Monday, December 29, 2008

Some Belated Christmas Cheer!




Sing hey sing hey, for its Christmas day
twine mistletoe and holly
Where in winter snows
and friendships grow
...so lets all be jolly!

Here are some pictures to share what we have been doing for the past Month.


























Friday, December 26, 2008

Song Arround the World..."Stand By Me" & "One Love"

These are so beautiful.
...and very healing to hear.
...and so needed.



Friday, December 12, 2008

Jacky Frost in Texas!!!...can you belive it?


It snowed here in East Texas. Man it was so beautiful!!!!



Jacky Frost-Laura E. Richards...I added Maxx into the fun

Jacky Frost, Jacky Frost,
Came in the night;
Left the meadows that he crossed
All gleaming white.
Painted with his silver brush
Every windowpane;
Kissed the leaves and made them blush
Blush and blush again.

Jacky Frost, Jacky Frost,
Crept around the house,
Sly as a silver fox,
Still as a mouse
Out little Maxxie came,
Blushing like a rose;
Up jumped Jacky Frost,
And pinched his little nose.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving with Little Boys



Maxx and lil Cliff Joyfully Ringing!

Maxx and I are in Texas spending some time of rest and spending the holidays with family.
The weather is beautiful! It is a glorious day!


Trying to herd the little boys to bed.


We had Thanksgiving at G.G.'s (Great Grandmother's) in Hillsboro.
We drove over the hills of central Texas and through the woods of east Texas to get there.


I am thankful for my family, and for the joy that little boys have about EVERYthing.
I am thankful for Texas weather, and dandelions in late autumn.
I am thankful for friends and loved ones far away.
I am thankful for the pie sampler plate and laughing with my sister.
I am thankful for the fast pace and really thankful for the slow pace.
I am thankful for hearing about a friend's first winter with snow.
I am thankful for funny little stuffed monsters and friends that will be there for you.
I am thankful for homemade.
I am thankful for spending this Thanksgiving with my Grandmother...it has been 5 years.
I am thankful...

Maxx and lil Cliff blowing dandelions





Thursday, November 20, 2008

Jane Love Back

Everyone who knows me gets to know and feel my goal for unconditional love. I have so much to give and am greatful for every person and relationship I encounter. There is so much to learn and entertainment from one another.


This past week I encountered a mirror of love, and will be forever greatful to my dear friends, my new friends, my peers, my fellow team members, and my family.


Personally, I have retreated to the cave. I am in search for truth, and the beauty in this outcome. I have nothing but love for my family and only want the best. Know that mother and cub are doing well and are resting. I will not be here as often, but will update weekly.

Love, Jane

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Autumn Morning and Updates



Maxx and I went on a walk this autumn morning and enjoyed the crisp cold air. We played in the leaves and found 4 new rocks and one of the biggest leaves we have gathered yet. Then came home to our home made turkey chili and cornbread we had started before we headed out.

Quick updates: These weeks have been full and fast. We had our first Parent/Teacher conference with Miss Donkel. Maxx had raving reviews...and it was very beautiful to hear her describe our lover and how his days go at school. So proud. Playdate with a friend. Crafting our fingers away helping with things that will be for sale at the holiday fair. This past Friday evening we joined several classes for the autumn martinmas lantern walk. We watched a beautiful puppet play and then walked and sang songs arround the school. That was fun. Maxx has been helping me prepare many soups (potato, rainbow soup, pinto bean soup, lentil and garbanzo bean soup, and chili is what we have so far) that we are storing in the freezer for the upcoming cold days. Thanksgiving is just around the bend and I am in the deepths of food retail preperations for the big eating holidays that are on there way. School, work, and Miss Shannon...we are enjoying this autumn and packing it full. Today the signs of a new season... old man winter sprinkled snow on us, with more to come this week.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Birthday, Sister!!!


Hey, Happy Birthday, Sister...
As we observe your birthday today,
Your yummy cake and gifts don't matter much.
These common things aren't really you,
Ribbons, paper hats and such.

We celebrate a Beauty who
Brings love & happiness to everyone,
Someone who gives more than she gets,
And fills our lives with joy and fun.
So Happy Birthday, Deana, and maanny moooore!

