Monday, November 30, 2009




November 30, 2009

Outside my window... it's still dark, and the stars are absolutely brilliant. I went to the barn early this morning to feed, and the stars were so bright and shimmery against the velvety blackness of the sky that I just had to stop for a few minutes to look at them.  There are so many little miracles all around us, and yet they are so easy to miss..

I am thinking... about the same old thing, I wonder if the time will come when these thoughts don't always intrude upon my quiet moments

I am thankful for... so many things, too many to mention, but especially that Thanksgiving was a good day, and for the blessing of all of us being here together to celebrate.

From the learning rooms... R is doing better with her Market Math, she finally seems to be getting it, and M is breezing through his math book. They both finished their "Wordly Wise" books... I should make a run up to Denver and pick up the next book in the series.  And I'm excited to see both of them actually beginning to use the cursive writing we've been working on for so long...

From the kitchen... I made  (whole grain) pizza and breadsticks for last night for dinner. Mmm... homemade pizza is good.

I am wearing... blue jean, black henley, denim "Longhopes" shirt

I am creating... still working on Christmas crafts

I am going... to try to keep an open mind about M's care

I am reading... Let Me Hear Your Voice: A Family's Triumph Over Autism, by Catherine Marshall. It's a book that has  caused a good friend of mine a lot of pain, I told her I'd read it and tell her what I thought of it.

I am hoping... that we have an uneventful December... no crises or catastrophes, please.

I am hearing... the clock ticking and Emma snoring... the house is very quiet (kids are asleep).

Around the house... hopefully the countertop guy will start ripping out our countertops today. I can't wait! (This will be our second set of new countertops in 6 months, but that's a whole other blog post...)

One of my favorite things... putting up the Christmas decorations, this house was just made for reds and greens. I haven't started decorating yet, we'll probably get the tree next weekend.

A few plans for the rest of the week... it's a busy week.  Lunch with S and her former foster mom today, tomorrow - pdoc appointment, Wednesday - horseback riding, Thursday - STAY HOME, and Friday - go to TCH and donate blood.

Here is picture I am sharing... it's the wise men from my favorite Nativity set.

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving morning musings...

The pies (one pumpkin, one peach, one apple) are finished.

The rolls and bread have been mixed, kneaded, raised, shaped, raised and finally baked. They are just waiting to be warmed...

There are still potatoes to peel, cook and mash, casseroles to put together, salads to assemble... and of course the turkey to cook.

One grown daughter is home, the rest of the family will be here in a few hours. The house will be full of children, laughing, delicious smells, the joy of all being together... as well as memories of past Thanksgivings and a bit of sadness... missing loved ones who can't be here.

I got up early this morning to grab a few quiet minutes before the noise and busy-ness of the holiday begins. I wanted to post a Happy Thanksgiving message here, and also to take note of at least a few of the many things I have to be thankful for.

It's been a very difficult year in many ways, but I've been so blessed in the things that are really important.

Family ~ Joe, the man who for almost 33 years has put up with me (for those of you who know me, nothing else needs to be said!), and five amazing children, each of them people I really like, enjoy spending time with, and am proud to know (and could say that even if they weren't my children!). My grandchildren... miracles all... and a son-in-law who is a good man, and makes my daughter happy. I've also been so blessed with "family" that aren't related to us... Granny, and S, for example... people who are part of our family, part of our lives, and have a place in our hearts... even though there was a time when we were strangers to each other.

Health ~ what an incredible blessing.

Woodstone Prairie ~ I do love where we live. The fields, wildlife, and quiet of it nurture me. It allows me to have Murphy, Tilly and Tucker (who I sometimes think of as my "therapists"... they are very good listeners), and gives M and R the freedom to just be themselves. To go outside and play without the dangers that being developmentally delayed and living in the city would bring. R can have her horse, and M has space to just be himself... to howl, or run around banging sticks around on things, or even sometimes to just sit glassy eyed up by the road, watching the occasional car go by. Somehow his illness doesn't seem as BIG out here...

I could go on and on but if I took the time to type out all my blessings the turkey would never get cooked (and we'd have nothing but rolls and pie for Thanksgiving dinner!). So I should stop now and head out to the barn to feed.
Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!!

Have a wonderful day...

Monday, November 23, 2009



November 23, 2009

Outside my window... the sky is gray and it's snowing lightly.

