Saturday, May 24, 2008

The Real Reason

Blogging has been a rare activity for me over the last few months, and I blame this young lady entirely:

Yes, it's true! We have another girl on the way. She should be here by mid-October. I'll have to come up with a better blog title than "my daughter" for our oldest child now.

The first trimester was a most unproductive time for me, aside from growing a healthy baby, of course. Thus the lack of blogging. If you could have seen my house, you would know that it was an unproductive time for cleaning and house projects of any kind as well. Now we're well into the second trimester, morning sickness has subsided, energy has returned, the weather is brighter and warmer, and we know the baby's gender,'s time to get ready! We are very excited.

Friday, May 23, 2008

There's No Place Like Home

Heidi has a post up about her love for Kansas. It makes my heart ache. I miss the Midwest! And she's right, the beauty there is very different than the beauty elsewhere. Here in the Pacific Northwest, which is known for its natural beauty, we have stunning views of majestic mountains, open water, islands, and magnificent forests. Even the cityscapes are attractive. It seems that our early city planners and builders took great care in incorporating urban development into the idyllic natural setting. (They did not take such great care in planning traffic flow through and around those urban developments, but win some, you lose some.) It's beautiful here.

But the Midwest...oh, I just miss it. So calm and peaceful, so untouched compared to our country's coastlines. I think my favorite part of Heidi's pictures is the gravel road (or driveway). It brought back so many memories - trivial memories, really, just nostalgia, but somehow still so powerful. I remember that we had to drive with the windows up over gravel roads on dry days, because the dust was too overwhelming to drive with the windows down. And if we encountered another car approaching a bridge on a gravel road, we had to pull over, because only one car could cross at a time. And drivers waved to other drivers on gravel roads, no matter whether they knew each other. Paved country roads were called blacktops, to differentiate them from the gravel roads. I lived on the Thompsonville blacktop.

We grew tomatoes and corn fit for kings. We took wild roses and blackberries for granted. We breathed thick honeysuckle air all summer long (and now I find honeysuckle-scented products in bath product stores! Who knew anyone would try to bottle it?). We heard bullfrogs and crickets and owls all night. We tried to get the mockingbirds to imitate our own calls, unsuccessfully of course. And I didn't think about any of these things until I had left them behind.

Am I romanticizing life in the Midwest? Of course. It's where I grew up. It's a very nostalgic place for me. It is full of memories of the simplicity of childhood, of not having a schedule, of having few responsibilities and worries. Most people, I think, look back on their childhoods in this way. I just happened to leave the Midwest right before I left childhood, so my yearning for the one is muddled by nostalgia for the other. But I still miss it.

Thanks, Heidi, for the memories!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Before You Wake

My brother in Iraq sent this link. Please remember our military men and women in your prayers.