Friday, July 31, 2009

7 Quick Takes 7/31/09

Still have to learn to do the doohickey thing for this. I feel I am being rude or doing something slightly unethical by posting under this title!

1. Music Camp is over! Hurray! Becky got a lot out of it and and Sean soldiered through it and now it's over. I forgot how emotional the kids get at the last day. A ferocious spat erupted immediately on the way out of the building and I did not handle it well. Becky cried for 1/2 hour (felt longer!) after we got home.

2. This has not been a great parenting week for me. I have become irritated with each child in turn; (except for Josh; he's my current favorite because he's quiet and does as he's told!) so irritated that I feel like I'm looking at them through the wrong end of a telescope. They are far away and alien; these couldn't be my children, could they? The moments pass, of course. I really do love my children, but I also think I am burned out a bit by parenthood. I think it is the crazy, every day is different, element of summer. Our usual rhythms are gone. Of course the usual rhythms also burn me out, so maybe I just can't cope in any situation!

3. I am determined to go to confession this Saturday. This determination has doubled after typing out Take no. 2 above.

4.When I'm not acting out my irritation with my children, I am busy reading to them. I am deeply enjoying reading Johnny Tremain to Becky and Sean. I read it eons ago and I had forgotten what a treasure it is. Amazing writing! Becky and I are also reading through On the Shores of Silver Lake and finding it wonderfully enjoyable.

5. Speaking of reading, one of the books I'm reading to myself is How the Scots Invented the Modern World. It is the type of book I'd like to read slowly with a pen and a highlighter so I can actually get all the wonderful knowledge into my brain. But, alas, I am reading it before I go to bed which means my eyelids start to droop and I spend most of my reading time trying to keep them open and struggling in vain to comprehend the very interesting words in front of me. I'm about halfway through the book and I've gotten to Adam Smith of Wealth of Nations fame. Did you know he was Scottish? My husband the Econ major who actually read Wealth of Nations did not know that! Anyway, one little factoid I found interesting is that Smith thought that the natural division of labor that capitalism would produce was mostly a good thing but he feared that it would have a narrowing effect on the human mind. Each person would only be engaged in his particular division of labor and would necessarily grow ignorant or suffer from, as Smith put it, "mental mutilation.' So he thought that the government should get involved! Not in trade but in ensuring that this narrowing didn't happen by establishing a system of education for its citizens. I thought that was really funny, because, wasn't it Dewey or some such educator who wanted the U.S. public schools based on assembly line systems so that the students would be able to go out and get jobs in our workforce. Hmmm, not sure that broadening effect Smith envision worked out the way he thought!

6. I made homemade cream of tomato soup yesterday from tomatoes I bought at the farmers' market. However, even though I followed the recipe exactly, I did not get the 2 cups of tomato puree out of my fresh tomatoes, more like 1/2 cup. So then I had to add a cup of tomato sauce to quick make up for it and the soup still wasn't tomato-y enough. I liked it and Hannah's friend who was eating over with us, liked it (or she said she did but then she had to be polite!) but no one else ate it. I hate cooking for my family.

7. Today is the feast of St. Ignatius! I ask you, dear Saint Ignatius, to pray for my dad who had a good Jesuit education. And thank you, St. Ignatius, for all you did. I shall pray for the order you established that they may turn away from apostasy and instead be faithful to your leadership.

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