just be

  • Oct 24, 2011

I feel a certain measure of guilt that we live in a state full of national parks and monuments and yet nearly every school holiday we choose to stay home. In theory, we love to travel, we love to camp, but with the reality of an intense school/music/sports schedule, we usually need those precious days off to just be.


Of course any non-trip represents financial savings, so I felt completely justified in ordering a stack of books from Amazon. In truth, I buy a lot of books, but not this many at once. Guess which book was read by the most people over our four-day weekend?


Our apple adventures continued with four pies, two gallons of applesauce and Xander’s obsession– dried apples, he prefers the name ‘apple crisps.’ Our friend Lisa gave us the instructions: peel/core/slice, cut in half sprinkle with cinnamon and place in the food dryer.

Bemoaning our lack of a food dryer, Xander complained to his Grandpa Fritz. Incredibly, Fritz had rescued my mom’s 1973 dehydrator from the DI pile when her house was sold this summer.


To me (and Xander), it felt like a miracle, like my mom reaching down from heaven to say, “I’m still watching over you.” This silver box was a standby of my childhood– my mom dried apples, pears, tomatoes, poured out batches of fruit leather and infamously, one year, dried several pounds of hot dogs.



Are there enough apples in this pie?


No, let’s add six or seven more.


Even more than apples, my boys love baby Darren. They pull faces, sing silly songs and tickle his feet just to hear his golden laugh.


But no game compares with pulling Kevin’s hair. Don’t you want to pull his hair? Can you imagine how fascinating it is to a baby?



Hans and Xander offered their hair for yanking but really, it’s just not the same.


Rather than hiking , we simply wandered; the boys found a natural teeter-totter that occupied everyone for an hour.


We forgot to look at our watches, drank sunlight, rolled in crimson leaves,


content to just be.
October 26, 2011



  1. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    “Content just to be.”

    Oh how I needed to hear that today. Physically and emotionally I am more spent than I want to admit. With my parents leaving the country in a few hours, I’m a bit of a mess. I’m going to give myself today to be sad and emotional and to cry.

    Then I am going to wake up in the morning and be thrilled for this wonderful experience they will have the next three years. And calm about the arrival of this baby boy, no matter when it happens to occur. And mostly, make the choice to be “content just to be.”

    Thank you sweet friend. How I adore you.

  2. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    Fall = all things apple. Try soaking the apples in pineapple juice before drying them. 🙂

  3. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    Josh and Sophie and I all need new books, so I’m dying to know which was the favorite and which of the others you’d also recommend.

    I need to work on being content just to be…

  4. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    My guess is “The Son of Neptune”. I know several of my 5th graders have been enjoying the book.

  5. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    Lizzy! You are right. It’s such a quick fun read that it flew through the household.

    Pineapple juice– what a fabulous idea.

  6. Reply


    October 25, 2011

    I smiled so many times reading this…wondering if “The Science of Kissing” was the most read book, Gabe’s face with the pie, the gift from your sweet mother, or the fact that she actually dried hot dogs. Hot dogs!! xoxo

  7. Reply


    October 26, 2011

    I how I love you my fellow homebody friend.

  8. Reply

    Mormon Women: Who We Are

    October 26, 2011

    Linn, I was such a wreck as my parents left for their three-year stint. You have my empathy.

    Michelle, this characteristic of your family is one of the things that I think makes your blog so much fun to read.

    As a homebody, I love reading about your homebodiness.


  9. Reply


    October 27, 2011

    Such a gorgeous post.

    And it taught me that Goliath is out! Yay!

    I have some books on the way to you – they will be well travelled by the time they reach you:)

  10. Reply


    October 27, 2011

    There’s no place like home. Love the big stack of books!

  11. Reply


    October 29, 2011

    These pictures are just gorgeous. And this is one of the things I love most about your pace as a family. You choose to just be. And you’re so good at it. I love you.

  12. Reply

    Kit Linkous

    October 30, 2011

    one of my all time favorite fall days. hands down. we love “just being” with all of you. I love love love the picture of the girls all walking together 🙂