meandering simply

Friday, August 29, 2008

a Friday Foto



Roman 13 months, and having a ball.

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thursday Thirteen

It's been a while since I posted a Thursday 13. Today is Thursday and I think I can think of 13 things that are going on around here.

1) Today the girls went back to school. That was/is exciting.

2) Gordon just got back from Montreal. He was there nearly 20 years ago. He LOVES Montreal and his pictures are beautiful.

3) He brought me back two sets of rosary beads from Notre Dame Cathedral. One set was made in Jerusalem. Now I have three sets; one at the office, one in the car, and the most used one is on my nightstand. He couldn't have brought me anything better.

4) I think more protestants should use rosary beads. They are wonderful at keeping me focused when I pray.

5) For all practical purposes my dragon boat season has ended. It's been a wonderful (though often painful) experience. Lord willing, I'll do it every summer.

6) Beginning Monday, I'll be in a month long (3 times a week @ 5:00am) fitness boot camp. That should provide lots of blogging fodder. :-)

7) In case you've forgotten, 2008 goal focus was physical fitness. I'm doing quite well in the department.

8) It's been cool this week and I'm sad to see summer slipping away.

9) It's been a great summer, but it didn't seem long enough.

10) I had lots of wonderful times this summer, but the highlight was Stephanie and Roman's visit.

11) I play "Where's Roman?" all the time in my head and imagine him tapping his head. I miss him so much. He's on my screen saver, so I see him lots everyday.

12) Tonight to commemorate the cool weather I'm making cream of broccoli soup. Oh that sounds so good.

13) Kids How-To books are the ticket on learning something that baffles me. I've been toying with building a website and been totally overwhelmed,confused, and way out of my league. However today I picked up How-To Build Cool Web Pages by a kid for kids and you know what, I'm getting it.

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a little too much sex (I bet that gets me a few hits)

Often when I'm not near a computer I think of a conversation I had with a friend months ago. I always smile and wish I'd remember the story when I could sit and blog it. Well guess what, I just remembered it and I'm at the computer.

My friend, let's call her Lexie, was talking about sex and how she was too tired for it. To her chagrin, her husband was as virile as ever, or perhaps more so. She said, "The older I get the more I understand Sarah. If I had a Hagar, I'd be tempted to say, 'Have you considered my maid-servant Hagar?'"

If you know the Old Testament story of Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar, surely you can see the humor here. I smile every time I think of her.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

crossing the finish line, lethbridge

This video is just a few seconds long. Just long enough to see our speed. :-)

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Monday, August 25, 2008

cute quote

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning, Satan shudders & say, "Oh shit....she's awake!!!"

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Sunday, August 24, 2008

We Won Gold

Wahine Kei Waka won GOLD today. I'm too tired to gloat but I wanted you to know. Wooooohoooo. That's all the energy I have left. :0)

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Saturday, August 23, 2008

Dragon Boat Festival

This weekend is another dragon boat festival. This picture video is from the Lethbridge Dragon Boat Festival -- our gold medal weekend.

Here's hoping this weekend's festival produces some gold for Wahine Kei Waka.

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Friday, August 22, 2008

Happy Birthday Hannah

Twelve years ago today Hannah Kathleen gushed powerfully into our world. She was a soft, warm, red, chunky bundle of preciousness. Ever since that morning, Hannah has filled our lives with a richness and uniqueness no other child could. Hannah is sensitive, loves animals, is detailed, creative, and has a very developed sense of justice. She has an incredible sense of humor and a zanyness that is unpredictable and refreshing.
She requires comfort. It doesn’t matter how cute she looks, if she’s not comfortable, she’s not wearing it. Her attire of choice is a baggy pair of faded pajama pants and an equally loose t-shirt.

Hannah is a good worker and she’s good with money. She thinks long and hard (painfully long and hard if you’re the one shopping with her) before spending money. Whereas most kids might whittle their money away, Hannah saves for big purchases. She bought her own Nintendo DS and her own games for it (dogs and an aquarium). She bought Bear, the ornery little $200 dog.
When the girls were much younger the most effective method of teaching them about sex and reproduction was purchasing two Teddy Bear hamsters, Reepacheep and Chimpy. With puzzled concentration they watched Reepacheep and Chimpy mate. With awe they watched Chimpy give birth. It was beautiful seeing three little girls get this wonderful education and treat it sacredly.
When the girls were little we had guests up from Mississippi. One night we had a wiener and marshmallow roast over the fire pit in the backyard. An older guests was elated with this little activity. As he hunkered over the fire with his marshmallows, he excitedly exclaimed -- as only a true southerner could -- “Woowee, I’m havin’ myself a good time.” Our family, as we are inclined to do, adopted the phrase.

