Martha Thinks

Saturday, October 31, 2009

A little too close to home

This is what it looks like when one party in a major news story lives around the corner from your house. Day and night, night and day for 5 days until they either gave up or the story ran its course. Right in our little tree-lined corner of suburbia.

One day there were 3 of these spire trucks. On any other day of the year, these streets host nothing more exciting than dog walkers and school kids.
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The interior panels and lights were aglow at night, reporters at the ready.

One night coming home from work around 10 pm, the reporters perked right up as my car turned the corner. I could hear them thinking "is it HIM??" Nobody but a tired mom, here. I waved anyway. They looked pretty tired, too.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Jesus Tree

In our backyard we have an hydrangea tree. The exact name of it, I don't know, but it is beautiful and there are many like it in my neighborhood, though, I think I may boast that ours in the largest. It almost got chopped down about 5 years ago. It was moving day, September 2005, and we were unloading boxes. I was exhausted, the kids' were eating McDonald's pancakes on a table outside and the bees kept getting into the syrup. I was unnerved by the whole thing, not understanding that the bees come for just a few weeks every year when the blooms appear, I thought it had to go! Well, that would have been the biggest mistake of my life.
So all winter and truly most of the Spring, it looks like this. Half dead, brittle, lifeless. There are big holes in the tree where termites have eaten it and we always think it will never bloom again.
And back to life it comes, little green sprouts appearing everywhere. Hence, The Jesus Tree.

By all rights, this hollow tree has no reason to bloom

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Ok, so here's where the goosebumps come in. We found this cross sitting in the tree "after" we had been calling it the "Jesus" tree for a couple of years. What do you think about that? It gave us all pause. They say that miracles are all around us, I told the kids. Maybe this is one of them.
The flowers turn from snow white to a mauvey-pink. Now I wouldn't give it up for anything. So we put some fertilizer at the base and dumped our extra dirt around it, encouraging it in any way we could.

The Jesus Tree in all of it's fall splendor. Soon the circle will start again.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Boys in the Band

I've been spending most of my Friday nights chaperoning the RMHS Band at the football games. Althought the half-time performance is fantastic and they are winning all sorts of awards at their Band Competitions, my favorite part is when they leave the band room and march down the hill playing "Street Beat." The drums make your heart beat a little faster. And although "Friday Night Lights" is supposed to be all about football, this mom thinks they are the real stars of the show.

I know you must be wondering what this is a picture of. It's Brady. Salz. Smiling. At. His. Mother. The rarest of sights indeed. Enjoy it with me, won't you?
Carter smiling through the cold.
Lining up!

The girls in the Color Guard. I hope they always remember these times. Fresh-faced cuties. Hey, it's not that I want to get all nostalgic or anything, and I know when these kids are sitting on the bleachers freezing in 40 degree temps it's not easy...but someday these nights spend together laughing, sharing money for hot chocoate that they only have 4 minutes to drink between performances...will be very precious memories to them. Of course, I sound like SUCH a parent when I tell them this.
There's Carter breaking parade form in the Columbus Day Parade in the North End.
The proud RMHS Marching Band under the direction of David Bunten. They rock!
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I'm Moving to Vermont and Making Quilts!

How many times did I say that in my youth? How many times did I think that was a good idea, live a little boho year or two and discover my creative side? Ok, fast forward 20 (ahem) or so years and now I really "am" taking quilting classes. And let me tell ya, the moving to Vermont part would be a piece of cake compares to this business of cutting up little pieces of fabric and sewing them back together.

Quilters can be surgeons, quilters can teach classes at MIT, the precision, the angles, the corners, the measurements. It is very hard stuff.

And I am crafty, very crafty me. Painterly me, colorful me, love to cut stuff out, great with projects, but I've got nothing on these quilters. It is not for the faint of heart. But I take on this challenge! Even though so far I've done my pieces all my hand because the sewing machine to me is a great big Mt. Everest of a hurdle and I am completely intimidated by it. But as a fellow Adult Ed quilting classmate said last night "if you don't start machine quilting, you won't live long enough to finish anything." Cracked me up.
I noted in class last night that really, the back of the quilts should be framed for that's where all of the hard work really shows!
This is a table runner that was started two years ago that has no backing yet. Never said nothing about fast.

This is on the kitchen table now. I go through phases, but if I leave it out it's ready to sit down and plug away at a little at a time. And now after a certain amount of complaint on my part you may ask "well why do you do it, Martha?"...hmm, well, it's meditative and relaxing the way knitting or yoga can be. It makes you focus on what's right in front of you. And when it actually starts to look like something? Phenomenal.
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Friday, October 9, 2009

Carter and the Performance Artist

Carter jumped across the Pond to Oxford, England with Rich a couple of weeks ago. Rich was invited to teach a course during their "summer school" and invited lucky ducky Carter along with him.
I guess my middle child is really growing up as he spent a lot of time exploring the town on his own and has great pictures to show for it.

On this day he met up with a street performer in London who posed people in various positions before he put "himself" in the story.

When he was finished he and Carter were "running" together across the Tower Bridge toward Parliament. Jealous? Me, too.
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Sunday, October 4, 2009

You Can Find A Heart Anywhere


Sipping my Sunday coffee I happened to look down at the adoring puppy at my feet (or let's just be honest, a lab in search of a crumb) and saw a heart, his heart. How appropriate, I thought, for this dog that is very hard to love some days but who does love us unconditionally.
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