In my favorite poem by Robert Frost, Nothing Gold Can Stay, he reminds us that like the seasons of nature, life is one season melting into another, and quickly fading away. This is my attempt to document each season in my life and my family.

Spring Semester’s Reading Selections

Filed under: Reading,School — Rachel at 9:57 pm on Monday, May 9, 2011

I had written all of these authors and titles down for Amy to quiz me on them before my final exam in my American Lit II class, and I thought I would post them here. I don’t know if anyone is interested at all, but, if you are, here they are. I read all of the following this past semester:

“Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain

“Fenimore Cooper’s Literary Offenses” by Mark Twain

Excerpt from “Letters from the Earth” by Mark Twain

“An Occurrence at Owl Creek” by Ambrose Pierce

“Chickamauga” by Ambrose Pierce

“The Luck of Roaring Camp” by Bret Harte

“Miggles” by Bret Harte

“The Awakening” by Kate Chopin

“A New England Nun” by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

“The Real Thing” by Henry James

“The Revolt of Mother” by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

“The Souls of Black Folks” by W.E.B. Du Bois

“Up From Slavery” by Booker T. Washington

“The Passing of Grandison” by Charles Chestnut

“The Goophered Grapevine” by Charles Chestnut

“The Wife of his Youth” by Charles Chestnut

“Under the Lion’s Paw” by Hamlin Garland

“Maggie” by Stephen Crane

“Impressions of an Indian Childhood” by Zitkala Sa

“The School Days of an Indian Girl” by Zitkala Sa

“An Indian Teacher Among Indians” by Zitkala Sa

“The Law of Life” by Jack London

“To Build a Fire” by Jack London

“Mauki” by Jack London

“Hands” by Sherwood Anderson

“Mother” by Sherwood Anderson

“Adventure” by Sherwood Anderson

“Spoon River Anthology” by Edgar Lee Masters


“Trainor, the Druggist”

“Doc Hill”

“Margaret Fuller Slack”

“Abel Melveny”

“Lucinda Matlock”

Poems by Edwin Arlington Robinson

“Luke Havergal”

“Richard Cory”

“Miniver Cheevy”

“Mr. Flood’s Party”

“Red Wind” by Raymond Chandler

“The Man Who Was Almost a Man” by Richard Wright

“Winter Dreams” by F. Scott Fitzgerald

“Babylon Revisited” by F. Scott Fitzgerald

“The Magic Barrel” by Bernard Malamud

“Defender of the Faith” by Philip Roth

“Paul’s Case” by Willa Cather

“The Glass Menagerie” by Tennessee Williams

“The Swimmer” by John Cheever

“Separating” by John Updike

Poems by Robert Lowell:

“Memories of West Street and Lepke”

“Skunk Hour”

“Night Sweat”

“For the Union Dead”

Almost over!

Filed under: Random Thoughts,Reading,School — Rachel at 10:07 am on Friday, April 20, 2007

The Spring semester, that is. I took my last Music test yesterday, so that course is over. I got an A in the class. Yay, me! I have written my last paper for my comp class. I have to email a first draft to my professor, and then possibly change things per his directions. I’ll turn it in next week. That’s the last thing for that class. I have to take a Final in algebra, and that’s the last thing in that class. I have to do an impromptu speech next Monday in Speech, and the following Monday will take a Final in that class. That’s it. When I do that, my semester is over. I’ll have almost a month before Summer classes start.

I’m looking forward to summer. I plan on doing lots of fun stuff with the kids. I plan on reading lots and lots of books. I have about ten to read, already, and I have a list of new books I want to order from Amazon. I also plan on getting in shape. I’ve finally started losing weight. I’m almost back to the 120’s. That is going to be a happy day for me. I plan on walking and getting back to doing yoga and pilates. All that good stuff. I plan on trying to get together with friends. I plan on going to Dollywood often. I plan on missing my husband very much while he’s at Fort Jackson, and I plan on visiting him there.

