On February 25th Barrett turned 7 months old; the next day Liberty turned 4. Liberty’s birthday was also a snow day, so she got to stay home, eat pancakes, and watch TV–exactly the way she’d like to spend every morning. On Saturday we had her party here at our house–10 kids and 9 adults. The requested theme was “Strawshorcake.” I wanted to make a doll cake, but Derrick wisely talked me out of it so we ordered one from Hy-Vee instead. Last year we learned that the kids were more interested in free play than in planned activities so this time we ate cake first and opened presents, then Derrick and some of the other adults took the kids out to play in the snow. When they came back in we had hot chocolate and opened the pinata.
I felt terrible sugaring the kids up like we did, but when you’re trying to do a party on the cheap…
Last night we were playing musical beds again. First Liberty crawled in with us, and then when Barrett woke up hungry around 5:15 I settled into Liberty’s bed with him. A short while later Liberty crawled in with me, and I could feel immediately that she was running a fever. Thankfully it was just 100 F, but high enough to stay home and watch Strawshorcake videos on Youtube all morning.
As if the day wasn’t special enough already, I then learned that George Justice and Devoney Looser are leaving MU to take on new jobs at Arizona State University. As happy as I want to be for them, I’m still processing this one.
This afternoon I realized the Strawshorcake videos on Youtube had suddenly become Barbie videos. When Liberty requested the one with Barbie in a wedding veil and white underwear, I pointed out to her that we don’t take pictures of ourselves in our underwear and put them on the internet, so we don’t watch pictures like that of others. We’ll see how long she’ll go with that.
Later after we had read a chapter from Little House in the Big Woods, I suggested that she watch the BBC documentary Amish: A Secret Life. She’s watched it before and was fascinated with the little kids in it. She provided a running commentary:
“They have no ‘lectricity…like Laura and Mary and Baby Carrie…and no TV!”
“They have God in their life.”
Me: “What does that mean?”
“I think they pray.”
“They’re barefeet! The children are barefeet. [pause to think] It’s the summer there!”
“They’re at Target. They’re at Target!”
“They put sugar in their yogurt. Isn’t that too bad?” [A few days ago I explained to her that I don’t like to buy yogurt at the store because it has so much added sugar.]
“I jus’ don’t like the song, but I do like it, but I don’t like it.” [Referring to a haunting rendition of Salve Regina (a Catholic anthem) set to Pachelbel’s Canon which ironically is the soundtrack to the Sunday morning scene of Anabaptist worshipers gathering.]
I wonder how David and Miriam, the young Old Order Amish couple featured in the film, are doing. A sweet family facing such tough decisions!