October 2006

Monthly Archive

Happy Halloween!

Posted by on 31 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Gardens and Life, Uncategorized

Once again the harvest is over

once again the leaves cover the ground

once again the misty fogs hovers

once again pruning and burning begins

Now the frost comes

now the dark days

now the long nights

now the remembrance of summer passed

Soon the earth turns

from day into day

from night into night

from time into time

Gather in your children

gather in your cares

gather in your joys

gather and celebrate:

Happy Halloween


First Frost, First Freeze

Posted by on 31 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Gardens and Life, Uncategorized

Yesterday we woke to the first significant frost on the ground.  I cut the last good dahlias in the afternoon and gave them to my mother for her birthday.

Last night when I went to sleep it was already below freezing and remained so for most of this morning.  Only the dogs, with their fur coats, wanted to play in the sunshine.

I will wander around the yard this afternoon, but don’t expect the more tender plants to have made it.  I left a couple of planters outside, thinking I had more time… 

Oh well.  Such is life.  And on the plus side, once the dahlias are asleep, I can lift them and separate them for next year, and start thinking where I want to put new beds in!

A cool online publisher…

Posted by on 30 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Uncategorized

for short stories!  also has a game section on the website.


I have only read a few of the stories, but they are interesting.  And short stories are about what my attention span allows these days!

What we did this week after the apple festival

Posted by on 29 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Uncategorized

Okay, this is mostly just a mother’s brag blog…  so on Thursday there was a concert at school.  Here is our participant:

Our trumpetertrumpter, version two

Then on Friday we went to the Seattle Symphony to hear David Daniels (contratenor) and Nicholas McGegan (conductor) in the first of the “Basically Baroque” series.  VERY nice!  If you have a chance to see either of them in concert, do.  Daniels has a lovely voice, McGegan has a very beautiful manner of conducting.  Here are my fellas, after the concert:

happy concert-goers

Saturday was the Fall Festival at the childrens’ school.  Their costumes turned out well.  Here are a whole bunch of pics, including one of the “princess” our younger one met at the festival.  I made her cape, too.

A young jedia young prince

two together

ready to defend and protect...

prince and princess at the ball

Hope for the Future

Posted by on 27 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Gardens and Life, Peace Making, Uncategorized

My earlier post on the whole state of the world and “why bother” has kept me thinking.  Today I received an email from the National Wildlife Federation encouraging me to join an organization that offsets carbon use and emissions.  I have done a cursory checking out, and it looks very good.  http://carbonfund.org/ is an organization that purchases the emissions permissions (love rhymes like that) and keeps them, preventing some of the pollution problems.  They also help fund alternative energy sources.  There is an emissions calculator that lets people see how much they contribute to the whole global-warming thing.

Successful Apple Festival

Posted by on 23 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Gardens and Life, Uncategorized

Yesterday’s apple festival at the local grange hall was great fun. I think everyone who came had a good time, and I hope that it helped our friends who provide the lovely heirloom apples! All of us were able to help with set-up, serving and clean-up. The weather was lovely and the people who came were just as nice as the weather!

Here are a few pics.  If you let your mouse hover over the picture, you’ll get a caption.
the grange where the festival was held

the iconic fruit stand truck and sign

Janine, at the entrance -- co-owner of fruit stand

boys helping set up

baked apples

I did not bake anything for this…  just served it up.  That’s me, in the apron.

apple pies and applesauce cake!

the hall fills with customers

my parents came!

winter squash for sale...

The reason for it all!  Apples.

For those who may not be familiar, a “grange hall” is a meeting place, originally established in farming and rural communities. The grange membership is composed of community members who work to make life better for the community, and they make their buildings available to people for events.

As a side note, this is the hall where my beloved and I had our first year’s anniversary party… since we hadn’t done the whole “wedding thing” it was our chance to share our happiness with friends and family. More on that (and a few pics) another time…

Bus update

Posted by on 20 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Uncategorized

Well, as I requested, kid received a written notice of his infraction.  He is at “stage one” in the system.  Amounts to a warning, but he was impressed enough (I hope) to take it seriously and treat all the adults in charge with more respect.

