My friend over at www.tigerlilytinkering.blogspot.com has a great idea to do a Monday children's book (or sewing book) review, and since I fully intend on checking it out every Monday, I thought I should also do my part and contribute. I'm a loooooong way from reviewing sewing books, unless one considers, "Huh? But how do you...? Is that even possible?" a review; but children's books I can do. I am a huge fan and unrelenting critic. (Ask Winona about this and she'll tell you that I will flat out refuse to read any fairytale as retold by Disney Books. Sleeping Beauty is the worst and it is a great source of friction between my eldest and me. I simply won't read it... and she simply won't have it. Sorry, sweetpea--let this be your greatest incentive to learn to read. Mama won't do it.)

But, we received this one among a stack of other hand-me-downs from our cousins a month ago
and it is magic.
Its stories are whimsical, sweet and humorous
and its illustrations are pure gold. 
This picture makes me want to go to bed.
And wash my brown socks just so I can hang them to dry. 
 The Giant is wonderful and cute, the witch is feisty and ornery and the little boy just wants everyone to be happy. The whole thing just makes me smile. 
In this story, the feisty, ornery witch is at her broom's end with the Giant, whose movements about the 'hood cause her house to shake and the bats to fall into her brew among other things. So, she does what any self-respecting witch would do--brews a concoction. What it does I shan't say, for a review should not be a spoiler, but it delights my young readers...  

and me! 

Date Night, with a difficult and wonderful twist



My date was a little shorter and a little pinker than usual, but she was a great date. We went to see Into the Woods at South Eugene High School and had an incredible night… on a few levels.

The obvious one being that any night with Winnie at the theater is a good one. She eats it up—everything from the music (“How many violins are there?”) to the sets (“See mom? They made those to look like books. But they’re not.”) to the characters (“So, the witch isn’t all bad. Not all witches have to be bad all the time.”) gets this one going. Throw in fairy tales, princesses, a pretty hilarious cow and high school girls and we’ve got our selves a winner of a night.

On a less happy, but very incredible level was what I experienced in that auditorium tonight. For those of you who do not live in town, two amazing young men—Seniors at South Eugene High—died tragically on the coast two weeks ago when a sneaker wave stole their lives from us while 4 of their friends watched in desperate helplessness. They were not being foolish or careless—they were victims of a freak accident that has left our community stunned and, now, two weeks into our mourning. Jack’s funeral is tomorrow—and until tonight, I’ve debated whether or not to go. I know his parents from my work at the Y—and the web of connection goes deep with many people in my Y community, so I thought I’d probably attend his funeral. Then, I went to Into the Woods tonight—a show that was dedicated to Jack and Connor. I watched close friends of theirs tell the metaphoric tale of how life inevitably leads us into the woods where we get lost, encounter danger, fear, loss and heartache, and emerge somehow whole and hopeful. The kids on stage tonight had a collective talent that rivaled any show I’ve seen (including on Broadway) and their “show must go on” resolve oozed from their pores as they belted out lyrics which under normal conditions would have been poignant and tear-jerking. Tonight, as they sang No One is Alone and No More through their own (character –appropriate) tears, my arm hairs stood on end. And when the curtain came down and then raised up again to show them out of character and holding each other up as they laughed and cried their way through the curtain call, I knew I had attended my celebration of these two young boys who were taken from us and have given us so much to remember, learn and become. “Sometimes people leave you, Halfway through the wood, Do not let it grieve you, No one leaves for good. You are not alone. No one is alone.” 

Not a normal blog post, I realize, but these have not been normal times… I am once again reminded of how fortunate I am—we all are—to have this amazing day.


The Good Times



We have very different senses of humor, but they are, for the most part, compatible.

I, Jezebel, get on Winona’s nerves when I try to get in on her playthings. The thing is, Winona makes things look mighty fun, then she makes it so easy to just go up and take said “things” and give them a whirl myself.

She gets sad---mad even---but she doesn’t actually DO anything about it. She sometimes tries to explain to me the virtues of sharing; other times she calls upon mom or dad to reinforce the rule of “taking turns”--- but no matter what the fallout from her end, I have time to play. By the time justice is demanded, I am usually content to move on to something else, and wander happily off….

I sometimes think this makes Winnie even more mad.

And it should be noted that she takes my stuff, too. Quietly and wearing a look of feigned innocence that sometimes mom and dad actually BUY and that SENDS me. And trust me… there ain’t no doubt about whether or not I’m upset about something. I think subtlety is a profound waste of time.

I am equally passionate about what thrills me. Winnie thrills me most of the time…. and I thrill her. We laugh a LOT, and she is really good about helping me out with stuff. She takes a real pride in knowing how to do things like open lids, get doll’s arms through shirt holes and reach snacks in the pantry. I forgive the slight patronizing tone because she’s being so good about getting me what I want. And, as recently noted, what’s good for me is good for all in the house.

In other news, I hate the vacuum and I love the moon and the Boom Boom Pow song by the Black Eyed Peas, so I say, “All done vacuum!” “Boom Boom Pow?” and “Mommy! Moon!”  hundreds of time, in rotating and repeated fashion all. day. long.


It was the sort of day that called for galoshes, leopard skin pants
and a fancy pink dress. You know the kind.

We built bridges, dug for worms, played in the clay soil,
threw rocks, leaves and sticks into the creek
and got wet and dirty. Happy Spring! 



 Have we mentioned Lucy's home? 
She's on a tight leash these days, so she's in camera shot a lot more often. 
And she's so pretty, I can't help myself. 

 Turn down your speakers... My voice is really close to the microphone. Whoops!


 A wonderful Valentine's Weekend surprise came in the mail from Gramma and KooKoo, complete with beads and necklaces that kept us project-focused for a very long time. Long enough to create this wonder:
 Then, the skies cleared and we headed out to the garden. In Round One of Mom vs. The Blackberries, the Blackberries won, hands down. But she had a clear advantage over the weeds within her reach from where she sat and drank her coffee. Apparently, one must ease into the gardening season. 

This is our Secret Spot. Shhhhh. Don't tell.

As we all know, Monday is a very special day which requires me to show up at school with 24 valentines ready to lovingly drop into 24 friends' Valentine Bags. So, today, we got busy. 

I have made an extra special one for Connor. I am going to marry Connor. I've told him and I remind my parents daily that we have wedding plans to make. As far as I can tell,
 the only thing that changes once you announce your engagement is 
that Mom gets more strict about Disney Princess Movies.

I'm not into boys, yet. But I am into Playdough.
I'd be able to make something cool if only mom would 
provide me with a few more colors. 


This weekend gave us some sunshine to play in, so we headed outside
to have a tea party!

We also met some friends for a show and some pizza....

 Lucy's home. :) 


Hello again, after a long, exhausting month. 
We go to bed happy... so grateful for all the wonderful
things that fill this life. 
So grateful that Lucy is home home home. 

Bodhi's pretty happy about it, too.