Sunday, May 31, 2009

Lion's, and Tigers, and Bears...Oh, My!...

Those of you from Nebraska who have been to the the Omaha Zoo (you know who you are!) are going to be able to sympathize with me on this one. We are going to the zoo today!...But not THAT zoo.

I have been to SO many zoos! I have been to a zoo in Canada, St.Louis, Milwaukee, and more than I can even remember at this moment! And I have been found wandering through each zoo muttering, "Henry Dorley zoo is BETTER!" or "The zoo in Omaha does it like this!" or "This simply does not compare to the zoo I went to when I was a kid." (insert snooty voice here).

Now, I don't know if it is because that is the zoo I grew up with, or because I have been homesick when visiting the other zoos, but I think it is just because...


Those of you from Nebraska can say with me "Nebraskans get things RIGHT!" So I am going to the zoo today, and I will make every effort to choke down the words, "Omaha zoo does it betterrrr...choke...gasp...k...k...k..."

But in the meantime, my camera is charged (finally), and I will do my best to get some great pictures!

Now, if I can just keep the zoo operators from thinking my kids are monkeys -and allow me to bring them home- we will be doing GOOD!

Pictures to follow!

I need to remember to CHARGE my camera...

I have forgotten for three consecutive days to charge my camera! "How can this happen!?", you ask, well, I ...uhm...well, LIFE, I guess. But anyway, it doesn't matter why, it is just that there are so many GREAT moments I missed! Like this one,,,where Noelle actually licked -yes! LICKED- one of those rubber bouncing balls. *Giggle, giggle* It was SO funny. It happened to roll over a plate at the open house we attended, and she picked up the ball and licked off the ranch dressing! See... isn't it funny...OH, I don't have a picture. DRAT! I will just have to substitute with this truly ADORABLE baby picture!

This missed moment is brought to you by electricity! Get it!

And then there was the "Anything on Sale Fruit Salad" I wanted to share. It was all the fruit I could find for a dollar a pound or less. Cantaloupe $1, strawberries $1 (and OH, were they the sweetest and most beautiful strawberries I have ever seen!), Peaches $.99, nectarines $.99, bananas $.59. It turned out SO beautifully! And I put it in my glass dish, and stood there to let my mouth water! Just take a look, and your mouth will water too! Oh, wait! ARGGHHH! I don't have a picture of it. Oh, well. Here is another cute baby picture to take it's place!

This missed moment had been brought to you by Missed Memories Anonymous: Helping you cope with all the things you SHOULD remember, but don't. MMA: get help.

And there was that silly face that Mia makes! I have been trying to get it on camera for years! I finally got her to make it on cue! On, MY! You will laugh SO hard! WAIT! I CAN'T SHOW YOU! Well, this is a bad substitute, but will have to do.
This missed memory had been brought to you by your mother: PLUG IN you camera, Dear!

I think I will have my sweet geek hubby invent a camera with endless life! No batteries, no charging! I am SURE that he can if he puts his mind to it. (Maybe he can use the shutter movement to generate electricity! Hey, anything is possible!) But pending funding for research and YEARS of development, I think I will make it part of my nightly routine to just...oh, REMEMBER TO PLUG IN MY CAMERA! Only I would have this much trouble remembering something this important. So here is the question. What VERY important thing can you -for the life of you- not remember to do? Please tell!

More on this tomorrow

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Trail of Tears, Part I

Noelle has had a VERY long day. With the beautiful weather, the girls have been spending the biggest part of the day playing outside -playing hard! Another such day of hard playing led to this:

Oh, My!

It is such a difficult thing...

when you can't use the swing...

that someone else...

is already SITTING in!

And down our face...

In mingled dirt and saline...

Lies a Trail of Tears...

To be continued...

