Sunday, June 28, 2009

Tickle tickle!

Sabrina is starting to say just a few words and sounds. "Ba" means anything from "book" to "bird" to "hey, look at that person over there! He has a duck on his head!" She also knows "tickle tickle," and usually says it while poking at my toes. A couple of days ago I caught her tickling her own feet, saying "diddle diddle."

And, in more proof that Sabrina is growing up, I was reading in our office the other day. Just a review: when you walk into our house, you are on the main floor. You can go both upstairs, where the office and kid bedrooms are, or downstairs where my bedroom is. So: I was reading upstairs and suddenly realized I couldn't see Sabrina. Usually she goes to Spencer's room because he's got all the cool toys, but she wasn't there, or in the living room emptying my purse, or in the bathroom playing with the toilet water. She had manoeuvred down not one but two flights of stairs and was playing with my shoes in my bedroom, perfectly happy. At least she hadn't gone out the dog door.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Great Divorce

I just read The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis for my SIL book club today. What a book! Seriously, it ranks up there with Pilgrim's Progress. Theology in story form. Despite the fact that I could only find it for $14 and more, I might have to buy it. Secondhand.

The main idea is that the narrator goes to a gray city where everyone fights and is totally self-absorbed. Then he goes on a bus to "The Valley of the Shadow of Life," where he discovers he is but a shadow, and his feet cannot even bend the grass. He basically wanders around, observing how much most people do not even want to go on to heaven. Most of them that we see actually went back to the gray city.

Here are some things that especially struck me. First, the idea that even if someone decides not to come to heaven, the people in heaven are not sad. At first it seems sort of rude that heavenly beings will not grieve for us (and I think they will grieve for, we will grieve for them) if we choose not to go on, but if we had to be sad because someone did not choose heaven, our happiness would be held hostage to those who will only enter heaven on their own terms, rather than God's terms. In somewhat shorter form: even if our happiness is sometimes held hostage here, it will not be held hostage in heaven. I think this idea needs a lot of pondering before I settle down to exactly what it means.

Another amazing idea in the book involves a man with a lizard on his shoulder. The lizard represents a bad habit--I think it was lust, or "sensuality." An angel asks the man if he, the angel, can kill the lizard. The angel must have the man's permission, which the man at first is unwilling to give. When the man finally does give permission, the angel kills the lizard (which hurts the man), but then the man becomes solid and the dead lizard turns into a magnificent (live) horse, on which the man then joyfully rides to heaven. It's sort of a King Lamoni "give up all your sins to know God" kind of deal. What the narrator's guide says is, "if the risen body even of appetite is as grand a horse as ye saw, what would the risen body of maternal love or friendship be?" In other words, we don't just have to give up our sins, but everything to God, and once we do he will return it more glorious than we can possibly imagine.

Finally for now, as this 120-page book could be discussed all day, is the idea that if we do not forgive, we cannot get into heaven. Who is to say that the person who cheated us or was a murderer or corrupted our children will not repent? And if God forgives them, can we really withhold our forgiveness? And who does it matter to? Not the repentant sinner! Just to us! As one of the angels said, "You are not a decent man and didn't do your best. We none of us were and we none of us did....I haven't got my rights, or I should not be here. You will not get yours either. You'll get something far better. Never fear."

May we all not get our rights, but something far better.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

No. 16

We were up at the FCC (Froerer Family Compound) today for Father's Day, when suddenly, out of nowhere, Sabrina stood up. By herself. I looked over and there she was, solid as can be, waving and making baby noises. I, of course, started shrieking, "She's standing! Look, she's standing all by herself!" and other, less intelligible phrases. Everyone looked politely for a moment, and then went back to what they were doing. Sigh. When you're the 16th of 17 (soon to be 20) grandchildren, standing up is just not that big a deal. I wish Karen or Cheri had been there, because they would have given Sabrina the kudos she deserved!

Today was also, besides the Vernal Equinox, Father's Day and Sabrina's First Standing Day, our second anniversary. We decided to put off celebrating until next weekend, since this weekend we have Spencer, and let's face it, an 8-year-old is not conducive to anniversary games. You know, like Star Wars video games and strip poker. Good times had by all.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

New Tricks

Oh, I am so proud! Tiny is doing so many tricks! Of course, she won't do them on cue, so you'll just have to take my word for it that, in addition to saying "quack quack" at just about any animal (including herself in the mirror), she also unloads the dishwasher (of silverware, even when it's dirty, and places it neatly on the floor), and also bounces up and down when I sing "dance dance dance" to the tune of "Peter and the Wolf." You know, da, da, da-da da da, da-da da da, da-da da da da DAAA da da DAA, da da DAA daaa daa. So cute, especially in the cart at Costco. People must think I'm nuts. I'll have to remember to stop this behavior when Tiny is a teenager.

