Saturday, February 27, 2010

Remembering Papa.

His service is today. Now that he is gone the things that were so undeniably him stand out like fire on a cold night. His happy expression whenever he would see the boys. The way he would give them high fives instead of hugs because boys give high fives. His perfect popcorn. His perfect coffee. His perfect tea. His perfect prime rib. He perfected these things, enjoyed making them, and loved to share them. He could fix anything. In the summer he always had vegetables and flowers in his yard, cutting fresh bouquets for Grammie to have on her counter every other day or so.
The day he died his glasses were sitting on the table next to his chair in the living room. I sat in his chair biting my lip, looking at those lonely frames that I had never before seen anywhere but on his face.
It's strange to be in his house and not see him come walking down the hall, swinging his arms. Strange to eat dinner and him not be sitting at the head of the table. Grammie suddenly seems so solitary, almost lost.
It will be good to be with family today, remembering and saying goodbye to him. He was generous, gentle, and intuitive. He is missed.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Icy Night Filled With Dreams.

We took the boys over to Patty and Shaun's last night with their pj's so we could go to dinner and Brad Paisley's concert. I got all dressed up because I love to do that: extra jewelry, little bit more make-up (I think I'm splurging if I use eyeshadow), a satiny blouse way too summery to be wearing when it snowed two feet that morning, and my favorite jeans and boots. Daelynn had given me this fabulous brown coat a couple of years ago that is perfect for anything a little fancy, and then I transferred just what I needed--my license, two bucks, lip liner, lip stick, and gloss, which I never end up using again after putting it on before we go to the babysitters but at least I look good for grandma and grandpa--in a tiny little black purse used only for occasions such as these.
We decided at the last minute to go to The Stone House Cafe instead of sushi and I am glad we did. I ordered the appetizer bowl of steam clams in a white wine sauce with garlic and chives and onions and tomatoes, garlic bread, and an apple spinach salad with blue cheese and a sweet vinaigrette. I wasn't sure if I was going to be happy with what I ordered when I ordered it but it was perfect. Oh and red wine. Joey had a couple of clams and we talked about how Papa had first introduced us them (he passed away last week). Things like that keep popping up everywhere now that he's gone.
We talked about our own bucket lists of things we would like to accomplish before we go--traveling, and lots of it--Costa Rica, Chile, Switzerland, Japan, Italy, Ireland, Canada and Hawaii were just a few we talked about. Joey wants to spend time snowboarding in another country. I want to get certified in Yogafit. Watch and help our boys develop their talents. Eventually finding something I want to do for work (hair?). Where Joey wants to go with his career.
I love to hear him talk as I get so much insight into what drives him, what he wants. When it was my turn to talk about my bucket list, I had a couple of things, which is good, but most of all I am excited to see Joey succeed as well as my boys. I feel a little Leave it to Beaver saying that but that's the feeling I had sitting at that table.
The concert was great, I love Brad Paisley's songs. They are hilarious. And his love songs are sweet. My eyes got teary a couple of times, thinking of Papa when Paisley sang "What I Believe" and "Waiting on a Woman"--loss is so sad, and yet there is a sweetness in that feeling because it is full of love.
Joey held my hand or had his hand on my leg the whole time, which made the night for me. I like affection.
We left after the fake out ending they always do to beat the crowds. We drove back to Shaun and Patty's on the icy streets, the sky dark and the snow reflecting of the headlights. The truck was warm from the heater, making me sleepy.
The boys were sleeping when we went into the the bedroom to pick them up, their little breaths barely able to be heard except maybe by their mom, who could probably pick out those delicate breathing noises anywhere. I planted a kiss on Noah's warm head as I lifted him out of the crib, an automatic reaction like magnets attracting whenever I pick him up. Then we loaded up our life in the truck and drove home.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

