Sunday, February 28, 2010

Men are Nurturers

I think all men are nurturers.  It's ingrained in them.  They want to be the man and provide, but also make their woman happy.  My three guys nursed me back to health yesterday.

I woke up with intense sinus pressure.  Intense!  On top of that, my whole body ached and I was moving at the speed of about 1 mile per hour (instead of my usual 50 mph). 

My boys removed my shoes and gave me a "massage".  I say "massage" because 3 year old boys don't apply much pressure.  But, it was the thought.  I told them I just wanted to lay down on the couch to watch them play.  They ran to their room and got their blankets off their beds and covered me up.  Then, they both gave me their teddies.  My boys are VERY close to their teddies, so this was huge for them. 

After awhile, I needed more medicine.  The boys brought me the meds and a cup of water.  Josh stuck around to play with my hair for a little.  Both of them talked to me in this sweet, cute mothering voice.  Josh told me, "Mommy, don't worry.  We take care of you."  And they did.

All this while Joe was Superdad.  He cleaned the entire house.  I mean, scrubbing toilets, mopping, laundry.  He even went grocery shopping and then made dinner.  After that, he cleaned up the dishes. 

No one likes getting sick, but sometimes it's good.  It's good to see your "men" take on the nurturing role.  I am blessed to have the three of them.

It is now the next morning, and I can finally blow my nose.  There is nothing worse than all that pressure and not being able to blow it out.  My aches are almost all gone and I'm moving at about half speed.  Thank you for your prayers.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

My Baby

I think every mom gets nostalgic around her childrens' birthdays.  At least, I do.  Whereas Jack's birth was peaceful and a thing of beauty, Josh's birth was a lot more comical.

Of course, a birth story really starts about 9 months prior.  We had felt God leading us to move to Arizona.  Our home in CA sold in 9 days, with multiple offers (unheard of nowadays).  We both got jobs for the local school district.  We bought a home that was slightly bigger than we needed.  Or so we thought.

The move was monumental and hilarious in it's own right, but this is about Joshua.  The day after we moved, we found out we were expecting.  The day after, y'all.  The day after we had uprooted ourselves, moved to a town (and state!) where we knew no one!  Oh yeah, and Jack was 6 months old.  To say that I wasn't overjoyed would be an understatement.  Yet, as Joshua grew in my womb, my love for him grew as well. 

Five days after my maternity leave began, I woke up feeling "strange".  I really can't explain this feeling, but it's just "different".  I was still 18 days away from my due date, so I was confused.  Nonetheless, I called Jack's babysitter and asked if I could bring him over, just in case. 

First off, Joe kept telling me that I had to have this baby on a weekend, because he didn't have any sick leave accumlated yet. Am I good, or am I good? The whole house was sick the previous 3 day weekend, so that was out. Then Joe was in Globe (90 minutes away) Tuesday and Wednesday for more workshops. Thursday, he was in Pinetop, but still working. They got Friday off because they had worked 12 hour days in the workshops. The whole time, Joe was telling me that it can't be it because he has not finished the kitchen remodel. Sounded a lot like when he told me that I couldn't be in labor with Jack on Christmas Eve because he wasn't done Christmas shopping yet. uh huh, men.

So, I went with him to Home Depot and thought that walking might be good for me. Yeah. My contractions were now 5 minutes apart instead of 15. Joe took me home, but went right back to rent the cement saw. He said he was gonna get this concrete done before the baby comes. The doctors (on the phone) told me that it was Braxton Hicks. It wasn't Braxton Hicks.

At home, I was in my sanctuary, listening to my relaxing music, doing my relaxation breathing, and there was Joe: sawing a hole in the concrete slab, so that I can have electricity on my new island. Then he discovered that sawing concrete produces a lot of dust. A LOT of dust!  He proceeded to return the saw, buy a mop, mop the entire house, dust the entire house, and vacuum the area rugs.

I told him to get packed for the hospital, that we needed to leave. He threw a load of laundry into the machine. He took a 20 minute shower. He threw the laundry into the dryer. Then he dressed like he was going to church. All this time I'm up to about 4 to 5 minutes apart.  Could we hurry up a little?

