From Diane Setterfield's The Thirteenth Tale

People disappear when they die. Their voices, their laughter, the warmth of their breath. Their flesh. Eventually their bones. All living mempry of them ceases. This is both dreadful and natural. Yet for some there is an exception to this annihilation. For in the books they write they continut to exist. We can rediscover them. Their humour, their tone of voice, their moods. Through the written word they can anger you or make you happy. They can comfort you. They can perplex you. They can alter you. All this, even though they are dead. Like flies in amber, like corpses frozen in ice, that which according to the laws of nature should pass away is, by the miracle of ink on paper, preserved. It is a kind of magic.

--Diane Setterfield

Monday, October 10, 2011

Quibbler September 2011 - with pictures at the end

August and September have kind of melded in my mind. It's hard to know where one stops and the other begins...

Back in August Jaedyn and I went to Story time at the library and had so much fun that we finally went to another library and got a library card. The library system here is different than I'm used to. Each city has it's own library. Our subdivision is 'unincorporated' so we have to pay to get a library card at our local library. The next city over has no fee, so we are going there. In six months we can apply for a Tex Share card that is good at other libraries. ( This week alone I've read two novels and a handful of children's books... it's SO great to have a library again!)

Jaedyn is also into dancing. She boogies during our Music Time each week, doing the traditional toddler be-bop, but when she is bored she will sometimes do 'ballet'. This usually just consists of her balancing on one leg while she holds the other one out to the side. Like an arabesque... kinda. She has also been known to do yoga; balancing on one leg while the other foot is resting beside her knee.
The Activity Day girls (ages 8 &9) that I work with for church were asked to sing at a baptism for all the youth who had turned 8 that month. Jaedyn and I went to support them and then watched as girls from our ward (congregation) were baptized. Jaedyn watched with wide eyes. After the second baptism she turned to me and said “she went under the water!” I told her that's how we do baptisms and she told me she did not want to get baptized. Even after the girl was dressed and we all went to another room to see her set apart as a member of our church, Jaedyn kept telling me how that girl was all wet because she went all the way under the water.
We had the Garofolo's over for Family Home Evening and I read Jaedyn and Sophia a story. When the main character made a good choice they put their thumbs up, when he made a bad choice they put their thumbs down. Even since then we have discussed good choices and bad choices. Jaedyn gets a thumbs up for her good choices and when I say, “Oh, that's a bad choice” she gives me a thumbs down and, usually, stops the offending action. It's brilliant! It also makes reading the scriptures more engaging for her. I read a bit and ask her if the character made a good choice or a bad choice. We discuss it and she remembers the stories.
We had an activity for my Activity Day girls with a Zumba instructor. It was so fun! I really miss the Zumba class I took at the YMCA in Bellevue. It was our biggest turn out, we have 20 girls in our group and about 15 showed up. Jaedyn and I were in the hall getting our juice ready for the smoothies we had as a snack when the gym door opened right onto her bare foot. Her big toe was scraped and bleeding at the knuckle and a huge blood blister popped up at the end of her toe. She was a little hysterical. We got her cleaned up as best we could and she has been in socks and shoes since then. The socks hurt her toe, but she refused to have a band-aid. It was the weirdest thing. Finally I pinned her down, after she stubbed hat toe again, and wrestled a band-aid onto her. She liked it fine after that and wore it under her sock. When it came off she didn't want another one and has refused every band-aid since then.

