Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Now THAT Was Punny!

I couldn't resist posting these.  Enjoy!
(Thanks Mom and Rog)


1. The fattest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir
Cumference. He acquired his size from too much pi.

2. I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it
turned out to be an optical Aleutian .

3. She was only a whiskey maker, but he loved her still.

4. A rubber band pistol was confiscated from algebra class,
because it was a weapon of math disruption.

5. No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be

6. A dog gave birth to puppies near the road and was cited
for littering.

7. A grenade thrown into a kitchen in France would result in
Linoleum Blownapart.

8. A hole has been found in the nudist camp wall.. The police
are looking into it.

9. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

10. Two hats were hanging on a hat rack in the hallway. One
hat said to the other: 'You stay here; I'll go on a head.'

11. A sign on the lawn at a drug rehab center said: 'Keep off
the Grass.'

12. The soldier who survived mustard gas and pepper spray is
now a seasoned veteran.

13. A backward poet writes inverse.

14. In a democracy it's your vote that counts. In feudalism
it's your count that votes.

15. When cannibals ate a missionary, they got a taste of

16. If you jumped off the bridge in Paris , you'd be in Seine.

17. A vulture boards an airplane, carrying two dead raccoons.
The stewardess looks at him and says, 'I'm sorry, sir, only
one carrion allowed per passenger.'

18. Two fish swim into a concrete wall. One turns to the
other and says 'Dam!'

19. Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly, so they lit a
fire in the craft. Unsurprisingly it sank, proving once again
that you can't have your kayak and heat it too.

20. Two hydrogen atoms meet. One says, 'I've lost my
electron.' The other says 'Are you sure?' The first replies,
'Yes, I'm positive.'

21. Did you hear about the Buddhist who refused Novocain
during a root canal? His goal: transcend dental medication.

22. There was the person who sent ten puns to friends, with
the hope that at least one of the puns would make them laugh.
No pun in ten did.

Counting it all joy,

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Autumn-ish Tutorials That You Don't Want to Miss - Just Trust Me

I am finally getting caught up on my blog reading that I have neglected for months now. 

I know, I know . . .

And I just had to share a couple of ideas with you that just cannot stay in my bookmarks without proper recognition. I love 'em, love 'em, love 'em!

Ready? Set? Go!

We at the Jubilant household do not put much emphasis on Halloween. But we love all things Autumn and harvest-y. These fabric pumpkins from Sunshine In My Soul are so pretty. I love the shabby chic style of them. And they seem pretty easy to make. Here you can find the tutorial.

Not quite ready to make the switch to reusable bags or end up with plastic bags somehow anyway? Here is a tip for making all those icky plastic bags take up less space in your kitchen. Love this idea.  Here is the easy, peasy tutorial.  And a couple of pics to peak your interest:

I haven't tried this yet, but I plan to! It's a make your own microwave popcorn tutorial! It's quick and easy and a project you can get your kids into to help with. Besides, you never really know what all goes into the store bought stuff. This way, you know exactly what you are putting into your body, 'cuz you make it yourself! Brilliant!

I can just see dressing up these bags with a ribbon or two (depending on the holiday) and putting them into a cute movie night basket with a bunch of theater candy and a blockbuster gift card to give as a gift.  You can find the tutorial here.  I am telling you, there is nothing that can be easier.  Thank you Maize in Montana!


And there is this:  The mother of all cookies - Homemade Samoa Cookies.  I am so making these for Christmas.  If I can wait that long.   Okay, okay, we both know that I can't wait that long.  Tomorrow sounds good, doesn't it?   You can find the recipe here.  After you stop drooling, that is.


And then, last but not least are leg warmers to warm your legs, duh heart because they are so doggone cute.  And because they remind me of sixth grade where I had one pair of brown/white/tan striped leg warmers and wore them everyday.  The Affectionate One would beg me to make her three or sixteen pair if she ever sees this photo before I actually get around to making them for her.  Love 'em!  Here's the tutorial!

Whew!  I was only gonna link to three of these tutorials, but I couldn't decide which two among the five that I should leave out.  Hence all five tutorials.  Youaresoverywelcome. Amen.

Counting all (these tutorials) as joy,

Saturday, September 25, 2010

I Will Rise

The Calm One and I have had a pretty rough year. There have been lots of obstacles, lots of wondering what in the world could possibly go wrong next. For some, our lives this past year would be considered a cake-walk. For us it is shocking and has us quite weary.

