Friday, April 12, 2013

On This Date in 1998: Sunday, April 12

And what about the election, you’ve no doubt been wondering through the first four pages of this letter?  JoAnna called me last Tuesday evening around quarter to nine.  Her flat one of voice told me everything I needed to know.  The vote wasn’t even close – a 58/42 split, but then this Senate district is very strongly Republican.   For JoAnna, it was an uphill battle from the start.  She returned home fatigued, going to bed early Wednesday evening and, even this weekend, sleeping through most of Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
Yesterday I started one of my semi-annual projects:  cleaning the fascia, the horizontal band that circumvents the house just below the roof line.  It’s going to take me longer this year due to these tar-like little specks that attached themselves to portions of the west side of the house last fall.  I think these dark brown, almost purplish speckles are from the leaves of the silver maple trees that surround our house.  I feel as though Mother Nature has vandalized the house.  Using a scraper and very fine steel wool, I was able to remove the spots without damaging the paint finish.  Some days I wish we had bought a condo, a move I can look forward to after the boys leave home.
Today I cleaned the windows in the family room and replaced the storm windows with screens.  I also continued the fascia cleaning project.  My activity continued until 4:30, when the book on tape I had been listening to, The Deep End of the Ocean, concluded.  The author, Jacquelyn Mitchard, is a Madison resident.  It’s her first novel, and a phenomenally successful one.  Chosen by Oprah Winfrey as one of her book club selections.  A beautifully written book.  A very brief summary:  a 3-year-old boys is kidnapped in the bustling lobby of a suburban Chicago hotel and is reunited with his family 9 years later.  I’ll try to remember to enclose a couple of book reviews.
To please JoAnna, the boys and I attended 9 o’clock mass with her at St. Bernard’s here in Middleton.  We got there 15 minutes early and found the last open space of pew.  It was standing-room-only, and the church has a large sanctuary.
This afternoon, Jo interrupted her extended nap a few times to prepare dinner:  baked ham, scalloped potatoes, asparagus, salad, rolls – and cake for dessert.  We were going to cook the ham on the gill, but the charcoal was too damp; it took more than 45 minutes to fire up, and we wnate3d to keep to our original 5:00 mealtime.
Andy has a couple test to study for this week, language and science.  At 6 o’clock this evening, he claimed to be done with his homework.  “Yeah, right,” I said to myself.  So I quizzed him from the chapters he was being tested on in both textbooks and found his answers – his preparations – lacking.  His science chapter, “Characteristics of Matter”, is divided into three lessons.  Whenever he incorrectly answered one of the review questions at the end of a lesson, I made him reread that part of the chapter.  He re-read lesson 2, “Distance and Volume”, three times.  I closely supervised him for 90 minutes, an activity that JoAnna and I will need to continue until we feel that Andy can be trusted to do a complete review of his homework on his own.  He got a “C” in reading on his last report card, which means no sleepovers until school is out and, at the present time, no TV on school nights.  It’s time to be tough.

Hope you can read this.   I’m reclining on the couch in the living room, not suing the best posture for writing.

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