I am thinking...about the same old same old problem and what to do about it. I think what I'm doing is probably the mental equivalent of having a sore tooth and not being able to leave it alone. Too bad there isn't some way to get a quick shot of novocaine and  have the problem "extracted"...

I am thankful... we made it through another weekend with S, I feel like we're pushing the envelope with this, but (so far) M is handling having her here amazingly well.

From the learning rooms... a friend gave us an American History course on DVD that ties in beautifully with the history curriculum we're doing. Each lesson is 30 minutes, and it's a high school course but the instructor is engaging enough that I think M and R will still be able to get a lot out of it.

From the kitchen.. getting ready for the big meal on Thursday. I need to remember to start thawing the turkey!

I am creating... some Christmas gifts, nothing fancy... just some little things I thought would be fun.

I am going... to stay home most of today I think, tomorrow we're heading north to help B (dd#2) move, then we'll probably stay close to home for the rest of the week (no black Friday shopping for us!)
I am reading.. nothing, I've had too much on my mind to read much lately.

I am hoping... (yes, I am always hoping)

I am hearing... the house is silent, Joe's left for work, the dogs are settled, Tilly isn't even insisting on her breakfast yet.

Around the house... I'm not getting much done.

One of my favorite things... the sweetness of the children (and young adults) I know who are developmentally disabled, including M, R and S.

A few plans for the rest of the and hassle the insurance guy, call and hassle the countertop guy, call (but don't hassle) Social Security about M, help daughter move, make Thanksgiving dinner for 15  (or 18, depending on if some friends come or not).

A picture I'm sharing...

These are favorites of mine from Thanksgiving of 2005.
My grandson J...

..playing peek a boo with Emma.

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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Yesterday was another beautiful day, so we spent most of the afternoon outside. I took a bunch of pictures, thinking it might be a good time for a picture post.

The first thing we did was let Tilly and Tucker out into the big pasture to graze.
M getting Tilly's halter on...

R getting Tucker's.

R kept Murphy in the pen and groomed him and got him ready to ride...

It looks like she's giving him a talking to about something... and check out his ear turned towards her, he's definitely paying attention to whatever discussion they are having!

While R was doing that, I was showing S how to drive the little lawn tractor so she could harrow the pasture. (The kids love any excuse to drive that little tractor!)

I love this picture... the body language says it all. S was harrowing and the tractor got stuck in the mud, then one thing led to another and it ended up rolling backwards over the homemade harrow. (Notice the wood post just in front of the back tires? It's part of the harrow... We couldn't go forward, but we couldn't go backwards either... the tractor was really stuck.)

We ended up having to lift the tractor off the harrow to get it going again...
S back at work, looking much happier this time!

R rode out in the front pasture...

... then went up and got the mail.

 It's cool, she doesn't even have to dismount to get the mail... She just eases Murphy over very close to the mailbox, leans all the way down (he's a tall horse!) and grabs the mail out of the box.

S rode too, all by herself... which she hasn't done for awhile. Murphy did fine, although I couldn't tell if he was listening to her and doing what she wanted or just meandering around the pasture while she held on.

We finished up with a quick walk up the road... I'm looking back down the hill, towards the house, at R on Murphy, and S.

M was still harrowing (it's a good job for people who can be a little obsessive!), as we walked up the road and just as I took that last picture I could hear him screeching and howling as he drove the tractor around the already harrowed field.

So I swung around and took this picture... "The Mad Harrower"

He said he was making crop circles. :)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

craftiness part 2

The other craft we've been working on lately is making cinnamon/applesauce ornaments. We'll probably use some to make garlands (also using dried fruit) and some just alone as ornaments or gift tags.

They're super easy to make... just mix equal parts of applesauce (store bought works best because it's not as chunky) and cinnamon. I used about 1 cup of each, and it made about 25 ornaments.  (Yeah, you need a lot of cinnamon, but if you buy the giant size of cinnamon at Sam's club it's not too expensive...)

Mix the applesauce and cinnamon together..

(M gave up on the spoon and just used his hands)

You can add a little Elmer's glue to the mixture if you want, but ours held together just fine without it.

Once it's mixed,  roll it out between two pieces of waxed paper... not too thin, or the ornaments will be brittle.

(M getting ready to roll his out...)

Then use cookie cutters to cut your ornaments out.  Remember to make a hole in the top of each ornament, before they dry, for your ribbon or cord to go through.

