Monday, January 30, 2017

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John's Feast...

This is John. He's 20 and a real sweetheart. He has a sunny disposition and a twinkle in his eye. He does drive me bonkers, sometimes. He has the disconcerting habit of blowing things up, knocking things down, catching things on fire, cutting things... you get the picture. Most people don't know that John has dyslexia. While reading can be a real challenge- one he meets head on because he's just that determined, it also means that his brain looks at things differently. Amazingly. We go outside and think- it's windy. John goes outside, thinks it's windy and says, " A windmill would be cool. I'll make one." And he does. No YouTube or Google required. He just has it in his brain. He's a puzzle solver without realizing it was a puzzle to begin with. He's a real DaVinci engineer. John likes people and finds them entertaining. He's not easily offended. And he's a joy to be around.
His feast had a "Warfare" theme. Because nothing says "peace on earth" like war. The first room involved sitting on the floor in the dining room- a few kerosene lamps and some wood in the center to represent a camp fire. With theme music, we were transported to the Civil War. He served beanie weenies, hoe cakes and sliced peaches/pears for his appetizer. When we were finished that, we were bombarded(pun intended) with the sounds of gunfire and bomb blasts. John was screaming that we needed to evacuate as he handed us helmets. We were forced to duck through a tunnel into the living room where the couches were arranged like trenches. Yep, WWII. He served noodles and Balkan meatballs in cans- which he harvested from the peaches and pears. The sound of bullets whistling past. Ok, that was kind of fun. A band of brothers and all that. Next thing we know, helicopter noises are drowning us out and John's yelling at us to bug out. We had to belly crawl under razor wire to make it to a jungle of bamboo hanging from the ceiling. Jungle noises all around. Yep, Vietnam. We all crawled into a tent and ate cheesecake cupcakes with cherries and an army man on top. Shew. His feast was a real work out! He took most of the day rearranging furniture, constructing sets, cooking and finding his sound tracks- I think Sonia played a big part in all of that, too. Bless her heart. It really was a great feast.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Abraham's Feast...

This is our dear Abraham.  He is 13 years old and our youngest. He's shy, not awkwardly so.  Quiet.  He is an avid reader and gamer. Abraham is a big thinker, but unlike most deep thinkers, it doesn't seem to cause him angst. Harry Potter is very popular with him.  I think he's as attached to my chickens as I am- and that's saying something.  They love him and will perch on him any chance he gives them.  Most chickens aren't cuddlers, but they are around Abe.  He is a dedicated worker and doesn't give up until the job is done. Everyone enjoys his company.  He's peaceful, calm and even tempered.  Come to think of it... I don't think I've ever seen him angry. Maybe I should be worried.  But he is the least worrisome kid I've ever met. Abraham is a delight.  

He had an amazing feast.  Each year, I expect there to be a problem with the children coming up with something new, and each year, they bring it home.  Something new and imaginative.  People always ask me where they get their ideas from and I can honestly say, I have no idea.  Are you ready?  

Abe had a "midnight snack" feast.  We've had to celebrate our feasts later in the evening, this year.  Joe closes his store at 7pm and by the time he gets everything squared away, he usually doesn't get home until close to 8:30pm. We are all happy to wait as it just wouldn't be the same without him.  Our son Jacob gets up at 3:30am for work and so it's past his bedtime, but he's been a sport. Technically, it wasn't midnight, but it worked.  

When Abe invited his guests to his feast he told them that they had to wear their pajamas.  Everyone was more than happy to comply. The table was set with one of my favorite possessions- an old white enameled kettle- filled with poinsettia and berries.  Some twinkly lights. Other than that, the table was bare.  No one sets the table for a midnight snack.  He handed out fuzzy socks for the girls and thick wool socks for the guys.  Everyone knows your feet get cold when you sneak downstairs to satisfy those late night munchies.  They do around here, anyway.  His appetizer was cereals- the good stuff.  No bargain brands.  Golden Grahams, Cocoa Puffs, Reeses, and Apple Jack's. Kinda funny how much everyone enjoyed that. He used Styrofoam bowls so there wouldn't be any dishes to wash.  (That boy hates washing dishes.  But he does that chores one week out of every three.  I don't care how much of a "Betty Homemaker" you consider yourself, there's nothing fun about washing dishes- with no dishwasher- for 9 people.) He had milk as his beverage- with strawberry and chocolate Quick.  He walked his guests to the kitchen- in the dark- to retrieve their cold cut sandwiches from the frig.  Ham, roast beef, turkey.  Pre-made and individually wrapped.  He brought out a vegetable tray and condiments, chips to go with them.  The mood in the room was just the way it feels to raid the kitchen when you're hungry late at night. Relaxed and chill- just like Abe. Everyone was laughing- some to the point of tears. His dessert was ice cream, of course.  Chocolate chip cookie dough, death by chocolate, and Butterfinger.   Everyone was primed to climb into bed. 

This is where things get fuzzy.  I've had just a terrible head cold- is there any other kind?  But I can't remember Bill's talk. I hope this doesn't make me a bad person.  I'm sure it was something encouraging.