Friday, April 18, 2008

A Girl's Gotta Do...

Right now I should be doing bookwork, but it can wait for five minutes. Sometimes when a blog topic presents itself you have to put everything on hold and strike while the iron is hot. After all, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. And, right now, what I've got to do is embarrass the heck out of my brother.

Hmm. Embarrass. I never realized exactly how close that word is to sounding like two other words...bare ass. Pardon my French, but as with most things colorful (or should I say off-color) in my life, it's Dave's fault. He stopped by this afternoon to watch the guys for me while I ran a few errands. He told me he had to be at work by 3pm, so I was back in plenty of time. I figured that, as usual, he'd have to stop by his house on his way to grab his uniform. It was getting closer and closer to 3 o'clock and he still hadn't made a move for the door, so I asked, "Don't you have to stop by your house?" "No," he said. "I've got my uniform in my car." Okay. (Although he was still cutting it insanely close.)

He finally headed out the door. A minute later I noticed the mailman drive by, so Owen and I went out to see if there were any surprises waiting in our mailbox. We didn't have to go far, though, before we got a heck of a surprise...Uncle Dave standing in the middle of our his undies! Aagh! He was changing into his work uniform right out in the open! To his credit, he blushed a little. But, he did admit to changing in public places more than a UNM parking lot, at the Monte Vista Fire Station parking lot, etc. "All the way down to your undies!?!", I had to ask. "Well", he shrugged, "that's what you do when you change your pants."

I have to admit, I was glad to hear that he does it in more places than just my driveway. At UNM, I could see that he could possibly snag a girl. At the Fire Station, he could possibly score a free meal. At my house, though, the best he'd probably do is thrill an elderly, widow neighbor!

Again, aagh...DAVE! He is too much.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Always Good for a Smile

Too bad I can't stick him on the dash of my car, because his little bobble head is the most entertaining I've ever seen. Zach seems to think he's actually implying a "no" response each time he does it. For instance, Zach asks, "Can you say 'Mama'?" Every time his little head wobbles back and forth. But, if Zach asks, "Can you say 'Dada'?", he usually answers with a smile. Stinker!

I don't doubt that it may actually be a "no" response, though. It seems likely to be the most common answer to the questioning he'll eventually receive. Already, Caleb has been plenty eager to blame things that go awry on his little counterpart. "Caleb, did you open this package of spaghetti?" (While we're still in the store.) "No. I think Owen did it." It wasn't the first time and I'm sure it won't be the last. Eventually, I probably will have to start questioning Owen. Something about that little sparkle in his eye does, admittedly, make me nervous. But for now, I am pretty confident that he didn't mess with the spaghetti.

Monday, April 14, 2008

What he wouldn't do...

After Squirt relocated to the porcelain bowl, Zach asked if we should go to the pet store and buy the "other" fish for Caleb. I opted no. I wanted to wait until Caleb actually asked. No sense in getting another fish if he's not going to be interested.

After this morning, however, I'm wondering if he wasn't so impressed with his brief stint as a proud fish-owner. He has resumed talk of getting a "pup", as he calls them.

In answer to his "Why not" question that I get so often these days, I again tried to explain that it might not be safe while we have a baby in the house. "Oh, okay," he said, with a surprising level of acceptance. But, I should have known better. His solution? "Maybe we can get a pup after we sell Owen."


Sunday, April 13, 2008

Rest in Peace, Little Squirt

Yep. You read it right. The poor little guy made it for exactly two days. I'm not sure what went wrong. It seems, though, that with a goldfish all it could take is the wrong barometric pressure and they'll turn belly up. Sorry. Bear with me, I'm trying to use humor so I won't get too sad about a dead fish and my role in his early demise. Because, it turns out that I was definitely the most affected.

Caleb was vaguely aware of what was going on. Suddenly Mommy was washing out Squirty's bowl...a last ditch effort to revive the almost-dead fish. I had hoped some nice, fresh water would do the trick. Unfortunately, it didn't. We were going to wait and tell him after his nap, so that at least he would be able to rest peacefully. (Although I am entirely convinced that we were both just stalling...still praying that the floating-on-his-side fish would make a miraculous recovery.) Before he made it to bed, though, Caleb noticed that his fishy was awful still. "Daddy, why isn't my fishy swimming." I was in another room taking care of Owen, so I cringed and waited for what was coming. I didn't exactly hear what Zach said. All I really heard was Caleb's unaffected resolve as he chirped, "Okay. I'll get the other fishy from the store."

WHAT? He was completely fine. At first, that bothered me more than the death of our new little pet. Not that I want to see my Caleb in tears, but... Does this say something about his personality? Is he already cold and calloused at the ripe young age of 3?

