Monday, April 11, 2011

Hard Times

This has been a hard winter for a variety of reasons.  First, health.  I kid you not when I say Macy has not gone over a week without a fever.  We finally got to what I believe was the root of the problem - LONG story there.  Thankfully, Parker stayed healthy until a viral round and then a week and a half later, the stomach flu. A much lighter version visited Tony and Macy.  Now I am taking my Airborne and trying to mentally overcome that little twinge at the back of my throat.  Second, the demise of the housing market - a VERY long story there.  Third, every morning I enter my classroom, I am mentally playing the Rocky theme in my head.  Some years you are a fighter more than a teacher.
This past Sunday found me cuddling Macy at home as she had been sick through the night with the stomach flu.  Tony and Parker headed to church.  Thankfully, we already had the craft lined out for King's Kids, and it was one Tony was ok with.  For some reason, he has an aversion to glue and glitter.  On his way back home, Tony called to report all the things I care about - how many kids there were, who was missing, and any hiccups (aka time outs).  He then mentioned we had an appreciation gift that Jenni Reigjers had dropped off.  "Oh, really? What was it?" "I didn't open it since it was for both of us." "OK" We said our good-byes and then Macy and I got back to sitting on the blankets watching Dino Dan.  If only you could have been there when Tony got home.  Macy cheered for Bubby and Daddy.  Then Tony hands me a bag with the sweetest pictures by our King's Kids friends. After ooooooingg and awwwning over those, we read the sweetest card thanking us for working with the two and threes and then offering FREE babysitting.  Tony & I smiled and high-fived.  We were content to stop right there, but there was more. A gift card to the Melting Pot - our favorite special occasion place.  Wow!  We read some more special thank yous, unwrapped beautiful wind chimes, and came to the last card.  It was another gift card to Ruth Chris (we haven't been there since we lived in Austin - what a big treat for us).  We were so stunned that we were silenced.
 Later, I found out that 40 families made this happen with Jenni leading the way. Please know that I am not sharing this to brag.  We've just been incredibly humbled.  The timing couldn't have been more perfect or surprising.  It's been a hard winter, but with spring comes encouragement. Thank you to our incredible church family who loves us like God does!  You've lifted us up when we were weary and reminded us hard times don't last forever.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Happy Birthday, Parker!

Parker enjoyed celebrating his birthday at school!  He got to wear a crown, be the "go to guy", and share cookies with his class.  At home, he got to pick his birthday dinner menu: steak in the crockpot, volcano mashed potatoes, green beans, rolls, and red velvet cake.  The cake request was a big surprise.  He's never had it.  But Tony and Parker are partners in running a restaurant, and they serve a lot of red velvet cake at their place.  You have probably never been there - it's an app on Tony's phone. :) 
He couldn't wait to open presents.  Macy did a good job recognizing that today was Bubby's (as she calls him) special day and watched without helping or throwing a fit.  That doesn't sound like much to ask unless you're 2 and sometimes terrible! :)

Parker was very happy with his presents which warmed my heart.  He's always prefered toys over clothes.  But he did say a sincere thank you after each gift.  It reaffirmed our decision about the big birthday gift.  Meet our newest family member -
Parker has been asking for a hamster for two years, and we have been telling him no way for two years.  But the thought that my baby was 7 and I only had 11 years to left to make memories that would endear him to me forever caused us to visit Petsmart last Saturday.  Yes, Tony totally appreciated my reasoning and was willing to reverse 2 years of shouting no every time Parker brought it up.  What a man!  We met a lovely young lady who told us all about dwarf robo hamsters.  Here's the nitty gritty: they're the smallest of all hamsters, they are not meant to be handled (a huge plus in my book), they are the cleanest of all the hamsters so their home only needs cleaned every two weeks.  Plus, they curl into a ball the size of a cotton ball.  Too cute!  So when Parker finished opening his wrapped presents, Tony said "Doesn't he have one more?"  "You're right.  He's only opened three." I quick wittedly replied.  "Where is it?", Parker wants to know with eyes darting all over the room. "I'll give you a hint.  It's not wrapped." his generous hint giving Dad replied. "Didn't you leave it in Parker's bedroom?" his helpful mother asked.  Parker generously allowed me to run upstairs with the camera.  But I got swept away in the moment and missed the picture.  But rest assured, Parker was so surprised and excited!  I think we achieved our goal.

Now please forgive this long post, but I will close with this: Our Top 7 Parkerisms:
1)  Macy could not have a better brother.  He is so patient and affectionate with her.
2) Parker loves school.  His teacher told me this morning that he wrote his friends through the school mail system but forgot to sign his name.  The friends started asking who mailed me math problems.  Miss Moses said who loves math in our class.  They all replied Parker!
3) Parker has a tender heart.
4) Parker has the best day ever - over and over again.
5) He hides special notes for me all over my classroom.  They go like this: Dear Mommy, I miss you.  I love you. Parker  
6) Parker constantly asks for a new recipe to try.
7) He says the sweetest prayers.  You can tell he is a regular at Saturday morning prayer hour.  I hear echoes of Wole and Bose and his daddy.

Happy Birthday, Parker!  I'll keep trying to make the most of the time I have left with you!  I love you!