Category Archives: Encyclopedia Blue

Just a dusting

1. EB, my 18yo son, left these footprints on his way to the school bus this morning.
2. Can you tell which one is a shoe print?

3. I have things on my mind that I can’t write about at the moment. This is where a blog fails as an online journal, but it is important to respect others’ rights to privacy.

4. It was wonderful to have all of my boys at home for a few weeks (and SuperDad took some time off from work, too).

[click on pics to embiggen]

5. I’m pretty sure MM was more than ready to go back to college!

Personal Best

After all this hullabaloo over marching band, I can’t possibly leave out my cross-country runner…

Congratulations to EB and his team! EB ran a personal best today (he PR’ed, as they say in the biz) and both our boys and girls teams are headed to Regionals. 😀

Snapshot of my morning

Names have been changed to protect the — ….who am I kidding?!

—–Original Message—–
From: kcinnova
To: SuperDad
Subject: EB was required to wear a dress shirt, tie, and slacks today


After suffering through 2 arguments about dress clothes, EB ate
breakfast, put in the last derogatory word, and got out the door in time
to catch the bus. He even wore black shoes and socks! (I was NOT arguing
over the footwear — I told him that if his black shoes didn’t fit, go
ahead and wear his running shoes.)

His tie remains untied, but hopefully someone will help him out or at
least he will tie a knot in it haphazardly. I couldn’t do much about the
lint he’d already managed to get all over his [BRAND NEW] black pants.

(“Dress clothes are impractical,” said EB.)
(“Vacuum your room more often,” retorted the mother.)

He looked very nice, and I told him so! But sorry, no picture: that
would have created another argument. I’d like to know whose idea it was
to have the athletes dress up whenever they have a home meet.
His preferred choice of khaki pants and a short-sleeved button-down
plaid shirt would have pleased us both and saved us from the arguments.
(Bonus: the lint wouldn’t have shown so badly)


Note to self: buy the kid a L/S shirt and tie combo that works well with
khaki pants.

From: SuperDad
To: kcinnova
Re: EB was required to wear a dress shirt, tie, and slacks today

I love and support both of you kind, gentle, people.

Clearly, SuperDad has a firm grasp on irony. EB and I butt heads more often than bighorn rams. For an accurate picture, hit replay multiple times.

Random Dozen … Happy Fall!

Hosted by:
Lidna at 2nd Cup of Coffee

1. Have you, or has someone close to you, ever won an award for anything? (I just came from my dad’s ceremony wherein he was given a medal of honor by the French government for service in France in WWII. Pictures to follow.)
We pulled EB out of public school at the end of 2nd grade for 2 years of homeschooling (long story, best decision for everyone). Our public school at that time was very understanding and worked with us to allow EB to participate in things that mattered greatly to him, one of which was the annual science fair. EB created a science project about velocity and mass, using a homemade catapult and different balls.  He not only took the top honors at the school, he went on to represent the school (the only way he could legally participate) at the district level, where he again won top honors! At the end of the school year, the principal made sure that EB was there for the awards ceremony so that he could be honored with a plaque in front of his peers. This mama was very proud and EB was thrilled.

2. Who is the nearest relative to you who has served in the US Military?
My husband has 20+ years of service in the US Army (with some National Guard and Army Reserve time before that). My uncle was also in the Army, my younger brother is a Marine (not currently serving, but “once a Marine, always a Marine”), and my grandfather served in the Navy (active duty during WWII, reserves after that).

3. Share something that stirs the patriotic spirit in you.
On a regular basis, saying The Pledge of Allegiance at our small town football games stirs my spirit. I am especially stirred at our high school’s annual Veterans Day ceremony/program. There is a club that works all year long on a wonderful program, plus the members work during the year on supporting local veterans.

4. Where are you in the birth order in your family? Do you think your “placement” made a difference in your personality?
I am #3 out of 4 children. If that is supposed to make me laid-back, I guess that it made a difference!

