Monday, March 31, 2008

An update on Jaco

Jaco is doing well, he has finally completed all of his puppy immunizations..and he hated every minute of it. We recently took him to a St. Patricks Day Parade...He also didn't like that very much...apparently bagpipes are scary. But here he is with Matt.

Oh, so cute, both of 'em.

And here he is trying to start a fight....he has taken the story of David and Goliath to heart obviously.

Now...look closely...'Goliath' doesn't seem to be taking Jaco very seriously, does he?

Why...that dog is sticking his tongue out at my puppy! That dog has some nerve!

In other news...his ears are doing something funny...


I can't explain it. I took this yesterday, but they have been like this for about a week. I laugh so hard every time he looks at me with those rabbit ears. He's too much I tell ya!

Crutches (And Emergency Room Visit #3)

When I was young I had an odd fascination with crutches. I wanted them SO badly. I was willing to suffer the pain of a broken leg in order to have them.

I never accomplished the broken leg, I just want to get that out right now. I failed in that regard.

But, in Kindergarten, I came so close! We had one of those brightly colored play houses in my classroom, you know, the ones with a slide? Sort of like this...

But let's face it, this was a while ago, and there is no way it looked like that. All I remember was a slide and bright plastic. And i apologize for the picture quality, I didn't take it, I googled it.

So, back to the story, I climbed to the very top of the playhouse, and took a flying leap. My goal was to end with my ankle bent, but at the last minute I chickened out and tried to correct my landing...so I ended up with only a minor sprain.

You have to realize that I was so completely reckless as a child, I had absolutely no regard for my poor Mother's nerves...or medical bills.

We ended up having to go to the hospital again, because five year olds should not be walking with a limp.

The doctor checked me out, wrapped my ankle, and asked my Mom if she wanted me on crutches for a couple of days to help the healing process.

My heart leapt. Crutches! For me! It was a greater thrill than Ralphie could have felt about his Red Rider beebee gun, I am sure I had the same sort of glazed smile on my face and wonderlust in my eyes..

"Is that necessary?" She asked the doctor.

"Oh probably not, it's up to you." He said. "Oh, well then, we will see how she does without them." She replied.

I felt as if the air had been sucked from my chest. No crutches? What does a girl have to do to get crutches around this place?! Woe is me! I think I may have blacked the rest out. I don't remember leaving the hospital, or recovering from my sprain. Only years of therapy and hypnosis will unlock those repressed memories.

To this day, I still have not managed to need crutches, although I am no longer willing to jump from great heights to get them..they still fascinate me.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Ups and Downs

Matt and I had some ups and downs when we first started dating.

Not the way you are thinking, we had literal ups and downs. Matt likes to pick me up, I like to stay down. I enjoy having both feet firmly planted on the ground...it just makes sense to me.

And, to illustrate why I like being down, I will give you a glimpse into our relationship. Don't judge me by my hair, I can't help it, I was hiking! This particular series of photos is of the two of us, climbing waterfalls. We like doing things like this, and this particular place was more leisurely of a climb, so we could pause and pose for pictures. We climbed over a small run and posed for this one.
Then, because Matt was trying to be cute and romantic and spin me, he picked me up. "No, no" I said. " We might fall, look out for the wet spots its slippery."
"Don't worry," he said, "I got you."
Then, remember the wet spot I mentioned? Well, he found it.
Thank goodness for dead trees! I would like to point out that at this point, Brandon just kept snapping pictures instead of helping, and my dear sister just laughed.
It really wasn't too bad, we were lucky we landed in water not on rocks, and that the water was relatively shallow.

Needless to say...I still don't like to be picked up. But he still does anyway.

And I find this picture funny because for some reason my hand is blurry, like I was about to hit him...there. I wasn't! I swear!

Have a nice weekend!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Meeting My In-Laws

Ever since the show Everybody Loves Raymond came out, I have had this nagging fear that my in-laws were going to be like that. I was convinced that they would not approve of me, and that we would never get along.

These fears were reaffirmed when I met the parents of an ex, they had pictures of his previous girlfriend all over the house...nightmare!

Matt told me that he wanted to go visit his parents so I could meet them a few weeks after we had started dating. We were getting ready to leave his apartment, as I was headed towards the door he asked me "Don't you want to bring some clothes?"

