Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008

Way back when Ellis and I got married everything we found for furnishing and decorating our home was pretty much orange or green. Maybe a few browns and creams mixed in to tone it down a bit . . .
Over the years I watched the styles come and go and thought about someday changing over to country colors like *dusty blue* or *mauve* . . .
Eventually I got rid of the hunter orange drapes and settled for tan with brown flecks. Then one day I looked at those dusty drapes. Something bit me .... hard. I took them down, washed and dried them and took them to the local good will store. We are off the road so far and have so many trees between us and civilization. We love the view through our windows framed with wooden trim.
When we finally had to get a different couch the boys for sure wanted one with plaid fabric. The dark lines were roads for their little cars and trucks. Believe it or not someone else was getting rid of their plaid couch (green, brown, cream and orange.) We had a few more years of plaid roads.
I watched with amazement as all of those same colors swung around and came back. People are actually painting their walls burnt orange and avocado green and mustard.
I didn't realize how many other things we had around here with *autumn* colors until we decided to decorate the Thanksgiving tables in the gym at Maranatha Bible School. We had a smaller group than usual this year and our decorator was visiting another *planet* for Thanksgiving. That left a handful of amateurs for the job. We had fun.
Ellis donated part of his lantern collection.
We rounded up all our candles and candle holders
glass oil lamps
a collection of ducks
table cloths, place mats
baskets, leaves
Indian corn, jute cord
tulle, potpourri . . .
We had a double line for the hot food.
Tables where we could sit and eat . . .
a table with salads, and another with desserts . . .
hot chocolate, hot apple cider, coffee . . .
all help-your-self style.
There was a pumpkin pinata filled with candy and fun stuff for the little people.
Conversation and games
A beautiful day!
Come, ye thankful people, come,
Raise the song of harvest-home:
All is safely gathered in,
Ere the winter storms begin;
God, our Maker, doth provide
For our wants to be supplied:
Come to God's own temple, come,
Raise the song of harvest-home.
Henry Alford, 1844

We plow the fields, and scatter the good seed on the land,
But it is fed and watered by God's almighty hand;
He sends the snow in winter, the warmth to swell the grain,
The breezes and the sunshine, and soft refreshing rain.

He only is the Maker of all things near and far,
He paints the wayside flower, He lights the evening star;
The winds and waves obey Him, by Him the birds are fed;
Much more to us, His children, He gives our daily bread.

We thank Thee, then, O Father, for all things bright and good,
The seedtime and the harvest, our life, and health, our food;
No gifts have we to offer, for all Thy love imparts,
But that which Thou desirest, our humble, thankful hearts.

All good gifts around us are sent from heav'n above;
Then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord for all His love.
Matthias Claudius, 1782

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Bus full of potential

Yesterday I remembered a child's book I used to read to the little people in my life. A boy went through the day collecting things that hop ... a grasshopper, a pogo stick, a handful of Mexican jumping beans ....

Bus 7 was full of Mexican jumping beans yesterday afternoon. No sooner had they piled on at the grade school four people dashed back inside to get forgotten items ... a math book, mittens and stocking hat, a hat for dance class ....

Was there a full moon last night? *checks calendar* No, that was last week. Oh! That explains last week.

We started on our way. Glancing in the rear view mirror I saw B holding J by the front of his coat with one hand and jabbing at him with the sharp end of his pencil. Threatening ... he wasn't actually poking him. I confiscated the pencil.

Next there were a couple boys teasing D. "Bite our fingers!" D was sitting in the corner of his seat with big sister between him and the boys. They took turns pointing a finger at him and then jumped back just in time to escape the snarling, snapping boy turned dog.

We are barreling down a state hwy ... I yell back and have big sister bring D up to the front seat.
D is going to day care today.
I told him, "You can't bite on the bus."
He says, "I won't tell the lady at day care I was biting."
I ask, "What about your teacher? I'm sure she tells you, 'Don't bite.' "
"If we bite at school we have to sit on a red chair."

