Saturday, January 26, 2013

Rainy Days

It’s a rainy Saturday morning here in CA.
Earl has a men’s meeting this morning out front, so the kids and I are having a slow and cozy morning back in the back.
I love rainy days.
Maybe that’s because we don’t have many rainy days here in Southern CA. I remember when Earl and I were just getting to know each other. He lived in Louisiana and we would talk once a week on the phone. One evening he asked me how many days it rained here. What?! I have no idea! (In LA, it rains many days a year, compared to CA.) I answered him with a smart-aleck answer, “Twelve”, thinking he would surely know I was jesting. Well, it wasn’t until after we were married a few years and I heard him telling others that it only rains 12 days a year here in CA that I realized that he hadn’t gotten to know me well enough yet back then to realize I was kidding and I laughingly corrected him. We’ve laughed over that ever since!
When I was in Kindergarten, rainy days meant getting to walk to school with my red rain boots on and carry my umbrella. That was fun. I didn’t like the fact though that I couldn’t get my boots on or off by myself (I’m sure my poor teacher didn’t like that either). And I didn’t like the fact that rainy days meant I couldn’t walk home for lunch, but had to eat my lunch in the “stinky” auditorium with the lunch ladies who stood down front and checked your bag or box before you left to make sure you ate “everything”. (I finally figured out that if I stuffed my bruised and squishy banana in my thermos, after peeling it, that they wouldn’t find it. But my mom did. Rats.)
When I moved in the middle of 1st grade to a new school, I still loved walking to school in the rain (right around the corner!) AND it was the only time we could show Mrs. Quinn any loose teeth we had (she was one smart teacher).
Later on in elementary school, rainy days meant no recess and "Heads up 7-Up" in the classroom. It meant no PE and instead "indoor PE" in the forum with a big rubber ball.
Rainy days also meant getting to build forts in the living room with my sister with every available sheet and blanket and chair in the house. It also meant getting to play with the “special wooden play set” that Mom kept in her closet for rainy days. It also meant putting “The New Christy Minstrels” LP on the stereo and singing and dancing around on the oval-shaped braided rug.
When I grew up and moved out on my own, rainy days meant a good book and a warm drink. They meant sweats, fuzzy socks, an over-sized sweat shirt, and a cracked window so I could smell the rain and hear it hitting the patio, and feel the cool breeze. Sometimes, if the timing was right and I didn’t have homework to do or papers to grade or lesson plans to write, it meant a nice long extended time of studying the Word and memorizing Scriptures and writing in my journal.
When I was teaching school, it meant that homework for the day was simply to go home, fix a snack, grab a good book and find a cozy spot and read for 1 hour. My students and I ALWAYS loved rainy days!
When I became a mom, rainy days early on in our parenting meant special treats like hot chocolate (as the kids got old enough to appreciate it). When they were real little and we lived where we had a covered patio, it meant sitting outside in chairs and watching it and listening to it and smelling it . . . and talking about how wonderful it was and how everything was going to be so clean and fresh and how good of God to provide it. (Fortunately, I’ve never lived in a place where I’ve had to be concerned about flooding rivers, etc.)
I haven't been as good at thinking up new "rainy day traditions" for my kids. We spend a lot of time home as it is. We do a lot of reading normally (we're good at finding cozy spots with good books when we're not doing school or running errands!). And treats? Well, we're better at eating more of them more often than when they were younger and Earl and I limited the "sugar" more.
Yep. I enjoy rainy days. I enjoy being home on rainy days.
I love rainy days.
(What are some of your rainy day traditions? I'd LOVE some new ideas!)

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Anyone Want a Muffin?

 Anyone want muffins? 
Well, I've got them!

One of my favorite things, is to bake. I was delighted when my Mom asked me to bake muffins for our family. It didn't take long with the help of some gospel music.

First, I mixed all the dry ingredients . . .

then the wet . . . 

 then everything went together.

The batter was  scooped into the muffin cups.

Then I slipped them into the oven. :)


Want one? 
You can have blueberry or cranberry . . . :)


Friday, January 18, 2013

Cowgirl Up!



Meet Romeo. Molly’s newest friend.

He is a part Welsh & quarter horse pony.

Molly has been wanting to have “horse riding lessons” for quite awhile now. That is just not in our budget of money or time. But we have been visiting the equestrian center by our home and just soaking up as much “horse” as we can.

Well, this very desirous horse lover only asked for money for horse lessons this past Christmas and her aunts kindly helped out.

Molly had her first of four lessons yesterday.

First, she learned how to groom Romeo before taking him out.


Once Romeo was ready to go, it was time for Molly to “hop right on”.


I know. “Cowgirl up!” is a western phrase. Molly is actually learning from an English riding school. I’m still confused on the differences, except for, I think John Wayne probably rode western style and the Queen probably rides English style. Oh yeah, and the English-style riders don’t get to wear the cool cowboy hats and cowboy boots. Molly can really fill you in on the “real” differences and she’d be glad to, trust me. She has been very patient with me as I pepper her with questions!

Once in the arena, Molly learned to steer Romeo with the reins and with her legs while walking her. She learned the two-point position (for balance, when they jump), and she learned how to post while Romeo trotted (that’s that fancy little bounce the rider does which is much harder than it looks).


Before we knew it, it was time to head back to the barn.

We’re looking very much forward to lesson #2 next week!


Happy trails, my friends!

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Mmmm . . . it’s smelling so good!


Today, Emily had a friend over and they cooked a delicious dinner for us. I can’t remember the name, but I’m smelling garlic and onion . . . !

(David had a friend over too and they did boy stuff. Except when there was food to be tried.)

The girls had such a blast! And they even cooked with wine. Definitely something new for Em.

It was good for Ems, as she learned a lot of “skills” that I just don’t always take the time to teach her. But I’m sure she is exhausted about now. She is in there frying up the last of the chicken. (My stomach is growling!)

They also cooked up some kale . . . dipped in oil and sprinkled with salt. That too was delicious! (Yep, the boys helped “put it away”.)

Thanks to Molly for helping to take some photos with her camera, while mine is in the shop.



It looked like everyone had a really fun time!

I know they will be sad to see “Christmas break” come to an end on Monday.

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