In The Animal Kingdom…

If you read our blog often, you know we frequent the library. While there a few weeks ago, we checked out this board book titled Babies on the Go. I just loved its theme and purpose. When you read it, you encounter all sorts of animals, seeing how they carry their young. Some on back, some in their mouths, some by the baby’s nape, and some even in pouches. The words even rhyme, so it is a fun read. When you get to the end, it shows human babies, displaying many of the methods by which they travel. Underneath the images are the final words “No matter how babies go, they always ride with love.” Sweet, isn’t it? True too, I would hope. Why is it then that we humans  have a judgment on how babies journey? There is certainly judgment in how mom’s/dad’s carry their children, and I am sure if you are a parent you might have heard it or seen it. I am currently thinking of the movie Away We Go.

Yeah, I figured not many of you have seen it, so here is the gist (side note: Jim from The Office and the SNL chick are not their typical TV selves. They are crass and the opening scene is a sexual one, so if you decide to watch it, be forewarned.):

It is just a stroller, right? But, we humans can’t let it be that simple. We have to make it more. Instead of just a mode of transportation moved with love, it is a way of pushing babies away.

I had a friend tell me, in a conversation about a car seat, most specifically the one with the infant carrier, that she and her husband are not “those kind of parents.” It seriously baffled me. And just what kind of parent is that exactly? One that perhaps values a sleeping baby? Or perhaps one that has the baby ride in more than one car out of necessity? I am just not sure.

Might you hear it now, in the animal kingdom, “Can you believe they are the kind of parents that carry their baby on their backs? Wow. There is seriously something wrong with them.” “Did you see that mom over there? She has her baby on her tail! So glad we are not that kind of parent. We use our mouths, which is a much better style of parenting. Yeah for us!”

It seems pretty silly doesn’t it. I doubt the kangaroo is saying such about the crocodile. The opossum cares not about the bat.

Why, then, do we? After all, we are suppose to be the more enlightened and reformed ones.

I don’t care if baby travels by mother’s heirloom Moses Basket or futuristic hovercraft stroller.

Count me into the league of no matter how babies go,

“babies always ride with love.”


On Wesley

It seems I need to tell you something about my little man: he is all too adorable and simply melts my heart ♥ ♥ (along with sometimes exhausting me!)

(love how you can see his two toned eye in the image above)

And if you are my friend on FB, you might have already seen this one, for it brought about some thoughts on baby wearing and some good laughs on cake eating, not to mention Wesley’s expression:

Set Your DVR

In case I have not told you personally I wanted to let you know: My brother is going to be on ABC’s Show Dating in the Dark on Monday, the 30th of August, at 9PM CST! If you go to the link for the show above, he is currently on the “After Dark” commentary that plays automatically.  He is the first guy you see, named John, and if you know him at all, it will surprise you not that he asked a girl to leg wrestle! So, don’t miss it! Set your DVR or, if you are like us and you do not have one,  just make sure you are home to see this show! It is silly “reality” television, but it can certainly give you a good laugh. Plus, you will know someone on it, so what do you have to lose???? Exactly: nothing at all, my friend; nothing at all.

Had it been me to decide a reality show, I would sign up for Colonial House, which aired on PBS in 2004. My friend Eric from college convinced me to watch it with him and I was hooked. I wanted to be there too! We would get together and watch it, soaking up the show. I know it sounds crazy wanting to be back in colonial times, 1628 to be exact, but I have always wanted to try living and thriving in that time and place. Too bad it only aired for one season :o/. With that one out of commission, I would have to go with The Colony, which is currently airing on Discovery. My friend from college, Jonathan, introduced me to this one. I like the idea of trying to survive and thrive in extreme or unconventional situations, so this one again is up my alley.  Unlike Survivor (which I have never watched; it premiered when I was out of the country for a month, so when I returned everyone was watching it and I was out of the loop) there is no vote you off drama, which is nice.

How about you? In what “reality” show would you want to participate?

Taking Care of Me, While A Long Way From Home

It’s hot folks. I don’t really have to tell you that, I am sure, for if you live in the US, you are aware that a heat wave has been all over the nation. But, yeah, it’s hot, and when it is this hot, you really shouldn’t decide to run, while it is over 90 degrees outside. And if you do decide to run when it is over 90 outside, you just really shouldn’t get the gumption to run 8 miles; just sayin’. But if you are like me (a.k.a.- hard headed and determined), if you set your mind to run 8 miles on a Saturday, you are going to make it happen, even if you did not wake up early and set off much sooner, when it was cooler.

