Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Snips and snails and puppy dog tails . . . and sometimes, sentiment

I have been having a bit of trouble with my internet connection, and so have not written as much as I would like of late.
But I had to fight through all the "no service" spots in my house until I found one that would work to write about this.
Today, on the way back from a dentists appointment for the boys in Joplin (where Josiah had a tooth pulled! Yikes!), we took an unusual way home, and were driving past beautiful, sprawling farms.
Yes, I was lusting.
The sun was shinning and we were happy again (Jo wasn't so happy about losing his tooth for a while :).
I asked, "So, if we were going to name our "farm", what would we call it?"
Isaac said "I don't know . . . "
Josiah had a wad of gauze in his mouth and was content to let us discuss this one without him.
"C'mon. What do you think?" I asked again.
After a moment, Isaac said, "Safe and sound. Safe and Sound Farm."
I have never felt so warm and fuzzy inside in all my life!!
"Awwww. That's great, Isaac! I love it!"
"Yeah, it was the name of that road back there," he said.
But I think it is no less great that he would associate safe and sound with our family.
Safe and Sound Family Farm.
I think it has a nice ring to it.

Monday, June 22, 2009

And then there's this . . .

"If the English language made any sense, a catastrophe would be an apostrophe with fur."
~Doug Larson ~

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Greetings from our garden

Yes, we still have a garden, believe it or not.
I say this because sometimes I can not believe there are living, growing plants out there that are beginning to produce edible fare that we haven't killed entirely dead or maimed in some awful way.
We are actually gardening!
And beginning to eat of the fruits, as it were, of our labors.
Let's see, what all is out there? Snap peas and green beans and purple beans and carrots, lettuce, cucumbers, fennel, sage, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, potatoes, summer squash, broccoli, watermelon, honeydew, corn, basil, parsley, mint, chives, blueberries and strawberries . . . I'm sure I'm forgetting something. . .
Well, that's somewhat of a list at any rate.
Daniel loves to walk out to the strawberry patch with me, and look at the berries there.
One day, a ripe one was right there, hanging on the vine by a thread, ruby red and ready to be picked. I plucked it I let Daniel eat it. His eyes got wide. "Berries?" he asked. "Yes. Strawberries," I said. "Berries? Berries? Berries?" he queried again, wanting to make sure the name of the succulent piece of heaven he had just popped into his mouth. "Yes, berries," I laughed. And then it came. "More? More, Mommy? More?" Of course, being two and not understanding the concept of the ripening process, he was not the least bit happy with me when I told him that was all there was for the day, and no, we could not pick and eat the greenish white berries waiting to be kissed by the sun until they blush.
Nope. Went right over his head.
Look at those little green boots, though. Do you just love em? Daniel sure does. I can't get anything else on his feet these days. He has farm in him for sure.
I look at this year in the garden as one big experiment of learning and faith. Kind of a green thumb test, if you will. Do I have one, or not?
So far, not too bad.
The summer days have been long and full here.
Isaac got his first summer job mowing a lawn for some friends. He also got his first bad sunburn today, doing said job. The sun shone all day out of a cloudless blue sky. As he was mowing (he looked so big out there, driving that John Deere), he rode over to Josiah, Daniel and I, where we were watching him from under a tree, and shyly handed me a bunch of yellow flowers he had picked for me from the middle of the field where he was working. "I picked them from the roots," he said, "so you can keep em and plant em if you like."
He's going to be eleven this year. Have I said that.
Yeah, eleven.
Is this possible?
I'm still 25 . . . aren't I?
Eleven, and still bringing his mama flowers. I love it. They are sitting on my table right now, where I can see them, in a jelly jar full of water. They are more beautiful to me than all the roses in the world.
Josiah got a little sun today, too.
We got a pool for the summer birthdays this year, and spent way too much time in it today.
Truth be told, my back is a tad scorched as well.
But the water was so cool, and the boys swam like fish.
Tomorrow, we'll break out the 500 SPF!!!
But tonight, it's the aloe vera.
On the agenda for next week: several trips to the library, picnic at the park, horseback riding, and swimming in the new pool, of course, (thanks MeMe and Gramp!!) with lots and lots of sun block on!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles

What could be better than bubbles?
I remember hours spent as a young girl blowing bubbles in gram's backyard. Or, chasing them into the sunlight, perfect rainbow orbs with in my grasp, then POP! as someone else (usually my mom) blew them across the lawn.
Bubbles are fun.
Bubbles are . . . magic.
This evening, we broke out the bubbles. Daniel squeaked with delight and laughed from deep in his belly as he watched the bubbles, his eyes almost as big as they were. Josiah jumped and danced and jigged this way and that, trying to catch them, then trying to POP! them.
If you look in a bubble, floating in the air, you can see yourself. You can see the sky, and the things around you. They all have this rainbow tint. And your nose looks so big. It will make you laugh. You can see everything as it is, right in that moment, just a little. . . different. Smaller. Then, it floats away.
The boys and I read a poem about bubbles in a children's book of poems we got from the library last week. It's called Plum, by Tony Mitton and it is delightfully illustrated by Mary GrandPre'. There is a poem in it called "Bubble Songs." It goes like this:

If you blow
I will grow
to a trembling ball.

I'm a bubble of breath
in a shinning shawl.

If you lift
I will drift
like a wisp of the air.

Then I'll burst with a gasp
and I'm simply not there.

I am only a bubble,
the ghost of a ball.

If I'm caught
then I'm naught,
I am nothing at all.

I am only a bubble,
a shimmering sphere.

If I land on your hand
I shall soon disappear.

The boys and I love this poem. Especially the line about a bubble being the ghost of a ball.
Crazy, how a little soap and some time together can transform an ordinary afternoon into extraordinary playtime, and a regular old backyard into an enchanted wonderland.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Two years ago today . . .

Daniel was born.
Born in a storm, carried in on the wind.
And boy, don't we know it.
Daniel is a spit-fire, full of life and a perpetual curiosity that fuels his constant motion.
Two years. Where has the time gone?
Life -- it seems to fly by so fast. I can barely find time to sit and write about our days because they are so full, and I am so worn out by the end of them, writing about them seems an insurmountable task. . . .thus my regrettable long silence here.
Two years of laughter, and wonder and love and I'm-gonna-pull-my-hair-out-by-its-roots moments.
Two years of blue eyes, blond curls, tiny fingers searching out my face, feet pattering and pittering all (and I do mean ALL) around the house.
His sweet voice ringing in our ears, his smile lighting up the corners of our souls, his kisses like the breath of God on our faces.
We sang birthday songs all day. Daniel danced in the living room and played outside and generally had no idea that two years ago today, he was breathing in his first breaths of air in this big, wide, new world.
It was just a day to him, although I think he began to understand when he was opening gifts and blowing out candles and eating his chocolate cupcake with sprinkles, surrounded by mom and dad and brothers and Gramp and MeMe and Patty and David and Aunt Li, that it was indeed a special kind of a day.

We showered him with lots of kisses. We taught him how to hold up two fingers to say he is two years old. We ohhhed and ahhhed and squealed when he opened gifts or sang or did just about anything.
Two years. Where does the time go?
I feel like I will blink and two more will be gone, behind me, over. Each day slides into the next and I wish more than anything that I could . . . catch them somehow. Keep them in a bag to pull out later, for remembering.
But when a day is gone, it is.
Our memories, however, are a gift of God's mercy on us, who are never able to get a day back again, but can revisit it in our memories a thousand upon a thousand times.
Like I can remember the stormy night my beautiful third son was born.
Like I will remember this day.