Another blistering day

My next door neighbors promise me this is the hottest summer they’ve ever seen. Today is expected to reach triple digits with high humidity. The heat index could be as high as 121 degrees for a few hours in the afternoon. Fortunately, things are supposed to “cool down” on Sunday and for next week with highs “only” in the low 90’s.

Average temperatures for July and August are 89 degrees, so this truly is a hot summer that just won’t stop. I am definitely looking forward to autumn.

And I really can’t complain. Bill suggested taking a blow dryer outside and turning it full blast in my face to simulate Kuwait. No, thanks.

Road trip

Heading down to Florida for a few days where it is actually slightly cooler than my part of Georgia. It’s nice that going to my parents’ house isn’t quite the production it usually is. I have a gung-ho attitude that has me convinced the drive is “short,” and, while 7+ hours is much shorter than 15, there is a tiny nagging voice telling me that 7 hours in a car with a 2 year old who doesn’t like the car could easily feel like 15. I am trying to ignore that voice, prefering optimism to realism. If I weren’t optimistic I would not even attempt the drive.

Note for future reference

Do not attempt an Italian meringue buttercream frosting (with rum) when the temps are in the upper 90’s and the humidity is palpable.

Also note that putting soupy Italian meringue buttercream frosting (with rum) in the refrigerator will thicken it up, but not in time for the party that begins a half hour after you discover that Italian meringue buttercream frosting (with rum) won’t take in your sauna- esque kitchen.

Also note that Italian meringue buttercream frosting (with rum) tastes quite good soupy, slightly thick, and been-in-the-fridge-since-yesterday thick. Failure to have useable icing for my party yesterday just means more for me.


Coincidentally, I’m reading Haystack Full of Needles. I say “coincidentally” because this book was not on my summer reading list, but it just came my way. I also say “coincidentally” because Fritz happens to be reading Henry V for his upcoming school year which I happen to be planning right now. And Alice Gunther just happens to have a whole chapter on doing Shakespearean plays with other homeschoolers. And I just happened to have read that this morning.

And a big part of me is saying, “Oh, I could do that. I could produce Henry V with our home school group.”

And a big part of me is saying, “No, you do not have time or energy for that.”

And the first part says, “Theater is fun! have fun with your school year!”

And the second part retorts, “Fritz does not like getting up in front of people and performing. This would not be fun.”

And the crazy side of me says, “He’ll be fine. He needs to explore new growth opportunities.”

And the debate rages on. I think it’s time to return the book.

Yesterday, in photos

Fritz said, “Mom, look! My hair is half brown and half blond!” I told him people actually pay good money for highlights like his. No chemicals here: that’s sun bleaching. I wonder what it will look like when he gets it cut.

This is a jig-saw puzzle that Fritz completed with a little help from his sisters and me. He took the picture. Notice the conquering hero’s planted foot…on the kitchen table.

Peter said he was too tired to clean up his toys. And then he proved his point by passing out on the kitchen floor.
Jenny got an early Christmas present: her two front teeth.

Flowers and diamonds

The rose bush in the front of the house first bloomed back in May or early June. When the blooms began to fade, I thought that was it. But my husband went out and cut off all the dead heads and a few weeks later, we had more blooms. Since then, he has been fairly regular in trimming away the dead flowers and as a result, we have a fairly continuous bounty of pretty flowers greeting us as we come and go.

Some gals get roses via FTD delivered to their front door for a special occasion. I get them every day.

Yesterday, as I was saying goodbye to my husband before work, I noticed the dew on the rose bush. The petals and leaves appeared to be covered in diamonds. Gorgeous.

Pancakes for Bedtime

Last night I “read” Pancakes for Breakfast by Tomie De Paola to Mary before bed. I prefaced the story by telling Mary that this book had been Jenny’s favorite when she was little. “Do you remember that?” I asked my almost seven year old. It was 3 or 4 years ago, but she remembered.

As Mary and I went through the story of the poor woman who has to work so hard for her pancake breakfast, Jenny listened from her bed and contributed words and commentary. Jenny and I had looked at this book so many times when she was a toddler, and I would say the same things each time. Her words quoted me from all those long past readings.

When we were done, Mary said, “Again,” but I said no. I did say, though, that she could look through the pictures herself while she snuggled in my lap and we rocked in the chair in the dimly lit room. “But I can’t read,” sighed my little dramatist with flair learned from her older sisters.

“You don’t need to read it, honey,” I said. “There aren’t any words anyway.”

“No words?” asked Jenny.


“You mean it’s a picture book?”

“Yes, honey,” I said as gently as possible. These little growing-up moments are so precious to me.

One day, perhaps, Jenny will have a little girl of her own, and I will be sure she has a copy of this book. And I bet it will still be my words that she “reads” to her daughter.

Sickbed ramblings

I’ve been sick all week. Of course, my husband has been gone all week. I was so bad that at some point I made lemonade using a canister of mix, but I accidentally used twice the amount. And I drank that, all week, with only a vague idea that it was really really sweet.

The boys came home on Thursday. Fritz came home coughing. I didn’t give it to him. Early this morning I relocated my exhausted body to the couch for some more rest. The elevated position helps a bit with my congestion. A few hours later, Fritz woke me up and told me his fever was really high. How high? “A hundred and six,” he said. That got me wide awake fast. Of course, it wasn’t 106, it was 100.6. Big difference.

We were supposed to go camping this weekend. The healthy ones are disappointed. I’d be disappointed too if my head didn’t throb.

Friday morning, first thing, my computer broke. Same exact problem as last November. At least this time they were honest and said it would take 3 weeks to send me a new computer. I didn’t call them. The kids had swim lessons in the morning, so I had no time, and later, I knew I would not be…polite. I waited until Bill returned from Oklahoma, and let him call them. At least this time I can use Bill’s laptop for all my school planning and to pay bills online. And to blog.

Or maybe I’ll just get some other stuff done around the house.

Right after my breathing doesn’t involve achy coughing.

Around these parts, school starts at the beginning of August. I like to follow, roughly, the local school calendar, which means we only have two more weeks of summer vacation. I could take more, but I’m trying a new plan this year where I am scheduling one very light school week every 4 or 5 weeks. That’s the week where I hope to neatly fit things like dentist appointments or field trips or post-summer vacations at the beach.