Monday, August 29, 2005

How ya'll doin?

Since we dun had ire fam'le reunion, I thawt I'd share a bit o' sumpum about it in the language we spoke while thar.

Ya see, ma mamma's fam'lae wuz thar thu hole day visitin and carrin own like we'd jist seen em not too long afore that. We allz had us a pritty gud time talkin, lafin, and sum swimmin too. We got thar a leetle afore lunch and sat diyawn to steak, taters, sum fancy kind o salad, and lots o dzerts. It wuz pritty good stuff if I do say so myself, and o corse I do!

After we had sum o that grub, sum people wint ayowt ta go swimmin. I tell ya that lake's pritty nasty these days cause tha pump pulls tha water awf tha bottom an takes tha cold withit, so all's left is that nasty warm stuff an ya fill like ya swimmin in a steamy pot o muk. Well, I din't swim then, but them folks tell me it twernt so bad as all that an sumhows it got sum cold in thar agin. Most tha kids played all afternoon, but we aaadults sat in the shade and shot tha breeze. One o them kids that wuz thar sided ta sleep on thars uncle while he wuza sittin thar an yood a thawt she wuz dayed cauze she'uz so still and all.

Brayondin stayed on up at tha house most a tha day and did his vistin in tha air conDItionin. All in all we had a mitey nice time. We even got ta stay long enough sos they fed us sum suppa to! We got that steak for the second time round an wernt very sad bout that neither. It wuz good stuff an I thank we coud eat liek that everday- ifin weeze rich folks and all.

Weyl, that's bout it. Ituz a fun time and my folks did a good job a puttin on tha dog an all. Thangs look reel nice and itus grate seein everbady! I'z only wish weeze were ariyownd when theys all do thar Chrimas thang, cauze then they go on over to Jan's an ride them fo-wer wheelers and them thangs is fun!

Naw, rilly I like ever one of um and wish I coud see um moe offen.

That's all.

Ok, now that's out of my system and I can move on to other things, like the children being sick on Sunday and the great weather we're having, and Brandon's obsession with tornadoes, and the rain outside- no wait now it isn't raining- oh, nevermind, it is agai- nope....we'll you get the picture. It only rains out there today when I am out there trying to do something. So... now that I've mentioned all the other things, I'll leave you with the last comment I heard James say for the evening:

"This is my spaceship. I will TAKE it!... Hello! Talk!... What!? This is a plastic! I am a airplane. I can fly up in the air...I can walk on my wheels, YES SIR! This IS a plastic...."

Ok, so he's not stopping anytime soon, but I am!

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Saturday morning bliss! For the first time since we've been down here, all the children slept through the night on a Friday night! And this morning they are enjoying Robin Hood on our little DVD player (happy birthday to me). Praise the Lord for sleep! Posted by Picasa

Rachel's Dedication last Sunday, take 2. Posted by Picasa

Rachel's Dedication last Sunday. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Stories of Yesteryear

In honor of some of the childish stunts my little ones have pulled recently, (pouring gasoline/oil mix all over the garage, waking me up 4 times a night for the last week, walking on top of the piano, pulling Jeff out of his crib and dumping the whole thing over, hammering animal crackers into the carpet…etc…) I’ve decided to write a post about some things I remember doing as a child that probably didn’t thrill my parents- if they ever knew about them. So sit back, relax and enjoy some “stupid” ideas.

When I was about 5, I remember living at our house on Lake Dow Road- a brown split-level house that had an asphalt driveway on one side and a gravel turn-around going through the front yard. I also remember when it changed from dirt to gravel. Anyway, the driveway went straight back to the left side of the house and then curved right and went down a little hill to the carport where the house actually was. Because of this hill, we had to get our toys up to the level driveway if we wanted to play for any length of time.

One day Jeff and I were playing on the driveway with a wagon and a high chair. I’m not sure whose bright idea it was, but somehow we ended up with the high chair in the wagon and me sitting high and mighty on top. Jeff was pulling as hard as he could and down the driveway we went - about 5 or 6 feet and then I fell out and scraped up my knee pretty bad. In fact, I had a scar there for years after from that stunt.