Ode to Life

I RAN to the bathroom as another wave of nausea rushed over me! Oh, NO! Not again! We WERE NOT in the place to have another baby! Larry had JUST been laid off, we were about to lose our insurance, I had at least 3 accounts I was working on, and we needed the money. For those of you who know, my pregnancies are nine months of torture. I am unable to keep anything down, I am sick multiple times every day with no relief for nine months. Imagine having the flu for nine months! With my oldest it was so bad that I spent the better part of four months in the hospital: 3days in, 2 days out, 5 days in, 4 days out....
So it was a very scary thought that I could be pregnant -as I ran to the bathroom for the fourth time in a half-hour. Lord! What are you doing?? We can't have a baby right now! I HAVE to work! We have NO INSURANCE! God! What are we going to do?! As I struggled with the difficulties ahead, I rolled around in my head if there was ANY way I could continue to work while I was pregnant! (Excuse me, Client, I need to run to the bathroom and be sick. I will be right back. Do you have any breath mints?)
It just didn't seem possible! What were we going to do. I am now the breadwinner! The joy of a child was mingled with fear for our future. But God reminded me of all the times that He had met my needs over the years. He reminded me that a sparrow cannot fall without His knowledge! How much more does He care about our family!
So, I remembered that in HIS will is the best place to be, and if He chose to bless us with a baby right now, then blessings would SO outweigh the hardship. We would never look back from His will. I surrendered, and began to prepare myself emotionally for the long road ahead. I knew that it was going to be beyond hard to deal with everything -and be pregnant. I knew it could very well be the hardest thing I have ever been through. And through the mental shoring up, I began to feel some joy (in the middle of waves of nausea and exhaustion). We were having a BABY! =) And as the days went by, I had much hope for the next nine months!
Then the weakness. I was fading fast. That day we were at a friend's house. As the day went on I was more and more weak, more and more woozy, I was feeling lightheaded (not unusual with pregnancy), but was very anxious to get home. We got home, and I put the kids to bed, and got myself ready for bed, and discovered that I had been bleeding all afternoon. I called the Dr and he told me that there was nothing he could do. He told me to prepare for cramping and bleeding. At first I was dazed, then a little relived. Then the sorrow began to flood over me! What! After the entire time of adjustment and God bringing me to surrender. After letting my fears go, and trusting Him. After all that -He takes her (just guessing on gender based on track record) from me!!? What in the WORLD?! WHY!? Why would God take me through all that: pregnancy, terror, helplessness, surrender to His will -only to SNATCH it from me!
One night I couldn't sleep, and sometime in the wee hours of the morning I asked Him, and a quietness suddenly hit my soul like a blast of cold air. He whispered to my heart "Not now." And that was all He said. That was all that was needed. And the surrender to a changed outlook was in order. God's will was for my surrender -to whatever His will is. He was right! A baby right now is a bad idea, but NO MATTER the path He has for me, I choose to do His will and give myself fully to what He has for me and my family.
I have a child I have never met, but I have so much to be thankful for! Look at the beautiful and wonderful babies He has given me! I think if I didn't have a child (or two, or three) to hold, then this would have been a crippling blow.
I still have to grieve. I have a child that I will never meet in this lifetime. And you know, the thing that really gets me? The things that fill my eyes with tears are all the milestones I will miss. It is the baby smell, tiny fingers and toes, first baby giggle,

and this...

and this...

and this...

and this...

and is there anything in the world sweeter than this?...

and this...

and let's re-visit this one...

It is at the times that I think of these sweet moments that my arms ache to hold my child, and I struggle to remember Whose arms they are in. But I have HOPE! I will see my sweet baby. I will hold that baby -perhaps no longer a baby- in MY arms, and we will have eternity together. And that makes my grief bearable. And I am sure that my grandmother -who always LOVED babies- had her own little kissing party! I also have to remember WHOSE arms *I* am in. That as much as I love my children -present or not- that He loves ME even more than that, and feels my pain, and cries with and for me. I am grateful to have such a Savior. I am so grateful to have such a hope. And with tears running down my face, I can say "ALL is WELL!"

Cracks on the Sidewalk

Isn't she sweet?

Even with Manwich on her face...

She is the picture of sweetness...

And Spunk!

But, there is something you cannot see...

AAACK! "Plumber crack!" Pull up your pants, Noelle!!!

*SIGH* I have MUCH to teach her. Oh, Noelle...

There is nothing like a CRACK on the sidewalk to ruin the view!

Friday, May 29, 2009

MUD knocked on my door today and asked my kids to come out and PLAY!

As the weather grows warmer, I am having a hard time telling where the kids end, and the mud begins!

My GOODNESS! I didn't know you had BROWN hair! I thought you were blond! Oh wait. That is dirt. Yuck.

Yep, all that will be left in the tub is MUD, tonight!

I may have to drain the mud and then give them a REAL bath!

I don't think the pictures do it justice.

There seemed to be so much more dirt at the time!

I think this is one instance where the camera COVERS a flaw. More pounds, less dirt!

Nope, NOT a TAN.

Mom, do you HAVE to take my picture!

YES! I need some evidence of what I did today!

I washed mud from the tub. THAT is what I did!
I have been contemplating what my first post should be like, and I had a GREAT idea at one point, but now I can't remember what it was! Don' t you HATE when that happens! So I have decided to keep it simple! I will show you a picture of what I looked like when I was younger, thinner, and prettier-so you can let THAT be the picture of me that sticks in your head. Here we go:

Would you like to see that again?

Sigh, I am afraid I will never be that size again.

The best thing about these pictures is the baby.

Sigh, I am going to go work out. Maybe I can lose enough to be close to this size before I have to post REAL picture! Nothing like truth in advertising!