Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I read this this morning and it really was profound to me:
Please know that when I take up my cross every day I am not talking about my wheelchair. My wheelchair is not my cross to bear. Neither is your cane or walker your cross. Neither is your dead-end job or your irksome in-laws. Your cross to bear is not your migraine headaches, not your sinus infection, not your stiff joints. That in not your cross to bear. My cross is not my my wheelchair; it is my attitude. Joni Eareckson Tada Hope ... the Best of Things

While I was on a conference call at the park.  What I love working from home.  This little nugget actually kept his shoes on today.  

Sunday, July 28, 2013

First Backpack Ride

Today Hudson and I took a walk around the neighborhood.  Him via backpack.  I haven't carried a kid in a backpack in a long time and, man, it is much more difficult this time around.  I think it's because Hudson is chunkier than Henry was at his age.  That's what I am telling myself :).

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Our Day at the Zoo

We went to the zoo on July 22, my father's birthday and the day before Tim's. Tim and Henry road a camel.  Myriah and I trucked through the zoo in the heat ;).

Hudson's first carousel ride.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Fall Weather

The past couple of days the weather has been incredible.  Usually the summer in Maryland is just dreadful to me.  I used to like it when I was younger but there is something about intense heat and humidity that I don't like anymore.  I think it was triggered around my brother's death and I associate both with that time.  Anyway, the weather has been so nice.  It is definitely a gift from God.  I walked out of the door yesterday morning to take the trash out and when expecting to be hit with a wall of heat, it actually was cool.

So tonight we were feeling rather adventurous as parents... well, maybe that was I and I convinced Dave it would work out.  Dave got a coupon for Famous Dave's from his coworker and we were going to get take out.  I thought it would be fun to have a family dinner out.  I don't know how fun it was, but we made it through.  They were particularly wild tonight.  At least they weren't screaming their lungs out.  After we were on our way home, I remembered this playground I had always wanted to take Henry to but it hadn't work out yet.  It is incredible!  The best playground ever.

It was built in honor of a six year old girl who was killed by a drunk driver when crossing the street with her family.  Very sad story.  But something incredible came out of a tragedy that is touching the lives of many families.

Henry had a blast and already informed us we will be going back tomorrow night.  Hudson loved it too.  Very magical place for little kids.

Hudson's First Birthday Stolen from Cuzzy

Annie took these photos on her visit.  It was SO nice to see her since it's been two years!!!!!!!!!!!

Afternoon with the Africans

The boys and I had a fun afternoon with our African neighbors.  I had a lovely time interviewing Sylvia (the wife/mother) and her friend ChiChi who was visiting.  They were eating traditional African food which they eat with their hands.  It's a dough made from oats and wheat that they roll around in their hands and then dip into a soup made from goat and dried fish.  I have to say that it didn't look that appetizing to this bratty American.  I totally would have tried it though if it didn't have wheat.

I took this photo off the web - what the soup looked like.

This is what the ball of dough looks like.

Sylvia and I are now fast friends.  She told me she just knew I wasn't from Baltimore because I was too nice.  Then when she and her friend found out I was from Maine they ABSOLUTELY loved me.  They told me that Mainers have the biggest hearts.  I loved asking them their opinion on everything.  

They told me it's very difficult to raise children in America because back home in Nigeria everyone helps everyone.  In America you do it alone.  

They are building a home back in Nigeria and it's their heart to return.  They showed me all of their photos.  Many of Kenneth's dad's burial which was interesting and very different than most Americans.  We don't typically take photos of dead people and especially not with other living folks gathered around them.  

They go to an African Christian church and have invited me.  I think I would love to check it out .... but those Africans are long winded, man.  They don't just go to church, they go to church ALL day.  May be worth a looksee though.  We shall see.

PS They know we call them the Africans :)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

So Where You From?

**** Warning ****  Politically Incorrect Henry Story

Henry is crazy funny.  Crazy and funny.  Full of energy.  Loves life and LOVES people.  Loves is an understatement.

A Nigerian family bought a house down the street last year.  We have seen them off and on but recently have become friends.  You have to understand that we live in a predominantly African American city but our particular neighborhood is predominantly white.

So we met the family and they are wonderful and we have been to their house and they have been to ours.  The kids are amazingly well behaved (way better than mine haha) and the parents are just wonderful believers in the Lord.  Henry LOVES them.  LOVES.  Like begs to be dropped off at their house.  He also has taken to calling them the Africans because I guess we were calling them that.  I am trying to get him to just call them by their names and not yell, "Hey, Africans!"  Tonight we walked by and he yelled to the grandmother who doesn't speak English that he wanted to play with her kids.  If we are outside and he hears kids, he'll start freaking out telling me the neighbors are home and demands to go see them.

So, tonight we are walking through our small neighborhood like we do almost every night.  We come around a corner on our way home and there is an African American mother and young daughter just getting home and getting out of their car.  Henry sees them from a distance and immediately tells us he wants to go say hi to them.  So we all stroll up and say hi to them as they are making their way to their door.  Then as we start walking away Henry says, "Hey, where you from?  Africa or something?"  It was very smart and cute and curious and just plain kid.... but slightly embarrassing to the parents who could just smile and pretend like we didn't hear it.  Not like he isn't right.  It's just that there is so much racial sensitivity these days, you just never know what's going to hurt people's feelings.


I think the older we get the more difficult it can become to rest because our worries seem to increase.  Not talking about not working or not taking care of kids, but resting in the arms of God.  I heard this amazing definition of poneros evil today.  I wish I can remember it.  But it had something to do with our doing instead of being and just resting in the plan of God.  Our just-get-it-done attitude can be down right evil.  The Finished Work of Jesus seats us far above everything.  A great place to rest.  When we take our hands off, it gives God room to put His hands on.  Trust.  Believe.  Rest.  Very encouraging and very convicting at the same time.  So glad my husband is such a great teacher and believer of the finished work.  It's a good match for this gitter done girl!

We had a fun day at the zoo with Rye and Tim the other day.  I have been posting more on Facebook because it seems so much easier and fast and you get instant gratification!  Poor excuses.

Today we went to Trader Joe's and were supposed to go to a play date with this Meet Up group I am a part of.  We were actually supposed to go to Mom's Bible Study as well but Henry woke up late and we ended up blowing off our play date too.  I am trying to meet other moms in the community outside the routine things I do.

Instead... we went to the park.  The local Y summer program was there and Hudson was a star.  The kids followed him around, several asked if they could be his baby sitter and one set of twins begged, I mean BEGGED us to come over to their house tonight.  They gave me their address and phone number.  I am sure their mom would be thrilled about that.

Then we went to the library and got some new books and I found Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Henry has been watching it in the other room while Hudson takes a nap and I work.  He has been laughing his head off.  I have such good memories of watching that movie but don't remember it!  Haha.

We also fed the geese and ducks at a local man made pond.  I thought I saw a frog staring at us (everyone who know me knows how thrilled I was), but it was a turtle.  I had just told Henry that we wouldn't see a turtle (he and Dave have been watching Turtle Man on TV).  Then, of course, we find the one turtle that LOVES bread and runs pretty fast after it up onto the shore towards us.  I started to be a little scared of the turtle.  I played it cool and thought it was pretty cool while Henry stood on high ground to avoid being eaten and killed by the 8 inch turtle.  Was a pretty comical situation.  Another mother came along and Henry told her our story and she assured us that turtles are scared etc.  Then she saw this turtle and said she understood why Henry was on top of a rock.

Here are our photos from the day: