Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Memorial Day.....In Memorium

(My personal dedication: For those who lost their lives fighting for our Country so that we can enjoy the freedoms that we have today. Freedom which we often take advantage of and the same freedom that others are constantly trying to take away from us. For the sacrifice of the Service Men and Women currently serving our country and the families that they have left behind. For those children who lost a parent or a parent who lost a child. For that friend and loved one we grieve and mourn and the stories we tell so that we will never forget.)

My first memory when I became aware of death was when I was about 10 years old. My Sunday School teacher and wife of our Home Teacher, passed away. She left behind 3 children and a small three-legged dog. It makes me ponder my own mortality since she was about my age when she died. I remember her husband took her death very hard. I don't think I saw him at church much after that experience.

The summer after my Sophomore year of High School, my biology lab partner drowned in a swimming pool. The beginning of my Senior year, my friend who rode the bus with me to school was sadly run over by that same bus and killed. I remember getting on the bus the next day and subconsciously listened for the buzzing sound of music coming from his headphones. But it was quiet. Eerily quiet.

When I was in my twenties, I was at a friend's house borrowing his computer to type up a lesson for the next Sunday. He and a couple of his roommates left to go get something to eat. A few minutes after they left, I heard the front door open again. I yelled out something like, "Forget something?" But no one answered. I said, "Hello? Who's there?" Still no answer. A couple of minutes later the front door shut again. I got up and looked to see who it was but they were gone. The next morning on the radio, I heard about a young man who was found dead in the bleachers of the College stadium with a self-inflicted gunshot wound. My friend called me and asked if I had heard about it. He then told me that it was his roommate and that he used his other roommate's gun. He was the one who came in after the others had left. That's why he didn't answer me. Looking back, I often wonder if maybe I had intervened, he wouldn't have taken his life that night. But realistically, I'm grateful for the prompting to stay in the room I was in and that I didn't get up to see who it was sooner than I did. It scares me to think what state of mind he must have been in and the possibility that my life could have very easily been in danger as well.

I lost another friend who died so that her baby girl could live. She died of pre-eclampsia when she was 7 months pregnant. I was about 4 months pregnant myself with my first and remember feeling so sad for her family and for her daughter who would never know her mother in this life.

I lost an Aunt who I hope will now be receptive to the eternal blessings she deserves.

I lost a Grandma. She wasn't just any Grandma. She was the only Grandma I really ever knew. And she was the last of my Grandparents. She was supposed to live longer than she did. Atleast I thought she was supposed to. She was supposed to see my kids grow up and have kids. I remember the night I got the phone call that she had passed. I was in my bathroom getting ready for bed when all of the sudden, I felt a cold, rush of a breeze pass behind me. It was so noticable that at first I thought it was the air conditioner turning on through the vent. But I looked up and noticed it wasn't even on. Then instantly I thought of Grandma. Even though I couldn't see her, I could feel her standing next to me. I smiled, looked in the mirror and said, "Thank you! I love you. It's ok. You can go." And I was at peace.

My husband lost his first wife and friend of mine over 10 years ago. We went to the cemetary yesterday to leave flowers for her for Memorial day and also because it was her birthday. We've explained to our children who she is and they call her "Auntie Lynette". As we were driving out of the cemetary, we could hear Lauren whispering in the back seat. She told us that she just said a prayer to Heavenly Father to keep Auntie Lynette young.

Then she whispered, "I miss you Auntie Lynette".

How thin the veil is. And how powerful and humbling is the faith of a child.

-"A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself" Joseph Campbell

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Today is your Birthday......da na na na na....

My baby is one. I can hardly even believe it! You'll have to excuse the trip down memory lane and the nostalgia talk. But I really just can't believe a whole year has come and gone! ( sniff sniff )

One year ago I looked like this:

Then this ( I guess if I can post a picture of my husband's split pants, I can post a drug induced state of euphoria picture of me):

Then he looked like this:

And now he's grown up to look like this:

And this:

And this:

And I pretty much look the same.

So we had a party. Any excuse for a party, right? We threw him a "Happy First 'Bee-day' Party".

This was the cake I made:

Luckily, I decided to decorate most of it the night before since the pipe to our water softener decided to spring a leak....Memorial Day weekend....when customer service at GE is apparently closed. And the only human we could talk to at some mom and pop repair shop told us they were surprised because that part doesn't usually break. ( thanks. ) So, until my husband could get a "band aid" to fix it temporarily which took about four hours the morning of the party, I would never have been able to finish it in time. But, we got water back up and running, thank goodness, 'cause there were some people in our household who were in serious need of a shower. ( Like me )

Good times.

Each "first birthday" my kids have, I can't help but think that there is some correlation between the way the child eats their piece of cake and the glimpse into their future personality.

My first daughter would hardly touch the cupcake. She just used her finger and very daintily, picked at the cake. She always has been very careful and methodical about things.

My next son was cautious at first and then once he realized the cake actually tasted pretty good, it was a matter of seconds before it was smeared all over his face. And clothes. And mushed in his ears and diaper. He definately has his moments where he likes to test us with his defiance and head-strong behavior. He often will say "I don't like that" without even trying it first. Then after some coaxing, he'll try it and odds are the next thing out of his mouth is, "I LIKE it!" Of course, it could be because he's three....

