Monday, September 24, 2012

Rosh Hashana in pics

But first..a few words. I am sitting here on my back deck...dressed like a crazy person in my pajama bottoms, tie-dye shirt, leather jacket and fuzzy socks. I am armed with a cup of coffee and my netbook...and I am thinking what?

 I realize my posts have taken a different tone. There was a time when this blog was about the daily craziness of homeschooling and working. Then...more introspection as I finish my final year of a parish ministry training program and I return home for a year or two. But as my children grew..and I returned to work..and the impact of my time volunteering at a local prison became deeper..and I sort through my own mid-life posts have become sillier..or just less intense/thought-provoking.

There are reasons for this. As they become young adults, my children are not so thrilled with their private lives being on display. I can truly appreciate that. My work involves a lot of confidentiality. Volunteering..same thing

 As for my own-mid-life stuff? Wow. Does anyone really want to read about my journey through understanding the ?'s in my identity. The journey into a stronger understanding of what my own personal boundaries and value sets are? Probably not. It's not that exciting, really.

So..instead? You get the occasional (think very occasional) thought worth reading (I hope)..and lots of this is what we're up to...and with that said.

Rosh Hashana.

Almost every year, my aunt hosts dinner for Rosh Hashana at her house. Actually? She more than hosts..she pretty much prepares the whole meal. Same for Passover and Hanukkah. The rest of us? We pretty much just show up. What can I say? It works well for me? ( sad is that!)

Anyway, Rosh Hashana is the Jewish New Year. Among other things it is a time for new beginnings. A time for mercy and forgiveness. A time of reflection and celebration. It is a time to come together with family and recognize the blessings we have.

This particular year, Rosh Hashana happens to fall on the Sunday I am preaching out at the prison. (Still preaching the third Sunday of every month at this unit). I get the privilege of briefly discussing Rosh Hashana with my brothers in white...then..the rest of the afternoon is spent with the English about some amazing musicians!

 My friend Jack (who happened to be my ride that day) and I cut out of prison a little early so I can make it back in time for dinner with the family!

Once again, my aunt served an amazing meal..which we all thoroughly enjoyed.

Here are a handful of pics from this time, together with family and friends.

 My parents..enjoying pre-dinner wine, served with cucumber with salmon, pita chips and hummus. My mom and I? I think we filled up on pre-dinner snacks.

Yup..that's me..heaping too much food on my plate...and that is AFTER stuffing myself with appetizers. What can I say? I was shameless!  Cody reads the "menu" my aunt so graciously posted on her cupboard to determine what the vegetarian options are. My mom and Big B? Also fixing their plates.

 Just visiting over dinner...and finally?

My favorite pic....Grandma with the boys! (minus Brian-Scott) Here is grandma surrounded by Cody holding Levi, Calvin (behind her) and Austen.

Signing off for now. It appears the reality of my life today...being a date with Levi to play "trucks" and loads of laundry..are awaiting.

Monday, September 10, 2012

A quick catch-up.

Wow. Where to start. Every week I think...ooh..this would be great fun to blog about..and then another fun blog...and another insight. And then it is too much and I become instead? I just. don't. blog.

So that said. This will pretty much be a blog in pics.

Starting with Cody!!!!  Cody is home.

Here is Cody on the eve of his return. Cody's girlfriend,  Elle, also hung out with us for a few days. We were thrilled to have them home. As you can tell by the look on his face. The feeling is absolutely mutual.

What can I say? I am occasionally the queen of denial.

Truth be told, Cody is busy..going to classes, working and all that important stuff. So we don't really see him much. But it's great to have him home, none-the-less.

Cody, however, is not the only that has come home. Brian and Angee came to visit a few weeks ago. Here is a pic of Big B in complete in the midst of wedding planning and voicing concerns about Austen's math (or lack there-of)..our young adults became immersed in a game of...

pokemon (she says in a whisper)

Yes folks..I said. Pokemon. Here they are intensely focused on creating the perfect deck.

Meanwhile..Austen? know the one of great concern? He is napping..then guitar playing..and working. Just for the record..this  Austen kid has been busy working (new/old job at Flying L now that girl-scout camp is over), and volunteering (grilled over 70 hamburgers for the Club),working math problems and filling out scholarship applications, reading books, and playing air-soft. He is strongly contemplating a culinary institute in Arizona (as opposed to c.c. locally) he is trying to figure out how to fund this.

Finally we come to Levi. Levi has been busy..hiding in desk cabinets, and kitchen cabinets ..and fireplaces.

When he is not hiding in strange places..Levi has become Big B's alltime helper. He loves to help him "fix" cars, "fix" boats..and help him in the kitchen.

Here Big B makes pizza crusts.

We had a make-your-own pizza night for community dining. Big B was in his element.Yummy stuff.

While the rest of us have learned to stay out of Big B's way when he cooks..Levi? Levi just knows that no pizza dough would be complete without his help.!

So that's it. Work has been crazy for me. We have just signed contracts with one of the bigger school districts in San Antonio to service 120 kids..and are working on a deal with another district to teach a class on their campus. We will return to servicing the kids at one of the local homeless shelters in a week or two..and then, of course, are the regular Club kids. So yeah..a bit on the crazy side. But it's all good.

Striving to find a healthy balance between work, family time and personal time.

 For today? I get to enjoy the simple pleasures of sipping hot tea on my deck in the morning, helping Austen with some scholarship essay stuff, reading books with Levi (I have been reading while starting and stopping this post today), and getting ready for lunch with Big B. Hoping to work on some water-color placemats for Via de Cristo this afternoon.(Gotta tell you..coloring in stripes with watercolors is insanely therapeutic) Looking forward to community dining and guitar practice tonight.

Insane work overload can wait until tomorrow.