So, yeah, that was me a week ago: stupidly running in 90 something degree weather on a route that made an 8 mile circle from and to home.

It definitely was not one of my brightest ideas, but it was an idea that I executed.

While I was running, I was talking with God, which is one reason why I need to run. I was keeping a good pace too, I might add, despite the heat. The heat and lack of shade or breeze, however, was beginning to get the best of me, and I was beginning to wonder if I should just stop. While one foot pounded the pavement in front of the other, I realized that stopping would just prolong the process of getting home, for the quickest way back home was to keep running the loop.

I soon came up with a hope: Perhaps I will see someone I know and he/she can take me home. Solution found! Alas, about a mile and a new wind later, I realized that I was going to be just fine and able to finish soundly. So, step by step I continued.

About half a mile later, I saw someone I knew. Mr. L stuck his head out the window of his truck and yelled, “You are a long way from home!” To which I responded, “Yes, and I came from that way!” while pointing to signify that I was making a loop and was really far from home. “Are you okay?” Mr. L asked. “Yes,” I replied, “just hot!”

As he drove off and I keep striding, it dawned on me that I could have asked him to take me home! I had let the opportunity pass, but in all actuality, I did not need the ride anymore, for I only had 2 miles left and I knew that 1 1/2 of it was going to be my first bit of shade. What I really needed was water. I then mentally kicked myself for not asking Mr. L for some, for I know full well he would have driven to his house, gotten me some, and then drove back to find me again.

As I pondered the water that I could have almost had, I realized how badly I wanted needed it. Again, it was over 90 and I was at this point about 6 1/4 miles into a run of just over 8. I had been thinking the whole run of how if someone had one some sprinklers, I could just run into one of them, lap up some water, and keep right on the journey. Suddenly, as I approached a vacant warehouse at the end of my road, I saw a lovely sight: multiple sprinklers spraying crystal clear and cold water! You better believe that I picked up the pace in order to get to it.

I bent down and managed to gather some water in my cupped hands in order to drink. I felt a little silly, but the small amount of water I was able to obtain was priceless in the heat. The spray of the water over my face and arms as I drank was so refreshing. I only consumed a bit, but it would be enough to help me pound out the last two miles, keeping with my pace.

As I finished off the final leg of my route, everything suddenly clicked. I now saw the perfect spiritual application. Bear with me as I give you a spiritual repeat….

Sometimes, you set out on a path or journey that is really not the best choice. It is working toward 100 and only a crazy would choose to run in that heat. You know better, but you are too stubborn to say no. So, you go.

While going, even though you were the idiot, God still has your best interests in mind. Just when you think you can not go any longer and you want an out, you keep staying the course because you really have no other choice, and God sustains you. He then sends people along the way to check in on you, to offer support. A few miles back you would have given in but since you pressed on past the moment of weakness, you do not need it. Instead, you just appreciate the concern.

And when you are thirsty, God hears you. He does not give you a stone. Instead, he quenches your thirst, even though you were the fool that set off without a plan for water.

He’s looking out for you, even when you are the one with the bad idea and in the wrong. He does not rest, but He watches your steps, He sings over you, and He wants you to trust His provision so that you will not be weak.

That’s right my friends, I’m the one completely in the wrong and He still did not leave or forsake me. What a mighty and good God!

And He does it all while I am a long, long way away from my true home.

i ♥ faces- Surprise!

So I know this is not the best quality of a photo but it fits the theme of SURPRISE! all too well:

What’s in that bag and why such a look of shock? Well, it is our first positive pregnancy test, and Thomas had no clue that it was coming his way, as part of his birthday celebration. It was perfect timing and such an awesome moment, being that I knew what was in the bag and I was ready with camera in hand. There was a second photo right after this one that was full of glee but I had to choose just one, so I went with this one. I mean, just think of the surprise of first opening a silly DVD and then the next package tells you that you are going to be a daddy…….Surprise!

Be sure to see how other folks have captured a surprising moment:

**edit to add–this was taken 4 years ago this past March when we discovered we were pregnant with out first child. I am NOT pregnant now :O)

*Just Like Popcorn*

Recently I went to a going away party for a college friend that was moving across country. Part of the celebration was attending a comedy show. The guest comedian the weekend I was there was Frankie Paul. There were three others that night, but he was the headliner that received the most time, and he was by far the funniest comic. One of his most humorous routines was on children.

