Saturday, May 30, 2009
As we work on getting my new computer hard drive up and running, there are all these little quirky things that keep happening. And my dear husband has given up quite a lot of sleep to get these quirks straightened out. I'm flexible and trying to roll with it so I can get my work done and just jot down the weird things that pop up to be dealt with later.
The most noticeable thing is how my email seems to have taken on a mind of its own. I have four work email addresses, three personal ones, and one junk mail address. In a single day I get around 50 to 60 emails in total, which I think is somewhat manageable. But during the downtime while the computer was at the doctor, I accumulated 175 emails. Once I had access to them, I deleted most and dealt with the rest. But here is where the quirky part comes in: every time I log back into Outlook (my email program) these same 175 emails come zooming right back into their various in boxes! All fresh and happy to greet me with their bright bold Unread status. Sometimes I go through and delete them, and sometimes I just let them sit and wait for their duplicates to come on in and get deleted all at once.
Several times a day I hear that lovely little ding that indicates I have email... and look to find those same emails, coming round again! Mike did some voo-doo magic and fixed the problem so that it stopped... for about 24 hours. And today, mid-day, it started back up again. I wanted to be frustrated, but I couldn't help letting out a little laugh... Why hello there all my old friends! You are back again! What's this? There is a sale on at Old Navy? And my friend Doyle has been released from the hospital? Well this is all very great news! Except the excitement is sort of wearing off after the thirty-seven other times you brought me this same news, today alone! And although you are kindly reminding me to pay that water bill, the joke is on you! I already paid it! Ha-ha! Ho-ho!
Through a conversation using the wonders of instant messaging, I let Mike know that the flood gates had opened and once again those same 175 emails were back on the march through the ether and into my in boxes. I lamented the fact that none of them (None! Not even one!) were emails of the personal sort... the kind that say "Hey there Heather! How are you? Gosh I was just thinking of you and wanted to say howdy because that's the kind of great friend I am!" I thought that if there was an email like that, it would make the other 174 emails easier to wade through and delete, yet again.
A few minutes later, Outlook buzzed to life and in came the parade of emails again, followed by that happy little ding. But wait! What is this? An email from my husband! Sent to every single one of my addresses! Saying the exact same thing! "Hey there Heather! How are you? Gosh I was just thinking of you and wanted to say howdy because that's the kind of great husband I am!" I was delighted and started laughing, because it was sweet and I needed to let out some of that building tension from the constant deleting and searching for the one email I need amongst the hundreds I don't.
And then Michael's email came in a few more times! And brought with 175 of its closest friends like Old Navy, Doyle, and Mr. Water Bill! Oh the joy! The irony! The sick and twisted random firing of emails through the atmosphere bringing me to my knees desperately calling out for mercy! I started laughing. And then I laughed louder. I laughed so loud and so hard that tears started streaming down my face. This drew Benjamin to my side, who sweetly asked why I was crying. No Ben! Not crying! I'm laughing! Because if I don't laugh, I will cry for real!
Ben walked away, hands on his hips, shaking his head at his silly mom who clearly doesn't know anything about anything. And now that I've wiped away the tears, I will have to walk away, too, and leave this mystery to Mike!
***When I was a kid, I loved this scene from Mary Poppins... I thought that surely if I laughed hard enough, I too would be able to soar up and take tea on the ceiling!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
All year I've watched as other kids were recognized for things like "Outstanding Citizenship," "Perfect Attendance," and "Top Math Scores," and I'm confident that one day we'll see Benjamin up there getting one of those. But I've always felt a little twinge inside when I thought of our first born being left out of that circle, as Nathan is an intelligent kid, but not a stellar student in the traditional sense. He was once the recipient of a hand-me-down tee that said "I tried to be good but I got bored"... it was the perfect description of Nathan (when he grew out of it I gave it away as it doesn't suit Benjamin's personality at all). He's a quick study with an amazing grasp of how things work, and more interested in putting his knowledge to work rather than to sit and be lectured or tested on it. And once his interest has moved on, it's really difficult to get him back in review mode.
