Wednesday, August 26, 2015

That's a Bummer

A mother/son conversation while doing laundry this morning:

"Hey Mom?"

"Yeah Max?"

"Being a male bird-eating spider is a real bummer, because a few days after he impresses the female, they mate and then she kills and eats him."

I love so many things about this kid, perhaps most of all that he described the above process as "a real bummer."

I can't believe I ever hoped he'd be a girl. 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Some People Will Do Anything for Free Food

Nothing beats dressing up like cows for a free fried chicken sandwich and some fries, am I right?

The highlight of the entire adventure for me was when my four year old looked me up and down and said repeatedly, "You look like a cow, Mommy! My Mommy's a cow!" My self esteem is sky rocketing.

Did you know that cows have whiskers? And mohawks? 

Well they do. The kids even won four free breakfast meals in some cow game. Total awesomeness. Hip, Hip, Hooray for Chick Fil A!

Eat mor chikin, ya'll.

Monday, July 13, 2015

July 4th, Cincy Style

We spent the weekend of July 4th in Cincinnati. We took in a great parade, made s'mores in Grammy's new fire pit, watched fireworks, and terrorized a horde of lightning bugs with sparklers. The next day we woke up to more beautiful sunshine and Greg was hankering for an adventure, so we spent the day at Miami, his alma mater.

One of his all-time favorite eateries, the Bagel & Deli.

George Washington has become one of the heroes of my history-loving kids. We learned all about him last year, so they were thrilled to discover a statue of him in Alumni Hall, natch.

The Quad.

Sam has now declared himself a future Miami Redhawk.

A visit to Greg's hometown is never complete without a stop at the one-and-only Skyline Chili. We recommend the three-way, but you can't go wrong with the coneys either.

We parents dealt with quite a bit of complaining from one particular child throughout our visit. It would have tried the patience of Mother Theresa herself. And so it was no small relief when we emerged from Skyline, full-bellied and blinking in the sun, to discover a grassy square and running fountains. Though we did not have any spare clothes in the trunk, we let them jump and play to their hearts' content. So relieved were we that the grumpy Gus among us had finally raised the white flag in exhausted defeat, we didn't dare stand in the way of their joyful antics.

And Charlie rode home in his undies.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Rainy Day at the Farm

We spent Saturday at what my sister affectionately calls "the Farm," their property about an hour and a half north of Pittsburgh. They don't actually have animals, nor crops, nor tractors, nor barns, but they're surrounded by them so they adopted the name. We had two special boys to celebrate. Last year my darling nephew and the resident baby of our family, Benjamin David, was born on Charlie's birthday. My sis and I think it's pretty special that out of all 365 days in a year, God ordained that our baby boys would both be born on June 6th. As such, we have years of joyful family celebrations to look forward to now as the rainy Pittsburgh spring gives way to summer and our boys blow out ever more candles on their cakes.

                          There's a whole lotta love among these brothers, sisters, and cousins.

It poured all day but that did not stop our fun!

Sweet Baby Ben...

Happy First Birthday sweet boy!

Our favorite superhero blew out four candles! We love him so.

The best way to get anywhere? The back of Uncle Paul's pickup.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Homeward Bound

                      "With God all things are possible."
                                -Matthew 19:26

Friday, May 8, 2015

Thoughts on Friendship

Dear Chloe, Max, Sam, and Charlie,

I wanted to write you a note tonight. I felt it was particularly important. I didn't want tomorrow to come without me writing these words to you, in the hope that someday you will read them for yourself.  I want you to know that friendship is showing up for people even when it's not convenient. It's saying yes when it would be much easier to say no. It's laying down your so-called rights to "boundaries" (by far one of the most overused, misused words in the modern Christian vernacular) to prioritize the feelings and needs of others before your own. Only then can God begin to form real, honest community among you. And I've learned that if you don't feel that you have it, look in a mirror. The problem isn't the people around you. The problem is you.

"To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable."
                    C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


I have unsettling news to report. Our littlest, the baby of our brood, has horrible allergies. It affects every part of our life, lately, and certainly every meal. He is allergic to chicken, to beef, to peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and to bananas. He is allergic to yogurt, to unsugared cereals, to almost all fruits, and to water. He is severely allergic to vegetables in every form. Chopped, diced, steamed, baked, green, yellow, or orange... allergic to them all. But before you despair on our behalf, take heart. There are foods he is not allergic to, foods he can enjoy in liberal quantities. They include, but are not limited to, jelly beans, chicken nuggets (please note, only the really cheap crappy kind that contain breading and chicken "parts"), frozen waffles, french fries (the less potato, the better), honey nut cheerios, chocolate chip cookies, and ice cream in all forms. 

Thank goodness. At least the poor kid won't starve to death.

Three is the cutest age, especially when you've already survived it three other times. I hope I never forget this little phase, in which every time I hand him a plate of something remotely healthy, he shakes his head solemnly, hands it back to me with wide blue eyes, and says, "Mama, I'm allergic to that."