Saturday, December 27, 2008

Feliz Navidad

So far we have survived Christmas again this year, and no one has been sick, praise the Lord. We only have one family event left, and it is a gift-free get together. I think I've finally got all of the gifts put away, and I don't even want to think about taking the tree down yet, so I'll save that. Maybe next week.


Guess what my mom gave me for Christmas?

She said she figured this was the only way to make me stop whining about it. You can see where I get my own compassionate mothering skills, if there was any doubt in your mind.

From the picture, you might get the impression that I am actually able to ride it already. Do not be fooled. Truthfully, I did manage to get the pedals to go around about three times for this photo, but that's rare at this point. I will get it, though. It's my destiny.

Here are a few kid pictures, because we all know that's why most of you (my relatives) read this blog.

Here Zaya is meeting Woodbottle, his gift from our neighbor, Carl. (Zaya named it. I have no idea, so don't ask.)

Mim strikes a pose in her new princess dress from the Aunt-who-shall-remain-nameless. My Uncle E in the picture is wearing a T-shirt from If you'd like to see it, head to that URL and search through their t-shirt selection for "points of view". It's great.

Here are the stockings at Grandma Lilibeth's house. We opened presents at night on the 24th after the Christmas Eve Program; hence the formal attire.

There are two Christmas events (not counting tomorrow) not represented by pictures. I'll get to those. Really.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Memed again!

I was tagged for a Meme by Lisa at Our Seven Qtpies. The idea is that you go to your picture folder, whatever that might be titled, and choose the sixth folder, and the sixth picture in that folder. Then you have to post it, whatever it is, and explain it a bit.

Here's mine. It turns out to be one I've posted before, I'm pretty sure. This is from our one little pathetic snow last year. This year we've had a tiny, tiny smidge of snow, but nothing that has really accumulated (Except Tuesday's glaze.) I'm hoping for a real snow this year, because the kids are so excited about the idea of playing in the snow. They believe all the hype from the pictures and books and believe that snow and Christmas will coincide. I've tried to prepare them for the fact that Christmas morning will not be "white" this year, but who knows? Maybe their faith will move mountains. Or clouds. Whatever.

I don't remember how many people I'm supposed to tag, so I'll just pick a few. If I tag you, please don't feel like you have to participate, or tag anyone else. It's all just for fun.
I tag:

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Zaya recently discovered Garfield, and he's been reading and re-reading the few books that we had out. You don't know confusing until a four-year-old tries to describe a comic strip to you while giggling.

As we were sorting through the things in the backroom (which is fast becoming my den. Yea!!) we came across Art's collection of Garfield books from his childhood. I opened that box up for the kids yesterday evening and they were so excited. In the picture above they are reveling in their new treasure trove.

I was also a huge Garfield fan as a kid (okay, and teenager) but my dear, sweet clean-freak of a husband convinced me to get rid of my Garfield paraphernalia, including a clock and vintage stuffed animals, only last year. Little did we know that we were raising new fans. They would've loved that stuff! Oh well. It's not like they don't have enough stuffed animals in their rooms...but I do wonder if I can still buy a Garfield clock somewhere.

The picture was taken at 6:30 yesterday evening and my children were wearing their pajamas. "What a dedicated and organized mother!" you might say. Ha! The truth is that they had worn those pajamas all day. We didn't step one solitary little toe out the front door all day. The rest of the week is going to be hectic, but for one day, at least, we had peace and warmth. (You'll notice that Mim is also wearing a scarf. At least it wasn't the full set of princess regalia.)

Hot Chocolate Weather

We're snowed in today. Well, I guess "glazed in" would be a better phrase, at least that's what all the morning weather coverage called it. Regardless, it was enough to keep Zaya home with Mommy and Mim this morning.

I'm in a much better mood today (I know you all care) and, even though I've had to stop my children from playing tag with baseball bats and they wanted lunch at 10:20 (which they got.) things are looking up.

Anyway, I've also discovered, thanks to my lovely mother-in-law, a new Christian singing group which I think I'll enjoy. (I downloaded their Christmas album this morning.) I'm sure I'm way behind the times and you've all heard of them already, but here you are anyway. They're called Go Fish, and although I haven't yet plumbed the depths of their musical careers I am certainly enjoying their Christmas music (they have two albums of that) and my MIL loves their album "Party Like a Preschooler". It is a disc of childrens classics that are performed in a very peppy, danceable style with lots of bass. (Hey, I'm a drummer, I'm allowed to like a little bass.) I suppose they're a bit of a boy band, but I like harmony, so it's okay. I don't have any scarring memories from New Kids on the Block or NSync to try to overcome like most of my peers.

