Friday, January 18, 2013

The snow post

Oh, how I love snow days. Yesterday the rain, which had been berating us for nearly a week straight, finally did something nice and turned over to snow. Fast and heavy, it dumped on us for a few hours before calling it quits. While I made dinner the kids dashed in and out, changing out wet socks for dry ones, warming their hands over the heat vent for just a moment, deciding they were done for the evening then changing their minds and heading back out so as not to miss any of the fun, and fully surrendered to the joy of snowfall. When it got dark we called everyone in for good, had a warm dinner, then snuggled by the fire to watch a movie together. Perfection.

I love the fact that Knoxville shuts down for a few inches of snow. Nothing beats the cozy feeling of getting snowed in--we're all together, any prior obligations have been canceled, no one needs to wake up early for school, so let's just have fun and relax and be together.

In the morning, we put the still-wet coats and mittens in the dryer and layered ourselves up for more fun. It was good that we did, because by lunch time the winter wonderland was starting to melt.

It was nice while it lasted.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2012 Books

It's high time I retired the 2012 books from the sidebar, don't you think?

Okay, I promise I am not doing this on purpose...

2012 = 23 books

Weird. Last year I even commented that I would try to deliberately end with a different total for 2012. Must have forgotten, because there it is again: 23 books. I guess it is meant to be.

I love Gary Schmidt. His two books were my favorites of the year. Fantastic writing, perfect voice, compelling stories and great characters. I had fun reading the Uglies series with Emma; perfectly good quick fluff. We read When You Reach Me together too and I liked that one even more. Ben and I read The Westing Game together...which is one I read sometime in grade school and remember liking it then, and it totally held up for reading as an adult. I might like it even better now because I get a lot of jokes that were over my head then. Killing Lincoln was fascinating, so much I never knew about the Lincoln assassination, but told in a really readable way. The Poisonwood Bible was interesting too, it got a little long, but I forgave it because I learned so much and it made me think.

I noticed I got a lot of questions last year about which ones I didn't like, so here it goes: Joy for Beginners, The American Heiress, and The Maze Runner. There are others on the list that were just okay/kind of blah, but these three in particular were real stinkers. The kind of book you finish and feel've wasted your time and gotten dumber for having read them.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Emma = 13

Did you die a little inside when you read that title? I did. 
I kind of feel like I'm beating a dead horse when I talk about how great Emma is. You already know she's kind, more responsible than most adults, honest, ambitious, unselfish, athletic, thoughtful, artistic, funny, nurturing, did I mention responsible?, friendly, talented, has integrity coming out of her ears, is an outlandishly good big sister, even more talented, trustworthy ... and now she's a teenager.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Goodbye Christmas lights

I've been planning this shot for weeks, but our Christmas break was too busy and rainy to ever get it done. At last we had just enough dry days to get it taken and then take down the branches the next afternoon.