Monday, June 30, 2008


The other day, Mim and and I were talking about C'aunt Sarah's wedding. Mim is going to be co-flower girl with her cousin Jaida, (Zaya will be ringbearer) and she's very excited about her beautiful dress and the wedding shower we recently gave for Sarah.

I was explaining to Mim that a wedding shower does not involve water, but is more like a big party. I told her that Sarah is going to marry a special man.

Mim said, "Yeah, cause she doesn't need her daddy anymore."

She put this forth in such a grown-up little voice, as if we were two grown ladies talking about marriage and only we understood these things.

It made me remember my own daddy at the time that I prepared for my wedding and the changes that would take place in all of our lives after that event.

My parents really liked Art, and they had no worries at all about the kind of husband he would make, but I remember many conversations with my father about the role of a husband and the role of parents.

He would tell me, "You shouldn't come running to us any time you have a little problem. You two will have to work things out yourselves because that's what it means to be married. But if he ever hurts come home, and Daddy will take care of you. And him."

I've never had to run back to Dad, of course, because Art is the kindest, gentlest man God ever made, but I've always appreciated knowing that my father not only understood that I "didn't need him anymore" but also that I would always need him.

I hope and pray that Mim will understand this too, when the time comes. When you marry, you do put your life into the hands of another person, and their ideas and beliefs should take precedence to those of your parents, but....Mim too will always need her daddy.

Friday, June 27, 2008

See the World

Art has an uncle, Justin, who is not all that much older than he is. He has always seemed more like a cousin, and we enjoy talking with him and his wife Christina

Well, Justin and Christina are on a world tour. Not the ritzy, cruise-ship style of world tour, though. This is the real way to see the world. They'll be out of the country for months and months and have no more luggage with them then two backpacks each. Yes, just the thought of that fills me with fear. I would pack that much for a weekend.

They're currently in New Zealand, and they are keeping the rest of the world posted about their travels through pictures and blog posts. Follow the links to see where they've been and what they've seen.

Blog - Hobo Honeymoon

Photos - These are fantastic as Christina is an avid photographer.

If you want to know where all they'll be going this year, read the first couple posts on their blog. The posts arrive in spurts, as they don't always have internet access, but it's worth the time to go back and check periodically.

Our family is currently living out their wanderlust vicariously. Maybe someday we can go see some of these amazing places ourselves, but these photos and explanations will do for now.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Road Trip

We returned yesterday from a flying trip to visit my grandparents in West Texas. A nice time was had by all. Well, all of us anyway. I hope Grandma P and Grandpa P have recovered from our invasion. The kids had fun doing all sorts of things while the adults were busy getting ready for a big sale this weekend. More details of our trip will follow in the days to come, but right now I'm just going to be brief because, frankly, I'm tired.

Just to prove we were really there, though, here are the kids and Grandpa P having a good time.

There were also a couple of aunts and an uncle there, although I'm forbidden to show pictures of, or even mention one of those aunts on this blog. Maybe she's in witness protection and hasn't told me about it. I'm not sure. Grandma also was blog, and thus camera, shy. Uncle Tom and Aunt Hazel were busy living their lives off camera as well, but all those not appearing in photo were and are just as loved.

Details of our trip to a castle, a farm and a fishing hole will be coming to a blog near you in the future.


Monday, June 23, 2008

Moving On

I've always thought women who said they wished their little ones could "stay babies forever" were just plain loony. The baby stage was most definitely not my favorite. Why on earth would you want to put up with diapers, bottles (or worse), and no way to communicate with your child for more than the year that we already have?

Not for me. I was thrilled when my little ones started to talk and reason. I would be a nutcase if we had to stay at the baby stage any longer than we do. Of course, I didn't have those sweet little "lie on a blanket and coo" kind of babies either. Mim was pretty content, really, for the first 6 months, but Zaya was a crazy little weasel. The colic, the total inability to be still for even two seconds, the crying unless food was in the process of entering his mouth....ugh. Not again.

I can, however, see someone wishing that their little one would stay about four years old for a while. It has been a pleasant age. Zaya is almost always in a good mood (no tantrums) and he's fun to talk to. Sure, he can be a little crazy sometimes, but it's a good crazy. (see prev. post about puffer fish) He's actually reading pretty well now, so I can tell him to read his own book if he gets too insistent, but he's still young enough that he wants to snuggle and read with me also.