"No, why?" I asked him.

"Oh, I thought I told you, we are staying at their house for the weekend."

My stomach hit the floor. Staying at their house??? But, but, but they are not going to like me! I cant stay at their house! What if they see me in the morning and disapprove of my bad hair? Of course I said none of this to him, packed a bag, and off we went.

I met him outside to see that he had taken the top off of his Jeep. Now, any curly haired girl will tell you that, although the idea of the wind blowing through your hair is nice, it is not good for curls! And giant frizzy hair was not quite the impression I wanted to make on his parents!

We decided to stop and have a little picnic first, after which we took a little walk, during which I slipped and fell in a creek.

By the time we got to his parents house I was muddy, wet, frizzy, and sun burnt. This was not what I had planned on.

His parents were so sweet and so nice, and I honestly felt very good about the meeting. We ate dinner and decided to go for a walk by a lake. On the drive there I started feeling sick, and by the time we got there I was miserable. I was dizzy, my head hurt, my stomach ached...and I didn't want to ruin our outing so I didn't say anything.

I was so sick by the time we got home, I immediately ran to the bathroom and threw up (sorry, I know that's not a nice topic of conversation but its a part of the story and I'm not going to hide the truth from you!), changed into my pajamas, and fell asleep on the couch with Matt.

After that though, the weekend went great! He comes from a fantastic family, and to date, none of my Everybody Loves Raymond nightmares have come true.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Emergency Room Visit #2

By the way, these posts are not going to be in chronological order. Because I am not that organized. I'm just not.

So anyway, this particular visit to the hospital was the result of a slight injury on a camping trip.

This was after my parents had divorced so I was probably around 9 or 10, and my dad had taken us camping. It was the last day of our trip and we were packing up. And by we I mean my dad was packing, I was sitting on the ground watching him pack.

I leaned back on my arms and felt a prick on my finger, I spun around and saw this hanging from my middle finger...

That, my friends, is a baby copperhead. Note that it is not as big as it looks, that is an ant next to its head. See how his tail is yellowish-green? That means he is a baby. Unfortunately babies are just as poisonous. In my recollection, which is always 100% accurate he was about 6-8 inches long. Oh, and that's not the one that bit me, that one didn't make it.

"Daddy! That worm just bit me!" I yelled as i shook the snake off my hand.

He came running over and figured out very quickly that it was NOT a worm, and bashed it with a rock ( I don't condone or agree with the killing of animals just because they can be dangerous, but I can understand his reaction here.)

He grabbed me and put me in the van, and yelled to a friend to get my brother and sister. Meanwhile, I had absolutely no idea why he was so upset about the biting worm, and was waving goodbye to the crowd who had gathered. I was quite the celebrity!

AND, for the first time in my life I was in a vehicle moving fast, really fast.

We got to the hospital and I was promptly treated, that's the good thing about snakebite victims, they don't have to wait as long in the waiting room.

The doctor slit my finger open at the bite (which was tiny) and poured something into it, they were pretty sure I had shaken the snake off before much, if any, venom had gotten into my finger, so it was a quick and easy procedure.

When we had left and were headed back to my Mom's house, as we drove down the lane my dad told us not to tell our Mom until he got a chance to explain it to her.

So, we pulled up, opened the van door, and my brother (who was about 4) ran into the house screaming "Bekah got bit by a snake! Bekah got bit by a snake!"

Gosh, kids are good at secret-keeping!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter 2008

Easter was fun this year, my nephew Branson has learned that the Easter Bunny is, in fact, not real. He broke the news to me in the car after church.

"Bekah, did you know that the Easter Bunny didn't give me this candy?" he asked me as he dug through his basket.

"Oh, he didn't? Who is it from, bud?"

"Daddy got it for me. The Easter Bunny isn't real. Neither is Santa. Or Leprechauns."

I wasn't sure when he stopped believing in these things, so I feigned ignorance. "Oh really?" I asked.

"Yeah, they haven't been alive for a long time, not since Jesus was here, but when Jesus was here so was Santa and the Easter Bunny, Jesus is the only one who made it."

I love conversations with Branson. He has the most interesting logic, and is always willing to share it, even if he is only one who understands.

Later at my Dads house, Branson painted eggs. Then, he and my Dad went outside to throw them.

Yeah, throw them...I have no idea why.

I thought Easter Eggs were for eating. Apparently not, they are actually brightly colored grenades. My mistake.

Oooo

So....I was tagged in a meme on Friday by Country Girl (and sorry it took so long...I spent the weekend sans Internet, but now I am back in action!)

The rules are
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

So without further ado...

1. I absolutely CANNOT be in a room with peeps (marshmallows) and not eat all of the eyes off of them. (This was the first thing to come to mind for obvious reasons)

2. I prefer my soda flat...I am not a big soda drinker, so the carbonation just is not my thing.

3. I can't stand to see someone drink directly out of a bottle, a certain someone knows this is pretty much a guaranteed way to make sure I don't drink his drinks.

4. One of my goals in life is to be proficient in American Sign Language, so far I am only barely conversational, haha and only when the conversation is about certain things. But I love it!

5. I am one of five children, four girls and one boys. And at one point all four of the girls shared a bedroom...disaster.

6. I don't function well without my coffee.

7. I like playing football...not tackle football mind you, just tag.

Now, about tagging seven people...I think I only know about two or three. So...Mosaicroro, Lifeisasong, you are up!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Happy Easter

Have a great weekend! See you Monday!


Oh, and I thought I would share this! This was sent to me in an email...and even though someone ends up sending this to me at least once every Easter, it never stops making me smile!

Who doesn't love talking food, it's just such pure, simple humor.

College is Tough...

It wasn't the classes, or even the papers that scared me so much about college, it was the people!

You see...I am shy, I like people a lot, I just am shy about talking to people I don't know. You can imagine why this caused some problems my first semester away at college...in New Jersey of all places.

I was always afraid I would do something to embarrass myself. I have come to understand that I will always do something to embarrass myself, and now I can laugh at these foibles, but back then I was beyond petrified.

One incident stands out in my mind. I had gone up to the dining hall for lunch, by myself, and was carrying my tray over to a table when my flip-flop broke.

You know what I mean...when the little thong part comes out of the bottom, and you have to drag your foot across the floor like Igor? Yeah, it was like that. Inconspicuous I was not.

I hobbled over to my table and tried to pretend nothing happened, ate my lunch like usual, then pondered how I was going to get back to my room.

I came to the conclusion that it would be best to simply go barefoot. Maybe everyone would think I was cool in a hippie sort of way, boho-shic if you will. I'm pretty sure I came off as more of just some weird barefoot girl walking down the path. And it was a long walk and the sidewalk was hot! Well, probably around 10 minutes or so, but it felt like forever. My cheeks burned in shame and my feet burned in pain.

I ate spagettio's in my room for at least a week. I swore I would never eat in the dining hall again, but I caved when I ran out of canned goods.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Easter Memories

It just occurred to me today that Easter is on Sunday, this Sunday, as in 3 days away. I mean, I knew it was, but it seems so weird! Easter in March? Huh? Who did that?

So thoughts and memories of Easters past began coming back to me, and here is one I thought I would share with you.

I was around 10 I think, but I am not sure. I was young enough to be wearing a hat and gloves to church for Easter, but then again I think I did that until I was 14. So anyway...I was young.

My mom had given us our baskets and mine had two adorable plastic Amish dolls, a boy and a girl. I decided to take these to church with me, and was playing with them inside of my hat on the drive to church. (Haha side note...what are Amish kids doing in a car?? Okay that's not as funny as it was in my head).

I was playing in the backseat when my mom screamed...and then I don't remember anything until there was another lady looking in the door asking if we were okay. We had gotten in a pretty bad car accident. We were all slightly bruised, but all in all we came out pretty well. I had a nice shiner...and I mean nice. My entire eye socket was a shocking shade of purple. I thought this was pretty cool and was excited for the attention it would bring at school!

So Monday morning came and I headed off on the school bus. I always sat with my friend Kristin, and obviously she noticed my eye right away.

"Oh my gosh! What happened?" she asked me. I explained our harrowing brush with death as she listened with a rapt expression on her face.