I was quite disturbed by the whole afternoon's events. Thankfully, though, God started the healing process quickly. He made me realize that Caleb is as precious and innocent as ever. And, better yet, he's been listening to his parents. Thankfully, we haven't had to talk to him too much about death yet. But when we have, we have always incorporated Jesus and his love for us into the discussion. So. What did Caleb take away from our conversations? That death isn't something to fear. Yeah! He seems pretty darn confident that he doesn't need to worry about his fishy. So, I guess I won't either.

May You Swim in Peace
Squirty Squirty
April 10 - April 12, 2008

But, to end our Squirty memorial on a happy note: On Friday night during dinner, he kept coming up to the top of the bowl and touching his round, little mouth to the surface. Caleb thought he was drinking his water and, as only a 3-year-old could, thought it was absolutely hilarious. "Look Mommy, look! He's drinking his water! He wants to get big and strong, so he can lift up cars like Uncle Justin." Ah, my Caleb...

Friday, April 11, 2008

Meet Squirt...

...the newest member of the Taylor household. That's right, we've had an addition. He was initially dubbed "Squirty Squirty", but thankfully it got shortened before too long!

Caleb has been desperate for a pet lately. I explained that we couldn't have a cat or dog right now, because it could be dangerous to have them near a baby. It wasn't a complete lie, even though the primary reason Zach and I don't want a "real" pet is because we don't want to invest the time and money that they undoubtedly require. I realized, though, that my explanation could leave him feeling a little (extra) resentment towards Owen. Plus, if and when we ever announce that a third Taylor baby is on the way, I don't want him to lose all hope of ever having his pet dreams-come-true. So, Caleb has a pet fish. On the way home, it was almost a draw as to whether he was more excited about the fish or the accompanying net that we had to buy, too. Now, though, it seems he's quite in love.

While on our way home with Squirt, we had a discussion about how Caleb would have to take very good care of him. It didn't take me too long, though, to realize that Caleb's idea of "good care" may not always be in poor little Squirt's best interest. I'd hardly gotten the bowl cleaned and set up before Caleb proudly announced, "I gave Squirt a piece of cereal, in case he gets hungry." Oh. Sure enough, he did. I found a Cheerio, that no doubt came from some corner on the floor, floating in Squirt's bowl. Aagh! So then we had to have another discussion about how sometimes the things that are good for us are not necessarily so good for fishies.

We also had a discussion about death and that all fishies eventually go to be with Jesus, even when you take really good care of them. He was okay with that, but yet I still find myself breathing a sigh of relief every time I walk by and see him wiggling in his bowl.

I have a feeling we'll be having lots more of these "discussions" in the following weeks, but that's good. It'll definitely be a learning experience for all of us. In the mean time, it's fun to see Caleb so excited about his new little friend.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Home Sweet Home

He's home! He trudged off the plane in Albuquerque at about 7:30 on Saturday night. He was bleary eyed, stuffy headed (from a cold he'd caught on their last day) and completely exhausted. And yet, still a sight for sore eyes!

There's lots of stories and pictures to share. But, for now, I think his first priorities are family time and sleep! We laid down to take a nap after church yesterday afternoon at about 2:30 and he didn't wake up until after 7pm! Oops. He needed it desperately, though. The only drawback came at 3:30 this morning when he was wide awake. A little early to get up for work. But, he did get up and do all the laundry from his trip. What a wonderful man!

I'll let him pick some of his favorite photos and we'll post them soon. In the mean time, I know that he's very proud of this one...

This is the monastery at Petra. If you look closely, you can get an idea of its size. The little specks near the doorway are people! He's the only one from the group who got to see it. He skipped out on lunch that day and asked Bryan if he could "take off". He did, and hiked as far and fast as he could to get in the sights during his limited time. This, some spectacular views and a run-in with a small boy and his obstinate goat were his reward. Well worth it, if you ask Zach.

Thank you, again, to all of you. Your prayers helped bring him home safely!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Almost Home

It's 1:45 in the afternoon and I just kissed Zach goodnight. It's almost 11:00pm in Jerusalem. Believe me, we are both ready to be done with this expanse of time and space that is separating us.

When he wakes up, it will be the beginning of his last day in Israel. They will be visiting all of the notable crucifiction and resurrection sites, going through the Holocaust Museum and then heading for the airport and home. Their plane leaves in the middle of the night. It sounds like it would be an emotionally and physically exhausting day on it's own. Instead, it's been preceded by about 11 equally challenging days. Please pray that Zach is able to enjoy this last part of his voyage. He is so thankful he's been able to take part in this trip. It's been the experience of a lifetime; such a blessing. At the same time, though, he misses home.

Thank you, Jesus, for your presence and for your protection. Thank you that you will never leave us or forsake us... Thank you for bringing my husband home safely.