If anyone is still out there, I am coming back online.
The past six months have been busy–lots of just holding on and getting through. It is amazing the difference having three kids in the house and five total, including the adults, makes in my work flow. Grocery shopping and cooking have become a rather complex mission. I typically shop at about three different places over the course of about two weeks. I hit my food co-op, the Whole Foods Market, and our local grocery store (for things like Ethan’s Life Cereal and Eggo waffles–he rejects the frozen Organic buckwheat waffles that I try to get him to eat) for our food, so I don’t always realize the complexity. But today, I tried to get it all in one place to limit my time spent out in this sub-zero weather. I had to laugh when I saw that my cart had a jug of 1% milk, a half gallon of skim Organic Valley milk, a pint of Organic Valley cream (for my coffee), a half gallon of soy milk (for me), a half gallon of almond milk (Hannah), Lifeway wholemilk kefir (for Josh), Lifeway kefir (for me), and I bi-passed the half gallon of whole milk I’ve been buying for Josh because he still really just prefers breast milk and I already had a ridiculous amount of liquids in my cart. Anyway, that’s a whole lot of milk and it kind of gives you a general idea of what our meals around here look like these days. Hannah pretty much cooks her own meals with huge amounts of vegetables and hard core vegan grub, like Tempeh (which even I reject) with sauerkraut on top and we are always bumping into each other in the kitchen. I still try to make sure Ethan gets some meat occasionally because he is growing (up and massive amounts of muscle mass) so rapidly that my vegetarian meals only hold him about three hours.
Hannah is very interested in food production and preparation. I wonder what will happen next year if she doesn’t have access to a kitchen? She is seriously studying her food options at every college she applies to. So far, she has been admitted at Beloit, Carthage, and University of Pittsburgh. She is very enthused about the food options in Pittsburgh-very vegan friendly city. We have four more applications that we are waiting to hear about before Hannah makes her college decision.
Ethan competed this weekend in his first meet of the year, the John Roethlisberger Iceberg Invitational. He advanced to the finals for the first time in three events (P-Bars, High Bar, and Floor). He competed last night with three University teams (Illinois, MN, and Nebraska). He was very nervous on his first event (P-Bars) but by his last event, floor exercise, he totally rocked his routine and came in 2nd. I was very proud of him. College scouts there last night. Just 2.5 more years to stay healthy. We’ll see how it goes–so many gymnasts injure out of the sport at this level. Last night was pretty joy-filled. Gymnastics is something that you slowly practice and plug away at over time (as in 345 days/year since age 4) and then you have to wait and wait to see what becomes of all of this labor. I think that last night, for the first time, Ethan really had a glimpse of what the future could hold.
I told myself that if I came back online, my blog entries were going to be much more joy-filled. There is so much negativity in the world anyway. If a person is lucky enough to be tucked into a house with four other amazing people (3 cool kids and a fantastic partner/husband), why not celebrate the joys of it all, even amidst the sometimes overwhelming chaos!
More soon. Really.