Monday, August 30, 2010


No, not that NKOTB.

That NKOTB must have been a little past my screaming teenage groupie years.  I could never quite understand the appeal.  But then again, I serioulsy loved Milli Vanilli, so my musical taste should be openly criticized and questioned.

We have a much cuter NKOTB. Meet Cowboy.

He is our neighbor's new little Chorkie (chihuahua- yorkie mix) and he is just about as rootin' tootin' cute as can be. The girls are utterly charmed.

Harry is too.  They have already had their first play date.  All the butt sniffin' you could ever imagine.  My word.

Hope this block's big enough for the two of them. 

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The End of a Season

It's been so long since I have blogged, that I don't even know where to begin again.  I just know that I am feeling a little nostalgic, relieved, sad, happy, confused ( ya think?) about the fact that our Summer 2010, is coming to a close.  Oh, we might still score a nice sun soaked day at the lake, weird Iowa weather permitting, but really, this summer is a done deal.

I will remember many things about this summer, some good and some bad.  Seems like we were always busy, but yet feel like there was so much more that we wanted to do too.  I only know that it just flew by. And that is both a literal and figurative interpretation for a pilot wife.

Marissa - what did Marissa do this summer?  Well, most importantly she turned 10....10.10.10.   Really? That time flew by faster than this summer.  The pediatrician told us she grew 5 inches this past year.  Yikes.  The girl is growing up, in more ways than height.  I am trying to keep up, but sometimes I just want to lock her up for a years and keep her all to myself.  Alas, she took a liking to softball this summer, took her first big overnight (make that several overnights) trip to her Grandma's a lengthy 7 hours away, starred in a major supporting role, and along with slumber parties, pool parties and a burning desire for a cell phone, she would like more of all the above.  Guess the whole locking her away thing ain't gonna work.

Maren.  Maren and I got to spend lots of time together this summer.  Mostly at night.  In our bed.  During thunderstorms.  The thunderstorms have stopped , but unfortunately Maren has taken a liking to our bed and sleeping next to momma.  Sigh.  She's a first grader now you know.  Big stuff. Until bedtime.  Then she wants to cuddle in close.  She's a hard one to resist.  She's decided she doesn't really like t-ball or soccer, but loves to swim.  This year she learned how to go off the board and down the slide on her own. She makes a good fish and a monkey.  Now, if only she would stay in her own bed. We would all be in a much happier, less sleep deprived place.

One of the not so good things about this summer was admitting my Dad to a nursing home.  We always knew this might be a possibility, but we really hoped we could avoid it.  Mom was starting to develop some health problems of her own, and needed to go back to work this August.  Dad was improving and seemed to be getting stronger, but not quite strong enough.

Another huge problem was the lack of nursing home beds here in our small town.  We were number 10 on the list, so we were looking at a facility about 20 miles away.  So, one day after work, I headed there to check it out.  Nice staff.  Private rooms.  Just not home. I got back in the car and cried and prayed in frank desperation the whole way home.  I just couldn't see us "leaving" Dad there.  I didn't know what to say to mom.  Turns out she had something to tell me.  In the hour and half I was gone, the director of the nursing home in town called and told mom they had a room for dad. Miracle of miracles, all of the nine people ahead of us turned the room down!

If there is anything I have learned in dealing with dad's illness, it is that we are not in control.  We have tried to stay ahead of things and imagine best and worst case scenarios and plan accordingly, but it has always worked out with some twist, that only God could provide for.  And although I realize this and I am so grateful for these unexpected answers to prayer, it has been hard. There were days on weeks of waking up to this deep and profound sadness.  Guilt, hopelessness, loss, and an eerie feeling when I would drive up mom and dad's driveway walk in the door, and not see him sitting in his chair. Maren says it too.  "It just isn't the same without Grandpa there."

It is getting better.  After some rough days, Dad is adjusting.  I think we all are, to some extent. He is slowly getting used to the routine, has gotten to know the staff well enough to give them a little good natured grief, and I think he enjoys some of the programs and activities they have.  He and my Grandma have a standing Friday afternoon bingo date.  I feel a huge sense of relief in knowing that he is safe.  That I won't have to walk into their house to check on him and find him hurt or worse has won out over the "what if we had tried harders".  I hope too that Mom has a little more time to take care of herself and her health.   It is all uncharted territory.  You hear stories and read books and might even be a nurse, but its a whole new journey when it is your family involved.  I hope I have finally learned to follow and not try to navigate.

So it is the end of one season and the beginning of another.  New beginnings mean new hope.  I hope for a good school year for the girls.  I hope Mom and Dad adjust and find a different sort of happiness in this new chapter of their lives. I hope we and my brothers and thier families get to enjoy them both for a nice long time.  And I hope for sleep. Better go work on that.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Perfect Pairings Job 9:27

Job 9:27 (New International Version)

27 If I say, 'I will forget my complaint,

I will change my expression, and smile

Hope your week brings you lots of unexpected smiles!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Happy....and a Teensy Tiny Bit Sad

Let me just begin by saying this post is long overdue.  Sweet Marissa has been 10 years old for a good week and a half at least, and I am just getting too tell you all about it.  That's right, you heard it hear first, my sweet baby girl turned 10 this year.  How in the world does that happen so fast? 

Marissa chose cinnamon rolls for her birthday breakfast. 

We invited a few of her friends along to a local water park and had a super good time.  The day was roasting hot, but this water park is tucked into the shore line of a small lake and it was nice a breezy and the view wasn't too bad either.

This is the fun thing about having a summer birthday, although sometimes I think Marissa would really like to celebrate her actual birthday with her classmates at school, and I am horrible at remember her half birthday.

So anyway it was a thumbs up sort of day as Lupita demonstrates so well.

Even the Captain and Princess Maren got in on the fun.

It was a perfect day.  I hope Marissa remembers it as such too.  The year she turned double digits.  A full decade.  All those crazy milestones that seem to have come too  fast and furious for her Momma.

But it is so fun to watch her grow up and start to figure out who she is and how she is going to get there.  She'll get by with a little help from her friends.  And hopefully her Momma too.

But I miss her.  She has been gone to visit the Captain's family down in Witchita the last couple days.  I dropped her off, told her I loved her, and drove away in my car - dry eyed.  A few blocks later, my nose twiched, and my eyes stung, and I had to swallow hard a few times. So much for being a brave Momma.  When we were getting her packed, she asked if I was going to miss her.  I said of course I would. And she smirked at me a bit and told me this would get me ready for when she leaves for college.  GULP.

See you tomorrow Sweet Girl!