Monday, 30 June 2008

You Aint so Sweet

We arrived home from the beach Saturday evening to be greeted with a thunderstorm. We had barely unpacked the car when the electricity went out. A few hours of staring at each other (which wouldn't have been so bad if we hadn't just spent the last 10 hours in the car together) and we all went to bed.
It was hot upstairs and we opened all the windows to catch any breeze that might have existed. I normally turn the air conditioner on the first warm day in Spring and turn it off the first cool September night - so this open window thing was weird. I may live in the country but I like to be homogenily sealed in my house breathing fake air.
At 5 something the next morning I woke with a start to the sound of a bird shrieking to the sun rise. My first thought was..."get me a gun so I can blast it in it's stupid beak". I knew that wasn't kind. Then all the birds and animals started up. Sounded like I was in the freaking Amazon Jungle. And James was laying next to me sound asleep calling back to them with his snores.
I got out of bed and went into the kitchen and stood staring at the coffee pot. Still no coffee...I'm gonna die.
When James got up he tried to engage me in pleasant conversation and soon left for 7/11. He came back with 2 slightly warm cups of coffee. One for him and one for me. As I gulped it down I was thinking, "Buddy, I sure hope you have one of their stolen coffee pots hidden somewhere." He didn't.
The electricity came on around 11 and I got busy washing the beach out of everything.
It was good to be home.
My dog was happy to be home from the kennel - but that's another not so pretty story.

Friday, 27 June 2008

Sibling Revelry

Each day at the beach has been perfect. Warm days, warm ocean, waves not too rough and no jelly fish. All that has been great for most of us, but not for Grace. This is her second year at the beach that she can't get in the water because of her cathater for dialysis. And Grace really really loves to swim. She's had a great attitude (we only found her sitting and crying once) and there's lots of people to distract her, but it's been hard.
Two days ago her very nice brother asked her to go night fishing on the pier with my son in law and grandson. Girls never get to do this. (Actually, none of us want to)
Grace was thrilled!! They didn't catch a single thing but that wasn't what made it an awesome night for Grace.
Thanks David. I won't tell anyone that you did a nice thing...I promise.
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Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Better Than Tupperware

Last night the gang climbed the giant sand dune at Jockey's Ridge. (Know for the place where the Wright Brothers test flew their airplanes.) We carried the babies and helped haul up the pregnant women and made it to the top.
As I look at the picture of everyone together I am grateful to my parents who shared the love of God with me. And I see how that love is flowing out to the next and next generation.
God has a rock'n pyramid scheme!
(Can you find my next 2 grandkids in the picture?)
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Monday, 23 June 2008

Time Out for Fun

This is our annual week at the beach. Years ago when we first came down, our family fit into a small cottage. Now we rent more than one house as the kids are having kids and everyone comes with us. Our oldest grandchild is 15 and our youngest grandkids are due in July and November. It may be sunny or rainy and the water could be perfect or full of jelly fish. It doesn't matter when we have our week together. I haven't had many pleasures better than watching this family that God put together, playing and loving each other.

This is Layla who decided she LOVES the ocean this year.

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Friday, 20 June 2008

Little Tick - Big Mark

David has been laying around wrapped up in a blanket since Tuesday morning. He never lays around- ever. He's been running a temperature of 101-102 and we thought he had some kind of viral thing until yesterday when my husband spotted this "bulls-eye" on his back. They headed straight to the doctor and she agreed it was Lyme's Disease! It's fairly common around here (as are deer) but I've never seen such a tell-tale mark.
Apparently the antibiotics should bring a full recovery at this stage.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Come Here LIttle Doggy

Witt, our little puppy, is adorable and sweet.

But he is a puppy and puppies have issues.

House training issues for one.
I'd actually rather find his poops the second day as they are nice and dried up and don't smell any more.

And he chews everything. Barbie now has one good hand and the other....a stump. Everyone's flip flops are destroyed around the edges and Polly Pocket has to buy a whole new wardrobe.

This is his latest Killing Field. The dead monkey in the foreground has it's white cotton brains spattered everywhere. (Witt actually threw up a ball of monkey brains yesterday.) The glasses once belonged to one of us. The other objects are too badly decomposed to be identified.

