Saturday, May 10, 2008

The Second Law of Thermodynamics

In one way or another, we have to strive against the second law of thermodynamics: Entropy.
Energy travels a downhill pathway.
Everything deteriorates toward the disorganized.
In the last three days I've had vivid occasion to be reminded of the two principles of this law.
Entropy has caught up with me.

On Wednesday, I helped my two college-students, Elijah and Claye, move home for the summer. In the driving rain. (Well it wasn't very good for driving in, but carrying clothes, mini refrigerators, book bags, and another thirty pots in--that was worse) There is now a pile of Elijah's dirty clothes in the laundry room about waist high. Claye's room is swamped with art supplies. We have to clean the garage so we'll have room to store it all for the summer, while she goes back for summer school. Entropy

It was my last week of school also--quarter tests, reviews, semester tests, awards ceremonies, banquets, the end of school picnics, graduation: All over. I'm left with a stack of papers to grade about six inches high. (Something to do while I work on laundry)

This year, our end of school picnic was held at the zoo, about an hour and a half from our school. I didn't ride the bus, but drove, since I was carrying my two grandchildren and their car seats.
There were sixty schools at the zoo yesterday and about five thousand children, not counting all the parents, grandparents, and our own group of secondary students. The lines were long.
The animals, however, were in fine form, posing majestically against their carefully manicured habitats, and there is something refreshing about listening to the excited reactions of a four year old and a two year old as they see new sights and ride trains and carousels. Claye came along to help with the little ones, and my junior high students lent their hands as well. It was great fun. We walked uphill everywhere and never downhill. (Well, that last part can't have been true but it seemed like it.) All day, my energy traveled a downhill pathway. I barely made graduation, and this morning my hands are swollen and my bones ache.

As I hoisted myself out of bed, ruefully contemplated my oddly sunburned nose, surveyed my neglected, highly-disorganized house, sadly noted my empty refrigerator, frowned at the stack of screaming mail, I reminded myself that it was summer---time to rest for a little spell; this work will all get done when my bones have recovered.

I'm blaming the second law of Thermodynamics.

My Mother-In Law

She's 85.

Two days ago she rolled her car as she was driving to visit her daughter who lives an hour away.
They think maybe she went to sleep at the wheel.

Now she's in the hospital with a broken vertebra and a back brace. I haven't talked to her, because she was not able to handle the phone just yet. They say she is badly bruised.

Over the years, she has been my prayer partner. Whenever I had a crisis here, she knew just what to say to make things better, and she has prayed this family through many difficult decisions.

Now it's our turn to pray.

UPDATE--She has been moved to rehab, but isn't up to a visit yet. She wants us to wait until she is home and then come stay for a week and help her. Right now her son and daughter are with her, taking turns.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

A Limerick and a Haiku

(These were written for the writing prompt "Warning" in answer to Mad Kane's challenge .)


The sirens screamed out in her ear
And wrapped in the tension of fear
She saw the lights flashing
Their reds and blues clashing
They sounded unusually near


One long loud honking
Sturdy steps lead under ground
That tornado gone?

Sunday, May 4, 2008

A Plethora of Pots

It's the end of the semester for my art student. I've decided to call her "Claye."* She is begging to go to summer school. It seems that they have a jewelry-making class over there this summer.

Can you find a job there?
Maybe pay for the extra dorm and food?
Maybe make me a pot in clay class?

Well actually, we have a plethora of pots already. She always makes pots--I believe the requirement is at least thirty per semester. After three semesters in pottery class, I'm beginning to feel like the widow helped by Elisha.
My house if full of pots. These are just some of the latest.
I swiped one particularly attractive pink swirly one for my front room desk, and set the rest on the coffee table. Now if I could only fill them all with miracle no fat, no cholesterol, no calorie, taste-exactly-like- butter, oil. We could sell them for a fortune.
Ah the sacrifices we make for art.

(If you enlarge the pictures, you will see the great
variety of glazes and shapes. They are pretty.
And she is getting better at it.

(One good thing about anonymous internet blogging is that you get to rename all your offspring and friends. Yes. The joy of picking out names without the trouble of bearing and rearing another child!)