{ I’m Meant for Little Things }

I find myself wallowing in the memory of a handful of recent conversations about motherhood, watching children fly away, and stepping reluctantly into “The Afternoon of Life.”

(That’s a book, given to me by my daughter. I groaned when I saw it, but it’s actually just right for me…and funny, too.)

So, just now I scrawled out a poem — with sappy tears streaming down my face– and my 20-year old son comes in, unaware of my poignant tears, to get something from this room.

“Don’t mind me,” I say. “I’m just writing poetry that makes me cry.”

“Your OWN poetry is making you cry?”

“Yes. I’ll read it to you when I’m done.” 

(Maybe. If you’re lucky.)

I’m Meant for Little Things

Big things? No, I’m meant for little things — 

I’m the tapper of  a traveling stream of a thousand text messages and heart emojis, a hundred “are you almost homes?” and “luv yous”

I’m the tiny-Lego-helmet-finder and the “Where’s my Wallet?” wizard 

 

Big things? No, little things —

 

I’m the finger-mender of the glove that gets lost a day later at the hockey rink

An empty cupboard magician, a juggler of leftovers, and a make-do artist

I’m the queen of laundry

(my royal eyes have seen that same pair of underwear a hundred times)

 

Big things? No, little things —

 

I’m the hopefully-wise-advice-giver

The occasional hugger and everyday love-giver

The rambling-dream-listener —

A tea-maker, sick-fixer, peacemaker

And everyone’s personal spelling coach.

 

Big things? No, little things —

 

I’m piecing together my

slowly-growing-love-mosaic out of

lots of little things

While praying someday

they will all see the Big Picture.

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Photo:  Roman Kraft

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{ Fall 2018 In Pictures }

It’s difficult to condense a season into a few photos.  And, to look at these, you might think everything looks ever-fragrant and all-smiles at our house. A more thorough post would include snaps of dirty laundry & dusty corners and a soundbite of a squabble or two.  This is just a brief, pictorial record of an imperfect family, living day to day by God’s grace.  We have to ask forgiveness when we step on each other’s toes and get selfish or lazy about loving one another. Anyway, here are a few random pieces of fall 2018. You have to catch this fast-moving life while you can.

 

 

 

 

 

{ A FULL Schedule }

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Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings. –William Arthur Ward
  • Wednesday: Family Thanksgiving #1
  • Thursday: Family Thanksgiving #2 + family birthday
  • Friday: Family birthday
  • Saturday: Big football “Turkey Bowl” tournament XVIII
  • Sunday: On duty in the church kitchen. Drive home, hopefully eat tryptophan-rich leftovers, and collapse in a stupor.

 

Photo credit:

 Simon Maage

{ Pumpkin Butter }

Pumpkin butter is a sweet (dairy-free) spread for bread, pancakes or muffins.  It’s deliciously spiced and very easy to make.  (We use those pumpkins that have been decorating our front steps!)

Bring a jar of pumpkin butter for the hostess at holiday gatherings. This is my own simple recipe and it makes about a gallon of pumpkin butter.

pumpkin1

 

  • 4 quarts freshly cooked pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups apple juice
  • 4 cups white sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 4 Tablespoons cinnamon
  • A few pinches of salt

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  1. Combine and cook on the stove or in a roaster oven.
  2. Stir frequently as it simmers on low to medium.
  3. The pumpkin butter is finished when it is thick, dark and stays put when spooned into peaks.
  4. Divide into jars, leaving ¼ empty at the top.
  5. Label and freeze.

 

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{ Orange You Glad? }

boris-smokrovic-146294I looked up the word of the day, as I always do

(even though the word was ORANGE.)

I looked up its synonyms and its antonyms

(there were no opposites.)

While browsing, I noticed an opportunity to click on something

(which I hardly ever do.)

There were six words to avoid in writing

(and, I guess, in speaking.)

For my own reminder, I will list them here:

OBVIOUSLY

ACTUALLY

LIKE

HONESTLY

BASICALLY

LITERALLY

 

And, just so I don’t neglect the word of the day,

here is a poem about the word

ORANGE.

It’s inspired by one of my favorite poetry books: Hailstones and Halibut Bones, by Mary O’Neill.

Orange 

Child of red and yellow,

This unrhymable and eccentric

Showoff

Shines in the spotlight of

Autumn leaves

Neon

Sports team colors

And blaze orange

Hunting gear

A juicy-fragranced color

Like no other.

Orange.

© Lisa M. Luciano 😊 2017

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Photo credits:

Boris Smokrovic: Butterfly

:Clarisse Meyer: Pumpkins

{ Education Anticipation }

IMG_20170906_191416768.jpgEvery August, I wait for a spark of inspiration to help me dive in to September’s back-to-school.

It’s amazing what tiny little event or conversation can give birth to the mysterious *muse* — brightening my dull outlook on the year ahead.

A conversation with my friend Pam recently put that spark into motion. The inspiration is there – finally.

ISLANDS: a unit study.

Unit study learning is a way to compel students to read and write about interesting topics while hiding the fact that they are actually learning.

I usually begin my year with an engaging unit study, and if we need a boost mid-year, sometimes I sneak one in around January.

So this fall we will plan to study islands, in addition to the other reading, writing, arithmetic, and history that we always do.

  1. Reading (aloud and independently) appropriate grade-level books about islands. (I have a growing book list: The Cay, Treasure Island, Island of the Blue Dolphins, Baby Island, Island of Dr. Libris, Surprise Island, Shipwreck and Nim’s Island are some of the titles)
  2. Making analogies and comparisons about islands.
  3. Learning to spell words that have silent letters.
  4. Writing reports about island nations.
  5. Studying general geographic terms. I like the picture book: Geography from A to Z: a picture glossary by Jack Knowlton.
  6. Anyone have any other ideas?

Though not every student will eagerly anticipate the writing-of-reports, a happy and enthusiastic teacher is contagious and helps classroom morale!

I think 2017-2018 will be a good year.

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Word Prompt of the Day: Anticipate

Anticipate“>

Photo credit: Sergio Jara