When we got to the hospital, they were packed. They didn't have any available rooms. So, I labored in the hallway a little. Some doctors standing there talking asked Joe if I was ok. He said, "oh, she's having one of those contractions". Thanks babe.

Well, I got the "closet". This room was so small, it barely had room for my bed, a chair for Joe, and some monitors. They affectionately call it the "closet". Seriously though, closets are bigger. It was like a Seinfeld episode. Everytime someone would walk in, the other people would scrunch down by the bed. Then another person would come in, and everyone would scrunch some more. Joe, being so chivalrous, made some room by going to get pizza. He was hungry. Nevermind that maybe I was hungry, thirsty, IN LABOR!

Then Joe decided he HAD to buy new shoes. Right then. 6:00 PM on a Friday, in the mountains. Well, it did create room in the "closet". When they checked me I was only a 3. I had been a 3 at the doctor's earlier that week. They said that I could stay an hour, but then I might need to go home because they were full. An hour later I was at a 4. They said that I really should be at a 6. Joe and I looked at each other and said, "we can do that". So, instead of drugs, which they offered, we walked the hallways. Word to the wise, walking really works. We stopped every now and then to have a contraction, but we did good. Then Joe saw a person he had worked with on the rez. They talked. I contracted. They talked some more. I contracted some more.

Finally we went back to my "closet". I was a 6! Good, now I get a real room. As they were cleaning the real room, I was just going through it hard. My relaxation wasn't helping taking the edge off. My contractions were 90 seconds apart with 60 second contractions. And they hurt! I asked for Staydol to help ease the pain. They checked me. I was now a 7. Too late for Staydol, but I could have an epidural.

What the heck. I did it natural the first time, I couldn't keep up with the pain this time, give me the drugs. The doctor can't put the needle in during a contraction. But the contractions were so close. By the time he got the needle in and the drugs in, my water broke and I was at 10. I could still feel the contractions because the drugs hadn't kicked in yet. Our babysitter walked in at about this point.  As she was getting her camera all set up (what can I say, we were close), Joe leans over and "whispers" real loud, "it looks like it hurts.  Does it hurt?"  Um..... yes.  A few contractions later (oh, and ladies, I'm not one of those screaming types.  I labor quietly, praying, visualizing, meditating, etc) Joe leans over and "whispers" again to the babysitter, "it looks painful.  Is it painful?"  Um, how can I say this..........YES!!!!!!!!!!  Joe cracks me up.

Finally I got to push.  Third push, Joshua Robert. Just like that. So, when the nurses tell you that you might have to go home and you are only a 3. Don't listen to them. Listen to your body. Because I went from a 3 to done in 3 hours. And listen to your body if it feels "strange". 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

my son, her Son

Joshua fell by accident.

Jesus was innocent.

The edge of the fireplace split his forehead open.

The crown of thorns ripped His forehead.  The whips slashed His back.  The nails punctured His hands and feet.  The sword pierced His side.

I rushed him to the hospital.

He was placed in a tomb.

Stitches were put on him.

Grave clothes were put on Him.

I sat and watched.

She sat and watched.

Days later, I placed ointment on his forehead.

Days later, they took spices.

Becoming a mother has given me a new perspective on Jesus.  When my boys were born, I used to think about what they would be like when they grew up.  I still do.  But, Mary already knew.  As she stroked His newborn feet, did she think of the cross?  When her hand held His, did she think of the nails?  What did she think when the Magi gave her myrrh, a spice for someone who was going to die? 

Although Jesus was not my son, He is my Savior.  My sins put Him on the cross.  But because He loves me so, He knew this was the only perfect sacrifice. 

Refined by the Fire

Diamonds come from the melting of pre-existing rocks in the Earth's upper mantle. So, basically, diamonds are just shiny rocks. Rocks, my friends. The same rocks that we sweep off our floors, vacuum up from our car mats, and hose off our driveways. Yet, there is something so beautiful about a diamond. Shiny. Transparent. Usually attached to gold. And always attached to a hefty price.

Nine years ago, Joe gave me some rocks. They are shiny. They are transparent. They are attached to gold. And, yes, they were spendy. They are earrings.