One summer evening Rachael and Hannah (foolishly) took Reepacheep and Chimpy outside for a picnic. The neighbor kids came over and Rachael and Hannah were soon distracted leaving Reepacheep and Chimpy picnicking alone. They didn’t remember that Reepacheep and Chimpy were outside till 10:30 that night. We searched but didn’t find the little rodents who had given us much joy and many life lessons.
After the mourning subsided we were outside when 7-year-old Hannah said enthusiastically, “Wouldn’t it be funny if Chimpy came back and had Reepacheep on top of her. He’d have on a cowboy hat,” she said as she thrusts wildly, “and be yelling, ‘Woowee, I’m havin’ myself a good time.’”.
Our zany Hannah, how dull our lives would be without her. I’m thankful for this little 12-year-old. She fills our home with joy, thoughtfulness, and tender contemplation.

Happy 12th birthday Boo. We’re proud of you and love you so much.

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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

a darling husband


My darling Gordon is home from Mexico. It is so good to have him back. It was a good experience for both of us. He thoroughly enjoyed his trip. As he told me snippets, I was amused at how fatherly his take on things were. We have so grown up. (Do you realize Gordon and I are too old to join the police force or the military? We're even too old for the Young Adults' Sunday School Class. This may be no surprise to you, but I'm still shocked every time I realize it anew.)

His trip was good for me too. I depend on my good man for so many things. I repeatedly needed to bounce stuff off him and he wasn't around. X-kid is being a smart ass. How do you think I should handle it? I got a kick in the stomach at work and wanted to cry on his shoulder, he wasn't around. The van pulled some funky behaviours, the back gate broke, the toilet plugged. (I got married partially so I'd never have to unplug a toilet again. Yuk!) But my better half wasn't around to depend on. However, more than missing what he could do for me, I just missed him - who he is, his friendship, his love, his support, his hugs and touch.

I was supposed to pick him up around midnight at the church when he returned. Instead I went to the airport to surprise him. I think we both were surprised by our reactions when we saw each other. We ran to each other and hugged like we'd not seen each other in months. It was so good to see him. He had on a goofy black gorilla t-shirt from the San Diego Zoo. He was proud to show me his new Governator (Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger) t-shirt too. I cringed, but thought he's completely lovable with his strange compulsions. (One of Gordon's team-mates says Gordon is the king of dorky t-shirts. Since his Governator t-shirt purchase, I'm inclined to agree.)

Even after three days at home, I still can't wait to hug him when he comes home. On Mondays I see him when he gets home for about two minutes before I leave for dragon boating. He still smells good even after being at work for eight hours. In the boat I got the occasional whiff of his cologne from our hug before I left. I smiled when I got that sniff, just being reminded that he's home, back in my daily life.

It'll wear off soon enough, but right now we're acting like rabbits. We'll be back to acting our age soon, but for now, it's just wildly great to see him everyday.

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Monday, August 18, 2008

soldier with kitten

Pretty sweet.

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The Shack

The Shack The Shack by William P. Young


This book is amazing. I savoured it. I read it slowly. I didn't want it to end. I read it before going to sleep to intentionally go to sleep with thoughts of Papa's (God) love for me.

There are lots of opinions on this book, but I think it's worth noting that this man wrote this book for his children and grandchildren to teach them about the nature of God. It's beautiful and profound.

In the fall when we start having evening bonding time again (we always suspend that in the summer so the girls can have every last ray of sunshine for fun) we're going to read this book together. I can't wait. I think the girls will love it. Gordon and I both did.

~~Comparing Jesus' life on earth to a bird he was holding, Papa said about Jesus, "Although by nature he is fully God, Jesus is fully human and lives as such. While never losing the innate ability to fly, he chooses moment-by-moment to remain grounded. That is why his name in Immanuel, God with us, or God with you, to be more precise".

