Saturday, September 26, 2009

Just a Few More Days...

I have not forgotten about you, my loyal readers! I am on a brief break but I am looking forward to returning in about a week (maybe a day or two less).

Thanks for your patience! I will tell you of our adventures sooooooon!

Today I am thankful for my mom.

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Skies are Silent in Wewa

Today, we had sun, which means I was able to make a last minute run to the beach. I wasn't planning on going today but when the sun's rays appeared to be streaming through the windows this morning, Sabian told me to go so, I went.

Minimal sunbathers, multiple birds, and a lone crab. It was a good morning.

The day started with one of my favorite ways to start the day - hanging out with Addie in our bed. We always know when she's really up when we hear her squealing and talking to herself in the morning - she's usually content to hang out on her own for a little while. Then, one of us goes in to get her, and as soon as she sees us, it's like we've been gone a week rather than just a few hours - her smile couldn't get any bigger.

We bring her in our room for a little tickling, some peek-a-boo, and overall general snuggling before the day gets going.

We don't get to begin every day this way, but it sure is nice when we do.

Today I am thankful for these days that start out this way!

P.S. There is a crab in the 3rd photo, he's just hard to see.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Rainy Afternoon=Chocolate Chip Cookies Dunked in Milk

Addie is sleeping. I should be sleeping. Should be.

It's been a busy week, and this is one of those random posts I talked about that I would never post, but it's a rainy afternoon, so here is some rainy randomness.

Oh, and I am also listening to Pandora, which I haven't done in a long time. Now that I have my musical accompaniment,(and some cozy slippers, see below) let us begin.

Typically I would be writing later on today and I would post a picture or two from the beach and write about what I saw today. Well, my optimism was literally squelched this afternoon when I thought it might clear up for me to head for my weekly beach visit. It did not, it has not, and it will not stop raining. We've had some rain all week and we're in for more rain. Feel free to take a dip in Lake Chaney when you get a chance.

We've been having revival services since Sunday night at church, so we've had something going on each night. The services have been good and Addie has done pretty well at sitting through them, although these days we've been sticking to a fairly regular schedule so when it's time to go she is more than ready.

We've also had the opportunity this week to get together with some friends here and there for lunch, which has been nice. It's hard when life gets so busy and we get caught up in doing just what needs to get done, so it was nice to hang out a bit.

I mentioned a couple of posts back that we had started feeding Addie baby food and that the results so far had been less than spectacular. She'd assume her position of biting down on her bottom lip and either as a result of some jumping to and fro by myself or gentle coaxing by Sabian, she would reluctantly part her lips and allow some food to enter. This week we have turned a new page in the book of baby food and Addie is now opening her mouth and gets what she's supposed to do with those oh so yummy squished carrots and ground up bananas.

I am thankful that this process is getting easier. I was a little worried there for a little while. We're still trying to figure out some of the whens and hows to feed her, and I am looking in to how to start making Addie's food, but we seem to be on the right track now.

Addie is also mastering the art of rolling. No longer can we count on her to stay in the same place when on the floor, bed, or other flat or semi-flat surface. It is fun to see how she figures out to get from place to place, but it is also a wake up call! She's also working really hard at sitting up on her own.

Well, I think we're coming to the end of this randomness. As you can see, we've taken quite a few photos of Addie this week, most of which are in "her" chair. I'll share a few more from when Sabian was teaching her to do one of his favorite things - how to scratch his head - and then you can tell when she instead scratched his eye.

Now, it is time to fix dinner. It seems when we have a week when there is something going on most nights at church we end up having to adopt the eating schedule of the 65 and older crowd.

Today I am thankful for a sweet Addie and for the phone call we received today that is just another sign of God's provision.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Cheer Up a Child in India

Some of my favorite church services are those when missionaries are visiting and speaking about their ministries. I love hearing their stories about things that are happening, whether they are foreign missionaries or serving in the United States.

When we were living in Illinois our church had the pleasure of hosting Huldah Buntain, who is an AG missionary to India. She's one I'd heard about throughout the years and if there had to be "famous" missionaries, I would consider her a well-known woman.

Huldah's story is pretty cool. She and her husband, Mark, and their daughter boarded a ship to India in 1954, expecting to spend a year there in ministry. It is 2009, and she is still there, even after her husband passed in 1984. From what I remember, her daughter was just a baby when they boarded that ship and as any of us with kids know, a car trip, let alone a number-of-days-trip to India, is tough stuff.

Today, Calcutta Mercy Ministries is involved with inner city outreach, the ministry feeds 25,000 people daily, and offers the services of a full general hospital, among other ministries.

When Mrs. Buntain was scheduled to speak at our church in Troy, our pastor and his wife were unavailable to host she and her traveling companion when they arrived in St. Louis. Sabian and I were asked to pick them up from the airport, take them to dinner, make sure they were settled in their hotel, and then get them to church in the morning.

