Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Obligatory Lemon

The lemon initiation. My mother-in-law thinks we are cruel, but each of our kids has received their first taste of lemon at our favorite restaurant: Hole-in-the-Wall BBQ. And not one of them would relinquish there hold on that lemon. In fact, each of them threw a fit when we did try to take it away. This is after 2 or 3 tastes of the lemon. This is the 4th picture, probably a minute into the taste test and the first pucker he made!

We finally convinced him to trade the lemon for a rib.

Crazy 2 x 4 cat

Can you tell what he is sitting on? Mark said that if we covered up the board, it would look like he was just a giant cat.
He is sitting on a 2 x 4 that is mounted on the deck to support our air conditioning unit in the summer months. Crazy cat!

What happened to the celery?

I was trying to make dinner and the girls were hungry. I offered them some celery, knowing that it wouldn't fill them up and there would still be room for dinner. I decided to give Tobias a piece that was about 3 inches long. He has no teeth, so I wasn't worried about him breaking off small pieces. I was surprised that he was willing to chew on it as the girls only recently decided that they like celery.

He was quite pleased with himself.And this is what was left over. Barely an inch. There was nothing else in his high chair or on the ground.
Can you believe he actually ate it? I couldn't. It also sent me searching for teeth. Still none yet. I will definitely think a little harder before giving him something I think is harmless.

Roller Derby Darlings in Training

My friends were teasing me about Child Services taking my children due to an onslaught of recent injuries, which inspired this posting.

Some of you may not know that I sing on worship team at our church. I had made it to practice and through the first service like normal. I left after we finished singing and went home to pick up the family. I helped everyone finish getting ready and we were actually ahead of schedule. I was getting Tobias' hat when I heard the screaming. Talk about having your heart leap into your throat. Apparently Isabella had her hands in her pockets (there were no injuries to her palms) and was jostled by Natalia enough that she fell on her left side. Words cannot begin to describe the disbelief and fear when I saw her left side covered, head to toe, in dirt and gravel. You could see the violet bruise through all the muck. Luckily, Mark iced it right away and once she was cleaned up, the injuries were not as bad as they first appeared. We were late to second service and I had to sneak back on stage during the greeting time.

Injury #2 happened later that night while I was going to pick up our babysitter. Natalia decided that it was the perfect time to shave her face. Four razor blade impressions on her forehead, two razor blade impressions on each cheek and a cut on her upper lip that wouldn't stop bleeding. I'm still surprised that we were brave enough to leave them home with the babysitter.

Injury #3 Neither girl seems to comprehend the lesson of the monkeys that they know so well. Natalia decided to emmulate them and received injury number three when she fell off her bed and on to only who knows what (it changes each time you ask them and depends on which girl you ask). She received several gashes on the bridge of her nose.

I imagine by now you can reason out the title of this posting. My attempt to cope with the new look with a twisted since of humor.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Treasured Memories

We have been busy, busy, busy these last two weeks. Instead of the calm, lazy days that mark the first of the year for us, we have been hosting family and driving back and forth to Albany. On January 8th, Mark's Grandfather left his earthly body for a new and glorious home. I am surprised by the abundant emotions I have been feeling. Usually, I am happy for the times we shared and glad that he is no longer suffering from cancer. (He was diagnosed late February 2008 and given only 3 months to live, what do they know?) I have found myself surprised by the tears that come, which are often more frequent than I expected. The hardest part is watching Mark's family grieve. I have always been an empathetic crier and this time is no different.

Errant emotions aside, I am astounded at the blessing and greatness that one life can be. Edgar Willard Overlin was born August 11, 1915 and was raised in South Dakota. He came to Oregon to go to the Bible Training school in Eugene and graduated in 1939. He then married Gilberta Pauline Hansen later that year in October. They went on to have 15 children (2 babies didn't make it, if they had, there would have been 17), 46 grandchildren, 49 great grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild. For those of you keeping count, that's 111 offspring! He devoted 40 years of his life to faithful service at a local nursing home and 23 of those years were also spent ministering at Solvang Retirement Center (where my maternal grandmother is currently residing).

He led a quiet life, but a life of purpose and direction. I am greatful for the time that my children got to spend with him and hope that they will continue to have memories of him as they grow. I think that this is the crux of my grieving - that my children are experiencing loss, even though they may not understand.

A few times Isabella has gotten upset and stated that she doesn't want to go to heaven. I can relate. I remember those same feelings when I was little and had lost a family member. I have assured her that I am not ready for her to go to heaven, nor am I ready to go to heaven yet, myself. I have told her that there are still jobs that we need to do here before we go to heaven, but that it is a wonderful place to go when it is the right time. In true 4 year old fashion, she insists that she needs to pack a bag and becomes quite distraught when told that Jesus will have everything ready for us. She has been a ray of sunshine for us.