Frankie claimed that kids are like popcorn, in that as long as you can hear them, all is well in the world. The moment they stop making noises, just like kernels popping in the microwave, you know you are in trouble and about to get burned. He then began a reenactment, in which he was 3 characters: parent, child 1 and child 2. Imagine him physically modeling the parent, slouched back clicking an imaginary remote control. In two different tones, he is having a child 1 and child two conversation, all with no pause between comments (I do not remember the exact words, this is just all along the same line of thought as his set): “Let’s play blocks; blocks are fun; ohhh look, dinosaurs; give me a hug; you have  a booger; wow, that’s tall; that’s mine!; no mine!; mine!; mine!; i love you; your feet stink”…………(silence)…………–he now switches to parent voice– “You kids better start making some noise!!”–back to kids– “My eye! My eye! You poked my eye! I’m bleeding. Ouuuuuccchhh!!!!”

Being that I was the only one from our little crew with kids, they were all looking to me for affirmation, and even though I did not say anything, I was laughing so hard, I think they got the point. Now, that was funny in and of itself, but it was compounded by what had happened to me just the day before.

See, I was letting Daniel and Wesley play in Daniel’s room without me present. This is a special treat because I close the door, being that I do not want Wesley to try and come down the stairs. They were playing so well, and I was patting myself on the back, marveling at how much I was actually getting accomplished while my two kiddos played like loving little brothers. I heard the laughs and then some silence, at which point I should have known much better. I gave them a few more moments. Turns out, they are just like popcorn, for the silence meant a stink was about to come. They had officially taken every single toy, book, and stuffed animal Daniel had in his room and put them all over, in every corner and spot.

just. like. popcorn.

Standing on the Street

Note: This is an old post form April 2007. I have copied and pasted it, along with a few comments from the original, into this WP blog. Thomas and I have moved twice since this was first posted. Tomorrow, in my new community, the same situation is suppose to occur. I do not think I will be in attendance but the talk of the event has had this past experience on my mind and in my heart.

Today, Daniel and I stood on the street. I realize that this phrase sounds funny but it is exactly what we did. We were not alone, however, nor were we doing anything bad. In fact, we were showing support. See, a soldier from here died while in Afghanistan. They were bringing his body home and residents of his hometown were supporting his family and thanking him for his service. The entire street had flags stuck in the ground, near the sidewalks. Businesses on the processional route flew flags at half-mast, and many also displayed posters of support. Kroger’s even blew up red, white, and blue Kroger balloons. Nearly every marquee on the road had the same saying:

Remembering Our Hometown Hero

I did not know him, nor do I know his family. I heard that he went to our church, but with him serving his tours in Afghanistan and our church being so large, I did not have the privilege of meeting him. Regardless, something made me want to go and stand there on the road for support. I am not sure how this shows support but it was all I knew to do. As the cop cars flashed their lights and people held out their own flags, the white hearse began to slowly come into sight; you could hear a pin drop. As I fought back tears, I looked around and saw that others were not holding them back; they were letting them fall without shame. I wondered if they knew him or if they were just attempting to show support, like me. After the last emergency vehicle passed the bystanders, everyone began to make his or her way back to the daily routine. As I loaded Daniel into his carseat, I continued my prayers for the family, along with prayers for all those I know in military service, plus those that I don’t know. As I drove away, I saw an electronic billboard with a screen dedicated to this soldier. It showed his picture and I noticed that he looks so young. The screen changed and it had his picture again, along with his birth and death years 1985-2007. He’s younger than me. He leaves behind a wife. My heart goes out to her. I could not imagine losing my husband, especially in such a tragic way.This experience really puts some things into perspective.

I Googled his name and read some newspaper articles to get a bit more information. Here are a few lines that struck me:

  • “He loved serving his country,” she said. “He just was a really good person. He loved being in the Army. He believed in what he was doing.”
  • “He was a real soldier,” his mother recalled. “He believed in his country and he believed in God.”
  • June would have marked his third year in the Army, and two weeks ago, he signed up to serve for another six years, his mother said.

Praise God for amazing men and women like him. Praise God that the fallen Sgt. knew Christ as Savior. May God continue to keep all the soldiers safe……but if another amazing soldier falls, may the community come out, stand on the streets, and cover the soldier’s family with prayers as they attempt to heal from their loss.