Monday, March 7, 2011

10: The Grand Countdown

And The Grand Countdown is ON!

Only ten more weeks until my endearing husband wraps up four long, hard years of grad school.

Yesterday afternoon he and I had the opportunity to chat while we prepared Depression Era Pasta e Fagioli for dinner after our family movie. We had just finished watching The Diary of Anne Frank with the kids and walked upstairs to the kitchen with a slightly different perspective than usual.

As he sautéed the onion and I minced the garlic, a deep sense of gratitude and thankfulness overcame the both of us. In that moment it hit me like a ton of bricks that I sure have been doing a lot of complaining over the past few years as we've tried to figure out this grad school plus work plus family thing.

Pouring in the tomatoes to the sauce, he mentioned how lucky he feels to even be attending grad school in the first place. And I agreed. And I thought to myself that I'd like to take a moment to reflect on all of the good things that have been born of the sacrifices and commitment over the past four years.

I do believe a Top Ten list is in order.

Top Ten Things I Can Thank Our Grad School Experience For...

10. A deep sense of living in the moment—because the moments pass far too quickly around here—and our time together is precious.

9. My new motto, "Why not?" Wether it be a passion, a dream or a wish, considering the "What's holding me back?" question sets us on the right path every time.

8. Learning how to function (in a very basic way, mind you) alone in crowded public places with three kids.

7. Finally making peace with people snarling at me in crowded public places with my three monkeys in tow. Did I say snarling? I meant staring. But sometimes they do snarl, especially when one child is whining, the other is screaming and the last has transformed into a ferocious dinosaur. The grocery store clerks love me.

6. The realization that grocery shopping by myself at midnight feels like a privilege.

5. Functioning on a tight grocery budget—which has lead to beautiful creativity in the kitchen and a whole new repertoire of delicious dishes that the whole family is thankful for.

4. Understanding just how important our community is to raising a family. We can't do it all on our own.

3. Taking joy in the simple things. There is a lot of complicated stuff out in the world, but taking the time to find joy and peace in the simple things makes a big difference for how it feels on the inside.

2. Helping me realize how much I really do love being around my husband.

1. And making me all the more eager to fall in love with him all over again—once we are no longer ships passing in the night.

This is quite awesome. Watch it through folks—I promise you'll be smiling by the end—and it might help you think of a few things you are grateful for. First thing that comes to my mind... dancing.

Paul Simon - Me & Julio (on Sesame Street)


  1. you are wonderful ms. judith! And I have been meaning to tell you, Henry and I made your delicious chai once and will need to make a second batch today or tomorrow. We LOVE it and are so happy to think of you and your lovely family while we drink. Love to you all

  2. Soooo glad you love it. You are a woman dear to my heart, friend. And I'll be thinking of you while I drink mine. Let's have a transcontinental chai date tomorrow. 9am MST. We shall think of each other while sipping.


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