Nice thing about puppies over babies is that when you get annoyed enough you can shut them up in their kennel. (If you can catch them)

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Ghetto Today - Gone Tomorrow

There's a new trend in the country apparently, for young couples to abandon the suburbs and move back to the city. Forecasters who study population migration, are even predicting that the once lauded suburbs will fall in such disfavor that they will become the next low income area. They talk about the mini-mansion homes being carved up into apartments and falling into disarray.
Our daughter Kara, always a front runner, has sold her home in the suburbs of Maryland and bought a row house in down town Baltimore.
When I grew up in Maryland, her area of Baltimore was the ghetto, but little by little, street by street, these young people are claiming it back. They can afford to get into the long narrow row houses and then they get to work. Kara and Nate have already started the transformation and we're excited for them.
We went down for a visit and enjoyed walking the streets and seeing the city life. She has a beautiful park 2 blocks down from her house complete with playground, pool and tennis. They can walk to the Inner Harbor and tons of restaurants.
City life isn't for everyone but they make it look fun!

Sunday, 15 June 2008

Always the Baby

In a family that does foster care, it's sometimes hard to know your role in the family. One day you may be the oldest daughter and the next you become a middle child. A few years ago, of the nine kids living here, we had 4 that were the "baby" of their biological families. You have to work hard to stay at the bottom of that heap!
Despite all the comings and goings, Grace has remained fixed in her sibling order. She was only a few months old when she came to us and some how managed to reign as "king" of the baby of the family.
So this week when we celebrated her 15th birthday, it was shocking to see all her very teen age friends playing in the pool.
If the baby is growing up, does it mean that dinners for two are around the corner?

Friday, 13 June 2008

It's Almost Time

We have gotten the official word that our two youngest will be returning to their biological mom in the next few weeks. They've been here almost a year and we've worked closely with mom to reunite this family. We almost never see the parents make the changes necessary to have their kids returned, so it's a rare treat to have this outcome.
There will be so less work when they go toys to pick one up at the crack of diapers.
We figured out that you have to love the kids full out while they're here, letting them into every crack of your heart, even though the eventual separation may hurt. Just like ripping a band aid off your arm, hair and all, the healing is underneath for the kids.
God assured me a long time ago that He would take over when we handed the kids off.
But my heart is ripping a little around the edges this time.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

It's Fine Mom, Don't Worry

The temperature here has been in the high 90's and we've had some freak storms roll through the last few days. Storms with high winds and a few twisters. There are trees down everywhere, including our yard.
Now why James thinks that it's a good idea to give David a chain saw and a ladder to cut the trees down, I can't imagine.
I stayed with him while he worked. He thought I wanted to talk, but really I just wanted to be with him if he sawed himself in half and to make sure he still loved Jesus right before he died.
He didn't. (Saw himself in half.)

Monday, 9 June 2008

I'm Done

We mostly finished our math books. We did finish everything else.
I cleared out the classroom, went to a homeshcool convention, bought all the curriculum for next year and put it on the shelves.
Now, I'm going to do nothing at all. Cause....School's Out and I'm ready for summer.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Study in Contrasts

I love this picture of my parents. (Thanks for sending it Lane)

This picture is so them.

My mom is wild...and I don't mean wild for 85, she is wilder than anyone I know. She thinks everything and everyone is interesting and no one can make me laugh harder.
This living life full out has cost her a shattered right shoulder early in May (while running in the rain) and on Sunday she fell and broke her left arm. As she lay in the hospital she entertained all of us and quite a few nurses.

Then there's my Dad. He's the most quiet and gentle person I know. He enjoys my mom's zest for life and keeps her anchored to the ground. Everything he does, he thinks carefully through first. He would never break anything. And in his quiet way, he's been my mom's best friend and nurse and they are what I want to be at that age. (well, minus the broken stuff.)
I love you Mom and Dad. (They do read my blog. They have to, they're my parents.)

Monday, 2 June 2008

70 xs 7

I'd been feeling like everything had been painted over in see through brown paint for the last week. I'd never felt this before - my middle name has always been Pollyanna and my rose colored glasses have rarely slipped off my nose. I wondered what was up.

Yesterday in church, while we were singing, I heard God. He was loud and clear in my head. I had not forgiven David last week. He had apologized, I had SAID that I forgave him but....I thought about his offense often. I muttered little comments about other people in his presence whose issues clearly paralleled him. I kept him slightly off balance as only a mom can do.

So I had to go to him right in the middle of the second praise song and whisper in his ear that I was sorry I hadn't forgiven him and that he was really forgiven now.

I don't know about him but I feel GREAT!