"Well Bekah," she started, "I don't mean to be rude, but you were prettier without the black eye."

My stomach sank. Being pretty was not a big concern for me, if my mom managed to yank a brush through my hair I considered myself glammed up. But to hear it stated so baldly, so honestly, I was ashamed. It never crossed my mind that this black eye would be anything but an entire day of show and tell, but now it had become an entire week of being "not pretty".

Sigh...things change on you in an instant don't they? Such a downer!

Oh! and Happy Spring! I think that is today right? Well if it is not...Happy Early Spring!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Skye

I have previously mentioned my friend Skye here, but I feel like there is just so much more to say about her.

We have been buddies since we were 10 or 11, neither of us can really remember when we met, which is slightly odd since we were of a cognitive age and should remember, but whatever, that's just the way we are. In college we had a standing lunch date every Thursday, I always liked Thursdays for that reason. Here she is:

That isn't the most recent of pictures, but it made me laugh, so I put it in here. She loves when I do things like that.
We have traveled together, laughed together, cooked together, and cried together. Ooooh and how we have argued, but that's not what this post is about. No, this post is about traveling together.

We traveled to the Dominican Republic together no less than six times over the years, beginning when we were both 13. When we were around 15 or 16 we were getting lunch in the airport on our way back when we noticed a man staring at us. Not just looking at us, staring. Creepily.

Is creepily a word? I'm not sure.

Anyway...back to the story. We tried to ignore it for a while but he would not stop. It was slightly disconcerting to say the least.

So Skye, being Skye, took matters into her own hands. She looked him straight in the eye...

...and slowly...

...smashed her hot dog into the side of her face.

I don't know if I have ever laughed that hard. Ever. The man got a confused look on his face, and quickly walked away. Skye calmly wiped the ketchup off her face. A job well done.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

He's doing what???

So I found this today...

www.alife4sale.com

I feel a little sad. I just... I just feel sad. He makes me sad.

On the other hand, I wondered how long it took him to be able to put a price on his life? Could I do that? Would anyone be interested?

So I began to break down what I have...

A wonderful family...There is really no price you can put on that
An amazing man...Again, no price
Dirty dishes..those I'll give away for free
An adorable puppy...No way, but I can point you in the direction of his brothers and sisters
Student loans...again, free to any taker. I know, generous of me huh?

All in all, there is just no way I could walk away from this life, it's way to wonderful to give up.

Dirty dishes and all.

Emergency Room Visit #1

I have had several trips to the emergency room over the course of my life, and most of them I caused. And by that I mean I did something that still causes my parents to shake their heads and wonder how they produced someone with so little common sense.

Trust me when I say I have developed some common sense as I have aged, but when I was little...ooooo boy, I was a handful (or so I have heard).

So the story begins after church on Sunday night when I was about two or three. My parents had gotten into conversation with someone, and I had begun crawling around on the floor. My memories of this even are somewhat limited, but here is what I know.

1.) I was wearing a dress, it kept getting stuck around my knees.
2.) I crawled under a chair, and found a fuzzy craft pompom. Like these:

3.) I thought that pompom was the greatest find since Howard Carter found King Tut.

4.) I stuck the pompom up my nose. I don't know why, but I did. And I pushed it far enough up there that I could no longer get it out.

At first my parents were merely exasperated that their toddler had stuck something up her nose, but as they realized I could not get it out they got a little concerned. They tried everything they could think of, but eventually surrendered to the knowledge that a professional was needed.

I have vague memories of the ride to the hospital, I think I was crying, not from pain but from my mother frantically urging me to blow my nose repeatedly.

I don't remember much once we got to the emergency room, but I imagine the conversation went something like this:

Nurse: Can I help you?

Dad: It's this little girl, she has a pompom jammed in her nose. She isn't mine, I found her.

Nurse: How did that happen?

Dad: Well, I don't know, she just got it up there and it won't come out.

Okay, I doubt my parents refused to claim me as their offspring, but they may have thought about it.

I swear that the doctor who treated me came at me with the biggest pair of tweezers EVER, and after the pompom was removed there was a sudden gush of blood. But I have been told that this is incorrect as well, and it was quick and painless, although the doctor probably questioned why he spent so much on medical school to treat senseless toddlers.

