We are starting a tradition here in our home and having our First Annual Labor Day Rib Fest! I found a recipe on the CrockPot Girls' Facebook page for slow-cooking baby back ribs for 8-10 hours (using a brown sugar, garlic, salt and pepper rub and cooking them with sliced onions and a can of Coke) and then basting them with BBQ sauce and running them under the broiler for a few minutes. I'm salivating just typing this! Marty and I thought it would be fun to always have BBQ ribs on Labor Day -- sort of giving a tribute to summer as we say goodbye to it for the year.
It's pouring outside or we'd try to get the kids out to the park, but instead we are enjoying a lovely quiet day indoors, just reading and watching cartoons with the kids. Honestly, every weekend should be 3 days: one day for chores and activities (Saturday), one day for worship and rest (Sunday), and one day for just being together (Monday)! Perhaps I should start a lobby for this...
As I sit here with my family, here's what's on my mind:
- We had a fabulous experience at the new church yesterday. The security measures for the kids were incredible: kids are given a numbered tag to wear on their clothing, and parents are given matching numbered tags on a wristlet to wear. Then, parents are given pagers set on vibrate, so you can be summoned in case of emergency (or even just a meltdown). THEN, all entrances and exits are kept locked, with church members monitoring the doors at the beginning and ending of services to let parents in and out. When you sign kids in, you're asked for names, ages, allergies (awesome!), special concerns/requests, etc. All of this would be great but throw in the fact that the nursery workers are just *so nice*, and you have a perfect atmosphere for parents to leave their precious babies for a bit so they can go worship without worry. What a gift! We went to the early, contemporary service (I was hankering for some P&W songs) and we were done and pulling back into our garage at 9:55 a.m. Having grown up doing church *all day long*, I loved this. No offense to anyone who chooses to do church activities all day, but it's not for me and it's my personal opinion that you can't get the rest that God intended for Sundays at that level of involvement. Anyway...the only thing I would have appreciated more would have been a more theologically challenging sermon, but the pastor did a great job on his chosen topic of angels. We're definitely going back next week!
- I'm on a bit of a Thomas Jefferson obsession kick (this is what nerds do, by the way; pick a topic and read endlessly until the obsession naturally tapers off). We watched our second documentary on TJ last night (thank you, Netflix) and of course I proceeded to dream about some of the things I'd heard and seen. For example, one of the commentators said that no other president is so tied to a geographical location and home as TJ is to Virginia and Monticello, and that no other presidential home is such an accurate reflection of the man's identity. Anyway, I dreamed that Marty and I were building a home and that I was being very particular on each and every detail, because I knew this would be our "forever home" and I wanted everything just right. I think this has always been my dream but watching the documentary really helped hone that dream. You see, Jefferson had gone out into the world -- he lived in New York, Boston, and Paris, besides Washington, D.C. -- and he'd made his indelible mark as President. And even though he loved his work, he would become exhausted by it and want to retreat to his home. He went through cycles of work and retreat throughout his life, until his retirement, which was a 17-year retreat at the end of his life, said to be his happiest years. I love this idea: that we all have work to do and a contribution to make, and that we should live in (or at least see) other places and do important things, but always to have a home to return to. I want this for us and for our kids, and Marty and I have talked about it and decided that we're happy renting various places until we're ready to commit to *the house*. It doesn't have to be perfect -- we've got a renovating itch thanks to HGTV -- but we'll buy as long as we like the location and the bones of the place. And we're not going to buy until we're ready! So, thank you TJ, for that.
- Funny, I thought I'd have more than 2 bullet points of thoughts, but I don't! I've got my nose in a book about Jefferson (shocker) and laundry going, which needs some attention now, come to think of it. So, that's it from me for today. I hope everyone has a lovely holiday spending time with family and friends!