When Roy was about 18 mos. he broke his leg falling off a slide about the same height as the one at Fairwood. It was that big thick bone that’s hardest to break, but forgive my ignorance in bone names - that thigh bone. So there he was with a cast from his waist all the way down one leg and halfway down the other with a hole in the middle for changing diapers (ewwww!) So there he was one day, laying in his special chair in the carport, I suppose getting some fresh air, when I noticed a great neglect - no one had signed his cast!!! Well, I took quick steps to remedy this. (I was 7) I went and grabbed a couple of markers and went back to Roy to sign his cast. I should mention at this point that I am confident that my father was standing less that 6 feet away from me grilling something, but of course, he had his back turned to me. Sign away, that’s what I did. When I had accomplished my name I stepped back to admire my work and realized that it looked silly with just one name on there. So, I fixed that problem too. I wrote some other names on that cast. Daddy, Mother, Jeff, Frank, Molly (dog), Danger (dog), Roscoe (cat)…on and on. I wrote my friends names from church, and many others that I could think of. As I remember, I had just about covered the top of the entire cast with names when my Dad turned around and saw what I was doing. I don’t think he was happy because he took my markers away and said something about people writing their own names. I was a little disappointed - mostly because I wanted him to have names there and all those other people weren’t there to write their names. I was being helpful! *Ahem*


The next one is about my creativity. First, the time that I “won twenty dollars”! You see school had just begun and I was in the third or fourth grade - I’m not sure which, but as usual, Jeff and I ended the summer with our birthdays and then we were off to school for the fall. It was sometime during the fall quarter that the school had a lady come and present a program to the kids called, “Bet You Can’t Do That” In her show, she had all sorts of tricks that “couldn’t be done." I’ll explain more in a minute.

When I came home, my mother found twenty dollars in my back pack and asked me where it came from. I told her about the thing at school and how the lady asked for a volunteer to come up and stand next to a wall. She put a twenty dollar bill on the floor and said, “Bet you can’t pick that up without bending your knees or falling over.” The idea was that if the kid could pick it up, he could keep the money. Looked easy to me, so I told my mom that was what happened. At the time I was very flexible and limber and could put my limbs into a number of weird shapes. (Ok, an example - lay on your stomach, with most of your weight on your neck and raise your feet up behind you, curling them so that you place your feet in front of your shoulders on the floor. Sort of like a backwards circle.) Anyway, I figured that standing next to the wall was easy enough, so that’s what I said. My mom called the school to see if anyone won the money and the receptionist blew my cover and said that it was an impossible trick and that no one could do it.

Mom came back and said I was lying. Where’d you get the money? Well, I found it on the playground in a tire. Why didn’t someone else find it, she wanted to know. Well, because no one else was playing on that, of course…

To make a long story short, I finally confessed that I had stolen the money out of Jeff’s dresser drawer because for my birthday I had gotten a new wallet and I wanted to show it off at school with some money in it. Needless to say, I got a spanking and worst of all, I had to give the money back. I think about that lie now and realize just how stupid I sounded.

But, just in case you think I learned my lesson, in sixth grade I had another battle with truth. (Of course all in between too, but this one was dumb.) I always rode the bus from my school across town to the Elementary School and then walked across the street to my Grandma’s house where my mom would come and pick me up. One day, I stopped to visit a friend’s mom in the Elementary School and then ran as fast as I could over to Grandma’s house to make up for lost time. I should mention that it was OK for me to visit with this person and I had done so in the past and would not have gotten in trouble for it.

For some reason, when I got to Grandma’s and she asked me why I was out of breath, I said, “The bus driver kicked me off the bus down at the chiropractor’s office and I had to run the whole way here so I wouldn’t be late.” (Oh WHY, WHY, WHY?) This began quite the ordeal in our house, because Grandma was horrified that I had been kicked off the bus “for no reason” and then my parents got involved. I remember being up late that night, sitting on my white canopy double bed, crying my heart out, begging my parents to believe me that I did get kicked off the bus. I think the scariest moment and also the moment of confession came when my Dad stormed into my room with the school handbook opened to the page about bus drivers and regulations. He told me that the bus driver would be fired for doing such a thing and that I had better tell the truth because that driver was going to loose his job if what I was saying was true. I broke. I told them everything as accurately as possible. The only trouble was, they didn’t really believe me because the truth had no motive for a lie. I hadn’t done anything wrong. Oh, the agony of that day! What a stupid thing to do. The truth wasn’t even believable. I got a spanking for that one and for a long time afterwards my parents didn’t know what to belive. So much for creative stories…they can get you in pretty big trouble.