~~Papa said, "The God who is--the I am who I am--cannot act apart from love!"

~~As Mack told the Trinity about his children, he suddenly felt silly and said, "Here I am telling you about my kids and my friends and about Nan, but you already know everything that I am telling you, don't you? You're acting like it's the first time you heard it." To that they replied, "We have limited ourselves out of respect for you. We are not bringing to mind, as it were, our knowledge of your children. As we are listing to you, it is as if this is the first time we have known about them, and we take great delight in seeing them through your eyes.... Relationships are never about power, and one way to avoid the will to power is to choose to limit oneself--to serve."

~~Papa told Mack, "You're going to find this day a lot easier if you simply accept what is, instead of trying to fit it into your preconceived notions."

~~When Mack asked Papa if he enjoyed punishing, Papa replied, "I don't need to punish people for sin. Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside. It's not my purpose to punish it; it's my joy to cure it."

~~Mack asked why Papa doesn't restrain evil and Papa answered, "We carefully respect your choices, so we work within your systems even while we seek to free you from them."

~~"I will use every choice you make for the ultimate good and the most loving outcome," Papa said.

~~Papa told Mack, "The real underlying flaw in your life is that you don't think that I am good. If you knew I was good and that everything-the means, the ends, and all the processes of individual live-is all covered by my goodness, then while you might not always understand what I am doing, you would trust me.... Trust is the fruit of a relationship in which you know you are loved. Because you do not know that I love you, you cannot trust me..... For now I just want you to be with me and discover that our relationship is not about performance or you having to please me. I'm not a bully, not some self-centered demanding little deity insisting on my own way. I am good, and I desire only what is best for you. You cannot find that through guilt or condemnation or coercion, only throught a relationship of love. And I do love you." Mack said he couldn't imagine any final outcome to justify the mess in the world (or more specifically his daughter's murder) and Papa replied, "We're not justifying it. We are redeeming it."

~~Talking about friendship with Jesus, Mack said he didn't know how to submit to friendship. Jesus said, "Let me show you. Just keep giving me the little bit you have, and together we'll watch it grow."

~~The Holy Spirit told Mack, "You will learn to hear my thought in yours."

~~Regarding rules Sarayu (the Holy Spirit) said, "Religiou is about having the right answers, and some of their answers are right. But I am about the process that takes you to the living answer and once you get to him, he will change you from the inside."

~~When Mack asked Sarayu if he'd see her again, she replied, "Of course. You might see me in a piece of art, or music, or silence, or through people, or in Creation, or in your joy and sorrow. My ability to communicate is limitless, living and transforming, and it will always be tuned to Papa's goodness and love. And you will hear and see me in the Bible in fresh ways. Just don't look for rules and principles; look for relationship-a way of coming to be with us."

~~Jesus told Mack, "I don't want to be first amoung a list of values; I want to be at the center of everything. When I live in you, then together we can live through everything that happens to you. Rather than a pyramid, I want to be the center of a mobile, where everything in your life-your friends, family, occupation, thoughts, activities- is connected to me but moves with the wind, in and out and back and forth, in an incredible dance of being."
View all my reviews.

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Sunday, August 17, 2008

bill gaither

My apologies for reporting a lark. I am relieved to now report that the Bill Gaither Walmart Homecoming report isn't true. That would be a horrible indictment on the church of North America. I'm very relieved.

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Friday, August 15, 2008

zonkee?



Isn't this little hybrid cute? It looks like a donkey in striped tights, eh?

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Romie Boy



I sure miss this little guy.

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new dillies

If you're an observant soul you'll see I've added a "subscribe to my blog" dilly on the sidebar of this page. This is for you masses who've asked me to get a subscribe-to dilly so you won't have to put yourself out by going to my site when I've not posted anything new. I feel very humanitarian doing this for you. So please subscribe. I think this subscribe-to dilly is the equivalent of Junior High votes for most popular. Please don't make me beg for "votes". Junior High was traumatic enough.

You'll also notice I've added advertisement. It's how I plan to become wealthy and retire early. If I'm wealthy, I'll be better equipped to "reward" those who subscribed to this blog. Please check out my advertisers. (The advertisers are cramping my style at this juncture. Why couldn't I get really cool advertisers? I have no choice in the matter. Gee I hope they don't read that.)

