Thursday, October 30, 2008

Call Doc Baker. . . Wyatt's Got Small Pox. . .Or Something. . .

The Boy woke up like this today. Doc says she hasn't a clue and to keep an eye on it. Um, OK, great. Is he contagious? Is he having a reaction? Can he trick or treat? Not that I have a costume for him yet or anything. . .

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Two Hanky Sunday

I hope you are all sitting down. I have big news that will be a shock those of you who know me well. Hold on to your hats.

I cried in church today. Twice.

OK, I'll give you a sec to catch your breath. I am not a crier. Ever. Most especially in public. I don't even know if I cried at my mom's funeral in front of anyone. It's just not in me but I did it TWICE this morning. For the purpose of bringing a lot of folks up to date and to try to explain the spiritual journey that our family has been on for the past few years, we'll talk about why I cried in church.

We have decided to switch churches. This was not an easy or quick decision though because it was not something we talked about much it may seem that way. For 11 years we have been at Crossroads and it has been home to us. Crossroads is a seeker-driven church that has a heavy emphasis on outreach into the community. They do a great job of bring the news of God's grace to many people who would never set foot in a church. While we loved that part of Crossroads, many other things just didn't seem to be a good fit with our family. Tim and I both grew up in Christian Reformed churches with a heavy (sometimes too heavy!) emphasis on knowledge and "book learning" part of the Christian life. We also spent our jr high and high school years in smaller youth groups where we were able to have relationship with our leaders. Even thought I haven't talked to them in years, I still Greg and Mary Beth among the most influential people in my teen years. We also had the opportunity to participate in such denominational events as the YCF Convention, SWIM, and SERVE. While Crossroads has a great youth program, it does not provide these things that we want for our kids. While we are looking for these things in a kids/youth program, we saw a young man make Profession of Faith this morning. He is currently serving in the US Army and will be deployed to Afghanistan next spring. When he stood up there with the pastor and youth pastor and answered those questions, I cried. More than anything, I want my kids to stand up there and answer those questions and we have decided FOR US a different church is the best way to assist us as parents to lead our kids to that point. Just so you know, this is a personal decision for us, we are not making any statements that Crossroads is wrong or ineffective in their ministry to kids.

So after Profession of Faith we are moving at a rapid clip through the service until we get to the Celebration of Communion. We recited the Apostles Creed. If you need a reminder about how much I love creeds and such, you can read this old post. As we said the creed, I got all sniffly again. Not just because I missed it and love to say it but it was at that moment that I had confirmation from the Holy Spirit that we were doing the right thing. I jsut had that feeling that yes, we made the right decision. It's hard to move on. We have lots of friends at Crossroads and I am afraid we'll lose them. That fear~and a big dose of laziness~kept us at Crossroads for probably longer than we should have stayed. Things are starting to fall into place. The new church is starting a MOPS program and I have already been invited to be involved. We'll see if I'm ready to jump into MOPS again! So we are now where we belong for this time and we're happy.

Friday, October 24, 2008

It's Dangerous to Count Other People's Money

My friend Leenie has an interesting discussion going on her blog about spoiled kids. This started out as a comment there but got a little long winded so I moved it here.

Often in our suburban culture we see who has what and we are all quick to make judgments based on that. While I do not know the pain of being stereotyped based on my race or appearance, people often make judgments about me based on my family. My family owns a profitable and publicly recognized business that bears the family name so I spent a lot of time growing up saying, "Yes, I am related to them." I realized this sounds a little like a "poor little rich girl" pity party but hang with me here! I am forever grateful that my parents were able to provide for my sister, brother and I. We all got the gift of a Christian education all the way through college. We got to travel and experience lots great things. My parents were able to assist my grandparents as they aged.

There is an assumption that if parents spend money on their kids they do not spend time with them or teach them anything valuable. Why is it one or the other? It is possible to be a good parent and have money. People make assumptions about me all the time based on my family's income level and sometimes that is really painful. I did not have things handed to me~with the exception of my college education I worked for things (my Guess jeans, my first car, ect.) just like everyone else. My parents were great parents and taught me all the same things that parents who weren't as well-off taught their kids. Spoiled is a mind set, not a dollar amount. Spoiling kids is teaching them the universe revolves around them. You can do that in lots of ways that do not involve money.

