Showing posts from February, 2010


Number of years we enjoyed our minivan: 4Number of times I thanked God for a reliable vehicle: countless
Number of months it's been paid off: 10 Number of carseats/booster seats it has carried simultaneously: 4 (down to 2 as of last month) Number of miles we drove the green machine in the four years we owned it: 80,000+ Number of songs sung, giggles laughed, tears cried, reprimands given, naps taken: untallied
Today: Number of hours spent scrubbing and sweeping interior of van: 2 Number of minutes spent writing description on Craigslist (including everything I could think of that was wrong with it, in detail) and posting pictures: 30 Number of inquiries I received in the first fifteen minutes of posting: 2 Number of minutes later that prospective buyer was test-driving the van: 35 Number of miles I walked home vanless, with cash in pocket and license plate in hand: 1
Could that be a record? My head was spinning.
Goodbye little green minivan. May you press on for thousands more miles and keep …

Lily's journal

Lily has been begging for a new journal since she filled her previous one several days ago. She writes some, she draws a lot. She scrutinizes and observes her world and the records it for her own reflection and inspiration. She is far more consistent with journaling than I have ever been. (This is a confession, ya'll. And a pledge to do better.)
My dear friend Shannon gave me a sweet little nature journal for Valentine's Day. It's cute, and I'm a sucker for all things paper, but Lily was completely enamored with it. So I gave it to her. She danced and cheered happily, hugging her new journal to her heart. (I hope Shannon doesn't mind my regifting her gift.)
As soon as she finished her happy dance, Lily took her journal, found a "perfect" pen--boy is she like her mother on that point!--and personalized it. What she wrote on it warmed my heart to its very core.

Nothing, and I do mean NOTHING, fills me with more joy than when my children spontaneously express t…

The Under-Appreciated Carnation

You are delicate yet resilient.
You bend with the wind and the rain in silent submission yet raise your face to the morning sun with delight.
You take no notice of your under-appreciation. While lovers head straight for the regal rose, you wait contentedly for just the right person who needs the joy you bring.

You are beautiful, but simple and humble. You give full credit to your Creator for your beauty and trust Him to meet your needs without toil or worry.
Little carnation flower, I want to be just like you.

Fasnacht Day Revisited

It's true. An entire day of the year is named after our family. Or your family, too, if your last name is Shrove.
Last year I actually made Fasnachts, and I wrote a photo essay to document the event.

Step one: Find a couple of cute guys to be your sous-chefs.

Step two: Mash some 'taters. Lots and lots of 'taters.

Step three: After all the mixin' is done, think, "This is way too runny." Reread the recipe. Add another cup of flour.

Step four: Melt several galoops of lard. (That is an official culinary measurement.) Feel your arteries harden and your waist begin to bulge. This is the authentic frying agent of choice, for the whole point of fasnachts on Fasnacht Day is to rid your pantry of lard before Lent begins the following day. Of course this really is a moot point when you actually have to go out to the store to buy lard for the first time ever just for the sake of the donuts and never, ever keep it on hand.

Lily's Special Day

Four years ago, a two-year-old walked into the upstairs room of a government building in southern China and changed our lives. Those years seem like a whole lifetime. Not because they have been difficult, but because they have helped to define my life, a life that would be incomplete and gray without her.
We celebrated Lily's Gotcha Day anniversary yesterday. I asked her what she wanted to do to celebrate her special day and she requested to walk the dog to the park. So that was certainly high on our priority list. "And open presents." Well, it is like having two birthdays when you celebrate such an important day as becoming part of a family. Much to Seth's dismay, who is NOT happy right now that he was born in mommy's tummy and his Gotcha Day and birthday are on the same day. "I NEVER get a Gotcha Day," he cried. It's been a rough weekend for him with all the attention Lily has gotten. I've been extra patient and cuddly with him.
Lily and I als…