Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Another Life-Time Skill

Since The Readership has been notably silent about my invitation to identify life-time skills (Sugarfoot gets a gold star for her contribution that reading is a life-time skill,) a patient that I saw today offered one up for consideration.

I had inquired about her occupation and she responded that she was working part-time, which gives her time to spend with their newly acquired horse. I asked if she had been riding very long and she said that she grew up caring for her horse and that she wants her children to have that opportunity, too.

She went on to say that feeding the horse twice a day, grooming and exercising him/her, teaches a child responsibility. That the relationship that one develops with the horse gives the child a sense of compassion. In essence, caring for a horse during childhood and adolescence is great preparation for adulthood.

I’ve never cared for a horse, but I think that we have to add this to the list.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


The cool weather has knocked out the tender zinnias, but semi-perennials such as these thrive. I started them by seed in March and they’ve putzed along until now, when they’re finally coming into their own. I think that I’ll try to let the plants winter over—although the last time I did that with Snaps the whole crop contracted an ugly virus and shriveled up in midsummer.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Here He Is

In response to P's request that he see his Chewbacca costume again, here he is, thanks to the magic wrought by my techie husband.

Life-Time Skills

In my response to Kathryn's recent entry about learning to use HTML code, I noted that although I’m not familiar with it, I think that knowing such code has to be a handy life-time skill. Which led me to consider what else I believe to be life-time skills, i.e., skills learned only with lots of practice and later reincarnated to serve one in other ways.

For example, learning to type is a life-time skill that I acquired when I was in high school. In that pre-computer age, my only reason for doing it was to be able to type papers for future college assignments. Little did I know how eminently practical the skill would become some 40+ years later. Now I type, not only at home on my laptop, but am finding myself using it increasingly more often at work, as my department converts to electronic medical records.

Another category of life-time skills is sewing. My first awkward sewing projects were two corduroy skirts that my mother paid me $5 each to make for myself. It was an inspired idea on her part and it introduced me to the advantages of making my own clothes. But even more, I now have the skill to make most anything that can be sewn—often as presents for family and friends.

A third set of life-time skills are prepared childbirth techniques. I tell my patients that learning to distract oneself using relaxation and effleurage will stand them in good stead for years to come. Whenever I have invasive dental work, which I absolutely hate (having endured 3 teen-age years of orthodontia,) I use both techniques to help me get through the pain.

I could go on and on, but I’d like to know what my Readership see as life-time skills--

Saturday, November 05, 2005

The Devil Cometh

By popular request, Dennis has recreated an image of P in his Devil’s costume. I was able to purchase a used duplicate of the pattern that I used, so in case Johan or one of his cousins wish to be a devil at age 6, I’ll be able to create the outfit again.

I’m still puzzling as to what we did with P’s original devil costume. My best guess is that we passed it on to another family after he refused to be embarrassed yet another year by a fake pitchfork on his chest.