I once emptied Nathan's backpack of math tests that were filled with amazing sketches and thought I wish there was an award for "Best Doodles on the Back of Math Tests" award. So for him to be recognized in front of the entire school for what is obviously his biggest strength is no small thing. During those long months of pregnancy Michael and I would dream about the future for this long awaited child, and our hopes and dreams for him always revolved around living a creative life. How blessed we are to see those hopes and dreams flourishing in this way! Way to go, Nathan!
Friday, May 15, 2009
It's not all drudgery and doctor appointments, we've got plenty of fun packed in, like back-to-back road trip weekends and show tickets every week, and random house guests here and there. But there is just no blank white space for chilling out! So I'm grabbing it where I can, which is generally really, really late at night! At some point I'll get back to the blog and fill in all the details of our crazy fun month, but not right now! There are people to pick up from the airport right now! So check back soon! In the meantime, we are packing up the car and getting ready to hit the road! Woo-hoo!
Monday, May 11, 2009
Sunday, May 10, 2009
They also do a couple of special projects. First, the kids do some special art which is sent out and put on a plate. The second is a portrait of Mom, painted by the student. The kids get to mix the paint to the appropriate skin color, hair color, and choose a color for Mom's shirt and any embellishment, like a necklace. I've had Nathan's plate hanging in my kitchen the last two years, and we framed his portrait of me which hangs in our hallway. Both years the boys were very particular about mixing the exact right shade of rusty orange hair, making Mrs. K continue adding orange or yellow until it matched. I find it funny because between Nathan's kindergarten year and Ben's, I've changed my hair color three times, coming back to the current rusty shade I sported in 2007.
It was a wonderful event which all the moms enjoyed!
The kids singing. Ben is in the blue and white striped polo shirt. You can see all the portraits on the wall behind the kids.
Here is Ben's portrait of me. He chose a green shirt for me since that is my favorite color. And he created a jeweled necklace that I seem to like wearing around my chin.
Here is Nathan's portrait of me that hangs in our hallway. He also chose a green shirt. They know me and my love of all things green pretty well!
Saturday, May 9, 2009
Half of Benjamin's life.
The longest we have ever lived anywhere.
What a record for us, the people who pride ourselves on being nomads.
Our neighbor, who believes us to be the best neighbors on Earth despite our wily kids who constantly throw balls over her fence, play loudly in the back yard, and ride their scooters in her driveway, bought us an ice cream cake to mark this incredible milestone.
Wow! Now what???
Friday, May 8, 2009
Applying the beard and mustache.
Ben had to try it on, too.
Nathan the celebrity.
Giving the report.
Answering questions as George.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Happy children, perplexed over why both parents came to pick them up...
Walking home, telling stories of eating lunch in their classroom...
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
And I am. In more ways than one!
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Last year, Michael started reading to the boys from his collection, starting with old X-Men comics, which they loved, and then followed it up with some Spiderman. Nathan loved it so much he started making his own comics.
There were people in costume at most of the comic book stores. Michael and I went out to see X-Men Origins: Wolverine last night, and there were people in costume there, too. Gotta love L.A.! Here's Wolverine and Iron Man along with Benjamin and Nathan.
A couple of the stores had some pretty long lines. Here you see some Mormon missionaries who may or may not have been trying to convert Batman and Robin, but they did get some free comic books after waiting for an hour!
Ben was a little unsure of Batman and Robin, and opted not to jump into this photo. I can't really blame him!
And here I thought I'd toss this in. It's Nathan, age 4 1/2, wearing his Robin costume in Hong Kong. Oh, and a Mrs. Incredible Band-aid to cover the stitches on his forehead.
All in all, it was a great day for all three of the boys! Nathan rated it "Best Day Ever", and Benjamin was too busy reading his Disney Cars comic book to tell me what he thought!