We keep hoping that next year will be better.  That God couldn't possibly allow us to have two bad years in a row.  I know that things could be worse.  So much worse.  But I am still hoping for a very long reprieve from the attacks of the enemy. There is still so much that is uncertain for us during this time but we do know this:

There's a peace I've come to know though my heart and flesh may fail.  There's an anchor for my soul  I can say, "it is well."
Jesus has overcome and the grave is overwhelmed.  The victory is won He is risen from the dead.  And I will rise when He calls my name.  No more sorrow, no more pain.
I will rise on eagles' wings; before my God, fall on my knees and rise
I will rise!

When questions seem to have no answers.  When our bodies give out on us.  When friends abandon and family doesn't even try to understand.  No matter what, our Hope rises above, allowing us to rise above our circumstances and look to Him, leaning on Him when our strength fails. 

Thank you Lord for your faithfulness.  For your love.  For your provision.  For your sacrifice.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Very Private Grave by Donna Fletcher Crow - A Review by jubilee

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your peek into the book!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Monarch Books (August 1, 2010)
***Special thanks to Donna Fletcher Crow for sending me a review copy.***


Donna Fletcher Crow is the award-winning author of more than 30 books, primarily novels dealing with British history.

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Monarch Books (August 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1854249681
ISBN-13: 978-1854249685


Felicity flung her history book against the wall. She wasn’t studying for the priesthood to learn about ancient saints. She wanted to bring justice to this screwed-up world. Children were starving in Africa, war was ravaging the Middle East, women everywhere were treated as inferiors. Even here in England—

She stopped her internal rant when she realized the crash of her book had obscured the knock at her door. Reluctantly she picked up the book, noting with satisfaction the smudge it had left on the wall, and went into the hall. Her groan wasn’t entirely internal when she made out the black cassock and grey scapular of her caller through the glass panel of the door. She couldn’t have been in less of a mood to see one of the long-faced monks who ran the College of the Transfiguration which she had chosen to attend in a moment of temporary insanity. She jerked the door open with a bang.

“Father Dominic!” Felicity was immediately sorry for her surly mood. Fr. Dominic was an entirely different matter. She was always happy to see him. “I didn’t realize you were back from your pilgrimage.” She held the door wide for him as he limped down the hall to her living room.

“Just returned, my dear. Just returned.” As he spoke he smiled with a twinkle in his eyes that belied his 85 years, but he couldn’t quite suppress a small sigh as he lowered himself stiffly onto her sofa.

“I’ll put the kettle on.” Felicity turned toward her small kitchen. “I’m so sorry I don’t have any scones.”

“No, no. Just tea today— black.”

She looked at him, puzzled for a moment, then remembered. Oh, yes— today was Ash Wednesday. Solemn fast and all that. Felicity mentally rolled her eyes as she filled the kettle with water and clicked it on.

A few minutes later she filled his cup with a steaming, amber stream of his favorite Yorkshire Gold tea. The Community had a year or two ago started serving a cheaper blend of tea and donating the money saved thereby to the African Children’s Fund Fr. Dominic chaired— a worthy cause, but the tea was dreadful.

He raised his cup, “Oh, who could ask for more? The nectar of the gods.” Still, she knew he was missing her scones for which he sometimes provided little jars of quince jam from the community kitchen. And at Christmas he had brought her favorite— slices of dark, rich fruit cake encased in marzipan an inch thick.

And yet today she wondered if he noticed what he was or wasn’t eating at all, he was so animated with his plans for the major funding drive the Children’s Fund was set to launch. “If one puts together abortion, infant mortality, AIDS and traumatic deaths, South Africa’s daily death toll is appalling. Thousands die in a matter of months. If this were a war, such troop causalities would not be acceptable. The entire future of that nation— the whole continent, really— is at stake. They simply cannot afford to lose so many of their people— especially the children who are the future. If you don’t maintain health and keep order, instability, violence and poverty tear a country apart.”

Felicity nodded vigorously. Yes, this was more like it. This was what she wanted to hear about, not some useless church history nonsense. Fr. Dominic had spent his life working in South Africa, and today his passion made every word strike her heart. “And it isn’t just South Africa, the rest of the continent looks to them— to us— for stability. If South Africa fails, millions of Africans will curse us— we who stand by and let it happen.”

