There’s something so comforting about Carol Burnett.

She’s familiar somehow, even though it was my mom and dad who grew up with her. I think what I love most about watching her is that she is not ever afraid to laugh at herself. She balances her professionalism with the ability to enjoy the moment, even if that moment is Tim Conway derailing a Mama’s family skit.

Every once in awhile, as right now, I watch one of The Carol Burnett Show episodes on DVD (a Christmas gift from my parents). Classic television. I love it.

Last year, unexercised, full of coffee and sugar, and generally not tending to my body-mind relationship, I would have found this past week extremely stressful.  It’s been one of those weeks—a recalled part for my RAV 4 which required going to the shop, an OB appointment, a broken dryer, a trio of illnesses (Eric with sniffles, a cold/flu for me, and now a cold/flu for Katie), finishing taxes, etc. We came up for air a couple of times, but mostly we’ve had to deal with all the little things that sometimes pile up and make life feel a bit like a hurdle course. At least a couple of these items probably would have cost me a bit of sleep and worry last year.

It is humbling and eye-opening to realize how much exercise and a healthier diet can help me to keep a more balanced and light perspective.

I found myself actually laughing about the dryer and being so grateful it wasn’t the washing machine again.

The recalled part for the RAV 4 led me to take my car in, which gave me the chance to get a routine maintenance service I needed and just in time for our spring road trip. Now I know we’ll be safer on the road.

And we’re getting a tax refund…

Nothing is wonderful about being sick, except we are thankful that a cold/flu is all it is. I actually had a chance to rest in the afternoon on both days this past weekend (thanks to my mom and Bill), and a little time to nap and read magazines on the weekend in the middle of the day (which I rarely do!) was a bit of a treat even if I was stuffy and coughing.

Always a silver lining…

And I am so grateful for all the goodness this last week:

IMG_7919 IMG_7922

My tree climbing children



Disneyland with my aunt and cousin and his babies (whom I also call cousins)



Snow White’s bridge





Our finished Kandinsky circles from last week



On Friday, we missed music class and our afternoon art. It was largely a couch and movie day. But on Sunday we were able to do a little project exploring warm and cool colors. I follow an art teacher on Pinterest: Kathy Barbaro pinned the inspiration for this project originally. I had to modify it a bit in order to make it accessible especially for Eric. The kiddos had fun with it. Right after we got done, I felt tired again and took a doze on the couch…but we were glad to get a piece done this week!



Sponging on the cool color layer over their stencils


The basic idea was to paint a layer of warm colors, let it dry, cover part of it with a stencil/solid shape (which I helped to cut out), and sponge cool colors over the whole canvas. Eric’s apple and Katie’s fairy were revealed.


And Katie is loving Miss Regina’s Homeschool Choir! I am so thankful for the time and passion Regina gives to this beautiful group of kiddos. When Bill and I first talked about homeschooling, we had this dream of finding people in our lives who could share their deepest talents and passions with our Katie and Eric. It is amazing to see this wish and ideal coming to fruition now. When Regina talks about music and teaches the children, there is such love and knowledge in her voice. Katie has been talking all week about how much she loves choir and learning with Regina. I am so grateful for the time Regina puts into this—her volunteered time—and the excitement she gives to the kiddos. Nothing is more powerful than hearing someone share something that person is truly passionate about. I am thankful that Katie is absorbing that kind of vitality from this fellow homeschooling mom, and I am equally grateful that Regina has welcomed us all so lovingly into her life and home.

Oh my goodness! As I am writing this—still watching Carol Burnett—a guest just came on her show. MAGGIE SMITH!! A young 1970s Maggie Smith. My Dowager Countess from Downton Abbey! What?!?!? This is surreal!

But back to the blog…

For whatever stressors this week may have had, it also had its joys and rediscoveries: cups and cups of homemade iced green tea, Simon & Garfunkel, Joni Mitchell, The Beatles, and Carole King. Listening to music and watching old historical footage (old concerts as well as things like the Wright Brothers) with Bill and the kiddos after dinner, late nights of laughter and cuddles, reaching 128.9 pounds this week (started in my low to mid 160s back in June 2012), some exciting new art supplies, juicing, vegetarian meals full of beautiful vegetables, an afternoon run (I usually go in the morning, so this was a revelation) after finally feelings my lungs were clear, my dad who came over to help today so that Katie could rest and I could get Eric to gymnastics, burning candles, filled bird feeders, some smooth homeschool days despite other life responsibilities and needs, and connections with so many others this week…

Now to get Katie on the mend! We’ve got a fun family date planned for this week, and I want her to feel able to enjoy herself. I think we’ll have a quiet (hopefully rainy) day tomorrow to get our school work done and rest and putz around a bit!