In other news, I called in to talk radio for the first time in my life. Doug Fabrizio from Radio West on NPR was hosting some guy who made the movie "Outrage," in which he outed politicians he says are gay but who are closeted and vote against gay issues. This filmmaker said being in the closet has a lot of personal costs, which is what I responded to. He then said being gay and voting against gay issues is an issue of hypocrisy, and therefore it's a valid news story, like any other hypocrisy like criminal behavior or tax evasion. What I said was there is a personal cost to being "out," too, and that he was playing god (with the implied subtext that he was a big meanie). What I wish I could have said to his response (the hypocrisy bit) was that he was COMPARING BEING GAY TO BEING A CRIMINAL OR CHEATING ON YOUR TAXES! Hello! I don't think that's the message you are trying to send! Nor is it in any way accurate! So besides being a big meanie, you're a bonehead, also! Great job on convincing me!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Bath, and breathing underwater

A couple of days ago, Sabrina threw up. Long story.

Okay, not a long story. She threw up twice. A lot. On me. And herself. End of story.

So, needless to say, she smelled, well, gross. I decided that, as it had been four (or more) days since her last bath, the vomit was the last straw, and bathed her. Sabrina now loves her bath. She crawls around in the two inches of water, squealing when she sees the baby in the silver bath hardware, and quacking at her duck. She also likes to suck on her washcloth, I guess because she's thirsty. Whatever.

Because she likes to suck on the washcloth and chew on her duck, sometimes she tries to put her mouth on them while they're underwater. This does not work. Here's how it went:
-Mmmmm! A duck!
-ahchoo. blink blink. smile.
-delicate cough.
-Aha! A washcloth.
-little sneeze.
-Mommy! Oh, okay. Everything is fine. Doo daa.

It was a good bath.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


What is with this rain?! It's like...Saskatchewan! It's probably not over 22 degrees! Celsius, I mean. Sorry, a little Canadian slipped in there. Seriously, though, I want to run through the summer fields! Dip my toes into the stream! Weed, mow the lawn, pull out thorn bushes...ah, the joys of being a home owner.

So, it's day 3 of being a SAHM. It's actually awesome having Spencer here, because we can do a few more things than Sabrina and I can. Every day he does math and reading, and an indoor and outdoor chore. Unless it's cold, miserable, and rainy. Okay, so he hasn't done any outdoor chores yet. Still, he really seems to like the routine of it all.

Jamie gave me a great idea to do with Spencer, too. Y'know how kids learn to count by 2s, 5s, and 10s? Her first graders also learns 3s, 4s, 5s, well you get the idea. Then, they are easily able to do multiplication. Genius! Spencer can now count by 3s to 36.

Sabrina can not yet count at all, much less by 3s to 36, but she can: 1) say KA for kitty 2) Say oof for woof 3) say ak ak for quack quack and 4) sit down in her high chair when we say "No! Sit doooown Sa-brina!" Then she stands back up again. Don't tell me to strap her in, houdini-baby just slides back out of the straps.

Monday, June 8, 2009


Day one of being a stay-at-home mom: Baby is up at 12 am. 3 am. Tired. So. Tired. Morale drops. Alarm goes off at 6 so new SAHM can go to office to work. Alarm is smashed by hammer. Morale improves.

Day looks better at 7:45. SAHM arises, feeds previously cute baby. Baby pouts and cries all morning. Day not looking so great after all.

9:00 Spencer cleans room. SAHM believes she can do this SAHM thing.

10:30 baby goes to sleep. Must wake her at 11:00 so SAHM can go to dentist. Nope, day is hard after all.

12:00 dentist appointment. One cavity. Curses! To feel better, SAHM scouts for sugar, but resists just in time.

2:00 SAHM at home, reunited with children. Time for video games! Morale improves.

5:45 SAHM's husband comes home. SAHM understands desire to hand off kids to dad and take a tub of ice cream into bathroom, where she doesn't have to share.

8:00 baby easily to bed. Morale improves.

8:30 blogging. Morale improves. SAHM can do this. No problem. No need to die in tent, a la Scott.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Summer Projects

Delightfully, the wallpaper has been stripped. As my white hands evidence, I have primed the formerly-wallpapered walls. I'm hoping to finish painting this weekend. Yay! What's next?

My dear mother-in-law, Marilyn, heard I was painting my kitchen. She laughed a little, and said, "You're never happy unless you have a project going!" My immediate response was (in my thoughts) a slightly indignant, "Yes I am!" Then I thought about it for a minute, and (in my thoughts) admitted ruefully, "No, I'm not." I DO always have to have a project going. Here are my summer plans:

1) Finish kitchen painting
2) Paint entire outside of my house *sigh*
3) Make a church-themed quiet book for a slightly older Sabrina
4) Finish my wedding scrapbook
5) Catch up on Sabrina's scrapbook
6) Collapse in exhaustion

Let's see how much I get done!