Friday, May 17, 2013


The cicadas have arrived in full force. It's actually pretty awesome. Since they wait 17 years to make their appearance, I thought they deserved some documentation. So here are the pictures that I took this morning:
 An adult, hanging onto his molted nymph shell.
 One of the thousands of molted shells hanging from our trees.
 Our front porch
A newly molted adult cicada--it fell on my front door mat right in front of me.
I know, I know. I'm a giant dork. I'm okay with that. I just think this whole process is so interesting! They live in the ground for 17 years, come out all at once, molt, mate, lay eggs, and die. The mating hum alone is awe inspiring. Every day this week it has sounded like a house alarm going off in the distance. It took me two days to realize that it was not, in fact, a house alarm. And apparently my dorkiness will not die with me...Charlotte loves looking at these bugs. We found a nymph climbing up a tree in order to claim his molting spot, and she asked, "Can I pet him?"
And just so I don't piss anyone off who wants pictures of my family, as opposed to bugs, here you go:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

An Addendum

Yesterday Charlotte was sitting on the potty.  She let out a little poot.  She giggled, smiled, and said, "Sneaky fox."  The only correlation I can find would be that Swiper is called a sneaky fox on Dora.  But does he poot on Dora??

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Cute kids

Since I have not posted anything about my children in over a year, I think it's time to record all of the funny things I have written down lately.  If not, the little slips of paper and memories floating around in my mind will be lost forever.  Some of these were on Facebook, but those are hard to recover, so I apologize for the repetition.

1.  We were at the pool a few weeks ago, and Charlotte had a tornado (dive toy) that another boy had commandeered.  She wanted it back but was too afraid to approach him and ask in a voice loud enough to be heard.  Owen realized what had happened and asked the boy very nicely if he could have it back for his sister.  After Owen handed the toy to her, she turned to me and with the most adoring face declared, "Owen's my brother."

2.  Christmastime, 2010:  Owen and I were scrounging through the pantry, pulling out non-perishables to donate to a food pantry.  After putting one too many practical food items in a bag he said, "They need treats too.  That way if they have kids, they can have a treat.  We should put in some money too, so they can buy a house."

3.  November 2011:  During his soccer game, Owen was playing goalie and blocked a kid's kick. He then apologized to the boy who tried to score the goal. This falls in line with his statement early in the season that being goalie seemed kind of mean, "You're always stopping people from being able to score."

4.  July 2011:  I told Owen that exercise helps your body get stronger. His reply, "That's what Allegra does. It helps you stop sneezing and it helps you get stronger."  At the time, he only watched pbs shows that have no commercials. What the heck? Has Allegra embedded subliminal messages in Curious George?
5.  Sometime in the past 18 months:  Owen told Will that he didn't want him to read to him before bed.  Will then declared that he wouldn't get any books read to him at all.  I, wanting to bring peace to their relationship, said, "You should tell Daddy that you're sorry."  Owen's reply:  "But will that help me get books?"

6.  Owen's second day of Kindergarten, as he is getting off the bus, "Mom, I like riding the bus!  I made a new friend on the bus!  We played a game where you hit your foreheads.  Not your own.  You punch each other in the forehead.  It was fun!"  That was the last time he rode the bus.

7.  Fall 2011:  Owen, my cautious, safety-conscious child decided to foil the criminals as we were heading in for the evening and leaning his bike against a tree in our front yard.  He shoved his bike helmet under a pile of leaves and declared with pride, "Hey Mommy, I hid my helmet!  So if anybody tries to take my bike, they won't be able to ride it safely.  They'll fall down and get hurt."  How's that for criminal justice?

8.  Owen and Charlotte watched Curious George 2 a few months ago.  There is a scene where an angry little man is bent on doing his job, no matter that that involves putting a sweet little monkey in handcuffs.  Owen, with lip trembling and righteous anger on his face, said, "If I were there, and that was real, I would punch that man in the bottom!!"

 9.  And speaking of bottoms, around that same time Charlotte had a terrible bout of diarrhea.  After many unhappy trips to the bathroom over a course of two or three days, she was getting better.  I went into the bathroom with her, and she finally had a normal poopy.  She finished, stood up, looked in the potty and said with great excitement, "No more chicken poopy, yay!!!"  Not sure where that comparison came from, but it amused me.

