Friday, December 18, 2009


We have had all kinds of concerts this year. Leslie had a choir concert, and I attended a marathon sing-around today. But, the photo being posted to represent all of this is Camille's band concert. The performance was actually a bit of a crack-up. The 6th grade band this year consisted of 1 trumpet, 2 saxophones, 1 clarinet, and 5 drummers. All the drummers played all the time. The bass drummer with particular zeal. And he was standing right behind Camille. All the songs sounded like drums. My favorite then, was "Up on the Housetop" because after the kids all sang "Ho, Ho, Ho," Camille's trumpet would sound loud and clear (no drums on this part) "Who wouldn't go?" right on key, right on time. Good job sis! I'm sure you did great on the rest too. Leslie was fun to watch sing. She enjoys it so much, and she sings from her heart. Caleb, Camille, Miriam and Ethan all sang with their classes today. I enjoyed it all, and Seth was a pretty good sport for staying the whole morning in the lunch room. :)

The next photo is from a few days ago. We had a big snowfall, but it was warm enough for the kids to walk home from school. Jacob came running to say, "Mom, come and see Ethan's new pet!" I was worried. Never know what little boys will make into pets, but this is what it was:

The snowball is about twice the size of his head, and Jake had watched him carry it up the road, slowly eating it. Ewww.

This is where the snowball had to live, if it was going to live in the house. The next morning, I found the bowl of water in the TV room. Snowball pets are easy to dispose of when they die. Even easier than goldfish. :)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Blog Block

Not what you think it is. Not that I can't think of something to say, but one of those times when you have a lump in your throat and you can't. I haven't posted about my father-in-law's heart attack yet, but I need to record a few things so I can move forward.

Shortly after Thanksgiving, my father-in-law had a massive heart attack. The surgeon was able to relieve the blockage in his heart, but Dad had been without oxygen for an undetermined amount of time. He is basically in a coma right now, having sustained damage to some parts of his brain.

His family feels it keenly. There has been much prayer and soul searching, and a kind of endurance mourning. He is not dead, but he is so far from us, that it is painful. A state of limbo where sadness mixes with hope and submission. I wish I were more help. We all do.

I find it hard to carry on with every day life so far. We have socially accepted customs where we mourn if someone dies, but what if you just lose someone's activity and interaction and everything else, except their body? We go back and forth between hope and despair. I watch my sweet mother-in-law, as she sits by his side everyday. Time ticks forward. Christmas is coming. Still the changes we pray for are not yet manifest. His children go to work each day and stop in when they can. The grandchildren pray for him and draw pictures for his room. It is a time to stretch our souls.

I am so grateful for this family that I have married into. I am also grateful for kind words and prayers from extended family and friends. We feel loved as you express sorrow for us, and let us know of your concern and prayers. We love you too. Thank you.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The Elusive Hobo

You may recall that Caleb was a hobo for Halloween this year. When he told me what he wanted to be, my first thought was, "Yay! that will be easy." and my next thought was, "How did he come up with that?" I still don't know. What I do know is he is pretty interested in hobos. He asked me what a hobo was about two weeks ago, and where he could find one. I tried to explain that hobo is an old word, that we don't use much anymore. People who were once considered hobos, would now be called things like: Homeless, Migrant Workers, Alcoholics, Mentally Ill or Vagrant, therefore, we are more politcally correct, or at least more descriptive in our use of language to name what we used to call hobos. My kids don't buy it. They obviously have a mental picture of what a hobo is, and they are on the lookout for a few. Today, we passed the school crossing guard, a gentleman of advanced years, with a portly tummy wearing a hoodie. Pouring forth from the hood was a gray beard that santa would be proud of. My kids promptly pronounced him a hobo and dissolved into giggles. Caleb announced that he had a friend who had seen a real hobo, and he had asked her mom for money. He is not so sure of Santa, but he seems determined that hobos do exist, and he is going to hunt until he is satisfied.

The kids got out of the suburban at the school and blew me kisses. Then Caleb stretched his arms wide, flexed his hands forward and yelled, "Air hug!" Miriam quickly turned around and sent me one too. I love you, fun, zany children!!!