I'm going to leave you with a video of Mim telling me a story about Goki yesterday.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Frozen Fingers

I woke up on the wrong side of the recliner this morning, and I just can't seem to shake my funk.

Part of the problem is that I had a lousy night, and I know I forced my very patient husband to have a lousy night too. No, no one is sick (Thanks be to God for his grace and mercy) but we still have no heater back in our bedroom, and it got down to about 14 degrees here last night. I asked, no begged, Art if we could sleep in the living room instead of in our bedroom.

It's not that sleeping out there is cold, because we have a heated mattress pad, it's getting into and out of bed for the various bladders in the house (including mine). Anyway, to make a long story slightly shorter, we tried sleeping on a bunch of blankets laid out on the floor in the living room, but it was still cold (and painful because it's a wood floor). By morning time Art was in Zaya's bed and I was on the recliner. So I'm tired. And I'm still cold.


I've been a real grouch this morning and Mim's been trying to make the best of a bad situation. I have to admit that the sight of her dressed in her princess costume and her zip-up sleeper pajamas did cheer me up.

Once, when I was out in our ice-cold bedroom changing over the laundry, I heard her yelling from the back door

"(snapping) WHAT!!"
"umm...I love you!"

So yes, I felt like a heel, and I'm trying to improve my mood. Mim and I have been listening to Christmas music on my ipod which is hooked up to our stereo. (Third Day, Travis Cottrell, Micheal Buble, Jars of Clay and Relient K with a little Bing Crosby, Point of Grace and Transiberian Orchestra thrown into the mix.) We've baked some Buttermilk-Honey bread and made Puppy Chow (Or Muddy Buddies, depending on your recipe book.) Yes, the chocolate helped too.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Se Bonita

My fried Maria has been making jewelry now for quite a while. At first she wanted to learn so that she could make some pieces for herself, but she quickly realized that other people were interested too, and that she could make enough to buy all her supplies. It has since mushroomed and she now has a place in W'ville that has agreed to display her jewelry. She has to decide now how big she wants this to be. We are taking pictures to put in a book so that people can order pieces they like that are not available on the shelf, but she has to decide if it's worth all the trouble. Here are a few of her items. She's trying to make something for all styles. (Her style and mine differ greatly, so I've been her guinea pit. I'm not going to complain.)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Waxing Poetic

We've decided that we need to do better about having family devotions, so tonight was our first night of all four of us sitting together (instead of just one parent with the little ones.) We read a Bible story together and then prayed. Each of us were supposed to pray about something specific that we were thankful for. Here was Zaya's prayer.

Dear Lord, Thank you for the wind that swirls, for the snow that brings water. Thank you for the leaves that fall. Amen. (It's been a very cold, windy, snowish kind of day.)

Then his Daddy said, "OK, Mim, you go read your bedtime story with Mama while Longfellow and I read ours here."

These guys of mine keep me in stitches.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Happy Christmas/Birthday to Me

December is upon us, and I'm beginning to realize why adults always look so stressed this time of year. Especially our family. My husband and I and one of my sisters-in-law all share the same birthday. (December 14th for the gift inclined.) My other sister-in-law has her birthday two days later. So my poor mother-in-law now has four children with birthdays within a three day stretch. Two weeks before Christmas.

Anyway, even though we discussed the fact that we were not going to buy each other Christmas and Birthday gifts this year, Art is buying me a laptop. WOOHAA!! Maybe it was the fact that I finally sat down and started my novel. He sees that there is a chance that I might actually be able to bring in income at some point in the future. (Okay, an admittedly remote chance, but don't dash all my hopes and dreams please.)

I'm very excited about my laptop, and I wouldn't trade that, but here's the other thing I would like to write to Santa about.

My mother and mother-in-law have refused to buy one for me. My mother has refused for years. (many years) They keep saying something about motherhood and massive head trauma and other immaterial issues. Whatever.

Maybe Santa will pull through for me.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Road Trip Part 2

I've decided that we should try, once a year, to go somewhere with my siblings. I know that it'll be too crazy when our families grow and etc., but while we can, anyway.