Unfortunately that was only the first of my emergency room visits. But hey, it could happen to anyone! Well, almost anyone?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Things I Have Overheard 2

A few years ago I was Christmas shopping with my best friend Skye, yes that is her real name. We were buying gifts for our sisters at Victoria's Secret, which has some good smellies...slightly strong for me, but it was Christmas and not about me and my olfactory preferences.

So anyway...we were shopping amidst hundreds (okay maybe not hundreds in that store, but you know what i mean) of others buying gifts for loved ones. We happened to be near two men buying gifts for their wives. I assume they were either brothers or very close friends since they were helping each other pick out...uhh "sleepwear"...for their wives.

"Well, I like this one, but I just can't decide which color" said the first gift-buyer.

"What are the two colors you like the best?" asked his friend.

"Well," he replied, "I really like the white one, but white just gets so dirty so easily."

At this point I moved away, mostly so they would not hear me snort my drink through my nose, but also because I was afraid to hear what might come next.

I have always thought the thought processes of men, when it comes to women anyway, to be cute in a simple sort way. Where did he think she would be wearing that to get it dirty? Trust me when I say this particular item was not one that could be worn outside of the house.

Everytime I walk past a Victoria's Secret store I can't help but smile at the simple logic of that gift-buyer.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Cooking with Country Mouse

Ha, I bet you thought this would be an instructive post...WRONG! This is another story!

My mom had gone out on errands of some sort, and my older sister, younger brother and I decided to make peanut butter cookies for her! I was probably around 9 when this happened and I can't remember if there was an event we were making them for, Mom - if you are reading - was this for anything special? Mother's day, birthday, etc?

Anyway...for whatever reason, we were making cookies. Emily (my sister) was instructing us, and I was telling Everett (my brother) what to do. But I made one tragic mistake.

I misread the directions. I helped Everett measure the salt, and we added it to the mixture before anyone doublechecked. After all, I was 9 and probably should have paid more attention to detail, but that's really not my nature. So I accidentally added one and a half cups of salt to our batter.

It could happen to anyone! Yes, it could!

I think my Nanna caught on to my mistake and tried to get some of it out, but I had already mixed it...of course.

My mom, being the wonderful, loving woman that she is ate a cookie anyway, and told us she loved it, which she probably did ..but certainly not for the taste! I recently found out she saved one as well. She has the salty little treat in a baggie with her keepsakes to this day.

I never forgot the salt incident, and its the one ingredient I always double-check.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Maw Maw

I once told my mother that I was going to have little redneck kids, and they were going to run around naked and call her Maw Maw. She disapproved...so since then I have made sure to call her that just to prepare her. Its been loads of fun.


My mom might just be the sweetest woman that ever lived. If you know her I am sure you agree.

She is also the cleanest woman that ever lived. I once walked in on her vacuuming the vacuum. Apparently they get dusty too, which is true, I just never would have thought to vacuum it!


She got tennis elbow a few years ago, she doesn't play tennis. So I maintain that it was a combination of sweeping and window-cleaning elbow.


Oh she also has only one kidney...this lovely lady has the other. But that's another story for another time.


My favorite Mom advice was about love and marriage "It's not all running through a field with little white butterflies flippin' around your head!"

The image of little white butterflies flailing through the air has stuck with me to this day.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Toffee, Dahling....

It came to light a few years ago that my little brother never knew there was a difference between taffy...as in the salt-water candy, and toffee...as in the molasses based candy.

I am not sure how or when the misunderstanding began, but to explain it in his words, he thought toffee was "how rich people say taffy, ya know...toffee dahling." Come on, say it with me. Toffee dahling.....

Like Mr Howell from Gilligan's Island.

Come to think of it, Gilligan's Island probably had something to do with his misguided belief. We farm mice didn't get a lot of exposure to millionaires and he(my brother) must have thought all wealthy folk speak like the Howells.

Oh brother.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Baby Sister

Today is my youngest sisters birthday!

She was the cutest kid, she had the best diaper waddle I have ever seen on any child. It was truly remarkable.

Not only that...but she had soft, bouncy curls, pouty lips, and big beautiful eyes. Needless to say that little stinker got away with everything.


