Showing posts from June, 2010

An Exaltation of Larks

Once, during my undergraduate study when I was an English major working on my bachelor's degree, one of my professors introduced the concept of collective nouns for animals through James Lipton's book, An Exaltation of Larks. It's something that has stuck with me ever since.

A collective noun is the term used to describe a "group" of something. There are the common ones that we hear all the time like "a herd of cattle" or "a flock of geese," but there are some collective terms that are downright beautiful, and others that are just plain weird. Some examples you might not have heard of - including the title of this post- are:
Shrewdness of apesChain of boblolinks (what the heck is a bobolink?!)Wake of buzzards (seems fittingKindle of kittensScold of jays (is that why they seem like they're always yelling at each other?Smack of jellyfishLeep of leopardsWatch of nightingalesBevy of otterBouquet of pheasants (sounds lovely!)Passel of possumStory…

Full Circle

Right now my sisters and I are experiencing one of the great ironies of life: when the child becomes the caretaker of the elderly parent. With my mother in her present condition and residing at the Highland Nursing Home in Massena, a situation I experienced last weekend particularly drove this point home.
Last Saturday, I was able to take my mother out to the mall for the first time since she had fallen and broken her hip the night before Mother's Day. She was absolutely thrilled to be there to see all her "friends," and the ones she ran into were equally happy to see her looking so healthy and well. If I haven't mentioned it before, for a long time now, but particularly in the seven years since my father's death, my mother has compulsively bought cheap stuff (some [like me] would call it "junk") with every trip to the mall. Over the years, this stuff has piled up on every surface in the house, and made for a very cluttered and dangerous living situation…

The Long-Awaited-Much-Anticipated Freshman Dance

Last weekend Annalisse went to the freshman dance with 18 of her closet friends. Unfortunately, she did not have a date with an actual boy, but that's really a blessing in disguise because, as much as she likes to "talk the talk," she's not ready to "walk the walk" and is very hesitant about boys (Whew! I can relax a little longer on that one!). Anyway, between having her braces off and a new hair-do (combined with a new dress, new jewelry, and new shoes), she was all gussied up and off to a friends house by 5:30pm for group pictures. All the girls looked so nice! The best thing was they had a lot of fun at the dance itself - not always the case as sometimes the prep is funner than the actual event. I'm sure talk will now turn to next year's 10th grade dance, during which the kids will kick it up a notch with gowns, tuxedos and limo rentals. As Nonnie used to say, oh mamma mia!

Four Updates in One, All the While Counting My Blessings

I've been trying to get to updating the blog but the last couple of weeks have been kind of like a runaway train for us. So here are a bunch of unrelated updates all in one!

Baker Blog Updates Lag, But For Good (German) Reasons
With Belinda visiting (which was AWESOME), we were a little out of our routine, doing something to keep busy just about every weeknight while the kids were at crew practice, and running around every weekend, trying to get the most out of her visit with us. It's been a great 2 1/2 weeks with Belinda, who left bright and early (5:30am) on Wednesday morning, as the group headed to Washington DC and New York City for a few days before flying back to Germany tomorrow evening. Maybe the greatest part about Belinda's visit was spending time with the other Fairport families as we got to know each other better. It was a great experience all around, and the best part is Cam leaves to spend time with Belinda and her family three weeks from today.
14 Going on 21