Dec 23, 2007

Mixed Up Memories

Grammy and Grampy (aka my parents) arrived this afternoon via the train. It was a much anticipated moment. We had to drive into DC to pick them up and that was fun ... really ... I mean it. It was. We drove past the National Christmas Tree and everything. It's from Vermont this year, so that glimpse was special too.

We arrived home to the comforting aroma of chili bubbling in the crockpot. All I needed to do was make cornbread and start rice for dinner. Which I did. It's my dad's birthday today. He's never been much for celebrating his birthday, but he gets a shy silly grin when we remember him and it's always been my job in the family to remember. I like that job. It's my princess joy.

We sat, ate, talked and laughed our way through dinner. And as we did, dinner yesterday came up. I'd made a childhood standard ... oven-fried chicken. I'd had it so often growing up, I really barely considered it above macaroni and cheese on the priority scale of entrees. But it seemed like the thing to make for dinner last night. So I did. Harumph. Ross declared it a meal fit for a king and has been whining ever since about my holding out on him for 20 years.

What. Ever. I relayed this story to my mother and she got a quizzical look on her face and said, "Did I make that before you left home?" Uh. yeah! About that time my father piped up with, "Hey, this chili is good, but I've never had it served over rice before."

This stopped me cold.

My father taught me to make chili. He taught me to use diced up stew beef or venison, depending on what is available at the time. He taught me to use a little maple syrup and other secret ingredients.

And he always. But always. Served it over rice!!

So we all fell out laughing at our mixed up memories ...

Dec 20, 2007

Catching Up

It's been far, far too long since I've posted anything here. Life's been far, far too busy and somehow chaotic. Not that I've actually gotten anything done, mind you. I just have a dizzy head.

Our Thanksgiving gatherings were joyous and fun. We had a grand time together and I'm finding those to be more and more filled with joy each time we have them. Here are a couple of pictures:

Nov 16, 2007

... And We'll All Have Excema!

The painting and cleaning continue apace.

Six days til Thanksgiving. Four days until the first arrivals begin. First my sister-in-law and her family (three daughters, one husband) next Tuesday. Then my brother-in-law and his family (daughter, son, wife and aging dog) and my mother and father-in-law on Wednesday (with RV). All will be staying in or around our house.

Sixteen people. In or around our house.


For the last week or so I've been all itchy. At first, it seemed like poison ivy. But I don't go outside much and all the poison ivy around here is dead. And the first eruption was on my back. So ... it's not poison ivy. Then (the hypochondriac me) I thought it was my liver shutting down. Because of course everyone has liver failure in the normal course of their life. It took a day or so for me to remind myself that liver failure also includes violent vomiting and, um, yellow skin. It's not liver failure.

After much discussion with Jennifer, we've concluded it's stress-related excema. Wonderful. Not that I'm under any stress or anything.

This morning Ross was discussing the plan for the house (the remaining painting and cleaning) and how we're going to get it done without so much stress (read me ... yelling stomping and crying, or conversely sitting on the sofa losing all will to live) and with more happiness. John replied, "Well if we don't do that then we'll all have excema!"


And did I mention that the day after Thanksgiving every single known to me in-law is coming for a party. All 35 of them.

Deargodinheaven, what have I done?

Nov 7, 2007

How Many Women ... ?

I have received this e-mail forward from two separate women in the past four days. The two women I received it from do not know each other and are from completely different parts of my life. It's very funny because it relates to the fact that I have been on a rant lately in my house that no. one. can. throw. trash. away!!!! Some of you may remember my kitchen rant about the papertowel tubes that remained on the counter for several days. Yeah ... that. So, in honor of my friends ...

Q: How many women does it take to change a light bulb?

Woman's Answer: One! ONLY ONE!!!!

