Friday, October 26, 2007

I'm glad we become civilized...

because we sure don't come here that way. Let me just share what my very uncivilized little loves did today. My poor mom had the misfortune to have taken Miles to the potty at McDonald's. While they were waiting for a free stall Miles, who had been fighting his urge for about 30 minutes, lost the fight and his stinky job somehow came out of his underwear and out of his long jeans and on the floor. I'm not sure how that happened. Mom was not too happy with me for sending her to do such a dirty job. Tonight, Eli had an absolute and ugly fit when we did not have a second chocolate donut with sprinkles to give him. This is actually somewhat understandable (I love myself some Krispy Kreme)! And Ella has decided that her new hobby (or maybe habit?) is licking the chair legs in the dining room. I cracked myself up thinking about how crazy it would be if none of us ever learned to be civilized. What a daunting task it sometimes seems to be to help our children eventually outgrow their childishness!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I'm just away down the river...

This Alison Krauss song reminds me of the last time I cried in front of Dad. It was our first night home after our last UAB visit. Mom and Dad both slept all the way home while I drove and cried. Cried and drove. I think I almost believed that if we went the other way or took a wrong turn or ended up anywhere else, he would be well and would be able to stay. But Dad wanted to go home so he could go Home. As he lay in bed that night, I laid my head on his chest. He let me cry for a few minutes as he ran his fingers through my hair and then said, "Oh, baby this is nothing new." Of course it was new, I'd never lost him before. But I sort of knew what he meant. This song made it so clear to me when I heard it yesterday that when he said that he meant... I'm dying, we've known it deep down for a while, but I'm just going ahead of you, I'll wait for you, you know I love you and I know you love me, we've talked it all out, you'll make it, you can do this, now...let me go...

Baby dry your eyes
There's no need to cry
Cause I'll see you again
It might be a while
Before you understand

I'm just away down the river
A hundred miles or more
Crossing over Jordan
To the other shore
I'll be standing waiting
With all who've gone before
I'm just away down the river
A hundred miles or more

Now the pictures on the wall
Will help you to recall
They're not there
To make you sad
But to remember
All the good times we had


When it's time to leave
You're gonna feel the mountain breeze
And the snow will fill the stream
And carry you to me


Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Sweet blue eyes...

Anita was experimenting with new backdrops today and took this very cute picture of my very cute Eleanor! I just had to post it. The green paisley seems to make those blue eyes pop.

If we were a family of pumpkins...

then this is what we'd look like. Eli and I thought it would be fun to paint the 5 little pumpkins I bought in a bunch to look like the 5 of us. As it ended up, I had great fun doing this mostly by myself, although Eli stood nearby to offer his opinions as he thought I needed them. That's him with the red mouth and scary triangle teeth! And notice Jonathan's different-colored eyes and Ella's bow. We are getting excited for Halloween - we'll have a robot, a spider man, and a little ballerina!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Ice milk?

Elijah has been reminding me of my dad lately. He has recently decided that he likes "ice milk." That is white milk with ice. Our waitress tonight was sickened by the idea. Chocolate milk has no ice, neither does his sweet tea. I'm not sure why he's suddenly so picky with beverages. My dad liked ice in his milk, usually alongside a hot dog. Disgusting, I know, and I really think the ice milk idea is pretty gross in and of itself. But I love that there are things about Eli that are like Dad. It's also in the way that when he's lost something he first asks me where it is before he even looks for it. I hope I will always find bits and pieces of my dad in my children.

I'm reminded of a dream I had some months ago. Everything was the same except that Jonathan and I were getting married again (I'm not sure why). I knew in the dream that my dad was gone. We were rehearsing for the ceremony, although a large crowd was already there watching. We were in an old cathedral. During the rehearsal, the door to the cathedral opened loudly and sunlight streamed in. Before I could look back to see who was there the minister said something like, "Oh, good. I knew you'd come." It was my dad and he was wearing what he always wore (short-sleeved, botton-up plaid shirt with khakis) looking like his old, healthy self. He hugged me as I sobbed uncontrollably. He took me to a small, private room to console me. When I looked up he was gone and I was at a nurses station in a hospital. The nurse asked me what was wrong and I told her that my dad was gone and that I couldn't see him. She said, "What do you mean? He's all around you."

I believe that dream was either from my dad or from God. I need reminders that Dad is still all around me. He's in my children. He's in my nephews. He's in my brother. He's in me. It's funny how the things that used to bother me now bring me comfort - like the ice milk, and the way I have several projects going at once, none of which are finished, and how my fingers and toes look like his. I'm always saying things he used to (like "not only no, but probably not"). And I find myself singing some old gospel songs he used to sing (like "daddy sang bass, momma sang tenor"). Do I now like old gospel? Absolutely not. But I like that it reminds me of my dad.

Daddy sang bass,
Mama sang tenor.
Me and little brother would join right in there.
Cause singing seems to help a troubled soul.
One of these days and it won't be long,
I'll rejoin them in a song.
I'm gonna join the family circle at the Throne.
Oh, no the circle won't be broken.
By and by, Lord, by and by.