I just dried ours in a sunny window, on waxed paper. It took about 36 hours for them to completely dry... Once they were dry enough to turn, I turned them over from time to time so they would dry a little faster. Mmm... they smell so good!

And here they are, all dry and ready to be made into Christmas decorations...

We are going to string them up in a real garland (with dried fruit, etc) later... but this gives you the general idea. :)

Friday, November 20, 2009

It's not all snow storms, wind, and ice in Colorado, at 6,300', in November.

Here's the flip side...

It's about 60 degrees outside this afternoon and sunny, the last snow is almost completely melted away and I spent "quiet time" on the front porch, watching the animals graze (periodically chasing Murphy out of the front yard!)...

...and serenading the rabbits, deer and any other animals that might be close enough to hear.

 (Thankfully the neighbors live far enough away NOT to hear ;) )

The past couple of days have been rough, but that hour outside left me sun-warmed and feeling good.
I hope tomorrow is warm too, it might be a good day to start fixing up the dog house/chicken coop!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

a perfect day

Today was one of those rare, almost absolutely perfect days... Since I can't bottle it (and pull it out later when I really need it) I decided to blog about it instead.

It started out like a regular day, a little bumpy. M was edgy and irritable...almost falling apart this morning over some little thing. But I should have realized there were some exceptionally good vibes hovering over the house when he didn't fall apart and when,  just a little while later, our family support coordinator from the CCB came over for R's annual review and she: 1) didn't ask for any receipts for the services R's received and 2) said they had extra funds for any one-time kinds of expenses we might have! (Ummm.. extra funds? Am I hearing you correctly?? Yes, I think I can find some way to use those!! )

The "Twilight Zone" kind of feeling persisted when the kids wanted to play quietly in their rooms after quiet time... leaving me time get my regular "quiet time work" done (stuff that's hard to get done while keeping track of M), and to go out and fix (again!) the fence around chicken Lili's enclosure.  (Amazingly...  not only was the ground not too frozen for me to put a new fence post in... I actually found a fence post just the right size, that wasn't needed elsewhere!)

The kids were settled and happy for so long that I even had time to practice a new song I'm learning on the guitar. For those of you who know me IRL and may be saying... "What's she talking about, she doesn't play the guitar!"... I bought a guitar last summer and have been teaching myself to play. It's something I've always wanted to do, and playing my no-frills little acoustic guitar has become one of my most favorite things to do.  Having time to play, uninterrupted, was heaven...something that usually happens only after the kids are in bed!

Hmm... you know it's been a good day when all my paragraphs end with exclamation points!

During school time R was happy, cooperative, and didn't even get angry and throw her new teenage attitude around when I insisted we continue following our history curriculum, rather than going with her plan of just skipping everything except World War II. (Because, in her mind, nothing else is important...)

While R did school, M went out and finished shoveling the trail to the barn... with NO complaints... after going up to get the mail without being reminded. Shoveling the trail was the VERY same chore that just yesterday, when I asked him to do it, he became angry to the point of hallucinating wildly, just a heartbeat away from totally losing control, and needed extra medication (and about 30 minutes) to pull himself back together.

Today it was no big deal...

He even went back out, after he thought he was finished, when I asked him to clean up some snow he'd missed...

It was very weird.

But I'm not complaining, it was lovely to walk out to the barn this evening to feed, and not have snow dribbling down into my boot.

M also breezed through school and he worked so steadily and with such good focus that I managed to sort through some files that have been laying around for months waiting for me to get to them.

The sun has gone down now, and we still seem to be in some strange, but very nice, parallel universe (to the one we usually inhabit)... Dinner is simmering on the stove, the kids are sitting together happily, watching a movie on M's ipod. (How in the world can they watch a movie on that tiny screen?). At this point I wouldn't be surprised in the least to see Ward Cleaver, Jim Anderson or Mike Brady come walking in the door calling "Honey, I'm home..."

My stars seem to be in perfect alignment today. If it wasn't already cold and dark outside I'd drive to town and buy some lottery tickets...

craftiness part 1

I love this time of year, and one of the things I like best about it is being warm and cozy inside on a cold snowy day, working on a fun craft with the kids.

Last week we made Thanksgiving candle holders (they are the same as the ones my daughter made for Halloween... we just used leaf cut-outs for decorations, rather than jack-0-lantern faces).

I thought I'd post how we did it, in case anyone wants to borrow the idea...