Upon their arrival in St. Louis, Mrs. Buntain and her friend arrived safely, but her luggage did not. It was scheduled to arrive on another flight the next morning. But wait...she was to be speaking at church in the morning. What about her toothbrush? PJs? Clothes for church?

From what I recall, we took a detour to Wal-mart and it was decided that I would head back to the airport in the morning, get her suitcase, take it to our house so she could get ready, and then get them to church. That last part wouldn't be too hard considering we lived about 100 yards from the church.

Amazingly, all went as planned and we made it to church on time and ready to hear what Mrs. Buntain had to teach us about the awesome things happening in India. It was such a pleasure to spend that time with her, getting to know her as a person, hearing her testimony, and listening to what their ministry is doing. She was also interested in who we were and what we did at church with the youth group.

I receive the monthly newsletters from her ministry via email and occasionally receive something in the mail. Several months ago something in a mailing caught my eye. I cut it out and posted it on the refrigerator, only to forget about it until it caught my eye again this week.

An arm of their ministry is called Children Need Love. This ministry offers several ways for people like you and me to get involved, including making a trip to India as a volunteer. While that would be an incredible opportunity to take advantage of, I know that many of us aren't able to do it. At least, not at the moment. The great thing is that we can all do something so simple, right from our homes.

Send a card to a child in India. Choose a card from their website, add a personal note, and the card will be printed and given to a child who is receiving free treatment in the Calcutta Mercy Hospital.

It's that simple. It's just like sending another email, updating your status on Facebook, or letting the world know what you're doing on Twitter, only the encouragement you can offer by taking five minutes to do this will mean so much more.

Today I am thankful for people like Mrs. Buntain and her husband. It's pretty cool to see that what they started so many years ago has grown and is doing so much for the people of India. I am also thankful for the opportunity to have spent some time with her.

Monday, September 14, 2009

I Still Want to Win!

Madsen is still conducting a weekly giveaway for their bikes. You can help me out by coming back, daily, weekly, hourly, whatever, and clicking on the banner on the right side of the blog. I know my chances are few, but if I won - well, that would just be it.

Click away!

Today I am thankful for rainy days. I just wish we could have napped this afternoon instead of making a trek to Wal-mart.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Hmm, how to begin?

Today is my dad's birthday. He would have been 79.

My dad passed away on March 9 of this year. Over and over I have thought about writing about him, but I just never knew where to start.

I could start with how I thought it was so cool when he drove his mail truck home during the day. It was fun to get up in there and take a look around. It smelled like mail. Or I could write about how he was a loud talker, which was sometimes embarrassing, but could also be helpful when searching for him in a store.

I could write about how passersby would stop to talk to him about his yard and how he got his flowers and garden to flourish and look so nice. Unfortunately, I did not inherit this green thumb. I could write about how when I was younger, and we went to the mall as a family, I hung out with dad. It was inevitable that we'd make a trip to Sears and, at my urging, KB Toys.

There are so many things I could write about, but mostly I just wanted to remember him today.

Today I am thankful for my dad. Even though we didn't always see eye to eye (and at times that could be often!), and even though he didn't always know how to express it, I know he loved me very much.

Friday, September 11, 2009


Today we went on a picnic. As small as Wewa is, there are quite a few little parks in and around the area. This afternoon we lunched and watched the fish at one park and then headed to another to let Addie try out another swing. This time, we were a wee bit more successful. In fact, Addie really enjoyed it. So much so, now I am on the hunt for one, along with (STILL) a play yard/playpen/pack 'n play.

She started out munching on some pureed peaches, assuming the face she wears when eating baby food, which usually means biting her bottom lip, allowing no spoon or food to enter. Eventually, either after great aerobatic feats by myself, or simply waiting patiently (Sabian), she'll open and eat. This is a work in progress - we started with baby food a couple of weeks ago and are still working on it.

After peaches and a couple of sandwiches for us and much swatting at the love bugs, we accidentally scared away a crane, watched the fish off of the little covered bridge, took some photos, and then made our way to the next park to do some swinging by the lake.

I think I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

I am thankful that my husband suggested we go on a picnic today. It's been a busy week and we're on the threshold of another busy week, so it was good to have this time.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Buggy, Birdy Beach

Addie spent the afternoon with her dad today, hanging out at church while he worked.

I spent the afternoon at my "other" office:

The above photo is actually a personal "stock" photo - it was a rare occasion that I was without my camera today. While we have two cameras, I left mine, which is a little easier to tote around, in the diaper bag with Sabian and Addie in the event that he needed to capture something while they were together.

If I had taken a picture today, you would have seen sunny skies, calm seas, a few pelicans and a smattering of seagulls. There were quite a few birds milling about today and even though I didn't break out my snacks (I know better when they are near), the seagulls are none too shy. Truth be told, I thought about stashing my camera in my bag but thought twice when I figure I'd just be taking the same old picture of the same old view. But, I realized once I was there, that the view does change. The water might be clear one day and cloudy the next. There might be several birds wandering around, like today, or there may be none. I might see a cloudless sky one week, and an abundance of clouds the next. Not to get all smushy and sentimental, or even too introspective, but I realized that I was doing just what I'd said I didn't want to do by living here - I was taking advantage of the luxury I have of living close to the beach.