I’ve got lots of plans. The two classes I’m taking over the summer are both online, so I don’t think they’ll take copious amounts of time. While I know I’ll miss Chris so much, I know from when he went to Vegas that I’ll probably try to cram my days full of activities to make the days go by faster. So if any of you were dying to hang out with me, this summer is going to be the time to do it!

It’s Been A While

Filed under: Activities,Family,Kids,Random Thoughts,Reading,School,Website News — Rachel at 9:47 am on Friday, April 6, 2007

Sorry about the lapse in posts the last few days. I’ve been really busy. Between you and me, I’ve been pretty occupied in finishing that book I told you about. I just couldn’t put it down. I justified it by telling myself that the sooner I finished it the sooner I could concentrate on what I should be doing again. 🙂 Whatever lets me sleep at night, huh? 😉 Look for my thoughts on the Memory Keeper’s Daughter soon in my What I’m Reading section.

Seriously, though, I have had a lot of schoolwork lately. I have less than a month left of the spring semester of school. For those of you who could care less what I’m doing in school, just skip down to the next paragraph. 😉 I had a reading to do in Speech class Monday. I think I did well. I read Hooway for Wodney Wat, which is an awesome children’s book. I get nervous before getting in front of the class each time I have to speak. It’s not fear. I’m not afraid to speak in front of people. I don’t even get nervous till it’s almost my turn. Once I’m up, though, my heartbeat speeds up and my hands shake. My voice wasn’t shaky when I read, but I hands shook, thus making the book I was holding up shake, for about the first four pages. I got my grade for my last speech the same night, and her comments on my speech were “Calm down. You look nervous. You’re a good speaker.” So, I guess I wasn’t hiding my nerves as well as I thought I was, huh? I did get a 97 on the speech, though. Next Monday, I have to give a persuasive speech. I haven’t picked my topic yet. I’m also getting my honors presentation ready to give to Kyra’s school a week from today.
I had been working on a paper for Comp class, too. It was on advertising. I turned it in last night. I think I did a really good job on this paper. I proofread it a dozen times and had Mom proofread it for me, too. I am hoping to get a really good grade. I was shooting for a 100. I haven’t made a perfect score on any paper. Chris told me yesterday that he wishes I was a perfectionist in everything like I am in my schoolwork. Alas, I’m not. I am also steadily working on my short story, which is my honor’s project. I am making pretty good progress on it. I’m shooting to give him a first draft by next Thursday.
In music, I am planning on writing my concert report today on the opera I went to. I should have already wrote it but I was worried that my first one wasn’t right. I got my grade on it this morning, though, and I made a 97 on it. So, now I’m not worried. I will write the second one and turn it in, as well as the one I wrote for extra credit on Oklahoma. I have a test in Music on Wednesday.
In Math, there’s nothing exciting to report. I have another test in it on the 16th, and then the final test a week after that. Nothing pressing right now.
So, I’ve got a lot going on with school, but I’m still doing well. I am getting close to the end of the semester. I have already registered for two classes this summer. I am going to take the next developmental math class over the summer to get it out of the way. I don’t get credits for the math I’m taking now or the next one, because they are not regular college math classes. Math is not my strong suite, so I’m going to take them all one right after the other, while they’re fresh on my mind. I have registered for my fall classes, too. One of which is College Algebra. Ugh. Hopefully I’ll do well enough, though, and get them all out of the way. I have registered for five classes this fall.

Okay, enough about school. What else has been going on? Well, Chris has been busy with, of course, school. He’s also working a lot of overtime now. Another site is fixing to strike, so they sent some of the guys from Chris’ site out of state to work the strikers’ jobs, so Chris is working overtime to cover their shifts. They haven’t actually went on strike yet, so I’m hoping they won’t. Once the other guys come back, Chris will go back to his regular work schedule. If they do strike and stay on strike for a while, Chris won’t get to take his scheduled vacation. That would totally stink. His vacation is scheduled for the end of May, and he has to report for duty at Fort Jackson on June 3rd. Hopefully, we’ll be able to take a family vacation before he leaves. So, that’s what he’s been up to.