I've finally reached a point where I'm not eager for him to grow up "just a little more". He starts Pre-K this next year, and I'm not ready. I've been looking forward to Pre-K since he was born, but it's become less and less appealing as the time approaches and it starts to sink in that my baby will be out of my sight and control for a large chunk of his day.

This feeling and a lot of other factors led us to enroll Zaya in Pre-K at a small Christian school in W'ville. (They have the option of 1/2 day Pre-K and Kindergarten, where the local Public school here in our town only has full day in those grades.) The school is actually based in C, another nearby town, and I attended TLCS* (The Little Christian School) myself in 4th, 5th and 6th grades. They recently opened up their W'ville campus in a local church that offered their gym for classrooms and play-time. I think I'll be the first "alumni" to have their own child enter the school. (It's only 20 yrs. old. Unlike the Jr.High/High School I talk about sometimes, which is 100+ yrs. old.)

It's been a hard decision in some ways because all Zaya's (and Mim's) little buddies from church will be attending the public school here in our own town, and I don't for a moment want their mothers to think I am judging their decisions in any way. I really hope they won't be upset because I don't want to damage our friendships. Nevertheless, the choice stands. The school here in town is perfectly fine. You would be hard pressed to find a better public school, but when we sat down and listed the pros and cons for our family, TLCS won out.

Gas money is a real drawback to our decision, because it will mean one trip to town and back everyday for me, at the best. (Because Art already goes there and back everyday for work, so he can probably take Zaya in the mornings.) It has to be, though, and now we'll just wait and see how this next year goes. Who knows what the future holds. I only know that I'm going to miss my little guy a whole lot, and I sincerely hope he doesn't lose his sweet spirit as he becomes a "schoolchild". (Although everyone tells me he will.)

*It's blog name only

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Virtual Makeover

Last year I came across on offer for blogwork by a lovely lady named Revka. She was just getting started in doing blog design, and said she would give a free header (That's the picture at the top of my blog.) to the first few people who e-mailed her requesting one.

I swallowed my pride and e-mailed, for two reasons. No, three. First, I'm not a designer. I'm terrible at lay-outs and anything that involves a sense of style. Yes, this includes my home and my person. Sad, but true. The second reason would be laziness. I wanted something nice at the top of my blog, but the work involved to learn HTML was just too much. My third reason, of course, was that it was free. Yes, free is good.

However, Revka did such a great job that I would recommend actually paying for her services. I know, it's a leap, but I've really enjoyed the work she did and am still perfectly happy with my header. It makes me look like I have a sense of style. And a laptop.

If you'd like to get a little work done on your blog, and help out a fellow blogger at the same time (me), you could let RS Designs know that I referred you when you place your order. If you do that you'll get a "free surprise addition (a $10 value) to your order." Doesn't that just make you want to go out and get a snazzy little blog makeover. (I'll be getting a little bit of a discount if you do this, that's the "helping me" part. Don't let that sway you one way or the other, though.)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Coconut Cream Soup

Well, so I tried to make a coconut-cream pie using my Grandma P's recipe.

The pudding mix went well.

The crust was hideous, but tasted good. (It was too crumbly, Grandma, did it need more shortning? More water?)

The meringue even looked good.

The problem?

It was still pudding consistency inside. And I don't mean the thick stand-your-spoon-up kind of pudding. I mean the hold-up-the-bowl-and-drink kind.

It tasted fine, but I did something wrong with the filling. It was not like Grandma's pie.

Not that I expected it to turn our right, since I'm the one who made it, but still. I had these hopes.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Pumpkin, Pecan, Apple?

Mim finally woke up without a fever this morning, so I'm officially calling her "well". It's a nice feeling to know that both of my children are currently healthy. That should last until the weekend of the fourth of July. (We have a family camping trip planned.)

Today after the bookmobile story-time we went to visit Grandma Lilibeth, just for a chance to get away from the house for awhile. On the way, Mim was sitting in the backseat quietly and then she said,

"Mommy. Ms. Julie [the librarian] called me 'sweetie-pie' today."

(silent thought) "...but...I not a pie!"

How confusing terms of endearment must be to the little guys.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

And So it Goes

Just an interesting sidenote. This is my 400th post. Yea.