If I've forgotten something funny that I've told you about, please remind me in the comments.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


I know it's been a year and a half, and I should probably start back with something funny or some cute pictures.  I even thought about writing one of those blogs first and saving what I really want to say for tomorrow.  But that seems disingenuous.  So here we go...

Jesus was deeply misunderstood by his family, followers, and even his disciples.  You see, they thought that he was there to be their literal king.  The Jewish people had been waiting and waiting for their deliverer.  They weren't thinking about a spiritual deliverer, someone to take away their sin and give them eternal life.  They wanted an actual, sword-wielding, government-overthrowing king.  Because, as I understand it, they were suffering.  There were all kinds of wrongs being committed--not the least of which included slavery and persecution.  You can understand why they would yearn for their Messiah to swoop in and bring justice for them.  But that is not what Jesus was there to do.  He was not a political figure.  He is the King and lover of our souls.  He said not one word about changing their government or bringing down slavery or making laws to support His teachings.

Am I implying that those of us who love Jesus should divest ourselves of the right to participate in government?  Absolutely not.  I believe that we should, in fact, must, bring our politics to the throne of God.  Before we go to a voting booth we should steep our decisions in prayer.  But please remember that the button you choose to push in that booth has not been emailed to you by the Lord.  Do not be so foolish to think that you (and those who agree with you) are the only ones who have sought out Jesus' wisdom and received an answer.  We are all wrong sometimes, and it would be arrogant to presume that we are always in perfect alignment with the mind of Christ.  Yet, in regards to a current hot-button issue, some Christians have decided that their opinion is the right opinion.  They have gone so far as to declare that those who don't agree with them are on the side of Satan.  Which is what brings me here today.  I want people to know that politics and religion are not synonyms.  That it is okay to pray and feel led to vote in a way that does not agree with your parents or pastor or best friend.

I intend to vote against NC Constitutional Amendment One.  For those of you who do not live in North Carolina, here is the wording for our May 8th ballot:  Constitutional amendment to provide that marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State.  I believe that God created marriage.  I believe that He intended for a man and a woman to become one, to live all of their days together, to refine each other, and to serve as an earthly picture of Jesus' love for us, His bride.  However, not everyone believes that.  If you do not see the Bible as God's truth, if you have not accepted Jesus' sacrifice, you have absolutely no reason to agree with my interpretation of marriage.  And I do not want to force my interpretation upon you. I do not want all of my personal religious beliefs made into laws.  The argument that marriage is God's, that we Christians somehow have a copyright on that word is based entirely on religion.  Yet I have not heard of large numbers of Christians declaring that atheists should not be allowed to marry or that Hindus need to come up with a new word for marriage.

I believe that everyone, no matter their religious beliefs, should be given equality.  And when marriage opens a gateway to special protections, both socially and economically, limiting access to that is effectively saying that not everyone is equal after all.  It seems designed to declare that homosexuals are "other" and their beliefs are worthless.  As a Christian, I do not understand how marginalizing a group of people shows them that we love them.  I yearn to show compassion to them.  My heart breaks for those who feel so completely alienated and unloved.  I feel as if we as a state are holding our stones, ready to throw them.  Ready to say that the majority of us do not care about you.  We care so little about you and your personal desires that we want to change our entire constitution, making it impossible for you to ever enter into a civil union or marriage or anything that will afford you the same rights that we, the heterosexuals, afford.  We will close our eyes to the sins that we commit.  We do not wish anyone to make a law that will punish us if we gossip to our friends, or that will limit our economic freedoms if we fail to tithe.  Every time that we put our selfish desires first, we will pretend that this is not a sin that we fall to every single day.  Because it is so much easier to focus on the sins of someone else.