My hubby is visiting San Diego Zoo as we speak. He'll be on a plane home tomorrow. It will be nice to have a husband in the house again.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

bc bears

You'll probably have to click on the picture to make it bigger, more readable.

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life lessons, for Tonya

I know Tonya likes these sort of things, so this is for you Girl.

Life lessons

A penny saved is obviously the result of a government oversight.

The older you get, the tougher it is to lose weight, because by then your body and your fat have gotten to be really good friends.

The easiest way to find something lost around the house is to buy a new replacement for it.

He who hesitates is probably doing the right thing.

If you think there is some good in everybody, you obviously haven't met 'everybody'.

The sole purpose of a child's middle name is so that he can tell when he's 'really' in trouble.

Aging: Eventually you will reach a point when you stop lying about your age and start bragging about it.

The older we get, the fewer things seem worth waiting in line for.

Some people try to turn back their life's odometers. Not me, I want people to know 'why' I look this way. I've traveled a long, long way and some of the roads weren't paved.

When you are dissatisfied and would like to go back to youth, think of Algebra.

Ah, being young is beautiful, but being old is comfortable.

Long ago when men cursed and beat the ground with sticks, it was called witchcraft. Today, it's called golf.

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Saturday, August 9, 2008

octopus

Gordon is the one on the left, if you can't tell.
Kids on the street in Mexico.

Gordon is working hard but having a good time. Today was a rest day. They had a nice dinner and he ordered fried octopus. I don't share Gordon's need to eat like the locals.

There is a book by Frank Schaeffer called Portofino. It's one of my all time favorites. Don't rush out and buy it because I think only someone who grew up in a fundamentalist home could love it like I did. Stacie and I both absolutely loved it and laughed so hard we couldn't talk. I read some pieces to the girls and even they laughed.

Anyway in Portofino the young boy Calvin (named after John Calvin) caught an octopus. The chef at the hotel cooked the octopus and made a huge deal out of Calvin's catch. Calvin was pressured into eating it as was his fundamentalist Bible-teaching dad. The mother feigned allergies to seafood or something like that, but commented on how slighted she was because "there's nothing like fresh seafood." In reality she knew she couldn't stomach octopus.

The mother always prayed before supper. She insisted on long prayers that called attention to them. This was part of being "light" in the darkness around them. According to her, the unregenerate would see their long prayers, feel convicted of their sins, and turn to God who had preordained that he/she would come to him. Wherever the family went, they looked weird and wacky, mostly because the mother was terribly determined to be "set-apart."

After their standard long and drawn out prayer Dad and Calvin hesitantly began to eat. As they ate, the chef, so very pleased with Calvin's catch and the meal he'd prepared, kept bringing octopus insisting they enjoy their fill. Calvin and his dad found octopus sickening but didn't have the heart to tell the chef. They willed themselves to swallow, Calvin to avoid offending the chef, Dad in effort to commend Calvin for his mighty catch. Calvin started feeling sick but squelched his body's signals and kept eating to avoid offending the chef. The dad too found octopus revolting. In silence they gnawed on the octopus that seemed to grow tougher and bigger as they chewed. As the chef brought more octopus, Calvin could stand no more. He projectile vomited across the table. As he's vomiting, the Bible-thumping dad jumped up to avoid the flying vomit and yelled, "Damn that octopus."

It was an hilarious scene and one that still makes me laugh out loud to recall.

When I learned that Gordon had octopus for supper, my first thought was, "Damn that octopus."

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living on faith

Many moons ago I spent a summer travelling in the US with a bunch of friends. One of these friends had a friend who wanted to come with us. The trouble with this plan was that this fellow, let's call him Ted, had no money. Travelling requires money, pure and simple.

I was flabbergasted that someone would do this and asked how he was going to pull this off. He said: "I'm living on faith." (Since then, to me that expression yells, "I'm a bonafide flake.") Touched, I rolled my eyes and wondered who's faith he was going to live off.

Ted figured a few things out early in our travels. He sat across from me salivating. He stared at my food and licked his lips just like my dog Lucy does when she's watching someone eat. I handle Lucy's begging eyes better than Ted's.