We'll probably take our kids with us when they get a tad older, but for this time it was wonderful to have a full 36 hours with just adults! There was so much less stress in my life on our trip, even when Art made a Q-turn. (You'll have to ask him about that.) It was nice to know that my children were safe and happy with their grandmas, and I didn't have to worry for the whole time about the state of their bladders, noses, stomachs and etc.

We left Friday morning and went to the Dallas Museum of Art in the afternoon, when we arrived. I wanted to see the King Tut exhibit. but I ended up quite annoyed with it, actually. It cost us approximately $30 a person to get in (that included the rest of the museum too) so I was expecting something fairly spectacular, like, oh, maybe some of the artifacts on all the signs and posters. Although they did have a few room of artifacts from Tut's tomb, there were just as many rooms of artifacts from other "relatives" of Tut. They didn't have the actual sarcophagus, or that beautiful mask, or anything belonging to the mummy itself except a bit of jewelry that had been in the wrappings. Those large, thin animals that are such an iconic part of the Tut photos and story were also absent. I was quite disappointed with the exhibit.

However, the museum did have a section of Winston Churchill memorabilia in connection with the Reves family. (Good friends of Churchill's and subjects of a large exhibit themselves.) That made the trip worth it. They even had a set of his paints and some of his paintings done at the Reves' home on the Riviera. (He was a better statesman than artist, I'm afraid.)

We went to the Celtic Thunder concert that night; just us and the uppity Dallas PBS crowd. Musically it was great. The songs were well done, and the instrumentalists were all very skilled. However, the venue was disappointing. The Nokia Theater in Grand Prairie did not inspire me. We were seated up in the nose-bleed section, (It's like a huge pie wedge, and we were up in the crust.) and they did not have any kind of screen or cameras, so we could hardly see what was going on. You could see people, but not facial features, really. Sometimes I would forget that I was at a live concert, and then be suddenly jerked back to it by someone interacting with the crowd down near the stage.

All in all, I had a great time and I would definitely do it again, but if I could've had a little chat with my future self I would have skipped the museum and used the extra money to get seats much closer to the front of the theater. Then we could've gone to the combined Ripley's Believe it or Not and Louis Tussaud's Wax Museum, the gaudy facade of which was down the highway a bit from our hotel. It probably would've been more interesting than the DMOA, and much cheaper. We're from Oklahoma after all; it's not like we demand high class entertainment.

On the way home Saturday we stopped at IKEA, my favorite store of all time. We bought a computer chair, and another POANG chair with ottomans to go in our soon-to-be den. (She said with hope.)(Ours are navy blue with birch wood, so slightly different than the photo.)

Oh, and Elijah seranaded us in the car with a little throat singing. I should have videotaped it, but here's a picture anyway. He's dressed like a hobo; not on purpose, I think. We weren't sure if the rich, Crown Royal guzzling, concert-goers would let him stay in the theater on Friday night, but apparently they'll let anyone come to those things as long as they pay.

In fact, he sang for quite a while, and my sister and I started singing Celtic Thunder songs in self-defense. The guys got a real kick out of the fact that we both knew the entire Old Irish verse of "Come by the Hills." (below) What can I say? It's cool!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Here we grow...

Art and I are back from a trip we took to Dallas with my brother and sister. (Elijah and Claye). I will be blogging about that soon, God willing and the cricks don't rise.

For now, here are a couple of family pictures. Art's parents celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary this last Sunday, and we got a quick family picture in the church after service. Art's sister is pregnant (Jaida and Addy will be meeting their baby brother in 3-4 months) so my mother-in-law wanted to get a picture of the whole family pre-baby for history's sake.

Here are two of the more humorous pictures. Zaya is using his usual photo-taking techniques. And yes, I believe he is, indeed, making a spit bubble in one of those pictures.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


We installed our woodstove about a week and a half ago, and we've really been enjoying it. Of course, the temperatures have been fairly mild thus far. I think it might have hit freezing outside one night, but that's all.

The kids are still having a lot of fun with it. (And Art is too, truth be told. He's a pyromaniac at heart.) Mim especially loves to go get wood for me. Of course, all the pieces I get from her fall more in the kindling category, but she's in there trying anyway.

Art worked very hard on all the tiling and he installed the stove too, all by himself, as per usual. I'm not complaining, though. He did the work much faster, cheaper and probably better than a professional would've done. I'm so glad that I married a handyman. I think God knew that I would need the help. (Especially the cars. Art: "Honey, what's that noise your car is making?" Me: "Noise? What noise? Isn't that how it's supposed to sound?")