Still, there was hope, Dominic had talked to key people while on pilgrimage and had secured a source for a vast amount for the fund, although he didn't say what that source was. “This will be enough to build a first rate hospital for AIDS babies in Africa and fund a research wing for prevention and cure. There are good leaders in the government. There are people working for justice. If we can just give the people hope to hold on— "

His eyes took on a dreamy look and a little smile played around his mouth. "Hope. That’s what it’s always been about. Through the centuries . . . At last, the treasure to be put to a truly worthy use. . ." He ducked his head and took a quick sip of tea. “Forgive me, I’ve said too much.” He became suddenly thoughtful and lapsed into a most uncharacteristic silence. All Felicity’s best efforts couldn’t coax any more stories from him. Perhaps it was just the solemnity of the day, but Felicity did miss his stories— even the ones she had heard multiple times.

He drained his cup and set it down. “Ah, thank you my dear. Always a pleasure to be in your bright company. But now I must be getting back up the hill. Father Superior has asked me to do the ashing at mass, so I must prepare.” He struggled to his feet, his broad-shouldered, once-muscular frame revealing gauntness under the weight of his black woolen cassock, as did the folds of flesh that hung beneath his square jaw.

“Oh, I almost forgot,” he patted the canvas scrip which hung at his side from a strap slung across his chest. “I thought this might interest you.” He held out a small parcel wrapped in brown paper and tied up with old-fashioned string. His hand shook ever so slightly as Felicity took it from him. The gesture was so endearing: his shyness charming; his eagerness humbling. If the circumstances had been vastly different he could have been a suitor offering jewels to his beloved, or perhaps in an earlier age a troubadour bestowing an ode to his lady. And oddly enough, Felicity had the distinct impression that he hadn’t at all forgotten, but rather that delivering this small package had been the sole object of his visit. One might almost say his mission.

Felicity couldn’t help herself. She stepped forward and kissed him on his cheek. “Thank you, Father.”

Unexpectedly he placed his hands on each side of her forehead. “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you always.” She felt a warmth from his hands that infused her whole head and radiated toward her body as if she were being bathed in warm oil. She almost fancied a faint scent of spice as he made the sign of the cross over her.

Moving inside a bubble of hushed awe, she held the door for him and he walked out slowly, as if reluctant to leave, stepping carefully to avoid limping. “I’ll see you at mass, Father.”

She shut the door behind him and turned to the window to watch his slow progress down the uneven sidewalk, his grey scapular blowing in the wind. Somehow she wanted to call out to him, to cling to the moment, but already it was passing, the normality of the day moving in on a holy moment. Yet even as she turned away from the window, the warmth of his touch remained on her head. She turned back one last time, her hand held out to him, but no one was there. Only a fleeting shadow brushed the corner of her eye. She shivered, but when she blinked the sky was clear.

"Right. Back to the real world." Felicity spoke aloud to make herself focus. She looked longingly at the small brown package in her hand. It felt like a book. A very slim volume. Had Father D. found a publisher for his poetry? Her fingers plucked at the string. No. If this was a collection of her friend’s poetry perusing it must not be rushed. Reading it would be her treat when she finished the work she had set for herself for the day. Lectures had been cancelled to mark the solemnity, but essays would still be due when they were due. With a sigh she slipped the gift into one of the copious patch pockets of her skirt and returned to the tome on the Anglo-Saxon church Fr. Antony had assigned, forcing herself to concentrate on its obscure irrelevancies.

That had been the hardest thing she had found about adjusting to her first year at theological college— the constant pressure for work, the lack of time to pursue her own interests— and that in a monastery, even. You really would think, living with a bunch of monks and future priests you'd have all the time in the world. Felicity shook her head.

And besides that, there was no margin for error on her part. As one of only four women among the student body of forty-some— and the only American— Felicity felt a double burden to reach the highest standards possible. This was the first year the Anglo-Catholic College of the Transfiguration had accepted women as ordinands, although they were still housed off campus awaiting alterations to the dormitories. Before "the Great Change" a few women enrolled as students, but were not allowed equal status with the male ordinands. Last year, however, the college had submitted to the winds of change and the powers that be, so now the women had full status— and double pressure.

Felicity, however was never one to let such barriers discourage her. She could rise to any challenge and her determination to succeed in this male-dominated world knew no limits. Anyway, she had few complaints. She had been warmly welcomed— by most. A handful of ordinands and perhaps two or three of the monks or lay teachers were less warm— whether because she was female or because she was American she wasn’t sure.