After a couple meals someone who didn't know Ted's financial situation said "Hey Ted, aren't you going to eat?" Ted pulled his eyes away from my burger long enough to reply, "I don't have money. I'm living on faith, Man." Perhaps you can imagine the comfortable vibes we enjoyed as we chowed down.

I took a bite and saw Ted open and close his mouth just as I put the burger in my mouth. As I chewed he licked his lips. Again, just like Lucy.

Frustrated, (and feeling manipulated), but wanting to eat guilt-free, I went and bought Ted a burger and fries. Conveniently, he chose to sit across from me at restaurants the remainder of our journey. I was delighted to part company in West Virginia.

A couple days ago, Rachael was eating ice cream. I was sitting across the table from her desperately wanting to taste her delicacy. I started imitating Lucy. I licked my lips and stared as she took each bite. Having heard the story of Ted, she snidely said, "You living on faith?"

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Gordon is in Mexico

As I said earlier, my good man Gordon is in Mexico. He is helping build an orphanage. For a few years he and I have hoped for a time when we, as a family, could go to Mexico for missions. This was the year we were going to do it. Late last year someone counselled us not to do it. "It's 120 degrees where we're going and it would make Deborah terribly ill." We took the counsel and decided only Gordon would go. It's been 95-105 degrees. Hot, yes, but certainly not 120.


It's all worked out well. Gordon is working really really hard and hearing him talk about the hard work makes me really happy I'm here. :-) I'm glad Gordon has this time. He's been gone nearly a week and still has a week to go. But he is having a good time. "It's hard but it's good," he says. We communicate by email and both of us are wishing we'd had the email outlet when we were in our lightning-fast-long-distance courtship. We would have known each other so much better when we got married had we had email. Then too, we may not have married at all had we known each other.

I miss him a lot. He is a wonderful person. A much better man than I deserve. I'm thankful, really really, I am very grateful. I'm hoping he'll have time to read this and see some pictures taken while he's been away. I know he's missing the family, especially the girls.

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Friday, August 8, 2008

photos

Roman has some aunts that really love him. Here's one. I love their blue eyes.
Tired and precious.
After taking Deborah to camp we stopped at a canola field. Hannah, Rachael, and Romie Boy are sweet against the yellow flowers.
Roman really got into this game. 1,2,3,jump. He loved it.

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Little Feet



Aren't these feet precious? Photos have been added below. Scroll down and see some cute ones.

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Zen of Sarcasm

~ Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me either. Just pretty much leave me alone.

~ It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbor's newspaper, that's the time to do it.

~ Always remember that you're unique. Just like everyone else.

~ Never test the depth of the water with both feet.

~ If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments.

~ Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

~ Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

~ Some days you're the bug; some days you're the windshield.

~ Everyone seems normal until you get to know them.

~ The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket.

~ There are two theories to arguing with women. Neither one works.

~ Generally speaking, you aren't learning much when your lips are moving.

~ Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

~ Never miss a good chance to shut up.

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a burden of royalty

Visiting with Stephanie, seeing her expressions, and hearing her talk, I was reminded the other night of an incident when she was around 10-11, maybe as young as 8-9.

She and her cousin Amy were playing like they were married to Prince William and Harry (Prince Charles and Lady Diana's royal boys). This was a pretty common game with them. They would put on Mimi's silk gowns, pretending they were royal evening gowns. This particular time, Amy left to go play in the car for a while. She took not only her baby, but Stephanie and Prince William's baby too. After seeing them off, Stephanie came back in the house and pretending to be stricken with fear, she said, "Lord, I hope the paparazzi don't get 'em."

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Visitor #2, Romie Boy

Let me tell you about Roman.

Grandmas everywhere think their grandchildren are the cutest. Those poor grandmas haven't met my Roman for if they had, they'd know their folly. My grandson is definitely the cutest, the sweetest, the smartest, cuddliest, etc, etc, etc. (Disclaimer: Everything I just said is in jest and only intended to communicate how charmed I am by Roman. I know your grandchildren are wonderfully amazing too.)

Roman wasn't quite sure what to think of me at the airport. He let me hold him but he stared at me like, "I'm watching you. Don't do anything you'll regret." Mostly he was fine with me if his mommy was close by.