Anyway, I've been sitting next to the fire at night, writing or researching, and it's all very...well...cozy.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Checking In

Just letting you know we're all still alive here. I'm woefully behind on my word count for NaNoWriMo, as I knew I would be, but I've got my whole plot figured out in my head, and about the first 3 or 4 chapters written. (8,000 words)

Here are some cute pictures of Mim in her princess costume for the parade at the Nursing Home here in town. She was a princess because I already had all these things in her closet, so there was no purchasing of costume involved.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Foolish Optimism

I have been and will be all but AWOL from the blog for a couple weeks. I'm trying, once again, to write a novel. It's NaNoWriMo, you know. (That's National Novel Writing Month)

The kids are still doing cute things, and there is still much insanity around the Stepper household, but it will be sparingly reported until I give up on this year's attempt at greatness. I'll leave you with this little bit of cuteness.

In my clever attempt at naptime, I told the kids they had to have "rest time" in their bedrooms. It worked. Mim bored herself to sleep on my computer chair while she waited for the timer to go off. Ah, a sleeping pre-schooler. Is there any more beautiful sight in all the world of motherhood? Oh, except a sleeping infant. That's the absolute epitome of beauty.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

The Crazy Life - Updated

"I have to poo. Keep guard of my Freshnut Pinecone."

This is something I just heard from my sweet, little boy.

Do you want details? I didn't think so.

Update: Since details were indeed requested, here's the basic information.

Zaya was playing with his safety scissors and some blue paper and created this roughly pinecone shaped object, with little slits all around the edges. When he brought it to me I asked him to "tell me about it" and he said. "It's a Freshnut Pinecone!" I'm pretty sure he just made that up at the exact moment I asked for an explanation. Anyway, the excitement of his creation was to much for him, so he laid down the aforementioned paper flora and said, "I have to poo. Keep guard of my Freshnut Pinecone." I agreed to do so, and he ran off to the bathroom. As soon as things were accomplished to his satisfaction, he requested the return of his creation, and looking at it with pride, said, "Yup. This sure is a Freshnut Pinecone!"

So, now you know. Do you feel more fulfilled?

Sunday, November 02, 2008


I was pleasantly surprised by Zaya's first school picture. I just knew they would get one of his goofy goober faces, but they did a great job getting a real smile. I'm very happy with it.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


We received the Little Tikes catalog in the mail this afternoon, so Mim got to work making out her Christmas list.

She wants a playhouse for outside. She's even decided where she'd put it. Of course, there's a small detail about the $299.99 that Little Tikes wants someone to pay for this playhouse, but that doesn't seem to dampen her enthusiasm.

I tried to explain that it was unlikely she'd be the proud owner of the aforementioned playhouse, but I don't think I got through.

Meanwhile, Zaya turned the swingset into a boat. A pirate ship, to be more specific. (Thank you, Grandma Lilibeth) I asked him if he was a pirate.

"Oh, no."
"Well, Zaya, what are you?"
"I'm someone who kills pirates."
"Oh dear. Then how did you get onto that pirate ship."
"Well, I killed all the pirates, I guess."

I think we've a little ways to go, yet, in explaining acceptable social behavior. Just because pirates are bad guys doesn't mean it's necessarily OK to slaughter them wholesale. There are all these details about due process and etc.

Maybe they'll cover that in Kindergarten next year.

And...One More Time

I've been flying under the radar again this week, with another sick kiddo. Mim came down with a fever late Sunday night, but we're hoping it's the same thing Zaya had last week, which means she should be done with it by today. (fingers crossed)

Lots of coughing, Kleenex and videos here in the Babystepper household these last two weeks. In the process, we've also moved our bedroom out to the back, and Mim's bedroom into our old room. We've also cut a hole in the Living room wall, so that we can tile it and put in the wood stove soon.

Needless to say I've fallen a little behind in, oh, pretty much everything else.

Here's to facing down the odds!

Oh, and look in the top picture at the kids' beautiful new sweaters! One of my friends and ESL students, Laura, knitted them both. She doesn't use patterns or anything like that. I just picked out the yarn for her, and she made each sweater in a couple of days. Zoom on in and look at the detail. You'll be impressed, I promise.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Open Wide

I finally found that magical combination of motivation, self-discipline and plain old serendipity and scheduled the kids for their first dentist appointment. I've been meaning to do this for a while. (Like, oh, about 2 years) but you know, life just sort of kept happening.