5. Name one trait you hope you carry that was evidenced in your parents or grandparents.
My paternal grandmother was creative, loving, and funny. I often hope that I am a reflection of her (I hardly knew her; we lived far away).

6. If female, do you prefer wearing a skirt or pants? If male, shirt and tie or polo?
I find skirts to be comfortable if they are simple and flowing and not too long — and if I can wear Birkenstocks with them. Otherwise, I will take pants/capris/shorts every time. The added benefit of the latter option is that I can usually wear athletic shoes that support my poor feet, but I suspect this is a question about dressing up a bit.

7. Approximately how many times do you wake during the night? What do you do to go back to sleep?
If I go to bed early enough, I will usually wake once, take care of business, and fall back into bed already half asleep. (It’s quite possible I was never fully awake.) If I am truly awake and my stomach isn’t growling like a bear in springtime, then I’ve discovered that I’m probably supposed to be praying… so I do.

8. Share a favorite movie quote.
Only one? That’s like cats and potato chips…I don’t think I can do that! So here are 3:

“It’s just a flesh wound!”
“Badges? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges!”

“Life isn’t fair” (as said by Scar in The Lion King)

9. What is your favorite Fall candle scent?
It’s a tie between “Apricot Brandy” from PartyLite and “Autumn Wreath” from Yankee Candle

10. What is one Fall activity you’re looking forward to?
Well…. Since I am currently in the midst of marching band season (football games! band competitions!) and cross country season (5k meets), I will state that I am looking forward to HOPEFULLY going hiking and camping. We managed to squeeze this in the first part of November last year.

11. Tell us about a pleasant surprise that happened to you recently.
I thought I had all of my weekends thoroughly booked until mid-November, so I was pleasantly surprised when EB had a meet-free Saturday and I was not needed to chaperone a band competition. (I still went to the competition, but I went as a spectator with my dh.)

12. What was it like when you first met your in-laws-to-be?
I was wearing a flannel shirt and jeans –which pretty much matched my guy… we had “style”  in common 😉 –and after walking into the house and being introduced, we all sat down in the living room. Then my future dh said, “So I suppose you might have already heard, we’re engaged.” There was stunned silence. We thought the news of our engagement might have proceeded us, but it apparently had not… LOL  After a few awkward moments, my future FIL said, “Congratulations!” My poor MIL, she was still trying to size me up! That was 23-1/2 years ago and I dearly love my in-laws; I’m pretty sure they like me. 😉
I hope I get to meet my sons’ future wives before that one gets sprung on me!

Today isn’t all sad

Speaking of raising children to adulthood…

Encyclopedia Blue is many things:




He is eating a smoked scorpion. A friend from China sent us a jar full of them, but EB was the only one in the family who dared to try one.

Water lover


He was the only one of us who would ride the Hades roller coaster at Wisconsin Dells in 2006. I took this picture between his first and second rides.



For a boy who has had to share his birthday with a national tragedy for the past 9 years, I think he has turned out pretty well.

Happy 18th birthday, Encyclopedia Blue!

First Day of School

SnakeMaster, 5th grade

Humorous-Juniorous, 9th grade

Encyclopedia Blue, 12th grade

And now yesterday’s song makes me feel a little weepy…

When 45 = 11.25 = $150

Last night I watched my son run for 89 minutes.

With each passing lap —45 in all — the sweat glistened more brightly on his skin, the determination evident on his face.

At the end of the fundraising event, he had run 11.25 miles and raised $150 for the team.

I’m very proud of him.

Way to go, EB!