There you have it: stories from my childhood to show that I guess my children come by their silly ideas honestly. And what ever doesn’t match up with me, they get fom Brandon. He’s got some good ones too, only he was more sinister in his ideas.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Yesterday's Top Quote

Jonathon shoved James into the bench at the fireplace. James cried and Jonathon said, “I’m sorry James.” James, wailing, replied, “I just want you to let me die!”

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Jeff has a slight obsession with having his picture taken! Posted by Picasa

Grandmother and Rachel Posted by Picasa

Fun at Grandmother's house: Jonathon, Aunt Ruth, & James Posted by Picasa

Jonathon's Art Work Posted by Picasa

Friday, August 19, 2005


This has been a fun week. We had lots of time visiting. Pari and Joshua came over for the day on Wed. Dan came for dinner. Bruce and Jeff Lyman saw us in the evening and spent the night on the way to FL. They took us out for a yummy breakfast the next morning- all of us. ( I got one of those “proud parent” comments, “You have very well behaved children!” Whoooo Hoooo, that just makes all this work worth something. It’s nice to know that even though I’m in the middle and can’t see them being good for all the wrong things I continually correct, someone else can see it. Ahhh, what a blessing!) Ok, anyway, we also spent an evening with my family. My Dad taught me how to cook on a charcoal grill. Yes….that’s right- I’ve been spoiled all my life with a gas grill (one that was on the house gas, not a can, so I just turned it on, and lit it. Wala- a hot grill. So he taught me how to do it so I could cook out more often. It rained- I mean poured the whole time we were cooking the hamburgers and then as soon as we were done, it stopped raining. Today, we went to see good ole Aunt Bertha. She’s 102 yrs. Tomorrow. We celebrated with cupcakes and ice cream. The boys climbed the magnolia tree like I used to when I was little, and they picked figs from her tree in the back yard. We sat on the back porch in the old rockers and I felt like I was taking a step back in time about 50 years to when people sat on their porches a lot more oftern around here.

Then, for lunch we visited the McDonald’s on the corner- which has a great Playland and the boys got tons of energy out and left it there. (James got McDonalds and Aunt Bertha confused and kept calling her Aunt Donald. She thought that was hilarious.) So, then naps, a bit of preSabbath cleaning and now I’m looking forward to a relaxing day tomorrow of…hmmmm…, dishes, toys, and uhh…waking up early. Doesn’t that sound relaxing. It does to me, Brandon will be off to help! Yipee!

Happy Sabbath! Oh, and Happy 25th Birthday Ye Olde Twitterpated One!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Blog Spam!?!

Ok, I had no idea just how abnoxious people could be! Who could possibly sink to this level of BLOG SPAM! I'm so frustrated.

And while writing this I discovered that Jonathon made some lovely murals on the walls in the basement apartment here. He found a black permanent marker under the couch down there. How wonderful. Actually he hit eight different locations with his weapon. I took pictures, so I'll post them soon. Thankfully, those are about the only walls that haven't been freshly repainted. I hope we can get it off... Argh!

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Another week down the...twirly slide.

Caution, this is long.

OK, I should really post more often because when I do get around to posting, I feel as though I have a book to write about all the things that have happened to us since the last time I wrote. (Let that be a lesson to all you slackers out there- it gets harder the longer you wait.) Now that I have successfully given myself a little lecture, I will proceed with more interesting information. Let’s see, I’ll start back with Monday…I should mention that this process involves getting out my calendar. Frankly, I can’t remember that far back in my life these days…anyone know why??

