Autumn Cleaning
Family Matters, Pt 1

It’s 7:25 am, I’ve just finished going over Maki’s Spanish vocabulary test for his test today, while he ate his cereal. I marvel at his adolescent memory skills. Were we really all like that once upon a time?

Here is the continuation of our individual family updates that I couldn’t finish last night.

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Earlier this week, we finally took Vernon’s big computer monitor out of the garage and set it up for Maki in the office. (I set it up for me too, but already he’s getting more use out of it.)  I’d promised for some time that we’d get him the student subscription to Creative Cloud, with the idea that if we wants to spend time on the computer on school nights, he has to be learning a valuable skill. Illustrator was his first interest, but he is already picking his way through Photoshop. I have a feeling he will forgo his weekend video game rights to spend more time manipulating images and working on his “logo.’  For me, its exciting to watch the wheels of his mind click in.

In the picture above, Maki is wearing one of his dad’s tee-shirts.  There are a few things he has discovered in his dad’s closet (most things are packed away) which quickly become favorites. The thing is…they are starting to fit him. I think Maki gets better use out of them than Vernon would anymore.

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Hulk Hogan with a kitten head. Hmmm… time well spent, I’m sure.

Justine is currently celebrating her stint as the Kindergarten Star of the Week.

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Every child will have  a week as the Star, where they get to head the line each day and share some personal details with their classmates. The parents sign them up in advance, but they don’t need to know that. Here is Justine’s special homework:

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“I want to be an actress when I grow up and my favorite song is “Style” but Taylor Swift and I have the bestest brother.”

My Family: “A picture of when my dad comes home from hospital (with imaginary pet snake.)”

How Would I Make the World a Better Place? “Picking up papers from someone who drops them.”

One wish: “That I could catch a butterfly and keep it in my room.”

 

As for myself, I’m always updating.  Yesterday I checked out an audio book at the library by Mesa Verde to keep me company on the commute. It was “The Fault in Our Stars” by John Green. It had been on my radar for awhile, especially as a movie was made, but come on…its just young adult fiction. I only picked it up for some lighthearted fun, but a few miles into my drive, tears were already streaming. It wasn’t sad yet, it was just so well written from a teenager’s point of view. This is exactly the book I would have loved in High School had it been written then. It didn’t take me long to realize what it was touching in me is the young love cell that never completely goes away. I let myself cry, realizing it was a surprise opportunity to mourn something…ROMANCE.  If I’m sobbing in the first chapter of teen fiction, of all things, I know something real is happening. So I embrace it and it passes through.

I think mourning happens a little at a time, not all at once like we think it is supposed to. My friend Sandy, herself a widow, often tells me that grief should be treated like a champagne bottle.  If all the bubbles were to come out at once, the glass would explode and make a huge mess. Instead, the air is meant to be released slowly, a little at a time, gently sipped and experienced in moments as long as the champagne lasts.

 

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Autumn Cleaning
Family Matters, Pt 1