Saturday, September 25, 2010

I Love Kindergarten

My daughter started kindergarten this fall. In the months, ok years, leading up to the first day of school, we consistently butted heads. I wouldn't necessarily call her strong willed but she is just as stubborn as her mom and dad.

And then kindergarten started. She has been such a joy and so much more easy going. She has some doctor appointments on Monday and we get to spend the entire day together. I am so excited!

Easy as Pie (and Jam)

I have a four day weekend and lots to do. I have grapes, apples, frozen peaches, frozen raspberries, red peppers, jalapeno peppers and tomatoes. My house is hot and humid from the canner boiling pretty much non stop the last two days.

I mentioned my activities on Facebook earlier today and my friend, Holly asked for my apple pie filling recipe. The recipe calls for ClearGel which my mother-in-law buys in bulk online and shares. I think this came from her USDA canning guide.

Here you go!

Saturday, September 18, 2010


Last spring I decided to go back to school, again, and work on a doctorate degree. Lately, I've been doubting that decision. I seem to be surrounded by very academic people, people with doctorate degrees that seem really smart. I listen to them and think, am I really smart enough to do this? What if I'm not? Can I really put together a valid, meaningful research project that adds to a body of knowledge? What if I just don't have the time or desire to do what it takes to research, write and defend a dissertation?

Tonight, I read this on one of the blogs I subscribe:

You can either do what makes you happy, or do what keeps you comfortable.

It was exactly the kick in the pants I needed.

If I don't do this, the world will not end. If I don't do this, our family will not starve. If I don't do this, our kids will still have two parents with three advanced degrees, and hopefully, grow up to see the value of higher education. If I don't do this, I will remain comfortable.

If I do continue, I will be challenged. I will be forced to consider other perspectives. I will have to stretch. And, I will be happy. Being in school, learning new things, and learning to look at things through different lenses make me happy. Yes, I am a dork. But at least I'm a happy dork.

So what if I don't sound as smart as the others I'm around? I'm a bit rusty with the school and theory stuff. And, the last thing I ever want anyone to do is compare themselves to me and think, "Gosh, I can't do that because I'm not as smart."
So what if I join the 50% of people who start but don't finish a doctorate degree? My family won't starve. I'll still be employable. I'll still be able to do work I enjoy. I'll have a broad range of knowledge, I just won't have the research experience and the credential. It will be ok and I will be a better, happier person for it.