Ok, Monday- Jeff went to the chiropractor. I’m happy to report that he is doing much better since he has been. He was doing this weird crook-the-body-to-the-side thing everytime we picked him up, so that’s why we went in the first place. The dr. said his atlas was way out of line, so he used some little thing that looks like a steel syringe with a rubber ball on the end to punch his neck lightly. It worked like a charm. Jeff no longer curls over to the side and whines every time he’s lifted. Yeah. Of course, this was his second trip and we were just having it slightly adjusted. We also attempted to cut grass on Monday. I mowed some with the push mower- trimming stuff, and Brandon attempted with the lawn tractor, but the belt on the mower deck broke and we had to order one to be picked up the next day. The only other thing on my calendar from Monday is a note to take out the trash. This has to be a calendar event here otherwise, I would never remember that we have to haul it to the street. Since that has no story to it, we’ll move on to Tuesday.

Tuesday, my Grandmother came over and we had a nice time visiting with her. She watched the kids play for a while and then insisted on doing some work around here. I grudgingly handed over all my ironing (haha- no grudges to be found) and she did it all! Hooray, all the church clothes ironed BEFORE Sunday morning- what an idea! She also stayed and had lunch with us. That was a fun time and we hope to repeat it in the future! Tuesday afternoon was grass cutting. I think you can actually get out there and watch the grass get taller it’s growing so fast right now. Ok, before we cut, we got to put the mower together. That was fun (ahem…). Both of us spent quite a while crawling around on the garage floor trying to figure out how the belt went on, getting the tension right, putting the bolts and pins in, taking things apart again and then putting them on correctly, and then we cut some grass. Brandon decided he should use the lawn tractor and I should do the trimming. I’m starting to understand what those first year Bible School guys feel like when someone says, “Ok, why don’t you start there.” (Pointing to the bank-of-death) In Brandon’s defense, I should say that most of what I did was on level, or almost level ground- and I quite enjoyed it.

Wednesday, we had the whole world here. Diane R. stopped over for the night on her little road trip, Bryan and Sarah came for a little visit around lunch, Julia and Paula Y. came over with a neighborly hello and fresh homemade bread (yummy), and Roy dropped in for something, though I don’t remember what now. Diane later treated our family to Chick-fil-a for dinner. We ordered it and brought it home- and a good thing too, cause it was raining cats and dogs out there and you could almost here them barking! Well, it was really heavy rain (in fact, today is the first day that I remember it not raining at all since we’ve been here!) and I couldn’t hardly see the cars in front of me for the pounding of droplets. Brandon said that while we were out, lightning hit across the road and that and the thunder were so loud that the entire house shook! Pretty impressive stuff if you ask me! I’m convinced that there is a God just by watching the weather!
So dinner was great and we had a lovely visit with Diane. Brandon had mid-week meeting and then we went right on to Thursday.

Thursday I did some boring household stuff and then the boys and I had lunch at the park with a friend of mine and her two children. Jeff refused to play or sit, or eat, so he went home (the park is across the street from the house- very nice) Jonathon and James stayed and had pb&j sandwiches and cold green beans. For all those that think I tortue my kids by “making” them eat cold green beans, I’ll just say that this is a coveted snack at our house and you should try it sometime. It has to be “Del Monte Whole Blue Lake Green Beans” from the can. You rinse them off, put them in a pot, cover with water, add some chicken boullion, and cook them until their good and dead. Then they are yummy little things and it’s very much like chips- no nutritional value whatsoever! So there- green beans it is. My Grandma also made dinner for us that day and I went to a visitation for a funeral. (A Sunday School teacher of mine from way back when passed away.)

