Score one for Mom!

After hanging on my "to be quilted rack" for about 3 or 4 months I managed to get yet another soccer quilt, quilted and bound.  Wahoo! This quilt was made up of assorted soccer jerseys and t-shirts from 2007-2010.  Now both younger kids have their own quilts to sit on during their brothers matches.  My only error. .. The two quilts are not the same size, so of course they both want the bigger one. Sigh.


Best Date Night Ever

John and I try to schedule a date night at least once a month.  Just a time for the two of us to be together and enjoy a conversation without interruption. (crazy?) The boys are relatively unconcerned, usually indifferent about us leaving.  As long as they have TV, Video games and enough food to sustain them they are happy.  Emma on the other hand likes to put up a fight.  She hates being left here with her brothers.  It is not that they are mean, quite the contrary they cater to her more than I like.  She just wants something special to do.  She feels left out. She will complain, argue and cry every single time.

After a long, long week away last week John and I decided we would have a date night this past weekend.  We had several options available, the usual movie, dinner, shopping or music at the bar which were all okay with me.  Then on Wednesday evening I heard an advertisement for Hairspray the musical.  The performance dates were this weekend How perfect. We haven't been to a way off Broadway production in years.  The more I thought about it the more I realized this would something Emma would LOVE.

Emma is our performer.  Musicals are one of her favorite things. She loves drama, singing, and dancing. Hairspray just happens to be her new favorite.  After consulting with John we decided to include Emma in date night.

Saturday John and I announced we were going to have date night.  Emma of course highly objected.  5 minutes after the announcement Emma gets a phone call.  It was Daddy asking her out on a date with Mom and Dad.  She was beaming.  She spent the rest of the night planning her wardrobe, singing the hairspray songs and dancing around the house.

When we FINALLY got to the theater  she was in awe.  Everything was exciting, even the orchestra pit! She sat and sang along with every song, danced in her seat and shared secrets with Dad, it was so cute!  She compared every act to the movie and shared the differences.  When the final song in Act II came on, (You can't stop the beat)  she asked if it was wrong to stand up and dance in the isle!  With no one sitting behind us in the balcony she did just that!

On the way home she sat in the back seat bopping to the music only she could hear, and reliving the musical in her head.  Half asleep as we pulled into the driveway she said, "Thanks Mom and Dad.  This was the best Date night EVER!"



  Back to school always brings with it challenges of a new grade, school, teacher and of course new illnesses.  The kids have been sick, and they have shared. Therefore I have been under-the-weather for several weeks. My desire for self preservation has far outweighed the desire to quilt, knit, craft or really do anything other than sleep. It is with great awe and wonder that I show you anything even remotely close to a finish. (So, Don't worry it isn't even remotely close. :)

Here is my Modern Medallion Quilt with the next row of patchwork blocks, Sewn. Be amazed.

It has been in this state for at lease a month, maybe not quite that long.  But at long last here it is.


I am ... right?

My oldest had an in class essay to do sometime during the first week of school.  The essay was for English III honors. Keep this in mind as you are reading.  His stress level was high, which is the only consolation I am giving him.  *an aside*  (over the summer they were required to read an autobiography or biography.  M chose a book about Gary Paulson.  They had questions to answer regarding their selection and were told AHEAD that these questions would be used to write an in class essay.) 

The topic was something along the lines of, How did the person you chose to read about live or not live out the American dream?  Sorry I cannot be more specific, I am obviously not in English III.  Mark stressed about the essay, but seemed confident after it was over. (This should have been my first sign.)  He received the essay  back graded a week later.  He received a grade that neither he nor his father was happy about.  

When John questioned him, of course it was the teachers fault.   John looked M in the eye and said, "Let me read the essay."  John read the first paragraph and said, "You are lucky you passed this essay.  Your essay reads like a 4th grader wrote it.  The grammar is so atrocious I can't even see beyond it to tell if your context makes sense."  Well, M huffed and puffed as teens do, gave lots of eye rolls but John wouldn't relent.  John said, "This weekend you will re-write it for me. You have become a dependent clause and it is time you start recognizing one."  

Amazingly, M did rewrite the essay.  John, being far more knowledgeable in grammar than I, sat down with Mark and went sentence by sentence through the paper working on grammar.  When it was finished John said, "Now, I want you to email  the corrected version to your teacher.  I want you to ask her to re-read the paper.  Ask her to provide you with feedback and let her know that you want to do better. The worst that could happen is that she will say no."  Let me tell you I thought M was going to have a massive coronary when he heard this.  The look on M's face was priceless!  It took 3 days and more badgering and persistence than, well a badger , but finally M gave up the fight. 

All the while John was butting heads with M, John kept worrying about whether he was doing the right thing. Typical parental guilt, Am I being to hard on him? Am I expecting to much from him?  Is he really capable of the work I think he is?  If you are the parent, You know the drill, I am sure. 

His teacher agreed to re-read the essay and M, unwilling re-submitted his paper.  That evening John went with M to his meet the teacher night.  The first stop....English.  John said, that Mrs. W, M's English teacher, was completely blown away by M's willingness to better himself.  She said that this was the first time in 19 years of teaching that she has ever had a student ask for help just because they wanted to improve themselves, and not because they wanted their grade raised. (although that would have been OK )  As a matter of fact, Mrs. W. said she bragged about M in the teacher's lounge to her colleagues. John called me all excited about the positive response Mrs. W. had given.  He also spent time discussing the wealth of resources she has in her class room. Mrs. W personally invited John to bring M in to work on grammar.  She assured him he is welcome at any time. He was so happy that he was justified.  (I was just happy that I had nothing to do with any of it! :)

I talked with M the next day, and tried to give him praise for his hard work. M looked a little down.  When I asked what was wrong he replied, "All I was thinking the whole time Mrs. W was talking was, "Man, I cannot believe dad was right!"  The only thing that could have been more mortifying to M at that point, was if John had broken into his happy dance in the classroom.  It was mortifying enough to watch him do it in the Kitchen.