Before we started, I gathered together some small to medium sized glass jars, and cleaned off the labels and old glue. I also cut some 1" squares of tissue paper in fall colors, and cut out a bunch of leaf shapes from construction paper.

We started by painting the  outside of the jar with Mod Podge.

While it was still wet the kids carefully covered the  jars with the little squares of tissue paper. Then we painted over the tissue paper with more Mod Podge, making sure all the little squares were completely covered, and let it dry.

(In this picture, R has finished covering one jar with tissue paper and has painted it with Mod Podge and is starting on another jar.)

After it dried, we added some leaves cut out of construction paper, sticking them on with more Mod Podge.

Once we had the leaves arranged the way we wanted we coated the entire outside of the jar with more Mod Podge, making sure the construction paper was well saturated and completely stuck down. (It's probably best not to have big globs of Mod Podge, if it's too thick it won't dry transparent.)

We let it dry, then put a candle in the bottom of each jar and sat back to admire our work.

Aren't they pretty? They'll be an awesome Thanksgiving decoration...

Monday, November 16, 2009



November 16, 2009

Outside my window... it's still dark, although in the east the sky is beginning to lighten to gray.

I am thinking... about S.

I am thankful... that my kids are home, happy (most of the time) and secure in their family.

From the learning rooms... I am so looking forward to doing school this week. In the midst of our day to day ups and downs, it's so nice to sit in our sunny little classroom and just focus on the task at hand. Whether it's working on multiplication, learning about the ancient mound-builder peoples of North America, or just practicing some handwriting, it's all good...

From the kitchen... I did the month's shopping last Friday, so the cupboards are overflowing and there are lots of mealtime possibilities. I always feel a little bit rich when the cupboards are full.

I am creating... lots of things lately,  the kids and I have been pretty crafty... but I'll save the details for another day.

I am going... down to town later today for more yarn. I'm working on a project, and am almost finished... but ran out of yarn just a couple of inches too soon. (I was really hoping I had enough...)

I am reading... an old book that a neighbor (who has now moved away) gave me called Green Mansions. The copy I have came out in 1944 and has a note inside from the publisher explaining that because of the war, and rationing, this book had less pages than previous editions. I thought that was interesting...

I am hoping...that the changes to M's meds work (soon would be very nice).

I am hearing...not much of anything, the house is quiet, although I can faintly hear Tilly out by the barn, braying for her breakfast.

Around the house... things got stalled out in terms of the new floors, I need to get going again and get things moving.

One of my favorite things...(since I'm thinking about it) Tilly's bray... it always makes me smile. :)

A few plans for the rest of the appointment in town today, horseback riding and getting together with some people from our homeschool group on Wednesday. Thursday is my granddaughter's birthday and I'm hoping to sneak away to take her to lunch. And S should be here again on Friday. Hmmm... it's looking like kind of a busy week!

A picture I am sharing...
It's Tilly (with Tucker in the background). You can tell she spent years as a wild burro... While Tucker and Murphy are happily nibbling grass... she'd rather just eat out of the kindling box.

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I've been meaning...

... to post for for days, but the weekend passed by in a blur and I've barely had time to sit down, much less blog.

It's funny... I'd been missing S (former foster daughter of a friend of mine, and a special, although unofficial, member of our family) for days, and finally called her new foster mom and ended being able to have her here for the weekend. It was so good to see her and spend time with her, but it's also exhausting! Having three developmentally delayed teens in the house is challenging, especially when two of them need very close (even line of sight) supervision.

I'll catch up on my posting this week (only having M and R to take care of will seem easy, and I'll feel like I suddenly have a lot of extra time on my hands! :)
The kids and I have finally gotten things cleaned up after the big Halloween snow we had... It took forever for the snow to melt and all the water to drain off the little pasture. R and I went out several times to clean out the little drainage ditch, to keep it running...

...and after days of deep pull-your-boot-off mud the pasture is almost dry. M and I cleaned the paddock out... between manure and muddy hay, it was a mess! We probably moved 10 wheelbarrows full of muck out of that paddock (dumping it down into our little gully to decompose).

We also finally got the monstrously heavy doghouse (soon to be chicken coop?) moved up the hill to where I wanted it. It turned out to be much easier than I thought... B (dd#2) was here, and suggested "rolling" it up the hill. (Count on someone who spent years in college, moving from dorm, to apartment, to house, to know how to move something that's too heavy to move!) So that's what we did. B, M, R and I rolled it over and over again and it only took us about 20 minutes to move it all the way up the hill...