Friday was another day to cut grass. You see, the grass was again tall enough to lay out neat rows of hay. Of course, the mower wasn’t cutting right, so we investigated and Brandon discovered that the bolt was on upside down. After that little problem was solved, it worked like a charm. Of course, working on it took just long enough for me to do all the trimming and the banks with the push mower J. I rested that afternoon and Brandon did the rest of the lawn. That evening Grandma and Aunt Claudia came for a visit and we had ice cream. Then the Sabbath was upon us and we collapsed in to little heaps in the middle of the room. (Not really, but rest was looking mighty nice)

In honor of the Sabbath, James decided to begin the day at 3:45am. We put him back to bed and Jonathon as well after James woke him up. Actually we put James back to bed about 4 or five times before I gave up and just stuck them in front of a movie. Brandon and I ignored them until about 8:30 when playing progressed to a noise level that was prohibitive to sleeping. We then, in our sleep deprived state, immediately deciced that it was the perfect day to take our children- all four of them- to the Atlanta Zoo! We cleaned and prepared and around 11am, we finally headed out for the animal kingdom. I think it was a good trick actually. It wore them out so that by the time they got in bed that night, they were “plum tuckered out”. They really enjoyed the animals and paticularly the turtles, snakes, and elephants. We got to see the elephants being weighed and doing tricks and that was pretty impressive.

Sunday we died. Not really. Brandon had a sermon, which he preached to a small audience and we ate a quick lunch of chips and cheese, all “God’s chillin’” took a nap. Brandon and I got a little nap also! Whoooo hoooo! After naps, we headed to Dan and Pari’s for dinner. Dinner was yummy lasagna. We also watched the boys (ours and Joshua- almost 3) bash and try to drown each other in the pool. Since the fathers were watching this and not saying anything, Pari and I just decided we better not pay attention. They actually swam before dinner, so were all cleaned up and dressed to eat. After dinner we relaxed for a bit and James found himself standing in the pool again, fully dressed. Later he told me, “I’m all wet. I stepped in a puddle.” Huh! A puddle. Really!?! We took a walk down the street together and that was the most interesting part. While we were walking, there were a couple of black guys doing stunts on their bicycles going the other way. James commented on them, but did he say, “Hey, look at those cool guys doing stunts on their bicycles. I wish I could do that.” NO. He says in his QUIET VOICE, “HEY LOOK AT THOSE MONKEYS!” Ahhhhh……children…….are so embarrasing! I actually don’t think the guys heard him and I’m thankful, because otherwise, we all might be murdered tonight. James and I had a nice little argument about whether they were really monkeys or people. Just in case you wonder, I was for them being people and I finally won James over to my side. After our walk, we had some delicious dirt cake and then headed home. Children went to bed. Phone calls were made. Last minute things taken care of. Blogs updated. And now I’m looking forward to feeding Rachel and going to sleep. Perhaps this week will be equally interesting! And maybe I can tell you in shorter write ups than this one.

PS- Happy Birthday Gretchen!

Saturday, August 06, 2005

"We are here, we are here, we are here"

We arrive safely in Georiga this past Wednesday. I’m happy to report that except for some crankiness on behalf of the wife, everyone was pleasant and the trip went very well. On Wednesday we left the hotel a little after 7am and drove until around 10:45 at which time we stopped at a McDonald’s we discovered on a previous trip with a great playland. We didn’t’ stop for long though because it was being hosed down and washed, so we jumped back in the car and kept on going until it was closer to lunch time. We finally stopped for lunch at a rest area and had leftover cold pizza from the dinner the night before. I was quite proud of myself for eatting cold pizza and saving all those pennies. (I hate cold pizza- so somewhere in heaven there must be an extra treasure for that effort right?) Ok, so we ate pizza and then stopped in the late afternoon at a Burger King that had a playground. We each got a shake and the boys played. They had an especially good time because the found a puddle inside the tunnels and decided to wallow in it, so we changed some clothes before we left. That day was also James’ birthday and I continually told him “Happy Birthday” the whole day. Most times he would reply something like, “NO! Don’t say that! It’s NOT my birthday!” And then I would laugh at him.

We arrived at the parsonage around 6 pm to find that we couldn’t get in because some wonderful family members had taken the key, but thankfully we found a way. After that it was all about settling in and the family memebers came and repented of their errors and paid for their transgressions by staying and helping us unpack. Actually, they cleaned out the van, unloaded the last of the stuff, played with the children, fixed dinner, unpacked the kid’s suitcases, and cleaned up from supper. So, I’d say they more than made up for the key issue and all in all it was a pleasant transition into our temporary home.

