Sunday, October 28, 2007

I think I'm falling in love with October.

Maybe it's the excitement and hope of Advent and's in the near future. It's close enough to start rehearsing Christmas music with my students, to day dream about my Christmas tree, red wreaths of berries, draping garlands and stockings around our new banister, wrapping gifts with lots of ribbon...of making new and meaningful traditions with Maya, teaching her the story and all the beauty of what it means.

I can already imagine that feeling of timelessness of sitting in my parents' house with my brothers and sisters feeling full and warm. And yet it's still distant enough that there's no sense of urgency or worry about all the holiday performances, shopping, schedules, and the worst part of all....when it's over. But that won't happen for months! It's still just October.

And I'm falling in love with October for it's own merits too. Fall has been rising on my 'favorite season' scale for the last few years. Mostly for all the sappy and predictable reasons...falling leaves, yellow sun and cold wind, sweaters, pumpkins, candles, cinnamon....
But also, by October, the school year is settling into a more comfortable, rewarding routine. I'm remembering again how deeply I love getting to know my students and to see the ways they surprise and delight me daily. I also love fall meals... the warmth and comfort of potatoes and carrots that have been cooking all day. Apple cider. And apple pie.

I even baked my first pie...ever. From scratch with fresh honey crisp apples from the farmers market. I think I'll try a pumpkin pie next.

The most recent October highlight was hours and hours with my Mandy. Maya was so excited that Mandy was coming to our house, that ever since she came...Mandy is referred to as "House."
We're still working on that.

But after Maya settled down from her marathon peek-a-boo game, her 101 stories, songs, and her impressive display of every trick she knows, she went to bed....and Mandy and I sipped coffee at Barnes & Noble, shared a hot apple dumpling with whipped cream, came back home and talked till the early morning. There really isn't another person on Earth that knows me the way she does.
She seems to 'get' me in ways that I don't even 'get' myself. And as we talk, she affirms so many things that I've been thinking and feeling...and yet she also makes me think about things in new ways too. After more than 20 years of friendship, and sharing mostly the same life-experiences and influences, she still surprises me and challenges my ways of seeing the world. Though I long to see her all the time, I'm still somehow surprised each time by how much I needed her conversation and presence. She is one of the wisest, most beautiful, fascinating people I know....she even ran a half-marathon today!
And I miss her already. Ohio seems to steal a lot of people I love.

Friday, October 19, 2007


I love to collect little swatches of fabric...certain that someday I'll make something wonderful with them.

I found these ones today online. It's not quite the same as the real thing. But...

...sometimes it just takes color and texture and print to make my heart race a little...

Rushing wind and Chopin...

...are serenading my ears as Maya sleeps in the next room.

Outside my window I see massive trees, brushed with yellow, bending in the leaves swirling around, and swarms of thrill-seeking birds hovering and diving on the powerful currents.

My pumpkin spice candle has been burning all day...and the laundry is slowly getting cleaned and put away.

This is what I imagine, when I long to just *be* at home.

Somehow the combination of unstructured unhurried time with Maya and a few hours by myself, a tiny bit of productivity, music, and a gray fall sky seems therapeutic. And for a little while, I don't feel worried about the future, disappointed with my inadequacies, or sad about the brokenness and pain that usually seem to lurk everywhere. I feel hopeful and content. Grateful.

This is what I long for while I rush through my days, moving from one responsibility to the next. This kind of peaceful alone-ness...and also the laughter of Maya when she's being tickled, her happy singing, and her 101 requests for a another "sto-to" to be read. (Goodnight Gorilla has been the favorite this week.)

This...and waking up without an alarm, talking and laughing with Ryan, feeling no urgency to get out of bed and face the day.

A few more treasured moments from our fall...

Monday, October 15, 2007

we're missing these two today...

...and every day.

Love you JaeJae and Addy!

Friday, October 12, 2007

it's not just the sepia...

...she's really *that* beautiful and delightful and surprising and funny.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

you won't believe...

...who finally posted on their blog again!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Squash Bisque

After a full day of teaching violin lessons (while playing with my Maya) at school, the perfect dinner was calling out to me on our counter. One large butternut squash just waiting to become...

...with some cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar & a swirl of condensed milk on top.

*And* there's more than enough left for lunch tomorrow too. I can't wait.