I was wearing the earrings the morning that Joe proposed. I was wearing those earrings at our wedding. I wore those earrings during the births of both of our boys. In fact, I have never taken them out. And, I don't plan to. Because diamonds come from melting rock.

Have you ever tried to melt a rock? I haven't but I googled it and it takes anywhere from 600 to 1,000 degrees Celsius. That's hotter than Phoenix in the summer!

That reminds me of something else made genuine through fire...."In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed." 1Peter 1:6-7

I am being refined by the fire!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Susan Day

Today was Susan Day.  It should be on every calendar.  At least, it's on mine. 

Lately, Susan got a little lost.  She nursed her husband back to health after a "life-threatening" bout with the stomach flu.  "Life threatening" if you ask him.  As if no one has ever vomited before.  As if I didn't vomit for 9 months while pregnant with Joshua.  None-the-less, I nursed him back to health.

Susan got lost while staying awake for 3 days, while Jack was in the hospital.  I do think I dozed off twice at night, but I was quickly awakened by monitors beeping and alarms sounding.

Susan got lost teaching her 29 students; one of which has been cutting himself and requires 100% supervision.  She also has lugged over $400 in pennies to get counted.  $400 y'all!  In pennies! 

So, I called in "Susan" to work today.  Let me explain how to properly celebrate Susan Day.

You wake up and leisurely get ready.  There's no rush.  It's not like you are going to work or anything. 

You call the babysitter to come and watch the kids for the day.

You get a Starbucks, whip cream included.

You sip your Starbucks while getting a pedicure.  The nicest part of this is that you don't have to share your Starbucks with anyone.

You go clothes shopping.  By yourself.  You don't have to look through the circular racks to find your children.  You don't have to worry about your children looking under the doors in the dressing room.  You don't have to worry about your kids saying something embarassing while you are trying on outfits.  You don't have to worry about your 2 year old son putting on the high-heel shoes that are on display and parading around the store.

You go to lunch with your husband.  And you talk to your husband.  You don't have to worry about bringing crayons.  You don't have to worry about booster seats.  You don't have to worry about a diaper bag.  And you don't have to cut anyone's food for them.

Then, you go to Wal-Mart.  Again, by yourself.  You browse every aisle, because... well... because you can.  You don't have to push a 65 pound shopping cart (that's the weight before you even put any food in it). 

Finally, you go home and get big hugs and kisses from your kids and remember exactly why you get up every night to cover them up, spend your last dollar for a Hot Wheel car, and pray endlessly about their futures.  I love being Susan.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Jack's Directorial Debut

*We videotaped the whole thing, but it's not working right now*

Jack wanted to build a castle.

He was a little upset we didn't have a flag.  But, we did have a lion.

Then, Jack told Josh to get Dino.

Jack yelled, "Aaaaaaaaaaaaand action!"


The castle now lies dormant in ruins. 

This film has been rated "J" for Jack and Josh. 
Cast of Characters:
King played by Lion
Fire-breathing Dragon played by Dino

Animatronic Controller: Joshua
Director: Jack
Photographer: Jack

*I will keep working on the video to see why it doesn't work. I'll post it when it does.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

My Joy

I have 3 joys in my life.  My Savior, my son Jack, and my son Joshua.  My joy is multiplied when the three come together.  "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth".

Whenever we are driving, we listen to worship music.  They hear the lyrics and are beginning to sing along with me.

This morning, Joshua walked up to me and sang "You are my joy, You are my joy, You are my joy, You are my .... joy!"  I am so proud of him because he still sings "Oh, Happiness" as "Oh, Happy Mess".

As I was typing this, Joshua just sang it again, but this time, he changed the lyrics to "I am a joy, I am a joy, I am a joy, I am a!"

I prayed before they were born that they would be strong men of God and possibly be worship leaders.  Looks promising.


1 Corinthians 13

The Greatest Gift
 1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13, New King James Version)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Biggest Loser Contest Update

Joe and I are having a weight contest.  I needed to lose 12 pounds and he needed to gain at least 12.  I'm not going to be coy anymore.  I was 132 and he had dropped to 148.  There, now you know.

Week 1: Susan lost 2 pounds.  Joe lost 2 pounds.

