This poor blog has taken the back seat in the wild schedule of our lives recently! Following Jack's birthday, we took a really nice vacation to northern Indiana to see my family. While we were there, we celebrated Jason's birthday and the Fourth. Jay and I also took a vacation from the vacation, left the kids with my parents and went to Chicago for a night! We took in the Art Institute, and while being in awe over the many famous paintings from centuries past, we are still banging our heads against the wall trying to figure out some of the modern art(?) Not that I mean to begin a discussion on art here, but if you have explain in two or three paragraphs the meaning of your piece, is it really art? I guess he and I just appreciate pretty art, not shock art.
On our way home, we got the kind of call that you never forget. A friend of the family, our doctor's wife, had been struck by lightning as she was taking out her trash, and her life was in definite question. The rest of our trip was agonizingly long as we dealt with fussy kids and long highways, but we realized that our troubles were nothing compared to what the Yoder family was facing. Several days later, her struggle was over. Needless to say, her death was a huge shock to all of Atmore and beyond. It was completely unexpected. She was in good health. She loved God, served her family and the community, and lived an exemplary life. It's really made me think about my life and what I want it to be about. Yes, I have peace with God; there is no question in my mind about where I will go when I die. But really, what am I here for? Does God really have my whole heart? And what does God want me to be doing with my time and money? Heavy stuff. At the same time, it's good to wrestle with the questions.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch....here are some pictures from Jack's birthday party! We celebrate life when we have the chance, there is no doubt, and this little man is certainly bursting with life. You only turn one once!
I had hung streamers and the birthday banner the night before. Owen and Helen's energy levels cranked up three notches when they saw them in the morning. Jack could have cared less, but he may have smiled a bit. I decorated the cupcakes during their naptime, and got everything else finished up then too. I had just finished laying out the plastic spoons, when Owen woke up with a fever. In spite of feeling bad, he and Helen were still in awe of the cupcakes, and were picking out which ones were theirs.Apparently we are experts at getting sick just in time for parties; poor Owen had to miss his own last year! We put out the warning to the cousins. Owen burst into tears at the thought of missing the party, until he understood he could still have a cupcake. He quickly regained his former cheerfulness. What the promise of sugar won't do....! Uncle Brent and Aunt Jan came anyway, and we kept Owen with the adults. (I don't think he minded a bit.)
Jack cried because Mean Mommy wouldn't let him touch the burning candle.
He got over it once I shoved some cake in his mouth. Then instinct took over.
He got a pair of pajamas, some fun toys, and one seriously evil toy from his Aunt Jan.
By the way, you can gauge the evilness of a toy by how many big kids flock around it. From mom and dad he got a barely used Dora "ridey thing" that I found at a yard sale for $2. Hey, for a kid who plays with boxes, what does the price of the toy matter?!
Aunt Jan herself got the best gift of the evening--
a finished quilt by her mother! The best thing about that is we're next!