Sunday, July 31, 2011

Things you don't want to hear your husband say during a home renovation project...

(....  and all of them have been spoken by Pete in the last 2 days, after he started tearing apart our master bathroom shower.  Everytime he comes downstairs and walks by, I get another not-so-encouraging tidbit.):

  1. Umm... I think this is going to be a bigger project than I thought.
  2. How much did you say you thought we should spend on this project?  Cuz I think it's gonna be more.
  3. Why does it seem like every little thing I need to do turns out to be a major deal?
  4. I forgot how dusty this was going to make everything.
  5. Uh oh.
  6. I'm sorry -- this is taking longer than I expected.
  7. I need to go back to Lowe's again.  (for the THIRD time that day!)
  8. This tool is too complicated to figure it out. I'm taking it back.
  9. Call your brother -- I might need some help.
  10. So, is it going to be a big deal if you can't use this bathroom for a long time?

This is the current scene:

Pete's current prediction:  "I think once I get to the tiling phase, I'll get in a good groove and there won't be any more big surprises."

We shall see!

Friday, July 29, 2011

For Mor-Mor

While we were at the beach in May, Mor-Mor taught yet another child the little game that begins, "Knock on the door..."   Miles loved it then, and has repeated it over and over and over ever since.  It has become one of his favorite.... what do I call it?  Non-rhyming poem?  Rhythmic saying?  Face-hitting game?

Anyway, Mor-Mor, I thought you might like to see your birthday-buddy from a distance, getting a little silly with it.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A morning in "Busytown?"

This morning, as I was out for a walk, I came upon some landscapers who had gotten in quite a pickle.  One of them had apparently banked their very wide and cumbersome riding mower too close to the edge of the pond.... and it had slipped right in the water.  So there were 4 men, clearly partly amused and partly befuddled, trying to determine their next course of action.  I wished I had my camera with me -- my boys would have loved to have seen this.  Rayna would have shrieked.

After awhile, our friendly garbage collectors came by in their truck, saw the predicament, turned the truck around, and came to offer some help.  Meanwhile, both of the stylists who work in our neighborhood hair salon were driving by in their cars on the way to open up the shop.  Sharon and Diane both stopped to check it all out, but like me, had little to offer in the muscle department.  Sharon eventually drove on -- can't keep the shaggy-haired customers waiting after all!  But Diane stayed, and knowing her as I do, I assume she was probably praying for them fervently and audibly in her car.

Well, eventually those hapless landscapers rigged up a way to get their awkward machine out of the pond, and on my second lap by the area, I could see smiling faces all the way around -- and hear Diane exuberantly clapping from her car! 

Maybe I've been reading too many Richard Scarry books to the kids lately, but something about the cheerful-but-accident-prone landscapers, helpful garbage collectors, and cheering hair stylists made me feel as if I was living in the pages of a Busytown book. 

I'm not sure which character I was... probably Lowly the Worm, considering how (not) helpful I was on the scene.  But later today I plan to be more like Able Baker Charlie.  :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Meanwhile, at camp....

While most of us were in Ohio for the week (and Pete in D.C. for half of it), Strider had the "fastest week ever" at Ligonier Camp with his cousin Nate.  Needless to say, he had a fantastic time!

Some of the highlights for him were:  playing night games (including ninja warfare and gold rush), going down a 200-foot downhill slip-n-slide, rock-climbing, doing the teambuilding exercises, eating a lot of chicken in the dining hall, winning cabin clean-up and several games/contests, and playing a lot of sports (archery, dodgeball, soccer, basketball, swimming, etc.).  It sounds like they were very busy all the time, even in the heat.

We weren't able to get a lot of pictures of the week, but here are a few low-quality ones....

His tribe and counselors:

Doing one of the team-building challenges:

Playing Gaga-ball (Strider's the one on the right):

Cousin Nate climbing:

One cool thing we found out at the end was that one of Strider's cabin-mates was the son of one of Pete's fellow counselors and friends from 20 years ago!  Pete and Brandon had a fun reunion on the pick-up day.

It was weird for me to not have contact with Strider all week-- to not be able to call and remind him to wash his hands before dinner, or to try and be friendly to that lonely-looking kid reading his book on his bunk when we left.... but I prayed that the Holy Spirit would be the voice he listened to.  (He'd certainly have better advice, anyway!)

In the long car ride home at the end of the week, we got to hear all kinds of tales of his adventures.  Some of them made us smile as we realized that many Ligonier traditions have been around since we were there years ago.  And some of the tales just about put this control-freak mother over the edge.... like hearing about how his bedding got wet from a storm, on Monday, and was still wet!

But I know it was extremely good for him to have the freedom to experience all those things with other boys and authority figures... and it was good for me to learn to let go, too!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Other Ohio Highlights

Blueberry picking....

Seeing some wildlife...

 Celebrating Aunt Sue's birthday...
  (The above (right) is a hat that Colsen created for her... .it's for when she mows the lawn.  The front flap is supposed to keep the bugs and grass out of her face!)

Playing in the yard...

 Getting together with friends...  (We saw my friend Andrea, from Grove City, and her kids, and I also got to visit with another Grover-friend, Stacy!)

And fun family times around food...

 ....and just fun in general!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Hiking in the heat

Right near Grandpa and Gee-Gee's house are a few different places with nice hiking trails, so despite the high temperatures this week (didn't we try to leave this weather in NC?), we set out for a few walks to explore....

Carousel-ing with cousins