And do you know WHY? Because no one else in this house knows HOW to change a light bulb! They don't even know that the bulb is BURNED OUT!! They would sit in the dark for THREE DAYS before they figured it out. And, once they figured it out, they wouldn't be able to find the darn light bulbs despite the fact that they've been in the SAME CABINET for the past 17 YEARS! But if they did, by some miracle of God, actually find them, 2 DAYS LATER, the chair they dragged to stand on to change the STUPID light bulb would STILL BE IN THE SAME SPOT!!!!! AND UNDERNEATH IT WOULD BE THE WRAPPER THE FREAKING LIGHT BULBS CAME IN!!! BECAUSE NO ONE EVER PICKS UP OR CARRIES OUT THE GARBAGE! IT'S A WONDER WE HAVEN'T ALL SUFFOCATED FROM THE PILES OF GARBAGE THAT ARE A FOOT DEEP IN THE ENTIRE DAGGONE HOUSE!! IT WOULD TAKE AN ARMY TO CLEAN THIS PLACE! AND DON'T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON WHO CHANGES THE TOILET PAPER ROLL!!

I'm sorry. What was the question?

Nov 5, 2007

Player of the Week!

Whoooooooo Hoooo ... that would be my girl this week! I'm so dang proud of her I could just spit!!

Here's Coach's write up:


This was not an easy choice because there were so many stand-out performances this week! But a goal was given to Lillie two weeks ago and this weekend it was apparent that Lillie had set her mind to accomplish it. Throughout the week, a new level of performance rose from #94 and it became apparent in Saturday afternoon’s game.

Lillie performed well as a first line wing, with a new command in puck handling and protection. Her growing capability gives our team a new line combination option and Lillie was asked to center our “Checking” line on Sunday. To say she was successful is an understatement: Lillie’s line shut-out the opponent; doing the job they were tasked with. Lillie Andrews is in her “breakout” season. Look for great things to happen!

She is doing so well ...

Hah! And now we know what she can do, we'll have to see if some of this doggedness, persistence and determination can transfer to her ... schoolwork!

Nov 1, 2007

Non Sequitur

Driving home from hockey practice the other night. Lillie and friend in middle row of seats. John in way back. It's dark out. Voice from the back,

"Mom! Dad! I saw a deer on the side of the road!"

Ross, responding in kind, "That's cool, John. Was it alive?"

"I don't know, but it was dead."

Mindless chatter continued without abating from middle row as parents attempt (without avail) to control laughter. Just how do you respond to that?

Oct 31, 2007

All Hallows Eve

Today is the day ...

Trick or treating for LightBoy in the guise of Fimli, Gimli's second cousin (that is, a dwarf of MiddleEarth). He is beyond excited. I'm not certain what beyond excited is, but he's there.

LightGirl, on the other hand, has hockey practice. But things are are looking up for her too. She is, for the first time since late June, playing in the goal for practice. We think her knee can manage that. It's a short practice. She is also excited. I put together goodie bags for the girls who eschew trick or treating to come to practice. This is a surprise for them. It is also possible that I've put too much candy into these bags. I tried to balance it out with some lip gloss and nail polish and CoachWonderWoman is adding some sillystring (and more candy). But after all, Halloween really is all about the candy.

Here's LightGirl with GoalieGirl ... our new goalie. Yes, she is wearing LightGirl's jersey. She borrowed it for team photos that were taken last night as her red jersey has not yet arrived. They have become really good friends.

Oct 22, 2007

My Two Hockey Players

John ... in his first game. Notice the position of the puck; the focus of the other four players. The coach had just called out, "Get it John! The puck is yours!" In typical fashion he looked for the puck in the air.

Lillie ... skating at the Kettler Arena. This was during warm-ups for a game. She is sooo happy. I can't imagine how she manages to play this game. It's constantly amazing to me.

Oct 6, 2007

Hockey Boy

"John! Have you got your shin pads?"
"Do you have your skates?"
"Have you got your helmet?"

And so went the conversation all the way down to the rink. So when Dad and John arrived at the rink and discovered that the equipment was indeed packed.

In the hockey equipment bag.

In the foyer ... in the house.

Dad was not happy. But John *had* packed his equipment. Tomorrow he's going to also put it in the car.

The end of an early morning practice!

Sep 7, 2007

We're Baaack!

Back to the salt mines that is.

