Tagged with "childhood"
15 Oct
2014
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Growing Apples Without Trying

I’ve done more research than I care to admit on gardening. I’ve read article after article and cannot seem to grow a thing. Gardening advice is hard for me to comprehend. My friends, who manage to grow food, seem magical to me.

This year I didn’t even attempt to plant anything. Our apple tree, which was already full grown when we moved in, decided to show me the glory of nature…again.

red apples in a bucket

Our tree sits in the backyard next to our back deck. Our four children are hard on our backyard. Grass struggles to grow under the relentless pounding of feet. Not much watering happens in the backyard where it seems to be more dirt and tree roots than anything else. I dread when people are visiting and want to go into the backyard. In my eye, it really seems like we just don’t care enough about the backyard, but I’ve been reassured countless times that my vision of the yard is not the reality of the situation.

red apples in a bucket

That apple tree has been climbed up countless times in the 12 years we’ve called this house home. Items have been tethered to the trunk and hung from the branches. The stories that tree could tell of make-believe games played around its base and in its branches.

person holding a red apple in her hand

The tree is primarily watered by whatever sustenance God provides. Yet every other year it produces an abundance of apples for months on end. Our buckets overflow. Even as I write, there are still apples on the tippy top of the tree. They look just like the apples I buy at the store and are the definition of organic. I have days when I look at the tree in awe of what it can do with the little it has to work with.

I’ve used that tree so many times when talking to the kids about never underestimating yourself or someone else. That apple tree appears so unassuming and small for what it’s capable of doing and providing, much like these little people I’m raising.


 
Reeling in Frazzled Emotions
By     |    Sep 21, 2014
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Reeling in Frazzled Emotions

My emotions have been raw this week. I feel unsteady and frazzled. I took two phone calls this week from people telling me of the unexpected deaths of two people I served side-by-side with on different boards. They shared my passion for children, literacy and our community. They were here one day and gone the next. I’ve struggled to find peace in what I don’t understand. I stood in my front yard and listened to children playing during recess at... [Read More]

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Parenthood Not Quite Like I Imagined
By     |    Sep 16, 2014
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Parenthood Not Quite Like I Imagined

It was 9:10 p.m. We had been at the football field for three hours. The sun had set long ago, and the air was chilly. I stood with two friends and my husband when we heard the referee say the words we had been longing for, “That’s time coach.” Followed by an addition we could have done without, “There are eight plays left. Do you want to play them?” Ugh. I wanted to answer for them, ” No. Just make... [Read More]

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Really, We’re Not City Folk
By     |    Aug 22, 2014
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Really, We’re Not City Folk

I overheard one of my boys refer to himself as a “city boy” and couldn’t help but giggle. Living in the heart of Wyoming makes it almost impossible to be a legitimate “city boy,” even if you do live in the state’s second largest town. At 50,ooo people, give or take, our town is larger by far than all but the Wyoming capital. We have ample shopping and restaurant options compared to most of our state and even a public... [Read More]

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Going to the Beach: Seminoe State Park
By     |    Jul 15, 2014
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Going to the Beach: Seminoe State Park

Growing up landlocked in Wyoming with parents who weren’t travelers meant the only thing I knew about beaches came from books and movies. We were mountain people. I traveled to Mexico in high school and realized I couldn’t be pigeonholed into loving one geographical feature. The beach had a magical hold of me. Unfortunately, the hold isn’t so strong that I find myself living anywhere near a coast. A beach with ocean views is at least a 16 hour drive... [Read More]

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Learning to Appreciate the County Fair Parade
By     |    Jul 10, 2014
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Learning to Appreciate the County Fair Parade

I survived one of my least favorite parenting tasks this week…the county fair parade. I have a high tolerance for all things kid-related, but the county fair parade has me actively attempting to bribe my children out of the whole affair. It’s hot. We’re never there early enough to be in the shade. No matter how early I attempt to secure a shady spot, I fail…every year. People and chairs start showing up on sidewalks a full three hours before the parade... [Read More]

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Drive-in Theatres: Bridging the Gap Between Then and Now
By     |    Jun 27, 2014
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Drive-in Theatres: Bridging the Gap Between Then and Now

I used to play on a rickety merry-go-round trying to avoid splinters while I held on. I was biding my time while the sun dipped farther into the horizon, just waiting for that moment when the movie screen would come alive with dancing concession stand goodies. I’d run back to the car, weaving between vehicles and posts with speakers stretched toward windows. The drive-in theatre is a highlight from my childhood memory reel. We don’t live close enough to a... [Read More]

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Crying Over the End of School
By     |    May 23, 2014
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Crying Over the End of School

I remember the day he pushed me away. When our oldest son was almost three years old, he went to climb a structure at a park we frequented and for the 10,000th time I went to spot him. This time was different. He told me he could do it himself, and he did. Last night that same boy who I no longer look down to talk with, who wears the same size shoe as I do and whose hands no... [Read More]

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Learning to be Unhappy
By     |    Mar 24, 2014
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Learning to be Unhappy

I was part of the conversation, but really didn’t want to be. A group of moms were discussing how they ultimately want for their children to just be happy. I feel stress mounting every time I hear that statement, “I just want my kids to be happy.” That’s a lot of pressure. Pressure I don’t want or need to be putting on myself. I can’t make it through a day without feeling some other emotion besides happy. I know parents... [Read More]

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15 Underrated Children’s Books
By     |    Feb 12, 2014
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15 Underrated Children’s Books

I can’t be trusted in a used bookstore with a children’s book section. I’ve been known to go into a used book store to look for a book and come out with 35 books, minus the one I was searching for. My obsession with children’s books has forced me to make lists of books we already own to keep me from duplicating books. We have several children’s book series we collect (Berenstain Bears, Little Critter, Franklin the Turtle, Fancy Nancy,... [Read More]

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Late Night Television and Fear of the Dark
By     |    Feb 7, 2014
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Late Night Television and Fear of the Dark

My love of late night television stretches back over two decades when my fear of the dark began. I first watched The Tonight Show, then with Johnny Carson, as a 6th grader. We had moved into a new-to-us house. The house was older, not well-taken care of, and my bedroom was in the basement. I moved into a new neighborhood and was heading to middle school. That time in my childhood was full of insecurities and riddled with low self-esteem.... [Read More]

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