Saturday, February 28, 2015


Our closet is above the garage... as is the rest of our bedroom and bathroom.  So my clothes are cold and I couldn't bear the thought of putting them on while they were so cold.  Decided to walk downstairs in my bra and underwear to heat up my clothes in the dryer.

As I walk past Riley, she says "My head hates my eyes for seeing that."

Thank you Riley... so much.  I hope your children speak such kind words to your soul when you are a mom.

Friday, February 27, 2015

My Grandpa Mo

My Grandpa Mo fell in his house and broke his hip about a month ago.  Anytime this happens with an older person, it seems that their bodies slow down greatly and that they die soon after. Unfortunately my Grandpa has pnuemonia, COPD and stage four lung cancer.  Any one of these would be awful, but the combination made it impossible for them to operate on his hip.

We've always enjoyed sharing stories among our family about his quirks.

He is very Republican.  Very.

He was an avid golfer - loved the game.  His house is on a golf course and he designed the home.

He worries about everything.

I have a picture of him clipping his finger nails over a trash can at a graduation party (think it was for my cousin Karlie).  The irony is that he was clipping them outside.  Not sure but that he could have just clipped them over the grass and it would have been fine.

He always made it clear to me that it must really be nice to have summers off and that teaching was an easy job.  Then told stories of when he taught a class... but don't remember the details.

His home always sounded like a battle zone - he watched movies about the various wars in our history constantly... while sleeping through them on the couch.  The rest of us got to hear them when we were there.  And Dosh was in a war every day :)

If he wanted a drink, he simply shook his glass up in the air and let the ice clink together.  Dosh would hear it and fill it.  (He once asked me to make him a martini... I told him I had no idea what was in that and had never had one.  I could have had more fun with that one and made something really interesting)

He used to smoke constantly.  I once hid a pack of his cigarettes in his refrigerator thinking it might help him not to smoke.

He has a distinct way of saying hello on the telephone... "Helllllooooooo" (deep and gravely)

I stayed at their home a few times when I lived in TN during college.  He tried to teach me to golf but I was terrible at it.

If he couldn't reach my parents by phone, he was known to call me and once left a long message that said something about how my parents wouldn't pick up the phone and he wondered if I knew where they were.

He came a few years ago to meet Riley and Julia.  Riley had been praying for a Rapunzel dress and Grandpa Mo bought it for her as a surprise.  As soon as she got it, she ran into her room and sat behind her chair.  Then came out to tell us that she had prayed to get the Rapunzel' wig.  She's a huge believer that God hears our prayers as a result of Grandpa Mo bringing her the dress.

He gave his time to drive people to hospitals to help them.

My parents are in TN with him at the moment.  My mom just texted to say that they are sitting and watching him breathe.  He is fighting a fever today and hasn't eaten anything since Wednesday - five days ago.  They have him on a strong dose of morphine and he's not in pain.  It's very likely he will not be with us much longer and I pray that he goes peacefully without pain.  That he is able to see Jesus.  That he can be free from cancer/COPD/pneumonia.

Random Acts of Kindness

After church, we always ask the girls to tell us about what they learned.  They are always eager to share.  There's also a paper we get from one of their teachers that lets us know the topic and some great questions to talk about as a family.  This week one of the questions from Riley's class was 'what random act of kindness can you do this week?' I asked her this and she paused for a while and then responded:

Well... I don't know.  You can't tell the future.  (a bit later)  And you can't go back to the past.

Goodbye February

It was a fast month apparently.  A few milestones:

1) Neither girl had the flu this February!  The last three years they have both had it the same week and one of them always had both strains at the same time making them incredibly sick.

2) Winter actually showed up.  It was chilly at times, but we hadn't had any snow.  Then this week happened.  We had two snow days (no school!) on Monday and Tuesday; early release today due to snow.  It's beautiful!

Other happenings that I remember:

1)  TMEA Conference - best one yet.  Had so many great ideas as a result of going to it.  Thought of it in a different light than I have in the past.  Planning to submit to present as well as to submit videos of both my fifth graders and my Orff ensemble.  Not sure that any of them will be chosen, but my goal this year is simply to put myself out there and see what happens.

2)  SMU - loving the research class!  Wasn't really sure about what I'd think about it as I hadn't done research in this way before.  Have been reading the book "Naked Statistics" by Charles Wheelan (not to be confused with "Naked Research"... made the choice to google that to find the book and found other things... not good.)  We had to read two chapters from this book, but I found it an excellent and much more practical way to understand concepts I hadn't learned before.

3)  Piano lessons - students are doing awesome; Riley is blowing me away with what she is accomplishing.

4) Laundry!  How could I forget laundry?!  Best news ever:  snow days allowed me to get ALL the laundry done AND put away.  It's always done, but rarely put away at the same time.  Usually sits folded in the hamper for a day or two.  This felt like a huge feat and I'm relishing in it.


Julia has found that she enjoys teasing and then laughing hard when the person is either confused or frustrated.

Two weeks ago, Julia was teasing Riley that the clinic appointment for Val (our dog) was at 10:55 hundred.  Riley said it's not possible and that you can't tease about that kind of thing.  We explained that you could tease about what time the appointment was - you just don't say the correct time.  Riley decided to give an example of why you can't:

Like if someone asked what kind of eggs you wanted and you told them bacon.  Like what would it be with that?

Jeremy: (changing the subject after laughing)  Anyone want to listen to Taylor Swift?

Riley:  Yes!!

Julia:  No!!

Riley:  Hey!!!!!!

Julia:  Ha - just teasing.


(I'm only over an entire month behind on this one...)

Picked up Julia from her school. As we are walking out of her school, she looks up at a picture and tells me, "Mom - that's one of our principals."

It was a picture of Martin Luther King.


Jeremy: (getting breakfast smoothies ready)  Jules, do you want something more to eat?  Want to get a granola bar?

Julia:  No thanks.  I think I'll just be healthy eating these donuts.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

When the Power Goes Out

Yesterday I was talking with my mom on the phone when I arrived home.  Clicked the garage door button in the car and nothing happened.  Tried a few more times and still nothing happened.  I told her I needed to let her go so I could figure it out.

I saw that the home across from us had their porch light on.  The home to our left also had their lights on.  Our home looked dark, but we hadn't left any lights on.  Completely normal.

Julia and I walked around to the front of the house to get inside (I had just dropped Riley at dance before coming home).  When we walked in, it was eerily dark.  Saw that the kitchen appliances had no times on them and knew we had no power.  Immediately thought that a rat or other animal had chewed some wires causing the problem.

When I called Jeremy, he was baffled as well and said he'd call CoServ, our electric company.  Being that it was after 5pm, they were closed.  He then checked our account and called me.

He told me that we had missed a payment.  I was confused as I wouldn't have thought they'd turn off the power with only one missed payment.  He then told me that we had actually missed the last two payments.  Somehow he had missed them and in the business of the past two months hadn't paid.

At first, I found it somewhat funny.  And annoying.  And frustrating.  But mostly funny.  Here we had money in the bank to cover it no problem and at the same time we were home without any power.  I called my mom and she said that we could come to their home to spend the night.  Using the flashlight on my phone, I quickly gathered essentials for us to go there.

Julia kept turning on light switches and saying "Well - there's no power in there!  And look Mom - this switch doesn't work either.  There's no power in this room either."  She was truly amazed that nothing responded.  She then replied "This is a problem!"

Jeremy arrived home and we made the choice that he would stay the night with Val, the dog, and snuggled on the couch to keep them both warm.  I would sleep with the girls at my parents' house.  We all headed to get dinner and settled at my folks.  He felt like an idiot for forgetting to pay the bills - this was without my adding any insult I should add!  He explained to Julia that it was his fault that the power wasn't on.  Julia responded with a loving "I forgive you Dad."  It was incredibly sweet.

When we got in the car to leave, Julia then tells me "Whatever the thing that Dad did, I forgive him."  I told her that I did too. As the hours went on, I began wondering what else might not have been paid and what else could have been forgotten.  I was frustrated that the bills wouldn't have been paid - and not due to being unable to pay them; just not getting it done and being responsible with it.  Then I realized that mistakes happen and it's just part of life.  Move on. 

That being said, we are planning to sit down this weekend to go over everything financial to get a better conversation going on about where we are.  We used to have so much more time to discuss everything and it's been harder as we've taken on more.  Need to work on our priorities!

The girls were thrilled about spending the night at Grandma and Grandpa's house.  Especially on a school night!  Riley was quite surprised when Jeremy picked her up after dance.

Riley:  Do you have any paper?
Me:  Yes - why?
Riley:  Well can I have some?
Me:  Yeah - what for?
Riley:  I want to write this story for my class
Jeremy:  Oh please don't!

We had dinner and the girls played for a while.  The three of us settled into a queen sized bed.  Riley towards the wall, Julia in the middle and me closest to the edge.  The girls crashed pretty easy and it was comfortable... at least the bed was - not the small amount of space I had.

I hadn't been feeling well the past few days - pretty sure due to allergies - but was worn down and stressed.  Chose to stay home today and rest. 

Jeremy called CoServ this morning and had already paid the bills last night.  Power was turned on and life is returning back to normal.  So thankful.  Now to kick this sickness and give my husband a big kiss when I do!