Friday, April 30, 2010

Marathon: Part 3

The finish line was one of the highlights of my life. This may or may not indicate that I have no life. Nonetheless it was awesome.

It never dawned on me that I might cry. But at mile 25 as I rounded the corner and saw the crowds and heard the cheers I was overcome with some kind of euphoric emotion. I warned Jesus (aka Beau) to just ignore me if I started crying. I knew I couldn’t explain it and I preferred my group just pretend it wasn’t happening.
The end was great, but all I could think about was finding my family. I knew they were there but I couldn’t see them as I crossed and I couldn’t find them anywhere.

I finally spotted Judi and the kids. Mia had made the best sign ever! I am pretty sure she was more proud of the sign then she was of me – which is as it should be. Finally I saw my man and I was immediately confused. What was the ginormous bag he was carrying?

I'll admit my first thought was, "Please tell me that's not a man-purse."

I realize lots of freaks come out to things like this but I didn’t want my husband to be one of them. This was my day after all.

After another glance I realized that it wasn’t a European carry-all, it was a camera bag. A really nice camera bag. And what was that huge, gorgeous, awesome thing around his neck? It looked like a camera. A real camera. The kind of camera I have dreamed of and longed for for years now.

I thought it odd that he might borrow someone’s really nice camera to take to the finish line but maybe he was so proud of me that he couldn’t help himself.

I was so proud of me that I had no shame, maybe he was too.

So I asked him, “Who’s camera did you borrow?”

“It’s yours,“ he said, “Congratulations. I’m so proud of you.”

And this was my exact reaction, with little bits of a cheeseburger in my mouth and all:
And then I kind of forgot about my own awesomeness.

I kept thinking about how blessed I am to be married to this man who loves me, supports me, tolerates me, raises our children with me, prays with me, indulges me, surprises me and empowers me.I felt so complete.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Marathon: Part 2

And then God sent me a little gift, in the form of a man.  How many times have I found myself saying that?

Around mile 20 our group caught up with Beau Bailey, an acquaintance of mine who happened to marry one of my favorite students of all time. But that’s completely beside the point. Anyway, Beau was running the third leg of the relay and decided on a whim to go ahead and finish the entire race.  I’m no good at math so I can’t tell you how many miles that is, but it’s a lot, especially for someone that never ran more than four miles before race day.  Now that I think about that it makes me kind of hate him.


When Beau first caught up with us I wasn’t sure I liked him.  He was chipper.  I don’t do chipper.  He was making small talk.  I don’t do small talk. 

 I do sarcasm.  I do bad attitudes.  I occasionally do the “Shut-up and don’t talk to me while I’m running” thing.  My wonderful running partners understand this and don’t hold it against me the next day, or if they do, they at least have the courtesy to not tell me about it.

Apparently I also do floppy arms:

 But this guy didn’t know me and I didn’t think I had the energy to be kind and courteous to an acquaintance at this point. 

But alas, he ended up being just the thing I needed at mile 23 when I realized I still had thirty more minutes to run and about five more minutes of stamina. 

Beau was positive.  Beau was encouraging.  Beau told me how awesome it was that I had just run 23 miles and that he knew I could run three more.  Beau pointed out where the finish line was so I could focus on it.  Beau also encouraged perfect strangers that were around us.  

Beau was like the Jesus of the final stretch.  We were drawn to his message and we followed him.

(Okay, that last paragraph was a little overdramatic, but you get the point.)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Marathon: Part 1

Dear Children,

I am documenting this day in much detail so that someday when I am a little white-haired old woman and I am trying to recount this day to my great-grandchildren you can keep me on track and remind me that it wasn’t all uphill and I wasn’t barefoot.



I never really got too nervous about the marathon.  I never really got too excited either.  I prayed hard and tried not to think too much about it.  I just wanted to treat it like any other run, except for the fact that I denied myself my very lifeblood – diet coke - for the entire week leading up to it.

