I told myself that today I would do Conversion Diary's 7 Quick Takes as a way of getting the old blog rolling again. So here are seven things going on in my life.
1. I have been keeping the iPod under my pillow at night. No, this is not so I can play Angry Birds while my husband is sleeping (*avoiding eye contact and whistling*), but so I can read scripture on the Kindle app before I get out of bed. Nothing too heavy, just five or ten minutes reading the Epistle of James. Have you read the Epistle of James lately? "Let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger, because the anger of man does not bring about the righteousness of God." If I could master that one sentence of behaviour, my life would be radically altered.
2. I continue to work on NaNoWriMo, but have had a major hiccup. I have been working on the novel for 45 minutes in the morning before the kids get up. That seems to be my most productive time of day for writing, even though it means getting out of bed at 5:45. But something about the writing process has started giving me migraines, with light splotches and blind spots in my vision. So far the vision problems have subsided if I sit in darkness for twenty minutes while the kids watch a movie, but the last two days I have not written at all because I did not want to bring on another one when it was time to take the kids to school. I had finally found a writing schedule that worked for me, so this is very discouraging. It feels like the ability to write keeps getting taken from me.
3. I have been hooked on Downton Abbey, thanks to Melissa Wiley and Wrath of Mom. Currently, I am stopped where Mary sabotages Edith's marriage to Sir Anthony - I just couldn't watch that much spite. I am too involved in the characters and then I get heartbroken. But in a few days I will not be able to suppress my longing to know what happened, and then I will watch again.
4. It is Veteran's Day today, and my girls plan to make cards for our next-door neighbor, whom they love, and who is a veteran of five military campaigns. If you have a neighbor with a similar history, a few moments of kids with construction paper and crayons may make a big difference in his or her day. Even if it's a day late.
5. Books I am reading: I finally bought a copy of Shusaku Endo's Silence, a book I have been wanting to read for ages. I read the preface and then I stopped, because I know it will be emotionally stark, and I want to read it courageously. November is probably not the time to do that; too many distractions.
Instead, I am reading our book club's selection of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, a young adult fantasy novel. So far, it's pretty good, though I have not reached the central mystery of the plot yet.
The kids and I continue to read aloud through Elliot and the Pixie Plot. They loved the first of the Elliot books, and are enjoying this one too, though a couple of confusing editing mistakes in chapter eight diminished our joy slightly. We read the book aloud at the dinner table before they finish dessert. Only the oldest two reliably listen, but I still count that a win.
6. We have finally settled into the husband's five-day-a-week work schedule and the girls' school schedule, but the result is that I get almost no time away from the children. Even my solitary work-out at the YMCA (which has free babysitting!) has been absent from my life this week because of my back injury (which is almost all healed up, thank you). I am a classic introvert who needs time alone, so this much constant company begins to tear me down. I desperately need a break from the kids, so the husband and I decided that a solo overnight trip would be a good thing for me in early December. I have never done this before (not since becoming a parent, anyway). I'm a little nervous. I think I will be going to the Cleveland area, but I haven't entirely settled that yet.
7. Once again, my in-laws are visiting for Thanksgiving and my mom-in-law insists that we eat our big meal at a restaurant (which she pays for). On the one hand, this is very generous and I love that there is no clean-up. On the other hand, this has happened so many years now that my kids don't really have a sense of what home Thanksgiving traditions are. There is also the added wrinkle that my mom-in-law respects my abilities as a housewife more when I cook (which she hates to do). When I don't cook, she tends to see only my catastrophic failures at tidiness (unlike her house, which is always tidy). So I am wondering if I should insist on a home meal next year. Your thoughts?
Aaaaaaand in the brief moments it took for me to write this post, the children knocked over a cup of cocoa on the bookshelf and now I have about twenty books to wipe down. Cheers.