I have been running. I started at the end of August. A group of, ridiculously skinny and equally ridiculously sweet, girls from church get together and invited me to join them. The third Saturday of September we ran a 5K. It's a re-occurring race so we plan to run it again next month, if we are not doing a mini triathlon. I was sick the night before, I even threw up, and was feeling wobbly right up until we started running. I was not in top form, but Stacy ran at my slower pace and we finished in 34:47 minutes. I placed 142 out of 189, yikes!, and averaged an 11.13 minute mile walk/ run. Seeing the scores has definitely motivated me to do better next time. It was tons of fun! (Currently I run 4 or 5 times a week and each run is either a 5K or just under, depending on the route)
I got home from the 5K and showered and we all dashed to Fiona's birthday party. It was her mom's actual birthday, but she opted to share the day and have her little one's party. We got there late, but Jaedyn got right into eating cupcakes and playing outside with all the kids. She would come back in for water or other candies (if she could sneak them, or find a gullible adult) and eventually found herself with a second cupcake! She ran outside with it and a few minutes later was bawling. She had tripped over the door frame of the Playskool house outside and biffed it. Her cupcake also biffed it. She is still talking about how she tripped and her cupcake was smashed and ruined.
    We are getting a new church building sometime in October. It's right across the main street outside our subdivision, so close we could walk to church! Scott was asked to go and do a special training on the sound system in the new building. I tagged along and got to see the insides before anyone else. It's bigger than the chapel we currently meet in and beautiful. We got to poke around before and after the training (everything is automated so you just turn the system on and plug in a mike if you need it) and we even went into the attic. Way cool! Scott has the pictures we took. Hmm, I'll have to get those some day.
The Saints United Choir came to town and we got tickets to go to a show. Our neighbors were going to come too, but fell through at the last moment. Their loss! It was amazing! Gladys Knight directed the choir and sang to us and gave her testimony in a little missionary devotional. It was beautiful and Scott got to shake her hand as she left. That's cool.
The next weekend Scott went with the scouts on a camp out. He took his phone and his laptop and had grand plans to play games all night long. Some of the other campers / leaders gave him grief for not leaving all technology at home. He was surprised when everyone turned in about 10PM. He was expecting the boys to stay up late, swapping manly stories or something. But he got to talking with some of the dads and had a really great time playing mind games with one of them. He came home so excited that this other dad thinks like he does and plays the same 'what-if' games he plays in his head. They talked until 4 in the morning! Then he dutifully logged on to his game. When he saw no one else on, he logged off and went to sleep.
While that was going on, Jaedyn and I went to the house of one of the dads Scott was talking to (not the similar thinker...). Stephanie, his wife, and I made lumpias (Filipino egg rolls) and ate dinner while Jaedyn played with her kids. Actually we just made the lumpia filling. She is half Filipinoor tisae, and just knew the recipe... so I wrote down while we cooked. Then we watched Gigi while we waited for the meat mixture to drain. It was a really fun evening. I left with ½ a gallon zip lock of lumpia filling and some lumpia wraps. I eventually wrapped them at home and fried them. They were SO GOOD! I used about half the filling, so I just need to get more wraps and we can eat it again. Yum!

The Zumba instructor that taught our Activity Day girls offers free classes in her garage. When I found out I jumped on that bandwagon. I went with Jaedyn, Scott was waking up with the scouts at the campground, and Zumba-ed. She watched TV and got bored and came out and Zumba-ed with us. This instructor is different from the gal I'm used to and her steps are different, even on songs I knew. They were simpler and a little slower and I missed my peppy, enthusiastic instructor from Washington. It's fun to shake it, even if the steps are a little more conservative and simple. Afterward we talked about photography and I was inspired to take more pictures and learn more about the camera I got for Christmas.
That night Jaedyn and I went to the General Relief Society Meeting Broadcast. It was a great little meeting and Jaedyn did really really well. We socialized before hand and ate dinner at the potluck. Then we sat with friends and Jaedyn 'braided' the hair of the mom that sat next to me. She has been braiding my hair too and putting it into ponytails and brushing my scalp raw. Usually she just brushes and then gather up a handful of hair and smooths it in her hand saying “I'm braiding your hair.” It's really cute.

She is also very interested when I put on makeup. She likes to watch, actively, grabbing brushes and compacts that I'm not using.
More than once we have gone to playgroups or other social events with her cheeks painted with concealer or eyeshadow or blush. I wonder where she gets it...

We have been potty training and Jaedyn has been working the system. She got to a point where she was not interested in the current reward, a candy, and will carry it around or decorate the house with it. “Awl ssave it for two marrow”, she says with her hand held up to stop me. I don't know what she is stopping me from, but when she really means it, she will tell it to you with her hand out in a 'stop' gesture. That's her sign language for 'emphasis'. What a change this new phrase is.
She used to entertain crowds at church with the phrase “There'ss candy at the sstor”.
Usually when we tell her it's 'prayer time' she folds her arms and either listens quietly at church or starts saying a prayer of her own; if we are ready or not. We don't tell her what to say, she just goes. Eventually we realized that her prayers were getting a little repetitious.
Dear Heav'ly Fath'r, thank you fo'our food, thank you fo' mommy and daddy take me to th' differnet park, thank you Baloo and Jesseyss, name of Jessus Chrisst, Amen.”
It was cute, but we have other things to be grateful for and other things to ask for (although it's clever that she thanks Heavenly Father in advance for us taking her to the park... and a new one at that!). Once Scott tried prompting her. “Thanks for our good sleeps” turned into something funny that we meant to write down. I was probably something like: Thanks for no sleep”. We cracked up! Now I just mention what I'd like her to add to her prayer and she fits it all in there by herself.
We sure think she's a cutie.