I wish I had a red chair on the bus. When D gets off at day care he proudly tells me he is going to be five soon. He has a birthday coming up. Okaaay....

After all that when I check the rear view mirror again C is squeezing J's face. When I call back to ask, "What's going on?"
everyone has suddenly gone deaf. They can't hear a word I'm saying. C comes to the front of the bus when I motion him to come up.
"You guys are bouncing around like a bunch of Mexican jumping beans. Please don't pinch J's face like that!"
C nods agreeably.
"Please don't pinch anyone. Keep your hands off everyone!"
Vigorous nodding.
I let him go back to his seat.
I am so slow sometimes. Now it finally hits me. What was J doing back there to aggravate those guys? He got off scot free.
There is never an exact duplicate of students on the next day. There is always opportunity to look like a dweeb when you drive a school bus. I know that by now.

I love this quote ....
"We are sometimes made aware of a kindness long passed, and realize that there have been times when our friends' thoughts of us were of so pure and lofty a character that they passed over us like the winds of heaven unnoticed; when they treat us not as what we were, but as what we aspired to be." HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Kudos to Russell (my bus driver in grade school)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Alzheimers and Books

Hoping to divert a knock down--drag out family feud at the dinner table one evening I *remembered* a suggestion from the book, The Anti-Alzheimer's Prescription by Vincent Fortanasce, M.D. Memorizing lists . . .
I looked at Ellis and said, "I'm travelling to France and in my suitcase I took... Anne of Green Gables."
Ellis looked at me as if I'd grown a third nostril.
Thinking he was stumped for a book title I said, "You could take The Bobbsey Twins."
Another weird look that said, "I can do this all by myself thankyouverymuch."
" Well then, think of one for yourself."
Krysta started hopping up and down"I know I know! you could take the very best book of all . . . the???"
Ellis obligingly said, "The Bible."
Krysta announced she would take the book she wrote . . . Cat Book by Krysta.
Jorgan decided on Dog-Catching for Dummies after fighting it out with Deanne who thought it should be Dancing for Dummies.
On to Deanne who settled for Ever After even tho she hasn't read it yet.
Back around to me . . . Five Little Peppers
Gun Digest
Happy Hollisters (I wish I would have bought that set when I had the chance.)
I Gave My Mother 50 Cents . . .
Jane Eyre
Kissing Kin
Lassie Come Home
Mickey Mouse
Nightmare Academy
Quotes by Ben Franklin
Ramona the Pest
Stormy of Chincoteague (or is that Misty of Chincoteague?)
The Chronicles of Narnia
Uncle Tom's Cabin It took me a couple days to think of a title beginning with U That's why I have the Alzheimers book out of the library. =)
Vine's expository dictionary
Xylophone for Dummies
The Yearling
By the time we got to Z we each had the whole list memorized since it was repeated over and over again. We are starting to think that one day we will come home and find that our books have taken over the house. We'll close the door and go find a new house because this one is full and over flowing with books.
I found this quote in The Strength of the Hills by Elswyth Thane. "There seemed to be millions of cartons to unpack during that first Thanksgiving time stay, many of them containing nothing but books--books I had had before I was married, books a recently widowed godmother had donated from her own shelves to the cottage, and a lot more that were just in the way in New York, or that we hoped to find leisure here to read again some day. Will thus bestowed upon me his entire sets of Chesterton, Wells, Conrad and the like, which left room on the New York shelves for our more recent purchases piling up on tables and even on the floor as they carried on their mysterious monthly multiplication. He points out that when he removes one book from a shelf the others maliciously spread themselves to fill the hole before another can be inserted, and we even entertain the idea that our library has pups when our backs are turned. It stands to reason that we couldn't afford to buy all the books we seem to own, but they must come from somewhere, and we don't approve of stealing so it isn't that."