I realize that aside from the "normal" getaways moms take for a break - shopping, movies, meals out with friends, etc. - I am blessed to be able to have these couple of hours a week to myself, enjoying the serenity of the sand and water, this particular aspect of God's creation. It's hard to not take it for granted. After all, for those of you from home, do you hit up the Arch on a regular basis? It is a simple thing, choosing to not take my camera with me today, but it brought to light that I was doing what I didn't want to do, and as long as I am here, I want to appreciate being able to take these regular visits to the beach.

I digress. As great as the beach is, today it was more than just birds that were my fellow beachcombers - the bugs were also taking advantage of the beautiful day. For the past few years we would save our trips from Illinois to the beach for the fall season, usually October. The beaches are less crowded and the weather is usually pretty unbelievable. It is also at this time of year that one will often become well acquainted with flies - biting flies. More pesky than your common house fly, these flies peck away at your skin, testing your will to outlast them for a tan. They weren't the worst I've seen (or felt) them today, but they did make their presence known. Different people have different theories and methods for keeping them at bay, but to date, I don't know of a surefire recommendation.

To be fair, this is not an accurate depiction of the flies on the beach, but I couldn't help but post this photo because it looks like this guy is wearing sunglasses.

Right after Sabian and I were engaged, way back in 2005, we took a trip to the Destin area and stayed with some of my relatives. It was Sabian's first time to the area and his first introduction to these biting beach wreckers. One day it got so bad that he took his book and stood in the water to read in an effort to escape them. I opted to lay on my towel covered, head to toe, with another towel. Not good for my hopes of a tan. I tried to find the photo I took of him in the water (one of my best to date) and was unable to find it. I did, however, find this one:

That's me on that trip, shielding my skin from their wrath. On a side note I also found these photos from that trip:

Crazy kids. We buried ourselves just for fun, but thinking back on it, I suppose that would be another method for keeping the biting flies away.

Other friends on the beach today were love bugs. Do you know of these? If you've never had the pleasure of coming in contact with them, count yourself lucky. I first experienced them this time last year and have been annoyed ever since.

I suppose it is that time of year again and I am none too happy about it. These bugs are weird. Just check out what Wikipedia says:

"The male and female attach themselves at the rear of the abdomen and remain that way at all times, even in flight. In fact, after mating, the male dies and is dragged around by the female until she lays her eggs."

So here you are, minding your own business, and these bugs are drifting around you, in swarms, mating. Not only that, and I'm just learning this part, there may be some females dragging around their deceased partners. I'm not kidding, these things travel in packs and can surround you before you know it. Then, it's just too late.

In spite of the bugs and flies, it was a good afternoon. I am thankful that Addie and Sabian enjoyed their afternoon together. I am also thankful that due to commitments we've had every night this week, I haven't had to make dinner...even once.

Speaking of love bugs, how cute is this little bug?!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

When Grandma Comes to Town

Last Thursday night Sabian's mom flew in to spend the long weekend with us...and boy were her arms tired! Ha.

As mother-in-laws go, she is one of the easiest house guests you will ever have - up for anything and simply happy to hang out. We spent her first full day here with a few hours at the beach; it was a perfect day to be out there. Surprisingly, the beach was not yet crowded for the holiday weekend and it was sunny, but not too hot. We were treated to a show by several dolphins that came very close to shore, as well as about a dozen pelicans that were fishing almost the entire time we were out there.

As indicated by the many photos we have taken, Addie has had several trips to the beach but we usually get out there around sunset and spend about an hour or so walking, finding shells, and watching the colors in the sky change. This was her first "day" on the beach and her first real dip in the Gulf. Just as with her first time in the pool, she was mesmerized by the water and, as it turns out, seems to like the taste of salt water. Blech. She did really well while we were out there and thanks to me, had a patch of sun around her eye. Seems my attempt to protect her with sunscreen and a hat was successful save for one eye.

Later that night we went to Pier Park and did a little shopping. Saturday we got up and went to Apalachicola and did a little exploring on St. George Island. We do have photos of this excursion but they are in our other camera. If I can remember, I will post those when we have them loaded.

Sunday was a regular church day, although our evening service was canceled for the holiday weekend. That was when we took Cheryl on the 5 cent tour of Wewa. We also had Addie dedicated at our church here that morning. We'd had her dedicated at my home church back in May and we've been wanting to do it here, so it worked out well to have Sabian's mom here during that special time.
I am thankful for a good weekend and a good visit. I think we're all still recovering from being on the go, but we can always take an extra nap or two - you'll hear no complaints from me about that!