I can still hear Dad singing this. I never paid attention to the words of this song until recently. I take this as another sign that Dad is still near. After all these years, teasing him for loving this song, now it is comforting me. Singing does help a troubled soul. And one day I will rejoin Dad in a song. By and by, Lord, by and by.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Gina tagged me to talk about my man, so here we go. By the way, this picture was taken back in July.

  • 1. Who is my man? Jonathan
  • 2. How long have we been together? About 14.5 years, but we've known each other for 18 years. Now I feel really old.
  • 3. How long did we date? We dated 4 years and were engaged a year and a few months.
  • 4. How old is he? 30
  • 5. Who eats more? It used to be him. Now, I'm not so sure. I hate this question.
  • 6. Who said "I love you" first? He did, very sweetly.
  • 7. Who is taller? He is.
  • 8. Who sings better? I do. (Thanks to the ACA Chorus, of course!)
  • 9. Who is smarter? My IQ falls under what I call the "painfully average" category. Let's just say his is several, several points higher.
  • 10. Who has more of a temper? His temper is worse but takes a little longer to bring out than mine.
  • 11. Who does the laundry? I do. I call it "pile management."
  • 12. Who takes out the trash? He does.
  • 13. Who has sharper computer skills? He does.
  • 14. Who sleeps on the right side? He does. Only because I'm closer to Ella's crib on the left. Soon it won't matter because we are FINALLY going to turn the playroom into her room.
  • 15. Who pays bills? He has since Miles was born. He'd love for me to take this job back, but I don't plan on it.
  • 16. Who mows the lawn? He does. Miles wants to.
  • 17. Who cooks? I do sometimes. I'm trying to do better.
  • 18. Who drives when we are together? He usually does.
  • 19. Who pays when we are out together? He does.
  • 20. Who is more stubborn? Good question. It's probably Miles. :)
  • 21. Who is first to admit it when they are wrong? Jonathan
  • 22. Who asked out who? I tricked him into going to homecoming with me.
  • 23. Who kissed who first? He tricked me into asking him to kiss me.
  • 24. Who is more sensitive? I wear my heart on my sleeve.
  • 25. Who has more friends? For the most part, my friends are married to his friends, so it probably evens out.
  • 26. Who has more siblings? He has 1 brother and 3 sisters and I have 1 really strange (but really great) brother.
  • 27. Who wears the pants? In a lot of ways we share the pants, but he is the true leader of our little family.

Now, I will tag the three people who knew us back before we were us - Erika, Carrie B., and Rebecca H.

Monday, October 8, 2007

A Dedication

This is another special song that is really carrying me along at the moment. It is Yesterdays by the group Switchfoot. They have a song for every part of my loss of Dad. One about never having hurt so bad and learning to crawl, to breathe again, and depend on God and one about how in 24 hours everything can change and this one. I love this one so much because it speaks to how difficult it is to let someone go, but how at the same time you know they are free. And they want you to keep living. I want to dedicate this post to my friend, Elizabeth, and her family at the passing of her Uncle Michael. He passed away yesterday after his own battle with pancreatic cancer. He fought for close to two years - amazing when you realize that 95% of pancreatic cancer patients die within a year of diagnosis. My dad lived 4 months, someone else I heard of lived 2 months, another lived just 8 weeks. My thoughts and prayers are with Elizabeth and her family. Michael leaves behind an 11 year old daughter. I urge anyone who reads this to please say a prayer for them.

Friday, October 5, 2007

I Am

This song is by Nichole Nordeman and has really been speaking to me lately. It reminds me that God is always, always near. Even when we don't feel him. Even when we don't believe he's there. When we question. When we wonder. When we hurt. When we can't understand what is happening in our lives. When we are overcome by sorrow. When we are overcome by joy. When we are exhausted at caring for our children. When we look into the faces of our children and see Jesus. And how amazing it will be to one day be "headed home!" Then we will know. We will see the big picture. We will love without fear. We will be with Love. What a promise...

Pencil marks on a wall I wasn’t always this tall,
You scattered some monsters from beneath my bed,
You watched my team win, You watched my team lose,
You watched when my bicycle went down again.

And when I was weak unable to speak,
still I could call you by name,
and I said “Elbow healer, Superhero,
come if You can,” and You said “I Am.”

Only 16, life is so mean, what kind of curfew is at 10 pm?
You saw my mistakes, You watched my heart break
and heard when I swore I’d never love again

When I was weak, unable to speak,
still I could call You by name,
and I said “Heart-ache Healer, Secret-keeper,
be my Best Friend” and You said “I Am.”

You saw me wear white, by pale candlelight,
I said forever to what lies ahead
two kids and a dream, with kids that can scream
too much it might seem at 2 am

When I am weak, unable to speak,
still I will call You by name.
“Oh Shepherd, Savior, Pasture-maker,
hold on to my hand” and You said “I Am.”

The winds of change and circumstance blow in and all around us
so we find a foothold that’s familiar,
and bless the moments that we feel You nearer.

When life had begun I was woven and spun,
You let the angels dance around the throne, and who can say when,
But they’ll dance again, when I am free and finally headed home

I will be weak, unable to speak,
still I will call You by name,
“Creator, Maker, Life-sustainer,
Comforter, Healer, My Redeemer,
Lord and King, Beginning and End, I Am, yes, I Am.”