Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I'd Leave

I'm feeling again my inadequacies of actually posting a poem for Poetry Wednesday.

My friends who also post love poetry - or love someone who does - and find beautiful poems to fit the moment.

I am not like them. On most Wednesdays, I find myself searching the poetry books I read to my children for school, looking for something, anything, to fit the mood, the weather, the time of year.

This is the situation today. A cool, dreary, threatening-to-rain day at my house. A day in which the hormones seem to surging in my 13yo - and it 'ain't purty.'

I found myself once again, wondering what I would write about, where I would find a poem. This is our last week of 'full-time' school (math, Latin, spelling continue through the summer) - could I find a poem about the end of school? Nothing.

It's spring, almost summer, but feels more like early April - perhaps this poem about April rains would do. But no, at the end it says, "I love the rain." Today I definitely do NOT love the rain.

Then, I happened upon this tiny, little poem. It fits my mood, it fits my house (right now) - and so I offer my modest poem:

I'd Leave
Andrew Lang

I'd leave all the hurry,
the noise and the fray
For a house full of books
and a garden of flowers.

(I have a house full of books, no garden full of flowers, and noise & fray galore. I'm thinking of escaping to my mother's house - plenty of quiet, books and flowers.)

Friday, May 13, 2011

The Sound of Music, World War 2 and Hitler

I've been reading quite a bit about the time before and during World War II. I guess it naturally comes after the Great Depression kick I was on a little while ago.

Whatever the reason, I've really enjoyed the books. The first book is Agathe von Trapp Memories Before and After The Sound of Music by Agathe von Trapp, the oldest daughter from the Von Trapp family of The Sound of Music fame.

And yes, her name was Agathe, not Liesl. And really she was the second-born. Her brother was the oldest.

Those are just some of the facts Agathe sets straight between real life and the movie version of her family's story. She admits she had a very hard time when the musical, then movie, were released because the producers took such liberties with her family's story.

The most difficult was the portrayal of her father, a loving, warm-hearted man. Yes, he did use a whistle to call them, and she explains why. She also writes about Maria, her second mother, who was only eight or nine years older than Agathe herself when she married Georg, Agathe's father.

Their life and escape from Austria wasn't nearly so dramatic as the movie's portrayal, but it is interesting. I enjoyed reading this book about the history of their family, their life in Austria and then in America, and about Agathe's coming to terms with The Sound of Music.

Agathe's book focuses on her family and not on Germany, Hitler and the politics of pre-war Europe. However, Erwin Lutzer's When a Nation Forgets God certainly does.

Lutzer draws seven lessons from Germany's descent into Nazism for today's American reader. He explores Germany's economy, legal system, and the Nazi propaganda, among other things. Lutzer's writing style is easy to read and engaging - and while some of the conclusions he draws are alarming, he always gives his readers hope.

When a Nation Forgets God is a short book, but well-researched, well-written and worth reading.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

In Awe of You

As I type this, a storm is rolling in. We are seeing lightning, hearing thunder, and are about to experience a big, ol' downpour.

My kids are in the living room, listening to Adventures In Odyssey (The Novacom Saga, in case you're curious) and building with Duplos.

They are lobbying for a movie after dinner (maybe something on Netflix Mom!) because what else do you do when it's storming?

Meanwhile, I'm almost ready to pull dinner out of the crock pot. Just another ordinary day in the Leichty house.

This week for Poetry Wednesday, I want to share a poem with you that a friend wrote. Mom and I lead a Bible study at our church, and last Thursday we asked a couple of ladies to share for our last meeting. This is what one of them shared:

In Awe of You
by Audrey Marie Hessler

That You could create the glorious heavens,
That Your hands hold time and eternity,
That You give and know every breath of life,
And still care about the small world of me.

That You knew mankind from the beginning,
Seeing each of us for who we truly are.
That You would come and live here among us,
And not just watch silently from afar.

And again, again I am reminded
How great a God, how great a God You are!
That You would know the story of Jacob
As You know so well the story of me,
Then love us, is a marvel much greater
Than the mystery of eternity.

So I stand in awe of You, Lord, again.
Thank you, Oh, thank you for loving all men.
Without You, Lord, how hopeless we would be.
Thank you, Oh, thank you, Lord for loving me.

A poetic reflection on the study "Loved by God" by Liz Curtis Higgs.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Mother's Day

My husband asked what I wanted to do for Mother's Day. My answer was immediate:

1. Giordano's Pizza after church
2. Family walk on the Millennium Trail
3. A big, ol' uninterrupted nap

Amazingly enough - I got my whole list! I forgot to pull out the camera to show you my favorite, yummy, gooey stuffed pizza from Giordano's. (It totally blew my 'diet' and put on the couple of pounds I had lost last week, but it was oh SO worth it!)

Then we hiked a part of the Millennium Trail - which I had never been on before, despite its close proximity to our house. Glen figures we walked nearly three miles - the kids were exhausted - but good sports. Bonus - a jogger stopped long enough to get a picture of our whole family.

Then, at home, I laid down and got a nap. Not a big, ol' nap, but an uninterrupted one.

It was lovely.

Isaac made flowers for me in Sunday School. I think his teacher asked him to write on the flowers what he appreciates about me. Apparently, I'm a "Great Cook" and a "Grat Tucker Inner" (as in bedtime) and a "Grat Sewer." (By the way - it's sew-er, as in sewing machine. Not sewer as in waste management. I was confused for a moment too.)

But the best gift of the day came about 8pm. Glen and Nathaniel worked on cleaning up the living room (including sweeping), and then they folded the first load of laundry out of the dryer - the dreaded 'whites' load. Bless them!

(Lest you think I have an angelic 13yo - Glen took the initiative. Nathaniel was an unwilling participant. I'm appreciative none-the-less.)

Wednesday, May 04, 2011


As I went looking for some books to review on my kid's book review blog, I came across this poem which I really love.

I found it in The Children's Book of Virtues edited by William J. Bennett.


The fisher who draws in his net too soon,
Won't have any fish to sell;
The child who shuts up his book too soon,
Won't learn any lessons well.

If you would have your learning stay,
Be patient - don't learn too fast;
The man who travels a mile each day,
May get round the world at last.

What a great reminder! I remember starting on my homeschooling journey, thinking how overwhelming the stack of books looked and wondering how we would get through them all.

One book at a time, that's how. Little bits each day over the past eight years have added up to hundreds of books read together, many more than once as my younger children started school. Now, as high school looms on the homeschool horizon, I sometimes wonder, "How?"

One day at a time. One subject at a time. One book at a time.

And in ten years, I will look back at our family's journey amazed at the distance we traveled.

Read more poetry here for Poetry Wednesday.