Because Your love is better than life, my lips will glorify You.
Psalm 63:3

Monday, August 31, 2009

Semblance of normal





We're not gonna put it off anymore. Today was the first day of Kindergarten! It's official, year 1 of 12/13 has begun. Eeeek! We're homeschooling...in a loose sort of way. I have wonderful, wise friends who are ahead of me on the path, helping me navigate...I bug them periodically with probing questions. And I consult this website often...here ya go, sweet friend, RTS.

While not exactly trembling, there is a level of trepidation...remember, I'm not comfortable with complete and total responsibility. So, let's just say, as I was waking up, I was feeling the pressure. But if today is any indication, I think we will both be fine.

We did our usual couch time, break, then table time. There was not much whining on either of our parts and we finished everything I had planned++++ in under 2 hrs. The efficiency of it makes so much sense to me. We even made bread and began to get organized for our maybe camping trip this weekend...still awaiting information on Sweet Man's next assignment. Now they're outside playing with most of the day ahead of us. And "cheers" to doing school with bedhead - 'cuz who cares!


Sweet Man told me yesterday that he has overheard Bean several times telling people, "My mom is my bwothuh's teachuh." She kept wondering today when she is going to start school. Not yet, dahling.


Ooooo, and we bought a s-weet new camera. It has certainly raised the bar on my photog ski-zills. I'm actually reading the manual...gasp. Get ready for a ker-squillion pictures of my babes. Just what you want to see....


There's Bean in her ubiquitous brown dress...eating Cheez-Its off the floor like a kitty. She does a great job entertaining herself.

Here's hoping your having a close to normal day.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Non plus...

I don't know what to write. I don't know if I should write. Is it even appropriate? I do know that, again, I don't want to forget what I am feeling...but can I articulate it well? Probably not. (Disclaimer: this post is in the "journal entry" genre, not the "eloquently proclaiming to the universe" genre...look elsewhere for that.)

I've given in to better living through chemistry...a sleeping aid at night and my usual 2 cups of coffee in the morning...I'm not exhausted like I was last week. Last week was engulfed in the activity that follows a beloved's death; wow, had no idea. This week, we've slept in, lounged, puttered without progress; been generally useless. I've had time for my emotions to catch up. Not in an incapacitating way, but in a random, intense downpour of feelings that are all along the spectrum; from melancholy to anger to thanksgiving.

I continue to be in awe and thankful that one of my prayers was answered...to be in the right place at the right time to attend/support/bear this physical avalanche with my mom. Somehow God arranged for me to join Sweet Man out in the world, when she wasn't in freefall from more bad news. And I was beside her in the moments that the avalanche surged and pitched and pelted.

I think He did that for my sake...she didn't need me to be there so much...but if I hadn't been, this all would be unbearable.

Not to mention, Sweet Man and I were together celebrating an anniversary/kids safe in the Valley weekend when the final cascade began. We were able to leave and be involved in her last hours.

SM has been with me...I mean, the prop-up, dry my tears, 'go take a nap-I've got this,' grieving for his own loss kind of way.

On the day before my momma passed, he rubbed her feet (he's the official foot masseur.) When I told her he had stepped out for a bit, she said, "Oh, he is such a man." In the good way. They really loved each other. I can't imagine going through this without him.

Timing...I tell you...my Heavenly Father knows what He's doing, indeed.

But, I am overcome often when I realize things like...I should've taken more pictures of her. From April on, I would think "I need to grab my camera" and then second-guess and not want to make her uncomfortable with a documentation of her hair loss. She did not ever become comfortable wearing her "hair-hats," as Bug called them. She much preferred wearing her actual hats. Very cute, I might add. I would tell myself there would be more time for pictures when she is healthy again. What a mistake...my presumption of her discomfort (not even accurate) kept me from capturing precious moments.

Her body's ability to function plunged from April until August, but her emotion and spiritual soundness didn't. She had 4 months of seeing life more clearly, through the "cancer" lens. She had 4 months of people loving on her. Knowing she is now at the best party ever, reuniting with beloveds, playing her dulcimer with no wrong notes, and singing second soprano like never before is great comfort.

But the preeminent emotion of the week is "I can't believe she's gone"...no more chances to take pictures of her cuddling my babes on the couch, no more trips to Trader Joe's, no more "Hi, it's your Momma" on my voicemail, no more walking me to my car in her driveway to tell me " just one more thing." No more.

Friday, August 7, 2009

More Cincinnati




We went for a hike last night with Sweet Man. For those of you keeping score at home, that's a total of 3 Cincinnati parks patronized by our family yesterday. We are certainly getting our money's worth....



Today, we took a trip to the Cincinnati Zoo (half price weekend, uh-huh!!!) Sweet Man and I had been there years ago BK (before kids.) Today it was Bug, Bean, and me. Perfect zoo weather. Fun. Tired. Lots of pictures....and a cool cheetah gibbon video.


















video
P. S. My momma will be evaluated next week to determine how her treatment will proceed. Prayers are always appreciated...there's so much to pray for these days....I should do little else.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Found a gem

Love finding a fun, affordable, run-them-ragged, outdoor activity.... The Hamilton County Parks people really know what they're doing. We traveled 15 minutes to Parky's Ark at Winton Woods: $2/child, $2 for parking (I could have paid $5 for an annual pass....) It's a fun "wet playground" with a large structure in the middle (The Ark) and several features around it. Tough place to keep a camera dry....







I love finding an activity that we don't have to endure for hours to feel like we've gotten our money's worth. I would have stayed longer, but one of us was having an, ahem, equipment problem. I plan to explore their other parks in the coming days.

So we met Daddy for lunch a little earlier than planned. We fed him leftovers at another delightul spot...try this, you carnivores...disregard the Oprah stuff (blech)...the recipe is so worth it. It's one of my new go-to meals...yum....


And just to push the outside-all-day, no-nap envelope...we went to IKEA. Very interesting place. I could certainly spend a boatload of money there if I was furnishing a house...uuuhhh...but have been cautioned not to do so right now. The kicker is, that a body is routed through the 2 levels of gi-normous store, with little chance of escape. We finally got out and were pleased to find a little snack bar at the end and rewarded ourselves with lingonberry and vanilla frozen yogurt cones ($1@.) Reward = food, in my world.

Does anyone agree that this was maybe the most beautiful day today? Wow.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

the Queen City


Back in the arms of Sweet Man...so nice. Well, when he is not at work...that would be awkward. But he's not working so many crazy hours here, so there is more potential hug time.

Cincinnati is a good place to be right now. And being on the road is as enjoyable as I remember. We are living in the lovely, new Residence Inn West Chester...really nice....There is an indoor pool and whirlpool (our suits are a few shades lighter thanks to that hot tub...no matter...it was time for new ones anyway.) Oh, and the king size bed...nice.

Bug, Bean and I hit the road this morning to go to the Cincinnati Children's Museum. Some of the exhibits are very similar to the ones we've seen at COSI, Exploration Place and the Houston Children's Museum...but one very original one was called "The Woods" where there were caves, trees, cargo net tunnels, aquariums, and woodland animal displays. They tore around that place with all the other tourist kids. Good place to be on a rainy morning.

Other sites to see include the EnterTRAINment Junction, the Newport Aquarium and IKEA (never actually been inside a store...hmmm...I may be in the market for some Swedish bunk beds.) Not sure how long we are staying. Sweet Man will be here until the 11th and then he goes to Louisville. But we are here, together for now.