Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Some Kind of Week

As I enjoyed a too rare moment of quiet and conversation with Dear Husband the other day I realized just what a full week we had experienced, a week full of activities, conclusions, and beginnings. It was enough to take my breath away and more than enough to prompt praise and thanks to God for seeing us through it all. The highlights:

Tayta left on her first international trip sans parents (though with adult friends of our family), traveling to Istanbul where she had been invited to help with childcare for a conference. Caring for babies and small children is a joy to Tayta and she took pleasure in every moment of caring for her young charges. I rejoiced in this opportunity God had given her to serve, doing something that she loves so very much.

Tayta and her little friends

On Friday, Active Son and Artist Son participated in the annual Dead Sea runs, Artist Son running the 10K and Active Son completing his first full marathon--a goal he had set for himself to accomplish before leaving for college. And what better place to run but to the Lowest Point on Earth. We were all up at 4:30am on race morning as the guys plus friends had to meet the race buses which would take them to their race starts. The main road to the finish was closed so friends and I took the scenic route through Madaba, up over the top of Mt. Nebo and down the back side to the Dead Sea.

Artist Son burning up the road with his best 10K run--he'd have run the 21K but for the 17 year old age requirement.

Active Son approaches the finish line of his first marathon

After concluding weeks of training by running a marathon, Active Son next looked forward to a new challenge, making the decision to accept Boise State University Honors College's offer of admission with a full-ride financial package. Becoming confident that he would like to pursue a graduate degree in physical therapy, Active Son thinks Boise State, just 10 minutes away from his grandparents (who have promised to teach him how to ski but were careful not to offer until he made his final decision) will be a fine place to learn and grow.

And as Active Son looks foward to beginning a new season of study, Dear Husband rejoiced that his season of formal study had come to an end yesterday, when he took his last final of his last course in his M.Div. program. This very last course was Eschatology and taught in Arabic (many of his courses were in English)--a doozy of a last course, for sure, especially since he wasn't on the same eschatological page as his professor. Towards the end my wifely encouragements degenerated into admonishments to "grin and bear it" and "just do it! "

I thought a celebration dinner in order, and I still do, but it turns out that the celebration dinner that took place that night was in honor of my birthday with my dear family made the dinner and the dessert. This was especially nice since my family really doesn't cook--unless you count egg sandwiches and grilled hamburgers. Now Tayta of course is a fantastic baker, and her overall kitchen awareness contributed a great deal to the effort. I picked the menu: Lemon Chicken, Garlic Roasted Broccoli, Greek Salad, Artisan Bread, and Apple Pie with a Walnut Crumb Crust. I handed them the recipes for the new-to-us dishes and they did a fantastic job. I'll post the recipes later. Can you guess which child made, or should I say designed, the salad?

Artist Son's Greek Salad, arranged in true Mediterranean style.

This week also saw the much anticipated first blooms of the foxgloves I nurtured from seeds last spring and Artist Son immortalized the best of them in the colored pencil sketch which graced my birthday card.

First Foxglove, by Artist Son

And maybe a little rest this weekend? Maybe, a little. This afternoon, freed from the bondage of Arabic eschatology, Dear Husband and the boys boarded a plan for Cairo with their Amman Little League team where they will enjoy some baseball on real grass fields--an advantage of playing near the Nile. I think Tayta and I will live on leftover apple pie and sandwiches until they return on Sunday night.


Jodi said...

Melissa, happy, happy birthday! What a creative family you have!

Jodi said...

Oh, and thanks for your comment about the violets. Have you ever tried to candy rose petals? They're good on top of cake or in shortbread.

Laura A said...

Happy birthday, Melissa!

So, if the air is thinner for runners at high altitudes, does it have more oxygen at lower ones? That would make every day of your life high altitude training, sort of, right?

And I love the foxglove drawing! Wow, I hope Artist Son does nature journals, because they'd be quite enviable!

And congratulations on the full ride to Boise State, too!

My, there's a lot of good stuff in this post! Okay, who designed the salad? Would it be the same person who designed the card?

Lori said...

Nice. All of it.

Quotidian Life said...

Thanks, Jodi. Rose petals are a good idea. We have lots of those around here, though I think it might be hard to find pesticide free ones unless I grow them myself. Actually rosewater is used in a lot of Middle Eastern desserts. Sometimes the flavoring is too strong and I feel like I'm eating perfume!

Laura, yes there is more oxygen at the Dead Sea but I when I ran the 10K a couple years ago I didn't find it noticeable easier to run. Amman's altitude is about 900 ft. And, yes Artist Son made both the card and the salad. He likes to draw animals more than flowers but every once in awhile he indulges me and foxgloves are my favorite.

aurora said...

wow, we too are so excited to have our nephew so close! I had no idea!