Tuesday, March 28, 2006

March 29, 2006: Just One Reason We Love Homeschooling…

bald river falls

Because of days like today, when we can scrap everything—math, grammar, history, spelling, phonics, violin, and even orchestra—and take a hike. Soak in a big dose of river and mountain, of hemlock and rhododendron. Get our sneakers wet in the river and pocket a couple of rocks. Books and such can wait for tomorrow. Today was a day to celebrate creation, to revel in the coloring of the woods.

Our journey today took us to Bald River Falls in the Cherokee National Forest, not far from Tellico Plains. Hardly a soul in sight except for a few fishermen. A great day to take a deep breath.

duncan-bald riverfamily-bald river3 kids-bald river

Sunday, March 26, 2006

March 27, 2006: Thirteen

Thirteen years ago I was 2.5 hours away from delivering my first born. This is right about the time I started pushing--and yes, I pushed for 2.5 hours.

Yesterday in Sunday School, someone (a man) made the comment that "women can have more children because they forget how horrible giving birth is." All the women jumped all over him because NO!! We do not forget the pain. But more powerful than the pain is the tremendous, all powerful, breathtaking love we have for our babies.

Breathtaking. My son has always taken my breath away. For thirteen years and eight months I have loved him, memorized him, enjoyed him. Sometimes I have wanted to shake the stuffings out of him, but I have loved him every single second of every single day. I love watching him grow. He is such a fun person. Funny. Smart. Handsome. Kind-hearted. Even his firstborn selfishness is disappearing as he matures.

If I had known, at 13, what my future held, I would have been the happiest teenager in the world.

March 26, 2006: Jesse's Baptism

What an amazing day. I can't believe I made it through without a box of tissues. Watching my husband baptize our son was an amazing experience. Jesse looked so perfectly at peace, so confident and poised. Graceful. And there the two of them were, in the baptistry:

“For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit… And this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also – not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 3:18, 21

Jesse Small – because you believe and have confessed that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the living God, I now baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.


March 26, 2006: 17 Snippets for 17 Years

17 Snippets for 17 Years
For Randy, with love and squalor on our 17th anniversary.

You are my lighthouse. Ceaselessly
your rotations beam over the sea
and land. Birds are guided by them
and so are travelers lost in the
moors. You are my compass and light.
~James Laughlin

All that I wanted then
is forgotten now, but you.
~Gary Snyder

My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep;
The more I give to thee
The more I have,
For both are infinite.
~ William Shakespeare

You and I,
We were captured. We took our souls
And we flew away.
We were right; we were giving.
That’s how we kept what we gave away.
~Neil Young

No easy thing to bear, the weight of sweetness.
Song, wisdom, sadness, joy: sweetness
Equals three of any of these gravities.
~Li-Young Lee

here’s to opening and upward,to leaf and to sap
and to you (in my arms flowering so new)
self whose eyes smell of the sound of rain
~e.e. cummings

What did you come here for today?
Did you have something you wanted to say?
Or did you just come to get a piece of paper,
And say “I do”?
Or did you come to tell everyone that
Love is forever, and ever, and ever
And a day.
~Gene Cotton

What makes your love
Choose me? Once I asked you
But you wouldn’t answer.
It was your secret. Keep it so.
~James Laughlin

To get the full value of joy
You must have someone to divide it with.
~ Mark Twain

I love you like the stars above,
I’ll love you ‘til I die.
~Dire Straits

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself
But if your love and must needs have desires,
Let these be your desires:
• To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
• To know the pain of too much tenderness.
• To be wounded by your own understanding of love and to bleed willingly and joyfully.
• To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
• To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
• To return home at eventide with gratitude and then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.
~ Kahlil Gibran

And when we die, we say we’ll catch some blackbird’s wing,
And we will fly way together,
Come some sweet blue bonnet spring.
~Nanci Griffith

and now you are and I am and we’re
a mystery which will never happened again,
a miracle which has never happened before.
~e.e. cummings

Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not easily broken.
~Ecclesiastes 4:12

My lover is radiant and ruddy,
Outstanding among ten thousand.
~Song of Songs 5:10

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace…
I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears of all my life! - and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.
~Elizabeth Barrett Browning

You were born together, and together you shall be
You shall be together when the white wings
Of death scatter your days.
You shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness,
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
~Kahlil Gibran

Monday, March 20, 2006

March 20, 2006: Proud of My Son

I'm so proud of my son. He's such a good sport--such a laid-back guy. We found out in February that he was one of the top 100 scorers in the National Word Power Challenge for the state of Tennessee, and he got to go to Nashville to compete today. He just had such a great time. He didn't seem to care a bit that he didn't make it to the Top 10. The experience of just going and competing was enough for him. He came home all smiling and content. It was a huge added bonus that he and his Dad got to take a 3 1/2 hour road trip there and back, stay in a hotel with a heated pool, and eat at Waffle House! What a great kid. I'm glad he's mine. (And I'm thankful that they are home on this rainy night!)