I went to tuck her in one night and she talked to me in a dream. “A pancake” she said and started singing a little song.

In other news, our neighbor gave us an air compressor! Wow. She had it sitting around and didn't want it. I just need to find some cheap heads and I've got myself a nail gun! I can do all sorts of projects with a nail gun! We could even replace our fence. The owner has agreed to reimburse us for parts if we replace the fence for him. Our neighbors have agreed to come out and help when we do it.
Until then I'm just doing small crafts, inside. Crafts like meal planning and sign making. Well meal planning is not a craft, but the frame and exchangeable background sure felt like crafting when I put it together. The signs take more work. I have to cut them and sand them and then paint them and then sand them again to get the weathered look that's 'in' these days. The problem is that the perfect time to do all that is during nap time, but my 'work spot' is on the patio right below her bedroom window. Jaedyn has never failed to wake up in the middle of a nap because I turned on the saw or sander. Sigh. But she has helped me paint some washes onto some boards and I'm excited to see how they turn out.
I also made a door, um, thing. Not a wreath.. but it hangs from the random nail in our door and says “welcome”.

Scott and I left Jaedyn with a fun babysitter and drove to San Antonio to visit the temple there. It's beautiful and sits at the top of a hill, rather grand as you drive around the corner and see the tiny valley before you and the temple on a hill at the other side. We had a fun time, even though it was a really quick trip. We drove through some rain, real Texas rain. The kind where you have to slow down to 30mph on the freeway because you can't see. Unfortunately our neighborhood didn't get any, just big clouds and lots of wind. (We did get rain all last night and most of today though).

The last day of the month I got together with some girlfriends to celebrate a birthday. We had a tiny luncheon at the hostess' house and even though the food was yummy and the conversations fun (we laughed about seeing us running partners with makeup and real clothes on) my favorite part was when we sat down and all told the birthday girl why we loved her. It was such a simple sweet thing to do but it was very fun.

Jaedyn has really gotten the hang of riding her tricycle and has been peddling around the block, to the mailbox and even to the park and back. She has a cute kitty helmet she wears and has fun with her new found independence. Sometimes trucks block the driveways, we have taught her that they are ob-stickles. We go around them. Jaedyn got a cool toy in September. We have borrowed, indefinably, a bike attachment thing. Jaedyn trikes up a storm, but now we can all go on 'fast' bike rides out of the neighborhood. Jaedyn and I were taking a walk to the park and Scott came over to our friends who live across the street from the park and picked up the Instep. We couldn't get it home in our car, so we attached it to Jaedyn's tricycle and she pulled it home. I'm just kicking myself that I didn't get a picture. It was precious! We have been biking on short trips at night, to wear her down, but Labor Day we biked to the Old Settler's Park( about 4 miles away), played for a few hours and biked back. That night when I went running, I felt so good; I could have run, without stopping, the whole 5K!
So September was a good enough month. Scott is still looking for a job and I am still trying to set up a site for Bountiful Baskets in Austin. Jaedyn is still trying to get candy and dessert before each meal. You know, the usual.

That's about all...We love ya! ~ the Quigleys

Biking to park for Labor Day.

Evidence Jaedyn has been in the room. Fly swatter on the window sill; Candy on the side table; spoon tucked into the drawer handle.

Crafting for a special needs non profit school using wood from my pile; menu planning, freezer / healthy meals.

Fiona's birthday party

Fancy hair-dos and “watching” me put on makeup.

Cleaning at Novie and Fiona's: I helped our friends, the Werneking's, clean up for their dad's return. He had been away for 9 months! We tidied the playroom and did an office makeover as well as hanging nick knacks around the house.

The Peppers tried to put out another crop and withered, pumpkins are still going strong, wind storms have knocked over my plants and my tidy scrap wood pile.

My 5K running partners.

Cooking has been hit or miss this month, sometimes at the same time. Perfectly steamed sweet potato and charred potatoes from dinner one night. Not pictured: The nachos that caught fire and melted the silicon; perfect and delicious lumpias and curry.

Waffles for breakfast... I hope she doesn't think all waffles are topped with Ice cream and sprinkles.