Wednesday, November 26, 2008

just what the doctor ordered

Yesterday I took a little trip over to the next town to pick up my four year old niece/goddaughter to spend a little pre-holiday time with her. Bethany spent the night with BFF so Madison had to sleep in her room alone. Not a happy thing. Pretty sure she sleeps with her momma every night because we kind of have this thing every time she's over. In the midst of the negotiations about a good night's sleep I offered to let Zoe sleep with her... Her answer, "I need a HU MAN." She didn't follow it with... stu pid, but I am pretty sure I heard it:)

She cracks me up. That's what I needed this week. A little perspective.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Daniel Bennett Craddock 11/29/99

Yesterday was a yucky day. For those of you who saw me in choir, I apologize:) That silly song director of ours picked out a whole bunch of thankfulness songs this week. Must have been a theme or something. After blubbering thru the first song service and Sunday school (which, by the way was about family conflict... whose idea was THAT??? huh?) I thought for sure that I had it together for the second service. Too bad it was the same songs. darn.

Apparently yesterday was my official day for the breakdown. Happens every year about this time. And usually its caused by some stupid music. For the record, Daniel's birthday is Saturday. He is nine years old this year. In heaven. I hope God remembers to give him a party. Maybe a soccer theme. or maybe he likes basketball. or music, like his brother and sister. One of the many things that I didn't get a chance to find out.

After making an idiot of myself in church, I came home took my obligatory Sunday afternoon nap, followed by the equally obligatory Sunday afternoon migraine (happens every time I take a nap... why, oh why do I do that?) While David and Bethany went to church Sunday night I climbed up into the attic to pull out Daniel's box. All of my kids have one, but his is pitifully small. Hospital bands, pictures, cards, scrubs with footprints. You know the kind. Only these scrubs have no footprints. There wasn't time for that in his delivery room. Out came the video. The only proof I have that I held him in my arms. David won't watch it, but the kids and I do every year around his birthday. Brian was 10 and Bethany was 6 when he was born. My biggest regret was sheltering them from his death. They never saw their brother in person or held his hand. I sure wish I could take that back. I meant well at the time, although when I see my precious baby girl in the video just before his birth... her kindergarten graduation, her birthday... when I see her in context of her age all those years ago, I understand why I made that decision at that time.

Anyway, after all of the tears and mementos are put back in the box, after the video and the pain has been revisited, after the journal has been read and the shock that this really happened to ME and not someone else wears off I always come back to the same place... thank you God. He is good, all the time. Sounds cold, I am sure to those who have not walked in my shoes but I am so thankful that God took him that day. I am thankful that he did not suffer. When I see families suffering with the severely handicapped child, I am thankful that God was merciful. I am thankful that God did not allow me to take him home, for months even, and then take him with no warning. To those who have suffered THESE things, God somehow gives them special grace and I am sure that they are thankful for what THEY consider unthinkable... if they choose to be.

I am also thankful for the people that allowed themselves to be used by God to minister. Interestingly enough, those closest to me were not necessarily the ones who came thru in my time of need. My sister was recovering from her delivery of her own son. With a 16 month old on the side, she had precious little time to spend at my bedside... not to mention her desire to not add to my pain with her own newborn. Caleb is my measuring stick to this day. Sometimes when I look at him, I mourn for HIS loss. He doesn't even know that his very best friend in the world is in heaven waiting to play Lego's and show him his bionicle creations. He doesn't realize that part of him is missing, much as I would be without his mother. In any case, she was busy and my mother in law was caring for my other two rugrats, so she was a no show. Pretty much everyone else, with a couple of notable exceptions was MIA during this time of need. How does that happen? I guess we just get busy with our lives and think that someone else will meet that persons needs. Note to self: show up for those you love; don't expect someone else to do it.

Nevertheless, God used people I barely knew to meet these needs which meant so much to me mostly because I have a very hard time relating to people outside of my comfort zone. Belinda visited me several times and brought me flowers. Tina worked in the building next door and would regularly come by after work just to sit down, put up her feet and chat. I was so lonely and isolated in that hospital for those months and her visits gave me a feeling of normalcy. Katie came and decorated my room as the holidays approached and I was blue for missing it. Kris sent cards that were a life line. And the person that stands out the most to me is Donna. She was a lady that I went to church with at the time and scarcely knew, but she happened to be visiting the morning that I delivered. The hospital used a disposable camera that morning to take the pictures that would be my only connection to him in the years to come. Donna took the time to take the camera to Walgreens for me and have them one-hour developed so that I could have them as soon as possible. She will probably never know how much that meant to me. Every year at this time I find myself praying for these women, wherever they are. God bless them today. Send someone to meet THEIR needs whatever they may be.

Sorry this post is long and rambling. Feeling a little wrung out from this weekend...

