1. Â Oof. Â Am I losing it? Â Tonight as I did my usual evening transfer of boys, coats, Â lunchboxes, and bags from my car to the house, I inadvertently left my teaching bag on the front step. Â I didn’t realize it was gone until literally hours later, when I was searching for my laptop and couldn’t find it anywhere. Â Clearly, Mama needs a vacation. Â (Stroke of dumb luck: it wasn’t raining tonight. Â Phew.)
2. Â After a gorgeous summer-like October, we are firmly in fall mode around here. Â It was actually cold last weekend, and I loved it … it was so cozy to put on my new flannel pajamas at night, and I’m thrilled to see the trees turning color. Â It’s California color, which is far less spectacular than the photos I’ve seen of my in-laws’ New York home in fall, but we are getting some change Â (witness the Japanese maples in our backyard, above). Â And it makes me happy. (Speaking of leaves, check out this wonderful post by my blogger friend Fran.)
3. Â Matthew, at age five, is Schoolhouse Rock’s newest, biggest fan. Â The album is playing all the time around here now, and I have to say, it’s pretty fun to see him get so into songs about interjections, conjunctions, and No More Kings — all those tunes I remember from my own childhood. Â And if he hasn’t yet memorized the Preamble to the Constitution, he’s darn close. Â (It’s not unusual to hear that song ten times in a row, which is the problem with giving your child temporary executive control of the remote.)
Last night he said to me, Â â€œMommy? Â When I first heard the Preamble song, I didn’t like it. Â But then I listened to it some more, and now it’s my favorite.”
“Matthew, isn’t that a good lesson about how we need to give things a chance before we decide we don’t like them?” Â I asked pointedly. Â (I’m a teacher and a mom. Â I couldn’t help myself.)
4. Â Have you noticed my new little sharing plugin at the bottom of each post? Â If you like something you read here, it’s now super-easy to share it on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and email! Â (Click on the arrows on the left to get to the email icon.) Â So share away!
Another feature: Â if you are looking for a book to read for your book club, what about Mary and Me? Â Check out this Â printable PDF file of reading group questions (it’s a great preview of the book, too!).
5. Â Okay, I’ll admit it: I’m totally hooked onÂ Dancing with the Stars. Â It’s a joy to watch people who are so Â athletic and graceful, because I am neither. Â (Seriously, there are exactly two people in the world who think I’m a good dancer, and I gave birth to both of them.) Â Plus the costumes are fun, and I love seeing all the different styles of dance. Â Great stuff. Â (Go J.R.!)
6. Â I was reflecting earlier today on church, and community. Â We’re making the trek into San Francisco for Sunday Mass these days, largely so that the boys can attend the preschool catechism they offer at our church there. Â I have to admit, it’s tough to have a commute on Sunday mornings too, especially when there are churches so much closer to home. Â But this is the parish where Scott and I got married, and where the boys were baptized; it’s the parish where Scott works, and where we know someone in nearly every pew. Â And that sense of community matters to me. Â Â It’s like the song for Cheers: sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. Â It’s a joy to worship with people who know not only our names, but also our history. Â It’s worth the commute, even on Sunday morning.