Friday, July 18, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Bloom. (Plus the most amazing quilt ever!)

Today's Five Minute Friday writing prompt is: Bloom!

Blooming.  Blooming rain!  (said in a British accent)

Not sure why I thought of that.  It's not raining here in St. Louis.  Actually it has been nothing short of perfection this week.  Surely this can't be July!

Back to that British accent thing.  In high school, my brother Adam was in our high school's production of My Fair Lady (side of my least favorite musicals).  He was Cockney #3 or something like that.  He stood around and warmed his hands by the garbage can fire.  On the final night of the show, we thought it would be a hoot if I pulled my hair up, put on his cockney costume, smudged some dirt on my nose and did his bows for him during the curtain call.  I think our mom was quite surprised when he snuck in to the chair next to her before the end of the show.  I tried my best to mimic Adam's walk and stage mannerisms.  I must have been concentrating too hard because the curtain nearly knocked me over as it was being pulled shut.  With a little bit o' luck, I made it out of the curtain call in one piece.

On a separate note...yesterday I got the most wonderful surprise at my door.  My little sister and I were eating breakfast in our PJ's and we heard a noise at the door, thinking the mail had arrived.  But, lo and behold, it was my friend Laura and she was bearing gifts!  Get ready to be amazed at the most incredible quilt you may ever see:

It's all Harry Potter!!  Complete with the Knight Bus, Hogwarts crest, Deathly Hollows symbol and even a "Make Cupcakes, Not Horcruxes" block! Feel free to zoom in on this puppy and take a gander at all the intricate paper piecing she did here.  Just WOW.

And on it the most incredible baby wizard you may ever see:

Bless him, he knows his mummy!

Needless to say, Laura is crazy talented at this quilting business.  (Seriously, look at all these amazing quilts she's made!)    And a crazy thoughtful friend.  Thank you forever, Laura.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Belong

Another edition of Five Minute Friday!  This week's one-word prompt: Belong.


Belong.  For some reason, it made the Cheers theme song pop into my head.  "Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name..."  I love that show.  Favorite character, hands down is "NORM!"

It also reminds me of cafeteria school lunches.  Once you hit junior high, you're suddenly able to pick where you want to sit for lunch.  How terrifying.  Especially on the first day of the school year.  You're not completely sure which of your friends are in this lunch period with you.  So you sweat.  You walk in and scan the cafeteria desperately looking for a table with people you know.  But you try to look like you don't care.  And you sweat.  The clock is ticking and you're sure everybody is staring at you now.  You sweat some more.

"Oh crap, I'm sweating.  Did I put on deodorant today?" (clamp arms at sides)
"Oh crap, I'm sweating.  Are my mega-bangs falling flat?" (poof up bangs)
"Oh crap, I'm sweating.  And everyone probably sees it under the arms of my No Fear shirt!" (unclamp arms from sides, but just a little bit)

You find your friend in the lunch line.  All is well.  Until you both realize you still need a table to sit at.  And you sweat.  Together.


Five Minute Friday is a weekly one-word writing prompt by Lisa Jo Baker in which you have five minutes to write whatever pops into your head.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Exhale


I have had two distinct moments of "exhale" today.  Both a little out of the ordinary.  It was a day with lots of rushing and rearranging plans, last minute packing and frenzy.  But on the way to my parents house, where I am currently typing away, the baby and two dogs were all asleep and it was silent.  For a whole 45 minutes.  So I just listened to the quiet.  My husband thinks I'm nuts.  He blares his music in the car turbo loud and I tell him my favorite sound is silence.  Total opposites.  But we're married and it's wonderful.  While listening to the silence on the road, I had a chance to just pray and think.  It's amazing how clear everything sounds in your head when it's silent.

My second exhale is actually right now.  I'm sitting here at my parents house alone on the fourth of July as the baby sleeps and the dogs make muffled barks at the sound of firecrackers in the distance.  I was thinking, I don't remember the last time I've been alone at the house I grew up in.  It feels kind of weird.  My mom just texted me directions on how to turn the TV on and how to find HGTV.  But I think I like the quiet again.

Today, my husband's grandpa passed away while a marching band paraded by the house.  Silence and noise.  On Independence Day.  In a way, I think it's kind of beautiful that he went home today.  Independence…freedom…today Jim is truly free, and no doubt there was a lot of noise and celebration (perhaps even a celestial marching band) as he was welcomed home at last.


Five Minute Friday is a weekly one-word writing prompt by Lisa Jo Baker in which you have only five minutes to write whatever pops into your head.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

1992 World Cup

Apparently this whole World Cup thing is a big deal.  I watched a little bit of the US v Belgium game yesterday with my hubby, and I even got into it a little bit!  In addition to the downright creative costumes in the crowd, the commentators were an unexpected highlight to me.  In what other US sport do you hear such poetic statements as, "He was plucked from his youth at the age of 16 (i.e. He was recruited early)?"

My youngest brother and sister would be so proud of me for watching.  They're pretty awesome at soccer, but it seems I didn't get those genes.

Flashback....1992, Hillsboro, a small white house on Rountree Street.  A young Ree gets ready for her first soccer practice.  She pulls on her bright orange soccer shirt, cut-off sweatpants shorts, and pulls her hair back in a high-and-tight pony tail.  And there, sitting on her bedroom floor staring back at her mockingly, was her arch nemesis...Shin Guards and his crony Tube Socks.  Mom comes in to check on her.

"Are you ready yet, Ree?"

Tears well up in her eyes and her cheeks flush hot with anger.  "No."
"Well you need to hurry up; we're going to be late!"

"I'm not wearing these things! They look stupid! No one else will be wearing them!"

"Put them on and let's go."

Fuming, young Ree straps on her shin guards and pulls her tube socks up over them.  She tries desperately to hold it all together as she silently hops in the back seat of the cream-colored Ford Escort.  As they pull up to the soccer field, Mom gets out of the car.  Ree doesn't.  Instead, she starts crying.

"I won't get out of the car!  I look stupid!"

Exasperated, Mom looks over at Coach Sheila.  Horror of horrors, Coach Sheila has the gall to actually walk up to the car and see what's going on.  Ree stares straight ahead, tears streaming down her face.  After a brief explanation, Coach Sheila tries to rally young Ree.  "But look, everyone else is wearing shin guards too!  It's part of playing soccer!"

Ree held firm, refusing to get out of the car.  Mom and Coach exchange a few brief words, and Ree was driven back to Rountree Street in the backseat of the cream-colored Ford Escort.  World Cup Victory.

At least for a day.

The next day, Ree was dropped off at soccer practice, shin guards and all.  And she played for one whole season, making one glorious goal...for the other team.