A shout out to the equinox.

Well, It's fall here.  I use the term fall loosely, because it isn't anything like the autumns across the rest of the country.  Our arboretum has to buy hundreds of thousands of pounds of ornamental (and edible) gourds in order to display the fall colors here.  But I'm not complaining.  If this were Idaho, people would feel that this weather is suitable for swimming.  But it is not.  I personally don't believe in swimming unless it is at least 95F.  So we haven't been swimming in weeks.  Sometimes we even put on our cardigans... in the mornings... early mornings.  Basically it warms up as soon as the sun is out.  Still not complaining.  We have many more days of outside play waiting for us this year.  And that will make up for all the days we didn't go outside in the oppressive heat during the summer.  And so life is good.

I'm just glad it's winter squash season.  I'm not glad that our winter squash is crazy expensive here.  (A dollar a pound, and those bad boys are heavy.)  So you will find me in the ornamental gourd section, with my phone out, trying to identify all the squash that is labeled "mixed variety pumpkins" to figure out which ones are edible.  Because those guys are only 40 cents a pound.  And I love love love squash.

One day, I will have a root cellar, and I will store enough squash to eat one a day every day until late spring (when winter squash starts tasting mealy).  Because when you buy squash in that quantity, they are as sure as heck not going to charge you a dollar a pound.  And then my life will be complete.


Ella just informed me...

that she is saving up enough money to buy this car.  Yes, a little white Fiat.  She is her father's daughter.


Introducing the newest member of our family...


I know.  It's kind of a crazy name for a male fish.  But we asked Ella what she wanted to name him, and Xena was her choice.  I don't know where she got it.  Unless she is remembering that that was her womb name when she was a fetus.  But, I find that highly unlikely.

So, he sits on our dining room table, and we feed him at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and I have to say, I really like the fish.  And I'm pretty sure he likes me, too.  Because every time I come by the bowl, he swims around like crazy doing his little beta dance for me.

Long term, I think he's going to get rocks and a plant.  But we decided on a $10 limit for a new pet, and since the fish cost $4, and the food cost $3, he was lucky that he even got a bowl.  Otherwise we would have had to keep him in the bathroom sink.  And that would have been awkward for house guests.


How did this happen?

Ella has been interested in writing for a while now, and she's been learning to write letters here and there.   And asking how to write basically everyone's name, including her own.  But she blew me away Sunday when she just busted out with her own name without any help.  It was pretty exciting.  We've started working on reading, because she has shown so much interest in letters and she has all of her letter recognition down, so we're learning phonetic recognition now.  I bought a program called Rocket Phonics.  I think the name is a little misleading.  Our progress has not, shall we say, been faster than a speeding bullet.  But Ella asks to 'play' Rocket Phonics nearly everyday, and so we are just now starting to see real progress.  We've only had the program for two weeks, so I guess that's not bad.  But, in my parental visions of teaching my precocious child how to read, I thought we would at least be ready for Hop On Pop by now.  :)  Like a Rocket!  You know?  Maybe next week. :)