Archive for the 'Overheard' Category


Can I Help? I am a Mathematician.

Saturday, April 19th, 2008

One of Mike’s favorite movie lines is from Finding Nemo. It occurs when the Ray says, “Can I help? I am a Scientist.” He uses that line a lot with the girls, sometimes replacing Scientist with Mathematician.

Mike loves helping the girls with their math homework so he will often ask them, “Can I Help? I am a Mathematician.” The girls are not as gleeful about math help from dad, partly because he likes to explain in detail the concepts and doesn’t let them slide with just “getting it.” He will often add more information than what they really needed. They roll their eyes. I think its great that he can give them extra help.

When the girls DO need math help, it is will trepidation they ask Mike for help. He smiles and gets that “oh this will be fun” look in his eyes.



Christmas Questions

Wednesday, December 13th, 2006
For some holiday spirit, I bought a box of Christmas questions. Our family has been reading a different question every night at dinner time. I am collecting the answers and writing them on the back of an highly decorated 4X6 card/tag. I plan to store them in a highly decorated box.

Here are a few samples of the questions and answers:

What gifts do we give on Christmas that do not come in a box?

Jackie – Love

Denise – Time together

Mike – Playing games

Jennifer – Things in your stocking

The birth of Christ is a story that has been told for centuries. What is an important story from your family’s history?

Jackie – the story of how the “Gormish” name came to be recognized in the United States

Denise – the birth of both our daughters and how God took care of us. Jennifer’s middle name is “Grace” because of how God was gracious to us in their births.

Here is a sample of a few of the highly decorated cards. The answers are on the backside in my handwriting. These cards feature flourishes and flowers, two of my favorites things, and Art Warehouse stamps.

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Rocks Rock

Thursday, October 26th, 2006

As we walked in Yosemite, I overheard Jackie exclaim, “Oh my gosh! I can’t believe I care what kind of rock it is!”

We’ve been to Yosemite numerous times, but the girls haven’t paid too much attention to the rocks. This time was different. The girls have been positively influenced by their school studies. In 2nd grade, Jennifer is studying rocks. In 6th grade, Jackie is studying geology. Both girls found it interesting to look at the rocks and minerals book I had brought along. They searched for all the igneous rocks they could find in the area including granite in Yosemite, pumice and basalt in Devil’s Postpile and obsidian at Mono Lake.

Mike and I were thankful for the interest in rocks as it saved us a few times from children on the brink of losing interest and whining to children who were interested in what they could find.

Q: What kind of rocks are the Gormish family members weightlighting below?



What’s for Dinner?

Saturday, August 26th, 2006

I hear this question every day and sometimes multiple times in a day. Jackie and Jenny love knowing what we will be eating in the evening.


When I answer, I often get an immediate reaction like “Yes!”, “Oh” or “Ugh.”
In July I tried several new recipes. When they asked, “What’s for dinner?” I often replied, “Something new.” These new recipes were often pasta dishes with foreign objects like broccoli or asparagus. These made the girls apprehensive. Then, there was the addition of garlic and other spices, which proved to be a bit strong for the girls. They did try everything, though.
Now when they ask, “What’s for dinner?” and I reply, “Something new” they just sigh.

July 2006


Unusual Weather

Friday, August 25th, 2006

Hot and dry.


That’s the typical July weather report for Colorado. In fact, as we arrived in Colorado, they were experiencing a drought. During our visit some relief came. It rained Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The temperatures were also much cooler than usual. Fortunately the rain only altered our plans a little. The Colorado natives kept telling us the rain and temperature was unusual but they were also glad for it.

July 6-8, 2006



Thursday, August 24th, 2006



  • What are your horse’s names?
  • What do you feed your horses?
  • How often do you ride your horses?

Jackie’s current fascination with horses led her to ask my friend Chris many questions about her horses. Usually shy with strangers, Jackie’s current horse interest enabled her to put that aside. She asked good questions and learned some new things.

July 6, 2006



Sunday, May 14th, 2006

Prayer is an important part of our dinnertime routine. One member of our family will always say a prayer before we start eating our dinner. Most of the time it is Mike, but sometimes the girls or I will volunteer.

Jennifer recently volunteered. It had been a happy day and she was feeling good. Earlier she had been looking at my scrapbooks and commenting on the pages. Most of the pages she enjoyed but some she did not. On one page she said, “Why did you have to write that?” It was about a time she didn’t get along with a friend. In the end, they had become good friends so I wrote about how they overcame their problems. She couldn’t see that. She just saw the conflicts and she didn’t want to remember those early problems.

I have always tried to be honest in my scrapbooks. Not only in the topics and events but, also, to include some moments that aren’t the best. Believe it or not, we do not live in a perfect world. Not all our stories are peaches and cream. On the other hand, I don’t excessively dwell on the hard times because our scrapbooks should also be fun. I try to be honest and balanced.

The evening of all of this Jennifer showed her own sense of honesty. When she volunteered to lead the prayer her mind still remained on those scrapbooks. She prayed, “Thank you that my mom scrapbooks even if some of the things make me sad or angry.”

How’s that for honesty?



Dinosaurs Good Dinosaurs Bad

Tuesday, April 11th, 2006

“I like the plant eaters,” Jennifer said definitively. “I don’t like the meat eaters.”

Jennifer has mixed emotions about dinosaurs. She likes the plant eaters and thinks they are the good dinosaurs. She doesn’t like the meat eaters, though, and refers to them as the mean, bad dinosaurs.

As we walked through the robotic dinosaur exhibit at the Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley Jennifer adored the plant eaters and cringed at the meat eaters like the T. Rex.

As we were leaving the exhibit, she said, “I want a picture of the dinosaur.” So, she took me back to the meat eater eating the plant eater. We took the photograph.


As we left she said, “I want you to write about how I like plant eaters and not meat eaters and put it in your scrapbook.” Gotta like her foresight for producing scrapbook material for me!


10-years-old and Waiting

Thursday, April 6th, 2006

I know it’s coming. Maybe it will be a few years. Maybe it will happen suddenly or maybe gradually. Regardless, those years of pre-teen and teenage behavior are coming. I am especially anxious about her relationship with Mike and I. It happens to all teens, doesn’t it? The “I know more than you” and “You don’t understand me” attitude. How will it play out? Jackie won’t like me or maybe she’ll think I don’t have anything worthwhile to say. Or maybe she’ll think I’m a nag or too restrictive. I know it’s coming.


Today I asked Jackie whom she felt she could trust telling anything. She named one friend’s mother, Mike and I. I felt special but told her I wished their were more adults with whom she felt comfortable talking.

“Why?” she asked

I hesitated.

“There may come a time when you won’t want to tell dad or I some things,” I said.

“Why would I do that?” she replied.

I told her about “teen attitude.” She laughed.

“That’s ridiculous!” she said. “You and dad have lived much longer than me. You know more than I. Why would I think I know more than you.”

Sigh. Is there any chance she’ll stay this same girl – loving us and trusting us?

Truly, we can only pray.