Two hours later the insistent ringing of the community bell called her back from her reading just in time to fling a long black cassock on over her shetland sweater and dash across the street and up the hill to the Community grounds. Her long legs carried her the distance in under three minutes— she had timed it once. Once inside the high stone wall enclosing the Community she slowed her pace. It never failed. No matter how irritated she became with all the ancient ritual and nonsense of the place, there was something about the storybook quality of it all that got through to her in her quieter moments.

The spicy scent of incense met her at the door of the church. She dipped her finger in the bowl of holy water and turned to share it with the brother just behind her. Shy Br. Matthew extended a plump finger without meeting her eyes. They each crossed themselves and slipped into their seats in the choir.

“Miserere mei, Deus. . .” The choir and cantors had practiced for weeks to be able to sing Psalm 51 to the haunting melody composed by Allegri. The words ascended to the vaulted ceiling; the echoes reverberated. Candles flickered in the shadowed corners. She had been here for six months— long enough for the uniqueness of it all to have palled to boredom— but somehow there was a fascination she couldn't define. “Mystery,” the monks would tell her. And she could do no better.

What was the right term to describe how she was living? Counter-cultural existence? Alternate lifestyle? She pondered for a moment, then smiled. Parallel universe. That was it. She was definitely living in a parallel universe. The rest of the world was out there, going about its everyday life, with no idea that this world existed alongside of it.

It was a wonderful, cozy, secretive feeling as she thought of bankers and shopkeepers rushing home after a busy day, mothers preparing dinner for hungry school children, farmers milking their cows— all over this little green island the workaday world hummed along to the pace of modern life. And here she was on a verdant hillside in Yorkshire living a life hardly anyone knew even existed. Harry Potter. It was a very Harry Potter experience.

She forced her attention back to the penitential service with its weighty readings, somber plainchant responses, and minor key music set against purple vestments. Only when they came to the blessing of the ashes did she realize Fr. Dominic wasn’t in his usual place. Her disappointment was sharp. He had definitely said he was to do the imposition of the ashes and she had felt receiving the ashen cross on her forehead from that dear man would give the ancient ritual added meaning. Instead, Fr. Antony, one of the secular priests who lectured at the college, not even one of the monastic community, stood to hold the small pot of palm ashes while Fr. Anselm, the Superior of the Community, blessed them with holy water and incense.

Felicity knelt at the altar rail, “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” The ashes were cold, a sooty mark of grief, gritty on her forehead.

“Amen,” she responded automatically.

She was back in her seat, turning ahead to the final hymn, “Forty Days and Forty Nights,” when she heard the soft slapping of sandals on the stone floor. Oh, there’s Fr. Dominic. She relaxed at the thought, putting away her worries that he had been taken suddenly ill. But her relief was short-lived when Fr. Clement, the Principal of the college, and Jonathan Breen, a scholar making a retreat at the monastery, slipped to the altar for their ashes.

The final notes of the postlude were still echoing high overhead when Felicity rose from her seat and hurried outside. Dinner, a vegetarian Lenten meal, would start in the refectory almost immediately and it wouldn’t do to be late. If she hurried, though, she could just dash back to her flat and pick up a book of Latin poetry for Fr. Dominic. She had a new volume of Horace, and she knew Fr. D loved the Roman's half Stoic, half Epicurean philosophy. He would have time to enjoy what he called his “guilty pleasure” while he recuperated from his indisposition.

She bounded up the single flight of stairs, flung open her door and came to a sudden halt. “Oh!” The cry was knocked from her like a punch in the stomach. She couldn’t believe it. She backed against the wall, closing her eyes in the hope that all would right itself when she opened them. It didn’t. The entire flat had been turned upside down.

Felicity stood frozen for perhaps a full minute, trying to take it all in: books pulled from shelves, drawers pulled from her desk, cushions flung from chairs. Hardly breathing, she rushed into her kitchen, bath, bedroom— all chaos— sheets and duvet ripped from her bed, clothes pulled from her wardrobe. She picked her way through scattered papers, dumped files, ripped letters. Dimly she registered that her computer and CD player were still there. Oh, and there was the Horace book still by her bed. She pulled her purse from under a pile of clothes. Empty. But its contents lay nearby. Credit cards and money still there.

Not robbery. So then, what? Why?

