Tag Archives: husbands

History 10What?

29 Nov

Things I (we) Love:  My husband’s approach to History Education

Yesterday he taught his class that when Marco Polo arrived in Beijing, Kublai Kahn welcomed him into his palace, invited him to take a swim in the giant pool, and then made him close his eyes while the emperor dodged about shouting the guest’s name.

You just can’t make this stuff up.  Oh wait, you totally can.

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Or . . .

30 Apr

I know we usually reserve bookish blog posts for Friday, but sticking to a schedule hasn’t been our strong point lately.

Shoot, posting hasn’t been our strong point lately.

But here I am.  On a Monday.  Posting.  About a book.

I have a good reason, though.  Here it is:

We first encountered the Modern Mrs. Darcy when reading Pride and Prejudice over at A Classic Case of Madness.  Then I found out she was hosting this nice carnival, and since I prefer my carnivals free of overpriced fried foods and death-defying buckets of bolts, participating seemed like a lovely idea.

My first impulse was to write this post for our book blog, but I couldn’t pick one of the books.  So instead, you should go read Adriana’s post about The Well-Educated Mind.  She gets it.  And, she has clever, beautiful pictures to accompany her clever, beautiful words.

I, on the other hand, am floundering to pick a book, forget photos and carefully crafted prose.

I could write on something spiritual, like, say, Spirituality of the Cross.  Gene Veith wrote this simple book on life in Christ that made me say, “Oh!  Of course that’s what I believe!  Now I get it.”

For that matter, Music Matters by David. J. Elliot shaped my entire philosophy of music education and drove my college career, I suppose that’s pretty life changing.

Speaking of careers, the Lutheran Service Book is at the core of my career and my prayer life, so it probably deserve a little coverage.

But maybe I should tell you a romantic story.  For instance,  I fell in love with my husband while we were reading the Lord of the Rings trilogy aloud to one another in the first weeks of our relationship.

Or how about when I fell in love with him all over again as he read aloud Charlotte’s Web to our infant son?  Maybe e.b. white wins the honor.

I suppose even Mary Pope Osborne deserves some credit, because the day that same first-born child really “got” reading was when he picked up her Christmas in Camelot.  His independence and enjoyment in the book filled my heart with joy that we were rearing a reader.

Or, I could tell you how completing Don Quixote with my two dear friends gave me a high I can only imagine equals that of completing a marathon, minus the achy limbs and chafing, of course.  With pages coming in at nearly a grand, I knew finishing that book made me a Reader, and possibly a little crazy.  Together with those friends, we have made our way through at least 3886 pages of the classics, using The Well-Educated Mind as our road map.

And Susan Wise Bauer didn’t just change my life by opening the classics.  Through The Well-Trained Mind she and her mother are instrumental in teaching me how and what to teach my children.

Maybe The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society deserves the credit though.  Not only did it bring me immense enjoyment, it is the book that turned my non-reading, sixty-year-old mother into a Book Addict.  I’d call that life-changing.

And I don’t want to leave out The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency and These Is My Words: They Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine.  Mma Ramotswe and Sarah are two of my very best friends.  I introduced Sarah to my sister, and my sister introduced Precious to me.  We’re all bosom buddies.  They should be on the list.

Anybody have any good recommendations for a book on decision making?

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Hey, Lovebucket. Happy Birthday.

17 Nov

November is a birthday heavy month in these parts. Today’s? My super spectacular husband, A.J. And, lucky for me that his birthday falls on Things I(we) Love Thursday, because GUESS WHAT! I love that guy.

*MUSH ALERT*MUSH ALERT*MUSH ALERT*MUSH ALERT*

Okay, there are many things about my husband I love. He’s a generous, helpful spouse, an energetic, silly, and loving father. He’s cool & handsome & interesting & weird & and never takes himself too seriously. I love those characteristics. But, today, as I drive to Lincoln to see his choir perform at Nebraska’s Music Educator’s convention I’d like to talk about his talent.

My helpmate is a terrific teacher. I’ve had the privilege to witness him at work innumerable times – a rare gift. Initially in our marriage I served as accompanist to his middle school choirs. What? Gasp. We worked together?!? Unheard of. Preposterous. Wonderful. I’d give anything to work with him again, but alas my piano skills reach only as far as middle school repertoire goes (and he already has a fantastic accompanist that is far less lazy than I). During those years at the middle school I witnessed Adolescent Mind Molding Magic. I honestly thought that AJ had found his niche. When one is able to get a group of fifty 13-year-olds to not only learn and understand, but enjoy the Mystery of Key Signatures, that person can teach. And that was AJ. Through character voices, common interests (he has MANY with middle schoolers), and an overabundance of crazy positive energy, he was able to reach those puberty-addled brains. Daily I was impressed.

Then he went to teach high school and I just wasn’t sure those more mature minds would be forgiving of his level of nutso. Well, they were. They glommed onto the geeky like gangsters to Glocks.

Once again, on a smaller scale, I have been privy to this wonderful tutelage. Through subbing, after school activities, and a propensity to loiter I have seen his instruction, watched his interactions, and heard the outcome, and I am here to tell you – he’s got it. He is a man who GETS teaching. He is there for the students. He has found a way to empathize with and relate to them that astounds me. And I couldn’t be prouder. Oh, wait – I could. Because here’s the cooler thing – he shares his devotion to his work with us. He lets us in to his teaching world. His students know our boys and me. We know them. He has found a way to not only teach music. He also teaches the importance of family and of giving all of one’s God-given vocations their full worth. He helps kids sing pretty, sure. But more importantly, he gives them a model of familial citizenship that I fear is lost these days. And that is what throws me over the edge of pride.

And so, AJ (if you’re reading this!), I wish you the best of birthdays and congratulations on creating an environment that gives your students opportunities like today’s. Love love love.

Growl of the Beloved

8 Oct

See those cuddly bears? Those are our Oldests (when they were Youngests). I remember this evening well. My bear had been washed clean in Holy Baptism earlier that day. He was 6 days old. Christina’s bear joined us to help celebrate (as all good bear cousins do). This Mama Bear and her grizzly husband were T-I-R-E-D, and therefore, well, bearish. We had holed up in our cave for the night (or so we thought) when our den-guests invented a photo-op. (This bear metaphor is getting exhausting. Do you mind if I quit? Thanks.) Anyway, they invaded our room, and made us come downstairs for family pictures. I got all swept up in the crazy that is our family and amidst a LOT of chortling we changed our newborns into matching bear outfits.

It was this evening, in a storm perfect for spousal discovery, that I learned my husband cannot bear an interrupted bedtime OR matching cutesy outfits.