August 30, 2011

Dirt + water= fun

5 Neighborhood kids + gardening spades + dirt + a well connected hose = tons of summer fun.

August 19, 2011

It's been a long week

A little over a week ago I woke up in the middle of the night to put Meg back to bed and was three steps away from the bed when I ended up on the floor. It took me a minute to realize my world was spinning. Fast and clockwise. When I woke up in the morning I knew something was very wrong. The next day I spent in the hospital undergoing various tests and checking on the peanut happily sucking all of my energy and growing like it's supposed to be. Diagnosis:vestibular neuritis, it causes vertigo. Vertigo is not serious, it's just debilitating. I have spent most of the last week in bed.  Finally I am up walking again, but still not driving. Justin's been on shift work, so he's not getting home early and his schedule is making it very hard for him to help. It could be worse, right? He could be deployed.
   While laying in bed or sitting on my couch watching the world spin, I have had cause to be grateful. I have the most wonderful friends who have jumped in to care for me and my kids. They have been taken to the park to play,  to the library and school shopping. One sweet friend came over with her grand daughter and helped me put 20 meals in my freezer for the future. (While I am not looking forward to it and hoping it won't happen this time, I am preparing for bed rest later in this pregnancy.) I have had rides to doctor's appointments and visits from well wishers. Groceries have showed up,  my dishes have been washed and my laundry has been done, although not by me. When Meg suddenly realized one day this week that none of her shoes fit her any more and she was tired of being Drizella, a friend showed up at my house and took us to get her new shoes. Sparkly shoes, of course.
  I am reminded again and again how to look for the blessings in the midst of despair and illness. Sometimes it seems as if you can't take another step. Perhaps on your own you can't. That's why we have prayer and friends and community. Today, I am glad for many things and my heart is full for every deed, thought, prayer and text that has come the way of my family. Here's to better days.... I much prefer being on the other end of  service.

August 7, 2011

We can do hard things

Some things are hard and some things are easy. One of the things we talk about in our family all of the time is our ability to do hard things. We have the ability, the faith and the support to try something new and scary. We may not succeed the very first time, but we can try again and again. We also talk a lot about not making others feel bad for thinking something is hard when we think it may be easy for us. Everyone has their own fears and stumbling blocks and we are all different. If we use a little compassion in dealing with others and instead focus on helping them do hard things, everyone feels better about themselves.
   A few months ago Meg developed a fear of dogs. Not just a mild fear, as in not wanting to pet them, but an all out, cross the street, stay far far away fear. They scared her to her toes. She was knocked down by a bulldog and after that, she wanted nothing to do with any kind of dog at all. The neighbors barking dogs in their yard scared her when she was outside, even though she knew they couldn't get over to her.
   Today for no other reason than her brother was standing next to her, Meg decided to pet a friend's dog. This is the most calm, sweet dog on the planet. She allows her little girl to dress her up, haul her around and play mercilessly with her. Meg took her time but managed to sit down and pet the sweet dog. She was so proud of herself. Thanks to Ms. Christine who took the picture and was sweet and patient enough to allow her to try again and again until she was ready.
   This was a hard thing for Meg. Just something small for others. I have no illusions that this is the end of her fear, but know she has proven to herself that she can do something even when it's scary. She's proud of herself and we are happy for her too. Small steps lead to great places.

August 6, 2011

A Pinkalicious Day

    Just after Meg's birthday party a friend sent me a note that Pinkalicious, the Musical was coming to our area performed by the Junior Theater. I bought tickets in May. I waited over a month to tell her about it, but I should have waited longer. It's an eternity when you are 4 to wait more than 3 days for something fun you just can't WAIT to do. Today was FINALLY the day.

 We headed out to the Casa Del Prado theater in Balboa Park for our day of fun. It was a short play but very fun with 7 musical numbers and lots of costume changes, which we are still talking about here at home. The dancing Cupcakes golden legs are also a topic of conversation. The first thing she said as we were walking away is that she loved it and she wants to see another play right away. I love how excited she was and how much she enjoyed herself. My favorite song... You Get What You Get and You Don't Get Upset.

   After leaving Balboa Park we wandered around a little and found the Goodwill Boutique on 16th. My baby sister spent all last year telling people she wasn't turning 30 until she had a Dooney and Bourke handbag. Her birthday was a couple of months ago, and she did turn 30 without it, but today I found the perfect bag at the perfect price. A mere $35 for this darling bag that you can find for full retail price here. I guess that goes to show that great things happen after the big 3-0. Meg likes "the B bag" a lot too and tried to convince me to let her keep it. By the time you turn 30, I told her, you might just have one, but it won't be this one.

   We left out shopping expedition in search of lunch. I tried to talk her into a few different places we haven't been before, but she was stuck on MCD's. It's her favorite place. I can't eat anything good there anymore because of diabetes, but she had a good lunch and I did have my diet coke with sugar free vanilla syrup. Ah, the indulgence.
  We got home about the same time as Dad and Bug who had gone to a new chief meet and greet BBQ. They had a great time, got a little too much sun and were glad to be home. Meg jumped on dad's lap and told him all about the costumes, songs and pink cupcakes that were for sale afterwards that Mom wouldn't stand in line to get for her. She wants to go and see Harold and the Purple Crayon next. I don't have a clue if she knows what that's about, but I remember it from my childhood. We might be looking for tickets sometime soon. If you are in the area, join us. It's going to be fun!


August 3, 2011


The Big Kid spent the week at Cub Scout Day Camp this week. As crazy as it is to be at camp with 300 of your closest friends, it was really well organized. He complained that there was too much down time waiting for activities to begin, but I think they did an amazing job this year running things. As part of your week at camp, it's required that a parent come and volunteer at least one day. My day happened to be the same day as BB gun shooting.

   Rangemaster at the gun range was just a little scary, but I think that's a good thing when you deal with groups of 14-16 10 years olds all day. He got the attention he needed and the kids responded really well. He gave clear, concise instructions and didn't allow idle chatter on the range. I know those guys are generous with their time and resources. They gave up a week of their vacation time to come and shoot guns with Cub Scouts. Not a bad gig if you love it.

  Bug did really well on the range. I wasn't aware of any previous shooting experience, but he said he did it last year. This year he got a perfect score. The only one in camp to do it from the bench. In a couple of days they try again from keeling. If he aces that, he qualifies for his belt loop. He was pretty proud of his score, and so was his dad. He was very methodical in getting his equipment ready and lining up his shots. He wasn't fast by any means, but he was dead on accurate. I am glad this is the day I got to attend so I can take a few shots myself. With my camera.
  I hope he's able to get some great lessons from scout camp this year. Like even when things don't move fast enough for you they are moving along just the same. And it's good to take time to set up your shots, and your life. It can make things go well in the long run. Stick close to your friends, they make life more fun. And ALWAYS keep your water bottle full. It's hot out there!