Mim now has a fever. Of course, she comes down with it on Friday evening. I did finally get hold of our doctor and he's called in a prescription for her. She shook things up a bit by getting sick at a family event instead of before. So far it's just a fever, and I'm hoping it stays that way since she had her first dose of antibiotics within an hour of getting her fever. (Zaya had one dose left after he had completely finished his.)

We were at Grandma Lilibeth's house, celebrating her return. She's been in Arkansas for the last 2 1/2 weeks looking after my paternal Grandmother who had a wreck. Grandma can't move without her special back brace, so life alone in her apartment is currently impossible. I'm glad my mother was able to go help, and I hope Grandma is healing quickly, but I'm sure glad she's back. I don't like being the responsible one in the family. I'm just not qualified yet.

On another interesting and totally unrelated note, I asked my little niece, Jaida, if she would sing me her favorite song the other day. She sang, "F-R-E-E that spells free. Credit Report dot com Baby!" I asked her where she learned that lovely little ditty and she said, "Daddy!"

Monday, June 09, 2008

One More Time...

I don't know how they do it, but my normally healthy children get the strangest little illnesses right before special family events. How do they know? Is it just Murphy's law or is this some strange cross we have to bear?

Last Christmas Zaya came down with what turned out to be Strep throat and caused him to miss two family celebrations and the whole family to miss a trip to Texas. Then Zaya had a little two hour mystery illness the day of his cousin Jaida's birthday party. (Mim and Dad went by themselves.) Two weeks ago Mim had a little day-and-a-half fever that kept us from going to a wedding and visiting Art's youngest sister.

And then this weekend we should have known something was going to happen, because it was Addy's birthday party and another trip to visit Art's sister. Of course, Zaya came down with another weird case of Strep throat. They're so weird because he experiences no throat pain. He just had a fever, but acted otherwise normal...until this morning, when he started throwing up. =P Needless to say, we did not travel, and only Mim and I got to go to the birthday party. Poor little Zay.

Anyway, we've been to the doctor already and started the antibiotics so hopefully he's feeling better soon. He's really the sweetest little sick guy. He said, "thank you" when I held his bucket for him and said, "I'd like a drink of water please" and "That water tastes great!"

Friday, June 06, 2008

Imagination Powered

The summer reading program has released a new burst of imaginative play in our house.
We have more than 20 books checked out right now, and we're trying to get through 176 more (just Mim's, that is) so we'll have enough "Bug Bucks" to buy a cute little purse with a bug on it. (That's 50 Bug Bucks total at 4 books a Buck. She currently has 6 Bucks.)

Anyway, several of our books are about sea creatures. The titles being variously, "Rays", "Eels", "Squids", "Sponges" and the riveting "Puffer Fish". They have now been read several times to both children and apparently absorbed.

Yesterday, amid the chaos of a thunderstorm and a total lack of electricity, my children became sea creatures. A Puffer Fish and a Shark, to be more exact.

Can you guess which was which?

The size of Mim's mouth never ceases to amaze me. Those are some nice healthy tonsils she's got there. Zaya was also heard to say, "I am biting things with my beak-shaped teeth! I eat shellfish. Daddy, you are a clam!" Daddy cowered appropriately.

Lest you think we sound too intellectual here, let me also add that they spent a large amount of time running like lunatics this morning around and around the kitchen/hall loop; one wearing a black stocking cap and the other holding a (clean) Disney princess pull-up (leftover from the potty-training days)yelling, "STEP IN! STEP IN! STEP IN!", then laughing like hyenas and reversing roles.

Ah...the peaceful days of summer.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Going Potty

My sister, Claye, has made a large number of pots this year in her art classes. I like having artists in the family because I have no skills myself and cannot afford to purchase pieces from others. This way I can own beautiful things at starving artist prices.

And yes, I pay what Claye charges, just for the record. I'm not ripping her off. Of course, if they're worth thousands some day, I can't say I'll go back and make up the difference...

I'm enjoying the appearance of being cultured, anyway, when people walk in and see the lovely hand-made pottery on my piano.

Alright, well, yes, it's true that no one but family and close friends ever visit my home. And yes, also true that one of those pots is sitting on a doily. But still... you know what I mean.

Now if I could just get my brother Joshua to record some of his songs for me, I could play them in the background while people looked at my little pottery collection.

Vicarious talent. I love it.