1. Tell us about a time you felt like you were "flying by the seat of your pants."
By definition, flying by the seat of your pants is "to do something difficult without the necessary experience or ability." Anything that I have done for the first time has felt like that in my life - like simple things around the farm: ordering and raising rare and endangered chickens; starting and raising a flock of sheep; or repairing a fence.
Babydoll sheep that Sophia, Olivia, and I saw
at a sheep and llama festival.
I didn't raise babydolls.
Mine were cross-bred sheep....nothing fancy.
(Taken on May 12, 2012.)
One of the ongoing areas that comes to mind is being a mother. There is no plan because life is different each day. Yes, I can have goals for what I want to do as a parent and have a parenting philosophy to direct my actions.
The girls and I watched a ship
move towards the dock in Two Harbors.
(Taken on June 4, 2013.)
Donating food to the food shelf.
(Taken on December 8, 2012.)
I can only hope that the job I am doing as the girls' mother is a good one and that helps prepare them for the future - as participants, leaders, and contributors to making the world a better place.
2. When or where would you most like to be "a fly on the wall?"
I don't know if I would want to be listening to information that I shouldn't hear - especially if it is about me. Sometimes it is better not to know what people are saying about you or how they truly feel. It can be quite hurtful if they don't have your best interest at heart.
Gretel as a puppy listening
(Taken on March 28, 2008.)
The only thing I could think of where I would want to be a fly on the wall would be in the future in a situation that could help me and/or my family now. Could there be something we could be doing differently now that would help us later? Learning information like that would be helpful and positive.
3. "Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you, but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder."-Henry David Thoreau
Would you agree? Why or why not?
There is truth in each part of the quote. If you are so focused on creating that perfectly happy life, it can backfire because you're only looking in the future and missing the present. There are moments in each day that are happy and positive, yet those could be overlooked if one is only looking into the future - towards a "greater" happiness.
Sophia and Olivia having a tea party on Christmas Day.
(Taken on December 25, 2007.)
Conversely, if there is a darker or harder time in one's life, trying to schedule activities or do things that bring happiness can make difficult days more palatable. It's creating happiness and happy memories despite challenging times.
Olivia doing therapeutic horseback riding.
Riding helped her overcome a lot of
developmental and speech delays.
She loved the weekly sessions, and
I am so grateful for the improvements and skills
she gained because of the experience.
(Taken on September 11, 2007.)
Sometimes - when you're not trying at all - just being in the moment...fully present...you can find yourself incredibly happy and grateful for the life you have - however simple it is.
Girls by the leprechaun trap.
(Taken on March 16, 2009.)
4. Share a favorite movie, book, or song with flying in it's title, lyrics, or theme somewhere.
Planes, Trains and Automobiles is the only movie that comes to mind that refers to flying or air travel in the title.
My Dad by a plane in Colorado.
I took him there to visit his brother who also had Alzheimer's Disease.
He was impressed with the size of the plane.
(Taken on July 6, 2010.)
I've watched this movie many times. It's a classic comedy about a man who wants to get home for Thanksgiving (played by Steve Martin), and who has to deal with the company of a shower ring salesman (played by John Candy) along the way.
Although it is a comedy, the movie does touch on the loss of a spouse and the difficulty of going on with one's life; and the generosity of strangers/friends in welcoming others to join them for the holidays.
5. What is one task or chore you tend to do "on the fly?" Is this something that really needs to be done another way?
Sometimes dinners are done on the fly which isn't the best or most thoughtful way of making food for my family. There have been many times when - in the middle of the afternoon - I'll hear, "What are we having for dinner?" and I'll realize that I didn't take something out to thaw in the morning.
My response - typically - is, "I haven't gotten that far." In other words, I didn't plan ahead like I should have done.
Sometimes I have done meal plans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. During the late-winter and spring, we have been trying to use what we have on hand rather than purchasing a lot of new ingredients for recipes - so I haven't been as diligent with meal planning. I should get back to doing that. It makes life much easier.
6. What was happening the last time you thought to yourself or said aloud, 'Wow, time flies when you're having fun', and you meant it.
Whenever I am on vacation or taking a short "field trip" the time seems to fly by.
The girls feeding the chipmunk in Grand Marais.
They named it "Chippy."
(Taken on September 8, 2010.)
Spending time with family doing something special always feels like time goes by way too quickly.
A pelican flying at Lake Shetek State Park.
Sophia, Olivia, and I stayed here when we were
exploring the southwestern part of Minnesota and
southeastern part of South Dakota.
(Taken on June 9, 2012.)
It seems like time in general is going by too quickly. Days go by and it's as if I don't even know where the hours went. It's like everything is on a fast speed at this point in my life.
Days are full and the time goes by at a pace which I'd like to see decrease. Maybe that happens when you get older. Too much that you want to do and accomplish...and the reality that there isn't enough time left.
7. This Thursday is National Garlic Day. Will you add garlic to your menu on Thursday? Do you like garlic? What's your favorite dish made with garlic?
I like garlic. However, I'm going to be at a homeschool conference starting on Thursday so I don't think it would be a good idea to eat a lot of garlic that day or sweat it out on Friday.
Olivia making the sauce for lasagna.
(Taken on April 27, 2012.)
My favorite dish made with garlic is lasagna. My mom made the best lasagna and I continue to make the recipe. It has about 15 layers of sauce, noodles, and various kinds of cheeses....and, of course, garlic.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
In the past, Olivia and I always made and decorated a lamb cake for Easter. This year, Sophia wanted to make a cake for Easter that she saw on YouTube. It's a geode cake.
Sophia with the geode cake she made; and a close-up of it.
It's a four-tier cake that has homemade frosting between each layer and on the cake. It is topped with a blue and white fondant and decorated with three colors of rock candy (to look like a geode).
She tried a new cake recipe (which turned out well), learned how to use fondant, and did a cake design that was new to her. It was very time consuming, yet the result was beautiful and delicious.