Thursday, I finished unpacking the suitcases and we also had a small party for James. My sisters made a cute cake with a train going around the edge of the top and balloons and people on top that sort of looked like a circus theme. We had sandwiches and cake and ice cream and then James opened his presents. He got a soccer ball and foot ball, some Kid K’nex, and a huge Buzz Lightyear. Several people were very generous with their gifts and he’s been having a blast with his stuff every since. That day, my sisters were over later in the afternoon and helped me label all the clothes I brought to put into a clothing sale. They were all done really quickly and then they loaded them up and took them, so I didn’t have to think about them anymore. That was marvelous!

Friday, I took the boys to “Grandmother’s” house. That would be my parents house. We planned to go swimming, but when we arrived, the boys were so interested in all the toys they had in the den that we were there for about and hour before we could coax them into getting into their suits to swim. Well, swim we did. Jonathon especially had a good time paddling around in the water. James mostly just wanted to play on the steps and Jeff liked being carried around in the water everywhere. I went under water with Jeff once and was pleased that he didn’t come up screaming. All of my boys seem to be a little timid around the water, but I think that’s just because it’s not familiar.

Today, we are planning to go to the park across the street. They have already been once, but were going again and having lunch there.

Tomorrow should be a pretty busy day, but I’m looking forward to it. Brandon will be preaching, there is a pot luck, then I go with mom to shop at the clothing sale, and I’m sure we’ll come up with something else for the evening- like I think they still have sports in the yard here. So, that’s been our activities thus far. I’m not too overwhelmed yet and so far the children have been pretty well entertained with the newness of things. There are the little learning curves- Jeff isn’t in a crib here, and the boys don’t know what’s off limits, but it’s all coming along nicely.

One nice thing that has made the transition smooth is all the work my family put into making it comfortable for us when we arrived. My Grandmama brought over groceries and other necessities for laundry and kitchen so we wouldn’t have to do a major groceries trip for a while, and my mom sent over toys, books, extra dishes, some kid friendly things like a plastic tablecloth, and plastic cups, a crib for Rachel, and many little misc. things that just make living with a preschool club easier.

Well, that’s about all I have time for right now- but you get the idea. There are some hurdles, but things are going reasonably well and for that I thank many people and give God the glory for smooth sailing thus far.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Trip Update

Since we have internet at the hotel, I wanted to say, we arrived in VA safely at our hotel around 6pm. We had Pizza Hut deliver and that took care of dinner needs. Later we took a walk so the boys would expend some energy and then we came back for bedtime. I tried to pack light for the overnight stay...I also got to wash some clothes at the hotel. I packed ONLY 4 outfits for Rachel for these two days and she went through three of them today :-( I had to wash so she would have something to wear tomorrow if she messed up the outfit she's currently wearing. Of course, since I went to the trouble to wash everything she probably won't get a spot on her for next three days! Oh well. It's done, just in case. To bed, to bed...and then back in the car.

Monday, August 01, 2005

On our way

Tomorrow we head out into the wild blue yonder for the land south of the Mason Dixon. We're looking forward to fresh peaches, warm weather, and central air conditioning. Of course, there are people there we want to see as well. We'll be there for about 7 weeks. So, while I may not blog for the next few days of travel, I'll be filling you in on our events down there as I can.

For now, the job is pack, pack, pack....oh, wait- that's not how it goes here. Here, it goes like this:

"Jonathon, go get your blanket. (pack) James quit throwing boxes down the stairs (go get boxes back) Jeff don't close that door again (open the door) Jeff please don't dump out the laundry basket, all those clothes were folded already (get said basket and reinsert clothes) (pack) (feed Rachel) Boys, I need you to quit playing Captian Hook and Peter Pan with coat hangers- it's too violent for me right now. (Take hangers away, then pack) Ok, time for lunch!"

At this point, packing consists of Rachels clothes pulled out on the bed- some of them anyway and the last loads of laundry in the washing machine. You may wonder what I'm doing typing on the computer if I have all this stuff to do.

Well, I'm preserving my sanity. A couple of minutes of down time and then I'll get back to the race...right (Don't worry- it's not quite that bad, just almost. :-)