally watched The Hobbit and I looked at my cousin’s pictures of Hobbit holes simultaneously (she’s in New Zealand studying until July).  We went to the theatre and saw Iron Man 3, which I loved.  I must admit, I love superhero type movies.  Iron Man and Wolverine are two of my absolute favorite superhero characters.  Love.

Restaurants:  Heads up for those locals reading–At Freebirds, kids eat free Sunday evenings, Monday’s and Tuesday’s.  This helped carry us through the overlap of baseball and swim seasons.  I think I may have eaten enough Freebirds for quite awhile though.  Elevation Burger‘s drive through next to the North Costco is also open now–however, the efficiency of the drive through is debatable.  The first time, I scooted right through.  The second time, I sat and waited forever (and it was much busier the first time).  In the not eating in the car category, I ate at Elizabeth Street Cafe for the first time ever for my birthday.  I loved it.  Curtis wasn’t impressed with their Bahn Mi, not authentic enough for him, but my dish (with flank steak) was incredible.  I got a nutella eclair for dessert that I was supposed to share with Curtis, but I kinda ate the whole thing before I remembered to share.

Eating at Home:  The cooking at home has been a little sad this month, with swim practice ending at 5:15 and all.  I am left with not an awful lot of time to cook.  Plus, we’ve had a lot a cabbage in our CSA box this month so this past week, so we ate lots of cabbage dishes.  I actually am not complaining about that.  I am looking forward to making Peach Blackberry Pie in the coming month and having a bit more time to make supper. I am still cooking a lot from Jerusalem and continued to be pleased.  I just made their version of Mujaddara and it was fabulous.  Favorite dish made this month though, had to have been the Pollo Enchiladas Rojos.  Mmm….With my birthday money (and a Christmas gift card), I got a fancy ice cream maker–the freeze the bowl ahead of time kind.  I would like to work on perfecting frozen custard (also known as French Style Ice Cream).

This incredibly long post is linked up with Hopeful Leigh’s What I’m Into (May 2013 Edition)

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. May 31, 2013 10:57 pm

    I left a comment earlier this morning, but I think I’ll try again using my Twitter account. If I’m duplicating something I’ve already said, sorry!

    My kids have soccer, t-ball/softball, and dance going on right now. I’m looking forward to the break from it all that July will be.

    That bucket picture is hilarious. It looks like something my goofy kids would do!

    • June 1, 2013 6:21 am

      We’re almost at the point when we can drop kids off at a practice and not hang around–I think next year will offer more flexibility with that. Juggling is crazy stuff!

      I love how kids can find simple things to entertain themselves with. 🙂

  2. June 1, 2013 1:36 pm

    About Colossians Remixed, oh gosh, yes! You did the wise thing. It was really, really academic. I had to drop all my other reading material as well as other hobbies to focus and get through it. I went through with a pencil to underline what stood out to me but it was a trek, for sure! I felt like if I had gone through an edit I could have taken out about a third of the words and still gotten the same message through. Felt like a textbook. (Without the course credit.) My self-esteem in how smart I thought I was took a huge hit, lol. I’m glad I read it, but my poor brain might not be ready to show up again until the Prototype month. Totally looking forward to it; I already have the book! Also can’t wait for Sarah Bessey’s book. Happy to hear you are considering participating with those, please do; I love the book discussions. Last month’s was terrific!
    What a wonderful full life you have! Love the pics, especially the bucket one. Totally did a double-take. 😉

    • June 1, 2013 8:18 pm

      Thank you Jamie, I do have a wonderful full life! 🙂

      There was some in Colossians Remixed I did really like (and marked up), but it was such a relief to quit trying. It’s nice to have the freedom to feel like I can quit (which is very new to me—I used to finish a book–no.matter.what.).

  3. June 9, 2013 5:07 pm

    I read Prototype on the plane and it is so, so good. I’m going to have to reread it before the Transit Book Club. I had a similar reaction to Little Bee. It’s good but it’s weighty and I didn’t like how it ended. My CSA just started back up, too, and there’s lots of cabbage. I like it but I’m particular about it, too. Recipes would be appreciated!

    Thanks for linking up with What I’m Into!

    • June 10, 2013 8:04 pm

      Here are 18 of my favorite cabbage recipes 🙂 http://melscooking.blogspot.com/search/label/Cabbage

      I kept a food blog for several years (just finally fell away from updating it a year or so ago). It was mostly just the easiest way to catalog my often used recipes. My favorite cabbage recipes most often have lime juice in them or fish sauce. Speaking of which, we have a cabbage in our fridge right now I need to start using!

      I am looking forward to reading Prototype. I’ve enjoyed the little of Martin’s writing that I’ve read online.

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