May 21, 2012

And now, for something completely different...

After school today, my 12-year-old daughter, Annie was fooling around with the idea of a resume, or as she spells it, "reseme." At 12, this is not a very important concept, and a grand opportunity to make fun of the sometimes-too-serious grown-ups. 

I thought her effort was clever, though it will probably never get her that summer babysitting job she wants in order to earn money to put books on her Kindle Fire...

For your amusement, I bring you Annie's 

Warning: In our house, it is a rite of passage to view at least 3 episodes of "Monty Python's Flying Circus," and "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" in its entirety by age 5.  As I read Annie's reseme, I couldn't help but thinking of the opening credits to the latter. You know, the part with the fiesta music and some mention of Llamas? There. Knitting reference accomplished. Let's move on...


“I’m all out of love,
So lost without you,
I knew you were right believing for
So long”

Name: Anne E. S. Winner
Favorite color: Blue
Favorite food: Spaghetti
Favorite number: 11

Past jobs: Professional Asassinator, The terminator, Mc Donalds, Wolverine, Spiderman, the Hulk, Reporter, detective, and Darth Vader

SKILLS AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Master of all Tarot cards, Professional assassin, Black belt in all martial arts, backwards walking champion, best person in the world, writer of many famous books, met William Shakespeare, became an overnight sensation, also a one hit wonder, killed a bear with own 2 hands, most attractive person in the world, also the most humble person in the world, Skilled hemp bracelet maker, rode a unicorn, hardcore camper, brought sexy back, attractive, Artist, fashion designer, back up lead singer  for Aero Smith, master chef in culinary arts, attractive, sweet genius winner, held breath longer than anyone in the Guinness book of world records, champion of  Chopped all-stars, attractive,  preformed heart surgery, Won the tour de France bicycle race, starred in Harry Potter as girl # 2, invincible, attractive, cross breaded a llama and unicorn creating a llama corn, #1 Adventure Time fan, survived without water for 6 months, attractive, created the revolution  against math being taught as a required class in school, created the acronym for F.A.C.E. (Filthy apes cause evolution), Won the super bowl as the quarter back for the Broncos, Confirmed the existence of cryptids(Big foot, Loch ness monster, Yeti,Chuba Cabra, Trained in CPR, attractive, ate 900 warheads in under a minute, caught a fly with chopsticks, burned asparagus out of hatred of asparagus, sang national anthem at a Phillies baseball game, traveled back to dinosaur times, voted scariest girl out of my peeps, tamed a tiger, eaten a live shark, attractive, swallowed a whole cactus, killed a man with a spoon, won a wrestling match, attractive, attractive, attractive, attractive……, and so on…….attractive, and attractive, makes the best bacon ever!, created a robot, signed the declaration of independence, and there’s a whole lot more that I just can’t type or my printer would explode in a fiery passion, but one more thing, attractiveJ

Education: Attended Hogwarts School of witchcraft and wizardry

Why I want this job: What job am I applying for again?

Additional information: Help run the Maniac club, Work for the government spies, and defeated Voldemort (J.K. Rowling loosely based the Harry Potter series on my life when I was at Hogwarts)

Last comments: Did I mention I was attractive?

May 17, 2012

Two Slouches and a Pair of Thigh Highs

Jolene's legs in her stockings
While the title implies a promise for some very racy reading, you may rest easy and read on if you planned on momentarily being offended. If you stop reading now in disappointment, I promise that I, on the other hand, will not be offended.

You may wonder, if you read my last post, if I have been knitting through all this chaos in my house.

Yes, yes I have. In fact, when things are tough, I knit. When stress comes, I knit. When I am hungry, I head straight to the pantry, bypass the healthier foods and devour two pounds of Ruffle's potato chips.

But I digress...

I love knitting. In spring and summer I especially love it, even when it's hot. There is something about being able to be outside that makes me imagine those kept Victorian (or Regency Era, for you Jane fans, of which I am one) ladies who were well schooled--and skilled--in language, art and fiber arts.