Anyway, it all turned out fine, no thanks to the procrastinating mother. Neither of them have cavities, which was an answer to prayer and a big relief. We've been careful to brush their teeth and all, but they did both have bottles to go to sleep well into their second year of life. (I know, I'm a terrible mother. Please keep your loathing to a minimum.)

We're supposed to start flossing their teeth now. Right. I can't even remember to floss my own teeth, let alone my kids' too. Genetically speaking, though, they're already headed for a rough time in orthodontics-land, so I shouldn't add to their troubles.

After their appointments were successfully completed (and they both behaved very well, thanks be to the God of Miracles) we took a little trip to Braum's. Because there's nothing like a little egg nog and chocolate mint ice cream to really finish off a cleaning and fluoride treatment. Did I mention my sub-par mothering skills?

At least I have the consolation that they both came home saying, "Going to the DENTIST is FUN!!!!!" How many mothers can say that, eh?

Coughing the Night Away

Zaya has now missed three days of school. He's had a mild cold for a while, but he started running a fever on Monday night, and we haven't been able to get rid of it yet for more than a few hours. The doctor gave us all sorts of things for him to take for infection, congestion, asthma etc. and so we've been playing the "Mommy the Nurse" game.

Here's Zaya doing his breathing treatment. At least the asthma is mild. In the past it would take us a good 36 hours (or bad 36 hours) to get over the dangerously hard wheezing and coughing part, but this time it's just a vague whistling sound when you listen to his lungs.

I hate for him to miss so much school, but I suppose they'd hardly flunk him from Pre-K. He's living it up, of course, with games and cartoons and mommy giving him everything he wants.

He's also invented a new character, "Mind the Washable Blue Crayon". So far Mind the Washable Blue Crayon's only superpower is drawing starting points and speed up lines. You'll have to ask Zaya himself for more specifics.

I don't know, maybe it's all the steroids and mind-altering decongestants.

Monday, October 20, 2008


Here are some of the things I learned today from and about my children.

Goki is a girl. (There's been some discussion about that as pronouns are occasionally a foggy concept.) She doesn't ever cry. She doesn't cry in the car, or when her Mama goes to worship team practice, or when she's playing with her brother. She's also never shy, but talks right back to people when they talk to her. (In case you're lost in the subtleties, these are things Mim tends to have trouble with.) That Goki's a real tough nut, apparently.

In other news, I've recently been telling Zaya to pray like he's talking to God, instead of his standard pre-meal, pre-bedtime, "Dear God, Thank you for today and thank you for all our families and all our friends. Amen." This prayer gets rattled off at lightning speed and is all but incoherent. It makes me question the prayer's heartfelt authenticity. So here is what I've gotten the last two nights I've asked him to pray. "Dear God, please help my birthday to come real soon." and the extremely optimistic "Dear God, please give me a wonderful life."

Obviously we need to work a bit on the finer points of the Praise, Thanksgiving, Confession and Intercession that ought to be a part of one's prayer life.

It's Done

Our morning hair-brushing sessions finally reached such proportions that something had to be done.

Introducing, the haircut.

She and I are both much, much happier with the results. Morning time is now just that little bit more pleasant.

P.S. After deleting 21 spam comments in about 15 minutes this morning, I've decided to up the security on my comments now. I put this off as long as I could, but it's just getting too annoying. You should all still be able to comment, you'll just have to do the word verification and I'll do the approval step, too.

Friday, October 17, 2008


Zaya received his first report card this last week. It was yet one more step on his road to adulthood, and felt a little strange.

Of course, there's no A-F at this stage. Just S (satisfactory) or NT (needs time).

He's doing pretty well. The only S- were for "able to work without disturbing others" and "finishes work in a timely manner" or some such thing. The teacher said she only gave those minuses so she would remember what to talk to the parents about. Oh, and he also had an NT on "Cuts well with scissors." She says he flips them over.

Apparently he tends to sing to himself or make noises while he's working, which occasionally distracts the other students. This shouldn't surprise anyone who attended school with me. I still remember one day in class when I was tapping out rhythms with my pencil, my good buddy (MB) turned around to me and said, in a very exasperated voice, "Hey! Band was last hour!" Oh, right. Ummm. Didn't really know I was doing anything. I'm afraid Zaya is going to be the same. Uh Oh.

