Well, we’ve still got a long ways to go before we have as many movies as books, but we’ve still managed to accumulate a nice collection.

I spent part of the morning organizing them, and the girls were just all over me–hovering. I can’t decide if the word I’m looking for is unnerving or annoying. They just wouldn’t go off and play while I had the movies out.

I have this picture of Tilly (the dog I grew up with) watching my dad and his hunting partner butcher and package a moose on our dining room table. She knew she had no rights or access to the meat on the table, but the whole time she sat, slightly forward, tightly coiled: if anything dropped it was not going to hit the floor.

That’s the best illustration I have for what happened today. The girls already had their little movie for the morning, and knew they wouldn’t get another one, but they continued to ask for and hold the movies (They asked names of people on the covers, stacked them in little pile like blocks, told me I couldn’t put stickers on them).

I was labeling the movies. We’ve “flubbed” quite a bit up till now, assuming a lack of awareness that is no longer applicable. So I wanted to go through and thoughtfully decide what ages I think a kid needs to be before they watch each of these things. Continue reading

I Made It.

(Posted simultaneously at Untangling Tales.)

Can’t say I’m done, ’cause I’m not, but I did make the 50,000-word “finish line.”

Two nights ago, actually. And yesterday I spent much of the day cleaning house because we were having company for dinner, so I didn’t write anything before “validating” my 50,267-Word document this morning. (You are such a nice little document!) It came in as 50,116 words.

Good enough for me. I did what I set out to do (make word count) and have had a “highly educational experience” that was not frightening or humiliating (I understand many highly educational experiences are one or both). I now have more words on a single story than I ever have before, and I spent more consecutive days on a single project (excluding marriage and children and eating) than I have before in my life.

Since it’s still not done I’ll have to spend some more hours on it before it’s complete, but I’ve got those penciled in for January or February.

The plan for December is to create order in my physical world (this was already manifesting itself toward the end of the month as my word-count slowed and my house got pretty) and enjoy Jay’s time off.

The whole month. *WooHoo!*

I’m hoping to have some time in there to create a semi-formal “pre-school” lesson plan for Natasha. She it just chomping at the bit right now. She has loved poetry since she was 2 1/2 and fell in love with that rabbit poem. We read them between chores this morning, and she was never ready to let me get back to my clothes-folding. Then she went off “playing school” and “reading” both by herself and with Melody.

Short hair

The girls cut their own hair Monday. So now they both have reallyreally short cuts.

This only leaves me with any length in the house– Jay got his hair cut on Saturday. Very short. Jay thinks we might try putting a group pix here on the blog until he gets the next album up. We’ll see if that happens… I do most of my blogging from my computer, and I’ve never tried downloading pix here.


I’m doing well on my novel. Over 41,000 words collected so far. If you want to see more about that though you’ll have to visit that category of Untangling Tales, since that’s where I’ve been doing any writing about it.

Snow Machine

Jay and the girls watched the Ski-doo promotional video 6 or 10 times last night.

It has all the adrenaline images of (forgive me, I don’t know the “official” terms) swishing around and jumps and stuff. There are a couple great over-the-mountain shots, coming up behind the dismounted drivers (by their machines) and swinging over whatever vast view they’ve driven up to.

I wasn’t with them while they were watching, but Jay told me that the girls were just in awe, and Natasha finally asked, “Can your snow machine do that?” When Jay responded in the affirmative, Natasha was properly impressed.

Today she was talking about it and informed me, quite seriously, that Daddy could jump off a mountain.

Jay got his Snow Machine today

He was so excited, and took the day off to get stuff ready, and is now on his way to drive it for the first time out by Derek’s place.

I’m thankful the temp’s closer to zero. It was -20 earlier this week, but only -2 last I checked. We had all four brothers here this afternoon, as Jay put the skis back on the machine. Natasha pulled on her boots so she could be out with them watching.

Both girls have enjoyed the stream of activity going through today. An hour after the youngest three brothers left this morning Rachel came by to eat her lunch with us, and we got to talk a bit. Then she returned to work and, again within the hour, Isaac returned, this time with Derek.

Natasha’s been really into this Eyewitness book about skeletons, so she pulled it out as soon as she saw her wider audience, and, while at first she was asking Uncle D to read with her (explain the pictures), she ended up doing most of the explaining.

It was more than a little gratifying to see how much she retained from our time reading together. I overheard her explaining shark teeth, and talking matter-of-factly about the big teeth on the lion skull.

“Those are for he tears out big chunks of ham.” Ham is currently her generic for meat.

Melody was enjoying pulling the earflaps down on Uncle Isaac’s hat. Kept her entertained for a good 5-10 minutes.

Potluck Sunday

At our church we have a potluck the first Sunday of each month.

Elisha will be six months old this week, and for the first time since before he was born I brought something substantial and homemade. (I was very proud of myself).

Natasha asked that morning (yesterday) what I was making food for.
“For the potluck,” I told her.
Mom,” she said (in the voice she uses when I tell her carrots are purple), “It’s potluck: the foods at the church today!”

So we talked about where the food comes from. Reminded me how long it’s been since I participated in the bringing.


After eating, a number of the men went out and started a pretty impressive fire to burn the brush that’s been cleared as part of the building project over the last however long. It had been announced in advance, and the kids were encouraged to go roast marshmallows and stuff.

I was inside talking with one of the other women when Jay brought Melody in. Her bare hands were *red* from the cold and they, along with her face and the front of her coat, were sticky with marshmallow guts. Continue reading