A "hive hat," pattern courtesy of The Knitting Bee in Hillsboro, Oregon
I would love to make myself a Regency Era dress (and I swear I will do it one day) and sit under a tree like Alice in Wonderland (pardon the cross-referencing) on a sunny day. Instead of chasing rabbits, however, I want to knit all day, picnic, knit, have tea, knit get the gist of the fantasy.

I love outdoor knitting so much that my husband created a sitting area for me on the east-facing front porch where I could sit in comfort to my heart's (and schedule's) content and while away the hours knitting.

Annie showing her brother's hat. I guess I should make her one.
This spring so far, I have completed a baby sweater for a friend, a slouchy hat for my son's 21st birthday and a pair of 100% baby alpaca thigh high toe-less and heel-less stockings for my dancer daughter. I had leftover alpaca, so I made a hive-style slouchy to match.

What fun it is so far, and I hope to make so much more!! I still have my mind set on some more sock patterns. I am re-reading the Hobbit in anticipation of the first film, coming out in December. Let's see what happens next!

A Mother's Day to Remember

A spring Oriental Poppy in our yard. Change can be beautiful
We've been busy. Really busy. When you have a house filled with 6 children (not usually all at once, but I always think of the number alone as impacting. I like to say it: six.) you cannot avoid it, but this year it is especially so for us.

We have a toddler who is about to become a preschooler, a child finishing her first year of middle school, a child finishing his first year of high school, a child graduating high school, a child turning 21 and a child graduating college.

I like to joke that if you want to feel young forever, just keep having babies. It's not that simple. You need energy to stay young, too, and alas, there does not seem to be a limitless supply, no matter how much vitamin D and Gingko Biloba you take. When the subject comes up, I also like to joke that when we decided to have a child when I was 39 and my husband was 43, God looked down upon us and said something like, "You want a child at 40? Here, try this one." Even God must have had trouble holding back laughter at this joke. And He must have certainly snickered to Himself as he sent us little Amy Rose. Amy Rose. Who keeps us up night after sleepless night and then runs, giggling, away from us non-stop all day as she tears apart everything in her path. Amy Rose: A tiny, impish, adorable tornado of cute desolation.

Energy or not, time marches on. While that seems to be a favorite theme of my mid-life epiphanies, it simply is true.

Last week, as I checked out two potential preschools for Amy, and was simultaneously planning a trip to Seattle to see my oldest daughter graduate from college on Mother's Day, I contemplated this year of change. It is quite a doozy.

I marvel at it all. Amy talks in great, adult sentences at just 3. Alex is leaving home soon; Ben will be a senior in 3 short years. And Jolene, my 23 year old, graduated from Cornish College for the Arts on Mother's Day with a BFA in dance, cum laude and on 4 scholarships. (I'm not proud or anything...ahem!)

The good and the bad of it all; the ugly and the drama that comes with teens, or the precocious mischief that comes with toddlers, all ends (usually...hopefully not the mischief...if I have my way...) in adulthood. And while there are, of course, even more rites of passage through adulthood, this last year feels especially meaningful to me, like there is a crossing of all the paths at once. Sort of like the planets aligning.

It's a great time to see. To really see in our house. See the stages of life all at once, it seems. Even my parents come to mind. My dad turn 81 next month and it just increases the wonder. It feels like I have been given a map, unfolded it, and spread it out on a very large table. Between my three year old and older kids, my middle-aged husband, me, and my parents, we have at least one representative from every age group.

I plan to take it all in, enjoy it, hopefully receive insights and hindsights. Inspiration and direction.

As my daughter walked down the aisle after receiving her diploma to the beat of live African drum music, complete with costumed dancers (what do you expect from an arts college? It sure beat Pomp and Circumstance), I beamed.

I wept.

I am overjoyed even in difficulty.

I am glad to be alive.
Left to right: My mom, dad, Annie, me, husband Luigi behind me, Jolene to my left, Alex, then Amy Rose
in front. Geoffrey and Ben are not in the picture this time.