We hope you make it to three hundred and two,
Because we cannot even dream
What life would be like without you.

I hope you have one magnificent day, dear sister!!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Hope


I have heard so much about hope and change for the past 2 years...and then in the past few days it has heightened. Not to be negative...but how sad that so many have to see this in a politician's campaign-it was great marketing. How beautifully spoken and what amazing words this politician has.

Personally not a political fan...right nor left are the answer...and would be surprised if through policy there would truly be change.

One thing I have noticed is you would think it is the winter holiday season already...with how nice my fellows have been. How amazing it would be if everyone could keep this spirit...no matter where you got your spark.
I still have hope in humanity.
In this uplifting spirit, I see...
...is what gives me hope.

Hope
**by Emily Dickinson

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune--without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Enjoying Flowers!

Thank you, Kurt!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Our Jack 'O Lanterns 2008


Thank you Miss Shannon for your help in activity and creativity.
...and thank you to the neighbor who was selling the organic pumpkins from your pumpkin farm in Central, IL (
How cool it was to stubble across you)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The Busy Bumble Bee

Here is the costume. This was from our first event.
We have a quite a few more this week.




...and the start of mine and Kurt's

Friday, October 24, 2008

BzzzzzzTest Drive



Today we did a test drive in the busy bumble bee costume. I was checking for size and mobility.
So far so good...lost a seam and got it back together. Now to finish the antenna, and wings. Our first occasion to wear it is tomorrow at a fun spooky pot luck. Then he will be a busy bumble bee for sure...Daddy's work party is Tuesday night, then Hallo'een assembly at school, and trick or treating around the neighborhood on Friday.

Okay gotta get back to the costume making...I've got mine and Kurt's in the works too...and to figure out a dish to take for this pot luck. Whew.. Busy? An understatement.

In the Light of Hope and Gratitude We Walk


Earlier this evening Maxx, Allison, Shannon and I met many others at Uncommon Ground to light the handmade lanterns and begin our gratitude walk. It was magical. Many said they came to see the little ones and how important it is to see their awww and how amazing that is. There was a story about a lantern told and then songs began as we walked our 3 blocks to the garden. It was so beautiful to see those lanterns in the dark and enjoy the night in a magical place. How grateful I am to be able to give and have this experience with my beautiful son and my amazing friends who rekindle my spark every day.


At times our own light goes out
And is rekindled by a spark from
Another person Each of us has cause to think
With deep gratitude to those
Who have lighted the fire with in us
-Albert Schwitzer


Above is Maxx's lantern as he is walking around the dark garden. Beautiful.


I walk with my little lantern,
My lantern walks with me
In heaven, the stars are shining!
On earth, my lantern shines too.
In darkest night, it guides my way
Glow little lantern glow.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Ribbon for the Sophia's Garden


There has been wind that the University is not going to develop this piece of land the garden is on after all. Something about the development has been canceled. So instead of a new building or to keep the garden they are going to use this beautiful space as a staging ground for large construction equipment for the demolition of the building just to the east of the garden.

With this news has come some activism from not only the school, but the entire surrounding community and students of the University. We have joined in.

One of the University students came up with the idea to tie a ribbon on the fence to be your voice. Today we tied our ribbons.
Thursday is a lantern walk from the Uncommon Ground to the garden...starts at 6pm if anyone wants to join us.


Viva la Sophia's Garden!!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Wet Day, YAY!!!




It is wonderful how your little one can change how you are seeing the day.

Me: "Awww man, it is raining."

In my head: In and out...wet and dry...the buses will be crowded...my hair will be wet...I need to invest in some rain boots...don't forget the umbrella...aww the umbrella...up and down...it is cold today too...cold and wet...pack extra clothes and socks for Maxx...

Maxx: "Cool! I can wear my puddle boots to school! Don't forget to pack an extra pair of Saaahhh-Oxx. Let's go, Moam!"

Me: "Cool! Let's go get wet!"

Maxx: "Yeah!"

He embraces every thing and has so much fun. Me too!





Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lucky me!


Today I came home and had one beautiful surprise! No special reason, just because Kurt wanted to.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Autumn in Sophia's Garden



Since we have started school, I have or I should say, we have fallen in love with Sophia's garden. It won't be long until the garden will be gone from this space...so sad...so we are taking in as much as time here as we can.



Slowing down and not just hustling by...
taking a moment to walk threw,
balance on the bed logs,
sitting in the grass,
scream after a big grass hopper we were watching jumps to show us how high he can go,
a busy bee won't leave us alone while we are slurping an orange,
soaking up the rays of the sun,
swaying in the wind,
stomping in the mud wearing our Wellies (Maxx calls them puddle boots),
playing hide and seek,
Believing for a moment we are in the country running through the fields, and not downtown Chicago

The empty lot and space was so graciously open to Maxx's school and the surrounding community many years ago...knowing that the University would expand and use this piece of land. As you walk around the garden, you see how much love has been put in to this amazing oasis in the city. Art work has been etched & painted, wooden gazebos and fences have been built by the older children in the school, flower, herbs, vegetables, fruit, trees, shrubs, and grasses are all growing so happily. There are bees, grasshoppers, lady bugs and worms that are in living out their fairy tale and helping to create fairy tales for Maxx.

November 1st is the said day of construction starting. We just have 2 more weeks and we will continue our moments until the restricted signs go up. I am going to try and capture as many photos as I can to remember these short moments that an amazing garden entered our lives.




Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Mr. Squirrel


Today en route to the EL train after a day at school, I spotted a squirrel harvesting his goods for later. There was an apartment that had their balcony decorated for the autumn with corn stalks and pumpkins...and this little guy was going to town. This squirrel had managed to wrestle the stalk so a corn was at perfect height for him to sit on this chair and work. Talk about a true pure bread American rodent. We watched as he would take a few kernels and then run on the brick ledge running along the outside of the building to a tree. Hop down dig a hole put the kernels in cover it...then head back. I thought he was really brave to do this while kids and parents hustled by. We watched for a good 15 minutes before a dog came by and spooked him into hiding. Maxx got so tickled at all the action.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Harvest Time/Michaelmas



Maxx is singing this amazing song he learned at school and we sang it as a community at the Harvest Festival.

This is my trunk, I'm a tall tall tree
in summer the wind blows through me
I wave, I wave

This is my trunk, I'm a tall tall tree
in autumn apples they grow on me
they fall, they fall

This is my trunk, I'm a tall tall tree
in winter the snow falls on me
I shiver, I shiver

This is my trunk, I'm a tall tall tree
in spring the leaves bloom on me
they bloom, they bloom.



These past few weeks we have been celebrating the harvest. It is just amazing, watching the world through four year old eyes. Maxx loves to get a hand full of leaves, throw them up in the air and watch as they dance there way to the ground. We have seen squirrels gathering nuts getting ready for the winter. On our walks we have enjoyed and studied the trees that still have leaves, knowing it won't be long until these trees will be bare. On the way home from the library we crunched the leaves that had fallen onto the sidewalk.

In celebration this week we went to Maxx's school for the Harvest Festival and had a blast. We came home a dirty mess. Looking at my pictures, I was more into the festival myself than capturing it with pictures. Miss Allison joined us and we helped the school replant some of the the Sophia garden, ate fresh picked apples, homemade apple cake Maxx had made in class, sang, danced, made an autumn craft out of grapevine, leaves, feathers, and tufts of wool... and really enjoyed this beautiful day.

"Autumn is a second spring, when every leaf is a flower."
- Albert Comus

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Time Flys When You Are Having Fun

Here in Chicago we have had some amazing weather after all that rain. 70s with sunshine!
Wow! That was a lot of rain! We got some of Icke's devilishness here in the Midwest.
The family down in Texas are still in clean up mode while some are still waiting for the lights to come on. Everyone is safe and sound which is the best part.

There has been a lot of living these days. I am having the hardest time keeping the undies washed and balancing the demands of this school schedule. My basket feels totally turned over and there is so much going on, but it all just too much fun and we are loving it.