Was this an anti-women-clergy thing? Had she underestimated the extent of the resentment? Or was it an anti-American thing? The American president was widely unpopular in England. Had he done something to trigger an anti-American demonstration? Felicity would be the last to know. She never turned on the news.

Well, whatever it was, she would show them. If someone in the college thought they could scare her off by flinging a few books around she’d give them something new to think about. She stormed out, slamming her door hard enough to rattle the glass pane and strode up the hill at twice the speed she had run down it. Not for nothing her years of rigorous exercise at the ballet barre. When she reached the monastery grounds she keyed in the numbers on the security lock with angry jabs and barely waited for the high, black iron gates to swing open before she was speeding up the graveled walk.

Felicity's long blond braid thumped against her back as she charged onward, her mind seething. If those self-righteous prigs who posed as her fellow students thought they could put her off with some sophomoric trick—

She approached the college building, practicing the speech she would deliver to all assembled for dinner in the refectory: “Now listen up, you lot! If you think you can push me around just because your skirts are longer than mine. . .”

She punched a clenched-fist gesture toward her imaginary cassock-clad audience, then saw the Horace book still clutched in her hand. Oh, yes. First things first. She would have missed the opening prayer anyway. She would just run by Father D’s room— then she would tell them.

She hurried on up the path beyond the college to the monastery, ran her swipe card through the lock, and was halfway down the hall before the door clicked shut behind her. She had only been to Dominic’s room once before, to collect a poetry book he was anxious to share with her, but she would have had no trouble locating it, even had the door not been standing ajar.

She pushed it wider, preparing to step in. “Father D— ” she stopped at the sight of a man in a black cassock standing there praying. He jerked around at the sound of her voice and she recognized Fr. Antony, her church history lecturer.

She took a step backward when she saw the look of horror on his sheet-white face. “Felicity. Don’t come in.” He held up a hand to stop her and she saw it was covered with blood.

“Father D! Is he hemorrhaging?” She lunged forward, then stopped at the sight before her.

The whole room seemed covered in blood. Bright red splotches on the pristine white walls and bedding, on the open pages of a prayer book, on the statue of Our Lord, forming lurid stigmata on His hands extended in mercy. . .

And in the center of the floor, in a pool of red, his battered head all but unrecognizable— her beloved Father Dominic. The smell of fresh blood clogged her nostrils. Gorge rose in her throat.

“Felicity— ” Fr. Antony extended his reddened hands to her in a pleading gesture.

“No!” She screamed, wielding her Latin book as a shield against the blood, a red haze of shock and horror clouding her vision.

She couldn’t believe Antony's face could get even whiter. “Felicity, wait. Listen—”

She dimly registered his words, but the voice in her head shouted with far greater force. No! It can’t be. It's a mistake. She was in the wrong room. Must be. She shook her head against the nightmare she had seen yet couldn't accept that she had seen. Blackness rolled toward her.

She staggered backward into the hall and slumped to the floor as the room spun before her. She closed her eyes against the darkness as her mind reeled, groping for a coherent thought. How could this be?

Only a short time ago she had been reveling in the peace of this remote holy place. Where could such violence have come from? How was it possible here? In a place of prayer? To a holy man. Why?

If Fr. Dominic wasn't safe who could be?

And even as the questions tumbled, half-formed through her head, even as her mind denied the act her eyes saw, she knew she had to find an explanation. How could she continue studying— believing in— purpose and justice if such senseless irrationality reigned free?

Focusing on the questions gave her strength to get her feet under her again.

Antony was still standing dazed in the gore-splattered room looking as though he could collapse in the middle of the pool of blood. Felicity grabbed his arm, jerked him into the corridor, and shoved him against the wall where he stayed, leaning heavily. He held his hands before his face as if unbelieving they were his own. “When he missed mass I came to check on him. . . I felt for a pulse— ”

“We must get help!” Felicity looked wildly around.

“Yes, of course.” Her energy seemed to galvanize Antony. He pushed himself forward unsteadily. “Forgive me, I feel so stupid. It was the horror. I— we must tell the Superior. He’ll call the police.”

“Police? You mean an ambulance.” Felicity started toward the room again. Yes, that was it— how could she have dithered so when they must get help. “He’s lost so much blood, but maybe—”

“No!” Antony gripped her shoulder with more strength than she realized he was capable of. “Don’t go in there again, Felicity. It’s useless.”

She knew. She had seen the blood.

