Wednesday, February 25, 2009

book club at the library last night

Guest moderator walks in late: "Wow, this is a big group, more than I expected."

Nervous laughter from the twelve of us group members. There were actually more people there than usual. I think it's because the book is kind of different and pretty popular.

No introduction. Who is this guy anyway? "So what do you guys usually do at these things?"

More nervous laughter from the group, followed by a really uncomfortable silence when we realized that he had asked a serious question.

Oldest woman in the room and long-time book club veteran: "Usually the moderator will give us a bio of the author, a little bit about their life and what other things they have done or books they have written."

All eyes turn back to the "moderator": "Well you guys pretty much know all about her life from reading this book anyway, right?"


Old woman: "Then she usually has a list of questions to facilitate the discussion and get it started."

"Well I don't have any of let's just turn it to you guys, what did you think of the book?"


Finally, after we all looked around at each other for what seems like hours, someone started talking and the discussion got rolling...albeit painfully slow. It did pick up after few more minutes and ended up being a pretty good discussion--no thanks to the "moderator" who ended up admitting that the reason he volunteered to moderate this particular discussion was because when he saw the movie, he was dating a Persian woman who was explaining things to him as they watched the movie together. After he said this, there was another sequence of nervous laughter followed by uncomfortable silence when we realized he was serious.  (To clarify and be fair, he had actually read the book also.)

I have really never been in a more awkward and socially painful group situation.

By the way, the book was Persepolis. It's really good (better than the movie, I've heard), you should read it.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


I heard on NPR last Tuesday that the widely-circulated fact that Einstein failed math is wrong. I was glad to hear that because I never really believed it anyway.

My first little son turns 6 today (my second little son will turn 2 tomorrow). Sometimes I worry about Seth because he seems totally addicted to media-based entertainment. He watched a lot of TV as a baby, from about 6 months on, because I went back to school and got a bachelor's degree (graduating while 8.5 months pregnant with Maryn) and I needed something to occupy his time so I could study. As I'm typing this, it kind of sounds like he was neglected. In my defense, he only watched good quality kids shows (with no commercials) or baby einstein videos. So I felt okay about it at the time. There was really nothing else I could do.

Anyway--so sometimes I think that because of this, he developed a sort of dependence on media for entertainment. He is constantly asking to watch a movie, play computer or play Wii...until one afternoon last week....

He's been working on adding in math in school, really only adding to 10. One night, Jon showed him how to add 2 and three digit numbers vertically in columns. Seth totally grasped on to this concept and started writing his own math problems to solve. Example: 213+215 or 1111+245. It was so cute how excited he was about it! Then, he started writing problems that required carrying numbers and got really confused. So later the same night, Jon showed him how to carry numbers. Since then, Seth has been creating and solving his own addition problems, complete with one or two carried numbers in each. The next couple of days after that, he came home from school and said,

"Mom, I want to do more math problems."

You can imagine my shock when he said this and not "Mom can I play Wii?" Last Sunday at church, he got a birthday gift in Primary--a little pen and matching notebook. He said,

"Oh good! Now I can do more math problems!"

Since his birthday party though (last Saturday), he has wanted to play with his new toys, so math has taken a back burner. Hopefully, not for long, I really wonder if he will always stay this excited about it?

birthday boys

More pics and party recaps to follow...

Thursday, February 12, 2009

wedding: Wendy

I had an absolutely totally fun time during my trip to Tucson. There was a party literally everyday for 4 days, intermixed with all the wedding preparations. The whole event turned out beautifully, the weather was perfect, the overall look of the decorations was totally cool--totally Wendy, and of course the real Mexican food was so, so good (you really can't find that in my neck of the midwest).

True to form, I didn't take many pictures during my trip. The following are a few of the highlights. The rest can be viewed here. I'm anxiously waiting for Wendy and Chad to get home from Mexico so I can see the actual wedding pics from the real photog. Until then, here's a few--

This is one of the only pictures I got of the happy couple. Not the best because they are feeding cake to each other, but you can see Wendy's beautiful dress (knee-length) and a little glimpse of one of the cakes behind them. Wendy was very hands-on, not just in the planning of this wedding, but in its execution as well. What bride makes her own wedding cakes? She did. And they were really yummy.

Near the end of the night: Mom, me, Rach and Wendy (where were you, Car?) Wendy had 5 bridesmaids. She let us pick our own dresses (either white or cream) and she made us each a necklace (as well as her own). So awesome.

Jonas and Papa.

To continue the partying fun, the next day we had a birthday party for Ellena. Jonas got some goods out of the party too. This is the costume I bought to try and keep him from wearing Maryn's princess dresses. (It isn't working all that great so far.) Carlie got him the cool hat and swords to complete the look.

And finally, Wendy played guitar and sang a song for Chad, I Feel it All-- the song from their engagement video. It sounded really great, she is so talented. As I was listening to it, I looked around and realized that no one was filming it! Aaah! So I ran across the yard, got my puny little camera and recorded the last half of the song.

To end, I've included their engagement video (which I shot). It's really cute and she was so surprised! Chad flew in from Seattle and met us in Tucson, she saw him when she looked through that telescope thing. Watch it.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

flip-flops in February (& wedding bells)

This may not seem like such an awesome occurance for those of you who live in AZ (or anywhere else warm), but I have felt so spoiled these past few days NOT having to wear socks, or a sweater or a coat or gloves. This is the February I'm used to, this is the February I love.

I'm here (with Jonas) for my sister's wedding. So excited! I miss my other kids and Jon of course, but I'm really having a great time here- enjoying the beautiful weather and hanging out with my family.

It's going to be really hard to go back to the midwest's ice, snow and freezing temps. Spring cannot come fast enough out there.