As the youngest of four girls she was always in a rush to catch up...for instance I am pretty sure she started shaving her legs at the age of 9. No really, she did!


She turned out rather beautiful, wouldn't you agree?

I know, I know...disgusting (and I mean that with all the love of a big sister). Not too long ago she gave us all a big scare...

It wasn't her fault...but still very scary!

She is also a phenomenal volleyball player...I don't know anything about the game of volleyball, other than I must pay attention or risk taking a volleyball to the head, hypothetically speaking of course.

And most of the pictures she takes look like this...

I don't really know why..but I know she is happy I put this on here.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Oh Dear

I would like to share something with you....
That's Brandon...interesting, no? Father of the aforementioned "
studmuffin".

In 32 days he is marrying my sister...God help us all*...

She looks happy, so I suppose it's for the best

*He is a fantastic guy and I could not wish for more for my dear sweet sister! But DO NOT tell him I said that.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Euphemisms

So, I have this favorite book, you should check it out. It is told from the viewpoint of a 15 year-old boy who is mildly autistic. He is a math whiz but hopeless when it comes to understanding other people. One of my favorite parts is when he explains why he doesn't understand what people are trying to say when they use euphemisms like "the apple of my eye".

Speaking of euphemisms....

One night when I was a student at Rutgers U., my friend Emily and I were hanging out in her dorm room with the door open when two girls walked by carrying on a loud discussion about a guy they both knew.

"He's just not the hottest crayon in the box" one said with authority.

"You mean the brightest crayon in the box?" asked her friend.

"No" she snorted in reply, "I mean he's not hot."

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Cricket

When I was about 10 or 11 my mom took us to a pet store. I was once again at the height of fashion in overalls. I was browsing the reptile department when I noticed that the crickets (i.e. snake food) had made a break for it and were now hopping all over the floor. Being the tomboy that I was, I decided a cricket would make a great pet, and snagged one before my mom called for me to leave.

If only that were the end of the story. But then it wouldnt be much of a story now would it?
I cupped my hands around my cricket as we walked to our car, but when I opened my hands to see my new pet, he was gone! Oh woe is me, he was a faithful friend.

Our next stop was the bread store. On the way there I kept wiggling in my seat...

You know how sometimes you can't get comfortable, everything itches...you feel like bugs are crawling in your pants. It was that feeling.

"Mom" I whined, "I think there is a cricket in my pants!" Now I had concealed the fact that I was adopting a cricket from the pet store, so she dismissed my plaintive cries of discomfort to my quirks of being the middle child raised on a farm.

We got out of the car at the pet store and I once again cried to my mother that I thought there was a cricket in my pants. She dragged me to the counter and asked the lovely ladies working if there was a restroom we could use. They informed us that is was for employee use only.

"Please, my daughter thinks there is a cricket in her pants" she informed them. I saw their looks of mingled confusion and disgust, but one of them finally gave in and led us to the restroom. Once inside my mom looked at me and said "Okay Rebekah, pull down your pants".

I did...nothing. "See" she said, "I told you there is no way there was a cricket in your pants."

I pulled down my underpants....and there it was....the cricket. Oh the horror! It still makes me shudder!

Back in the store my mother announced, to my humiliation, "Well what do you know! She really did have a cricket in her pants!"

I don't think I have picked up a cricket to this day. Would you?

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Studmuffin

Stud alert!

Meet my nephew...he is such a stud.

He has a tendency to pull me aside to confide some deep dark secret to me, one that he could not possibly say in front of anyone else. For instance, one night he and I were watching a movie in the living room, he leaned into me and said "Bekah, can we go into your room, I need to talk"

"Oh, okay. Sure, what's on your mind?" He looked down and tried to put words to his emotions. "It's just -- I just -- Bekah, I don't know how to make a rubber band ball..." He hung his head in shame. For a second I was at a loss...what do you say??

"Uh, buddy, that's okay. I can probably teach you to do that" His eyes brightened as he said "okay!" and skipped on out to finish his movie.

A couple weeks later he asked if we could talk again. I was sort of expecting the same type of dilemma. So this time as we sat down to chat I felt a little more confident in my ability to handle the personal drama of a first grader. "Bekah, I just -- I just don't think you are ever going to kiss me."