 ...and around the corner and up to the fence where I wanted it.

Yeah, it looks a wreck now... but it's built very strong (double walled with insulation between the walls) and should clean up well. Half the roof is missing because the dog house was too wide to fit through the back gate without removing it... Joe is going to put it back on with a piano hinge in the middle so I can open it up to clean it out.  I'll set it up on concrete pavers when we move it into place, and make a little door if we end up using it as a chicken coop. 

So it will stay where it is for now, while I'm painting etc, and when it's done we'll move it a few feet into the pen the kids and I made for Lili.

It's good to have those big jobs done. There is supposed to be more snow coming this weekend... but that's ok... I think we're finally ready for it.
There is a good-sized herd of mule deer who live in our neighborhood (which is made up of 5-10 acre parcels). Through the spring and summer we seem to be the "nursery"... the does have their fawns here (last year a fawn was born right down in our little dry lake bed... this past spring twin fawns were born up on the hill above the barn!), and spend the summer here grazing with their babies. The mature bucks seem to mostly hang out a mile or so north of here...

But in the fall everything changes. The bucks go into rut, join the does down here in the "nursery" and get stupid...  Stupid as in standing in the middle of the road, staring down a car, rather than running away... (unfortunately, that's "normal" fall behavior around here) and stupid as in following the does (and fawns if they have one) around constantly. Sometimes the only way to describe the way some of those bucks look... especially the young ones... is lovesick.

I took these pictures a week or so ago, of an older doe and her fawn, followed by a young buck through the big pasture. Normally (unless a dog was chasing them) the doe and her baby would wander slowly across the pasture, grazing as they went.

This time they didn't even stop for a nibble...

The buck was young (judging from the size of his antlers) and a bit tentative... but he was persistent... following the doe and fawn across the pasture, over the fence and down the hill out of sight.

Monday, November 9, 2009



November 9, 2009

Outside my window... I can see (if I stretch across the counter a little) the lovely new fenced in area the kids and I made for Lili yesterday. It's a good feeling to have that job done... now the dogs can't terrorize her and eat her food!

I am thinking... that I like the way I rearranged the living room and family room, I wonder why I didn't think of moving things around this way a long time ago. I'm also thinking about S... I've been missing her a lot lately.

I am thankful for... the blessing of an uneventful day.

From the learning rooms... the kids are both enjoying the new American History curriculum we started.

From the kitchen... I made a favorite of the kid's last night... homemade chicken nuggets, mashed potatoes and gravy, and home grown green beans (that I froze a couple of months ago). It was so good... I love that kind of food.

I am wearing... jeans, red henley, denim "Special Olympics" shirt, blue leather slippers

I am creating... the kids and I made candle lanterns yesterday (like the ones my daughter made a few weeks ago). They were easy enough for both kids, and turned out great.

I am going... probably nowhere today, but I think we'll head up to Boulder tomorrow.

I am reading... I just finished Children of the Holocaust (R checked it out to read, and I said I'd better preview it for her since it came from the adult section of the library.  After giving it a quick look I decided she probably should not read it... but did decide to read it myself), I'm looking forward to starting A Good Neighbor: A Benedict's Guide to Community next.

I am hoping... that things continue moving in a positive direction with M's pdoc

I am hearing... water bubbling in the teapot, Quin scratching at the door, and a strong wind blowing through the trees. It's funny, when we first moved here I didn't like the wind, it was unsettling.... but I don't mind it anymore, it's become a "homey" sound to me.

Around the house... I've gotten all the estimates for the work in M's room, now I just need to wait to find out who gets the job and when they can get it done.

One of my favorite things... a day like yesterday, we got a lot done but also had plenty of time to just be lazy.

A few plans for the rest of the week... school, hopefully a little more Christmas shopping, therapeutic riding, working at the library

A picture to share...

(a nighttime-in-the-kitchen still life)

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Friday, November 6, 2009

I discovered a quote today that I think is going to become a new favorite of mine...

It happened in sort of a round-about way.

R was gone to a birthday party today, and M stayed home with me. M tends to be unsettled and not know what to do with himself when R's gone, and today was no different.