I loved running the first 10 miles because they were so exciting and my adrenalin was pumping.  I pretended like every sign I saw was just for me. 

When a group of family members held up a huge banner that said, “We love you, Emily.”  I just said to myself, “Thanks, I love you too.” 

I was drunk on my own awesomeness. 

Miles 13 through 18 were a little lonely and my awesomeness was fading fast. There weren’t very many people on the lake and my knees started to feel like there were daggers going through them.  I threw back four advil and asked God to make the pain bearable.

 Miles 19 trough 23 were better and worse.  The pain in the lower half of my body was a little worse but I refocused myself mentally. 

I started looking up to the sky and praying, “Lord, give me another two minutes….Lord, thank you for giving me the strength to take this step….Lord, thank you for making this weather perfect...Lord, thank-you for allowing me this opportunity...Lord, keep me focused...” 

For a while I tried to pretend that the race was labor and that each two-minute run was a contraction. 

“Just get through the contraction and then you can rest for a minute before the next one starts,” I would tell myself. 

Then I remembered I had two scheduled c-sections and I didn’t have the first clue about labor.

At mile 23 I called Andy and I could hear the announcer and the music and the excitement at the finish line.  I knew he and the kids were there.  That’s all I needed to hear. 

“I’ll be there in 30 minutes,” I told him, sounding confident.  

Until it hit me that thirty minutes is a long time.  

I can prepare an entire meal in less than 30 minutes.  I can shower and get somewhat presentable in less than 30 minutes.  I brought two children into the world in less than 30 minutes and those same children can destroy my entire house in less than thirty minutes. 

All of the sudden thirty minutes felt like an eternity.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Nothing of significance

One Kitten

plus one ornery brother

equals Cat Fight.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

An Exegesis. Well, not technically but I like that word so I'm using it.

There is something in me that needs to come out. Believe me, I’m just as confused by this statement as you are (or at least as my husband is). It’s weird.  I can’t explain it.  But it’s as real to me as life and breath and children and food.  

The only problem is I can’t put my finger on it.
It’s this creative feeling that I can’t put into words yet it drives me to write drafts that I will never post and spend hours dreaming that I am in a field of flowers with an easel and a huge canvas creating a masterpiece that would make Monet or Renoir weep in admiration and appreciation.
This deep tugging feeling is also feeding my latest obsession to move to the country and grow a huge garden and milk cows and run in fields of clover.  Never mind I haven’t the foggiest clue about gardens, or cows or clover.
Lately I’ve been brought to tears by beautiful essays that I’ve read on blogs or cute little pieces of inspirational art on Etsy.  
And no, I’m not pregnant.  Crazy? Maybe.  Pregnant? Not a chance.
And then it hit me: This must be the Holy Spirit because if it’s not then I’m a narcissistic wannabee hippie.
has to be the Holy Spirit.
So for now I will pray, and study, and wait, and listen, and hope, and anticipate.
And today, with the help of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit I will run my first marathon.  
It’s a step in my journey to satisfy this weird urge and longing that I can’t quite figure out but am thankful for all the same.  I’m thankful because it has given me the courage to train for this day and I know (okay, I hope and pray) it will give me the courage to finish.
So, here’s to the Holy Spirit and the work the Lord is doing in my life.  I am open to whatever the Lord brings.  It has taken me over a year to have the nerve to type this sentence and I type it with trembling fingers but it’s time:
I am yours, Lord. Use me.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Will somebody please get this kid some dress up clothes?

He's doing his best with what he has to work with
but it's hard to be taken seriously as a pretend professional athlete
or Buzz Lightyear racing on his tricycle to save Woody from his evil big sister
when he's dressed like this.
Come on, help a brother out.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Well, this is just great.

So Mia is obsessed with Satan.

I didn't exactly see this one coming.

Although I haven't been adequately prepared for anything so far when it comes to parenting so I don't know why I am surprised.

This is how it went down:
Mia: So I was talking to Satan last night and I was asking him why he won't just be good. I told him if he would just be good I would worship him too.