Yes, my kids wear name brand clothes. They have American Girl Dolls. They also do not own a gaming system or battery powered vehicles. They have never been to WDW. It's all relative. There will always be someone who spends $1 less on their kids and will call your kids spoiled. Holding a ruler up to a family and making judgments on how they spend their money is stereotyping. They are lots of well-off parents who are teaching their kids unconditional love and respect just as they are lots of parents who struggle financially and don't teach their kids these things. Judging people based on income or possessions is just as wrong as judging people on any other outside criteria.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

My Bad A$$ Baby Boy

Seriously, Wyatt. You are going to need to do better than that for anyone to be afraid of you!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

No Veep

Complete bummer. Dick Cheney had an irregular heart rhythm so he couldn't come to Marty's today. We still had a nice lunch and I got to meet a lot of people. VP Cheney called in and did a brief talk about the election on the phone so we did get to hear him. He really has a great sense of humor which kinda a surprised me. He's got such a dry old guy persona.

Thanks for all the advice on what to wear. I did figure it out on my own and did know not to wear jeans even though my dad called early this morning to make sure I didn't wear jeans. I think he was channeling my mother for a minute. I wore a brown skirt, ivory turtleneck sweater, and a tailored denim jacket none of which had baby stains of any sort on them.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Where Are Stacey and Clinton?

I am so geeked! I am going to meet and greet VP Dick Cheney on Wednesday at my cousin's house. Marty Ozinga is running for US Congress and the Veep is coming to support and encourage the troops working to get Marty elected.

What on earth does a SAHM mom wear to this?! Someone told me "business casual". Great. My business casual is a pair of Old Navy yoga pants from 2002 and a pink T shirt with a baby food stain on it. Dressy would be a pair of jeans with a J Crew hoodie. Help.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

I Love This Harbor

I love Hilton Head. Seriously. It's my favorite place to go. It's probably genetic because my parents love Hilton Head. They went on their honeymoon there and have been back at least a zillion times since. It's one of those places that has that indescribable "thing" that makes you love it but I will try to tell you a bit about it. If you have ever been there, you know what I mean! Though for me, a lot of the love is nostalgia for my mom. She loved it there and it's the only place that I can still picture her.

This past summer we made our third trip to Hilton Head with Doug and Christine + Kiddos. What a trip! The last time we made this joint family vacation I was pregnant with Greta and Christine was pregnant with Wesley so we were at a bit of a disadvantage! This year was easier and harder. We had bigger kids which meant a trip to the park or the kiddie pool was not going to make them giddy but they were almost all old enough to fend for themselves a lot of the time. We did more splitting up this year than in the past but I think that worked out for the best. Tim and I are more "lay around and do nothing" vacationers and Doug and Christine are more "get out and do stuff" kinda folks. Well, maybe not exactly. Some of that is more a function of how old our kids are and how work-busy our lives back home are. Anyhoo, it worked nice to be able to split up or do things together based on schedules or lack of schedules~particularly Wyatt's naps. The big treat this tiem around was grown-up dinner! We went out for dinner twice without the kids and that was the highlight of the trip for me! We had a great time and love the tradition of doing HHI every summer.
Here's Amelia, Caroline, Emily B, and Greta waiting to Gregg to start singing. One of the best parts of Hilton Head is the fun family things to do. A long-time favorite of the my family is Gregg Russell AKA the Jerk Under the Tree. He's been playing under the Liberty Oak Tree in Harbor Town since 1976. Gregg is another Linda thing. She loved him so much. I remember her sitting at his show singing along with him. He's definitely heavy on the cheese but the more fruity grown up drinks you have, the more fun he is!After the show last summer, me and the kiddos with Gregg Russell.

Here's a shot of Doug and Tim getting ready for another fantabulous part of Hilton Head. A little family tradition we call Happy Hour. We start prepping at about 4:30 with the official start of HH on the screened in upper deck at 5:00. In addition to your choice of cocktail, there is always fresh local shrimp and oysters, cheese and crackers, veggies, and all kinds of other goodies. You could make a full meal out of Happy Hour and we often do!

Just one last shot of me and the girls last Christmas in Harbor Town. We love to go down to Carolina for Christmas. It's warmer than the Midwest and has great shopping!