For much of the past week, my thoughts and feelings have been focused largely on the loss of Snug. During this time, I've lacked the energy to keep up with posting Three Beautiful Things each day. These days have been hard, but not lacking in beauty or in goodness, so I'm going to go back and try to pin down Three Beautiful Things for each of them.
Three Beautiful Things 10/10/11: Conferences, Beef Stew, T'ao Chien
1. I had my first WR 121 conference and it felt really good to work closely with the two students I met with. I feel like a more authentic teacher in these situations when I'm working one to one or one to two with students.
2. That beef stew I put together last night? It sat in the icebox all night and today and was ready to be warmed up and eaten tonight. Rave reviews. We all loved it.
3. I always enjoy getting underway with old Chinese poetry and the nostalgic vision of T'ao Chien.
Three Beautiful Things 10/11/11: Chicken Noodles, Beauty Group, It Could Have Been Worse
1. I enjoyed figuring out how I would combine meat off of chicken thighs, egg noodles, mushrooms, and broccoli into delicious dinner.
2. Carolyn and I held our first group meeting on the subject of beauty at the Hockley's home and had a great discussion.
3. Snug's bit Sam hard. It could have been really bad, but Sam protected herself with her arm and Snug bit into her elbow. The good news? Sam is going to be all right. The wound is serious, will require stitches, but Samantha will heal and be fine.
Three Beautiful Things 10/12/11: Art Project, Snug's Last Outing, Leftovers
1. My students did art projects with "Drinking Alone by Moonlight" and had a lot of fun and did good work.
2. I had to get Snug out of the house and, as it turns out, it was our last outing. It was a gorgeous one. I kept him on the leash, but we went to a huge field on Willow Creek Road and Snug filled his nose with grass and ground scents, stuck his nose in little burrows and the roots of things, and had a great sensory experience. He was really happy.
3. That beef stew and those chicken noodles? Great leftovers.
Three Beautiful Things 10/13/11: Grief, Help, Sleep
1. The Deke and had decided in a short, decisive conversation that Snug would have to be euthanized. We both knew it before we said it and then my crying began, the deep grief. I didn't at all want to let Snug go, but I knew I had to.
2. The Deke helped me out. So did Adrienne. I was unable to call the vet to make an appointment to end Snug's life and their help helped me a lot. I'm eternally grateful.
3. Snug and I slept closely together all night.
Three Beautiful Things 10/14/11: Support, Debrief, Dinner and More
1. The Deke and Dr. Jones could not have been more sensitive to my grief nor more supportive of the decision to put Snug down. This meant the world to me.
2. After we left the vet, the Deke and I went to 16 Tons for drinks. It was a perfect way to sort out what had happened and was happening.
3. Later, the Deke, Sam, and I joined Jon and the Troxstar at Billy Mac's and the food and drinks and conversation were perfect: just what I needed. I'd seen the Troxstar earlier with Marla and our 16 Tons pal Emily at Brails. All of this was very good. So was going back to 16 Tons with Jon and the Troxstar for another couple of beers before going home. I really needed to talk and laugh and be with good friends. It all happened Friday afternoon and evening.
Three Beautiful Things 10/15/11: D. B. (Beak, Boney), Whiteaker Again, Return to Yi Shen
1. It was great to see Dale Bachman at Appleby's, helping keep dishes clean at the Springfield Lions' benefit pancake breakfast for a man about to have a kidney transplant.
2. Russell and I enjoyed our photo stroll. We returned to the Whiteaker neighborhood and when we were done, both of us thought returning for the third week in a row would be great.
3. Russell and I were back to our favorite post-photowalk dining spot: Yi Shen. My lemongrass fish plate was superb and I sure hope that today was the next of many weeks in a row that we are back at Yi Shen.
Three Beautiful Things 10/16/11: Symposium, Goddess, 16 Tons Get Together
1. Jared Talbot gave a fine symposium at St. Mary's on his faith experience as a scientist.
2. Emily is a beer goddess.
3. The Troxstar, Marla, the Deke, and I had a really good session at 16 Tons with Emily pouring. It was a really great time.
Three Beautiful Things 10/17/11: Campbell, Steak Sandwich, Stouts
1. I introduced my World Lit students to Joseph Campbell. I sure hope it worked for them.
2. I'd never been to Burgers on the Run down by the Wandering Goat on Madison and I had the steak sandwich. Great food.
3. I'd never tried either Southern Tier's Creme Brulee Stout or their Choklat Stout. Loved them both. Fun beer.