Picture this, please. Go ahead, close your eyes...
There I was, dripping wet hair and all, jumping, twirling and cheering like a five year-old. Yes, I was doing the happy dance, and a very happy little number I did perform.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Picture this, please. Go ahead, close your eyes...
Monday, June 22, 2009
Once upon a time, there was a pretty ball of vanilla yarn and a little furry puppy.
You see, this little puppy was the greatest, and like her mama, she adored snugly, cuddly thingies.
And, just like her mama, anything that appeared snugly and cuddly had an intoxicating effect on her. Her cuddle instinct would kick in and she would get very, very sleepy.
"Is this ever soft," she thought to herself, as she gently stroked the yarn with her paw.
"Humm...yes...I'll curl up here. I'll nap on this ultra-soft scarf my mama is making. I'll be careful. She won't mind."
And with that, the little puppy closed her tired brown eyes and drifted off to dreamland.
Note: She was right. Her mama didn't mind one bit. In fact, she actually thought it was pretty darn cute. Golly-gee, her mama sure does love her.
Friday, June 19, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Finally, after gallons of water, mucho love and affection, and warm, sunny skies, my little clematis bloomed. I know, it's not really anything major, but it truly excites me. I enjoy the little things.
Plus, since this year is my first attempt at anything of significance in the gardening realm, I'm trying to record all events. ....so, pardon me for being abnormally obsessed.... (sigh)
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Confession: Take a perfectly good afternoon (evening, morning, or combine them all), mix in a great mystery, stir in some Darjeeling leaves, and waa-laa it's a recipe for pure bliss.
Lately, I've found myself totally engrossed in books on the topic of tea. I wonder why? Could it be my ridiculous obsession with Teavana? Or, is it my ongoing love affair with literature? Perhaps a combination? humm...I'll ponder that...
If, as a child, you adored Miss Nancy Drew and her sidekick, Bess, half as much as I did, than I'm quite certain you'll find sincere enjoyment in The Tea Shop Mysteries, a series of books by Laura Childs.
So far, I've been unable to stop myself. I imagine my new infatuation is akin to the 'high' drug addicts experience after taking that first hit of a potent substance.
I've already made best friends with the characters and secretly want to be Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop in Charleston, South Carolina. Her southern hospitality and graceful charm combined with intelligence and self-confidence fuse together to place her high on my list of people to be reincarnated as.
Although the books are easy to read and offer no significant insight into character analysis or theme, they are indeed entertaining.
On the other hand, as much as I enjoy an easy beach-chair read, I also believe it's important to read pieces that will help me learn and grow as a person. Have you read Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson? Please do. It will change your life.
Of course, it's no big secret that I'm extremely passionate about the topic of education. I believe all children can learn and ....ok... this is not going to turn into my plan to fix our crumbling educational system here in America.
As I was reading the book I was speechless... I'll leave you with some passages that truly touched my heart.
"After their familiar breakfast of chapattis and cha, Haji Ali led Mortenson up a steep path to a vast open ledge eight hundred feet above the Braldu. The view was exquisite, with the ice giants of the upper Baltoro razored into the blue far above Korphe's gray rock walls. But Mortenson wasn't admiring the scenery. He was appalled to see eighty-two children, seventy-eight boys, and the four girls who had the pluck to join them, kneeling on the frosty ground, in the open. Haji Ali, avoiding Mortenson's eyes, said the village had no school, and the Pakistani government didn't provide a teacher. A teacher cost the equivalent of one dollar a day, he explained, which was more than the village could afford. So they shared a teacher with the neighboring village of Munjung, and he taught in Korphe three days a week. The rest of the time, the children were left alone to practice the lessons he left behind."
"And it was obvious that most of the money that reached this altitude was earmarked for the army, to finance its costly standoff with Indian forces along the Siachen Glacier. But a dollar a day for a teacher, Mortenson fumed, how could a government, even one as impoverished as Pakistan's, not provide that?"
"After the last note of the anthem had faded, the children sat in a neat circle and began copying their multiplication tables. Most scratched in the dirt with sticks they'd brought along for that purpose."
"Can you imagine a fourth-grade class in America, alone, without a teacher, sitting there quietly and working on their lessons? I felt like my heart was being torn out. There was a fierceness in their desire to learn, despite how mightily everything was stacked against them, that reminded me of Christa. I knew I had to do something."
May I suggest you make yourself a little cup of tea and visit this place. I promise it will get your gears turning.
Before I go, take a peek at this conversation between Sir Edmund Hillary and Urkien Sherpa.
"Tell us, if there were one thing we could do for your village, what would it be?"
"With all respect, Sahib, you have little to teach us in strength and toughness. And we don't envy your restless spirits. Perhaps we are happier than you? But we would like our children to go to school. Of all the things you have, learning is the one we desire most for our children."
Off in the distance the sound of rumbling thunder rolls through the sky. Here, a scaredy puppy hides under a bed. But, we are peaceful, enjoying our own little paradise, even if our paradise consists of an herb garden, some new plants and a yummo-licious little snack.
Moments ago, the first droplets appeared, jumping and hopping like little grasshoppers upon the parched, dusty ground. Ahh yes, a summer storm. The timing is perfect, as yesterday these little lettuce babies received their new home.
Lately, the yard around 403 has been buzzing with activity. Yes, the bees (who were swarming our home by the thousands) are gone, but have swiftly been replaced by summer chores, cleaning, planting and harvesting.
I'm delighted that flip-flop wearing finally commenced and the the pressures of lesson planning and grading have gently subsided. The sweet, long days of summer have finally graced me with their presence, and I'm responding by taking full advantage of time to create, read, garden and learn.
If you've been following my story, you are aware that I'm growing quite fond of my herbs. Actually, I'm rather infatuated. And, it appears as though the dear little things love me back. The basil has been so kind as to provide me with the necessary ingredient for my new favorite summer snack. You've really got to try these.
Simply cut a fresh tomato into slices and drizzle with a bit of light balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
Then, top with a sprinkle of mozzarella and romano cheese.
Finish by adding some fresh basil and a sprig of parsley.