That's it. I will write, even though I don't have a theme or a plan-just a sentence here or there that comes to me. Thank you Emery if you are reading this for reminding me I can write about what is going on; that that is what is interesting and touching.
What is going on is GROWTH, hallelujah. I have a hard time writing about it because it all seems so cheesy and dumb. Ha. One of the things I am growing in is my own security as a person and I can't tell you how many times I have started a post and then held my finger on the 'delete' button thinking, "no one wants to read this sunshine bullshit." But when the sun shines, o, let it shine my friends.
I am learning so many things--about the part I have played in the hard times in my marriage. I am soooooo good at blaming Joey--and yes, he has also given me permission to write whatever I want (because he isn't dealing with security issues, at least when it comes to my writing about our relationship).
I am learning I never learned how to respect men. I thought I had been respecting Joey, loving him so darn sacrificially and making both our lives miserable in the process. I am learning when I say "I love you," to Joey I think it's on the same level of him casually saying ''Nice hair," or even a couple of steps lower. No wonder I always felt this ache after I said it to him, not only because he didn't say it back, or if he did it was dry and perfunctory, but because he didn't seem to need to hear it. I might as well have been saying, "Nice shoes."
I am learning to love my husband in a way that touches him. And when I see it working, I want to weep it makes me so happy.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Today we got up and I dropped the boys off at Ampa's so I could go to kickboxing. Afterward we went next store to Grammie and Papa's. When I opened the door, the house was clean and warm like always, but there was no bright "Hello!" or "Who's there!". It was quiet, like no one was home.
We walked in and Grammie was at the counter with an uneaten bowl of oatmeal and a pink drink. When she saw Ethan she said, "Gimmie a big hug. I need a hug." She stretched out her arms and Ethan obliged.
Papa was in the bedroom. He's too weak now to get up, having decided on Thursday he's done; no more food, no more water, no more pills.
I saw him on Wednesday, in his bathrobe, sitting in the blue rocker. He looked thin, but good. Smiling, talking, engaging. And then today, three days later, he looked very much near death. His cheeks were sunken in and his eyes were watery and opaque when we went in to talk to him.
Under his white sheet he told Ethan he loved him, his big knuckley hand stretching out to touch his face. He told him he was a good boy and that he had a good brother. Ethan agreed. He told Papa he hoped he feel better soon.
On the way out I was teary and Ethan told me, "Don't be sad! Why are you sad?"
We've told him Papa has cancer, which I think he thinks means your skin falls off (Papa has very thin skin), and I even said one day a couple weeks back that Papa is going to die soon, to which Ethan said, "Why? "like when he wants something really bad and I say no.
It's a season, death, and it's Papa's time. He's been a good Papa, a good friend. Especially to Ethan. I am not looking forward to telling him when he passes, not at all.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


Oh this morning! I hate you.
This is a morning when I definitely don't want any more kids or dogs. Demanding, snot nose, scratchy paws, mess making creatures. All four of them.
The pups are outside now, Ethan is playing contently with his trains, and Noah is watching him with an occasional coo, so it really isn't all that bad now, but it was.
I don't know how single moms or dads do it.
Yesterday about did me in--from grandma's to kickboxing to grandma's to Costco (on a Saturday morning no less) to home to lunch to imaginary naps to Red Lobster for an anniversary lunch to home to Round Table pizza for Ethan's birthday party. Mix all that in with a hot dog and soda at Costco, the Seaside Trio at Red Lobster, and soda and pizza for dinner. Want to puke yet? Yeah. Me too. So this morning I am toying with the idea of not going to church because the thought of getting ready makes my head want to implode.
I'm having to deal with the guilt of not going to church versus my overwhelming desire to rest and not wear myself into the ground before starting a whole other week of madness. I think I will take my Sabbath here, and thank God for it.

Friday, February 5, 2010


It's Friday! Which means almost nothing in this house where Papa works the weekends. Still, there is something exciting about Friday, even if it's only reminiscent of Fridays that actually meant going out, forgetting about every worry the week placed on you. I do like my weekends though--time with just me and my boys.
Daelynn's in town with Liana so this morning we are all going over to Deana's. I am blessed to be with my sisters. I better get going--one of my character flaws is endless procrastination and then RUSH hour like you have never seen it trying to get me and the boys and our five hundred bags ready to go for the day.
PLAN PREPARE RELAX. These three words DO NOT describe me.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

What the Milk Tastes Like.

Yes yes I did it. I pumped-on accident-more than I could take and there was a good drink left at the bottom of the bottle. I don't know exactly why; probably half curiosity, half not being able to throw in the trash all that precious, hard-worked-for stuff, but without thinking twice I chugged it down. And I am telling you that stuff is sweet. Like warm sugar water.
So BS on waiting to introduce fruits until after veggies so that the baby won't get hooked on sugar. My breast milk tasted like baby cream soda.
And suddenly it was weird that we drink milk from cows, and not just have the mama supply it for her family. Big boobs for a lifetime, plus the benefit of being able to eat whatever because you're burning so many calories pumping for the family's cereal.
Then that was weird.