The boys had doctor’s appointments last week. Everything was great. I’ve already forgot their stats, though. I think Elijah weighed about thirty-six pounds. I forget how tall he was. The doctor was unconcerned over the lump on his forehead that is still there from where he hit his head in January. He had to have blood drawn, which stunk, and it took four of us to hold him down. Owen was doing great, as well. He weighed nineteen pounds.

In other kid news, Owen has cut all four top teeth. They are just barely sticking through his gum, but they are there. Elijah is making some potty-training progress. Not as much I would like, but he’s getting there. Slowly. Kyra is doing well, too. She is on spring break from school right now, and is enjoying that.

We took the kids to Knoxville Tuesday. Get a load of what great parents we are. First, we took them to Chuck E. Cheese’s to play. Then, we took them to Steak and Shake for lunch. After that, we went to the movies, where we watched “Meet the Robinsons” in 3D. The movie was so cool. Chris and I both thought it was a great movie. Really funny. The 3D aspect made it super cool, too. After the movie, we went to the used bookstore, which we all love. I got three more books to add to my “to read” pile . . . as if I have time to read. By the time we got home, the kids were worn out and happy. It was a really fun family day. Don’t you wish I was your mom? 😉

What else? Oh, my friend, Joy, is moving back to Tennessee! I am really excited about that. I don’t know how long she will be here. They are in the ministry, so they could move away somewhere else. If she does stick around at a church in this area, then I will probably be moving in a few years. So, we are not likely to live out our lives in the same area, but I fully intend to enjoy living close to her for as long as it lasts.

One last thing…remember my brothers in your prayers. Aaron left to go overseas again today, Jason is still out in Caliornia, and Malachi is probably traveling home from Kansas this weekend. So, pray that the Lord would keep them all safe in their travels.

That’s all for now. Be good, people!

Ooh, I’ve done it now!

Filed under: Random Thoughts,Reading — Rachel at 10:02 pm on Sunday, April 1, 2007

I started a new book that I’ve been wanting to read. My friend, Heather, sent me The Memory Keeper’s Daughter a while back, and I’ve been putting off starting it. I have had so much schoolwork that I’ve not had time to read for pleasure. I knew if I started it, I would just want to read it and not do schoolwork.

Well, this evening, I took a break from working on my Comp homework to feed Owen, and I grabbed the book and started reading while I nursed him. Well, he’s been fed and in bed for a while, and I need to be working on homework. Instead, I think I’m going to go read some more. I can’t help it. It’s calling my name!

How to Bathe a Baby (and other short stories)

Filed under: Family,Random Thoughts,Reading,School — Rachel at 9:54 am on Tuesday, February 20, 2007

So, I know I’ve been absent for a few days. If it weren’t for my life going into warp speed lately, I think I would blog more.

Last Friday, Mom watched the kids for us, and Chris took me out for dinner for our anniversary. It was nice. We went to The Bonefish Grill. I had never been there before. We hadn’t planned where we were going to eat beforehand, so we had to wait an hour for seats. We went next door to the little ice cream shop and had a choco-latte while we waited. It was yummy. Dinner itself was delicious. We got the Bang Bang Shrimp appetizer, and Chris impressed me with his ability to use chopsticks. Who knew? I didn’t. He had the grouper, and I had the mahi mahi. It was so good! It was fun, too, because it was somewhat more fancy than most places we go out to dinner to. It felt special.

Saturday, I got some groceries and did a little laundry, but, for the most part, I read. For fun. It was good. I had just got a new book in the mail, Singing Songs by Meg Tilley, and I read the whole thing in two or three hours. It was good, but a little sad. I’m going to review it in What I’m Reading if you want to check it out. I also started Lord of the Flies but I’m only about five chapters into it. It’s pretty interesting so far. It’s nice to read for fun. I’ve been too busy for the last few weeks.

Sunday, we went to church in the morning, amidst snowy conditions. We got little more than a dusting, but they had closer to two inches at church. A lot of people weren’t able to make it to the service. After church, me and the kids went to my mom’s and had dinner, and Chris came home to study. He preached the evening service, and it was really good. Pastor Pallotta told him to make sure he put the message on the web site, so, if he does, I’ll give you the link.