For the first couple days he was Paka's boy. Paka is Gordon. Without his daddy, he seemed to be in need of Gordon's masculine attention. Deborah did that once on a trip to Colorado. She kept pretty close to my nephew Jeffrey. After a couple days of this, I happened to notice that of all the men in the room, Jeff most resembled her dad. Wanting to be near Jeff seemed to be a way of staying connected to Gordon. We think that's why Roman liked Gordon so much. Gordon loved Roman back. He carried him around, spoke soothing words, played with him. Roman and Gordon bonded well. Then Gordon left for Mexico, but that's a different story that I'll tell later.

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Not trying to brag (it comes naturally) Roman loves his Beppie. We have so much fun. We read and I give him baths and he loves me for it. He's let me put him to bed three nights and they were all cry-free nights. Beppie has the touch.
I told Roman on the second day that a good education is expensive and it's never too early to work on the college scholarship. He agreed and we went to work. I taught him to pat his head when asked, "Where's Roman?" Being smart, original, and slightly bent toward non-conforming, he insisted it was more clever to point instead of pat. I say, "Where's Roman" and he lifts his index finger to his head and taps it gently. Sometimes when a few minutes pass without him getting adequate attention and praise, he looks at me and taps his head with his pointer. I go berserk with praise and he taps harder and harder like he's yelling, "Here I am. Here I am." Pure charm.


I'm prone to say something silly like "that college scholarship is in the bag." Stephanie asked if they give scholarships to everyone who knows who they are. I responded, "I bet they don't give them to anyone who doesn't know who they are."

Roman still likes the "where's Roman?" game, but there are other things to learn to get the really good scholarships. Anatomy is important. He's not as competent at anatomy yet, but sometimes when I ask him where his nose is, he'll shove a finger in a nostril.

Basic zoology is critical as well. This is where the wooden cow on my kitchen shelf comes in handy. "Roman where's the cow?" To that interrogative (Roman's word, not mine) sentence, he turns his big blue eyes to the cow and I praise, "There's the cow."


I've tried to get him to say Beppie, moo, woof woof, meow and things like that. Roman is a man of few words though. The strong silent type some might say. Instead of a lot of gabbing, he prefers mathematics and simple physics. We read the story of Daniel in the Lions' Den and count the lions (there were four if Roman's Bible is truly inspired) and discuss the mechanics of a den and the methods God may have used to keep the hungry lions from eating Daniel. Did they suddenly feel very full, too stuffed to eat Daniel?, were their mouths miraculously kept closed, maybe their senses were discombobulated. Roman and I weren't able to extrapolate a simple explanation. We decided to leave it at "1,2,3,4 lions sit by Daniel. 1,2,3,4 lions don't eat Daniel." Amazingly Roman had the faith to believe it without a scientific explanation.

He's very very clever.

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Visitor 1, Stephanie


As some of you know, I have a couple visitors this week: Stephanie and Roman are here and both are charming my socks off.

Stephanie is beautiful, funny, and loving. Yesterday she took Rachael and Hannah to West Edmonton Mall for fun and shopping. The day before that she took Deborah to the mall and bought her two blouses and a pair of shoes. Deborah was so blessed. When one of my kids is blessed (Deborah), I am blessed. When one of my kids is a blessing (Stephanie), I am blessed. Last night after I went to bed, Stephanie, Rachael and Hannah stayed up and played SCRABBLE and made cookies. (Deborah is at camp). I am so happy they have this time.

Speaking of blessings, the biggest blessing is seeing Stephanie at mothering. She is a wonderfully patient, loving, nurturing, committed mommy and little Roman adores her.

Today I read this question: If you could get a message across to a large group of people, what would your message be? I knew immediately what my message would be. First I would say, Stay married. Divorce isn't the answer. Secondly I'd say to moms, Stay home with your babies, nurturing them and being their everything.

Watching Stephanie, I'm so glad, so thankful with every cell in me that Stephanie is that kind of mommy. I am so so proud of her and John Mark for their parenting.

I've enjoyed Stephanie this week. I learn new stuff about her all the time. She makes me laugh, makes me smile, makes me wonder, makes me glad. I'd love to live in the same town and be closer to her, sowing good things into her life, being available to be "Mom" up close and personal day in and day out.

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