Friday, November 21, 2008

Grilling Goodness... late hubby roast

1. Sitting in front of the TV, what’s on the screen? not sure because hubby is asleep, but it probably has a "star" in it. star wars, star trek, star gate, you get the idea.
2. You’re out to eat; what kind of dressing does he get on his salad? changes every time
3. What’s one food he doesn’t like? can't think of one thing.
4. What is his favorite type of sandwich? barbeque "smush meat"... don't ask.
5. What would this person eat everyday if he could? chinese... food, not people.
6. What is his favorite cereal? some healthy concoction that I found one time about 10 years ago and have never found again and have heard about every time he has been with me to the grocery store ever since.
7. What would he never wear? sandals. when Brian was a baby I had to get his mom to buy them for our son, just so he would have to let me let Brian wear them:)

8. What is his favorite sports team? not into sports, thank goodness.

Bah Humbug... part 2

ps. Casting Crowns Christmas CD is aMAZing... run out and buy a copy, because borrowing mine to burn it on your computer would be WRONG.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bah Humbug.

Okay. So I have given in completely to the whole Christmas music moratorium that I put on myself every year at this time. I admit it... I am hopelessly addicted to Christmas music. can't wait til after Thanksgiving, no matter how hard I try. I am resisting the urge to drag out the tree, but the fact that we are having Thanksgiving at home has been my staying power. I don't really want to carve Tom Turkey in the shadow of a perfectly decorated tree.

I guess I was warped as a child (weren't we all?) because we were not allowed to set up the Christmas tree until the 10th of December, every year. Not because we had a real tree that needed to last til the 25th, mind you. No... we had the same sad little charlie brownish artificial number EVERY stinkin year. My mother probably grew up in the era of Christmas Eve decorating and thought that she was being very generous but I was chomping at the bit every Christmas.

When David and I got married we tried the whole "real" tree thing. Never had it as a kid, so naturally it seemed more desirable. One year we pulled a National Lampoon episode. Wish someone would have been nearby taking subversive video. I could have made a fortune.

We picked out the most gorgeous tree at the tree farm. Of course your perspective of tree size is somewhat off in a huge field full of lush greenery so the tree was considerably larger than the living room of our apartment. The tree was transported in its branch confining contraption which when clipped unfurled the most amazing display of plumage. Lamps went flying, cat scrambled upstairs. I swear a squirrel shot out of the bottom and I was picking evergreen out of the piano keys six months later. Okay, maybe I exaggerate... but not by much. David ended up cutting several feet of of the bottom of it to allow it to stand without having to bow down. I am not kidding about that.

A couple of years later, when the trauma had worn off we tried again. This time the spider crop came in just after the sap had finished dripping all over the presents and ornaments so that we had trapped baby spiders in the amber adorning the gifts to present to our loved ones. EWWW!

Maybe if you lived in a place that has real snow you can have a real tree, but it's not really practical in the south. So we opted for the artificial kind, without the Charlie Brown attitude. The good news is that you can put it up as early as you want. THAT'S what I am about:) But, I really should wait another week or so. fine.

Mom just realized that sis is going to be gone for Thanksgiving this year. Of course she has been bragging about it for months, but whatever. Since Mom ate with her last year, she just assumed that that was where she would be this year. Then I reminded her that Diane would be kicking up her heals with the Rockettes this year; you know Mom, Macy's day parade and all that... awkward silence... cue crickets... humdedum... how bout those Bears?? Yea, I could have just jumped in with an invitation but I figured that I was already toast for not providing a preemptive invite, so I might as well not. Oh poop. Sometimes the holidays really suck. Sorry guys, I mean they "inhale sharply" as hubby says.

somebody shoot me.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Pop goes the weasel, and assorted insects

Did you know that, hypothetically speaking, if your three yorkie babies were infested with fleas and you were to chase said hypothetical fleas around said furry bellies until you land one on your thumb nail and then quickly roll your other thumb nail over their fat, nasty little brown creepiness they actually pop. It's the only way that I can be sure that they are dead without actually touching them. I least I can't feel myself touching them. In any case, its GROSS. Why, oh why, am I fighting a flea epidemic in NOVEMBER. I mean really... Thanksgiving is next week, for pete's sake. (Not sure who Pete is, or why we should consider his sake but, whatever) The dog next door is a pitiful example of pet ownership. He is a sad, sorry, scruffy big dog who apparently is inviting the resident flea population to come to his place and my cutie pies keep getting too close and picking up these disease ridden parasites. Last weekend I spent somewhere in the neighborhood of $50 on all kinds of sprays and shampoos and drops and gadgets to make them go away.

