Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Gift That Wasn't

It was Avonlea's idea.
There, you know it will be a good post when I start out blaming my daughter.
Avonlea had inherited our old camera and she thought getting a kids camera for Rose, for Christmas, would be fun.
I admitted to the fun potential and bought Rose a snazzy pink camera. I failed to read the fine print, or any of the print for that matter. Print, that boasted of the camera's ability to take videos, edit pictures, and play video games.
Last week, Dave saw that Rose's card was full and decided to delete some pictures and video. The laughter that accompanied this procedure was curious.
There were many pictures of my friend and I having tea. The kids had hidden and taken incredibly embarrassing pictures of our animated discussion. There was also some video. (No comment on that.)
Then there was video of me in bed reading. This wasn't so bad until the boys jumped in next to me and you see my arm begin randomly smacking them. I was still reading and have no recollection of doing this. But there it is, on video. Apparently I beat my children if they disturb me while I'm reading. Who knew?
Then there were the pictures of Dave getting dressed. (All I can say there is, better him than me.)
Then we got to the photo shop area of the camera where the nasty pictures of us were distorted, made into puzzles, had crowns added to them, or possibly all three.
Rosy showed me one of the puzzles she had made out of a picture. I was having trouble figuring out what it was so I asked, "What is that a picture of?" She twinkled an answer, "It's your bottom."
This was all on Rosy's camera. Apparently, Avonlea as well, has been documenting our family life. She's videoed Rowan disobeying and Ma Glo calmly washing the dishes while Rowan disobeyed. She also took video going down the path to the creek for her friends to see, unfortunately she tripped on the way down.
Yesterday, I hit my camera limit when Rosy cried because Rowan was using photo shop on a picture she didn't want photo shopped (or something equally disturbing). I took the camera and hid it in the back of my closet.
Where the only family documentation it can produce is of the state of disorder of my shoes.
Better them, than me.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Last night, after sitting in front of a smoking fire for an hour, I went out to get another log. I was astounded by the comforter of white downy snow tucking the yard in for the night. How did such beauty happen in so small a time?!

This morning I reached up in the cupboard for oatmeal bowls. As my elbow came back down it accosted a goblet that fled to the floor and shattered. It was a beautiful, thick, blue goblet my husband had given me for my birthday. I was astounded at the wreckage that occurred in such a brief amount of time.

It only takes a moment to break or to cover. A moment to shatter a soul with my words or to tuck insecurities and faults under a quilt of love and forgiveness. Words, sharp as shards or soft as snow.

The fire is smoking again tonight, I need to pry myself off this settee and get another log. It's the work of a moment but it makes all the difference.

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Island

I just wanted a cup of tea.
Seems such a simple thing to ask of a day, doesn't it?
Now I suppose I must clarify that a cup of tea, to me, is much more than a beverage.
It's a destination.
It's my "island of peace in a turbulent sea".
My pink teapot, my Czechoslovakian teacup, my Ironstone cream and sugar set, these are my island scenery. My Bible, my journal, are my sun and sand.
But there were "miles to go before I rest" and I knew that those miles included children.
The first wind to blow me off course came from Grant. We were doing our customary Monday Laundry (believe me, it should be capitalized when you only do it once a week), when Grant asked, "Can you be a girl and a boy at the same time?"
 I always try to understand where they are coming from with these types of questions before I jump in and answer, so I said, "What makes you ask that?"
"Well, God is neither male or female and we're made in His image, so why are we one or the other?"
I wildly threw open every file in my mind even vaguely related to this subject and laundry was suspended while I explained the sovereignty of God, the implication of "made in His image", and finally a little info on testosterone and estrogen and how some women have beards but that's not normal. Avonlea threw in some helpful information about soy
He said, "Oh, okay."
End of conversation, but it lasted quite awhile, and now I was off course.
Bible came next. Our passage this week was about the "Man of Lawlessness." Neither of the kids had heard of that term and we began discussing the anti-Christ.
I'm not going to record that conversation here, because it was long and because it ended with Avonlea drawing a picture of him (entitled Son of Satan) and ripping it to pieces in a symbolic rage.
When we were done with Bible it was 9:30a.m. and I was exhausted.
Rowan's school work came next and was relatively painless.
Posy was next and she made me cry. Which made her cry. Which made us both apologize without really knowing what for. She tried to cheer me up by saying, "How about I try reading again in a couple of years." She might have something there.
I went up to make lunch. I was back on course and I could see the waves lapping at the shore of my island, but I couldn't hear them because Avonlea was practicing all her instruments.
After lunch came gales from friends. Phone calls that left me thinking, news that left me perplexed. I prepared my tea in quiet while the kids played outside.
Rosy came in from playing outside to change because, "I tried to potty behind a tree, like Rowan does, but I missed."
I nodded absently, it was too late, I had made my tea. I could smell the black leaves infiltrated with honey, my eyes were on the island.
I had everything in hand and I headed to my room.
At the top of the stairs I met my toothless wonder.
"Look what I found Mommy!"
He held up the book "Alice in Wonderland." It was a large book. Huge. I opened my mouth...
"I know you love to read this to me Mama Daaaarling!" His gums smiled his confidence...
The island became obscured by mists.
Sometimes tea is a destination, and other times it's just a beverage, sipped in between pages of Alice in Wonderland, finished off by a blond girl, cuddled on your lap, wearing clean pants.

Sometimes we land on a different island than we set out for.

Sometimes, the island is a bed, where three travelers maroon on a velvet quilt for a while....an "island of peace in a turbulent sea."
A destination.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Pictures and Laments

I am extremely random today.
So much so, that while talking to a friend on the phone this afternoon she voiced the question, "How much tea have you had today?"
Rose and I butted heads in school this morning.
We had company this afternoon.
Dave went and picked up our beef for the year at the butchers and I messed up the order.
I forgot I had a dentist appointment tomorrow.
I don't know where my mother is.
Dave tried to have a bon-fire with the kids and almost set the yard on fire and I didn't really care.

We were at the cottage for a week between Christmas and New Years. I did nothing there except play with my husband and children, take walks outside, and eat chocolate croissants. I had no phone and no computer. I loved it.
I came back to this world, the weight of it's responsibilities, and it's been a shock, like the cold water that shoots out of the shower when you're expecting it hot. I know the hot will kick in eventually and a nice warm temperature will emerge and I'll be comfortable again.
For now, I'll leave you with pictures of our season and family.
Good night!
Rosy racing

Grant and the last kitten

Ready for presents!

Avonlea took a picture of me having tea on Christmas

I took a picture of Avonlea playing the harp on Christmas

Our family dinner

Amy and Avonlea

New dresses for the girls

My cottage breakfast

The girls room in the cottage

Avonlea relaxing with the kitten

Tea in the cottage den

Orchard with light snow

Our creek!


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