I kept him busy working outside, then watched part of a movie with him, but by evening he was heading downhill, so I suggested he go in the classroom and get our big book of biographies (A Scholastic book with short bios of "Great Men and Women Every Child Should Know"). Reading to him usually settles him, and sometimes he just doesn't have the focus to listen for very long... so these short biographies sometimes come in very handy. He was too unsettled to even pick who he wanted to read about, so I just closed my eyes and opened the book.

The page I ended up on was the biography of Gabiela Mistral, who won the Noble Prize for Literature in 1945. Honestly... I'd never heard of her before, but M seemed to be settling as I read and we talked about Gabriela, so I suggested we go online and read some of her poems.
Here's one that both M and I especially liked:

Pine Forest
by Gabriela Mistral
Let us go now into the forest.
Trees will pass by your face,
and I will stop and offer you to them,
but they cannot bend down.
The night watches over its creatures,
except for the pine trees that never change:
the old wounded springs that spring
blessed gum, eternal afternoons.
If they could, the trees would lift you
and carry you from valley to valley,
and you would pass from arm to arm,
a child running
from father to father.

I do love the rich imagery of her poetry.

And here's the wonderful Gabriela Mistral quote I found...

"Many things we need can wait. The child cannot. Now is the time his bones are formed, his mind developed. To him we cannot say tomorrow, his name is today."

Isn't it lovely?

What a wise woman she must have been...

Gabriela Mistral (1889 - 1957)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

One of the things I love most about homeschooling...

... the kids haven't lost their love of learning and excitement at discovering something new.
Here is M, happily working independently looking up some facts for his history lesson.

He was excited about the "homework" I'd given him... pulled out the encyclopedias he needed, looked up the various topics he was researching, and once he found what he was looking for, carefully finished the assignment... all on his own.

For a typical kid, this is probably no big deal (although I'm thinking it's unusual for a typical 17 year old to be so excited about the assignment), but for a kid with the challenges M has, this is huge.

It was one of those lovely moments when it's easy to remember why we made the decision to homeschool all those years ago.

Monday, November 2, 2009



November 2, 2009

Outside my window... the sun is up, but the day is overcast and gray. The ground is a crazy quilt of white and brown (snow and mud). I'm watching several little wild rabbits hopping around and playing in the backyard.

I am thinking... about M and what to do next (and that I'm tired of thinking about M and what to do next).

I am thankful for... early morning time in the barn. The rich barn smells, the peacefulness of the quiet barn, the warmth and companionship of the animals.

From the learning rooms...we've been getting most of our regular school done and I've also been spending some of our school time each day work with both kids on the "Circles" curriculum. I think it's going to be a good thing for both of them, helping them understand relationships and boundaries a little better.

From the kitchen... I made a roast, potatoes and carrots last night in the crock pot. I'll use the leftover meat today and either make a beef pot pie, or shepherds pie... or maybe a Canadian meat pie (with sausage), they're so good...

I am creating... E and the grandkids made some beautiful translucent candle holders from old glass jars and tissue paper. They turned out so pretty I thought M and R and I might try to make some for Thanksgiving.

Here's a picture of the ones E and the kids made. I think we'll put cut-outs of fall leaves on ours...

I am going... to town later for an appointment, I will probably force myself to start shopping for carpet too. (Forcing myself because shopping with M is NOT an easy or pleasant experience!)

I am reading... I was rereading Roots, but put it down to read Bending Towards the Sun. I think R's WWII obsession is starting to rub off on me.

I am hoping... my sister isn't angry with me

I am hearing... a quiet house, Joe's already left for work, R is up in the loft, and the dogs and M are asleep.

Around the house...I've got to get things caught up, I don't feel like I'm getting anything done anymore.

One of my favorite things... walking through the dry leaves and hearing them crunch under my feet, or (even better) kicking through the thick carpet of dry leaves under the maple tree, and watching them fly up into the air and settle down again. Piles of leaves raked up waiting to be picked up (or waiting for a child to find them and jump in). Fall leaves in general..

A few plans for the rest of the plans for the week are uncertain at this point, probably a couple of runs into town, hopefully a get together with our homeschool group, if I'm really lucky some Christmas shopping.

Here is picture I am's not really one picture this time, but a series. The other morning R was outside and commented on how the sunrise was "wrapping" around our house. I looked, and she was right... Here are the pictures I took of the ""wrap around" sunrise:
Looking south/east...

... then east...

... and north/west. I couldn't go any further because the house was in the way...

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