Me: Can you please repeat that word for word so I can blog about this later?
Me: Huh?

Mia: Mom, I just wish Satan would be good so I could worship him too.

Me: some inaudible rambling about how Satan doesn't have any love in his cold, dark heart so don't waste your time trying to worship him because that really creeps Mommy out.

Or something to that effect.

Mia: I think I know what Satan looks like.

Me: Huh?

Mia: He has really, really mean eyebrows.

Me: I don't think so, Babe.

Mia: How do you know?

Me: I don't, but I just really don't want you saying that to anyone else. It may be taken the wrong way.

Mia: Why?

Me: Because God made lots of people with very defined eyebrows and they love Jesus and are definitely not satan.

Mia: Then why did he give them mean eyebrows?

Me: I think I hear Bode in your room trying to steal your princess dolls.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sick Day

Maybe tomorrow...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Thursday, April 15, 2010

It's 9:45 PM...

...and Bode is still screaming from his bedroom. Mia is wide awake in the living room munching on cantaloupe and watching Ace of Cakes and Andy is out getting milk.  

Just a typical Thursday night in suburbia.

(Have I mentioned my children require half the sleep I do?  Naps are out of the question and Mia hasn't fallen asleep before 11 PM since she was three.  I've probably been too exhausted to remember to mention this.)

Doesn't everyone play blocks in white gloves?

This is Mia ever so patiently and kindly requesting that I might consider laying off the picture taking if I so desire.

Monday, April 12, 2010


Reasons I've never been on a marriage retreat:
  • getting to know you games
  • being forced to stare into my husbands eyes and say words of affirmation
  • a recurring nightmare i've had where we renew our vows in some cheesy mass ceremony
  • I'm afraid of anything resembling a campground
  • general awkwardness
Reasons I need to go on marriage retreats:
  • I'm married
  • I'm human
  • My husband's human
Reasons I had a great time this weekend on the JSO Marriage Retreat:
  • no getting to know you games
  • no staring in to my husbands eyes saying words of affirmation
  • no vow renewal ceremony
  • no camping
  • no awkwardness
(and good friends, of course)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

If you don't want to hear about how my kid's a genius then this post isn't for you.

Come to think of it, this entire blog may not be for you.

My eldest child loves herself a project.
The bigger and more complicated the better.
So for Easter dinner I gave her the charge of preparing dessert and this is what she decided to make.
She spent hours painting each family members pot to represent them. She painted a "fancy, fashion woman" on my sister's pot and gave her huge knockers. I had to pretend I was having an allergy induced coughing fit when I saw it.
She doesn't take to laughter very well when she is in her creative zone.
My kitchen was unrecognizable when she finished these babies but it was so worth it.

Although Andy did almost cut his thumb off on the food processor blade so he may not have thought it was worth it.

But it was, trust me.

They happened to be delicious.
But more importantly, she was so proud of herself, as was I.

And if this doesn't scream genius, I don't know what does.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Happy Birthday, Darling Boy

You have survived your first year of Bode drinking your bottles, Mia dragging you around by your head, and your Aunt Summer not cleaning her floors thus allowing you to eat all kinds of non-edible goodies like leaves and dead ants.  

It's official: What hasn't killed you has made you stronger.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

At least this year I got a picture.

I didn't even attempt this last year, but I at least had my act together enough to pawn the responsibility off to Aubrie this time.
If I had to give one of these babies up to save the world, everyone would burn.
Thank you, God, for doing what I never could.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Tell me that's not the cutest kid (with the biggest noggin') you've ever seen.

You wouldn't believe that just yesterday it took four time outs and 45 minutes of screaming to get him to put on his shoes,
or that he flooded my bathroom and kitchen floors,
or took one bite out of four different apples,
adamantly refused a nap,
and obviously would have nothing to do with letting Katie cut his hair.
But darn it if that smirky little smile doesn't get me every time.