In my mind, it does not matter whether you personally believe homosexuality is right or wrong.  This is an issue of love.  This is me, loving my neighbor as myself.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Whole Truth

When a forward appears in an inbox, it rarely has an author. Some Joe Schmo is sitting at his computer, spouting off nonsense based on something he heard some dude saying at the other pump while he was at the 7-Eleven. He mixes that with something he heard from his crazy Uncle Bubba, and some news story he half-listened to while he had a conversation with his wife about the bills. He's not brave or stupid enough to sign it. And now half of the nation is devouring every word. Not only are they soaking up his half-baked ideas, they are clicking the forward button and sending these ideas off to everyone they've ever known.

Gossip sent by email or Facebook is just as evil as the gossip that comes right from your lips. But the fact is that most people hit the forward or post button and don't think twice about it. They don't care if it's accurate. It doesn't even cross their mind that they are creating an exponential increase in the spread of lies. They "don't have time" to research anything. Even if research just means going to Snopes and typing two words in the search box. Here's a quote from one of the researchers at Snopes:

"For a good many people, it's not important whether things are true or not. It reflects what people want to believe. It reflects a worldview. It's their way of passing along things that concern them. Things they're afraid of. Like it could be, 'I don't care if Richard Nixon really did this. It sounds like something he would have done.' A lot of people are unwilling to acknowledge anything that contradicts their worldview. So telling them it's false doesn't necessarily slow them down. That's how urban legends get started for the most case."

I've gotta get off my soapbox. I have dirty dishes to wash.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Chicago--A Pictorial Review

Outdoor sushi. Yummy. Will being irritated that I am taking his picture while eating, making us look like crazy tourists.
Me, at the planetarium, looking like a total dork using the "Lunar Gravity Simulator." I have not personally been to the moon, but I imagine that this is not remotely similar.

Poor statue lady, getting shot in the face all day long by streams of water.
Proof that aliens have indeed landed.
The first of eight attempts to take a self portrait. The others were awful. Particularly the one where I decided to close my eyes until right before Will took the picture. I look like an alien.
This is the photo we texted Owen, just to let him know that we were still alive, even if Daddy was going to come home headless.
This photo does not do justice to the enormity of this fountain. I wanted to frolick in it. Since no one else was frolicking, I decided that was probably a bad idea.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

October Adventures

The first week of October was exceptional. Princeton defines exceptional as "Far beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree." I'd say that fits.

On October 1st, during quiet time, Owen filled a gallon-sized ziploc with water and carried it to his room--about four times. I'm not sure what the plan was. I think he was trying to create something. A moat? An island? A water park? Praise the Lord for the rubber-backed rug that was resting under his drowning block creation.

On October 4th, I was sitting quietly at my kitchen desk, writing. It was nap/quiet time. Owen appeared beside me. I did not speak to or look at him (because it's quiet time and I try to avoid giving him attention when he's supposed to be in his room). Finally he said quietly and with a note of trepidation, "Mom, look at me." All I could do was stare. He had given himself a haircut. A very BAD haircut:When I asked him what he had done, he handed me this:
We were about to leave for swim lessons, so there was nothing I could do. As soon as his swim instructor saw him, she laughed. She suggested I put some gel in his hair and get him in an emo band. By this time, every glance in his direction made me want to giggle. His daddy didn't quite see the humor in the situation when he got up from sleeping off his night shift. We immediately left for a family trip to Great Clips, where the stylist very seriously explained to Owen that in the future, he will need a license to cut hair.

October 5th: tree removal. The kids were both mesmerized by the equipment, workers, and noise. Here they are, literally hanging out of the window.

October 6th: camping in the backyard. I love camping. I love the night sounds, the cool weather that makes you snuggle down into your sleeping bag, the campfire. Since camping with a 20 month old is not the easiest thing in the world, we decidied to make use of our very own piece of the great outdoors. Charlotte went to sleep as usual in her crib, the monitor went in the kitchen window, and we sat by the lake, roasting marshmallows. Owen held the flashlight under his chin and told "scary" stories. He and Daddy spent the night soaking up the camping goodness, while I went back in to make sure the baby didn't burn down the house. I can't wait until she's old enough to come join in the fun.

October 7th: Dixie Classic Fair. Petting zoo. Pig races. Demolition derby (where Owen and Will got sprayed with dirt--does it get more awesome than that?). Fried candy bar. Cotton candy. Ferris wheel. I think I may start a countdown for next year.