Yikes... I could have gone to Red Lobster. In the mean time, I'm praying for cold enough nights to kill off the little buggers.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Grilling more Goodness

1. What's the worst thing you've ever sent through the washing machine/dryer?
Thought about putting a yorkie in there on delicate... just kidding (a little). No really, probably the worst would be a cell phone. Course I didn't do that; it was the brilliant college student who knows it all.
2. Do you do any of your Christmas shopping online? no can do... kids can read.
3. What are you looking forward to this Thanksgiving? giblet gravy, time with kids, giblet gravy, pie, giblet gravy, getting out the Christmas decorations, giblet gravy, legally being allowed to listen to Christmas music. oh... and mashed potatoes with giblet gravy.
4. What did you do before you had children that you miss doing now that you have children? getting Christmas presents
5. Do you have a fireplace? (Do you use it?) Two; use the fake one, don't use the gas one. too hot and costs too much to run.
6. Do medical shows showing surgeries and blood freak you out? Does House count, cause THAT one doesn't freak me out.
7. How long have you lived where you live? about 11 months.
8. What is one of your favorite seasonal items? yes.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Taco night

This past weekend was go-to-Sams-and-spend-your-life's-savings Day. New tires for the car... last oil change the people at Walmart made me sign off that my tires were a health hazard. oops. $400 yikes. and that was before the groceries and the kid retreat sent me to making a withdrawal from the 401K. Just kidding. I am excited because that account has finally broke $10K. woohoo! retirement in 40 or 50 years:) But only if the blessed winds of change don't bleed me dry.

Good news is that we should be able to live off of this pantry shelf until after the new year begins. Of course I won't be going out to eat again until then, but whatever. Thanksgiving is pretty much ready to go... except the Turkey and other perishables. But we have chicken broth out the wazoo:) bring on the holidays. I am SO itching to get out the Christmas decor, but I WILL wait.

Close family member is getting to go to NYC for Thanksgiving. She will be standing out in front of FAO Swartz watching the Macy's day parade and I will be sitting at my table disappointing the woman who gave life to me. stink. I was thinking that if I fast for these last couple of days before she leaves that I could squeeze into her suitcase. She would be SO surprised. Gonna have to shop for a pair of depends... it's a long drive.

Speaking of fasting... those tacos smell yummy; think I'll go see what Little Debbie made for dessert.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Where can I get one of these??

Kid retreat = mom needs a vacation

Much complaining about my lack of communication; long, stupid story. I actually tried to blog about it last week, but I was boring MYSELF to tears. moving on...

This past weekend I had about 20 tenth grade girls and their chaperons over for the weekend. Kids had big youth activity at the church house and we opened our home to be the sleep over station. Whew! talk about tired. While discussing sleeping arrangements and snack options, Bethany issued the supreme challenge. She said something to the tune of, "you'll never beat Ms. Kathy... she had pizza rolls and egg rolls and blah blah blah." Have no idea what else the Kathy person was serving that impressed these kids so much because at that point my mind was glazed over with the "you'll never beat Ms. Kathy". She says that she did it on purpose. whatever.

Now I don't generally consider myself overly competitive. Okay, maybe a little; but you just can't say a thing like that and not expect a reaction. End result was WAY too much money, but hey, I kicked some serious booty (and I HATE that word). Kids came home on Friday night at about 10:30 to the most amazing platter of layer after layer of nachos and rotel. And we all know that rotel is a slam dunk. Fridge was packed with cokes (southern term for all things carbonated), bottled water, and juice. Next afternoon was snow cones and smoothies for afternoon refreshment. In all fairness, flavored syrup and shaved ice is really no big deal, but when you put them together in a little cup... ambrosia. That night it was meat and cheese trays, plus a plethora of chex mix, goldfish, cookies, etc. Take THAT, Ms. Kathy:)

Add to that a perfectly clean house with candles burning and the whole bit... mom was EXHAUSTED. But, they all say that I rock, which is a good thing... I think.

Friday, November 7, 2008

grilling more goodness

1. What is one of your 'must see' tv shows?
Okay, lest I look like my brain has turned to mush because of that blessed DVR I will just mention my favorite ONE show. Definately Gilmore Girls. It's not on any more, but I own EVERY season. Been watching them again lately, hence the quotes which only die hard Gilmore fans will catch. Guess the whole mother/daughter angst between Lorelai and Emily and the depth of the relationship between Lorelai and Rory makes me feel like less of a freak. And the quick wit CRACKS ME UP:)
2. Do you have a facebook page? Yup... mostly in an effort to be a good mom and keep tabs on my kids. Definately don't want to be the mom who didn't see THAT coming.
3. How old were you when you got married? 19... nuf said.
4. What is one bad habit that you need to break? I really wish that I could lay off of the Dr. Pepper.
5. What is your favorite cold-weather activity? the hot tub at Diane's house.
6. At church, do you always sit in the same area? choir loft... alto side. every time I sit with the sopranos I get caught.
7. What do you like best about blogging? expressing myself without someone sassing me.
8. What's the last funny thing you remember hearing from a child? "how much does it pay?"