Tag Archives: justice

sleepy conversations

21 Jul

the little dude just came into our room, crying, “milk! i need milk!”

i took him back to his room, with a pit stop in the kitchen for a cup of moo juice. once we got back to his room and he drank his milk he started chatting me up.

“my teeth hurt.”

“i need more milk.”

a quick trip back to the fridge and he tripped my brain again.

“ah, that’s better.”

“my brain fixed it.”

“i had bugs in my brain.”

then, he talked to me like i was jilly, proceeded to explain that he thought i was jilly, and told me he was done and that i could leave.

all with a sweet smile and a laugh on his lips.

and a tug on my heart.

these simple moments are the reason i blog. so i don’t forget the sweetness in the midst of this crazy-whack-a-doo life.


blogger’s quilt festival 3

23 May

my boy's quilt

for the third round of blogger’s quilt festival, i decided to highlight my boy’s quilt since amy had a hand in making it through our quilting bee, a notion or 2.

i sent everyone a fat quarter and 2 fat eighths of numerous different fabrics. (i just counted, there were 12 different prints.) they could add fabric, but i asked that they only use yellow, orange, brown, tan and turquoise, with black and white being a given since they are in practically everything.

justice is into cars, robots, pirates & trains. i got back a ton of really great blocks. every time i looked to flickr, there was a new block and they blew me away. i did the entire third row. (the car, his name & the bear block.)

i collected them all in st. louis & brought them to the desert to piece them together. i originally planned on giving all the kids their quilts for chrannukah, but didn’t end up getting some of the girls’ squares back and didn’t have time to make more before we devoured presents. i ended up giving it to him for his 4th birthday.

i had a lot of coordinating material left over, so i squared up each block to 16 inches with the extras. it was already pretty big and i didn’t want it to be any wider, so i made rows of blocks and only added white sashing between the rows horizontally.


the back is a large log cabin made of my paternal grandma’s 2″ squares that i inherited & still more leftovers.

the back

i had been eyeing jay mccarroll’s germania since it came out (and now there are knits!) & the colors were perfect, so i snagged a couple of yards to shore up the back.

this was also the largest quilt i’ve quilted on my own. it was kind of daunting, but i managed to do it and think the free-motion quilting turned out pretty well. i’ve had some tension issues on the back side, but i just had my machine serviced and made sure to slow down a bit. so far, i haven’t had any stair-step issues like i did in the past.

the binding

for the binding, i used up almost all of the remaining scraps & really like the scrappy look.

my boy loves his quilt and i’m a proud mama for making it for him with the help of my friends. i hope to get it together to show off the quilts for the girls. which reminds that miss james will be 2 in 2.5 months & i need to get her quilt done! first, to move into the new digs. soon, hopefully, very soon.

on you at 4

14 Apr

i feel like i said it all last year.

but i know it’s not true.

there’s so much more dimension to you, my boy. you’ve grown millions of facets in the last year.

from a boy who whined when it was a school day, to a boy who bounds off to class, nary a thought of his mama left at the door.

you’re a sweet thing who shared his birthday chocolate from kadri with his sisters & even saved a piece for miss james who was napping. nevermind, that it started out as big as a crayon and ended up resembling a chocolate chip when she got it.

you would live in jimmie-jams, if i’d let you.
pee pie

you think shoes are needless.

you’re an A+ goof ball.
he can fold his tongue sideways

but you’re serious about spelling everything with me.

you can read some words all by yourself.
all up in my grill

you’ve just started drawing real pictures, instead of scribble scrabble.

you can write your name.
practicing letters

you have a penchant for telling stories, like your daddy and especially love those about powderpuff, the bubble-blowing, marshmallow-scaled dragon.

you’re your baby sister’s biggest pal.
like an old married couple

you worship the ground the big girls walk on.

daddy is your favorite, and i understand. he’s my favorite, too.
kisses in the pool

you still my heart.

happy birthday to you, my lovely little man. i love you to bits.



24 Feb

justice has come to our bed the last 2 nights. we would take him back, but once he’s up, he keeps coming back to our room every time we take him to his, so we don’t bother.

this morning, jamison woke up at 5:45 & i brought her to the bed to nurse. 10 minutes later, jilly comes in, which makes it a justice, jamison, me, jilly sandwich. (daddyjay had already gone to work.)

we ambled out of bed at 6:15 & left the boy to sleep some more. after waking scout, getting some breakfast, and sending the big girls off to catch the bus, the boy ran across the house butt-ass-naked.

i asked him if he peed (in my bed) & he said no.

“then, where are you pajamas?” i wondered.

“on the floor, ” he replied.