Erik was a sucker. He sucked the frosting right off the cupcake. He didn't really care much for the cake part itself. Just the frosting. Maybe that means you'll be sucked in by his sweet, charming ways? Either that, or he'll be a brown-noser.

He has yet to really play with any of the toys he received. For some reason baby toys appeal to almost 4 and 6 year old children more. Luckily, he hasn't figured out yet that he's supposed to care.

On to a new year of milestones! ( And four more birthdays in the next 3 months! )

Monday, May 15, 2006

YAY! I've been tagged!

Good thing cause I've had blogger's block for over a week now! I'm going crazy!

Thanks Lee for the tag.

Two for Togetherness Tag

2 Things you compliment your husband on while in his presence.
His legs
His brains

2 Compliments you make to your friends about spouse.
He buys me QT Cokes everyday after work!
He's great with the kids

2 Traits you married him for.
His kindness
He was my best friend

2 Days you cherished the most with your husband being together.
Our wedding day
Our babies birthdays

2 Material things you would give to your husband if you just inherited a forture.
The most expensive cell phone on the planet
His very own Coke fountain machine

2 Things you would miss the most if he left for two weeks.
Already know....
Sleep. Because I can't sleep if he's not in bed
Bedtime help. He's always so great getting the kids to bed

2 Thoughts that crossed your mind when you first met/saw your spouse.
Well....let me preface this with we didn't just "meet". We knew each other for years before we dated so....my first thought was probably:
He's my friend's geeky brother ;)
and later on he came to me for advice about kissing because he was going to make the move on his girlfriend but didn't know "how" to kiss. I just remember thinking, "Oh please don't tell me you want me to show you!" ick.

2 Favorite dates
The night he proposed
Horseback riding on Valentine's Day

2 Funny odd things that you love.
His love of techno-gadgets
His love of tv shows that talk about said techno-gadgets

2 Places you have lived with your spouse.
An icky apartment for the first year
Our new house we built

2 Favorite Vacations.
Maui! Honeymoon
Our first cruise together

The Spare Pair

I've learned that it's always good to have a spare.

I'm glad that I had a spare mailbox key because the original one made its way into the 1/8th of an inch crevice in the glove box when I threw it in after getting the mail one day. As did the spare of the spare before I realized that there even was a crevice in the glove box. So, both keys are sitting in some inaccessable hole in my glove box until I can find the right tool to take the glove box apart and get them. So I now have a key that is a spare of a spare of a spare.

Spare tires are always a good thing to have too. Except for the one that is hanging around my abdominal area. I could do without that one. But, I do like the fact that the spare tire for our SUV is actually the size of a real tire.

Spare change is good for those times you are standing at the checkout with two 44 ouncers and realize you forgot your wallet. Because then you have to drive 7 miles back home to get your wallet and drive back another 7 miles to the Quik Trip and with gas prices the way they are......you end up paying $100.00 for a fountain drink.

Getting three kids ready plus yourself for, say, a Doctor's appointment and actually arriving with a few minutes to spare? That's good too.

A spare child or two is nice as well. And no, I don't mean it in the "William and Harry- the Heir and a spare" kind of way either. I mean, when you're bathing the baby and you forget a towel, your spare, or "extra help", can go fetch you one.

My three year old is pretty much potty trained. He has had an accident or two on very rare occassions usually when he is at a friend's house and mistimes getting to the bathroom. To avoid embarrassment on both of our parts, I usually give his friend's mom a ziploc bag with a spare pair of underwear and pants. Just in case. You never know.

Which brings me to my point.

I was on the phone with my husband the other day. He had just returned from lunch and mentioned to me that a co-worker informed him that he had a tear in the back of his pants. My husband realized the extent of the tear while he was talking to me. He kept repeating, "Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh!" I sensed it was more than just a split seam. I wondered if the miscellaneous junk that he carries on his person every day finally deteriorated his back left pocket.

It wasn't until he mumbled something about duct tape that I realized I underestimated his predicament.

He called again about an hour later informing me that he was coming home. I guess the duct tape didn't work as well as he thought it would. I had to admit, it was pretty impressive. So much so, that the first thing out of my mouth was not, "Oh, let me mend it for you" but rather, "Wait! Don't take them off yet! I want to get a picture so that I can blog it!"

And not only do I have the urge to blog about it, but I can't help but write a little poem too.

At first, you went to lunch
Blissfully unaware.
Then you noticed people staring.
And realized it was your co-worker's glare.

"What's that?" One said.
"That right there?
In your brand new khakis
I think I see a tear."

You must be thinking,
About how rare
To have a tear
In your brand new pair.

The duct tape didn't work so well
Although it added flare.
But I'm sure you didn't want people to see
Your bare little derriere.

So you left the building
With moves like Astair
In hopes that no one would notice
Your newly made repair.

And when you arrived home
Your wife with loving care
Took a bunch of pictures
To blog about and share.

Now that I got that out of my system:

I'll try and spare you from having to see too much.

I think tomorrow, I'll send him to work with a ziploc bag and a spare pair of pants he can keep in the car. I'll make sure the spare pair doesn't have a tear. It might spare him from embarassment in the future should something like this happen again.

Just in case. You never know.