Yesterday, we took the church kids who were under ten to Chuck-E-Cheese’s. Can you say crazy? Everyone had the same idea, and the place was crammed full of kids. It was Pastor Pallotta, Miss Tammy, and me watching out for my three kids, Emily, another four year old girl, a five year old girl, and two little boys, aged about eight and ten. It was nuts. We had pizza and played, and the kids came home with tokens that they didn’t use up. They had a lot of fun, though. I managed to take a few pictures. I’ll try to post them a little later.

About thirty minutes after we got home from that trip, I had to leave and go to speech class. I had to give a speech demonstrating how to do something. I had finally settled on demonstrating “How To Bathe a Baby”. I wrote my outline yesterday morning, and practiced it about four times right before going to class. Kyra was mad at me for taking her baby doll with me to use in my demonstration. I was hoping to do it quickly, but we did our speeches in the order that we signed up for them. I was second to last. I wasn’t nervous when I got there, but the longer I sat watching everyone else give their speeches, the more nervous I got. I think I did okay, but I don’t know that I did really good. The bad part is, I have to wait like three weeks to get my grade.

School is going to get pretty busy this week and next. I have a Music test to take between midnight tonight and Saturday, an algebra test to take by next Wednesday, and my algebra mid-term has to be taken at a testing center by next Saturday. This Friday evening, I am going to the symphony, and then I have to get to work writing a concert report for that class that is due mid-March. I also have to re-vamp my paper on Miss Tammy for Comp class and have it completely finished by Thursday night when it is due. Luckily, since I did my speech last night, I have it easy in Speech class for the next couple of weeks. Next week, we are just going to finish the demonstration speeches. Since I already did mine, I just have to go and watch the others’. The week after that is Spring Break, so there won’t be class. I may have already mentioned that I got my acceptance letter for the honors program the other day, so now I have to set up honors projects with two of my professors. I am going to go Friday morning and talk to my Speech teacher about a project I can do for her class. I plan on talking to my Comp professor about a project in his class as well.

So, as you can see, things have been hectic. Chris has been busy with school, as well. The kids are all doing well. Time is flying by, and, before we know it, this semester will be over. Chris is really looking forward to leaving for Chaplain school in June. He is so overworked right now, that he’s looking forward to a break from it all. We are going to take a vacation the end of May, but we haven’t decided our destination yet. We have contemplated Disney, but I don’t know. I do know that I am looking forward to it, though.

So that’s what I’ve been busy with. I will try to get some pictures up later today, and a book review as well. Right now, I have to see to a squalling baby, and then some algebra. Have a great day, everyone!

Oh, How I Love Them!

Filed under: Kyra,Random Thoughts,Reading — Rachel at 12:41 pm on Wednesday, February 7, 2007

I should not be posting to my blog right now. I really shouldn’t. I should be either cleaning house or doing homework. Oh, well.

I didn’t get my desk chair yesterday. I didn’t even look for it. We went to the used bookstore to see if they had any of the books that Chris needed for school. They didn’t, but, oh, guess what they did have! They had:

Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather for $3.95
Once There Was A War by John Steinbeck for $1.50
The Pastures of Heaven by John Steinbeck for $1.95
The Winter of Our Discontent by John Steinbeck for $4.00
Maggie and Other Stories by Stephen Crane for $.90
Lord of the Flies by William Golding for $1.50

and Kyra got

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll for $.50

Yeah, Baby!
I.Love.Books! Love ’em, love ’em, love ’em!

Kyra’s “Alice in Wonderland” is not a picture book, but the actual book. Obviously, she can’t read, so I’m reading it to her. We have read the first three chapters already. She likes it a lot, and I love reading it to her.

I have less time than I’ve ever had to read for pleasure, but I will get them read eventually. I have barely even gotten into “Great Expectations”, but I will get to it.

Okay, ten minutes wasted talking about what I got, so I must go. I will see how much housework I can get done between now and when I leave to go get Kyra in about fifty minutes.

Ready, set, clean!

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