My Take

I am enjoying this book, no doubt.  It's a book right up my alley.  Mystery.  History.  And and a little bit of "He likes her/She likes him."  I haven't completed the book, so I don't know if it blossoms into anything more than that, but even if it doesn't, I'll be okay with it.  The story overrides any of that.  I've curled up with this book and a cup of green tea on several mornings and relished every moment.  I am looking forward to reading more in the series.  This is not a pick-up/put-down kind of book.  You will need a good slot of time to enjoy this book properly.  That's why it's perfect for fall or winter.

There is a lot of history involved, but the author breaks up the history lessons with action and tells it in a great narrative style so as to never give the impression that you are sitting through history class.  Very important.  If you absolutely loathe history as a general rule, this book may change your mind.

And then there is the heroine, Felicity, and the guy she is trying to help, Fr. Antony.  They have good chemistry and there is a bit of push and pull that makes their relationship more interesting.  "Will they?  Won't they?" (fall in love, that is) kind of thing always makes for a bit of good tension.  Love it.

The scenery that is described is blended well with the story and helps to make you feel like you are right there, helping to figure out the mystery right along with the characters.  And then there is the spiritual journey that Felicity, and Fr. Antony, for that matter, go through.  Totally accessible.  Completely credible.  Nothing highfalutin. 

If you are up for a nice, thick book full of mystery, history and faith that you can really delve into, then this book is for you. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Taking Leeli a Bath

The Affectionate One insisted on "Taking Leeli a bath."  Can you guess who ended up with the most water on her?  I'll give you a hint:  she only has two legs.

It was so fun to see my little girl give "her" little girl a little bath.  Leeli does not like getting wet.  At all.  Not even a little bit.  As in she's not getting anywhere near any kind of water, no matter how small, if she can help it.  Once she gives in to the process and stops fighting, she shakes like crazy.  And gives everyone within eyesight those big puppy dog eyes as if she is the epitome of a long suffering saint.  Which she ain't.  Just ask the carpet shampoo-er we've had to borrow multiple times.

I'm just sayin'.

And even after she's dry she shakes for a good half hour.  I think it's her way of getting more attention and being held a lot longer.  Neither The Affectionate One nor I are too put out to hold our little Leeli for as long as she'll let us.  Usually she is too busy to be held since she loves torturing our chocolate lab, Bear.  Or Tangerine our cat.  Bear loves the attention Leeli gives him.  Tangerine: not so much.

It's neat seeing The Affectionate One being  so nurturing and loving.  Not to mention taking on a chore so Mommy doesn't have to tackle it!  

Counting it all joy (even when it gets a little wet and wild),

Thursday, September 2, 2010

A Little Guilt And Then A Little More Guilt

Oh, the guilt.  It is eating me.  Alive.  Eating me alive, I tell you.

I promise that I am an emotional and sentimental person.  Put me in front of a Nicolas Sparks movie and I am undone.  And you know that Folgers commercial where the son sneaks in and makes coffee on Christmas morning?  Well, I get a catch in my throat every time I see it.  Because:

me = big ol' sap.

Back to the guilt.  I may have mentioned that my youngest started kindergarten this year.  Whirling Dervish.  The little guy who cannot run out of the house to play without giving me a big sloppy kiss on whichever part of me he reaches first (his usual preference: my arm).  The rambunctious, barking-like-a-puppy while in church, little man that would rather do somersaults down the sidewalk than walk like the other kids.  Yeah.  Him.

He got on that bus his first day like the big boy that he is and only blew me a kiss once he was rolling down the street.  Like an after thought.  I was anticipating tears and a wad of tissues being hastily employed.  By me, not him of course. 

But all I did was . . . was . . . wave and blow a kiss back.  With a big dopey, sleepy smile on my face.

No tears.  No sniffles.  No wads of tissues.

All I could think was, "Oh, finally I can catch up on nearly seven years of having to get up at 5:30 in the a. m."  Even during pregnancy he liked to gently wake me at ungodly hours of the morning.  He was all elbows and knees then, I am sure of it.

See what I mean?  Am I the least feeling of mothers or what?  The best part of my day is when he climbs on that bus, slides into his seat and blows me a kiss out the window.  And the second best part of the day is when he gets home from school, runs in the door and motions for me to sit down so he can sit on my lap and snuggle.

Such nice bookends to my day full of free time.

Counting it all joy,