A Note to an Online Community

Posted by on 19 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Peace Making, Politics and War, Uncategorized

I sent this originally as an email to an online community I belong to, where the topic of what is happening in Korea has been mentioned.

I am strangely not uptight about the Korean bomb thing. I grew up with the knowledge that nuclear holocaust was possible, probably inevitable. Yet, life went on. It was the only way to survive. Just keep living.

If tomorrow I died, would my life today have been worth living? That is really all that matters to me. I could die of illness, injury or murder tomorrow, as easily as with a nuclear or other military attack. I grew up a military brat, the idea that war can break out, even come to the United States directly, is not news. The idea of fall-out frightens me, but since there is nothing we could do about it, I can’t manage to worry. I figure we’ll have to cross that bridge if it gets built.

What concerns me is the people who, even before 9/11 and the Korean escalation, live as if life _won’t_ continue. They eat things that are bad for them and for the planet, they wear things that are made by children and slaves, they drive things that consume vast quantities of resources in both manufacture and locomotion, and they treat other people as if they don’t matter.

This sort of living almost seals the lid on the coffin of “life as we know it” — certainly the world my children are inheriting is almost unrecognizable from my grandparents’ world! The news yesterday was that the rain we normally get in the autumn and winter will in the next 50 years increase so that flooding in my region, and diminished snowpack leading to water problems in the summers, will be the norm rather than the exception. And yes, it’s attributed to global warming. Link to the story here : komotv.com/stories/46051.htm

So when our family, in our own way, try to live responsibly, we are faced with an overwhelming obstacle. No matter how frugally we live (and we are still not as minimalist and earth-friendly as we could be), we have only to look at our immediate neighbors to know it’s not making a difference.

To save gasoline and wear and tear on the vehicles, I am in town only once a week. Occasionally twice. There are several Hummers in our area and large trucks, single-drivers in each and all nicely polished and detailed — not needed for actual employment in other words, making daily commutes of 30 miles or more to work.

We make a lot of our own food (though with two hungry kids I admit to laying in a good supply of frozen things they can reheat); and buy as much of our produce from local sources as we can, recycle or compost nearly everything and rarely fill even half a can of garbage a week. We even manage to grow some of our own stuff, though I am sure we expend way more resources on our meagre crop than makes financial sense. Still, the deer seem to appreciate our efforts. And the kids do enjoy the fresh fruit and veggies when they get to them first.

Long run, I guess I have actually given up hope of making a difference to the world as a whole. Not that I’ll let on to the kids. Perhaps they’ll find a way out of the mess my grandparents’ and parents’ generations — and now mine — have made.

Note, however, I have not given up hope. I’ll keep voting for the candidates and issues that make sense to me, contributing to causes I believe in as I can, and quietly trying to live a life that is a good example.

Wonders never cease…

Posted by on 17 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Peace Making, Uncategorized

And a new list of the seven greatest wonders of the world is being compiled. To vote for the seven you believe are the greatest extant wonders, check out


And, while the previous 7 wonders were centered on the Mediterranean, these choices come from all over the world. What a superb way to acknowledge the contributions of many cultures to modern life!

The new list of the greatest wonders of the world will be announced July 7, 2007.

More kid stuff

Posted by on 16 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: Family Matters, Uncategorized

And this time, it was our kid’s fault.  He screamed at the bus driver for an imagined wrong.

Not sure what the repercussions will be.  Emailed the principal and school counselor and encouraged the driver to send an official written warning to our kid.

For someone who talks about being kind and helpful, this kid just doesn’t seem to “get it” or at least not consistently enough…

Fortunately,  Tom and I are on the same page.  We have rescinded his internet connection; all TV and computer time (unless for school) is restricted; extra chores are being imposed.  Have an appointment with a non-school counselor…  but it will be two weeks before we can get in.  Meantime, we will be talking — a lot — about choices, actions and values.

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