“why, pray-tell, are they on the ground, dearest son?” i thought, knowing full-well what happened.

i know what’s coming, but still wanted to see just how he handled it.

“i took them off because there’s water in your bed.”

he kills me. it’s these moments where i have no words.

grandpa fred: a series of posts highlighting old family photos and the stories they tell

26 Jan

on the water

my mom’s dad is somewhat of an enigma to me. i remember a warm character who loved us all quietly. only in my adulthood have i learned much more of the layers that is my grandpa. the one who shares an F with my son, as well as the middle name, for my justice is named after the family patriarch, fred justice, jr.

he came down with pancreatic cancer sometime in my 6th or 7th grade year. it was first time i remember realizing that these people i love who are older than me are not immortal. they will die off one by one and while horribly sad, i realized that this is what life is about. the culmination of our lives is our inevitable deaths.

the morning i went on the 8th grade beta club trip to dubois, i went to see him at the hospital. i don’t remember noticing an extra urgency when my mom asked me if i wanted to go see him in those pre-dawn hours, but she knew it was the end and wanted us to see the man who was much like a father to us. while on the retreat, we did a bunch of small groups where we talked about various issues. i sat in a circle of peers and cried about how my grandpa was sick and could die at any moment and how lucky i was to know him and to have seen him that morning. when she came to pick me up in the parking lot of casey junior high school at 3:30 that afternoon, i knew what had happened before my mom said, “grandpa died.” when i asked her when, she said it was about 10:15 am, exactly when i was speaking about him.


born an only child to fred, sr. & my own namesake, grandpa fred was afforded a comfortable life in small town illinois.

doesn't he look thrilled?

grandpa was a horribly handsome man, even as a young chap.

little gangster

i found out, as an adult, that he had been misdiagnosed as a schizophrenic when my mom was young and missed out on much of their lives. he spent days in bed and even lived with his parents for a time. when my parents got married, my dad, who is a doctor, thought that he was bipolar & once he was correctly diagnosed and medicated, he started to come back around to doing things he loved.

he's in the very middle

i asked my mom about him recently because i wanted to know more about him and felt like there was a gaping hole in his story. i knew he was in the armed forces, but i knew very little about what else he did in his life before me.


he worked at a refrigeration plant in indiana before rejoining the army. after they came back from being stationed in europe, he had trouble finding work, but did eventually work at a local factory and at one point delivered bread. his illness kept him from getting and keeping jobs, only because he wasn’t reliable.


grandpa was very athletic & had a lot of fun with the kids before the depression took over. he took and processed his own photographs. he sang in a barbershop quartet and was on a bowling team with his dad. he completed 2 years of college.

grandpa, john & mom

there is so much more to my grandpa that i never knew. he was much more than the silent teddy bear who wore cardigans, played tennis, smoked cigars on the back porch, took thousands of pictures, warmed the same spot in the same pew every sunday, and loved us with a smile that would melt my heart.


i never knew him as an adult, and, oh, how i wish he knew my kids. i can only ask for the stories, so that they don’t die out as well. even though my kids never knew him, i want them to know who he was and how important he was to me.

i love this one

new music monday, rosh hashanah edition

21 Sep

this past friday marked the beginning of the jewish high holiday of rosh hashanah. i’ll post more tomorrow about how we are trying to celebrate the holidays and our family’s jewishness (it’s a word, i don’t care what you say.)

let’s keep it short and sweet today by just singing our song.

this one is a favorite in our house. “i like to hear the shofar blast” is a fun song for the kids since they get to make silly sounds like the shofar.

my little dude helped me a little & we got a standing ovation off-camera from little lady james when we were done.

l’shana tova!

new music monday xvii

30 Mar

dude wanted to help me today, so here’s his first contribution. i’m not quite sure what the song is since he learned it at school. he calls it “cookie-oat.” anyone know it?

send me some requests. i’m drawing blanks here.

i’m also crazy busy with keeping the house clean. we like it to be perfect in case someone calls & wants to see the house at any time. we had a showing this after noon. they called at 2:02 to come at 2:30 and i was ready in 10 minutes. i was pretty impressed with myself, but justice didn’t get to take a nap. you gotta do what you gotta do.

justice rules

27 Jan

“the girls are crazy,” says daddy.

“they’re not crazy. they’re beautiful,” says he.

“you’re awesome, dude.”

“i’m not awesome. i’m cool.”

the christmas tree massacre of ’09

26 Jan

when justice was sick with strep throat, i heard a blood-curdling scream emanating from the front room.

“my pissmas tree! my pissmas tree!”

the trash guys were getting our tree from the curb.

he was crazy-upset.

see, they were putting it in the wood-chipper.

it was like fargo.

but worse.