Kurt has gotten the nighttime rhythm down. I am very proud of my lions. They have had the biggest adjustment with this new PreK/EC gig and they are becoming pros. I think Maxx could run the C.T.A. he has the schedule tuned in...and while he is playing with his trains his memory recalls all of the commuting announcements word for word. I am amazed with his memory.

Miss Shannon was called upon for a play date of cookie baking and dog walking. Maxx had a blast enjoy the pictures of loving Abby and Lucy...some of the sweetest dogs in the whole world and we love Miss Shannon. Thank you Shannon, you made Maxx's week, mine too!!!

Maxx and Abby sharing some lov'n

Lucy's turn...Lucy smiles when you pet and love on her it is the greatest!

The dog walk...


Picture day is tomorrow, our four year old check up is Friday, and the Harvest Festival is this weekend...and to know that some do this with two and three cubs...appreciation and admiration...

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Be Careful Guys, It's a Lake Out dere!!!

It is so hard to just sit back and watch. Hoping everything is going okay. Some of our family live in the Houston, Texas area and were greatly affected by Ike. It was nerve racking when we got just voice mail, but we did make contact after a few short minutes. Maxx told Grommy and Pah-Pah all about school and then before he was finished with his conversation he said, "...be careful guys, it's a lake out dere! I love you."

We are thinking about our family stuck in sticky hot humidity without AC and electricity.
Glad everyone is good and I hope you get put back together quickly.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Quill of a Day!!

Today, Maxx had a rough morning due to our perfect rhythm being... well, "rocked".
The C.T.A. was on top of there game and the trains and buses were running smooth today.
Too smooth!

We ended up at school 20 minutes early and Maxx had some time to play with his new friends, free style. It was a beautiful morning and we had fun watching him play.
SLAP!!!
Maxx was down. He fell and scraped his knee. The school doors were opened...

Kurt wisked him off to wash up. He then was good and slipped into his slippers, and ran into the class room just like the past two perfect mornings. Kurt and I were out the door and headed to get some coffee... when we heard..."Mommy! Daddy!" We looked back and there Maxx was running out the main door. "I don't want to go to school, today!", he said. He then began to cry and lost his little mind...
He screamed and his head began to spin and the legs like little hammers kicking my shins, knees, and thighs while I am picking him up...he becomes limp, not wanting to be picked up. Something totally took over my child.

(Where did Maxx go? Who is THIS wild child? ...no, my Maxx is sweet and perfect and the easy kid...you know the cool little man...I don't know who this little person is.)

Oh my goodness, the scene, the work out, we were now in shoes we had never worn before. He was a mess to get back in that classroom door.

Whew...with the help of a grab from Miss Donkel, ( she got the screaming limp kicker...so sorry!!!) and the door shutting. Maxx was in!

Brows wiped...
Kurt and I back in route for coffee. We could hear Maxx screaming out the window, "Help me! Help me! I don't want to go to school!" Persistent, he is. Kurt and I kept walking in disbelief and knowing he was going to have another amazing school day.

While waiting on Maxx to get out of school Miss Allison and I met up and landed at the Swedish Bakery for a breakfast treat and coffee. Allison then picked out something super special just for Maxx.


What is it?

A porcupine!!! Awwwwwwwww How CUTE!!!
YUM!!!!


What an awesome treat, to see Miss Allison at the end of a beautiful school day, AND enjoy a chocolaty- cakey- and check out the almond quills!!!! A Porcupine delight!!!! Thank you for making our day!!

We asked how his day at school was..."It was good!" He then began to talk about going tomorrow and how he could not wait. (DOH!!! Little did he know... he has a four day break before the next day of school.)

On the way home he complained of his throat hurting. UH OH!!! (He did mention it last night...but I thought he was just trying to get out of eating dinner...and "crying wolf", like the little smarty pants he is...)
Little Mister Cranky Pants...might be coming down with a cold bug...

...maybe that explains the out his mind, out of control, slightly possessed kid I was dealing with earlier...in combo with new hair cut, breakfast refusal, new routine, excitement, newness, newness, and more newness.

...a "quill" of a day!!!