Week 2:  Susan lost 1 pound.  Joe lost 1 pound.  (If you haven't noticed, Joe is moving in the wrong direction here).

Week 3:  Susan lost 4 pounds!  That puts me at 125.  I was 125 when I got pregnant with Jack 5 years ago!  Whooooo hooooo!  Funny thing is, I still have the hips.  That's alright, curves are womanly.

Now for Joe's good news:  Joe gained 5 pounds!  He has gained back all that he lost recently and put on 2 more.  He needs to bulk up before the Kidney Doctor will put him on chemo meds (the next step in his regimen). 

I am happy for both of us and can't wait to spend that $100 on new clothes, 'cuz "mama needs a new pair of shoes", and pants, and shirts, and socks, and of course a PURSE!  Hello?!  I better win this thing.  I just looked in my closet and noticed that I have clothes from when I started teaching 7 years ago!  I have clothes from Student Teaching!  I have clothes from college (reeek, reeeek, reeek *creepy Psycho music)!!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Whiteriver Wiki

I have a wiki.  I know, you are thinking, "what is a wiki?"  "Is it a disease?"  "How do I know if I have a wiki?"

A wiki is a website, like wikipedia.  I have it set up for my classroom.  I only know of one other teacher with a wiki, so I have no one to bounce ideas off of.  No one to ... (ahem) ... copy. 

Please look at my wiki.  Click on the links.  Let me know what works.  What doesn't.  What I should include.  What I should get rid of.  Also, if you know of any other educational wikis, include a link. 

My Virtual Classroom

Monday, February 1, 2010

Facial Scars are Champ!

I really like our hospital and ER staff.  I must.  I have spent so much time there lately. 

In December, Joe went to the ER when he had been vomiting for 5 days and was dehydrated.

In January, Jack went to the ER for being dehydrated (so I thought) and ended up staying from Wednesday to Saturday for RSV with Bronchiolitis. 

February First, Joshua went to the ER.  Six stitches. 

We have lived in this house for 3 1/2 years.  We have a big, beautiful wood burning stove that heats our home.  It is perched on a gorgeous rock hearth that extends the entire length and heighth of the wall.  Joe has said a thousand times, "No running!  Someone is going to fall and split their head open!"  A thousand times.

Tonight, I was sitting on the couch watching a highly anticipated movie.  Jack was in his room playing with Legos.  Joshua was running up and down the hallway.  Then, Josh did this little dance-spin move (remember, Rodriguez ROCK Stars) and landed head first on the corner of the rock hearth.  BAMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!

I ran him to the bathroom to control the bleeding and survey the damage.  I could see skull.  Y'all, moms were never designed to see the interior of their children's bodies.  Stitches for sure.

I scooped him up and buckled him in to his carseat.  Luckily, the hospital is exactly 3 minutes away.  Yes, I've timed it.  Luckily, also, I hadn't taken off my nice clothes yet, taken out my contacts, washed the make-up off my face.  I always think of doing that at an early hour, so I can relax.  But, I always think to myself, what if something happens and I have to run to the hospital.  Folks, it's a monthly reality at this house.

I am so grateful that there was NO ONE in the waiting room.  We walked right in to triage and then right into a suite.  Oops, I mean hospital room.  Within one hour, we were on our way home.  Since the cut was so deep, it required one internal stitch and then five external stitches. 

When we got home, Jack wanted to see the stitches.  I explained them to him (he doesn't even remember his own stitches, thankfully).  I said that the doctor had to sew Joshie's skin up.  Jack said, "like a sewing machine?"  Kinda.

So, do ya think that Josh learned his lesson?  Do you think he walked cautiously into the house?  No.  He ran into the house to show off to his brother and then five minutes later, he was running down the hall again.  Kids!

Growing up, I always thought Indiana Jones was so cool because he had that scar on his face.  Well, Jack has the scar on his eyebrow from where he got hit by a wooden swing at the age of 1 1/2.  Now, Joshua has a scar on his forehead from the rock hearth, just weeks before turning 3.  My boys will be so champ!  Now, if we could only think up some exciting stories about how they got their scars...............

where Glory meets my suffering