Into the clouds

Carmi is celebrating the 100th “issue” of Thematic Photographic this week with the theme of Into the Clouds. Click here to join the party!

click ’em to embiggen


So…. this weekend is crazy-busy. Today I clean like a whirlwind (or not… did I mention our temps are hitting 90 degrees F *PLUS* humidity?!) and shop for groceries. Tomorrow I have to be at the school at 4:15am with H-J. We are headed to a band competition and then to an amusement park (they do get to change out of their concert dress uniforms first). Expected return to the school is  sometime before 2am. Yikes!
While we are gone, EB will finally take his SAT and MM will put in some hot hours of yard work before THE GRANDPARENTS (yay!!!) arrive for a late supper. (Note to self: remember to plan some food for SuperDad to fix for supper.) This actually does tie in to Into the Clouds since they are flying here from the other side of the country. But even if it didn’t… well, it’s my blog! 😉

On Sunday morning, MusicMan is preaching one of the sermons because it is Graduate Recognition Sunday.  This means there will be 8 of us vying for 2 showers before getting to church for the 9 o’clock service (and I suspect he’s supposed to be there early). We have a tough enough time getting 6 of us there at differing times on other weeks, so this ought to be interesting…
The annual church picnic begins at 4pm over at the county park. That wouldn’t be such a big deal, except that the group I sing with is always asked to perform, along with leading the music for Vespers (although we use that term broadly and loosely — we are, after all, a group of Presbyterians at a county park). I won’t be at rehearsal on Sunday morning since I’ll be at the brunch for the graduating seniors and their families. First things first!


What do you have planned for the weekend?

Yesterday, today, tomorrow

Yesterday’s post that sent you here is rather timely, since tomorrow is the day MusicMan and about 150 others from his school travel to Disney World for their band/orchestra spring trip. They will be performing and attending workshops, along with having a blast at the resort. Lucky kids! (I might be lucky to not be chaperoning…) If you need to find me, I’ll be at the airport at 4am.

Two weeks ago today, we were traveling on the New Jersey Turnpike in the rain, headed for NYC on our Spring Break.  Aside from being frightened of losing my life several times with EB at the wheel — how many adults does it take to yell at a student driver and one another? — it was a successful journey.  We stayed at an old military installation on Staten Island.  It rained all day then, just like today!

Friday 5 on March 5

There is an official Friday 5 (or is it Fave 5 on Friday?) meme out there somewhere, but I just do my own thing here.

I am thinking about 5 great things today:

5. It’s FRIDAY!!!  Let’s have a celebration:

Yes, it was from 1984 — the year I graduated from high school.  These guys sound just as good now as they did then AND I was lucky enough to see them in concert 2 years ago:

I’ve been a RUSH fan for 30 years! But let’s not dwell too much on a number like that, okay?

4. I’ve gone to bed before midnight every night this week.  Most nights I’ve been in bed by 9:30pm!  I’m a night owl by nature, but I get up early with my husband each work morning, so it is healthiest if I can get to sleep sooner than later.  I hope I’m not bringing on a case of insomnia tonight by talking about this run of wonderful sleep!

Before going to bed on Wednesday night, I prepared a breakfast bake (you know, the kind with bread, eggs, cheese, chiles, and milk) AND put together the Basil Chicken in the crockpot. Both dishes went into the fridge, then I cleaned the kitchen and started the dishwasher before going to bed. When I woke up at 5:45am, I smelled something…  cooking?!? … and panicked.  Had I actually started cooking something instead of putting it in the fridge?!? (I had been really tired and yawned through the whole process the night before.)  Nope! 😛  My husband told me that the 17-year-old had been up cooking from midnight to 2am, making a dish for Spanish Class.  Apparently the boy had known about it for a week and waited for the last minute to take care of the requirements.  (SuperDad heard EB washing up & brushing his teeth at 2am. I slept through it all.)  So, that’s the back-story. The great things are:

3. EB figured it all out on his own and dealt with the problem WITHOUT calling on me for help. I went to sleep without a worry in my sleepy head because I didn’t know anything about it.  I’m thrilled that he took full responsibility for his project.  (And did I mention? I slept through it! 😀 )

2. I came downstairs to what had been a clean kitchen the night before and it WASN’T a huge mess. EB had left a note for me asking for me to please put the cooled Majao in a plastic container that he could take to school because it had been too hot at 2am for that step AND he APOLOGIZED for the dirty dishes left in the sink!!  WOW!! 😀

1. And the #1 reason to celebrate:  SuperDad and I were married 22 years ago today (although it was a Saturday, not a Friday)

What is good about your Friday?