Anyway, she said he was a good student, had "a lot of energy" (we all know what that means.) and was very well behaved. He really takes it to heart when he gets in trouble, and never has any attitude. Frankly, I care a lot more about that than whether or not he uses his scissors correctly.

I mean, I got a U in coloring in Kindergarten (for not following directions. They were trying to stifle my artistic tendencies.), so I'm hardly in a position to judge the little guy.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


We've been hearing, here in our little corner of the world, that we as Christians should not let the abortion issue "trump all the others" in the choosing of a presidential candidate.

I'm having a hard time with hearing that. Of course there are many issues that are important, but if you really believe that abortion is murder, it has to trump the other issues. If it were slaughter of one-year-olds there would be no question at all. None.

For a vivid image of the sheer enormity of this issue, check out Lilibeth's blog. She and her senior Bible class made a visual to try to get the numbers in perspective. This is a must see. It surprised them, and anyone else who has seen it.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Attachment Parenting

I've never been a big fan of the mothering trend of co-sleeping, but only because it just didn't work for us. I cannot sleep when there's a child in the bed. I'm too worried about rolling over, or making a noise and waking them, and then I get heartburn and I really can't sleep. I discovered all this while Zaya was a colicky, sleepless infant. Needless to say, when Mim was a baby she slept in her own crib and we only snuggled when she was awake.

Apparently, though, Mim is going to be more open to the idea when she becomes a mother herself.

Meowling Fun!

Here's how you entertain preschoolers while Mommy and Daddy are busy painting.

The cat wasn't crazy about it, but the kids thought it was great! (Notice the tail and the front left paw.)


For as long as I can remember, my Grandpa P has had Guayaberas as part of his wardrobe. (And cotton coveralls, but that's another post) This is a style preference he picked up in his years as a missionary in Mexico, as most men do who go down south of the border for any length of time. I'm told they're very comfortable and easy to wear.

Now Zaya has a couple Guayaberas of his own. My friend Maria brings me clothes that her boys have outgrown, and the latest box had two of these shirts. (They're back in style, now. Grandpa knew what he was doing, I guess.)

I was so excited to see them. In fact I wish we'd had them for school picture day. I think it would be great to have a picture of Zaya and a picture of my Grandpa together in their Guayaberas. We'll have to try at Christmas.

Friday, October 10, 2008


We are within sight of having one of the backrooms finished. All we lack is paint, flooring and trim to have our bedroom finished. (There will still be some work to do in the laundry area and the closet, shelving and such, but the main part will be done!)

Now we have to choose paint colors. This scares me because I am not very confident about colors. I can see colors very well, but I can't really tell what will look good together. When I was a senior in high school, I had to have the younger girls in the dorm tell me if the clothes I was wearing matched or not. I'm not kidding. Anyway, I've let Art have a lot of say-so in the colors we choose because a) He's paying for it. b) He's pickier. c) He's doing most all the work and d) It won't be my fault if it looks bad.

What a wife, eh?

Anyway, here's what "we" have chosen for the wall base color. It's hard to see in the picture, but it's a slightly brownish/orangeish off-white. The trim will be pine wood, and the flooring slightly darker wood. The doors and maybe the laundry area will be either dark green or dark blue. I'm leaving Art in charge of that decision for the above mentioned reasons.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Great Pumpkin(s)

If an effort to be June Cleaver, I took my children to the pumpkin patch last week. It's a local farm that makes most of its money in the fall with pumpkins, gourds and general autumnal paraphernalia. I could've just bought the pumpkins for our jr. high party at the grocery store, but no. I wanted to create a memory. I created some pictures anyway. Beyond that there's no guarantee.

Of course there were quite a few Halloween decorations up, which I dislike intensely, but so far the kids don't really have any special interest in the whole process. They were intrigued by the mechanics more than anything. This snow-globe ghost had little black "bats" flying around inside a haunted house.

Luckily they were much more interested in the backyard. I loved this trampoline. The owners dug a hole and set the trampoline down where the jumping surface is at ground level. This way the kids can jump on and off with relative impunity. If we ever own a trampoline, this is how I'd want to do it, I think. You can see Mim there checking underneath. (She's looking for a cat, I think)

This will probably be our last pumpkin patch trip. As Mim and Zaya become more aware of the world around them, they'll start asking why we're going somewhere with big monster decorations and what a witch is and on and on. We face enough of that just walking through Wal-mart. Besides, I can buy the same pumpkins for half the price at the grocery store. Oh well. So much for nostalgia.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Book Meme

I've been tagged for a book meme by Lisa at Our Seven Qtpies.