Back to the regular drill of practices twice a week. School and work and appointments and ... and ... and ... and.

But Lillie was soooo darn glad to be back on the ice with her peeps on Tuesday night. I thought the smile would light up the rink. It was good to see.

The rest of us might have been glad to be back at the rink as well. I'm not sure about that ... what do you think?

Sep 3, 2007

The Cut

A time-honored tradition up here at The Point is cliff jumping in "the cut." The Cut is a small cove enshrined by steep cliffs of rock that go straight down into about 300 feet of water. One must climb a goat's path of narrow foot and hand holds to various outcroppings and then jump or dive off. You then swim back around to do it again. The water is very deep and usually choppy making swimming difficult. It is needless to say, a right of passage when you are allowed to jump and dive off the rocks and swim in "the Cut." Just getting down the staircase is a feat of courage. LightGirl has been cliff jumping for the last couple of years. Here are pictures from this year with her friends from yesterday afternoon.

Best of Friends

LightGirl and her summer friends.

Grlz of Summer ...

Aug 31, 2007

Summer's End

We came back to camp for an end of summer trip. It's been a good visit. Marked by lots of family, interspersed with rest and relaxation. The weather has cooperated and fishing has been good.

We arrived to find Uncle Ben and his girls here. We knew they'd be here and the reunion was joyful. The wind was up, so swimming at Kingsland Bay was in order:

The next day marked the arrival of Uncle Kelt, Aunt Kristina, their gang and then the Grandparents later that night. Saturday was warm and windy and sometimes rainy. It was a strange day, but we had fun anyway. There was swimming, tubing, laughing, and all sorts of silliness. Capped off by homemade icecream and firewords.

The whole album is here.

Aug 16, 2007

Back on the Ice

LightGirl has been released and allowed back on the ice.

Wahoo ...

Jul 31, 2007


This is what we had for dinner the other night:

Jul 26, 2007

A Good Afternoon

After interminable waiting for an MRI and then for the reading of the MRI, we got the news yesterday that LightGirl does indeed have a tear on the anterior horn of the tibial surface of the left meniscus. Uhhhh ... okay. So, now we go see an orthopedist, right? Right. Her doctor gave me the names of three practices to call and the advice to call all of them and take the first available appointment. Okay. Where do I find the phone numbers? In the phone book. Huh? The phone book? That antique?

As chance would have it the first office had a cancellation for 1 p.m. this afternoon. Alrighty then. Dr. Gabriel Gluck. I recognized the name because I see his office sign every time I leave my place of exercise and think that his name is unfortunate. He has had a practice next to the hospital for as long as I can remember, because I've always wondered about his name.

When we appeared for her appointment the waiting room was empty. She was wearing one of her many hockey t-shirts ... this one happened to have the 2006 Stanley Cup champions on it. Some minutes later another patient arrived; a 20's-ish man and his tiny daughter ... who was adorable and outgoing with her tiny pink Crocs on and carrying a bright orange balloon. She started charming everyone in the place including LightGirl and I. Her dad mentioned that he wouldn't hold it against LightGirl for liking the 'Canes, but he was a Canadiens fan as he was from Canada. And so we began chatting about hockey and why LightGirl was even here, etc. We were happy to discover that Dr. Gluck was originally Canadian! Originally a hockey player! And loves to treat hockey players. Hah!!! What serendipity. Upon further conversation we also discovered that TinyCrockCharmer had been named for a hockey player and her father is a youth pastor at a local church. It was a lovely visit to the doctor's office and we hadn't even seen the doctor yet.

Upon a thorough examination which included more x-rays done right there at the office, we were pleased to discover that LightGirl will NOT need surgery for this. In fact, as it turns out, the meniscus tear is not the culprit at all. She has hyper-mobile ligaments and her knee cap (patella) had become unstable because of all the activity during her hockey camp. This caused a downward cycle of pain and instability between her quadricep and patella that continued until she couldn't use her knee because her quad became increasingly weak which caused further instability, etc. So, she needs physical therapy to rebuild the quad and stabilize the patella. With some patience and persistence she should be back on the ice in about six weeks. Yay for a good sports med doctor ... from Canada who likes hockey players :D

It was ... all in all ... a good afternoon.