Once again, this child has left me unable to reply.

"Uh, what?"

"Well Bekah, I have gotten really close to your face and usually when I do that people kiss me."

"Oh...sorry." I hung my head in shame...I didn't know!

Since that incident there have been great strides in our relationship. I kiss him on the cheek, and he has a rubber band ball.

Life is good.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Oukie and Dass

For as long as I can remember my Aunt and Uncle (Oukie and Dass) have basically been a second set of parents to my siblings and me.

Oukie is my Mom's sister, and she has the best laugh you will ever hear. Dass is a Richard Gere look alike who dances to music only he can hear, I realized that sounds sort of like "marches to the beat of a different drum" but that's not what I mean...what I mean is he just dances. In the kitchen. In the living room. Wherever he wants to. They are wonderful.

In January they moved to Croatia. Yeah, I know. Weird! But it's not really, it has been great for them. They email regularly, and send us pictures that make us jealous. When they said they were moving to Croatia I immediately thought of Russia...I don't know why, my geography knowledge leaves something to be desired. But it is nothing like Russia, no...it looks like this...

So, while we have been dealing with ice falling from the sky, they have been doing this...

That is Dass shopping at an open air fruit and veggie market...

And this is Oukie kissing a fish skeleton...because what else would she do there?

I miss them. But I am happy for them! And jealous. Aren't you?

Country Mouse Travels

When I was nineteen I decided to do something out of the ordinary. I moved. To a different country (okay only for three months...but still!). I went to the Dominican Republic to work construction for some of the villages there. It was a life-changing experience, in more ways than one. Not only did I get the chance to immerse myself in a culture so unlike my own, but I had the opportunity to help them help themselves. I truly believe that in order to really help someone, you have to teach them how to better themselves. Here is what we were building...




What is so cool about it is that it is portable, oh and its a chapel, I think i forgot to mention that. We were building churches for communities that couldn't afford to do it on their own.


It was hard work, but it was so worth it. Some moments change the way you see the world.


Like this...



This a pastor who, until this point, had been conducting services in the street. They would set up chairs and have an impromptu church service. Seeing a smile on the face of someone, and knowing that you helped put it there is a feeling unlike any other.

Another way that trip changed my life is it is also where I met the man that would become my husband. We talk about that trip and laugh, because neither of us had any idea the way it would drastically change our lives. He looks at pictures of himself on that trip, shakes his head and mutters "poor sap, you have no idea what you are getting yourself into", but I see the smile begin in his eyes.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Puppy Breath?

I would like to introduce you to the newest member of our family....
His name is Jaco (pronounced jocko), and he is little mixed mutt we adopted off a cow farm.

I have always wanted a dog of my very own, and I spent the entire day in anticipation of what fun we would have with our new puppy. I bought him a camoflage bandana and a snazzy collar. I simply could not wait to pick him up and smell his little puppy breath...

Well, let me tell ya folks, his breath is nothing to ooh and aah over! he somehow managed to skip the cute puppy breath stage and go straight to the "I eat out of the garbage" breath stage. I recently brought this up to Jaco and his response?

Pssh, real mature Jaco, REAL mature.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Uncle Sam

For as long as I can remember, seeing Uncle Sam was sort of like spotting a celebrity. He wasn't around all that often. He was just the coolest, biggest, strongest man a little farm girl could know. AND he always gave me red Kool-Aid. AND he would bring us containers of pennies to roll and take to the bank. AND he was just plain cool.


I realize now that he really is pretty cool. He is now a bush pilot in Alaska. No, really. look.

That's him sleeping on the wing of his plane. Oooh and check this out...

When he showed me this picture I tried to call him out and say that he photoshopped himself into it, which he vehemently denied. He has more pictures so I guess I believe him.

He was in the Army Rangers, and for a long time I thought maybe, just maybe, he never actually stopped being in the Army and was a super secret spy for the real Uncle Sam...hey I was young and lived on a farm. I had to make my own intrigue!

I really think every child should grow up with an Uncle Sam. There was always an interesting story for us a Christmas...stories my Mom didn't want us to hear, and that only made it all the more interesting!

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