Here are the instructions -

Grab the nearest book.
Open the book to page 56.
Find the fifth sentence.
Post the text of the next two to five sentences in your journal/blog along with these instructions.
Don't dig for your favorite book, the cool book, or the intellectual one: pick the CLOSEST.
Tag five other people to do the same.

I have a couple hundred paperback mysteries in the bookshelf right next to my computer desk, so I grabbed the most accessible, which turned out to be Death of a Dude by Rex Stout.

"As I reported, he's one of the few people who thinks Harvey is clean."

"The Hall of Culture. You told me three years ago that he tried to get you to read Bacon's essays."

"I see you brought your memory along. It may come in handy." I slowed the car to ease down the bank of a gully and climbed back up. "He will expect you to shake hands. Everybody you meet out here will, and you've got enough built-in points against you without adding another one."

"I resent any formality requiring bodily contact."

I tag:

Lilibeth at Keeping Up
Johanna at The Journey
Aftergrace at Still Waters Run Deep
Sara at Geeks, Freaks and Weirdos
and Heather at not a DIY Life.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Update Blog Link

I just wanted to let everyone know about a blog where all of us are following the progress of Mrs. S.

Her daughter set this up, and I think it'll be a real help to us here in the community.

Patty Schimmer Condition Update

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

All I Know

We now know the name of the other driver. He was a student at the university that lived in a nearby town. For reasons unknown his car swerved across the line and hit theirs. Our teacher, Mrs. S, tried to get over, but she just didn't have time to get far enough. He was driving a little convertible, and was ejected forcibly from his vehicle. He died instantaneously.

Our students have some bruises cracks and cuts, and each boy has a broken leg. Mrs. S's legs were crushed by the front of the vehicle, but they are performing surgery already in the hopes that she will be able to use them again. She also has some cracked ribs and the other cuts and bruises and internal problems that come with a wreck of this magnitude.

We're all still praying here, and I hope that you are too out there in internet land.
Thanks for the prayers you've already sent on their behalf.

Urgent Prayer Request

Please pray for Mrs. S from our high school here. (my alma mater) She and her van load of kids were hit head-on this morning on their way to school. We don't know, yet, who hit them, and we don't know yet the extent of Mrs. S's injuries, because she was trapped still in the vehicle last I heard. Two students have been taken to the hospital, but the rest are OK.

I'll update when I know anything new.

Update: This is all courtesy of the grapevine. Mrs. S was medi-flighted from the scene of the accident to Oklahoma City. Both of her legs are broken. Two boys (A and P) were medi-flighted from the hospital in W'ville. They also have broken legs, and the doctors wanted to check thoroughly for internal injuries. (They may have both been ejected from the vehicle.) One other student was involved, but seems to be fine. The driver of the other vehicle was killed. We do not know who it was, or where he/she was from. We also have no details yet about how the accident occurred.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Field Trip!

Friday was Zaya's first ever field trip. We went to a Farm and Corn Maze that is out here in western OK. Mim and I went along to participate in the festivities, along with a lot of other mommies and a couple of baby brothers. Thomas stuck right with us most of the day. He's a sweet little guy. He wanted to hold Mim's hand and pat her a lot. He always had to sit by her and Zaya. He'll be in most of the pictures, I think. He's in a bright blue shirt.

The kids listened to a talk about alternate sources of energy. (Here's what Zaya thought about that.)

Then went for a hay ride. (Minus the hay. It was really more of a trailer ride.) There was a brief stop for pumpkins. Despite the appearance of the photo, it was actually Thomas who wanted to sit by Mim. Although she doesn't seem to mind, does she?

After that exhilarating experience we went through the corn maze. We only did half of it, but that was quite enough for the 14 four and five year olds. (Not to mention all the grown-ups)

They had a little barn where the kids could feed the animals.

And then they watched the farmer hypnotize a chicken. (It's not every day you get to watch something like that! Hot Dog!)

There was a "train ride" and a crazy playground to finish the morning off.

The kids and I went out to eat at Taco Mayo. We were all exhausted, but Mommy most of all. I came home and crashed while the kids ran around like lunatics and planned world domination. (They almost pulled it off, too, but I came out of my fog enough to distract them with Curious George just in time.)