Jul 1, 2007

Back At Camp

We're back at camp ... ahhhh ...

Summertime and the livin' is easy.

Arriving via the Essex-Charlotte Ferry

Jumping, diving and swimming ...

... taking in the scenery ...

... morning pages and coffee on the porch ...

Today was so cold, we had to bundle Sam up and let him sleep on the glider. He was shivering because we had him shaved.

The baby robins in the rafters.

Jun 5, 2007

Busy Weekend

It was a busy weekend at our house ...

Quilt show for me on Friday - no pictures.

Play off game for Pink Panthers Saturday - no pictures
Skills Competition for Red Devils Saturday - no pictures

Birthday party for LightBoy Saturday afternoon & night (sleepover)

Championship Game on Sunday morning for Red Devils
(they won)

May 1, 2007

Back on the Ice

Back to the rink it was for the LightChildren ...

While LightGirl took a bruising from large young men (college men!!) ... she did hold her own and managed to keep a cool head. I am constantly amazed by her self-possession. LightBoy had given her some serious props before she came out on the ice to these NCAA players, "Wait til my sister gets out here ... she's the best goalie EVER!" A hero to the boy, but she's only ever been in goal two times.

Meanwhile LightBoy was getting along with these young men like their long lost younger brother. And, he had to skate like the wind to do so. Suddenly his skating improved and so did everything else. He rose to the occasion and then some. Here he is up on his edges and flying along ...

... he then went on to pass his skating class with flying colors!! And have a mock battle with his skating instructor on the side.

Apr 9, 2007

It Is To Laugh

I am a Zen Mom ...

this, according to a silly on-line test at The test was entitled "Are You a Slacker Mom?" I was pretty certain that the answer would be a resounding, "YES!" So I took it to laugh in it's face (thus anthropomorphizing a computer test ... not a productive use of my time). I found a lot of the questions difficult to answer because they didn't have my precise answer as one of the choices. So I picked the closest one. And here I am, a Zen Mom:
How do you do it? Even when explosions are all around, you are able to take a deep cleansing breath and chant your mantra "this too shall pass." You are a calming influence on your kids in a hectic world.
That just pretty much makes me laugh out loud.

Apr 8, 2007


LightHusband's parents are here. It's COLD ... brrrr. We had snow yesterday. It's the first time I remember having snow in April in Virginia. They all went into DC to see the snow on the cherry blossoms. And to see all the people. It was crowded. I stayed home. I can't handle all those people in one place anymore.

When they came home, the LightChildren and I dyed Easter eggs. We all still love to do this. It was late. But we still had fun. We dyed and painted and stickered.

Four cracked when I boiled them.

We are now the proud owners of 20 colorful, beautiful eggs.

Mar 12, 2007

Light Dinner Conversation

Normal Monday nights include me, myself and I dining alone (or with BlazingEwe) while LightHusband has LightChildren and FlamingLambs at the rink for hockey practice and skating lessons. Today was slightly different due to LightBoy's odd case of chicken pox (for which he received a vaccination last May ... who knew?). So LightHusband, LightBoy and I had dinner together while BlazingEwe was at the rink with the girls. Here is a snippet of our conversation:

LightBoy: Dad, do you always start with the onions when you make spaghetti?

LightHusband: Yep. I do that to make them soft so my nine year old can't taste them.

LightBoy (looking at me in exasperation): Why did you marry him?

Me: So I could have you!

LightHusband (with a big cheesy grin): So I could make soft onions in your spaghetti!

LightBoy: He's impervious!

And we all fell out laughing ...

Mar 9, 2007

You've Come A Long Way, Baby!

Here is a photo montage comparing LightGirl's first hockey game to her most recent hockey game. Her first game she played in late September of 2006. The most recent game was played this past Sunday. It is interesting to note both games were played against the same team. But it's clearly a different player in each picture!! Same girl, different player.